Sunday, February 12, 2006

The Yawn of SSM

Bless the chilly little hearts of the delivery guys. In the blizzard, the Herald either didn't make it or was so early that it is invisible, but the Globe and Times got here and to the doorstep. We're glad we tip the carriers.

A usually enjoyable and sometimes moving Sunday Times piece is the Modern Love column. Unfortunately at first peek, today's looked grim. Its editor, Daniel Jones, was musing pre-V Day on what he has seen as trends in the letters and submissions.

He is logorrheic and far less interesting than the real-people with real stories. However, there was a nice touch on same-sex marriage. Number five in his list of ten observations is:


Critics of gay marriage predicted the unraveling of our moral fiber while some supporters went so far as to proclaim that gays might revitalize marriage in the same way they've gentrified run-down neighborhoods. But dispatches from the gay marriage front tell a far more ordinary story, that of devoted couples eager to affirm their life-long commitment, have children for whom they can provide a loving home, and claim legal rights and benefits.

Once hitched, they seem to engage in the same dull arguments about the inequities of sexual desire and domestic drudgery as hetero couples. So what's the difference? As far as I can tell, only this: Whereas today's straight mothers often face chronic criticism of their housekeeping and parental skills from their own mothers and mothers-in-law, gay fathers seem to get a pass on both, or at least are subjected to a different standard, and may be urged by their mothers to relax or even take a nap.

Just so. We have seen that theme in this blog and many other places. More and more too, we find that politicians and ministers who have come around from anti-SSM to marriage-equality thinking say that and go a bit farther. Once they see that a good marriage is just that, no more and no less, that changes everything.

1 comment:

On Lawn said...

That observation by Modern Love is notably problematic.

What is interesting to me is how that mistaken observation goes hand in hand with one that is even worse.

Perhaps in the half-shut state of dreariness your eyes are not picking up the full story.