all 11 comments

[–]BiHorror 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Eh, I'm personally fine with both but you do have a point with:

Forty or fifty years ago, "marriage equality" would probably be taken to mean the legalization of interracial marriages. In another decade or two, it will probably be taken to mean the legalization of polygamous marriages

Although, I do think it depends on the context. If I'm reading this correctly, if we're on the discussion of LGB then I think it would be fine to say "marriage equality." But, if we were just talking about anything and brought up marriage equality, then it could be confusing since it could mean anything! Are we talking issues relating to same sex marriage? Polygamous marriage? So yeah. I think it depends. Especially if there's different groups going about marriage equality at the same time.

The other reason that I prefer "same-sex marriage" is that "marriage equality" is morally-laden. I generally don't care for morally-laden terminology, since it tends to unnecessarily hinder discussion between people who aren't like-minded.

Explain please? Maybe it's just me being dumb, but I never thought that "marriage equality" was considered morally loaded.

[–]mvmlego[S] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I never thought that "marriage equality" was considered morally loaded.

I know enough social conservatives who oppose(d) same-sex marriage to say that at least a large minority considers it to be morally loaded, and I think it is as well. Opponents of same-sex marriage, just like liberals, think that equality before the law is a moral imperative, but they have a different idea of what constitutes equal treatment. On an abstract level, opponents of same-sex marriage oppose it because they don't see it as equivalent to heterosexual marriage in some way or another. Consequently, to acknowledge that same-sex marriage is equal to heterosexual marriage is to give the game away.

Of course, that makes it a useful rhetorical strategy for liberals to frame the debate in terms of equality--and I suspect that's precisely why some liberals advocate for the term.

[–]BiHorror 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Ah... Thanks for explaining. I can understand a bit more on why it's considered loaded now.

[–]diapason 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Yeah, agreed. It's a really vague term—another interpretation of it could be that it's referring to equality within a marriage (i.e. husband does as much housework as his wife). I'm of the opinion that terms should generally be pretty immediately understood by anyone who has a basic knowledge of the debate around an issue… confusing terminology just doesn't help anyone. Another one that annoys me is "pro-life" versus "pro-choice"… "pro-life" could mean anything, are you against the death penalty? vegetarian or vegan? anti-war? opposed to euthanasia? "pro-choice" only makes sense within the context of the debate, but makes more sense than "pro-abortion" would I guess… but the right to an abortion is always described as "a woman's right to choose" which, while we all know what it means, for clarity should probably be "a woman's right to choose to have an abortion". I feel like debate is just always better when the issues aren't shrouded in language that's almost euphemistic for how vague it is

[–]PenseePansy 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

"pro-choice" only makes sense within the context of the debate, but makes more sense than "pro-abortion" would I guess… but the right to an abortion is always described as "a woman's right to choose" which, while we all know what it means, for clarity should probably be "a woman's right to choose to have an abortion".

The term "pro-choice" has always bugged me too, for the same reason (though-- again I'm with you on this-- not as much as "pro-life" does). Maybe it'd be better expressed as "pro-abortion rights"? Or is that too long, and/or too close to "pro-abortion" for comfort?

[–]diapason 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Yeah, I feel like that would be better. I'm not sure there's really a good and concise way of saying it though

[–]Silverdarling 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I don't think I've seen this "marriage equality" term, but it sounds quite non-specific and stupid. I wonder if it's been introduced because the term "same-sex" is considered hate speech to the more fragile elements of the gender-dysphoria lobby?

As you say, "marriage equality" sounds like it could refer to equality on the basis of some other potentially controversial characteristics: inter-racial marriages, inter-religious marriages, child marriages, "marriages" conducted by a cult leader and not recognised by the state etc? In the UK we also had the "civil partnership" precursor to same-sex marriage, where two men or two women could have a state-backed proxy wedding ceremony which conferred the same permanent legal aspects as marriage. Both "marriage" and "civil partnerships" are now available to same or opposite sex couples in the UK – so does "marriage equality" refer to this kind of conception?

When people deliberately make language more confusing to others, there's usually a dishonest agenda afoot.

[–]ChodeSandwich 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I remember people calling it 'marriage equality' back in... 2004-2006. I always thought it was just another dumb Americanism; the stereotype that we're terrified of the word "sex" is totally true.

[–]MarkJefferson 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I think I'd go with same-sex marriage myself. "Marriage Equality" could mean anything and nothing at the same time. It is really ill-defined, like the label, "Queer". And similiar to that label, I wouldn't be surprised if people also took advantage of the ambiguity to push their own unrelated agenda. I have never used and probably will never use the term "Marriage Equality" because I don't know what it means, when another more descriptive and less "inclusive" term exists. And if there's one thing I learned from this TQ++ mess, is that the devil's in the inclusions.

[–]PenseePansy 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I definitely prefer "same-sex" marriage, particularly over the competing term which I've heard far more often than "marriage equality" (my objections to which OP and others here have already covered): "gay marriage".

While the term "gay marriage" DOES come out ahead of "marriage equality" (way less vague and needlessly-prissy), the problem is... it excludes us. If a bisexual marries a gay man or lesbian, is that a "gay marriage"? How about when two bi men, or two bi women, marry each other? Then you have a "gay marriage" where neither spouse is actually gay! Sure, I guess it's not really a big deal... but what with the widespread tendency to erase us and let the LG eclipse the B, yet another example is still far from welcome.

Which doesn't happen with "same-sex marriage": it puts gay and (m/m or f/f) bi people on an equal footing. And that's the ONLY kind of "marriage equality" that I'm interested in. :)

[–]MarkJefferson 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Good point. That always bugged me too about the term "gay marriage". It obviously rolls off the tongue easier than "same-sex marriage", but the slight convenience is not worth the inappropriate-ness of the term. Also, I think many people use it because they see bisexuals as being half-gay and half-straight, so "gay marriage" works with that incomplete meaning in mind, as it is a marriage for that particular "half". To me, it doesn't work for bisexuals because "Gay" means exclusively same-sex attracted. You can't be half exclusively same-sex attracted and half exclusively opposite-sex attracted at the same time. Ah, the Bi erasure sometimes feels like a very stale and rough eraser that sands away the paper...