On NRO’s The Corner Lisa Schiffren hits the nail on the head. She writes about a gay marriage ceremony on a TV drama in light of the recent California Supreme Court decision allowing real life gay “marriage,” and she says this:
I know this post is conflating a deeply problematic political reality and a fictional, barely middle-brow chick TV series. On the other hand, this — poignant commitment ceremonies broadcast in prime time, between flawed male lovers in a family where all the marriages have proved something between imperfect and a charade and yet celebrate family — this is how the culture changes. The more you show normal, gay men whose lives are admirable, who have families that love them, who embody the normal mix of complex human strengths and weaknesses — the more familiar and benign it all seems. Even if there are perfectly good reasons to oppose calling anything other than a one-man, one-woman union, with procreation as a core goal, a marriage.
It is possible that the people of California will roll back this judicial fiat. And it is possible that the states will pass whatever configuration of Defense of Marriage Acts and even perhaps a constitutional amendment protecting traditional marriage — though I am not sure that will stop anyone from going ahead with the marriage-like hoopla. I’m hoping that my embittered countrymen, clinging to their God and guns, will defeat candidates who flout their values. But I’d bet on the power of the TV writers, the movie directors, the novelists, and the ad guys any day. After all, who wants to oppose Love?
The influence of TV and the rest of popular culture extends a long way, maybe even to judges. I’m afraid that no-foolin’, real-world judicial decisions are now being made based on the idealized presumptions of TV/movie fantasyland.