Go Fags, Go!

March 11, 2008 at 2:22 am (In Real Life, Journaling, Poltical-ish, Rants?, School) (, , )

We had a debate in class last Friday. I was to present, with the fellow members of my group, a con side to the question “Are civil unions democratic and just?”

Acknowledging that there are many ways to argue a con to that question, the gay/gay supporting among us chose to argue that civil unions were undemocratic and unjust because they institutional segregation–their existence serves as the excuse to keep gay men and women from marrying, from the term “marriage”, as well as deny them the rights at both a federal and state level that accompany such “married” status.

After some back and forth, “marriage” was defined as having both a political definition and a religious definition, and the religious one should have no bearing on the political.

And yet it does. The debate continued, and since neither side was against gay rights, it mostly consisted of how to achieve those rights. Yet the Q&A from the audience raised some points* about when the people will be “ready” for such action, and asked  how we respond to those who argued that progress is a slow-moving, yet steady process.

That was were my hurt lays, where the point of this whole entry lays. I couldn’t help but feel tempted to respond to them “it doesn’t fucking matter how long it takes YOU to feel comfortable with ME having equal rights!”. It hurts that people, time after time, feel that they have the right to use their emotional and religious beliefs to justify withholding rights to others. Yes, on an emotional level, I feel gay people should have the right to a political marriage. I feel that it is unfair that I can marry a man but not a woman. I don’t like it, and it hurts.

That said, For a debate, to actually try to convince an opponent that I’m right, I rely on facts. I rely on logic. I don’t say DOMA (Defense Of Marriage Act) is wrong because it is biased and judgemental and full of bigotry, I argue that DOMA violates certain constitutional rights guaranteed by the Equal Protection Act, and acts with blatant disregard for the rights that are supposed to be protected by the Full Faith and Credit Clause (Art IV, Sect I of the Constitution).**

What bothers me is that it’s not enough. It’s not enough that I, with NO legal training, can point out what is wrong with civil unions being the only option available to gay couples, with DOMA, as they are used today. Certain rights are denied to a certain group of people for no reason other than the bigotry in a majority, despite the protection of the Constitution, and that bothers me. It’s really frustrating that institutional segregation exists even today.

It’s frustrating, and it hurts.

___________________________________________

* It should be noted that those who asked the questions were all very respectful, and were not anti-gay rights. They were simply posing hypotheticals, and pointing out the arguments of others. They were a really nice audience.

**I assume it goes without saying that this is a more personal complaint that an argument against DOMA or civil unions as they are used today. If you want to hear that argument, or participate in a civil debate with me about it, feel free to engage. But don’t think that this is all I’ve got.

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