Wedge this

Charles Krauthammer nails the gay marriage issue as far as I’m concerned, especially the comical attempts to claim that President Bush is driving a wedge:
“Wedge? Marriage has been around for, oh, 5,000 years. In every society, in every place, in every time it has been defined as an opposite-sex union. Then four robed eminences in Boston decree otherwise. With the stroke of a pen, they radically redefine the most ancient of all social institutions. And then those not quite prepared to accept this undebated, unlegislated, unvoted, unnegotiated revolution are the ones accused of creating a political wedge!”
But my favorite part of the column is Krauthammer’s reference to a Washington Post “analysis” piece (the quotation marks are King Charles’) claiming that the President is “rekindling the culture wars.” This is the piece by Dana Milbank, naturally enough. It richly deserves the quotation marks. By the way, has the Post, or any other mainstream media outlet, ever referred to an issue raised by the Democrats as a “wedge?”
Meanwhile, the Post’s editorial department takes the predictable position that President Bush is “debasing the constitution” by injecting the subject of marriage. At one level, Krauthammer dispatches this argument by showing how activist judges have left the president with little choice. At another level, it can be argued that the constitution should be about how we “constitute” ourselves as a society. Viewed in this light, provisions about central societal issues such as marriage are not necessarily out of place in the constitution. If it is surprising to see the issue there, this is probably because it is (or until recently would have been) surprising to see the definition of this core institution being changed.


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