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The Straight Dopes

Good news and bad news on same-sex relationships

We interrupt the usual sardonic wise-assery for this actual moment of sincerity. It's at times like these I feel at once very proud and very much ashamed to be an American.


I'm ashamed to be represented in the U.S. Senate by the happy homophobe, Rick Santorum. But I'm proud of the Massachusetts Supreme Court for its courageous 4-3 ruling stating unequivocally that gays can marry. I absolutely love Chief Justice Margaret H. Marshall, who wrote that the Massachusetts Constitution "affirms the dignity and equality of all individuals." Wow. Granting everyone dignity and equality in the face of massive bigotry. That's one helluva ruling. Marshall went on to say the state constitution "forbids the creation of second-class citizens."


In a country that, since its inception, has ritualized the creation of second-class citizens -- at least until several decades go by and the elephant in the room called bigotry is obvious to even the most oblivious -- it's refreshing to see the smartest and bravest recognize the reality of discrimination.


At the same time, it's heart-wrenchingly disappointing that the high-profile oblivious are quoted as if their arguments have merit. High-profile nitwit and president of the Family Research Council Tony Perkins (insert Psycho joke here) told The New York Times "we must amend the Constitution if we are to stop a tyrannical judiciary from redefining marriage to the point of extinction."


If they gave out awards for sheer idiocy, this guy would garner a Golden Goober. Apparently, heterosexuals are going to jump on the same-sex marriage bandwagon to the point where marriage among members of the opposite sex will disappear. Apparently, heteros don't marry because they're sexually attracted to one another: It's just the trendy thing to do. But once we force-feed them homo-porno and require that they watch nothing but Will and Grace and old Liberace appearances on Dean Martin, they'll jump off that hetero train faster than you can say, "Bend over Beethoven and tell Tchaikovsky the news."


It's time to call a spade a spade -- or more accurately, a bigot a bigot. Fifty-nine percent of those who responded to a recent Pew Research Center poll are opposed to gay marriage. Undoubtedly some cite religious convictions, but let's face it: People mostly oppose gay marriage because gays make their skin crawl. It's gross. Icky poo-poo. They think gays are defective. They think bad things will happen to them if they hang around gays. They think some of it might rub off on them, literally and figuratively.


It's called ignorance. It's called bigotry.


Let's stop letting these bigots hide behind religion and other rationalizations. God created homosexuals, though this may come as news to the more bigoted. And another thing: Even if God doesn't like sexual relations between members of the same sex (and I don't believe he gives a Santorum's behind), that is a separate point from whether gays can have the same legal rights as straights. Frankly it's none of the government's damn business why people get married.


 The way we treat gays now is exactly the way we treated blacks a few decades ago. They made us uncomfortable. We could tolerate them as long as they stayed on their side of the tracks and didn't want to mix with us. We thought they were wired differently than us. Oh, sure, they're good at dancing and they're a bit more graceful than us, and they tend to accessorize more and dress a bit flashier, but their libidos are like those of wild animals. Best we keep a close eye on 'em, lest they try to indoctrinate the kids to their unnatural ways.


Ignorance is the primary cause of bigotry, and despite our supposedly superior higher education and affluence we are among the most ignorant people on the face of the earth. Hence, our refusal to jettison bigotry in all its forms.


If bigotry is the elephant in the room, we have to find a way to deal with these pachyderm poopheads. If this is the greatest country in the world, maybe it's time to move to Mars. Then we'll be the minority to a hopefully more enlightened majority. But if Martians are equally ignorant, we'll see how it feels when the elephant in the room craps on us.

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