What's Love Got To Do With It
Marriage may have its benefits, but SETH MICHAEL DONSKY wonders whether the struggle for same-sex marriage is really about equal rights—or just validation.
THE CAST OF Hair was late. Instead of palpable political unrest, the tardy Broadway belters caused more anxiety in the crowd than anything else.When the young, attractive cast of men and women did arrive, they sang “Let the Sunshine In.” It’s got to be the first time in history that a free-love anthem was used to endorse the institution of marriage. That’s right: Instead of angry, fist-pumping protest, the love that dare not speak its name now holds concert rallies in the middle of Midtown.
The Love, Peace & Marriage Equality Rally took place on May 17 on Sixth Avenue and West 45th Street in Manhattan. It was ostensibly a political rally to encourage people to call their State Senators and demand that they support a bill, currently before the New York State Senate, that would allow New Yorkers to enter into civil marriage with a same-sex partner.
The marriage equality movement’s focus is primarily on civil injustice. But no throngs of lesbian parents with uninsured children were in attendance that day. Nor were there obvious masses of long-term, loving, committed middle-aged couples legitimately concerned about such things as inheritance taxes, social security benefits or hospital visitation rights. Instead, hundreds of mostly young, gay men (and a few lesbians) smiled and sang along. Some were even lovingly coupled up.
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