What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close

Should Gay Marriage Be The Number One Issue?

August 27, 2009, 2:38 PM
User_rhfk_2df32c616

Sometimes peoples' views surprise you. When I heard Tim McCarthy, director of Harvard's Human Rights and Social Movement program, talk about gay marriage in his Big Think interview, I was interested to find his perspective a bit counterintuitive. You'd think- he's a historian who's passionate about human (and gay) rights, so he's probably fuming that same sex marriage still isn't legal in so many states. But for McCarthy, the issue is more complicated than that.

Tim McCarthy doesn't think gay marriage should be number one on the agenda right now. Strategically, it's just not the most important issue for the broadest range of LGBT people. He says: "For a lot of folks, employment nondiscrimination is more important than marriage. For a lot of folks, adoption rights are more important than marriage. For a lot of folks, universal health care is more important than marriage."

McCarthy also speaks passionately about how President Obama has yet to use any political capital on the gay community. "He got Congress to move on climate change last week. He could get Congress to move on Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

You should also check out what he has to say about social networking's role in mobilizing a political movement. On one hand, it's one of the reasons Obama made it to office. On the other, it robs us of that physical space that's so crucial when coming together for a common cause. To McCarthy, a few traditions still reign supreme: holding hands, singing songs, congregating in that basement of a church.

 

Should Gay Marriage Be The ...

Newsletter: Share: