Last week Joe highlighted Matt Franck’s Public Discourse article “Is Sex Just Like Race?” Matt was responding to the law professor who claims that the Catholic University of America is practicing segregation by returning to single-sex dormitories. But readers should also take note of what Matt says about the race-sex analogy when it comes to debates about the meaning of marriage.
I’ve heard more and more people comparing opposition to same-sex civil marriage to opposition to interracial marriage. This can become a particularly loaded charge if (as is often the case) they are talking to a supporter of marriage who is a member of a racial minority or in an interracial relationship.
It’s striking that these invocations of historic advances in civil rights are being used to bludgeon into silence many of today’s black and hispanic political actors—people like the members of Maryland’s black churches or the minority supporters of Prop 8. I hope that this ugly irony will give some of my friends who support same-sex civil marriage pause. As Matt’s piece goes on to explain, the race-sex analogy just doesn’t hold.