- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 30, 2004

With much still to be decided, the homosexual “marriage” debate reached new heights in 2004, starting with President Bush’s State of the Union Address. “Activist judges … have begun redefining marriage by court order, without regard for the will he people and their eqqqlected representatives,” he said. “On an issue of such great consequence, the people’s voice must be heard.” A few weeks later, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that homosexuals have a state constitutional right to “marry.” Shortly thereafter, the mayor of San Francisco, in a particularly disturbing display of civil disobedience, began “marrying” homosexuals, an act a mayor in upstate New York quickly copied. As Mr. Bush forewarned, the public backlash against such reckless disregard for the legal process has been swift and politically brutal.

At this stage, it is worth asking what antagonizes the American people more: Is it the notion that homosexuals can get “married,” or the way in which public officials have allowed them to do so? Advocates of homosexual “marriage” would prefer the debate to focus on the former. If it’s simply a matter of old-fashioned thinking, then public officials have a “moral” duty to act as righteously as they please. Clearly, this helps explain why they chose to run roughshod over any legal impediments, believing their cause to reside on the same pedestal as the abolitionists’ and civil-rights activists’ of America’s past. It has proven to be a tactical blunder and a conceit, to say nothing of a moral misjudgment.

The fact is that a majority of Americans, red- and blue-staters alike, disapprove of homosexual “marriage.” Yet Mr. Bush’s call for a Federal Marriage Amendment in February was in response to the activists’ illegal tactics, as were the 11 state constitutional amendments banning homosexual “marriage” that passed in the election. Advocates of homosexual “marriage” underestimated public support for traditional marriage. Perhaps they will learn the right lessons from it.

It also could be too late. With the institution of marriage under threat, the people’s voice has been heard. Heading into the new year, we urge policy-makers to continue seeking practical policy solutions to preserve and protect marriage as the union between a man and a woman.

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