Yes, the Ontario Court ruling really is a big deal. And yes, it really does represent the first actual, living, breathing gay marriage. Holland and Denmark have legal gay partnerships almost indistinguishable from marriage. But the Canadian precedent is the actual thing; marriage; the same thing as hetersoexuals take for granted. It isn’t separate but equal; it isn’t separate and unequal; it’s equality. Here’s the Court decision. No esoteric arguments about why this means bestiality and legal child abuse are just around the corner. Just a simple reading of what a civil state means when it grants all its citizens equal rights. Pathetically, the far right are now arguing that granting equal rights to a tiny minority will “oppress” them. That’s hooey. No one of any religious faith will ever have to acknowledge such civil marriages, just as Catholics don’t recognize civil divorce. But are Catholics “oppressed” because the state doesn’t follow their own religious interpretation of marriage laws? Of course not. What this means for America is that the Massachusetts Court decision – which is imminent – will now no longer be the first time marriage rights as such are granted equally. I particularly liked the following quote from a Canadian rabbi:

But not all religious leaders are opposed to the concept, the court was told. Ed Morgan, a lawyer representing the Canadian Coalition of Liberal Rabbis for Same-Sex Marriage, said his clients already perform same-sex marriage ceremonies and ‘would like to be able to do it with state sanction.’ Jewish religious life, even orthodox Jewish life, can “co-exist” in a society that allows same-sex marriage, said Morgan, whose clients intervened in the case. ‘We manage to live in a society that allows the sale of pork,’ he told the court.

Exactly. It really isn’t either-or. Gay marriage strengthens straight marriage; and marriage will help integrate gays into society and the family more effectively than anything else could.