The 'Dinner-Table Debate' Is On: Savage Versus Brown

BY Lucas Grindley

May 30 2012 12:02 PM ET

Dan Savage, Brian Brown

Dan Savage and the president of the National Organization for Marriage have agreed to a polite "dinner-table debate" — on a few conditions.

Brian Brown had challenged Savage to debate him "any time, any place" after Savage said during a public appearance that the biblical argument against marriage equality was just "bullshit." Savage accepted the challenge but then dictated the terms of the venue.

"Brown expected, no doubt, that I would pack a hall with hooting, hollering supporters of marriage equality who would boo and shout him down," wrote Savage on his blog, saying that's "probably what he was after" because it would let Brown "play the victim."

So Savage offered up a different idea.

"Instead I invited Brown and his wife to come to dinner at my house and meet my husband and son," he wrote. "No booing crowd, no grandstanding. Dinner. I would have to acknowledge Brown's humanity by extending my hospitality, he would have to acknowledge mine by accepting my hospitality."

Savage asked that after dinner, New York Times reporter Mark Oppenheimer be allowed to moderate a debate about marriage, equality, religion and the Bible. On Tuesday, Brown agreed to those terms, saying it will be "fun" and added a few of his own.

First, Brown's wife can't attend because she's too busy being a mom to seven children, with an eighth on the way. And Brown wants to bring his own camera crew because he doesn't appear to trust the Times' reporting. Plus, Savage apparently plans to have his own crew there.

But with all those rules in place, the "dinner-table debate" is on.

Tags: Religion

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