Katherine Kersten's gay marriage column mocked, ridiculed


When we read Katherine Kersten's incredibly wrongheaded and logic-defying column about gay marriage, we couldn't help but point out just how stupid it was.

Apparently, neither could her editors at the Star Tribune.

Today, Kersten's employer offered a counterargument, of a sort: a word-for-word rewrite of Kersten's column, but with "left-handed marriage" substituting for "gay marriage," penned by Kristofer Layon, a web and social media designer at the University of Minnesota.

Left-handed marriage would not -- as advocates claim -- merely extend the benefits of marriage to more people. Such a redefinition would compel us to repudiate time-honored ideas of social organization. Courts are beginning to upend our ideas about parenthood -- even including ambidexterous arrangements, with unpredictable results.

The Strib's letters column today also includes an excellent letter from a U of M anthropologist debunking Katherine's claim that marriage has always been between one man and one woman.

American Indian people in a number of tribes recognize "third spirit" individuals, who regularly contracted marriage with both men and women. South Asian society recognizes the "hijra," who are as likely to marry persons with their same genetic endowment as those with opposite endowment. Hundreds of other examples abound.

The American Anthropological Association issued a statement some years ago denouncing the incorrect notion that marriage is exclusively male-female among human societies. It is a scientific fact that such marriage arrangements have been institutionalized for millennia without affecting the institution of heterosexual marriage.