Same-Sex Marriage: 2012's Top Political Issue


Since human survival depends mainly upon economics, education, environment, agriculture, health, housing, and peace, it’s logical to ask, “Why is same-gender marriage being treated as the most important political issue of 2012?”

Over the last few years, same-gender marriage meteorically rose until it became the most contentious, most vote-getting, most funded, and, therefore, the most important 2012 issue, but that was not by accident, or by coincidence. Same-gender marriage was chosen to be the most important by two opposite forces: human rights activists working for equality; and anti-LGBT industry lobbyists who create “culture wars” to generate funds and votes for any politician willing to betray LGBT voters for cash and clout.

Same-gender marriage became the topmost political issue after years of very public fights between avowed opponents: elected vs. would-be politicians, journalists vs. hired-gun public relations writers, health professionals vs. quacks, true clergy vs. for-profit televangelists, and human rights activists vs. stealth evangelism dominionists (e.g., Invisible Children Corporation’s phony Kony 2012 souvenir factory).

Today, same-gender marriage is the hottest political topic in 2012 because of 8 uniquely American events.

1.  Citizens are deeply divided.  •  48% of Americans now want marriage equality for everyone, but 42% want marriage restricted, in combined 2012 poll results from CBS News, New York Times, NBC, Wall Street Journal, ABC News, Gallup Politics, Pew Research, and Public Religion Research Institute.

2.  Citizens are pitted against each other.  •  Same-gender marriage is now the American liberty that gets decided most often by statewide ballot. In 2012 alone, same-gender marriage appears on ballots in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Washington.

3.  States violate each other’s rights.  •  Same-gender relations are already variously recognized in 21 states (including District of Columbia), but same-gender marriage is banned by law and/or by constitution in 36 states, 9 of which nevertheless do recognize same-gender relations, just not same-gender marriage.

All that’s confusing enough, but the reality for legally married LGBT couples is worse.

In addition to some states offering civil union or domestic partnership but banning full marriage, every state conflicts with nearly every other state in one or more ways. Consequently, same-gender couples often must watch, helplessly, as their own legal marriages dissolve, then reappear, dissolve again, reappear again, et cetera — whenever they simply cross state borders to live, work, shop, visit relatives, or take their children on holidays.

4.  Both political parties aggravate the conflict, but in different ways.

Many Democrats want to add a marriage equality plank to this year’s party platform, but until recently most of their party leaders have remained silent.

On the other hand, the Republican party platform has never admitted that America’s 31 million LGBT citizens even exist at all. For the last 35 years in a row, minimum legal recognition has been begged for by the Log Cabin Republicans, long recognized as the “battered wives” of the gay community because every four years they re-wed themselves to a party that despises and hurts them.

But the Log Cabineers, the GOProud extremists, and other, dyed-in-the-wool-Republican-but-not-very-gay apologists never stop asking for — and receiving — more abuse, because they continue to endorse, fund, and elect more Republicans, even those who vow — as Mitt Romney did, in writing, on 4 August 2011  — to use policies, presidential orders, laws, and constitutional amendments to oppress all LGBT Americans everywhere.

Both parties have thus drawn stark, bright lines in the sand which no voter can ignore.

5.  Media outlets fan the flames daily.  •  Global media outlets report on LGBT human rights constantly, and in those reports, American same-gender marriage remains the overriding controversy.

6.  Hate groups flourish in the anti-LGBT industry.  •  Many large, loud hate groups — diligently certified by the Southern Poverty Law Center — launder tens of millions of dollars every year — into select states and into targeted demographic groups — all in order to oppose same-gender marriage. But these hate groups consistently violate public campaign finance laws by concealing the details of their membership rolls, donations, and expenditures.

7.  Wealthy religious leaders are converting America’s democracy into a theocracy.  •  Mormon officials, Catholic clergy, and other religious sect leaders launder tens of millions of church-goer dollars year after year — into select states, into deceptive “religious freedom” lawsuits, and into front groups, some of which pose as government-authorized “faith-based initiatives” — all in order to oppose same-gender marriage. But these clerics forbid independent, public audits, and conceal the details of their theocratic lobbying/litigation machines, so church-goers can’t tell how their money gets spent, and LGBT church-goers end up unwittingly funding their very own oppression.

8.  Soldiers are denied equal pay.  •  U.S. armed forces personnel are notoriously underpaid, with unmarried service personnel paid far less than the married ones. Anyone who risks limb and life for their country — but who also has a same-gender spouse — now suffers up to a 40% pay cut just because the 1996 federal “Defense-of-Marriage” Act says that their spouse and their marriage simply do not exist, even when they are locally valid, and fully legal in CT, DC, IA, MA, MD, NH, NY, VT, and WA.  Inexplicably, some states accept same-gender couples who got married in other states, but then deny such marriages for any of their very own citizens.

It is worth noting that the problem of marriage bigotry isn’t solely American; it’s international, thanks largely to the American evangelical dominionists who aggressively sell their U.S.-originated, anti-LGBT prejudices overseas. So cauldrons of controversy similar to those in America are also boiling globally — for better and for worse — in Australia, Chile, England, Ireland, Malaysia, the Philippines, Russia, Scotland, Uganda, Wales, and elsewhere.  And those are just the ten countries that made marriage equality news during April.