Editorial alert! Personal opinions following…
Quite randomly, on the way home, after reading yet another article about the preoccupation of the current administration with the sins of homosexuality, and yet another article about the Secretary of Education’s plan to dismantle support for victims of sexual assault, I wondered why does it seem that more latitude is given to rapists than to people who practice sexual creativity. Even consensual same sex relationships are subject to seemingly endless condemnation by the conservative right while we are expected to give the rapist the benefit of the doubt because the victim may have been asking for it. Or leniency because boys will be boys and think of his future and, after all, she’s not dead.
So, I wonder: why is consensual sex worse than rape?
Granted, thankfully, rape is a crime and homosexuality is no longer a crime. It’s delicate progress but same sex marriage is becoming more protected from persecution, or at least was until January this year.
Let’s examine it from a logical perspective.
On the one hand, you have someone who has been physically assaulted and will live out the rest of their days with some level of psychological trauma. Sexual assault is criminal, and rightly so. On the other hand, you have two consenting adults who find pleasure and companionship and neither of whom will need any more therapy than your typical hetero person who’s gone through the gauntlet of romance.
And yet, the conservative right would have you believe the worst of the committed couple and the best of a perpetrator of sexual violence, even in the case of undisputed physical evidence. How is this remotely acceptable?
As a married person, I find it insulting that the state of marriage is reduced to sexual intercourse. After all, if same sex people cannot enjoy a lifetime commitment and legal privileges of such, just because of the way they have sex, that means, conversely, that my marriage is valid on the basis of the way we have sex. This is unacceptable. Never mind the fact that married people participate in a wide variety of activities outside of the bedroom that are entirely unrelated to gender or physiology.
Marriage is an emotional, and legal, contract between two people who agree to be faithful, in the way they design, to each other for their entirety as humans on this planet. The challenge of sticking with one person for your entire life is what makes marriage special; not what you’re doing with your anatomy during that time.