Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Gay Marriage/Interracial Marriage Comparison

The difference Ta-Nehisi Coates (who is an African American straight friend to the gay community) suggests that the gay community is wrong to suggest that the ban on gay marriage is as evil as the now banned ban on gay marriage. In at least one important respect, it's (shh) worse:

"Much worse, the comparison with interracial marriage actually understates the evil of reserving marriage rights for certain classes of people. Banning interracial marriage meant that most black people could not marry outside of their race. This was morally indefensible, but very different than a total exclusion of gays from the institution of marriage. Throughout much of America, gays are effectively banned from marrying, not simply certain types of people, but any another compatible partner period. Unlike heterosexual blacks in 1960, the ban gays suffer under is unconditional and total and effectively offers one word for an entire sector of Americans--Die. For evading that ban means virtual--if not literal--suicide."

It gets better.

"A more compelling analogy would be a law barring blacks, not from marrying other whites, but effectively from marrying anyone at all. In fact we have just such an analogy. In the antebellum South, the marriages of the vast majority of African-Americans, much like gays today, held no legal standing. Slavery is obviously, itself, a problem--but abolitionists often, and accurately, noted that among its most heinous features was its utter disrespect for the families of the enslaved. Likewise, systemic homophobia is, itself, a problem--but among its most heinous features is its utter disrespect for the families formed by gays and lesbians."

Take that Bishop Jackson!
He gets it, perhaps even more than the spokespersons in the gay community get it.

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