I consider myself a rather lucky person. While some of what life has shown me has not been the brightest, happy chance and the miracles of improbability have given me many things to be thankful for. Last week one such happy coincidence left me and many others smiling. On Tuesday, June 26th, I married the lovely Tina Wendy Marie Page. On that same day within hours of my marriage, the Supreme Court made the landmark declaration that the nefarious Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. Of course, the striking down of DOMA had no impact on my ability to enter into matrimony, to the dismay of so many conservative pundits that would have it that a re-defining of marriage would destroy the institution outright. I didn't even see a single ball of flaming wrath come down that day, as Pat Robertson warned us to prepare for. Maybe Jesus wept, but his tears didn't land on me.
While my celebrations have kept me happily distracted, the news of the end of DOMA has sparked delightfully amusing fears in the bitter hearts and closed minds of many. The death of DOMA has the natural consequence of our federal government being bound to recognize any lawful marriage, regardless of the genders of each spouse. This means same-sex spouses in the military are now allowed to have access to all benefits afforded to heterosexuals. David Barton, the Liar for Jesus himself, is fighting a fierce internal spiritual battle over this news. He is distraught beyond console and fears that now that our nations military must give equal rights to that group of human beings he hates with such a passion, the ranks of the Department of Defense will be flooded with gays who want to be married.
I'm yet to fully comprehend his qualms with this ludicrous prediction. Does he just not want to have any gay blood spilled in combat? Perhaps he is afraid of emasculation. If thousands of gay men and women are willing to commit themselves to the many sacrifices the military life requires, what does that say about him who never had the courage to do such a thing? Poor David.
Not every conservative is viewing this as a loss though. On a recent episode of The Five on Fox News, Greg Gutfeld posited that this is in fact "a huge conservative victory!" He claims to be happy that rightwingers are now able to impose marriage on homosexual couples. This way, they are forced into what he claims is a morally superior way of life. That's right, a Fox News bobble-head has identified gay marriage as a moral institution. It's a strange turn, perhaps he was being sarcastic, decide for yourself.
The other source of Gutfeld's glee is his belief that the civil liberties of LGBT Americans can no longer be used in political discourse. Now, he supposes, we are free from the burden of this issue and "need to move on to real challenges in this world" (because marriage equality wasn't really a challenge...). His real challenge is the danger of Muslim Americans infiltrating our government and gaining ground on their evil empirical plan of world domination. While Gutfeld viewed the end of DOMA as an opportunity to re-kindle an Islamaphobic frenzy, Mark Krikorian offered a slightly different slant on the events in a tweet: "Post-Doma: Problems will arise when polygamy is legalized, as it must be. Then spousal immigration from Muslim world will balloon." So there we have it. DOMA is gone and some conservatives are...happy? Not because our country has made a huge step forward in the defense of liberty for a massive segment of our population, but because now they suspect we will join forces in a bi-partisan fear of Muslims. I certainly did not see that one coming.
I suppose at the end of all this I have one more thing to be thankful for. I still have a beautiful wife, a bright future (not to mention a contract with a stellar literary agent), great friends, and so much more. On top of all that our country's conservative leaders have solidified their steadfast march into obscurity without even needing a nudge. What a beautiful life.