[C]onsider what the bill, in its timidity, does not do: It does not ban gay marriage. It doesn’t even require that states that adopt gay marriage do so through democratic means. To the citizens of Hawaii, where a handful of lawyers appear poised to impose gay marriage on the majority, the federal government turns its back, offering no relief. A nation which a hundred years ago unself-consciously refused to admit Utah as a state unless and until it renounced polygamy, no longer has enough moral confidence to insist on a common culture of marriage. As I said: timid.
That slippery slope goes both ways.