Journalist and gay activist Dan Savage often writes about the urban archipelago -- the American cities that are comfortable, safe islands for gays and lesbians set amid a vast sea of countryside where being openly homosexual remains a chancy, even dangerous, proposition. However, after an election in which four more states approved same-sex marriage, perhaps that sea is receding.
In fact, the map of states that now allow men to marry men and women to marry women is beginning to resemble the now familiar chart of red and blue states. It is in New England, New York, Maryland, the upper Midwest and Washington state where either voters, legislators or the courts have approved the historic shift from marriage being just a boy-and-girl thing. Those are, of course, generally true-blue Democratic strongholds.
Other blue states are likely to follow. If
The turn toward approval of same-sex marriage in several regions of the country is so sudden and so unexpected that Americans have not really begun to ponder what the ramifications of this new national divide may be. Canada legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2005 and, thus far, straight marriages among Canadians have not been sundered and God has not brought down his wrath on the land of maple leaves and Mounties. But in the United States, a national law is not in the cards.