There is no such thing as "equality." Never has been, never will be. U.S. laws on marriage are part of an Anglo-American legal tradition that far pre-dates the Constitution. To complain that these ancient laws impose an unjust "inequality" is to urge the abandonment of that tradition -- which is exactly what you could expect from a lying liberal scumbag like Kmeic .
Please read "Feminism, 'Equality' and Gay Rights."
UPDATE: Pundette is right. Generally speaking, what liberals propose, conservatives oppose. Let's try to keep that in mind, people. We're never going to get any gold stars for "plays well with others," and we shouldn't pretend to try.
UPDATE II: Gabiel Malor at AOSHQ:
Kmiec . . . is echoing a growing refrain from the more libertarian-minded: get government out of the marriage business. . . .Well, first off, what Kmiec advocates is not a libertarian (or "libertarian-minded") approach. Rather, the entirety of the gay rights agenda is egalitarian, demanding that two very different behaviors be treated as if they were the same.
Look, you can't have it both ways. Either marriage is important enough for soceity--most clearly represented by its laws--to encourage. Or it's not. Taking away government recognition of marriage as it has been understood to operate for some time now can only ever be recognized as a retreat, a diminution in the status of marriage in the United States.
The gay Left has seized upon an analogy to the civil rights agenda (particularly Loving v. Virginia) and have convinced many that homosexuals -- as a class, or as a sort of behaviorally defined pseudo-ethnicity -- are victims of prejudicial discrimination, as indeed they are, if you adopt the worldview of philosophical egalitarianism.
How many times have I urged readers to take a look at Friedrich Hayek's book, The Mirage of Social Justice? The real problem with egalitarianism is not the means (which are often horrid enough) but rather the end, i.e., the impossible objective of "equality." It can never be obtained, but even if it were possible, is it really desirable?
There are many egalitarians who like to think of themselves as "deep," philosophical and sophisticated, and yet they have obviously never thought very deep about what "equality" would mean. Hayek did that, and did it in such a way that if you read what he wrote -- and if you're really a very thoughtful, pragmatic person -- you immediately become very skeptical when people rail against inequality, or propose some "reform" they say will remedy social injustice.
All egalitarian policies ever do is to (a) replace one set of problems with another, and (b) empower those who enforce the coercive regime necessary to the egalitarian project.
If, in the matter of (a) you suppose that the existing ills you would eradicate is greater than the new ills you would create, then you may still favor the egalitarian project. Yet it is the problem of (b) that looms large here, since the swelling of the regulatory bureaucracy, and the inherent moral problem of coercion, are evils entirely distinct from whatever new evils you have created by the egalitarian reform.
Most people never think that deep. Their argument for any policy -- whether gay marriage or the regulation of greenhouse gases or bailing out General Motors -- is always simplistic: Look, here's something bad, let's fix it.
Yet public policy doesn't work that way. There are always unintended consequences, many of which are unforeseen. Even long after the enactment of new reforms, it is often a matter of fierce debate what are the effects of these policies -- to this day, for example, we're still debating the legacy of the New Deal.
And I don't know about anyone else, but I'm getting sick and tired of being treated as if I were an ignoramus by people like Doug Kmiec who imagine themselves fit to lecture me, but who obviously haven't thought about the gay-rights agenda (or any other "progressive" agenda) in any critical way.