Gay Marriage: Reality Check Time
Okay, I think we all agree that whatever legal hurdles lie ahead, after the Supreme Court’s decision, it’s only a matter of time before gay marriage is legally recognized across the country. I’m happy that our rights as citizens have been recognized, particularly when we subsidize straight couple’s procreation by paying higher income taxes. And I think it’s terrific that that those of us who are itching to get hitched legally because we really want to and realize and understand the responsibilities and restrictions that come with it have a greater chance of doing just that.
But being the cynic’s cynic I also wonder if some of these life partners that need a flower girl to make their lives complete are doing it for the glitz factor or because it’s the hip “in” thing to do right now. Like the supposedly happily married gay neighbors of mine who proudly passed around their 2008 wedding pictures from Toronto to those of us attending their Thanksgiving dinner party; by March, Hal, the prettier of the two, had left Sam for a twink two blocks away.
What do I think? If you asked many, if not most guys if they really would want to be married, the resounding response you would get would be “Fuck, no way!” The first day same sex marriage became legal in New York State, the media reported “hundreds” of gays got hitched. Gee, wow! You know how many homosexuals live in NYC alone? Straights are moving away from marriage and living together, so why the fuck would we want to go the other way? ( I know why: pensions, social security and health benefits, rights of survivorship, but you get my point.)
Being a practical, no-nonsense fag, I’d like to point out some of the other, not so romantic realities same sex unions face.
Remember, boys, if you’re legally married and it sours, you’ve got to legally divorce. You don’t just pack up your Titan DVD’s and your toothbrush and leave. Hell, some enterprising attorneys down in Fort Lauderdale where I live are already advertising assistance with gay separations and divorces. And based on what I’ve seen with straight couples I’ve known whose marriages have gone south, that ain’t easy, nor pretty. One buddy of mine, married for over forty years – to a woman – before deciding to divorce to lead the life of a gay blade, is still waiting for his half of the money two years after papers were filed, with no minor children or convoluted investments like cattle ranches in Alaska to muddy the waters.
And let’s say you marry a guy who has a lot less assets than you and who at some point decides to run off with a hottie. With community property laws in place in most states, regardless who left who, are you ready to split the 401K you worked so hard for?
But what do I think is the ultimate irony in this messed up controversy about gay marriage? While public opinion is more and more on our side, there are still many uptight straights, driven by misguided religious convictions, who are convinced allowing gays to tie the knot would bring a Sodom and Gomorrah dissolution to our society. (Even if 10% of the population is gay and every one of us wanted marriage, that still leaves 9 out of 10 hetero adult Americans, so I don’t get the math.) Yet, the majority of straight marriages – 60% – many with kids in the equation, end in divorce.
Shouldn’t society be worried about that first?