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11 November 2008

Keith Olbermann pleads with America to accept same-sex marriage I thought this was interesting and moving, even though I normally find him totally obnoxious. Enjoy.[More:]

Ooh, and here's some commentary.
I will share my Prop. 8 anecdote here. jonmc mentioned that asking why someone even cares if gay people get married is effective, and it works for me. That helps break down the issue. After getting someone I work with to admit he didn't really care, he went on to say that the only reason that gay people wanted to get married was because they wanted the tax break and the cheap insurance. So I asked him why his wife married him. If it was just for his insurance and the tax break. He said they planned on having children and a family. So I asked if he was just a money and sperm donor, and that was the only reason she married him. Or perhaps there might be a further emotional reason? He didn't answer me, but I think it may have caused him to think a little. I think in abstract terms it seems obvious to many people, but when you make it personal it makes the issue a little more real.
posted by eekacat 11 November | 19:18
I liked the Keith Olbermann piece, he seemed (oddly, for him) very sweet. I was a leetle shocked when he said he had no close friends (I'm paraphrasing) who are gay. Really? Weird.
posted by Claudia_SF 11 November | 22:15
Wow, I don't know much about Olberman but that was a decent and not-super-polemical way of getting the "what's it to you?" message across. More love all around!
posted by jessamyn 12 November | 00:31
Nice, and great personal story, eekacat. From what I've seen of Olberman in the past (not that much, where I am), I'm not a big fan of his dramarama style, but yeah, he certainly expressed the core point passionately... though I wonder how many "Yes" people are MSNBC viewers? I have no idea.

Funny anecdote I saw while looking at the My Mom is a FOB site posted at MeFi:

You tell ‘em, Momma!
By mmiaf | November 4, 2008

A story from a MMIAF reader:

I recently explained to my mom what “Yes on 8″ meant since there are a lot of signs in our neighborhood. We also just had two gay weddings in the family. On Thursday, at our neighborhood meeting, a woman running for a Senate seat in our district asked if we wanted a “Yes on 8″ sign for our lawn. I respectfully turned it down, but then my mom laughed and said loudly, “We cannot take! Our family has the gay!

posted by taz 12 November | 00:57
I was a leetle shocked when he said he had no close friends (I'm paraphrasing) who are gay.

I think it's just that Keith Olbermann has no close friends.

I wish we would just eradicate marriage altogether.
posted by Eideteker 12 November | 07:50
Why is that, Eid? Real marriage is in the head/heart and solemn vows and promises don't need the church or the state to be valid and binding between couples, but this list of benefits from ericb in the mefi prop 8 thread is important contractual/legal/social stuff:

Some of the benefits that accrue to married couples and not to unmarried ones.

"Filing joint income tax returns with the IRS and state taxing authorities.

Creating a 'family partnership' under federal tax laws, which allows you to divide business income among family members.

Inheriting a share of your spouse's estate.

Receiving an exemption from both estate taxes and gift taxes for all property you give or leave to your spouse.

Creating life estate trusts that are restricted to married couples, including QTIP trusts, QDOT trusts, and marital deduction trusts.

Obtaining priority if a conservator needs to be appointed for your spouse -- that is, someone to make financial and/or medical decisions on your spouse’s behalf.

Receiving Social Security, Medicare, and disability benefits for spouses.

Receiving veterans' and military benefits for spouses, such as those for education, medical care, or special loans.

Receiving public assistance benefits.

Obtaining insurance benefits through a spouse's employer.

Taking family leave to care for your spouse during an illness.

Receiving wages, workers' compensation, and retirement plan benefits for a deceased spouse.

Taking bereavement leave if your spouse or one of your spouse’s close relatives dies.

Visiting your spouse in a hospital intensive care unit or during restricted visiting hours in other parts of a medical facility.

Making medical decisions for your spouse if he or she becomes incapacitated and unable to express wishes for treatment.

Consenting to after-death examinations and procedures.

Making burial or other final arrangements.

Filing for stepparent or joint adoption.

Applying for joint foster care rights.

Receiving equitable division of property if you divorce.

Receiving spousal or child support, child custody, and visitation if you divorce.

Living in neighborhoods zoned for 'families only.'

Automatically renewing leases signed by your spouse.

Receiving family rates for health, homeowners', auto, and other types of insurance.

Receiving tuition discounts and permission to use school facilities.

Other consumer discounts and incentives offered only to married couples or families.

Suing a third person for wrongful death of your spouse and loss of consortium (loss of intimacy).

Suing a third person for offenses that interfere with the success of your marriage, such as alienation of affection and criminal conversation (these laws are available in only a few states).

Claiming the marital communications privilege, which means a court can’t force you to disclose the contents of confidential communications between you and your spouse during your marriage.

Receiving crime victims' recovery benefits if your spouse is the victim of a crime.

Obtaining immigration and residency benefits for noncitizen spouse.

Visiting rights in jails and other places where visitors are restricted to immediate family."

Now, however those rights are given doesn't matter to me. Whether it's a religious ceremony, a stamped paper from the Department of Very Important Papers, or kissing a purple frog's butt, I don't care - as long as the process is equally extended.

If you hate the institution of marriage, don't get married, obviously, but there are good reasons to have an official status. (V. and I are particularly fond of that second-to-last right, ourselves.)
posted by taz 12 November | 08:16
Olbermann does himself credit by dialing it down like this. Usually when he's on one of his triple espresso HOW CAN YOU CALL THIS AMERICAN SIR HAVE YOU NO DECENCY SIR AT LONG LAST SIR HAVE YOU NO DECENCY rants, I find myself tuning out even when I agree with him.

I'm sure the rants are a good part of his ratings, but me, I like Maddow's irony a lot more.
posted by middleclasstool 12 November | 09:28
Somewhere the Reverend Sun Yung-Moon is planning to marry all of America to Keith Olbermann.
posted by King of Prontopia 12 November | 13:37
I wish he'd channel Cronkite a little more than Murrow.
posted by stilicho 12 November | 16:55
Meatbomb's 20 Minute Spaghetti Sauce || Your really good xmas turkey stuffing recipes please!