« The Daily Dose

Gays deserve equal treatment, but don't redefine marriage

by Greg Belfrage

The anticipated lawsuit against South Dakota's ban on same sex marriage has finally been filed. Six couples filed a federal lawsuit yesterday in Sioux Falls.

I've spent a great deal of time reflecting on this issue, especially over the past few months. I have gay friends and colleagues, as we all do, and have been empathetic to their concerns. Its been well documented that same sex couples face disparities in health insurance coverage, taxation, hospital visitation rights and more.

I believe those inequities should and must be corrected, which is why I support civil unions and domestic partnerships. Gay and lesbian partners should have the same governmental and legal rights as heterosexual married couples. I completely and fully support the equal treatment of gays and lesbians, as individuals and as couples.

Sadly, this will not satisfy the larger gay and lesbian community. They believe anything less than full marriage equates to second class status.

Marriage can only occur between one man and one woman. Anything else is not marriage, regardless of whether love exists in the relationship.

I may refer to an orange as an apple, but it is still an orange. I may even convince you and thousands of others to refer to the orange as an apple, but it still looks like an orange and peels like an orange. They are simply not the same.

If we begin to redefine marriage, it will never stop.

Polygamists are waiting in the wings, eager and ready to redefine marriage to include multiple partners. Gay rights advocates say that won't happen and have opposed marriage for polygamists.

The hypocrisy of that position is crystal clear. Lines must also be drawn somewhere, otherwise we'll have brothers marrying their sisters.

It is a sure bet that today's redefinition of marriage will eventually include polygamy.

Please note that I've not mentioned immorality. It is not my place to judge, especially when my moral choices have often fallen short of my own expectations and beliefs.

It is in our nation's best interest to preserve the traditional definition of marriage, while also insuring that relationships between gays and lesbians receive equal treatment under the law.

I believe we can do both.

Greg Belfrage @belfrageshow is heard 6am-9am on KELO 1320 AM and 107.9 FM. Greg can be contacted at greg.belfrage@mwcradio.com.