Why Can't Civil Union Be Seen as a Gigantic Leap Rather Than Not Enough
The Huffington Post just reported an historic civil union legislation that passed in the Illinois House of Representatives. This is Big! Very big, but I fear that many in the gay community will not see it as enough of a step in the right direction to applaud it as loudly as I believe it ought to be applauded.
I have been a proponent of civil union from the beginning. I never understood the tactic taken by the gay community organizers. It seems to me that gay men and women would be in a far better state today had the community rallied around the perks of a civil contract rather than go after the exactly equal right of marriage.
i would much prefer being able to leave my money to my partner, have the right to see him if he is hospitalized, have the right to claim his body if he dies in an accident and be able to share my social security and my retirements benefits and health benefits than to hold a piece of parchment that declares me "married."
I have thought for the beginning of the arguments that i wanted my rights more than I wanted to be married. And I think if as a group be would have clamored for civil rights rather that the right to marry--the whole thing would be over by now.
You see, marriage has been seen as a Sacrament for thousands of years. Marriage holds a certain historical significance that might make certain straight couples feel like we are taking something away from them. But a civil union is a business contract and as such would have so many fewer emotional constraints that have to be hurdled. I want my equal right, but I do not need the word marriage as long as I am permitted like every other adult to engage in a contract that contains, promises, vows, and responsibilities and obligations.Continued on the next page