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ACLU claims to “secure equal rights for everyone” — 2 Comments

  1. Jersey: Allowing LGBT marriages will create the same dividing lines between the married and the unmarried in the LGBT community that now exist in the rest of society. If you think that there are no significant differences in the rights of the married and the unmarried, I can understand why you’d think my arguments are inane. But marriage comes with 1,100 rights & privileges not available to the unmarried, that includes the right to see a sick loved one in the hospital or to inherit a house without being hit by a huge tax burden after your spouse died. By focusing exclusively on the right to get married, the LGBT movement stopped fighting for the right of every loved one to visit someone sick in the hospital, for example. Instead of looking at the actual problem – such as the right to visit someone you love in the hospital – marriage has been viewed as a panacea. Well, it might be for those people who get married but the people who don’t want to will be left out. The LGBT movement used to fight for the rights of every family within their community. They took pride in being a more inclusive community that cherished family diversity. Their focus has now narrowed to those who want to get married. It’s like your bird watcher club deciding that only certain types of birds deserve to live in the bird reserve and the others just need to continue fending for themselves.

    If you look at the history of the LGBT movement, there was a clear right-shift from supporting all family forms to focusing on marriage. That shift was influenced by a right-wing backlash – the “marriage movement” – and it leaves out tons of families. Additionally, the right-wing backlash against gay marriage has affected unmarried couples in many states since the “marriage protection” amendments often reach beyond marriage and also affect domestic partnerships (see here for more examples of how rights hard won by a coalition that went beyond marriage are now being rolled back). The recent amendment in Florida is one such restrictive amendment.

    Fighting for those people within the LGBT community who want to get married leaves no time, money, and energy to address the underlying issues. It also creates the illusion that once LGBT people can get married, equality for all is achieved. No, just the line dividing the married and the unmarried has been moved. Single parents, cohabitating couples, friends sharing living arrangements, siblings living together, and the many other diverse forms of families are still not equal; they still don’t have the rights that married folks have.

  2. I don’t understand your rationale here. If there are people in the LGBT community who don’t want to get married, how does fighting for their right to get married even affect them, other than just giving them the option to change their minds if they so choose? How is allowing LGBT marraiges denying any right to anyone else? Why would the ACLU include other types of familial arrangements in a fight to secure a right for a particular type of arrangement? If a bird watcher club fights to keep a bird reserve must they then also fight for wombat reserves? I don’t understand any of your arguments here. They seem completely innane.

    JMJ

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