The cover story in the New York Times Magazine, on April 27th, was a story titled, “Young Gay Rights”. It examined the reasons that gay men in their 20’s seem to be getting married at a prodigious rate. I loved the story, but I hated the photos. This is the letter that I wrote to them, which is published in this weeks magazine section.
I enjoyed Denizet-Lewis’, Young Gay Rites in the magazine of April 27th. The author crafted a lively and sympathetic read, chronicling the path to marriage and beyond; a path that is not so different for any couples of any sexual combination . But why the colorized, exaggerated photos, mimicking the most cliché and self conscious of coupled moments? Why pose Marc and Vasssili in tuxedos when they specifically stated that they will sidestep all the trappings associated with “traditional” weddings? Besides the uncomfortable nod to the fifties, (an era that was not especially welcoming to gays and lesbians), it insinuates that gay couples are somehow “play acting” at being married. As a civil Celebrant, who has had the great joy to preside over many gay unions in New Jersey, I’m insulted by the way these couples were depicted, at least visually. Any couple taking the momentous step of becoming legally married deserved to be spared mockery in the name of editorial shock value.”
They cut out the last sentence, which I felt was vital. As a civil celebrant, I feel very, very strongly about the civil rights that have been granted, (at least partially) in New Jersey. I’m proud that my state has taken that step, and hope that more will make the moves to guarantee the fundamental freedom to marry the person that one loves.