Why I hate pressure groups

February 26, 2004

Because of their idiotic insistence on their preferred terminology. From Clay’s post on the proper terminology on the gay-people-getting-married dustup.

“Gay marriage” is a stupid thing to call it. Gay people can get married now. Just not to other gay people of the same gender. Thus, “same-sex marriage” can be used as an alternative.

The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association does not agree with either of the terms. … Their point:

The terms ‘gay marriage’ and ‘same-sex marriage’ are inaccurate and misleading. The decision made by the Massachusetts court affects the state?s existing marriage law. The court has ordered the state to apply the existing law equally to gay and lesbian couples as early as May 2004. The accurate terminology on-air, in headlines and in body type should be ‘marriage for gays and lesbians.

Right, like we’re going to be able to fit that in every headline on the issue — and, by implication, we are wrong if we don’t. What are we supposed to think of people who make these unworkable style declarations?

Same-sex marriage is long enough — and it’s correct, regardless of the spinmeisters; fundamentally the issue comes down to people of the same sex getting married. I’m not even troubled all that much by “gay marriage.” When it’s in display type, people know what it means, and if they don’t, they can read the story.

Having ranted, I’ll concede “marriage for gays and lesbians” is at least neutral — I can’t wait for the politically charged terms both sides are cooking up to make their side sound virtuous and the other look like Satan’s stepchild.

One Response to Why I hate pressure groups

  1. Bill on February 27, 2004 at 2:40 pm

    So, so ridiculous. Gay people can get married now (“marriage for gays and lesbians”!), but those marriages are not of the gay variety. Same-sex is better, but there’s nothing wrong with “gay marriage.”
    On the other hand, lest I come off as insensitive, I saw the term “Indian gaming tribes” in a couple of stories recently and took it upon myself to get offended. It would be easy to read over such a phrase — it’s clear what is meant, after all — but think about it: Indian gaming tribes! What, the tribes were formed solely for the purpose of slots and blackjack? These are Indian tribes that happen to own casinos, or “casino-owning Indian tribes.” There are plenty of ways you could say that without inventing a “gaming tribe.”
    And then there’s the problem of using “gaming” as a euphemism for gambling.