until _____ do us part

By Diogenes (articles ) | Jul 21, 2006

Led by Andrew Sullivan, gay-rights activists have argued for several years that if homosexuals and lesbians are allowed to marry, just like the rest of us, then they'll start acting just like the rest of us. In Massachusetts that proposition is currently being tested, and to some ways of thinking it seems to be true. Same-sex couples take out marriage licenses (just like the rest of us); they exchange vows (just like the rest of us); and then after a while they break up (just like the rest of us?)

The front-page story in the Boston Globe sounds almost gleeful about the fractured relationship between Julie and Hillary Goodridge, the couple whose names appeared on the landmark case in which the state's Supreme Judicial Court decreed that homosexual couples are-- you guessed it-- just like the rest of us. They aren't yet contemplating divorce, but they're living apart, and trying to figure out what to do with the daughter who is, thanks to modern science and jurisprudence, legally if not genetically "their" offspring.

It's all so cozily familiar: the tender, bittersweet story of a couple whose love was stronger than social conventions. Once society frowned on a union of Montague and Capulet, but in our day the recrudescence of that ancient form of bias is found in an unwillingness to allow women to marry women. But our heroines overcome that prejudice, and march down the aisle to live happily ever...Oops! Alas, love fades, and mutates, and grows cold. As soon as I can figure out the chords I'll put the whole story in a C&W song, and you can play it for your date, and he or she (I make no presumptions or judgments) will be moved to tears.

What's wrong with this picture?

First, some of "the rest of us" don't break up. I know scores of married couples who have persevered and repaired and nourished and retained a fragile marital bond-- sometimes in objectively awful circumstances-- because when they said "until death do us part," they meant it. It was a vow, you see: not a rhetorical gesture.

Yes, there are thousands-- millions-- of couples for whom the words were just words. Shame on them! If you want to say that they are no different from the unhappy Goodridge couple, I'll readily acknowledge that you have a strong argument. But notice, please, that your argument is predicated on the fact that these couples betrayed their own vows. You can judge them harshly if you wish; your judgment does not bear on the vows they violated.

Now why is the Boston Globe so intent on asserting the normalcy of the split between the Mss. Goodridge? Is it really a matter of asserting that gay couples are just like "the rest of us?" Or is it rather an effort to obliterate the distinction between those who keep their vows and those who don't?

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  • Posted by: - Jul. 27, 2006 10:33 AM ET USA

    Winky, may I ask something nonjudgmentally please? Would you say from your experience that homosexual behavior does not favor monogamy? I would think that since a homosexual couple cannot conceive children naturally that this would make for a weaker bond than the heterosexual couple who marries with the stated intent to have children. If you feel comfortable enough to respond I would very respectfully appreciate it.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 25, 2006 5:00 PM ET USA

    Ignorance can be cured to, hUMPTY dUMPTY. It's spelled celibacy.

  • Posted by: Gene Church - Jul. 25, 2006 2:12 PM ET USA

    Great response, Coco!

  • Posted by: - Jul. 24, 2006 9:18 PM ET USA

    Altar boy: That would be the genetic marker for Sin. We pass ours on to our children, just as Adam & Eve. Shall we then abort all? No, we should redeem all with Truth.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 22, 2006 9:22 PM ET USA

    Gay friendly straight friends of mine, who know about my own gay history, often ask me what I think of gay marriage. Most of the time I don't really want to get into the subject and my response is "The divorce rate is high enough." If they pursue the subject I tell them about the ten, fairly longterm, fairly monogamous relationships I tried. I was a pretty likely candidate to make them work, and I tried hard. The reality is they don't work and my knowlege of many others confirms this.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 22, 2006 3:41 PM ET USA

    Homosexuals and lesbians are allowed to marry in every state in the Union. They just don't seem interested in pairing with each other.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 22, 2006 3:11 PM ET USA

    I never thought this Catholic would say it, but I now believe the homosexuals’ assertion that they’re born that way. Given that as a starting point, it seems easy now for me to also acknowledge the wisdom of abortion-on-demand. If the scientific community can find the homosexual genetic marker, we can begin the process of ridding the world of homosexuality. (After all, no one really wants to be homosexual.) Then we wouldn’t have to worry about same sex marriage. Can I get some support here, Di?

  • Posted by: - Jul. 22, 2006 11:55 AM ET USA

    The head-scratching comment by an associate of mine was. "It's a civil union and would be a civil dissolution. Nothing involved with 'church' - so what's the big deal?" Sometimes I want to cry at the moral ignorance in this world.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 22, 2006 5:21 AM ET USA

    Hetereosexuality can be cured: the answer is celebacy. AMDG

  • Posted by: - Jul. 21, 2006 8:58 PM ET USA

    This may be a deliberate step in a grand scheme moving forward in a methodical way, by the homosexual movement. The financial consequences could be staggering on both an individual level as well as a community level. Also, compare the enormous number of lovers that homosexuals take in a lifetime compared to even the most promiscuous heterosexual. Once homosexual divorce is normalized, they'll have the best of both worlds.

  • Posted by: Moneo - Jul. 21, 2006 8:38 PM ET USA

    And gay "rights" activists always made such a big deal how lesbian relationships were by nature so much more stable than male homosexual relationships because women are more interested in commitment and emotional security than men. It wasn't about sex after all. Behold the stability. They barely passed the two year mark. I read that their attorney is asking for respect for their privacy. They were quite happy to be Famous Public Gay Marriage Poster Persons before, but now...

  • Posted by: - Jul. 21, 2006 7:54 PM ET USA

    I think "until _____ do us part" is the funniest title for any article I've ever seen!

  • Posted by: - Jul. 21, 2006 6:38 PM ET USA

    Let me see if I understand this. Something intrinsically disordered does not endure? Shocking!

  • Posted by: sparch - Jul. 21, 2006 5:49 PM ET USA

    It's an attempt to show how homosexual relationships are actually mainstream and normal just like hetrosextual relationships. Unfortunately, this also precludes the idea that divorce is normal and should also be accepted. I am still working on that one.