Gender Diversity in Utah – Hah!
It is kind of hard not to fall on the floor laughing when you read Utah’s latest arguments against marriage equality. (See NY times article.) Utah is promoting gender diversity? Since when? Are there suddenly going to be more women in state government? How about in the LDS priesthood? No, that would impact on the patriarchy. They just want gender diversity in marriage and nowhere else where it might actually make a difference.
I think diversity is in general a good thing. At my church we try to include both men and women in positions of leadership. We also try to include people of differing sexual orientations and ages . It is always good to have input from singles and couples, parents and non-parents, people who are abled bodied and people living with a variety of disabilities, immigrants and the native born, the financially comfortable and the struggling. Bouncing ideas off of people with different life experiences usually leads to better, more thoughtful decisions on an institutional level. I wish Utah would begin doing that, but I am not holding my breath.
No, they just want to mandate “gender diversity” in the very personal institution of marriage and the family. They also seem to think that one’s gender defines everything about them, that men always parent one way and women a completely different way. Don’t they know any families where the woman works and the man stays home with the kids? Hmm. Maybe not. They should talk to some of those folks too.
Do they also really think all same gender couples have identical parenting styles? My wife and I both identify as female, but if you asked our now adult children if our parenting styles were exactly the same, they would laugh at you. (Click here to read our daughter’s toast at our recent wedding.)
There have been a number of reputable studies of children raised in same gender households (Click here for a report of a recent one). While it is not scientific, our three children are all outstanding young adults. We are very proud of them. They are well educated, employed, and trying to help make our world a better place. I am more than a little tired of a state that clearly does not really value children, despite its pretensions of being family-friendly, disparaging my family and my kids. (Read my post on Utah’s “Gold Standard”)
For the Utah Attorney General to maintain that Utah believes in gender diversity is just a lie if it isn’t a joke. Maybe if they did, we wouldn’t be having this discussions at all. Institutions that do have real gender diversity tend to be much more accepting of LGBT people. (see my post on the ordination of women and GLBT acceptance.)
Utah is a state dominated by a very patriarchal church. By gender diversity they can only mean that they want to maintain rigid sex roles where the men “bring home the bacon” and the women stay home barefoot and pregnant, obeying their husbands in all things. That is the ideal family to them I guess. They should then be just as concerned about the heterosexual marriages that try and function as equal partnerships. Maybe that will be their next step. Be afraid. Be very afraid if they win.
It would be funny if it weren’t so heartbreaking.