Over at NRO's The Corner, columnist Maggie Gallagher is compelled to present five predictions about the short term effects of same-sex marriage in those states which recognize it. I'll address her predictions one at a time.
(1) In gay-marriage states, a large minority people committed to traditional notions of marriage will feel afraid to speak up for their views, lest they be punished in some way.
Bizarre. "Punished in some way"? What way? She doesn't say; I don't think even she knows.
In any event, looking at the health care debate, I don't see a lot of conservative people actually cowed lately from expressing (loudly) minority views.
(2) Public schools will teach about gay marriage.
I read/hear this a lot from conservatives. It comes up not only with gay marriages, but generally with homosexuality — these things will be "taught" in public schools.
Everytime I hear this concern, I try to envision what such a public school class would look like. In what class would "gay marriage" be taught? English? And what would be said?
It seems to me that "gay marriage" might be taught in a high school civics or current affairs course. But what's so bad about that? Students would be taught that some states recognize gay marriage, and some don't. Honestly — what more can be said on the subject?
What does Maggie Gallagher think will be taught? How to have a "gay marriage"? Praise for gay marriage? Really?
(3) Parents in public schools who object to gay marriage being taught to their children will be told with increasing public firmness that they don't belong in public schools and their views will not be accomodated in any way.
Goes to my point above. What will these parents be complaining about?
(4) Religous institutions will face new legal threats (especially soft litigation threats) that will cause some to close, or modify their missions, to avoid clashing with the government's official views of marriage (which will include the view that opponents are akin to racists for failing to see same-sex couples as married).
This is just plain fear-mongering. First of all, a couple of states that recognize same-sex marriages explcitly carve out exceptions for religious institutions — i.e., no church can be forced to perform gay marriages. The states that don't explicitly have this provision are protected by the First Amendment. The ACLU will even back the churches, should they ever be threatened with a lawsuit. (And by the way, a lawsuit threat from who?)
By the way, you can't sue a person or a religious instutution for clashing with the government's view of marriage. What makes Gallagher think you can sue someone for their opinions, much less their ideolofgical beliefs? I mean, you can't sue a person for being racist, can you?
(5) Support for the idea "the ideal for a child is a married mother and father" will decline.
Well, this is probably true, although support for that has been in decline for decades. And the decline has nothing to do with "gay marriages". It has to do with the fact that the law doesn't criminalize (nor should it) single parent families.
When not being obscure or objectionable or just plain paranoid, Gallagher's predictions seem to be nothing more than merely saying "if SSM is acceptable, then more people will come to accept it."
In a subsequent post, Maggie Gallagher adds a sixth prediction —
I would like to offer a sixth prediction: Only a small minority of gay couples will seek gay marriages where they are available.
This is relevant to one of the core arguments now made for gay marriage: that it will help gay couples and their children achieve stability, monogamy, and (possibly) sexual fidelity.
I predict that after an initial burst of enthusiasm driven by its symbolic availability, relatively few gay couples will pursue marriage, because it makes so little sense for them.
How few? Oh, let's pull a standard out of our hats: After five to ten years (Steve can pick) after gay marriage, less than half of all gay couples in a given state will be married. I suspect it will be less than 25 percent. Let's find out.
This is probably the most offensive of Gallagher's predictions.
What she is saying is that gays won't marry because it "makes so little sense for them". And why not? Because gays, as we all know, have no interest in sexual fidelity. They're just randy little whores.