In his April 2 op-ed column, “Hacks without heart,” Richard Cohen wrote: “Same-sex marriage will surely come. It is right. It makes sense. It is even romantic.” Actually, same-sex marriage is more implausible than inevitable. And romance has nothing to do with the state’s interest in marriage.

The current tsunami of support for same-sex marriage is manufactured and, like all tsunamis, will subside. That’s why there is so much urgency associated with the issue: Proponents know the aura of fairness and equality associated with the same-sex marriage movement might soon dissipate, so substantive public discourse must be avoided and quick action — via judicial, executive or legislative fiat — sought.

Same-sex marriage is implausible because “marriage” can be applied to two men or two women only in a metaphoric way. Nowhere on a marriage license application in any state are applicants asked, “Do you love each other?” Yet this is the basis on which same-sex marriage proponents seek to change our laws. Only those of us who are gay demand that the state celebrate our romantic lives.

Doug Mainwaring, Gaithersburg

The writer is a co-founder of the National Capital Tea Party Patriots.

I beg to differ with Richard Cohen. The passage of the Defense of Marriage Act in the 1990s was a clever political ploy by the pro-gay-marriage forces, not a cowardly act. At that time, there was a serious possibility that a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage could be enacted. The Clinton administration bought time for supporters of same-sex marriage by endorsing the Defense of Marriage Act, even though it was clearly unconstitutional.

Many who voted for this act may not have recognized this for the delaying tactic that it was, but that was the point. And, amazingly, the ploy worked to perfection, something that rarely happens in politics. As more states have legalized gay marriage and opinions on the subject have rapidly changed, the possibility of a constitutional amendment has dropped to nearly zero.

Duncan Nixon, Palmyra, Va.