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We risk creating in the Jewish community a marriage gap between Orthodox Jews and everyone else wider even than the gap along class lines that runs through the nation as a whole.
This is why liberal Jews must be willing to work towards a culture that values both independence and commitment, one that promotes the obligations and blessings of family life. We must be willing to tell children, straight and gay: Getting married and raising children (in that order) should be part of your future. This is not to demonize or ostracize anyone who takes another path. But it is to say that marriage isn’t merely a personal choice. It is a religious and moral responsibility, the bedrock of a sturdy society and the very best way to raise children.
The gay men and lesbians who have struggled so long for the right to marry are sending a powerful message. We should all strive for what they want.