Westward the Course of Empire Makes Us Gay

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During the floor debate over civil unions in the Illinois legislature, Edward Gibbon Ron Stephens (R-Greenville) said one of the most awesomest things anyone's ever used to combat state recognition of teh gay.

At about a minute and a half in, he suggests that the "sociological history" of "societies that have failed" shows that "open homosexuality becomes accepted in the 'higher society.'" Just like the Greeks and the Romans!

Here's how the reliably anodyne Tribune editorial board framed Stephens's opposition:

Many who oppose civil unions believe it is a step toward allowing gays to wed — and many who work for civil unions will freely admit that gay marriage is their eventual goal. That's why Rep. Ron Stephens, R-Greenville, an opponent, called the bill "a slippery slope."

Well, sure, but gay marriage is just one stop on the slippery slope. After that there's lead poisoning and Visigoths. Also, he called civil unions a "precipice." So it's a precipice above a slippery slope? Could someone diagram that for me?

I'm just sort of surprised—although maybe I shouldn't be—that Rep. Stephens's perfectly berserk and entertaining logic was whittled down to the sort of meaningless, generic, I Can't Believe It's Not Bigotry! statement that keeps opposition to civil unions demirespectable.

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