Wednesday, August 1, 2012


I'm not going to eat a sandwich today because one side wants me to. I'm not going to not eat a sandwich because the other side wants me to. It strikes me that there's something vulgar about the way fast food has become the battlefield upon which we do battle over an issue of civil rights, so I'm not going to play that game.

This is what I'm going to do:

I'm going to fervently hope that my gay and lesbian friends achieve the right to civil marriage.

I'm going to loudly advocate, using my little platforms, that that right be extended to them.

I am going to vote for politicians who agree with me on this issue, and against those who don't.

And I'm going to donate money, when I have it, to organizations that work to secure that right.

Finally, I'm going to demand that my elected officials respect the rights of those people who disagree with me, because that, too, is the right thing to do.

I ... won't participate in a gaudy display of face stuffing or tribalistic chest-beating over this. People are welcome to put their dollars where there values are; I understand and affirm that. But there's something about this Chick-fil-A brouhaha that trivializes the bottom-line issue: Who gets to have their relationships recognized--and with that recognition, access to a host of legal rights and institutions that make the coupled life so much easier to live. I believe that my gay and lesbian friends should have that right. And I believe that many--though not all--of my friends who feel otherwise will someday feel embarrassed by today's events.

UPDATE: Having just published this piece, I hit upon what I find disconcerting about the great Chick-fil-A support day: It's the display of giddy joy and pleasure being displayed by so many in their efforts to withhold such rights from their fellow Americans. I understand the arguments against gay marriage, and why some folks hold those beliefs: I don't begrudge them that. But I guess I wish it could be done soberly. Instead, it's devolved into team-spirit phallus-waving. And I am deeply dismayed by it.

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