This weekend my daughter was catching up on her college homework. Chapter Ten in her psychology textbook is titled “Sex and Gender.” It covers topics such as gender differences, similarities, and stereotypes. The chapter wends its way from transgender issues to sexual harassment to the glass ceiling in the workplace, the boundary beyond which women are not welcome. The book defines sexism as “differential treatment of an individual on the basis of his or her sex.”
Nowadays more than half of all women in the United States work outside the home. Although they are garnering high-profile positions in private industry, government and politics, there is one domain in which they are increasingly discriminated against and excluded: families.
Ironically, same sex marriage laws do this in the name of equality. We open our hearts and minds and definition of marriage to include two men, and in doing so we close the door to a wife in their living room, nursery, and master bedroom. We created the crass ceiling.
It’s one thing for two guys from New Jersey to love each other. It’s altogether different for society to grant these two men the status of marriage and the legal right to deprive children of a relationship with mom simply because she’s female.
Obviously two men cannot reproduce, but with the legal right to marry comes the right to adopt. If their adopted son meets and marries a like-minded dude from nearby New Yorkwhose dads commissioned him from a surrogate mother, then we could see a family tree bereft of not only mothers, but also grandmothers. On both sides. Under current law, this chauvinism can continue for generations.
Years from now young Marvin can trace his family tree and compare it with his pal Leroy. The latter has one mom and one dad, two grandmothers and two grandfathers, four great-grandmothers and four great-grandfathers. Leroy’s family tree is gender integrated and balanced.
Meanwhile, Marvin lists two dads, four grandpas, and eight great-grandfathers. His family has fourteen men and zero women; it’s gender segregated and devoid of wives, mothers, grandmothers and their feminine love.
Of course we know that children can’t actually be nurtured for nine months in a test tube by an IVF scientist, no matter how many thousands you give him. Marvin had to have a mom or he wouldn’t be here. And his parents had to have mothers as well. It’s not that Marvin doesn’t have a mom or grandmothers in his ancestry. It’s that they’ve been excluded from his family precisely because of their gender.
Man caves are fun. Man family trees…not so much.
De-gendered families exclude females not by accident, but by design. Same sex marriage legalizes gender discrimination and segregation. To be fair, these laws also allow women an equal right to segregation and the power to deprive their children of fathers.
Same sex marriage lobbyists can argue that the likelihood of entire branches being gender-segregated is slim. (I sure hope so.) But they dare not criticize the right to create gender-segregated family trees. Doing so would automatically refute their cause. After all, redefining marriage is predicated on the theory that gender diversity is unimportant in marriage. Supporting gender integration would automatically plant them on the side of pro-gender marriage.
And so SSM advocates continue to support excluding either husbands and dads or wives and mothers from the home. They consider it such an important benefit to society that they persuaded fourteen states and several countries to enact laws enabling gender segregation in families for generations.
That’s not marriage equality. That’s same sexism marriage.
Kelly Bartlett has been practicing life, love, and marriage for decades, hoping to improve her game.