Just because things can be put on the same list doesn’t mean they are necessarily similar.
The government has an obligation to protect the life and liberty of the subset of human beings we call “Americans.”
Well, I consider a fetus a human being. And I don’t like it when governments start getting clever about who counts as full human beings and who doesn’t (See: slavery, U.S.; or Holocaust, Nazi). There are few areas where a bright line is more vital or necessary.
But once you’re born, and — hopefully — properly raised, the government’s chief obligation is to stay out of your way — whether you’re straight or gay — so you can pursue happiness as you define it — not how, say, Michael Bloomberg or Pat Robertson define it.
Which brings me back to gay marriage. Opponents of same-sex marriage insist gays have the same right to marry a person of the opposite sex as anyone else. It’s a clever line, but it overlooks the fact that romantic love has been the paramount reason for marriage for quite some time. Telling people they’re free to be unhappy isn’t all that persuasive.