I remain ambivalent about marriage as the centerpiece of the struggle for LGBT rights, not in the least because, for all the reasons I mention above, it remains a restrictive and selective civil institution. Why, for example, shouldn’t a single person be able to sponsor the legal immigration of his best friend or an adult caring for an elderly person in her home receive the same tax benefits as a married couple?

Jacob Bacharach. I have asked just this question many, many times. I cannot see, nor have I ever been able to see, why, in cases where children are not involved, the state should have such a compelling interest in whether (for instance) a couple living together have a sexual relationship as opposed to a Platonic friendship.