In Slang, to “Gay Marry” Is Legal

Accepting gay marriage in language is more than just wordplay. Eventually, according to my crystal ball, gay marriage will be legal everywhere....

Accepting gay marriage in language is more than just wordplay.

Eventually, according to my crystal ball, gay marriage will be legal everywhere. I predict that opposition to the civil right of marriage will be looked back at as vicious, repressive, dark-ages nonsense by our enlightened successors.But that golden age may be far off; we're still living in a time when batty objections to gay marriage flourish. Witness, for example, the idea that if we expand marriage beyond man-and-woman nuptials, anything could happen. Polygamy running amuck! Men marrying cats! Cat ladies marrying dogs! In short, marriage-pocalypse now.Well, the nutjobbers and bigots were right. Gay marriage does allow for unnatural unions undreamt of by the stars above or the giant spitting earthworms below-but only in the playful world of slang, where to gay marry has become an amusing idiom indeed. Check these examples out:"I going [sic] to do unspeakable things to this sandwich. Like gay-marry it."June 23, 2009, Alison Agosti, Twitter"gaston213 @everythingpre I'm so in love with Universal Search I might just try to gay marry it. Sigh."June 9, 2009, Gary Gaston, Twitter"Had to waylay. See, I'm a dirty whore for salsa. I'd gay-marry salsa if it was legal. When I run out of chips, I resort to drinking it."May 15, 2009, Andrew Kiraly, Las Vegas CityLife BlogsIt's the nature of language to colloquialize everything-look how fast hiking the Appalachian trail got picked up as a euphemism for infidelity-but this particular development is interesting both linguistically and culturally. The linguistic part was commented on last year by Stanford linguist Arnold Zwicky on Language Log, where he noted that gay-marry is a two-part back-formed verb (more on what that means here), spun off of gay marriage, just as free associate and bartend developed from free association and bartender. Zwicky found the new verb being used literally ("That's 41 states' worth of gays that need a place to gay marry and settle down.") as well as more fancifully ("Here are the best and worst of the week that was: the ideas, goods and people we want to gay marry … and the ones John McCain would appoint strict constitutionalist jurists to restrict our access to."). The earliest example of the second category I can find is from 2005: "I love football. If I could, I would gay marry it." (Sept. 11, 2005, Evan Kessler.)Gay-marrying football would make for quite a Sportscenter moment, but for even more fun with the term, Pinko Magazine gives the tired "What's Hot/What's Not?" feature a liberal-heathen spin: "Gay Marry It...or Abort It?" In a similar vein, "Marry, Boff, or Kill?" gets a makeover in Tres Sugar as "Do, Dump, or Gay Marry?" These variations are in the spirit of the familiar childhood taunt, "If you like X so much, why don't you marry it?" 30 Rock fanatics will recognize that the Tracy Jordan expression "I love X so much, I want to take it behind the middle school and get it pregnant" serves the same function.A few years ago, the movie Brokeback Mountain gave rise to new common slang for all things homosexual. Gay-marry, interestingly, is pretty close to the opposite. The Brokeback trend inspired expressions like go all Brokeback and Brokeback marriage, which The Word Spy defines asBrokeback alluded to gayness and came to mean it literally, often in an insulting way.On the other hand, while gay marry literally means to marry someone of the same sex, it now also means to have an exaggerated enthusiasm for anything, with little implication of homosexuality, and no insult either. By email, linguist Zwicky agreed, saying, "gay marry seems to have picked up the positive connotations associated with weddings, especially the same-sex weddings that have gotten so much good press coverage (with people as pleased as anything to be getting married)."Underneath the slangy silliness, there is a significance to this trend: the colloquializing of gay marriage is one more sign of how comfortable many people are with the concept. Non-gay people (many of us, anyway) want to support gay marriage, and besides showing support in serious ways like voting, we can accept it in our slang. I may not want to marry a fellow dude, but I do want other dudes to be able to marry. It's on my mind enough that, like others, I might say I want to gay-marry the Three Floyd's Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout. Or the fifth season of The Shield. I'd gay-marry them both at once, if I could. Such linguistic innovation is small, but it might show our collective heart is in the right place.
via Collection of the New-York Historical Society / Wikimedia Commons

Fredrick Douglass was born into slavery in 1818. At the age of 10 he was given to the Auld family.

As a child, he worked as a house slave and was able to learn to read and write, and he attempted to teach his fellow slaves the same skills.

At the age of 15, he was given to Thomas Auld, a cruel man who beat and starved his slaves and thwarted any opportunity for them to practice their faith or to learn to read or write.

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via Thomas Ledia / Wikimedia Commons

On April 20, 1889 at the Braunau am Inn, in Upper Austria Salzburger located at Vorstadt 15, Alois and Klara Hitler brought a son into the world. They named him Adolph.

Little did they know he would grow up to be one of the greatest forces of evil the world has ever known.

The Hitlers moved out of the Braunau am Inn when Adolph was three, but the three-story butter-colored building still stands. It has been the subject of controversy for seven decades.

via Thomas Ledia / Wikimedia Commons

The building was a meeting place for Nazi loyalists in the 1930s and '40s. After World War II, the building has become an informal pilgrimage site for neo-Nazis and veterans to glorify the murderous dictator.

The building was a thorn in the side to local government and residents to say the least.

RELATED: He photographed Nazi atrocities and buried the negatives. The unearthed images are unforgettable.

For years it was owned by Gerlinde Pommer, a descendant of the original owners. The Austrian government made numerous attempts to purchase it from her, but to no avail. The building has served many purposes, a school, a library, and a makeshift museum.

In 1989, a stone from the building was inscribed with:

"For Peace, Freedom

and Democracy.

Never Again Fascism.

Millions of Dead Remind [us]."

via Jo Oh / Wikimedia Commons

For three decades it was home to an organization that offered support and integration assistance for disabled people. But in 2011, the organization vacated the property because Pommer refused to bring it up to code.

RELATED: 'High Castle' producers destroyed every swastika used on the show and the video is oh-so satisfying

In 2017, the fight between the government and Pommer ended with it seizing the property. Authorities said it would get a "thorough architectural remodeling is necessary to permanently prevent the recognition and the symbolism of the building."

Now, the government intends to turn it into a police station which will surely deter any neo-Nazis from hanging around the building.

Austria has strict anti-Nazi laws that aim to prohibit any potential Nazi revival. The laws state that anyone who denies, belittles, condones or tries to justify the Nazi genocide or other Nazi crimes against humanity shall be punished with imprisonment for one year up to ten years.

In Austria the anti-Nazi laws are so strict one can go to prison for making the Nazi hand salute or saying "Heil Hitler."

"The future use of the house by the police should send an unmistakable signal that the role of this building as a memorial to the Nazis has been permanently revoked," Austria's IInterior Minister, Wolfgang Peschorn said in a statement.

The house is set to be redesigned following an international architectural competition.

via Chela Horsdal / Twitter

Amazon's "The Man in the High Castle" debuted the first episode of its final season last week.

The show is loosely based on an alternative history novel by Philip K. Dick that postulates what would happen if Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan controlled the United States after being victorious in World War II.

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via Mike Mozart / Flickr

Chick-fil-A is the third-largest fast food chain in America, behind McDonald's and Starbucks, raking in over $10 billion a year.

But for years, the company has faced boycotts for supporting anti-LGBT charities, including the Salvation Army, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the Paul Anderson Youth Home.

The Salvation Army faced criticism after a leader in the organization implied that gay people "deserve to die" and the company also came under fire after refusing to offer same-sex couples health insurance. But the organization swears it's evolving on such issues.

via Thomas Hawk / Flickr

The Fellowship of Christian Athletes explicitly announced it was anti gay marriage in a recent "Statement of Faith."

God instituted marriage between one man and one woman as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. For this reason, we believe that marriage is exclusively the union of one man and one woman.

The Paul Anderson Youth Home teaches boys that homosexuality is wrong and that same-sex marriage is "rage against Jesus Christ and His values."

RELATED: The 1975's singer bravely kissed a man at a Dubai concert to protest anti-LGBT oppression

In 2012, Chick-fil-A's CEO, Dan Cathy, made anti same-sex marriage comments on a radio broadcast:

I think we are inviting God's judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, "We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage". I pray God's mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.

But the chicken giant has now decided to change it's says its charitable donation strategy because it's bad for business...Not because being homophobic is wrong.

The company recently lost several bids to provide concessions in U.S. airports. A pop-up shop in England was told it would not be renewed after eight days following LGBTQ protests.

Chick-fil-A also has plans to expand to Boston, Massachusetts where its mayor, Thomas Menino, pledged to ban the restaurant from the city.

via Wikimedia Commons

"There's no question we know that, as we go into new markets, we need to be clear about who we are," Chick-fil-A President and Chief Operating Officer Tim Tassopoulos told Bisnow. "There are lots of articles and newscasts about Chick-fil-A, and we thought we needed to be clear about our message."

RELATED: Alan Turing will appear on the 50-pound note nearly 70 years after being persecuted for his sexuality

Instead, the Chick-fil-A Foundation plans to give $9 million to organizations that support education and fight homelessness. Which is commendable regardless of the company's troubled past.

"If Chick-Fil-A is serious about their pledge to stop holding hands with divisive anti-LGBTQ activists, then further transparency is needed regarding their deep ties to organizations like Focus on the Family, which exist purely to harm LGBTQ people and families," Drew Anderson, GLAAD's director of campaigns and rapid response, said in a statement.

Chick-fil-A's decision to back down from contributing to anti-LGBT charities shows the power that people have to fight back against companies by hitting them where it really hurts — the pocket book.

The question remains: If you previously avoided Chick-fil-A because it supported anti-LGBT organizations, is it now OK to eat there? Especially when Popeye's chicken sandwich is so good people will kill for it?


Oh, irony. You are having quite a day.

The Italian region of Veneto, which includes the city of Venice, is currently experiencing historic flooding. Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro has stated that the flooding is a direct result of climate change, with the tide measuring the highest level in 50 years. The city (which is actually a collection of 100 islands in a lagoon—hence its famous canal streets), is no stranger to regular flooding, but is currently on the brink of declaring a state of emergency as waters refuse to recede.

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