This post is a mini-rant based not on political or religious leanings but, instead, on humanist logic. Everyone has a different meaning to attach to the phrase "family values," based on his or her own experiences. Thus, it is, more or less, a meaningless term. No one is going to sway me to believe a certain ideology based on the term.
Here is something that has long bothered me: People throwing the term "family values" around as an argument against same-sex marriage. I am not gay, but I believe that everyone should have the opportunity to pledge an official commitment to another person. And that's what marriage is about: Commitment.
What desecrates the sanctity of marriage is not same-sex marriage; what desecrates the sanctity of marriage is divorce. Don't get me wrong--there are definitely some legitimate reasons for divorce: abuse, for one. But I believe that the reason most people get divorced is because they should not have gotten married in the first place.
To be sure, my own childhood and upbringing were ideal in many ways, and this has certainly influenced my opinion. My parents are still married (46 years so far...), and they provided a loving, secure, and stable life for my siblings and me. It is that loving, secure, stable environment that I would want my future family to have, too. While it is certainly true that my views are shaped by my experience, I believe that same-sex couples can offer that same loving, secure, and stable environment to their families. Again, it comes down to commitment. If commitment is being honored, then marriage's virtue is safe.
Assuming I get married some day, I intend it to be for life. That is what that...that...(that horrible phrase)...means to me.