The Politico is running an article of either breathless naivete or conscious dissimulation:
The national debate over gay marriage is threatening to spill over into the military, as activists from both sides of the volatile issue work to influence the Pentagon’s policy toward gay and lesbian service members and their families.
Gay activists who succeeded last year in repealing the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law that barred gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military are now pushing for full benefits for their partners. And that’s creating a backlash from conservatives in Congress who opposed repealing the ban and had feared it might lead to the military’s recognition of gay marriage.
The national debate over gay marriage is not “spilling over” into the military – this is no accident. The repeal of DADT had much less to do with any open right to serve than it did with federalizing the national debate over gay marriage, thereby taking it out of the hands of state legislatures. The military will, by logical steps and measures, be required to treat all formalized partnerships as equal under military law. Military law is federal law, and it will be used as controlling federal precedent in civil law.
Paeans to the patriotism of those who would serve if only they could chat about their private proclivities in the workplace was never anything much more than smoke and mirrors. The real prize has always been the tax code, shared benefits, etc. In fact, “there are 1,138 federal benefits, rights and responsibilities associated with marriage.”
To pretend otherwise was a momentary tactical necessity for the gay rights movement, but for the news media to portray this as anything other than an ultimate, even if incrementalist destination is mere puffery.
The barricades of the culture wars were not battered down. They were bypassed.