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For Redder, for Bluer

Thanks for asking.

I do not intend to discuss where my Republican wife stands on any issue, foreign or domestic. That's for her to say -- which, I assure you, she is quite capable of doing without prompting. But I will take this opportunity to say a few post-Valentine's Day words about marriage, and what it's all about, at least from where I sit.

Real relationships, ones that last, are based on something more than popular opinion or politics. People who are devoted to one another tend to reach that blessed state because of mutual attraction and affection, not because of their joint affinity for stem cell research, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the New Deal or a deep aversion to global warming. What's more, any commitment that rests on a shared infatuation with tax cuts, personal savings accounts and the spread of liberty to the despotic world is pretty darned shallow and unlikely to last.

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Marriage in the March of Time (The Washington Post, Feb 12, 2005)
Bridging the Great Divide (Cont'd) (The Washington Post, Feb 5, 2005)
Bridging the Great Divide (The Washington Post, Jan 29, 2005)
About Colbert King

That will come as no surprise to most of you residing well beyond the Beltway. Unfortunately, in this politically partisan city, too many people fervently believe that ideology goes to the heart of what a person is. Therefore, they select their friends, housemates, co-religionists and neighborhoods on that basis.

There are folks in this town who are incapable of viewing someone with a different party affiliation or ideological orientation as either having values worth sharing or capable of putting love first and above all else.

Of course, similar blinders are worn by people incapable of seeing beyond skin color or those who fear, if not loathe, same-sex relationships. They are racial, sexual and ideological bitter-enders. And they are the real losers.

Their hostility prevents them from seeing what's on a person's inside -- those parts on which love, ecstasy, interdependence and enduring relationships are built.

Last weekend a Northwest Washington dining room table was filled with a handful of couples celebrating Valentine's Day. They hailed from red and blue states and alma maters that spanned the nation. Their views extended across the ideological spectrum as well. But that's not what made the evening fun.

They traded amusing stories about how they met their mates, and the American historical characters they admired. And they slipped into conversations about the sort of things that adults comfortable within their own skins actually talk about. They laughed a lot. And party registration didn't count for a thing.

But that gathering also took place behind closed doors.


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