A Modest North Carolina Proposal By: Joshua Chamberlain Posted: May 9, 2012
The citizens of North Carolina recently voted to ratify an amendment to their state constitution that, in effect, bans gay marriage. One particularly accurate observer wrote, “Usually constitutional amendments expand freedoms. This one limits them.” Since the folks in North Carolina seem to be confused about how the concepts of “freedom” and “equality” lose their luster when not everyone is “free” or “equal,” I started thinking about how the argument might be framed in way that would appeal to their more narrowly defined sense of right and wrong.
So, here are the talking points I would use to remind the citizens of North Carolina why they should, if they want to avoid being hypocritical, abolish the recently passed amendment before it does real damage to their standing as true conservatives.
1. Gay marriage would create more governmental revenue
For California alone, a 2010 study said that, excluding the hundreds of millions of dollars that gay couples would add to local economies in the form of food and materials for the celebrations and the thousands of jobs the increased wedding traffic would create, it would also produce tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue for the state.
Since the same people who oppose gay marriage also oppose raising taxes, they are faced with a conundrum: allow equal rights to all citizens and bring in more money without raising taxes, or lose money while denying people freedom. The choice seems pretty simple to me, but that’s only because I choose to look at things rationally. Win-win.
2. Gay marriage would open up more homes for unwanted babies
Riddle of the day: What would a supporter of the North Carolina amendment prefer: for an unwanted pregnancy be aborted, or for the resulting child to be adopted by gay parents? That question is enough to make their small-minded heads explode.
When push comes to shove, my guess is that they will cling to the anti-abortion stance above all others, even if it opens up the possibility that monogamous gay people might – GASP! – raise children in a stable home. Open up more willing, loving homes for the otherwise unwanted children? Sounds pretty good to me.
Yet again, the results are good for everyone: equality for gay people, and willing adopters for non-aborted pregnancies. Win-win.
3. Gay marriage would mean less gay sex
In general, people like the North Carolina voters are not scared of gay people. Further, ask any of the voters, and they will tell you that they do not hate gay people at all.
They do, however, hate gay sex.
These people are absolutely terrified of the concept of gay sex. Well, gay marriage would solve that problem because the amount of gay sex would be drastically reduced if gay people were allowed to get married. I would guess that most of the crotchety baby-boomers who voted for this bill will tell you, if they answer honestly, that they haven’t had sex with their spouses in years. Why would it be any different for gay people?
It would also allow the voters to think less about gay sex. Any time there a televised protest, it is yet another reminder that gay people have sex. A vote for equal marriage rights means equality for gay people, and gay sex out of the heads of the voters. Win-win.
Now, if these three talking points do not sway people, there is a third step that people can take. While drastic, this measure would have the added benefit of providing a religious twist to the matter. We all know how much the North Carolina voters would like that.
4. Abolish Marriage Completely
The first step is to quote The Bible. This seems like a no-brainer, since they do it all the time. The great part about that particular text, however, is that it can be used to support pretty much anything. Over the years, it has been used to support slavery, institutionalized racism, war, murder, and any other number of other wonderful events and/or policies.
The important part of this approach, then, is to not use The Bible to support gay marriage. That would be silly. Instead, use it to support the complete abolishment of marriage. It says explicitly in The Bible that Jesus was never married. The writers of the book actually went out of their way to hammer that point home. Heck, The DaVinciCode’s entire premise was based on the heretical idea that Jesus might have been married. This is important stuff!
Since North Carolinians have made clear that they want to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, what better way than to renounce marriage all together? This would have the added benefit of putting everyone on an equal playing field. After all, equality is the goal. Win-win.
I feel like these talking points might help the North Carolinians (and others who share their views) look at the issue from another angle. Then again, it might just be ridiculous to say that another angle is needed in the first place. You be the judge.