Straight People Cheating? It's Our Fault

In seeking equal marriage rights, we're undermining monogamy, claims a conservative columnist.

BY Trudy Ring

July 17 2014 5:49 PM ET

If you listen to the right wing, you’ll hear that just about every social ill is caused by LGBT people — and in one of the latest instances, a conservative commentator is saying “gay-marriage-minded folks” are partly responsible for infidelity in heterosexual relationships.

“Unrelenting denigration of marriage as an institution has been an obsession of ‘progressive’ folks for some time,” writes Amy Otto in a column published by The Federalist and quoted admiringly by the National Organization for Marriage on its blog. “They tend to use whatever blunt instrument is handy to push the ideal of marriage out of the public square. Whether it’s in the name of feminism, gay marriage, or naïve hipsterism, a full-frontal assault on the institution, not just by gay-marriage-minded folks, but by those who truly don’t believe the standards of marriage like monogamy are possible, has only intensified.”

Otto also advises readers not to buy into the argument that same-sex marriage will (or should) make straight couples reevaluate the presumption of monogamy in their own relationships. She cites some research indicating that fewer same-sex couples are monogamous than straight ones (actually, the research on this topic is inconclusive), and claims that monogamy and fidelity are of special importance to straight couples: “Men risk their resources raising a child that may not be theirs, while women risk losing male resources if the father has offspring with another woman.”

“The next time you see yet another piece declaring monogamy is ‘dead,’ remember the writer wants you to lower your expectations. But marriage and its necessary component, monogamy, are still the best game in town,” she concludes, without ever explaining how those who seek or support marriage equality are endangering monogamy.

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