A woman named Janna Darnelle has an essay on the website of the anti-gay Witherspoon Institute (the ones who funded that terrible Mark Regnerus study) arguing that we must prevent gay people from getting married because it will lead gay men to leave their wives.
I represent one of those real life stories that are kept in the shadows. I have personally felt the pain and devastation wrought by the propaganda that destroys natural families.
In the fall of 2007, my husband of almost ten years told me that he was gay and that he wanted a divorce. In an instant, the world that I had known and loved—the life we had built together—was shattered.
I tried to convince him to stay, to stick it out and fight to save our marriage. But my voice, my desires, my needs—and those of our two young children—no longer mattered to him. We had become disposable, because he had embraced one tiny word that had become his entire identity. Being gay trumped commitment, vows, responsibility, faith, fatherhood, marriage, friendships, and community. All of this was thrown away for the sake of his new identity.
Try as I might to save our marriage, there was no stopping my husband. Our divorce was not settled in mediation or with lawyers. No, it went all the way to trial. My husband wanted primary custody of our children. His entire case can be summed up in one sentence: “I am gay, and I deserve my rights.” It worked: the judge gave him practically everything he wanted. At one point, he even told my husband, “If you had asked for more, I would have given it to you.”
I truly believe that judge was legislating from the bench, disregarding the facts of our particular case and simply using us—using our children— to help influence future cases. In our society, LGBT citizens are seen as marginalized victims who must be protected at all costs, even if it means stripping rights from others. By ignoring the injustice committed against me and my children, the judge seemed to think that he was correcting a larger injustice.
Let me start by pointing out that the phrase “legislating from the bench” is a nonsense phrase that means nothing more than “I don’t agree with this judge.” It’s especially laughable in the context of a custody dispute (and frankly, her story doesn’t pass the smell test in the first place). More importantly, she has it exactly backwards. Her ex-husband didn’t suddenly decided he was going to be gay because he could get married to a man now (in fact, she admits that wasn’t possible at the time at all). He was gay all along and almost certainly felt the need to marry a woman because he was trying to hide his identity.
Allowing gay people to get married makes this outcome far less likely, not more likely. The more we end bigotry and discrimination toward gay people, the less they’ll be forced to hide their sexuality by getting into sham marriages.