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Opening Arguments

The gay-marriage two-step

A little bit of journalistic hyperbole here:

A Cheney family feud erupted on Facebook after Liz Cheney reiterated her opposition to same-sex marriage in an interview with "Fox News Sunday" -- despite her sister Mary Cheney, who is gay, having recently married her longtime partner. 


Liz Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, was asked about her position on gay marriage and her sister's personal life on "Fox News Sunday."   

"Listen, I love Mary very much. I love her family very much.  This is just an issue in which we disagree," she said.

[. . .]

Mary Cheney also chimed in, writing: "Liz - this isn't just an issue on which we disagree - you're just wrong - and on the wrong side of history."

Granted, there can be a fine line between "disagreement between siblings and "family feud," but this seems on the disagreement side to me. Maybe it's my Appalachian upbringing, but to me it ain't a feud until it goes on for generations. Everybody would eventually forget what started the thing, but nodody would fail to keep the gun handy in the parlor. Having been involved in sibling disagreements all my life, "We don't merely disagree, you're just wrong" is exactly the kind of thing I've said to my brother and heard from him.

I have to say, though, that Liz is the one on shaky ground here.  She is running for office as a (very) conservative Republican, and primary voters aren't inclined to cut anybody any slack on the issue. On the other hand, she has to deal with the personal reality that the issue has stopped being just one of mere theory in her family. Her effort to walk that fine line has resulted in "I wouldn't vote to put a same-sex-marriage ban into the Constitution, but I do believe in the traditional definition of marriage." That's a weird, 180 turn on the Teddy Kennedy "I personally oppose abortion with every fiber of my being but would never take away the right to choose it" two-step.