Once it was enough to accept norms of civility -- to speak and treat each other with respect in spite of our important moral differences and disagreements. That was so 2003. Now gay leaders expect that those who disagree with them will be silent or face a wall of wrath.
The American people are not yet on board with this historic re-valuation of values. That's clear from two new polls this week showing that the Marriage Amendment in North Carolina, despite being outspent and virtually orphaned by national conservative figures, is set to win by anywhere from 14 points to 20 points.
This is the same week when Rod Dreher wrote a blog post, 'The Rout of the Right on Gay Marriage,' claiming, 'I know my fellow social and religious conservatives don't like to hear this, but Daniel McCarthy explains why we can't win the gay marriage fight.'
Actually, Rod, I understand your pessimism, but please drop the 'nobody likes to hear this, I'm being brave' pose. You are among a large number of conservative elites who want to declare the war over and get out of the way. Everyone looking at the wall of hatred coming our way wants to duck, including me.
But the American people have not yet gotten the memo.
The will to lose on gay marriage among conservative elites is palpable. But thankfully, the consequences of permitting marriage to be remade in the image of the Dan Savages of America are now equally clear. When Dan Savage's side wins, support for gay sex and marriage will not be optional.
Even a schoolchild can see that.
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.