CIVIL UNIONS….This column is a week old (I noticed it today via Andrew Tobias), but it’s worth linking to. Thomas Oliphant points out that of the 11 gay marriage initiatives on the ballot this month, only three of them were solely about gay marriage:

In state after state…these referendums went far beyond the question of who gets to be formally married. They also banned legal and other conventions incidental to marriage, which are central to the evolving institutions of civil unions and domestic partnerships.

….In pivotal Ohio, for example, the voters may not have realized it but they voted to strip people of the right to contractually arrange distribution of assets, child custody, pensions, and other employment benefits. They most definitely were not “protecting” marriage; they were attacking gay people. That is why the political and business establishment there, including Republicans, opposed the measure.

These initiatives weren’t “protecting” marriage, they were effectively banning civil unions too.

If I’d been paying more attention, I would have known that. But I figure that if I didn’t know it, a lot of you probably didn’t either. Now you do.

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