I fully support gay marriage being a constitutional right that’s enacted as soon as possible. Gay marriage is a noble cause and I applaud everyone who fought, protested and lobbied to give couples in same-sex relationships equal rights as heterosexual couples. My only fear is that after we enact same-sex marriage, the list of things left to protest is going to get pretty lame.
I’m not trying to take anything away from gay marriage. I just mean that compared to ending slavery, women’s suffrage and the civil rights movement, we’re running really low on good problems we need to fix. The previous generation fought for equal pay in the workplace, women’s rights and the end of the Jim Crow era. The generation before that fought across Europe to prevent the spread of Imperialism. The generation before them gave the vote to women. What are we going to have after gay marriage? Exactly.
As it stands right now, we’re left protesting wealth inequality and sex slaves overseas. The protests are already starting to blow. Occupy Wall Street turned into an adult version of a college drum circle. It had nothing on the sit-ins from the civil rights movement. Back in the Jim Crow south, nonviolent protesters were sprayed with water cannons. Now we have a trust-funder with dreadlocks who wants to legally smoke pot in the financial district. Protests are only going to go downhill from there.
If we keep clearing civil rights at a steady clip then future generations are going to have a sorry lot of available protests. There will be movements to let people marry the robot they made in their garage. Violent clashes to give flying cars the right of way. Marches in the street to ensure transgender people can have their own bathrooms. Are they good causes? Yes. Are they good protests? Lame, lame, lame.
It is a pressing issue because if we don’t have good stuff to protest, then how will we act all righteous and noble that we did something good with our lives? Will our Facebook profile pictures stay as equal signs forever? How will we tell ourselves that we’re noble and good if the protest we attended is for a trite cause?
Is fighting for one cause really better than another? Can you quantify how oppressed a group feels? Can you say that one issue is more important than others? Of course you can. On one hand, we are a nation that expresses progress and forward-thinking. On the other hand, we are also insanely competitive.
Gay marriage is a just cause. Couples who have been together for most of their lives are being denied the rights and benefits enjoyed by hetero-couples. That’s a horrible injustice. But is it as horrible as life before the civil rights movement, women’s suffrage and ending slavery? That’s for the next generation to decide during their lame-ass protests.
Gay couples should be allowed to marry each other. The reason stuff to protest is getting less awesome is because gay people are currently allowed to get married. They just aren’t allowed to marry someone of the same sex, nor can they marry the person they truly love. However I know a lot of married couples and it’s not all that different. That’s what makes marriage so special.
Everyone who had ever marched in a rally, donated to a cause or signed a petition should take pride in a job well done. It has been a steady stream of progress to ensure equal rights for everyone. And now that we’re clearing the hurdles of gay marriage, we have to focus our protests on the greatest injustice remaining: we are running out of really good injustices to protest.