I want equal marriage. Heck I even want it bad. But I have come to believe that having watched the referendums in Washington (civil union) and Maine (marriage) that this just isn't the time to fight for marriage, no matter how "back of the bus" it is.
I grew up Catholic but haven't called myself one in decades. But I still remember the sacraments. I don't know whether this is something practiced in other Christian faiths but to a Catholic, the sacraments are pretty much what keeps you out of hell. Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and... Marriage. As long as we're fighting for that word the Church is going to fight tooth and nail to stop us. This is the same Catholic church that just opened its doors to Anglicans to come back to Father Church to get away from those icky homosexual lovers.
They aren't going to back down (and I know we won't either) so it may be easier and more successful to pursue civil unions as an interim step towards getting marriage equality. Looking at Maine and Washington and especially the predominately Catholic Franco-Americans that 2hughmaine spoke of it paints a picture of the Catholic Church stepping in to the fight in a big way when it's "marriage" on the line. I think we should shoot for civil unions as a means to actually get some wins under our belt and let folks get used to the gay couples in their neighborhood and at work before we go for the gold ring and marriage. Otherwise, we're going to have to fight one of the oldest, largest, and best funded organizations in the world every single step of the way.