Just thinking out loud here for a few minutes. I'm hearing this criticism of heterosexual marriage from the gay rights lobby and I think it is very legitimate: why should same-sex partners, committed for life, be denied certain benefits while flash-in-the-pan "marriages" of Britney Spears, the Kardashians, and the like be afforded those benefits? Good question.
I've also noticed that advocates of natural marriage--like the folks at the Family Research Council-- use quotation marks around gay "marriage," like so. I do the same. It seems to me that to use the terminology of same-sex "marriage" without reservation is to somehow accept what the terms imply. And I'm like a lot of people in that I'll believe in same-sex "marriage" just as soon as you can show me a square circle.
But I'm wondering if people in this camp are being fair in how we use nuptial terms. If you believe that marriage is an indissoluble union of man and woman, how do you describe the partners of your divorced friends? If you refuse to call a woman the wife of another woman, do you apply the same principles to someone heterosexual who has "married" twice? I'm seeing some hypocrisy here.
It's such a tricky issue because I want to be true to my convictions and also be kind and not appear rude or hurt anyone's feelings. I think this is going to be a challenge for social conservatives in the future, to be as sensitive to our gay friends as we are to our divorced friends. Or maybe as honest to our divorced friends as we are to our gay friends?