Regardless of one's views on minority rights, the Religious Right shouldn't be so lamentable. Theodore Olson, the attorney who was famous for winning Bush v. Gore, actually presents a nice, solid case for why conservatives should support gay marriage. To summarize his article:
- Marriage, that being a "stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership," should be accessible to gays because it promotes so many of the values that conservatives cherish.
- Equal rights is a basic American principle embedded in the Declaration of Independence. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
- The very idea of marriage is basic to recognition as equals in our society; any status short of that is inferior, unjust, and unconstitutional.
- Tradition is the most common reason given to keep it as "one man, one woman." It's even the reason that ProtectMarriage, the primary organization in support of Proposition 8, states on its website. But as Olson states, just because we do something simply because "that's the way it has always has been done" is not an argument to keep it as such. "Otherwise we would still have segregated schools and debtors' prisons."
- Another common reason for "traditional marriage" is for the sake of procreation. "Preventing lesbians and gays from marrying does not cause more heterosexuals to marry and conceive more children. Likewise, allowing gays and lesbians to marry someone of the same sex will not discourage heterosexuals from marrying a person of the opposite sex." Furthermore, if procreation became a requirement for marriage, not only would we have Big Government in the bedroom, but any couple that does not procreate would ultimately have to have their marriage nullified. Sounds a bit extreme, doesn't it?
- The final main reason, and a ridiculous one at that, is that homosexual marriage will affect heterosexual marriage. People for "traditional marriage" fail to realize that heterosexuals have already done a "fine job" killing of such a "sacred institution." Gay marriage doesn't affect the stability of heterosexual marriage--straight people do.
- As such, there is no good reason to deny gay people the right to marry.
- We need to uphold such values as "families, lasting domestic relationships, and communities populated by persons with recognized and sanctioned bonds to one another," and we should give gay people those same rights to uphold such conservative values.
Marriage, by definition, is nothing more than a contract between consenting parties stating that they want to have a social, emotional, and economic relationship together. Judaism has this contractual concept--it's called a כתובה. Whether an individual church, mosque, or synagogue accepts such a marriage is their prerogative. And on a personal [or religious] level, I don't care how you feel about same-sex couples. How you deal with that sentiment is your issue, but do realize that if you support Prop 8, it erodes the very notions of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, which, at least the last time I checked, was un-American.