When you want a sense of how rapidly things change, it helps to read the New York Times. Especially the times of over 40 years ago, when titles like “Miss” were used. The Times will no longer use the title “Mrs.” to refer to women, even married ones.
More interesting is this story in the paper about the first homosexual “marriage,” undertaken in 1971. Some cherce tidbits:
In 2013, when the Minnesota Legislature authorized same-sex marriage and a state senator announced, “Today, love wins,” Mr. McConnell watched, enthralled, from the gallery. But the couple did not join the rush for an undisputed license.
“No,” Mr. Baker said, pounding an oak table in their living room. “To reapply now becomes an admission that what we did was not legal, and I will never admit that.”
Hmmm. What did they do that might not have been “legal?”
Mr. Baker, meanwhile, had devised a roundabout way to get married. First, Mr. McConnell legally adopted him, which gave them inheritance and other legal protections. At the same time, Mr. Baker changed his name to the gender-neutral Pat Lyn McConnell, though he continued as Jack Baker in public.
They went to stay with friends in Blue Earth County, to the southwest, where Mr. McConnell applied for and received a marriage license from an unsuspecting clerk, who did not know about the legal adoption. They wed on Sept. 3, 1971, in Minneapolis.
So, to get this straight. (Oh, wait, we CERTAINLY don’t want to do that…) Mr. McConnell married his own legally adopted child?
But leave that by the wayside. Peer through a lens at what people without the threat of retribution said and did over 40 years ago.
When they presented their challenge to the Minnesota Supreme Court, one of the justices turned his chair around in contempt. The court declared, “The institution of marriage as a union of man and woman, uniquely involving the procreation and rearing of children within a family, is as old as the Book of Genesis.”
In 1970, after the publicity about the couple’s marriage application, the University of Minnesota regents rescinded Mr. McConnell’s job offer. …
Devastated, he sued in federal court but ultimately lost; the appeals court admonished him for trying to “foist tacit approval of this socially repugnant concept upon his employer.”
In Look magazine’s Jan. 26, 1971, issue on “The American Family,” they were featured as “The Homosexual Couple.”
“Some homosexuals — a minority — live together in stable, often long-lasting relationships, like Baker’s and McConnell’s,” the article said.
Yeah, that is completely changed now. “79% of homosexual men say over half of sex partners are strangers…”
I never thought I would miss the 70s, or consider 1971 to be a time of sanity.