Despite a hostile audience and aggressively contemptuous host (CNN's Piers Morgan), the Heritage Foundation's Ryan Anderson delivered a compelling, composed, respectful and reasoned defense of traditional marriage.
On the March 26 program, Anderson, a Heritage fellow, is subjected to brow-beatings, name-calling, and Pavlovian crowd shout-downs - yet, he takes the high road and refuses to respond in-kind. Instead, he remains calm, civil, unprovoked, and eloquent.
Morgan uses homosexual Suze Orman as a prop, trying to portray her as a sympathetic victim of Anderson and those who agree with him that marriage is, and is only, a union of a man and a woman. Morgan argues that, if prisoners and Anderson can marry, Orman should have the same "right" to marriage her female partner.
Orman even encourages the stacked-deck audience to vote on who's right. But, after the audience's perfunctory outcry in support of gay marriage, Anderson calmly points out that there are plenty of people outside the studio "mob" who agree with him.
Anderson notes that the "citizens in 41 states have defined marriage as a union of a man and a woman, and the federal government has done that in the Defense of Marriage Act."
Orman, for her part, says she has compassion for Anderson because he's so "very, very uneducated."
She also tries to make the case that she's the victim of "economic" discrimination if she can't "marry" her partner.
Anderson responds that that tax law, not marriage, should be changed: "I think we can craft public policy that treats all Americans fairly without redefining marriage." But, Orman argues that creating gay marriage would be far easier than changing tax law.
Morgan - a British citizen - even has the gall to close the segment by preaching to Anderson that his "offensive" views are un-American: It's not fair, it's not tolerant, and it's not American."
But, while Morgan may have had the last word, Anderson's words have lasting wisdom.