One of the side benefits of gaining gay marriage equality is that it shows some of the ways in which anything less than marriage is inadequate. Take a look at the below. It is a card issued to couples who are in a domestic partnership when Washington State approved those back in 2007:
How would you like to carry that around. Laurel Ramseyer, blogger for Pam’s House Blend, states perfectly why these ‘papers please’ cards are a double-edged sword:
The cards have been a matter for mixed emotions. As intended, they provided a real measure of security to the RDP couple because all a doubter had to do was enter the card’s registration number into a box on the Secretary of State’s website to verify that the RPD was valid. In emergency situations in particular, the timeliness of this decisive verification was crucial.
The other side of the coin, however, was the discomfort of knowing that any stalker could go to the website, input your name and instantly know the identity of your spouse and confirm that you were likely to be gay, lesbian or bisexual. In a still-largely homophobic world, this was an uncomfortable level of exposure for many, and one that no heterosexual married couple must endure. Civil marriage records are public information but aren’t provided by the state in a searchable online database.
Heterosexual folks, can you imaging having to carry around a card to identify you as a spouse? What a degrading way to have your relationship recognized. This is just another example of the sham put forth that anything is equal to marriage. Thank goodness that Washington state voters have chosen to lead to provide real equality and security for all; following in the footsteps of their namesake.