What Other Gays and Lesbians Are Saying October 23, 2006
What other gays and lesbians are saying. Not all gays and lesbians advocate for and support same-sex/gay marriage. After a resounding defeat in 7 court cases (state and federal) in July 2006 a coalition of 250 authors, activists, intellectuals, and celebrities released a major statement.
Beyond Same-sex Marriage: A New Strategic Vision for All of Families and Relationships. This statement may read on the internet at http://www.beyondmarriage.org/.
In April 2006 a diverse group of nearly twenty LGBT and queer activists - some organizers, some scholars and educators, some funders, some writers and cultural workers - came together to discuss marriage and family politics as they exist in the United States today. (www.beyondmarriage.org)
An editorial response to the release of this major statement, Beyond Same-sex Marriage: A New Strategic Vision for All of Families and Relationships” may be read online at http://www.washblade.com/2006/9-1/view/columns/gannon.cfm. The author of this editorial response is an editor for the Window Media LLC Publications Company. This is a leading publisher for gay and lesbian publications nationwide, Southern Voice (Atlanta), Houston Voice (Houston), Express gay news (southern Florida), The New York Blade (New York) and The Washington Blade (Washington). The title of Jeff Gannon’s editorial is “Gay Marriage is a lost cause.” Gay activists failed strategy has put same-sex marriage out of reach for a long time to come. The following two quotes are from his article.
Gay leaders demonized opponents of same-sex marriage as hateful bigots and homophobes, completely ignoring the religious and social motivations behind the opposition. The reality is that marriage as the union of one man and one woman is our most basic social institution and deeply rooted in our culture.
"Instead of waging efforts to change hearts and minds, gay movement leaders have tried to bludgeon opponents and pursued a strategy where a very small minority would impose its will on a vast majority through judicial fiat.
Meet the marriage malcontents
This is the title of a Sept. 30, 2005 article from a gay newspaper, the New York Blade. Not all gays and lesbians advocate for and support same-sex/gay marriage. The following information is taken from that article written by James Withers. http://www.nyblade.com/2005/9-30/news/national/case.cfm
A transgendered, male to female, said this about the same-sex/gay marriages that took place in San Francisco in 2004.
Despite all this joy, Mattilda, also known as Matt Bernstein Sycamore, was utterly dejected.
Nothing could be more depressing than the spectacle of this gay marriage charade played out on the national landscape and the way in which the gay marriage agenda erases decades of queer struggle to make transformative ways of making and loving, Mattilda said. We are now so sanitized.
But some even more moderate gays and lesbians question why the gay rights movement at large has become so single-minded when it comes to same-sex/gay marriage. Below are two moderates views that were expressed in the article.
New York University professor Lisa Duggan wonders when gays and lesbians, as a diverse community, had a conversation about the importance of marriage as a right.
It’s not exactly like everyone got together and decided to make it an issue, Duggan said. There has not been an internal debate about this.
Joseph DeFilippis, coordinator of Queers for Economic Justice, accuses gay-rights activists of not taking the debate to the people.
It is not a grass-roots movement, he said. This has bypassed the legislation process. The gay movement is using the judicial branch. There is no grass-roots support for it.
The folk who gay marriage is a number one issue are privileged white folk of some financial means and this is the only deprivation in their lives, DeFilippis said. And they have hijacked the movement.
There are usually two reasons given by those gays and lesbians who oppose marriage. The first is that marriage itself has problems. The second is what should alarm those who support marriage. That is there are gays and lesbians who wish to undermine marriage and family itself.
For those not part of the same-sex marriage movement, many point out that marriage is rife with problems that gays and lesbians should be wary of.
We want to be just like straight people, the same people who were beating us up and not allowing us to express ourselves, Mattilda said. We need to think bigger than that. We need to challenge the systems of oppressions and build something more deviant, devious, and devastating.
This last quote is from a book, whose both authors self-identify as gay and the title is an accurate description of its contents.
In short, the gay lifestyle - if such a chaos can, after all, legitimately be called a lifestyle - it just doesn’t work: it doesn’t serve the two functions for which all social framework evolve: to constrain people’s natural impulses to behave badly and to meet their natural needs. While it’s impossible to provide an exhaustive analytic list of all the root causes and aggravants of this failure, we can asservate at least some of the major causes. Many have been dissected, above, as elements of the Ten Misbehaviors; it only remains to discuss the failure of the gay community to provide a viable alternative to the heterosexual family. (Kirk and Madsen, After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of the Gays in the 90s, p.363)