Roundup on gay marriage

With California's same-sex wedding ceremonies starting Monday, news outlets wonder: Are couples feeling ambivalent? And do gay men have bigger penises?

Published June 16, 2008 10:00PM (EDT)

California's first same-sex marriages take place Monday, which means the media is busy teasing every possible angle out of the story. In the Los Angeles Times alone, one piece explores the ambivalence some gay couples feel about marriage, while yet another tells the tale of two men waiting almost 15 years to wed. The New York Times also wonders whether gay marriage is all that it's cracked up to be, in an article called "Gay Couples Find Marriage Is a Mixed Bag," which features the interesting detail that about two-thirds of same-sex marriages performed in Massachusetts in 2006 have been between women. (Apparently it's not just heterosexual men who fret about commitment.) These stories purport to explore what makes gay marriage unique but only end up underscoring the similarities of all stripes of matrimony: Some couples are eager to make their commitment official, others aren't sure they're ready, and most will find married life is tougher than they imagined.

But really, who wants to talk about marriage when you can talk about sex instead? Yet another L.A. Times piece (that makes three!) reviews the scant evidence pointing to physiological differences between heterosexuals and homosexuals. Among the article's findings is that gay men have slightly larger penises than straight guys. Take that news with a grain of salt, though: The study is based on self-reported measurements, so it's also possible that gay men exaggerated more than their hetero counterparts.

Meanwhile, in the U.K., two male Anglican priests tied the knot. The Rev. Peter Cowell and the Rev. David Lord were the first same-sex couple to be married in the Church of England. Cowell's friend, the Rev. Martin Dudley, officiated the ceremony and offered the following, very sweet, quote: "It seems to me that Jesus would have been sitting in the congregation." Don't expect them to be comparing penis sizes, though -- the wedding comes with the caveat that the new husbands must abstain from sex.

By Judy Berman

Judy Berman is a writer and editor in Brooklyn. She is a regular contributor to Salon's Broadsheet.

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