For millennia of human history, the institution of marriage has always been understood as being between a man and a woman. Even in cultures where the practice of homosexuality was widespread, if someone had suggested widening the legal definition of marriage to include same-sex relationships, no one would have taken you seriously. So why now, all of a sudden, are so many states and nations jumping on the bandwagon to make marriage mean something else?
Clearly, there is no single explanation, but I suspect that one key factor has been the persistent erosion of the gender polarity that occurred throughout the 20th century. At least, that is what I argued in an article for the Colson Center titled "How Gay 'Marriage' Became Plausible."
Throughout the last century feminist writers kept telling us that gender is irrelevant in man-woman relationships, including the relationship of marriage. What happens if you consider gender to be a functional irrelevancy long enough is that suddenly same-sex marriage, in which gender is a formal irrelevancy, starts to seem a lot more plausible.
As feminists continually downplayed the significance that gender had within society, reducing it to an irrelevancy like the color of a person’s eyes, it was inevitable that we would reach a point where gender is seen to be irrelevant in marriage too.
As the significance of gender was gradually evaporated from the outworking of marriage, it was inevitable that we would reach a point where it no longer seemed so strange for it to also be evaporated from the definition of marriage itself.
What started with feminism attempting to empty marriage of all gender roles, ends up with the homosexual community attempting to empty marriage of any necessary relation to gender whatsoever.
These prior ideas about gender created plausibility structures in which the notion of gay “marriage” no longer seems so strange.
To read more about this, and to see some quotations from feminists that support the above contentions, click on the link below: