George F. Will’s March 17 op-ed column on same-sex marriage, “What comes after ‘I do’?,” inverted the logic behind the equal-protection clause. Would he put the burden of proof on those advocating equal rights to marry? The Constitution puts the burden of proof on those who would deny equal rights. And Mr. Will essentially made the case that this burden cannot be successfully carried. There is no evidence, and therefore no compelling case, that the government can or should deny the right to marry based on gender.

David Leslie, Des Moines

The headline on George F. Will’s column asked, “What comes after ‘I do’?” The answer is simple: “None of your business.” To regard, as Mr. Will does, any form of marriage as a social experiment deserving of his convoluted analysis is inherently wrong.

Marriage in personal terms is based on romantic love (in our Western tradition) and, as codified in law, conveys certain legal and economic benefits. To deny those benefits on the basis of sexual orientation is, from a constitutional standpoint, discrimination pure and simple. “Equal protection” was enshrined in the Constitution by our Founding Fathers, and in those shoes we must walk — even if they pinch a bit.

Ralph M. Hitchens, Poolesville

George F. Will quotes the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan stating that “social scientists are frequently caught up in the politics which their work necessarily involves because social science attracts persons whose interests are in shaping the future.” Sounds like a equally apt hypothesis about opinion journalism.

Ellen Lent, Olney