On his June 28 radio show, nationally syndicated Clear Channel radio host Glenn Beck stated that "same-sex marriages in Massachusetts really have kind of fallen off ... now they marry in Massachusetts about nine people a month." Beck wondered aloud if this was because gay people "don't wanna get married" or "because there wasn't this pent up demand" or "because the population is not ten percent gay."
In fact, as USA Today reported on June 16, an estimated 1,700 same-sex couples applied for marriage licenses in Massachusetts on May 17, 2004 (the first day it was legal to do so). USA Today also reported that "the number of couples seeking licenses has dropped significantly in the past month" -- but not nearly to the extent that Beck claimed.
As an example of the drop-off, USA Today quoted Northampton city clerk Wendy Mazza, whose office had issued 113 licenses on May 17 and a total of 196 licenses as of June 15: "We average nine or 10 a week now." That's an average of between 36 couples and 40 couples per month, in Northampton, Massachusetts (population: 28,979) alone, not, as Beck claimed, "about nine people per month in Massachusetts" (population: 6,427,801).
USA Today went on to note that "Provincetown, a longtime vacation destination for gay couples, received 172 marriage applications the first day. By Thursday [June 10], the number reached 402, compared with 30 licenses issued all last year to heterosexual couples."
From the June 28 edition of The Glenn Beck Program:
BECK: I found an interesting article, this is a couple of weeks ago, I left it on my desk I gotta throw it away here, I just wanna,-- same-sex marriages in Massachusetts really have kind of fallen off, and you gotta ask yourself, "How come?" The same thing happened in Canada -- there was this big rush to get same-sex marriages in Canada, they're practically not even issuing marriage licenses anymore, and you'd have to ask, "Why?" Now they're finding this in Massachusetts, remember it was a huge, there was a pent up, everybody's like, "We've gotta get married, we have to be able to get..." and people were lined up on the streets, they were lined up everywhere, now they marry in Massachusetts about nine people a month.
What's up with that? How come there's not more? Is that possibly because the pent up demand to be married -- I mean I know gay people and the gay people I know say the same thing, "I don't wanna get married." Is it because there wasn't this pent up demand? Is it because the population is not ten percent gay? What is the, what's the reason behind that? Interesting side note, kind of a rhetorical question I thought I'd throw out.