Guest Blogger

Gay Marriage: What's the fuss about?

Filed By Guest Blogger | June 15, 2008 7:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, Marriage Equality, The Movement
Tags: chemistry.com, gay marriage, Helen Fisher, marriage equality, same-sex marriage

Editors' Note: Guest blogger, Dr. Helen Fisher, is the founder and Chief Scientific Advisor to Chemistry.com. Dr. Fisher will be posting every Sunday evening for the next month, so someone fix her a plate.

I am so delighted to be a part of The Bilerico Project and blog over the next few weeks. It is an honor to be writing alongside the other contributors, especially during this momentous week.

Dr-Helen-Fisher.jpgForemost, I am thrilled for the men and women who will finally be able to marry. I have never understood why some people get so upset about gay marriage. I study the human brain. And I have long maintained that humanity has evolved three distinct brain systems for mating and reproduction: the sex drive, intense romantic love, and deep attachment to a long term partner. And when I gave a questionnaire on romantic love to 437 Americans and 402 Japanese, I found that my homosexual participants expressed just as much romantic passion as did my heterosexuals. Gays and lesbians, I am convinced, have inherited exactly the same brain networks for romantic love and deep attachment as everybody else. So I am not surprised that many want to marry. It's natural.

So what's the fuss about? Why have some Americans been (and continue to be) so deeply opposed to gay marriage? We all know that religion is, at least in part, accountable. Marriage has long been a custom in every society on earth. But the early Christian Fathers hijacked this ancient tradition and designated it a sacrament. So today some Christians regard marriage as their property - to be allocated only according to their strictures.

But those opposed to gay marriage seem so riled that I have come to believe they are also responding from some primordial part of the brain associated with self preservation. Perhaps these Christians fear that their "god given" institution for reproduction will be diminished if they permit non-reproducing individuals to marry, thereby threatening the future of their own DNA. It really makes no sense. Moreover, it's a pity these Christians can't behave more like Christians and love their neighbors as they love themselves.

But in any case, today is a day of celebration. My heart goes out to everyone in the gay community. Many don't want to marry, as many heterosexuals don't either. But at least if you want to, and you live in the state of California: you can. BRAVO.

Last, as Chief Scientific Advisor to Chemistry.com, I would like to share that we're celebrating love by offering free trials to Chemistry.com for all Californians. Everyone deserves the chance to find a great relationship.

Subscribe to our RSS feed to get great Bilerico content as soon as new posts are added!


Recent Entries Filed under The Movement:

Leave a comment

We want to know your opinion on this issue! While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

The editorial team will delete a comment that is off-topic, abusive, exceptionally incoherent, includes a slur or is soliciting and/or advertising. Repeated violations of the policy will result in revocation of your user account. Please keep in mind that this is our online home; ill-mannered house guests will be shown the door.


Dr. Fisher, welcome to Bilerico. I found your first posting here very encouraging. I realize that there are plenty of people out there who can see through the religious argument for same-sex marriage, and you are one of them.

I'm hoping that there will be future pieces on the trans connection in all of this. As a trans women who has a trans woman as a girlfriend, there are a lot of interesting variables that gay or straight couples don't face, but there are a lot of similarities. I am a strong believer of wanting to see trans people to get over the fear of love and sex, because there are so many who have been hurt by decades of abuse on all levels.

You will be a great addition to this beautiful blog. Thank you for all you do.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 16, 2008 7:20 AM

In consideration of the fact that the world has tripled in population in the past sixty years it seems they may breed all of us out of existence.

Thank you for your thoughtful post Dr. Fisher.

Welcome to Bilerico, Dr. Fisher. I'm thrilled to see you sharing in the joy of California's marriage equality this week.

I've never understood the religious arguments against same-sex marriage. Christ didn't say anything about gay people other than to "love each other." I'd say love would trump all - and in this case it certainly does.

Thanks for the great post, Dr. Fisher. We are happy to have you here at Bilerico!

Interesting. Altho I don't think that the fuss has much to do with a drive to procreation, considering how anti-procreation many of these same people are when we're talking about non-white women.

Oh, wait....

mark coughlin | June 16, 2008 8:20 PM

dr helen thank you for validating my feelings. im from boston moved to texas and thought i would try to find decent people because bars are not the place to meet a partner. everyone tries to date me but because gay marriage is legal in mass thats my goal someday but im finding that even my shrink down here in texas is telling me how aweful it is that i want the person that i deem loves me to have the little i got to keep my memory alive after i die and i was starting to lose my own identity again but u helped me get back up after a tuff blow on the subject from a friend. thank you dr helen

Anthony Crealese | June 16, 2008 8:48 PM

Dr. Fisher I think you are doing wonderful work. Being caught in the middle gives me a great in sight for both sides, but i really don't get why people are so stupid sometimes. I feel that if the Christians weren't so blind to the fact that the New Testament isn't at all gods words they'd realize that god doesn't mind gays, bisexuals, lesbians, transexuals, and transgenders. Nothing in the Old Testament says that god is against them. I'm 18 and i consider myself to be an activist for not only the rights for gays, isexuals, lesbians, transexuals, and transgenders, but also an advocate for mother nautre, womans rights, and rights for every peson of every ethnicity. I feel that everyone should be treated the same no matter what because we are all the same and someday i hope to do some good for this world like you do.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 17, 2008 7:53 AM

Anthony I just love you! Your feelings are so pure (and so very right) that I hesitate to mention the facts in the Old Testament Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 refer to homosexual behavior as an abomination. I joke about throwing away the entire bible with the exception of the 23rd psalm. Something I do know is that Jesus was never quoted condemning any person of his father's creation with the exception of temple money lenders. Stay strong Anthony, and keep to the purist and best feelings in your heart. You are right and you are the future (except that I now have to figure out what an "isexual" is :).