Sunday, August 30, 2009

Wedding Song

Oh, can't you see that you were born to stand by my side
And I was born to be with you, you were born to be my bride,
You're the other half of what I am, you're the missing piece
And I love you more than ever with that love that doesn't cease.

You turn the tide on me each day and teach my eyes to see,
Just bein' next to you is a natural thing for me
And I could never let you go, no matter what goes on,
'Cause I love you more than ever now that the past is gone.
-Bob Dylan

Don't get too excited, this post has nothing to do with me getting engaged (you'll be some of the first to know if it ever does happen), but it does have to do with people's right to get married.
You guys know me by now- I love tv, I love cooking, so I love tv cooking shows and this last week on Top Chef they had a wedding challenge and some of the gay contestants were upset by it. On one hand I thought the one girl was being a bit melodramatic about the whole thing as she, herself, even said she knew there would probably be a wedding challenge. On the other hand I thought she had a right to be upset and offended to have to participate in a wedding challenge when she doesn't have to option of getting married to the person she loves right now.

I'm all for gay marriage. I don't think you choose who you fall in love with and I don't think by letting gay people be equal before the law that that takes away from the so called "sanctity" of marriage (give me a break, by the way). I just don't see any kind of love between two consenting adults as ever being something wrong or bad or evil or whatever. As for the people who somehow justify their stance as "If we let gay people get married...what next, people and animals?" I don't see your logic. As far as I can tell this discussion is still about two adult HUMANS wanting to be married. I would love to see if this kind of argument was used back in the day when mixed race marriages were illegal...i.e. "If you want to marry outside your race, what next marrying outside your species?!?" BULLSHIT!

But back to Top Chef, their headchef Tom Colicchio responded to the contestants' frustration by releasing this statement, which says how I feel about the whole thing much more elegantly than I could ever put it:

"I’m going to go out on a limb and say a few words about same-sex marriage: First of all, part of the problem with the issue is that it is framed by opponents as a discussion of whether gay people should get special rights. This is specious – yes, special legislation or court decisions grant them the right to wed in a particular state, however this is done to ensure that they share equal protection under the law by finally being able to avail themselves of the same rights as everyone else. They are not seeking special treatment, just equitable treatment. Second, religion has no business being part of the discussion. When a couple is wed in a house of worship, the officiant may be performing a religious rite, but as far as the law is concerned, that officiant has been authorized to perform a civil function, plain and simple. And even were same-sex marriage to be legalized by the state, no one would be holding a gun to the heads of the clergy to require them to perform a ceremony that their faith or personal creed does not condone. Just as some rabbis would not perform my marriage to my wife because I wasn’t Jewish, clergy can decline performing same-sex marriages; gay couples can either find clergy willing to officiate or can be wed in a civil setting. The idea that religious leaders are continuing to shape state law is just wrong. The institution of marriage should be available to all. The idea that you can have a life-long partner and not make decisions for them in a hospital, not share in insurance benefits, not automatically have parental rights unless you are the birth parent, is just flat-out wrong."

( where I got the quote and the video of the upset Top Chef contestant if you haven't seen it)

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