Monday, January 30, 2012

Gay Marriage Can Also Equal Gay Divorces

Gay marriage is, in many ways, the leading civil rights issue of our era.  States are slowly but surely joining the movement to ratify gay marriage, and it is of course a very hot-button issue.  I am not a hot button issue kind of guy, but the fact that the gay marriage bill in Washington is ready to come up for a vote does involve one issue that I am always thinking about.  While the consequence of gay marriage is obvious, the logical conclusion is not: that gay marriage will also mean gay divorce, the same as any other marriage that ends in divorce.  Looking at divorce rates across the country, it is clear that while all states have had a reduction in divorce (likely due to the recession), gay marriage also means gay divorce.  And just like heterosexual marriage, same sex couples do not like to face the fact that the honeymoon does not last forever and divorce may happen.  The numbers for many states are still too recent to fully break down how the numbers for divorce are within same sex couples.  But the fact that gay marriage is such a hot button issue, with nary a whisper of gay divorce, is avoiding the issue.  Marriages end in divorce.  Custody battles get ugly.  And facing that fact will make the debate about gay marriage one about practical realities, rather than just theoretcial discussions about morality.  Gay marriage is a snowball gathering momentum, and we need to start looking at the effects rather than trying to push the snowball back up the hill.

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