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Houston Voice, No. 1004, January 21, 2000
File 010
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Houston Voice, No. 1004, January 21, 2000 - File 010. 2000-01-21. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. December 15, 2017. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/1081/show/1061.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(2000-01-21). Houston Voice, No. 1004, January 21, 2000 - File 010. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/1081/show/1061

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Voice, No. 1004, January 21, 2000 - File 010, 2000-01-21, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed December 15, 2017, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/1081/show/1061.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Voice, No. 1004, January 21, 2000
Contributor
  • Hennie, Matthew A.
Publisher Window Media
Date January 21, 2000
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 31485329
Rights In Copyright: This item is protected by copyright. Copyright to this resource is held by the creator or current rights holder, and the resource is provided here for educational purposes. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without permission of the copyright owner. Users assume full responsibility for any infringement of copyright or related rights.
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 010
Transcript HOUSTON VOICE • JANUARY 21, 2000 VOICES AND ECHOES VIEWPOINT Straight couples will suffer from marriage gentrification by MICHAEL ALVEAR I don't blame straight people for trying to keep us from getting married. We're going to tear down their hallowed institution, and they know it. Well, parts of it, anyway. We'll do to marriage what we've done to other dilapidated institutions—fix it up, increase the property value and make it a place everyone wants to live in. If gay people move into marriage like we move into run-down, in-town neighborhoods, straight people can expect all the problems created by urban gentrification. Namely, that some of them will be forced out. Urban gentrification tends to displace retirees, households on fixed income and families who simply can't afford the rising rents and property taxes. The same thing will happen with marriage gentrification. There will be victims: couples who have fixed intellectual incomes (and won't be able to afford the rising level of thinking), families who don't respect diversity and couples who buckle at the difficulty of propping up loveless marriages in the face of loving ones. It's fair to take into consideration displaced straight couples before allowing gay marriage. Where will these people go pine the institution is refurbished? A cheaper part of town, no doubt, but we have to make provisions. That's why I'm proposing that gay activists back down from their demands of full equality under the law and back a more modest approach. Namely, creating a government incentive program that slowly introduces gay marriage while softening the blow to straight couples who'll be uprooted by the beautification process. The plan: Get rid of DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) and replace it with MARGE (Marriage Gentrification Enactment). Modeled after President Clinton's "empowerment zones," we'd identify 20 marriage-distressed communities—"MARGE zones"—and make their gay residents eligible for marriage. These newly married gay couples would also receive federal grants and tax- exempt bonds to finance sweeping revital- ization and marriage-creation programs. This would have a dramatic effect in marriage-poor areas, which tend to have an astronomical number of divorces, unwed mothers and dateless gay men. Part of the program would also involve a set-aside for the covenant-challenged: those straight couples who can't or won't stay in an institution where love and commitment are the only criteria for residence. Can MARGE work? Are gay people tal ented and creative enough to reverse the blight and moral decay that straight people have brought to marriage? Hard to say, really. We're not exactly strangers to the blight and moral decay thing. Still, if we can make neighborhoods walkable, we can make marriages livable. Marriage is a once-grand neighborhood in need of renovation. And who better to do it than us? You don't want a tract-housing specialist. You want somebody who's going to do with air, light and color what Madonna did with tits, clothes and dyes. Across America, low-marriage neighborhoods could be reclaimed by identifying them as MARGE zones. Armed with engineering studies, architectural plans and full-length make-up mirrors, we could actually end up rehabilitating what thrice-married, abortion-paying, DOMA- author Bob Barr thinks we'll destroy. Urban and marriage gentrification share the same goals—safe, well-lit streets (though I must say the current lighting may be too harsh for the gay sensibility), more constructive behavior (marrying out of love, not out of expectation), preservation of beauty (fighting for character rather than sprawl) and a culture of service to others (children to some, three-ways to others). The only problem 1 see with MARGE is HOMER (Homosexual Egos in the way of Marriage Residency), a loud-mouth, self- sabotaging gay activist off-shoot that is sure to develop in response. Usually, when a good idea like MARGE meets a bad organization like HOMER, our civil rights prospects are sure to suffer. Michael Ahvar lias never renovated anything in hit life, with the possible exception of his reputation, which is still under construction. You am reach him at mikeakvar@aol.com Let us know what you think Send the editor your letters (400 words maximum) or op-ed submissions (800 words maximum). Names may be withheld upon request, but submissions must include a name and phone number for verification. Houston Voice, 500 Lovett, Suite 200, Houston, TX 77006 fax: 713-529-9531 • e-mail: editor@houstonvoice.com THIS YEAR I will set out to do something great pwwAuunww^ for myself. MUSCLE MECHANICS" PERSONAL FITNESS STUDIO 713.523.5330 617 Richmond • NEW LOCATION! 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