I got into a debate on gay marriage with a gay friend of mine, and the "separate but equal" issue around civil unions vs marriage was raised. One man commented saying that civil unions are tantamount to the civil rights issue of separate but equal programs and facilities , and even suggested that we'd prefer the gay people to ride in the back of the bus. A bit of a stretch don't you think? So this raised the question of whether gay marriage is actually separate from heterosexual marriage. I say yes.
To me, if you cannot say "I now pronounce you husband and wife" at the end of the ceremony then it is not marriage. A marriage was designed to bring 2 individuals together, and at the end of the ceremony they are no longer those 2 individuals, but a husband and a wife. Two halves of the same whole. This is why I believe that a gay union, though it can have the same emotional commitment, the same love, and should have the same rights as a marriage, is not a marriage.
Try asking a gay couple which is the husband and which is the wife and see what kind of reaction you get. This is the reaction I got from the question, "I have never thought of an answer to that question and never will. It is offensive to even ask an ignorant question like that. In any relationship that I am in there are two men and we would both be a "husband." The terms husband and wife are strictly titles as they should be. This is setting the entire female movement back 40 years. What "role" would you define as a woman's role? Dishes? Laundry? At home in the kitchen with a baby on the hip? If you are talking about sexual roles we refer to that as top and bottom. However some people are adventurous and go both ways. Regardless of any of that information I am not going to be emasculated by some bullshit title that you want to try to slap on me or any other gay man." The fact that you would even have to ask that question makes it separate from a heterosexual marriage. And do you think if you asked a heterosexual couple that same question you'd get the same defensive answer? Nope. Therefore, it is different. It is not the same. And this is not about roles of women vs men, but the titles of the parties involved in a marriage.
The separate but equal stance on the racial issue was wrong because the blacks were no different from the whites. They weren't asking that anything be redefined to include them, but that they, as people, were already included. The gays on the other hand are asking for marriage to be re-defined. That alone makes the reference to the civil rights issue baseless and not just a little bit offensive. In things other than marriage, relating to discrimination due to their sexual orientation, I can see the reference. But not as far as marriage goes. Their unions are separate. They are incoherently different from a heterosexual union. Therefore a separate but equal benefit is the logical solution.
But that separate but equal is just not good enough. It's an all or nothing stance that many have taken. Instead of being happy with the legal rights for now and continuing to move forward, they won't accept the compromise and continue to push and push hard. And wasn't it Newton's Law of Physics that said that every action has an equal and opposite reaction? Which means that the harder they push, the more resistance they meet. And who is suffering due to this refusal to compromise? They are. By not accepting the legal rights compromise, they are losing out on the main point they wish to secure. Interesting approach to the problem.
And now I have been informed that I am still violating the rights of the gays by not supporting their right to define marriage how they want. So the argument has basically come down to the belief that they have a right to define marriage how they want, but I do not have that same right. Interesting stance. And any position I take against it is illogical, while the stance they take for it is logical. How can you have a debate with somebody who believes they are the only ones allowed to make the rules?