Gay Marriage

America Loves Gay Marriage (and Weed)

A new poll shows even a majority of Republicans now support same-sex marriage.

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Support for same-sex marriage in the United States has reached a record high of 70 percent, according to a new Gallup poll, conducted in May.

For the first time, support for same-sex marriage among Republicans has passed the 50 percent threshold, jumping all the way up to 55 percent.

Support for same-sex marriage has been steadily increasing since Gallup started asking about it in 1997. When Gallup first asked, support was at just 27 percent. In just a quarter of a century, the numbers have reversed entirely. Support continues to grow among all age groups.

It's a wonderful reminder, during Pride Month, of how quickly life has gotten better for LGBT people in America. It's a win for liberty because it's a result not of government mandates but of people genuinely and honestly changing their minds, realizing that allowing gay people to define their own relationships and families is not some threat to society. The growth in support started well before the Supreme Court mandated in 2015 that the federal government and states recognize same-sex marriage and, as Jonathan Rauch noted in Reason in 2018, tracked with Americans slowly changing their minds about the morality of same-sex relationships as well.

In fact, you can't even tell when that ruling came down from looking at polling data. The Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges probably didn't cause greater numbers of Americans to support same-sex marriage; it merely reflected what Americans had already come to conclude—that the government had no legitimate reason to treat same-sex marriages differently from heterosexual ones. It was the logical outcome once people by and large concluded that homosexuality was not a moral threat after all.

Support for legalizing marijuana is just a couple of points behind gay marriage. Gallup's poll from 2020 has support at 68 percent. Republicans in the most recent polling remain below the 50 percent threshold. Only 48 percent support legalization, but it did cross that threshold in two previous polls, only to decline.

Marijuana has taken a much longer time to reach this point. The harsh drug war Americans were sold kept support for marijuana legalization below 30 percent all the way until the end of the 20th century.

As many at Reason have previously noted, state experimentation through the mechanism of federalism has played a major role in shifting public opinion toward accepting both same-sex marriage and recreational marijuana use. In each case, a handful of states led the way. Citizens in other states could see the results. Gay marriage didn't destabilize families. Marijuana use didn't destroy lives, and it did seem to help people with certain illnesses feel better.

President Joe Biden, unfortunately, remains well behind the curve in marijuana legalization and does not seem terribly interested in actually doing much about it remaining a Schedule I controlled substance under federal law. But Americans continue to see, every day, that marijuana is no more of a moral threat than same-sex marriage. Rauch wrote in 2018:

Over time, it became evident that marijuana and marriage, like most political issues today, were primarily about morals and values, and only secondarily about policy trade-offs. For marriage equality, the real hang-up was the majority's belief that same-sex relations, in or out of marriage, are morally wrong, something most Americans told Gallup they believed until 2010. Attitudes toward same-sex marriage closely tracked with attitudes toward same-sex morality. People regarded support for legalization as a form of personal approval.

Much the same is true for marijuana. In 2006, most Americans told Pew Research that using marijuana was morally wrong. That figure had declined to only a third in 2013, a crucial breakthrough, given that most Americans do not distinguish clearly between public policy and personal morality. "As long as they saw marijuana as a threat to the safety of their children, we couldn't win," Stroup says. "As long as it was considered sinful or bad conduct or immoral, they were not about to" support legalization.

In other words, it was not enough to show that getting married or high is my right; activists needed to show that it is right—or at least not wrong.

Both advocates of same-sex marriage and marijuana legalization have succeeded wonderfully here, and slowly but surely, Americans are becoming more able to define their own relationships and consume what they want without the government attempting to punish them for it.

NEXT: Biden Won't Close the 'Tax Gap,' but He Will Snoop on Your Bank Records

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  1. As a friend says, you’ve never heard of anybody smoking a joint and beating up his old lady, unlike alcohol.

    1. You should tell that to my mother who spent 8 years getting the shit beat out of her 4-5 times a week by a sporadically-employed pothead until she finally decided to take her kid and go live in a shelter rather than continue that cycle.

      1. My deepest sympathies to you and your Mother, but there was something fucked up about that guy that had nothing to do with pot.

        1. Yeah, no shit. It’s almost like your drug of choice doesn’t really have shit to do with your interpersonal relational style. That was my point.

          1. My point is that alcohol is widely known to turn some otherwise-normal people into mean drunks. I have never heard of pot turning nice people mean.

            1. My point is that alcohol is widely known to turn some otherwise-normal people into mean drunks.

              It’s also known to make mean people tired/sleepy, aggressive people more pliable, and encourage stupid people to do stupid things (just like pot). The violent/destructive arguments are pretty much the cine que non why cocaine and heroin are scheduled as such.

              Both/all sides of “the drugs made me do it” argument are why we can’t have nice things.

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            2. Alcohol lowers your inhibitions. Mean drunks are mean people who are able to keep it to a simmer when sober.

              I hate mean drunks. What a waste of a drunk. I’m apparently a gregarious and jolly person deep down, thankfully, but drinking to be less shy can be the start of a vicious cycle.

            3. Please. Cut out the nonsense. There are plenty of people who smoke pot and who act on their baser instincts while under the influence. You come across as one of those campus hippies in the 80/90s who would rant on about the benefits of hemp.

      2. The guy beat your mother because wife beaters are gay in the first place. How so you ask? As a man, the most precious thing in life is his woman. Only pure hate for the opposite sex brings out that behavior. In reality he was unable to live out his gay life as he wanted and felt force into a hetero life which he hated. Wife beaters feel free to chime in. Maybe you can explain how beating what you should protect the most is OK?

    2. As a friend says, you’ve never heard of anybody smoking a joint and beating up his old lady, unlike alcohol.

      That’s because Jacob Blake was a saint you racist piece of shit!

    3. Marijuana-induced psychosis does happen, and some people can become violent on THC, but it’s exceedingly rare. The number of rowdy, aggressive alcoholics is disproportionately much higher than the number of rowdy, aggressive potheads.

  2. Not nearly good enough.

    Depressingly, there are still some hateful anti-LGBTQIA+ bigots in this country who don’t accept the scientific fact that bearded transwomen are, in fact, women.

    Worse, TRANSGENDER ATHLETIC PANIC is shockingly widespread even among women who should know better. Can you believe there are prominent female athletes who spew complete nonsense like “The entire reason we segregate sports by gender is because assigned-male-at-birth bodies have a huge advantage over assigned-female-at-birth bodies”?! It’s just ludicrous.

    #ILoveScience

    1. Is this a joke or are you serious.

      1. OBL is a hit-or-miss parody account. It’s unclear whether the hit-or-miss nature is the result of his hit-or-miss humor or the subject of his satire’s whimsically retarded behavior.

    2. Biology says gender is in the genes. XY for male, and XX for female. A tranny is experiencing gender dysphoria in which he lies about his gender for attention.

      1. Sex in humans is determined by the presence or absence of a Y chromosome. Gender is a social construct with strong biological underpinnings. Progressives and conservatives both tend to conflate the two categories. Gender dysphoria is a body image disorder. Trans individuals aren’t “lying.” There’s no intent to deceive. But hormone therapy and reassignment surgery are used to get their bodies in line with their disordered self-image rather than to correct that self-image to bring it in line with their bodies, and it’s passed off as a social justice issue to lend credence to the false notion that there’s some interior gender “essence” independent of biology that must be allowed to express itself, this quasi-Gnostic idea that a person can be trapped in the wrong body.

        1. But hormone therapy and reassignment surgery are used to get their bodies in line with their disordered self-image rather than to correct that self-image to bring it in line with their bodies…

          Homosexuality was labeled as a “disorder” at one time in psychological literature (like the DSM), but once they actually started studying it with rigorous scientific methodology, they didn’t find any evidence that homosexuality and bisexuality weren’t normal and healthy variations of human sexual orientation. They removed it from the DSM for it is 1973 edition. (DSM-III)

          But, naturally, there are still Christian conservatives that buy into “gay conversion therapy” to “pray the gay away”.

          The links between biology and our conscious and unconscious behavior are far more complex than a single chromosome can explain. I am not willing to label gender dysphoria as a “disorder” that could be fixed by bringing their self-image “in line with their bodies”, as you put it. It is entirely possible that it is as normal a part of the variations of human behavior and psychology as sexual orientation is. It is worth further scientific investigation to determine what interventions would be the most beneficial to people with those feelings, but I try not to have any preconceptions about what those interventions should or shouldn’t be.

  3. It’s a win for liberty because it’s a result not of government mandates but of people genuinely and honestly changing their minds

    So the supreme court overturning the duly passed laws and constitutional amendments in the 38 states that hadn’t legalized or recognized gay marriage wasn’t a government mandate?

    Can I ask you something? What the fuck would a government mandate look like? Apparently requiring a person to take a non-FDA approved drug as a condition of attending school or being licensed as an attorney doesn’t count. The supreme court ordering states to issue gay marriage licenses doesn’t count. Forcing people to carry medical insurance with a thousand government-mandated coverage conditions doesn’t count. What does a government mandate look like in the United States of Koch-sucking?

    1. Wait a minute. The U.S. Supreme Court upholding individual rights is an onerous, tyrannical government mandate, but requiring FDA approval for a life-saving vaccine is not???

      The mandatory health insurance, I grant you that is a tyrannical mandate, but what good is private voluntary health insurance if you’re not free to cover your partner or to take a life-saving vaccine also?

      1. The U.S. Supreme Court upholding individual rights is an onerous, tyrannical government mandate, but requiring FDA approval for a life-saving vaccine is not???

        There is no individual right to a government certificate for welfare benefits, which is what “marriage” is in a legal context. If there were then laws prohibiting polygamy and incestuous marriages would have been overturned at the same time. There is no role for the government in marriage other than *maybe* registering the documentation for purposes of probate. Also the person you’re fucking is not entitled to coverage under your medical insurance. As if you somehow became a single risk-factor for actuary purposes when you dunked your dick. Yeah, sorry you totalitarian piece of shit, the government forcing your insurer to give benefits to the person you chose to fuck and also mandating that you be given special benefits because of the person you chose to fuck is not an exemplar of defending individual rights. You’re just an entitled piece of shit.

        Also I’m fine with doing away with FDA approval for drugs entirely. Your experimental vaccine against a 1 in 10,000 risk of death doesn’t get special dispensation though. The state you worship made the rules, you can fucking goddamn well live by them.

        1. Where do you get the idea that equal rights and justice before the law for consenting adults is totalitarian? And where does “welfare” come in to this???

          And where did you get that I support mandating what insurers cover in their policies? If they cover a partner voluntarily, where is the harm here? And if they don’t cover a partner, no big deal. Married couples of any orientation can just find an insurer that does cover them.

          I think maybe you took some blows to the head with your poor Mother. You need to have that seen about. Please get help.

          1. Alfred is correct that a marriage license is actually a contract between the two marrying parties and the state for enforcement of certain dictates. It’s a ticket to membership in an exclusive club of government entitlements not equally available to all.

            1. Well, I’m all for making any bennies of married couples strictly contractually spelled out and not grants by the State. We’re not enemies here.

        2. you make all kinds of definitive statements which contradict reality. maybe I shouldn’t be surprised. Actual governmental and individual rights responsibilities do not exist outside of what elected representatives vote on and whether those in power choose to follow them. Any “god given” or “natural” right is nothing but a demand and it is the society that determines what those rights and responsibilities will be. It always amazes me that otherwise thoughtful people will claim certain rights are inalienable or divine. It doesn’t matter what the framers of the Constitution said. what matters is whether the government chooses to grant those. you should clarify your “is” statements to “ought to be” statements. They’re all just your opinion.

  4. As many at Reason have previously noted, state experimentation through the mechanism of federalism has played a major role in shifting public opinion toward accepting both same-sex marriage and recreational marijuana use.

    The supreme court forcing the 38 states that had not legalized gay marriage to legalize gay marriage is… kinda like federalism. If by federalism you mean, the complete and total opposite of federalism.

    1. I believe what they mean is that the 12 states that legalized gay marriage before it was legalized nation-wide demonstrated that legalizing it had no bad consequences. This led to a federal legalization years later.

  5. America Loves Gay Marriage (and Weed)

    And if it’s at the same ceremony, Jackpot!

    1. Not everyone needs to ply their partner with drugs to get laid like you.

      1. And you know all this how? You a certainly proof that people can act stupid with or without drugs.

  6. Social conservatives are getting stomped by reasoning, modern, educated Americans — the liberal-libertarian mainstream — in the culture war. Couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch of superstitious, authoritarian, prudish, right-wing bigots.

    1. Right on cue the quirky Artie comes by to spew bigotry and hatred.

      1. one-trick ponies deserve a voice too lol

        1. Artie needs more weed.

          1. I share. might be a hoot to hang w/the rev.

    2. You forgot “inbred, slack-jawed, knuckle-dragging, and gobbling up street pills.” And you didn’t flourish your cape and say: “Carry on, Clingers!”

      Man, you are losing your touch, Artie!

  7. >>support for same-sex marriage among Republicans

    helps them avoid the sword of Damocles the Canceler

  8. America Loves Gay Marriage (and Weed)
    A new poll shows even a majority of Republicans now support same-sex marriage.

    Republicans (and everyone else) have much bigger fish to fry, right now.

    1. ^^^^ This.^^^

      And the fact that voters in different states voted against it, but our robed masters at Supreme Court over road the will of the People. So…

      1. As with the Supreme Court case of Loving vs. Virginia in 1968. Was “the will of the People” right then?

    2. I firmly believe a huge segment of the population is most firmly behind the right to genuinely not give a crap.

      Seriously, most of us don’t “love” gay marriage. Just don’t care. The kitten has long been out of the clutch on that one, not worth bothering with anymore. Pot? Don’t care. Not my thing, so I don’t smoke, if you like it go ahead. Don’t get stoned and drive like an idiot, don’t blow it in my face, and I can’t see how it is my concern.

      What really irks most people is being demonized for whatever the issue du jour is. But the extremes have an outsized voice and it is amplified by the 50 centers and propaganda farms to sow division. I am afraid it’s working, too.

    3. Commies at unreason are ignorant dipshits so they mistake indifference for acceptance.

      1. Exactly LC1789.
        “Resigned to” is more accurate than “support”.

  9. Too bad government issued marriage licenses are a violation of liberty.

    1. The wokertarians seem to have forgotten about the part where government shouldn’t be in the business of defining the institution of marriage. If “a man and a woman” is arbitrary, then “two people” is even more arbitrary, but the socially progressive wing of the libertarian movement doesn’t seem all that interested in legalizing polygamy.

      1. If “a man and a woman” is arbitrary, then “two people” is even more arbitrary…

        No, it isn’t. Polygamy is different in all kinds of details about how the legal relationships would work. Laws regarding marriage give benefits, privileges, powers, and responsibilities assuming two people. Adding in a third person into the arrangement, or more, would require adding new law. For instance,

        Laws that give a spouse the ability to make medical decisions in the event that the other spouse is unable to do so assume a single person. What if there are two spouses for that third person incapacitated, but they disagree on what to do?

        If one spouse in a 3+ marriage wants a divorce, how do shared assets get divided? Child custody? Do they all have to agree to the divorce settlement? Will a plural marriage like that even been a marriage between all spouses, or is it just that there are separate two-person contracts?

        Unlike for polygamy, no modifications at all needed to be made to existing marriage law to extend it to same sex couples. At least not since marriage law stopped giving the husband more control over property and the like. If your idea of “traditional marriage” includes the man having the control over shared property, then same sex marriage is legally different, sure.

        For those few people that actually might want polygamy to be legal, they would be asking for new law to be written. Same sex couples just wanted existing law to apply to them. That is a fundamentally different argument.

  10. One day the Republicans may even run a gay-friendly Presidential candidate!

    I mean, not Trump, he doesn’t count because he’s icky and if you don’t hate him you’re not *really* gay.

    On a more serious note, the movement to embody in law the “mawwiage” speech from The Princess Bride has been going on before the SSM movement picked up steam. It’s just about happy erotic feelings between two (or more?) people (and only so long as the happy feelings continue ), so why can’t gays get into that too?

    1. And he disrespectfully waved a rainbow flag at one of his rallies!

      1. The rainbow of diversity is so crowded with Qs and Is, there’s no room for an R.

        1. Fire at the gay pride parade? LGBTQBBQ!

  11. Naturally, there was never an artificial separation on the part of most SSM marriage advocates between government-issued marriage licenses and crushing associational and religious freedom in the name of wuv.

    The Reason-type libertarians may issue the occasional tut-tut against how coerced association and violating religious freedom is a regrettable byproduct of “marriage equality.” To be sure.

    1. Don’t see where you get that. The right of a couple to marry and the right of Masterpiece Cake Shop to refuse to bake a cake are both rights to freedom of association and as far as I’m concerned, are all of a single piece (so to speak.)

      1. I was referring to “most SSM marriage advocates” – do you really think they make those distinctions?

        Libertarians may have fellow-travelled with this movement, but in the end it’s about compulsory social acceptance, not liberty.

        1. For that matter, the *Libertarian Party candidate* made no distinction, and his support for SSM was combined with his support for compulsory cakes.

          1. My Aunt, who was more Bill Maher ‘liberal’ than libertarian, said that religious bodies could make their own rules on whose marriage they solumnize, but the Clerk of Court or Justice O’ the Peace should stay the Hell out of it.

            My position exactly. and it’s probably more popular than people think, it’s just people on the most SJW and Westboro Baptist sides equally shout it down.

  12. >>When Gallup first asked, support was at just 27 percent.

    the Seinfeld episode hadn’t taken full effect yet.

    *and don’t get me wrong I couldn’t care less who marries whom I think the entire concept of marriage is ludicrously tragic.

  13. Over time, it became evident that marijuana and marriage, like most political issues today, were primarily about morals and values, and only secondarily about policy trade-offs. For marriage equality, the real hang-up was the majority’s belief that same-sex relations, in or out of marriage, are morally wrong, something most Americans told Gallup they believed until 2010. Attitudes toward same-sex marriage closely tracked with attitudes toward same-sex morality. People regarded support for legalization as a form of personal approval.

    Yup this is the sort of thing that I have been saying for a while now, it is just more widespread than I thought. A very large number of people, evidently, believe that rights are contingent on one’s moral worth. That in order to be afforded the full panoply of rights that one is endowed with by one’s Creator, that one must first show that one has the proper moral standing to be worthy of those rights. “Icky people” don’t get rights because they’re icky. It’s also why support for the death penalty remains high, and arguments against it based on the rights of the accused don’t seem to work. Because the pro-death-penalty contingent can always say “look at what a scumbag this guy is. How can you say that he deserves to live at all?”

    We have our work cut out for is to persuade people that rights are inherent, they are independent of one’s moral worth. The sinner and the saint both have exactly the same natural rights that were endowed to them by the Creator. We have a lot of work to do.

    1. We have our work cut out for is to persuade people that rights are inherent

      You just lit the Tony signal.

      1. Well the article is about gays, so I think the signal was already lit.

    2. Let me start by saying that I am anti-death penalty, but not for the reasons that you have stated.

      A continuation of your logic would say that imprisonment is a violation of the convicted person’s natural rights to freedom of association and movement. Of course we as a society have accepted that if and only if you are convicted of violating someone else’s rights, you lose some of your rights as well. The death penalty is just an extension of those punitive measures to the extreme.

      The keys to why I am against the death penalty have little to do with losing rights if convicted. They are centered more around the fact that the punishment is irreversible and that government can never be 100% right in prosecuting cases and juries will never be 100% correct.

    3. You have the nub of the jist correct here, even though a personified “Creator” does not exist.

    4. A very large number of people, evidently, believe that rights are contingent on one’s moral worth.

      Maybe, but when the time comes to produce the offspring that are necessary to pay the bill, the abstinent saint and the unwilling homosexual are equally worthless, regardless of anyones beliefs or morals. Nowhere in your philosophy is there even a whiff of explanation or justification that just because two people have equal rights, they are equally valuable. The argument you’re half making is equality *before the law*.

      1. Look at the libertarian barely hesitating before endorsing eugenics-based social engineering.

        1. People who don’t reproduce don’t survive as a species. Show me where I endorsed it one way or the other.

      2. Is a person’s worth solely determined by whether they produce offspring?

        Is this true, especially when those offspring are sent off to 12 years of brainwashing in Gummint Skoolz to worship the State, then potentially to be conscripted to fight and die in no-win wars to “change hearts and minds” and “nation-build” and serve as a global “Meals On Wheels,” the work 60+ years as a tax-cow for the Welfare/Warfare State?

        I say the faster that the Welfare/Warfare State goes belly-up, the faster we can transition to a better, freer society with libertarian free-market alternatives. If that means not procreating children for the meat-grinder, that is good. If it means parents not sending kids to Gummint Skoolz and encouraging them to be self-supporting and to “shrug” and pay as little tax as legally permissable when they go to work, that’s good too.

        Either way of starving the Welfare/Warfare State is a worthy pursuit and the people who practice either of these pursuits are equally valuable.

        1. Is a person’s worth solely determined by whether they produce offspring?

          Not what I said. But when you build a retirement system, a healthcare system, a food stamp system, an educational system that requires ever greater amounts of bodies and labor then yes, they do. Again, by your own tenets, two bodies are better than one. Three bodies are better than two.

          If that means not procreating children for the meat-grinder, that is good.

          Meat grinders within meat grinders. The government isn’t the only one. Not producing offspring doesn’t guarantee no meat grinders, just no meat.

    5. You’re gonna have to explain what you mean by inherent. You seem to mean that they’re created by all-powerful deities who spend their time creating universes and concerning themselves with the interpersonal behavior of halfway intelligent apes.

      Legal rights are the only kind of rights I like because they are written on paper and enforced by men with guns. You’re welcome to invoke them with prayer alone, I suppose, but good luck holding that up in court.

      1. I mean “Creator” in the same sense that the DoI used it – it could be an almighty God, but it doesn’t have to be. Whatever it is that grants us all that spark of life. That’s our Creator.

        And inherent rights are the rights that we have just by existing. It is the license to exercise our capacities and our talents free from arbitrary restriction.

  14. I suppose this is good news, but the basic framing of the issue (and this article) are still fundamentally evil.

    First, asking people if they approve of what others do in their individual lives sets the premise of societal authority, which includes everything from Puritans to nannies and Karens. And its a short trip from societal authority to government authority.

    Second, parsing the people by party continues to reinforce the idea that we all are, and should be, divided into ideological tribes. Combine this with my first point and we have the shit show now substituting for civil society, and will by definition detract from liberty, no matter how people might feel about a specific issue.

    1. Well said. The belief that government or socially-granted liberty is in any way a substitute for or representative of actual liberty is a farce libertarians shoud oppose.

      1. What is actual liberty? Can you be more precise in your definitions so the skeptics among us can at least get a handle on what the Christ you’re actually talking about?

        A right is an entitlement to be free to act without constraint or imposition. You have a right to own property, which means other people aren’t free to trespass, which means yet a third party must be employed to remove trespassers under sanction of law.

        If you claim a right to property without law telling you so, your right and the trespasser’s right are in conflict, and since there’s no government to arbitrate, isn’t it just a matter of who has the better aim?

        Literally all of modern political thought came into being to deal with the sorts of problems in that scenario.

        But perhaps I’m missing crucial details in this “actual right” business, so please elucidate.

  15. Are these the same pollsters who did the polling for the last 2 elections?

  16. Remember when homophobia and the fact that gays couldn’t get married was causing homosexuals to suffer mental anguish and kill themselves at disparate rates? Well, I pulled the suicide statistics among gay and bisexual men and was really shocked at how high they were. Though HIV mortality rates had been declining for years, suicide rates remained stable or even increased. So we think that the mortality lines have crossed for gay and bisexual men, with suicide likely having surpassed HIV as a leading cause of death.

    So, uh, yay?

    At least the ubiquitous obnoxiousness of personal social agendas as policy hasn’t affected the birth rate…

    1. I wonder if they surveyed their parents to see which ones were horrible bigots. Gay people still get kicked out of their homes, and most of us still have to grow up lying about basic aspects of our identity until we’re old enough to gather the strength to come out.

      But I’m sure you’ve done your part to make society more welcoming.

      1. I wonder if they surveyed their parents to see which ones were horrible bigots.

        Irrelevant. Unless you’re saying the Gallup poll showing that more people than ever support homosexuals is, one way or the other, bullshit. Either the approval rating is bullshit or homosexuality is associated with some sort of personal existential crisis of (lack of) self-worth. Whether you prefer fake numbers and ignoring problems that cause people to kill themselves or acknowledging fake numbers and admitting that the truth hurts, it doesn’t matter to me.

        But I’m sure you’ve done your part to make society more welcoming.

        Pretending it matters doesn’t make it matter. The evidence *that you want* is strong and mounting that homosexuals and homosexuality itself has caused far more homosexuals to kill themselves than I ever have. In light of the above, if I birth and parent a kid who turns out to be a homosexual while you simply pretend that homosexuality is an unbridled good, does that make you more valuable than either myself or my offspring (let alone both)? At least fools who wish in one hand and shit in the other limit the spreading of their waste to their own two hands.

      2. If public acceptance has risen dramatically, then suicides should fall in proportion, all else being equal, that is, if the social stigma theory is correct. Unfortunately, studies on gay mental health and comorbidity rates—any research which could potentially lead someone to conclude that homosexuality is abnormal or unhealthy—tend to be discouraged.

  17. In principle government should have nothing to do with marriage or your choice of recreational drugs.

    Yet they do.

    1. Marriage as we know it is a template contract for how rights and property are allocated by cohabitating couples. Nobody is under any obligation to accept the terms of that particular template or enter any contract at all., so I don’t know what the problem is, unless your politics are about going around whining about what kinds of contracts people choose to freely sign. And that sounds like a bit of a busybody attitude for a libertarian.

      1. see my comments below..I disagree. Marriage stabilized small communities..the community could not take care of kids out of wedlock say 10K years ago. And the emotional toll on sexual relationships (aka free love) driving envy, anger, and violence also helped promote marriage. Yes now it is about property but not so much back then…pretty much all old institutions have a very good reason to exist..and often its taking stress off the community

        1. pretty much all old institutions have a very good reason to exist

          Frequently several. Some irrelevant, some forgotten. Discarding them because they are old is, outcome-wise, indistinguishable from creating bad institutions for bad reasons.

        2. It has only been in the last century or so that even Western society has been increasing the recognition of the equal rights of women, especially within marriage. Marriage isn’t just about the stability of communities, caring for children, and so on. It has also been about possession of women as a resource to varying degrees in virtually all cultures throughout human history. There are still cultures on Earth (including the fundamentalist LDS cults) that expect powerful men to possess multiple wives, with the number of wives being part of how their success and power and wealth is measured.

          Anyone thinking in terms of “traditional marriage” had better recognize that societal views of what marriage is and what it is for have been changing dramatically within living memory even without bringing same sex couples into it.

  18. The reason there is so much mind-numbing incoherence in y’alls discussion of rights surrounding this issue is because what you’re actually doing is clinging to cultural assumptions and trying to justify them within the rules of the libertarian game.

    I don’t know how many times I have to explain this: if your political values are in deed about maximum individual liberty, you should do yourself a favor and not be a small-minded simpleton in thrall to an ancient sex-policing desert religion.

    1. How do you feel about multi partner marriage? Look the issue is we do have very long standing institutions like marriage. Why..that is a good question to think about. Why was same sex frowned upon..again most likely had to do with thousands of years ago with small communities and high child mortality. Just like the idea of marriage itself..it helped the “tribe” survive. Now with low child mortality there really isn’t any need to stop same sex marriages which also can adopt kids who are not wanted. The problem I think becomes how you judge say polygamy. Historically it destablizes a community so I doubt it gets legalized. The religious/morality we wrap our institutions with often lasts longer than the rational in the first place ..

  19. I don’t care. I do not care what arrangement you do or do not agree to. The government should have nothing to do with it. So far as I care you do not need the blessings of the state.

    Marriage is nothing more than a civil arrangement. That is your argument.

    Well get married for 30 + years and then talk with me. Or don’t. It is none of my business.

    It has nothing to do with whatever God you do or do not have. It is not about that and I have been to some very interesting marriages.

  20. “A new poll shows even a majority of Republicans now support same-sex marriage.”
    Yet progressives will keep repeating that all conservatives hate gay people.

    1. Also, despite the fact that gay couples experience domestic abuse at the same levels (and, according to multiple sources, lesbian couples suffer even more), men and the conservative, patriarchical, Christian institutions, like marriage, are responsible for the majority of society’s ills.

      If it were truly an ambivalent choice, 50% approval would be the norm and nobody would have a problem with it. Take it or leave it either way. Instead, there are growing mountains of dead bodies (from homophobes, domestic abuse, suicide, other… doesn’t really matter) that demonstrate that homosexuality isn’t in any way superior and people are cheering 77% approval ratings like it’s meaningful or a good thing.

  21. Now lets get to the real action…getting agreement to end the Fed, close down any federal agency created after 1960, bring all troops home (but keep some strategic naval and air bases overseas), revisit and rewrite the CRA of 1964 to end all govt discrimination once and for all and allow freedom of commerce and freedom from government forcing hiring and promotional quotas. Stop the war on drugs. Sorry Scott but these things have much much more impact on our liberty than SS Marriage and legalized weed. I have no issue with either of these but honestly the welfare/warfare state is the enemy here and needs to be shut down. Trans folks competing in their non biological sport is not a priority (for for that matter something any libertarian should desire on discriminatory grounds)….

  22. I’m so conservative I make Ronald Reagan look like a commie, but even I don’t have issues with gay marriage. My issue has always been with allowing government to be involved in the marriage business.

    Wanna get married? Go get married. Want the gov to recognize it for tax/inheritance/medical/insurance purposes? Sign a contract.

    1. I don’t have issues with gay marriage. My issue has always been with allowing government to be involved in the marriage business.

      I do have an issue with gay marriage. There’s plenty of evidence that it’s associated with internal deception and misperceptions of self-worth. Celebrations around such ill-conceived ideas are evil as much as virgin sacrifices or death cults. I agree that the government should be out of the marriage business and that people should be free to smoke, drive without a seatbelt, and marry their same-sex partner.

      Wanna get married? Go get married. Want the gov to recognize it for tax/inheritance/medical/insurance purposes? Demonstrate theft-free ROI.

    2. I also wonder how much of this rise is due to (a) political defeatism (there’s no turning back at this point), (b) shy conservatives who are afraid of pollsters perceiving them as bigots, (c) a shift to the transgender issue, which makes even a lot of moderate Democrats uncomfortable, and (d) a conservatarian view that same-sex marriage’s legality can be divorced from its social desirability along with a desire to see government removed from the equation. I don’t think growing cultural acceptance can fully account for these numbers.

    3. Want the gov to recognize it for tax/inheritance/medical/insurance purposes? Sign a contract.

      That’s what state marriage laws are, in essence. They are a default contract for people that want to get legally married. People can, and do, modify that contract with additional legal documents of their own. Pre-nups, advance directives for medical care if you don’t want a spouse to make those decisions on their own for you when you are incapacitated (which is a good idea anyway, so that they can be relieved of the burden of not being sure what you would want when they are already under a lot of stress), and if you want inheritance to include people other than your spouse, write a will.

      Perhaps there is another reason for government to recognize and have laws regarding marriage: then other people have to accept the validity of your contract. There is no basis at all for an employer to dispute whether you are married if you have a government issued marriage license when you want to add your spouse to your employer-sponsored health insurance plan. If it is a private contract only, maybe they could try and wriggle out of recognizing it, as they are not a party to that contract. I don’t know, I’d let actual lawyers say whether that would be something that could occur or not.

      That then becomes the real issue, doesn’t it? People that can’t accept same sex relationships as anything other than immoral don’t want to have to accept that there even can be a legal contract between a same sex married couple. The distinction between a private marriage contract and a government issued marriage license is a trivial one if they would really have the same effect.

  23. Serious question to all the libertarian potheads frequenting Reason:

    What’s a person to do about the smell of pot from neighbors? The guy living next door to us starts his day with a wake-n-bake and tokes up another half dozen times to get himself through the day. Our porch is now unusable and we even have to keep windows A/Cs off in 90 degree heat.

    I support his right to do whatever he wants with his body, but there is literally no place on the property that he can smoke marijuana without the smell impacting others.

    I don’t recall smelling a beer or a scotch & soda from my pleasant, well-behaved neighbors in years past…

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