Sunday, June 15, 2008

And Here We Go Again

Gay couples are lining up once again in California to get married. San Fran's mayor, Gavin Newsom is scheduled to marry one couple as soon as the ban is lifted at 5pm on Monday. The couple, Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin, in their 80s, are still living together after 50 years. Forget about letting them get married, they should get an apology from every public official and pinhead who thinks that their right to get married is anything but long, long overdue. Fifty years? Quick. How many straight couples can you name with that kind of staying power? One? Two?

A number of stories have touted the coming economic boom in California's marriage-related businesses. Unlike Massachusetts, California isn't restricting these marriages to residents. And we're going to be looking at more than a few legal battles across various states as people push to make their California marriages stick wherever they live.

The legal process behind California's latest shot at legalizing gay marriage can, at best, be labeled a mess. This long road still has quite a way to go and it wouldn't be at all surprising to find the law overturned and argued again and again before it's finally law for good.

And it will be a law for good. Not just in California and Massachusetts, but across the U.S. The only question is when. This is just one of those fears that generations grow out of. When you look at any data on gay marriage, the older the respondent, the less likely to support it, the younger, the more likely. Of course, the fact that it is coming isn't always good enough. It's not good enough for those who have to wait, and it's definitely not good for those who fear change even as they see it coming down the track.

Who knows how long the new policy will hold in California, or how long it will take for other states to stop clinging to outdated policies out of fear and ignorance. Best wishes to the couples who are taking the plunge in California in the days and weeks to come. I'm throwing some virtual rice over you.


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