In yesterday’s Huffington Post, one of the original plantiffs in the California Supreme Court case that legalized same-sex marriage, Robin Tyler, wrote about the one thing more shocking than her pending marriage to a woman: her pending marriage to a non-Jew.
Tyler (original last name: Chernick) and her partner Diane Olson plan on being married by Rabbi Denise Eger of Kol Ami, an LGBT-friendly Reform synagogue in West Hollywood, Calif. However, the wedding itself will be held on the steps of the Beverly Hills Courthouse, where Tyler fully expects a mix of drag queens and protesters.
The fascinating thing about Tyler’s column is that she is defiant and proud of her homosexuality but somewhat embarassed about not being “Jewish enough.” (Not a quote from the article–rather a prevalent syndrome afflicting the majority of American Jews.)
When a reporter from a Jewish newspaper asks her “What do you think of intermarriage?”, Tyler replies, “If women want to marry men, it’s perfectly okay with me!” Tyler talks to the reporter at length about her appreciation for Rabbi Eger in hopes of avoiding the questions “Do you keep kosher?” and “How often do you go to synagogue?” Even though Olson has a mezuzah on her front door, she suspects that it’s not good enough since no one can see it and most people enter through a doorway that lacks a mezuzah.
It is one of the great ironies of intermarriage. In mainstream American society, intermarriage is widely accepted while gay marriage is opposed by most. In the Jewish community, intermarriage is widely discouraged–if not condemned–while gay marriage is accepted–if not embraced–by most.
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