Brian Brown of National Organization for Marriage persists in the implausible assertion that those of us who have worked so hard for years for the right of loving gay and lesbian couples to marry are somehow abandoning marriage. Here are highlights from his latest update:
Dear Marriage Supporter,
The news this week is tough. I'm not going to sugar coat it.
In Rhode Island, all five Republican state senators joined the Democrats in the state senate to pass a same-sex marriage bill. It now goes back to the House which had previously passed a gay marriage bill and the governor has promised to sign it.
The Rhode Island bill does not create a new category of marriage for same-sex couples. Rather, it completely redefines marriage for all people in Rhode Island....
Same-sex marriage is not just an attempt to help ordinary gay people live their private lives as they choose—it is part of a push for an aggressive new public norm that affects us all....
For the politicians who refused to let the people of Rhode Island vote on marriage, this is not over!...
We intend to make sure that every Rhode Islander knows how their policymakers voted on this critical issue. We will hold the politicians accountable for their votes.
Republicans, especially, will have to answer for abandoning marriage—a core position of the GOP platform. In New York, when the dust cleared, 3 out of the 4 Republican state senators who betrayed their constituents and voted for gay marriage were no longer in office.
Brown and his allies are desperate to portray themselves as the true victims of intolerance. This can only emerge from a deeply held sense of entitlement to special status and special privileges from which some group of "others" must be excluded. But no matter how often and how brazenly they try to disguise the discrimination they demand, one couple's marriage is not in any way devalued by other couples being afforded the same status. Brown's crusade is not about mere disagreement. It is built on and sustained by lies.
One thing Brown says, though, is true: Given the increasing radicalization of the GOP, Republican primary voters can indeed often punish Republican office holders who vote for inclusion and equal protection for same-sex couples. Unfortunately for the GOP, this only puts their party more and more at odds with broader public opinion. The ongoing, aggressive self-marginalization of the Republican Party is like a slow, massive traffic accident.