Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Gay Marriage


I watched the second half of the Nevada Day episode of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip last night.

Yes, I know, that was the episode from last week. I have TiVo, I can bend time.

Anyway, one of the threads of the storyline was that one of the characters, Harriet, played by Sarah Paulson, is an evangelical christian, and was asked in an interview how she felt about gay marriage. Her answer was:

I said, “The Bible says it’s a sin.” I also said, “Judge not, lest ye be judged,” and that it was something for smarter people than me to decide.


She's been on the receiving end of some fallout about that comment, ironically from both sides of the issue. She was confronted by some gay men outside of a restaurant that resulted in an assault charge for one of the characters, and she was un-invited to a christian event because the organizers don't believe that she made a strong enough statement against gay marriage.

What I'm writing this post about, though, is how the writers chose to handle the issue through one of the other characters. Matt, played by Matthew Perry, is the head writer of Studio 60 and used to be in a relationship with Harriet. Though they've broken up, it's obvious that they're not over each other yet. The big problem is that neither of them can understand why the other thinks or acts the way they do.

Matt's been choking on this whole issue and is trying to reconcile the fact that Harriet really believes the things she's saying. Early in the episode, they have a conversation in Matt's office that goes like this:

HARRIET
You honestly think I’m a homophobe?

MATT
Harriet, I really can’t –

HARRIET
You honestly think –

MATT
Yes, yes, I do, and you know why? ‘Cause you are. Now go to work.

HARRIET
I said the Bible says it –

MATT
Yeah, yeah.

HARRIET
Don’t “yeah, yeah” me! And it seems to me every Democrat on a ballot answers the same question by talking about civil unions and leaving it up to the states and not wanting to –

MATT
I don’t need any reminding that my party is full to brimming of panderers and mediocrity.

HARRIET
What’s wrong with civil unions? And why shouldn’t we –

MATT
‘Cause there’s no way to the end of that sentence without saying that homosexual love is something less than heterosexual love, and watching you fall over it makes me want to hit you over the head with Liberace!


Later on, he confronts her again, this time asking:

But let me ask you something, how is my marriage, your marriage, or anyone’s marriage even marginally affected by the gay couple two doors down also getting married? And if it is, how does that become their problem?


I've been asking this question for decades. Not just since the neo-conservatives have made it into a political issue, but ever since I was a little girl and wondered why it was that my uncles couldn't get married. Banning homosexual marriage didn't make sense to me then, and it doesn't make sense to me now.

I've been listening to the "other" side explain their concerns, and I've got to tell you that none of them has come close to convincing me of the grave threat that gay marriage poses to marriage in general and American society in particular. Really, most of what I've heard on the opposing side of the gay marriage issue has been utterly ludicrous; I remember once, a man called in to the Diane Rhem show to voice his concerns. Essentially, his message was that if we let "the gays" marry, pretty soon people will want to marry their sisters or aunts or brothers, their dogs, their toasters! It will bring about the apocalypse!

Love is love, regardless of what form it takes. Marriage is hard, glorious, soul-fulfilling work, and every successful marriage is a bright spot in the Universe. I say, let there be more light.

6 Comments:

Blogger The Grammar Snob said...

Amen, sister!!! Well said and don't you just LOVE how Aaron Sorkin can make more sense than half of the people I voted for earlier this month?!

3:47 PM  
Blogger Mrs.Chili said...

There are SO many great Sorkin lines. I could - and maybe WILL - do an "I Love Aaron Sorkin Week" on Blue Door! Hey! Instant NaBloPoMo content!!

3:57 PM  
Blogger gerry rosser said...

The "conservatives" or "neo-cons" or whatever the heck they style themselves have made great hay by bringing fringe issues to the forefront so people will ignore the fat that unless you are rich or warlike, they don't give a s**t about you and won't work on any issues which might make life better for your. The gay marriage thingy is one of them, along with abortion, flag-burning, and other such stuff. (My apologies if you are virulently anti-abortion, but my point is still valid as to how the party of the rich and powerful plays the issue).

4:49 PM  
Blogger The Grammar Snob said...

I am all over Aaron Sorkin Week!
J: All I'm saying is, if you were in an accident, I wouldn't stop to get a beer.
D: If you were in an accident, I wouldn't stop for red lights.

5:12 PM  
Blogger Kizz said...

That Liberace comment made me laugh out loud in my living room, probably my favorite line of the ep.

Oh and Grammar Snob that red lights conversation is one I replay in my dreams, it makes me melt.

On another note, Chili, GET OUT OF MY HEAD. I came over here right after posting about the Sork.

7:08 PM  
Anonymous Glennia said...

Hello there. Found you through the Nablopomorando thingie. What a great posting! My sentiments exactly. Cheers! Good luck finishing the NaBlo--we're in the home stretch now.

6:37 PM  

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