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Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:11 PM

Married men are Husbands, but don't always have Wives

This is in LBN, but the interesting topic has General Discussion written all over it.

The Associated Press on Thursday updated its style-book so that married individuals will be referred to as husband and wife, regardless of whether they are in a same-sex marriage. The change comes a week after the AP received criticism for an internal memo designating the word "partners" for individuals in same-sex marriages.

The following entry was added to the style-book, online and soon in print as well:

husband, wife Regardless of sexual orientation, husband or wife is acceptable in all references to individuals in any legally recognized marriage. Spouse or partner may be used if requested.

http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/entry/ap-to-use-husband-wife-regardless-of-sexual

http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014405538


So Carol's wife is Jane. Jane's wife is Carol. Jane is Carol's wife, etc..
Ted's wife is Bernice. Bernice's husband is Ted.
Steve's husband is Adam. Adam's husband is Steve. (Deal with it, fundies)

I agree with this move because it denotes real equality. The point is that as long as our word for married man is husband, that word should not be reserved for heterosexuals. Key point there—this assumes that the words husband and wife are going to be used in any instance. Arguing that all married people should be called partners is a fine argument, but everything I am saying assumes that the words husband and wife will continue to be used to descride some persons.

If our terms that connote real authentic marriage are to be set aside and replaced with "partner" it is, however well-intended, effectively a separate-but-equal sort of thing; a gratuitous preservation of difference.

We have gendered words in the language and a style-book is about using language. A man who has a legal marriage bond to another person is a husband. The day before the wedding he was not a husband. We are supposed to consider that bond and legal process (becoming a person's husband) as the same bond no matter the sex of the other person.

(Now, given the cultural baggage of "wife" I can see some women nothing feeling positive about the term, but that applies to all woman regardless of sexual orientation.)

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Reply Married men are Husbands, but don't always have Wives (Original post)
cthulu2016 Feb 2013 OP
Behind the Aegis Feb 2013 #1
alarimer Feb 2013 #2
randome Feb 2013 #4
Behind the Aegis Feb 2013 #5
handmade34 Feb 2013 #3
gollygee Feb 2013 #6

Response to cthulu2016 (Original post)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:14 PM

1. Right now, "partner" is all I have.

Today is our 11 year anniversary and he is NOT my "husband" nor is he mine, so he is my "partner." Until there is marriage equality, things like this will always be a reminder we aren't equal.

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Response to cthulu2016 (Original post)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:17 PM

2. In other countries, they use "partner" for everyone.

Married, unmarried, gay or straight. I think that's better.

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Response to alarimer (Reply #2)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:22 PM

4. Me, too. Partner, spouse, the hell with identifying people based on gender.

But 'partner' sounds better.

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Response to randome (Reply #4)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:26 PM

5. The issue is partner can mean business, sports, and any number of things.

"Spouse," however, is "partner"-specific in that it refers to marriage. I use partner because I don't have another option. My mother hated it because it sounds like a "business" thing. I can see why some want to have gender-neutral terms, but I see no problem with terms that do identify gender (husband, wife).

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Response to cthulu2016 (Original post)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:21 PM

3. off subject a bit...

I have been working in the schools testing and a question children have to answer is who lives in their home, with set choices... but not choice to name two fathers or two mothers... the culture MUST change as well as the nomenclature!!!!!

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Response to cthulu2016 (Original post)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:51 PM

6. That's good that they responded to the criticism positively

They don't make rules for any reason but to have everyone in a newspaper handle things the same, and they obviously had a blind spot as far as same-sex marriages went and didn't know how to handle it and dealt with it badly. But they heard what people said, learned, and changed. Yay!

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