Michael Gerson: A generational shift in cultural attitudes

Michael Gerson

Published: Sunday, May 13 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

And the generational shift will inevitably influence the fights conservatives choose to make. Even a significant portion of millennials who regard homosexuality as immoral support gay marriage out of a commitment to pluralism. And arguments in favor of pluralism have a tremendous advantage in America. In much of the country, social conservatives may need to choose a more defensible political line — the protection of individual and institutional conscience rights for those who disagree with gay marriage. It is also a commitment of genuine pluralism to allow those with differing moral beliefs to associate in institutions that reflect their convictions.

The immediate political influence of cultural debates is overestimated. But the impact of a generational shift in cultural attitudes is only beginning.

Michael Gerson's email address is michaelgerson@washpost.com.

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