Friday, July 21, 2017

I am certain that Austin Ruse has a point to make - I just cannot figure out what that is

Austin Ruse
Austin Ruse, head of C-Fam (an SPLC designated hate group), has an opinion post in the Washington Examiner titled: “Two years after Obergefell, no land rush on gay marriage.” Doug Mainwaring made the same assertion based on the same Gallup numbers about a month ago. According to Ruse:
Where are all the gay weddings we were promised? Here we are two years after Obergefell, the case in which the Supreme Court imposed same-sex marriage on all 50 states, without restriction. At the time, we were told gays wanted nothing more than to be able to marry each other, just like their straight friends and neighbors. And yet, the needle on gay marriage has hardly moved.
I do not know who Ruse thinks promised what. Nor do I know what possible difference it makes. He opposes marriage equality because the Catholic Church opposes marriage equality. The number of actual marriages seems irrelevant to the objection. The Supreme Court ruled based upon the legal issues in contrast to the number of people who would be affected by the ruling.
The raw numbers tell the tale. Prior to the Obergefell decision two years ago, the 7.9 percent of gays who were married would have amounted to 154,000 married gay couples. Two years later, this had grown to 10.2 percent or 198,000 married couples. Hardly the land rush we were told to expect.
Actually they are meaningless. Marriages are not reported federally but by states and municipalities. Since Obergefell many (if not most) states report marriages, period. There is no reason to separate same-sex and opposite sex marriages. According to Pew Research, at the end of 2013 there were about 170,000 married same-sex couples which is more than Ruse computes for 2015, prior to Obergefell
Consider this startling fact. There are more gays married to women than to other gays. Thirteen percent of gays are married to someone of the opposite sex.…
Gallup surveyed LGBT people, not gays. They explain the above:
According to prior research on LGBT identification, roughly half of those who self-identify as LGBT are bisexual, helping explaining the high proportion of LGBT individuals who are married to opposite-sex partners. Gallup's question does not probe specifically for whether LGBT individuals are lesbian or gay or bisexual or transgender.
The bottom line is that we don't know and it would not make a difference if we did know. We don't even know how many gay people there are, let alone the number of their marriages. This goes to an old argument made when Windsor and then Obergefell were being decided. It went something like: “Gays do not want to marry. Therefore, they should not be permitted to marry.” It did not make sense then and it does not make sense now.

Again, Obergefell v. Hodges wasn't decided on the basis of demand or statistics. Rather it was decided on the bases of Equal Protection and Due Process. The overall support for marriage equality was probably a factor and that support continues to increase.

I suspect that there is a strong correlation of support to the length of time that same-sex marriage has been legal which is telling. Some of the most ardent opponents in Massachusetts probably couldn't care less today. The effect of marriage equality is limited to the gay couples thus married. More and more people seem to realize that it is immaterial whether or not the gay couple down the street from them is married.

That was one of our primary arguments before the Supreme Court and no one has offered a shred of evidence to counter it.

Towards his conclusion:
Much of the debate in America on gay marriage has been built on fake science. There is still no scientific basis, for example, for the claim that same-sex attraction is inborn or that there is a gay gene, which was often cited in claiming that the traditional definition of marriage was per se discriminatory.
Some arguments never die. There is a mountain of evidence that sexual orientation is innate and that efforts to change sexual orientation are unproductive and possibly harmful. That, by the way, is the conclusion of every mainstream medical and counseling professional organization. Austin could be correct but I cannot recall any brief in either Windsor or Obergefell that made an argument around a gay gene. In fact, the only people who ever seem to talk about a gay gene are Christian conservatives in order to claim that it does not exist.
Moreover, the new Gallup numbers suggest that the political motivation for gay marriage was not a great demand among gays for the white-picket fence in suburbia, as originally represented. We are living in an experiment right now set in motion by the Supreme Court in 2015, and we can make this observation two years in: Same-sex marriage is legal everywhere, and gays are still more likely to be married to someone of the opposite sex.
Now, now. The Gallup data demonstrates that bisexual people are more likely to be married to someone of the opposite sex. Furthermore, for the most part same-sex marriage was effectively decided in 2013 in United States v. Windsor. By the time Obergefell came to pass only about a dozen states did not recognize same-sex marriage.

No one offered a rational, secular argument in opposition to same-sex marriage prior to 2013 and no one can make a rational, secular argument in opposition to same-sex marriage today. That will remain true five and ten years from now. Obergefell is the law of the land and that is unlikely to change.

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