Maggie Gallagher
This May 17 marks two important events in our American life: the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, and the introduction of court-imposed same-sex marriage in Massachusetts.

This surely is not a coincidence. The Massachusetts court, in so timing its decision, was giving a moral lecture, a judicial parable, a little self-important sermon to the American people. Moral progress demands expanding our definition of marriage to include same-sex couples because separate is not equal.

Brown v. Board of Education marked the end of the doctrine of "separate but equal" when it comes to race. Goodridge v. Massachusetts, by contrast, marks the end of the marriage idea as we have known it.

Take a look at the new unisex marriage licenses that Gov. Romney has decided (without any authorization by the state legislature) to create. Gone is the language of bride and groom, husband and wife, replaced by the new, deeply moving announcement that "Party A" is going to join with "Party B" in something the court insists we call marriage. Gone as well is the whole set of deeply ingrained ideas associated with marriage as the union of opposite sexes: Marriage is more than couple-love; it is the means by which the human race bridges the gender divide, creates mothers and fathers for children, and makes the next generation happen.

Advocates of same-sex marriage try to make it sound as bourgeois as possible, but gay marriage is really the triumph of the most radical ideas of the sexual revolution: that gender doesn't matter, children are secondary, expressing your authentic sexual self is more important than, well, practically anything else.

For African-Americans, the misuse of the moral capital of the civil rights movement to endorse this new sexual agenda is particularly trying. The Goodridge court decision and its advocates would have us believe that gay marriage, like Brown v. Board of Education, represents moral progress -- the courts stepping in to re-engineer society along better, higher, more just lines. Black America knows better than anyone else the high price children pay for the sexual agendas of adults.

Maggie Gallagher

Maggie Gallagher is a nationally syndicated columnist, a leading voice in the new marriage movement and co-author of The Case for Marriage: Why Married People Are Happier, Healthier, and Better Off Financially.