The result of the ConCon yesterday, while satisfying some here, has left a bitter taste in the mouths of a lot of people. While this proposed Constitutional amendment is virtually certain to die, if anyone thinks that this issue is going to die anytime soon, I am afraid to say that you are sadly mistaken. The legislatures inaction on this measure has done nothing to extinguish this as an issue in Massachusetts
That being said, I propose an idea (some may call it radical) to put this issue to rest once and for all. Eliminate the word marriage from state law, and call everything domestic partnerships or civil unions or some other term. It doesnt matter if it is between one man and one woman or two men or two women, dont call any of it marriage. I could be wrong, but I am fairly certain that this debate is over nothing but a word. When you break down the rights that are conferred unto currently married couples, and you ask people should they be extended to gay couples, you get a very favorable response. A solid majority of people think that gay couples should get the same rights as already married couples, but the hang up I feel comes from calling it marriage. Marriage is a term that has significant religious meaning for many people, and many of those people are truly good people, not demagogues like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. For many of these people, to allow the union of two homosexuals to be called marriage greatly demeans the religious significance of that term. It has been said in this debate that the church has no business in state affairs, well what business does the state have in hijacking a word that has deep meaning to many faithful? So instead of having this debate over nothing but one word, why not just leave marriages where they belong, in the church, and in respect to the state define everything as civil unions or domestic partnerships.?