The gay marriage discussion has taken an odd turn. Other than the most ardent homophobes, most people seem to agree with the idea of some kind of rights for gay couples, if only the right to be at someone’s bedside in the hospital; the discussion is around how broad these rights should be. But after the Supreme Court’s decision striking down the Georgia anti-sodomy law, even some people who support broad rights for gay couples went out of their way to make the case that whatever a gay couple’s relationship is, it is not marriage, because that is something between a man and a woman, and focused, as one of the Democratic presidential candidates said, on having babies and raising them.

That’s sort of weird though. We let people get married who we know can’t have babies, or who may have already decided never to have babies. And gay people can and do have babies too and those babies need a family unit. But I digress.

In any case, at this point, it almost seems to boil down to semantics. These people seem to be saying that you could have an institutionally defined relationship between gay couples which was even in all respects identical to marriage—but just don’t call it marriage. Then what to call it? You heard it here first: Bob’s neologism for gay marriage, which is gayriage. I think this catching on is just a matter of time!

When gayriage is implemented, though, let’s take the opportunity to make one major change from marriage—make it for five-year renewable terms. This is an old idea of mine which I was flattered to see in the book Against Love, although there the proposed term was one year—far too short in my opinion. Anyway, once we have experience with the how renewable terms work in gayriage, maybe we can then back-fit them into marriage!

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