With yesterday’s Supreme Court decision making same sex marriage legal in all fifty states, your kids probably have some questions about what this all means. Because let’s face it, it wouldn’t be summer vacation without kids whipping themselves into a frenzy over the Supreme Court and debating the impact their rulings will have. So as you’re sitting around having your morning coffee and talking with your kids about how many chores they’ll have to do before they’re allowed to really dig in to the entire 103-page decision, get ready for questions like, “So what is gay marriage?” or “Why do people even care?” and finally, “Why do those freshly married people look so happy? That’s not how you and Dad look.”
We live in Vermont so my kids have had classmates with two Dads or two Moms in practically every classroom they’ve been in since preschool. Same sex weddings are a regular feature on local photographers’ websites. And when we went down to the rally at City Hall yesterday, my kids and I were the only ones wearing rainbow-striped anything. It’s old (happy) news around here. And one day hopefully it won’t be news at all. In a related story, welcome to 2009, rest of the country! Come on in, the water is waaaaarm.
But not every place is Vermont as some of you jerks keep reminding me in February, so:
Hey, what is gay marriage?
This one’s easy. Gay marriage or same sex marriage just means that two people of the same gender can now legally get married. And that means they can also enjoy the same legal rights and protections that married men and women have had forever. Additionally, they’re now fully entitled to start bitching about the unequal division of household labor, passive aggressively walk by the pile of cat barf like they didn’t see it for the third time, and be all, “Why don’t you ever notice when I get my hair cut? You never notice anything.” It’s truly an exciting time.
One of my friends said only a man and a woman should have weddings because that’s how babies are made.
Well, you should ask your friend how his game of telephone is working out for him because that’s not how babies are made. I mean, I’m sure some babies are made at weddings, but probably not involving the bride who’s so hungry by the end of the night she’s torpedoing her pre-wedding diet by eating frosting with her hands and washing it down with tumblers of warm Chardonnay then passing out. But enough about me.
Look, penis goes in the vagina. I know you know this because I’ve seen the finger-goes-in-circle hand gesture you learned from your pals on the bus—which P.S. has been around longer than gay marriage so don’t even. That is the most basic way babies are made. The penis and vagina part, not the fingers part. You can’t get hand pregnant, it’s not a thing.
However, there’s more than one way to make a baby, as thousands of male-female couples already know. Not every man is capable of helping to make a baby and not every woman is capable of conceiving or carrying a baby. Some babies come into this world thanks to sperm donors or egg donors or surrogates and some families become families through foster parenting or adoption. And if you think I’m going to walk you through all of those options right now then you obviously don’t know how little alcohol I have left in the house.
No one has told those male-female couples that those aren’t the “right” ways to make a baby. Or maybe they have, but I hate to even think that’s a possibility. Loving couples who want to have and raise children and invest in them emotionally is something the world needs. And anyone who assumes that male-female couples are the only ones suited to the job of raising children simply because they have a penis and a vagina that fit together should take a tiptoe through the tabloids and get their heads out of their child delivery holes.
To sum up: the next time you see your friend tell him that the only reason two people should get married is so they have an excuse to buy lots of blue mason jars and make oh so whimsical signs with chalk and old wood that’s so splintery it’ll send at least one wedding guest to Urgent Care. And for love. Of course.
Why should I “ask the nearest hippie”?
Don’t worry, Crazy Uncle Antonin Scalia just had too much to drink at dinner. Next question.
Why do people even care?
Oh, such a good question. Great question. Why do people ever care about anything? Who gives a poop about what I’m wearing today or what neighborhood we live in or who I love or who you will love one day or why. People need to get hobbies. Unfortunately, some people’s hobbies are acting like dicks. Actually that’s an insult to penises. Lot of penis talk today, as it turns out. Or as I like to refer to it, “Any day in this country ever.”
People tend to get in each other’s business when they think that that’s their special job. Like Defender of Marriages. Or Bouncer in Heaven. Or We Still All Remember What You Did Clarence Thomas. But it’s no one’s job to tell people who they can love. And if all those busybodies really need something to busy their bodies with, how about they focus on addressing the fact that more than 79,000 people have been killed by guns since Sandy Hook. Want to talk about something that goes against God’s will and the natural order of things? There. You. Go.
I heard someone say that letting gay people get married ruins everything that marriage stands for.
Oh ho, that one’s my favorite. Here’s a quick analogy for you. You’re over here, you’re into Legos. You love Legos! Legos are your favorite, they make you happy, you want to bring them everywhere. But as it turns out, the boy across the street doesn’t love Legos, he loves racecars. Racecars are his favorite, they make him happy, he takes them everywhere. He’s not asking you to live with his racecars and you do not at all need to play with racecars ever. They are not your thing. Are his racecars taking away from the happiness you feel over your Legos? Of course they aren’t. That doesn’t make any sense. One has nothing to do with the other.
Maybe you think that racecars are wrong and everyone should love Legos instead. But that’s actually your problem, not his. Because that kid never even liked Legos and he certainly isn’t going to start loving them just because you tell him to. He loves what he loves. And you love what you love. And God I hope that that made sense because I’m deep into this thing now and I can’t get out.
I guess my point is that the relationship two people have, regardless of their gender, has nothing to do with any relationships two other people have. Unless of course one relationship involves someone from that other relationship and in that case they all get their own show on Bravo.
Why do those freshly married people look so happy? That’s not how you and Dad look.
We’re tired. FROM ANSWERING ALL OF YOUR QUESTIONS. Life changes the longer you’re married, you go from being full of energy and cartoon hearts and drinking the blood of young virgins (look it up) to planning a wedding to living out your life together, and really, it can be crazy and great or as boring as dirt but it’s all yours. But the thing is, we didn’t have to fight to do any of it. So we have no right to be as tired as we are. And now everyone has the right to be exactly this lame.
The only thing that changed for us yesterday is that we can stop calling it same sex marriage or gay marriage and we can just call it marriage. It’s marriage. Same as for everyone, including your not-always-looking-happy and not-drinking-the-champagne and whoa-is-it-10-at-night-already-it’s-getting-late parents.
So if it was a Supreme Court case, who won?
Easy. Love did.
Illustration by Scott Lenhardt