I like to think that I’m a problem-solver. Give me a problem, and I can probably find a solution (Notice I didn’t say “the” and I didn’t use the modifier “good”).
When I look for a solution, if there are multiple parties involved, I first look at the solution that benefits everybody, and/or doesn’t harm anyone. When presented with a solution to a problem, I likewise look to see if it affects others, and whether that affect is necessary. Apparently, this is an uncommon trait.
There are an awful lot of folks who don’t or can’t do this. To them, everything is a zero-sum game, and you can’t gain anything unless someone’s losing something. I see them engaged in an epic quest to make sure that nobody is ever happy.
I call them Zeroers, and I give their epic quests epic titles.
The Zeroers of Marriage are working themselves up into a frothy lather lately. The Supreme Court of the United States will be issuing a ruling on same sex marriage sometime soon, possibly as early as Thursday, and Republicans are already vowing to fight it if they lose, despite the fact that SCOTUS is the highest court in the land; there’s nowhere else to take the fight to. At a certain point, you’ve lost.
And let’s be clear; there are no legitimate arguments against gay marriage. The only ones still in circulation are the religious argument (which isn’t good, but still gets used; it’s blatantly unconstitutional) and the zero-sum argument. Among certain folks, the invalid and dishonest “procreation” argument gets trotted out, but in day-to-day bigotry, it’s really just the Bible and zero-sum. But don’t worry; for once this isn’t just an American problem. There’s lots of places where Zeroers of Marriage trot themselves out.
Well, not really. According to them, they don’t want to get divorced. Unless the gays get marriage rights. Then, they’ll be forced to dissolve their legal union, even though they still want to stay together and raise their kids together, because they feel that unless the government only allows the people they want to marry, to marry, marriages shouldn’t count. The gesture is idiotic for many reasons, not least of which is that in Australia, you can’t get divorced if you intend to continue living together like a married couple. But that the Jensens wouldn’t understand the law before spouting off about it and their intentions regarding it is not a surprise by any stretch. His history lesson in the editorial is just as wrongheaded, and shows that he doesn’t know what he’s talking about in the slightest.
Let’s ignore the “Who cares?” aspect of this for the moment. I don’t care about them, or their marriage, but that’s not the point here. Let’s ignore how foolish they are, for understanding neither history nor the law. Let’s ignore their bigotry. Let’s ignore their despicable theocratic leanings. Those are all good topics (Well, making fun of them for being stupid and not having a grasp of history is more “mean” than “good”, but it would be fun). Their many, many, many failings aren’t what I want to talk about. What I want to talk about is their mindset. The zeroer mindset, if you will.
It’s certainly a mindset that others share. Orson Scott Card, that frothing, ridiculous, monstrous, hypocritical lunatic, likewise thinks that gays marrying would invalidate his own. He thinks “…homosexual “marriage” is an act of intolerance. It is an attempt to eliminate any special preference for marriage in society”, even though that’s not the case. He says “if my friends insist on calling what they do “marriage,” they are not turning their relationship into what my wife and I have created, because no court has the power to change what their relationship actually is. Instead they are attempting to strike a death blow against the well-earned protected status of our, and every other, real marriage.”
Of course, the Notorious OSC isn’t even a politician, but rest assured the Republican Party has their opinion on marriage: “We reaffirm our support for a Constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman”. Why? Because fuck you, that’s why.
None of these folks can articulate anything they’re actually losing. Let’s keep this pretty simple. Don’t want to get gay married? Don’t! Neither “Uncle Orson“, nor Rick Santorum, nor Ted Cruz, nor Jeb Bush, nor the Jensens from Australia, will actually see an affect in their own lives if gay marriage becomes legal tomorrow. They don’t actually lose anything. All that’ll happen is that other people will get something they don’t want those people to have; that’s the extent of what they lose. But because they see the situation as a zero sum game, as far as they’re concerned that’s everything. “Someone else getting something? That takes away from me, therefore I’m against it.”