One of my Facebook friends posted the following:
The libertarian in me agrees with a lot of the post. I’d like government to stop playing nanny to people. It would make for smaller, cheaper, and less intrusive government, not to mention more individual freedom and personal responsibility.
But, as the Sesame Street song used to say, one of these things is not like the other one: gay marriage.
I’m not arguing against gay marriage in this post. I just want to point out that it doesn’t belong in list of “rights” on the poster, because it’s not a personal behavior. To be equivalent to the other points on the list, the first question should read as follows: “Don’t like homosexual sex? Don’t engage in it.”
The fact is that marriage is not a private act or behavior, it’s a public one and one, moreover, in which the state has a significant interest. Stable marriages are good for a state and the children of those stable marriages are a necessity for a country’s future. Analogizing gay marriage to other individual acts that can be done in the privacy of ones own home or on ones own property or in a private club is a false equivalence.
Having said that, if the state feels that gay marriage is a virtue that will benefit society, the state can then advance gay marriage. (Or, if it takes my advice, get out of the marriage business, leaving marriage to religious institutions, and legislating civil unions that provide the greatest benefit for the state.) Just don’t pretend that gay sex and gay marriage are the same thing, because they’re not.
Incidentally, if that was my poster, I would have added one more thing: “Don’t like guns? Don’t own one.”