The same-sex marriage debate rages on in my corner of California. It's a very right-wing community, so letters to the local newspaper generate a lot of responses from the "regulars" - locals who comment frequently on most articles & letters to the editor.
I always take the position that supports marriage equality, so I always end up being a defender of gay marriage, a hot topic here on the left coast. What I try to communicate to the other commenters, though, is that my defense of "gay marriage" has nothing to do with homo- or heterosexuality. It has everything to do with civil rights.
See, I have always been very much a live-and-let-live kind of guy. I have tried to live by the credo that people can do whatever they want, as long as they don't hurt someone else or infringe upon others' rights. This has led to conflicts in my life, as few people understood my belief that people should be allowed to do things that many feel they shouldn't, like commit suicide, etc. Where marriage is concerned, I believe consenting adults have the right to marry, period. That includes consentual plural marriage, same-sex marriage, even (gasp) between relatatives if they are adults when they enter into it and don't intend to reproduce (I draw the line at deliberate risk-taking with birth defects). I think it's nobody else's business, regardless of their individual moral values.
Also, as my wife will attest, before I was married I explained my resistance to legally-sanctioned marriage: I am firmly opposed to the idea that one of the most intimate parts of my life has to be licensed by the government, as if they own the rights to me like a slave. How can the government license who I fall in love with, the level of committment we have with each other, etc? Of course, I still married, but I did it for us, not to meet some government mandate. And with regards to California, where opponents to same-sex marriage frequently justify their position by procalaiming "The people have spoken!" (because they voted to ban it), I am also opposed to the idea that my marriage is subject to approval by popular vote.
Of course, local opponents to marriage equality also justify their position by ranting against homosexuality, citing "natural law" or what "nature intended", or that marriage is basically about reproduction, or that marriage needs to be protected and defended, or that it is the fundamental cornerstone institution of all human society and should be not defined as anything but a union betweem a man and a woman, and most often claiming that gays in civil unions in California already have all the same rights as straight married couples. I keep pointing out the obvious: They don't have the right to get married. If they did, we wouldn't be having this discussion over and over again.
So here I am, a heterosexual married man who shows up in the local newspaper forum to advocate for "gay marriage". Or as I think of it, advocating for civil rights while the "small-government" conservatives argue in favor of government micro-managememt of the intimate aspects of peoples' personal lives. They can shove their @#$% tea bags, as far as I am concerned.