I got a challenge to place this on my blog instead, as it expands beyond the idea of gay-vs-straight to the outright attack on 1950s middle class America by the upper class going on in economics right now.
In the 1950s, The United States experienced the greatest expansion of the middle class the world has ever seen. Despite the fact of the recession/stagflation of the 1970s, this peaked into a middle class that was greater than 50% of the population by the late 1970s.
Reagan started reversing this, by cutting the tax rates on the richest 5%. From the 1950s when a single individual could work 40 hours a week and provide for a family of four to six kids, in 2009 we are finding that both parents working can't even provide for a family of 2.1 kids.
With the coming depression, this is resulting in some new definitions of what is a family, and what is a household. Homelessness, multi-generational households, friends-with-benefits, couch surfing, and dare I say even polygamy, is all becoming more common as joblessness and foreclosure force more people into considering wider options for covering the basics of food, clothing, shelter, sanitation and health care.
To that end, I propose this: I'm still not ready to move marriage beyond one man one woman, but I am ready to say, it's time for the State to exit the marriage business and enter the civil union business, for the widest possible idea of what is a civil union. We have database techniques that can list any number of partners on a contract now (we're not limited to the old non-expandable forms) and it's obvious that we need to expand the definition of what is a family, if only for economic purposes.