Thursday, April 4, 2013

Gay marriage, honestly



Ross Douthat on the gay marriage steamroller:
The conservative argument still has serious exponents, but it’s now chuckled at in courtrooms, dismissed by intellectuals, mocked in the media and (in a sudden, recent rush) abandoned by politicians. Indeed, it has been abandoned by Frum himself, who is now energetically urging Republicans to embrace the redefinition of marriage he once warned against.  
Yet for an argument that has persuaded so few, the conservative view has actually had decent predictive power. As the cause of gay marriage has pressed forward, the social link between marriage and childbearing has indeed weakened faster than before. As thepublic’s shift on the issue has accelerated, so has marriage’s overall decline
Since Frum warned that gay marriage could advance only at traditional wedlock’s expense, the marriage rate has been falling faster, the out-of-wedlock birthrate has been rising faster, and the substitution of cohabitation for marriage has markedly increased. Underlying these trends is a steady shift in values: Americans are less likely to see children as important to marriage and less likely to see marriage as important to childbearing (the generation gap on gay marriage shows up on unwed parenting as well) than even in the very recent past. 
Correlations do not, of course, establish causation. The economy is obviously playing a leading role in the retreat from marriage — the shocks of recession, the stagnation of wages, the bleak prospects of blue-collar men. Culturally, what matters most is the emergence of what the National Marriage Project calls a “capstone” understanding of marriage, which treats wedlock less as a foundation for adulthood and more as a celebration of adult achievement — and which seems to work out far better for our disciplined upper class than for society as a whole
But there is also a certain willed naïveté to the idea that the advance of gay marriage is unrelated to any other marital trend. For 10 years, America’s only major public debate about marriage and family has featured one side — judges and journalists, celebrities and now finally politicians — pressing the case that modern marriage has nothing to do with the way human beings reproduce themselves, that the procreative understanding of the institution was founded entirely on prejudice, and that the shift away from a male-female marital ideal is analogous to the end of segregation. 
Now that this argument seems on its way to victory, is it really plausible that it has changed how Americans view gay relationships while leaving all other ideas about matrimony untouched? 
You can tell this naïveté is willed because it’s selective. There are plenty of interesting arguments, often from gay writers, about how the march to gay marriage might be influencing heterosexual norms — from Alex Ross’s recent musings in The New Yorker on the sudden “queer vibe” in straight pop culture to Dan Savage’s famous argument that straights might do well to imitate the “monogamish” norms of some gay male couples. It’s only the claim that this influence might not always be positive that is dismissed as bigotry and unreason. 
A more honest, less triumphalist case for gay marriage would be willing to concede that, yes, there might be some social costs to redefining marriage. It would simply argue that those costs are too diffuse and hard to quantify to outweigh the immediate benefits of recognizing gay couples’ love and commitment. 
Such honesty would make social liberals more magnanimous in what looks increasingly like victory, and less likely to hound and harass religious institutions that still want to elevate and defend the older marital ideal.

Douthat understands much, but he finally misses. None of the gay marriage triumphalism, pace Douthat, is "less triumphant", let alone honest. The gay marriage movement is not about marriage, gay or otherwise. Few gays will marry. Few care.

Gay marriage is a repudiation of Christian natural law, although ironically the gay marriage movement steals the words of natural law. "Marriage equality" is natural law rhetoric, twisted and bastardized to destroy the bulwark of the Christian natural law understanding of man-- the complementarity of man and woman, the reflection of the Trinity in the family, the command to be fruitful and multiply.

But to describe gay marriage as primarily an attack on Christian culture is to misconstrue its motives. Gay marriage is an attack not on culture but on Christians. A focused attack. 

Legalization of gay marriage will mean criminalization of opposition to gay marriage. If you are a teacher or an establishment owner or a wedding photographer or a printer or a pastor you will be required to toe the gay marriage line. Comply, with a smile, or else you will be sued or fired or prosecuted. Christians will be forced to choose.

The contraception mandate is just a warm-up. Christians who refuse to teach or endorse or serve gay marriage will be driven from the public square.

Gay marriage proponents are probably right that gay marriage will have little direct impact on heterosexual marriage. Heterosexuals have been successfully decimating marriage for several generations, and gays will merely grease the rails of the plunging train. But the real damage to marriage has been done by heterosexuals.

What gay marriage will decimate is the freedom of Christians to live by their faith.

It is already happening. With the codification of gay marriage, the repression will ignite, like Coliseum torches. 

49 comments:

  1. Homosexuals are among the least tolerant people I've ever met.

    http://news.yahoo.com/students-try-banish-catholic-chaplain-campus-anti-gay-122022298.html

    What we are witnessing is the criminalization of Christianity. It's all right if you're a Christian as long as you don't actually believe that crap.

    Ahh, diversity! Room for everybody, just not for me.

    The Torch

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    Replies
    1. They don't want tolerance. They want dominance.

      Ben

      Delete
  2. The contraception mandate is just a warm-up. Christians who refuse to teach or endorse or serve gay marriage will be driven from the public square.

    Of course. They must first establish that first amendment protections are essentially worthless. When the government says jump, you say 'how high?' Once they've established that, they'll push it to its maximum extent.

    The right to free exercise of religion is, in their minds, a mistake. They ignore it while paying it lipservice, much like the right to keep and bear arms. The only constitutional rights they value are the made up ones: the right to abortion, the right to birth control, the right to sodomy. They'll fight to the death for those.

    Ben

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  3. “What gay marriage will decimate is the freedom of Christians to live by their faith.”

    And what of the religion and faith of those gays that want to marry? The gay couples who want to marry in their liberal churches are also Christians, and must have the same freedom to live per their faith as you do.

    On every major social issue (with the exception of conservatives desire to own high power killing machines), conservative Christians fight to limit the freedom of individuals. The only freedom they truly care about is the freedom of Christians to discriminate.

    Once again it is the liberal progressive position to expand freedom and liberty.

    -KW

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    Replies
    1. If conservative Christians thought they could get away with it, as they did in the past, they'd follow the advice of Aquinas (the "Angelic Doctor") and murder all non-Christians.

      Delete
    2. KW:

      And what of the religion and faith of those gays that want to marry? The gay couples who want to marry in their liberal churches are also Christians, and must have the same freedom to live per their faith as you do.

      Well no, they aren't Christians, but that's besides the point. Homosexuals can marry in any church that will let them, in any state. The church will recognize the marriage, that's not the question. So their freedom to follow their own religion is not in jeopardy and never has been. What they want is state recognition because it carries certain benefits, but most of all because the state can force others to recognize their faux marriages. What they want is to outlaw dissent and to push their agenda.

      Conservatives do not limit actual constitutional rights. That's you. That one about "high powered killing machines" is actually in the Constitution, unlike all of the fabricated "rights" that your side has invented and demands that we all venerate.

      Troy: I've never read Aquinas and I don't take anything you say at face value, but let me ask you a question. Why don't we just murder unbelievers outright? We're the dominant majority, aren't we? It's real scary here in America, where Christian crazies run everything and oppress everyone. You believe that nonsense don't you?

      Ben

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    3. I'm glad we have KW on record saying that we have a right to live per our faith. Does he really believe that? I doubt it.

      Ben

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    4. Forcing religious employers to provide contraception is not an expansion of freedom or liberty. Employees have all the freedom and liberty they want to go buy it on their own.

      --Francisca S.

      Delete
    5. If my employer doesn't purchase me a Smith & Wesson M&P.357, he is trampling my second amendment rights. Freedom and liberty dictate that he must purchase it for me. I can't afford it, so it's on my employer to shell out the cash. If he doesn't like it, that's fine, but he still has to do it, otherwise he is forcing his morals on me.

      I've got one picked out right here.

      http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product4_750001_750051_766225_-1_757956_757781_757781_ProductDisplayErrorView_Y

      Joey

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    6. I see you like those high-powered killing machines, Joey. That's a nice one.

      Ben

      Delete
    7. Why don't we just murder unbelievers outright? We're the dominant majority, aren't we? It's real scary here in America, where Christian crazies run everything and oppress everyone. You believe that nonsense don't you?

      No, I don't believe that. I spent enough time in the US to know better. As a matter of fact, I spent a few months at UT Austin - I know, a liberal island in a sea of conservatism - and I had a great time.

      It's a good thing that your Founding Fathers weren't conservative Christians or the US would be a hell hole.

      Delete
    8. Forcing religious employers to provide contraception is not an expansion of freedom or liberty. Employees have all the freedom and liberty they want to go buy it on their own.

      And because health benefits are compensation to the employee, the employees will be doing so even if the contraception mandate is upheld. The only thing the mandate does is prevent religious employers from dictating what choices their employees can make with their compensation.

      Delete
    9. "The only thing the mandate does is prevent religious employers from dictating what choices their employees can make with their compensation."

      No, it doesn't. It forces the employer to provide something he does not want to. The first amendment protects citizens from their government, not their employers. Because employers are also citizens, they are also protected from the government.

      Employees can go buy birth control pills 'til the cows come home.

      And it's more a health benefit than cosmetic surgery.

      Troy, you don't know much about the Founding Fathers, I see.

      --Francisca S.

      Delete
    10. Troy, you don't know much about the Founding Fathers, I see.

      Really? So when I said they weren't conservative Christians, I was wrong?

      Delete
    11. Yes.

      --Francisca S.

      Delete
    12. planned parenthood is a high-powered killing machine. i think kw likes planned parenthood.

      naidoo

      Delete
  4. Gay marriage, gay divorce, gay this, gay that.
    Equality? Bullshit.
    Anyone can get married, nobody is stopping them. The problem is that they want to do something else entirely and call it marriage.

    This is all about the same divisive nonsense we have seen coming from the so called 'centre' for a generation now.
    They can redefine words like marriage in legalese all they want. All it does is increase a growing disrespect for the law and contempt for government rule (by fiat).
    They feed the fire with every move.

    Let the hedonists and technocrats gloat. Let them call themselves 'liberal' and 'progressive'. We all know what they really are.

    They are doomed to failure in the long run. That failure will be of their own devices.
    The faith will be alive and well long after the empires and nations of today are a distant memory.

    ReplyDelete
  5. No argument in favor of same-sex marriage couldn't also be extended to polygamy or group marriage. There's no rational reason to limit the number of parties to just two.

    --Francisca S.

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    Replies
    1. Thin end of the wedge, Francisca.

      Delete
    2. Of course. If it's all above love, who's to say that a person can love two or more people simultaneously? Love is love.

      I think most people on the Left will never go for it as long as they associate polygamy with weird religious groups that they despise. That's why they're against it. If it were some cool, swingin' Hollywood movie mogul who wanted to marry two bisexual starletts, they'd have no problem with it. If it were a bisexual person who wanted a husband and a wife, they'd have no problem with it. If it were a woman with three of four wives, they'd say fine. It's only when one adds the element of religion that they decide the state must get involved in these people's "bedrooms."

      Joey

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    3. francisca, here's a rational reason: one is more than enough! but i get your point.

      naidoo

      Delete
  6. I should also add:
    The Supreme Court ruling in Canada re gay marriage exempts the Churches. The Churches are NOT forced to perform these heretical rituals, as religious rights are enshrined by our constitution. Nor do we have any laws banning alternate theories about evolution in our schools. ID and Creationism are also discussed openly.
    The gay union debate here was about benefits, and is still a major controversy.
    If a liberal Church wants to perform these ceremonies, it is legal. If a traditional Church wishes to abstain or preach against, it is legal.
    Is this also the case in the US?
    I ask this honestly.

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    Replies
    1. For the moment, though I don't see why. If they can force churches to buy abortifacent drugs, they can force them to perform marriages. Or they'll simply punish them through the tax code, or employ other forms of discrimination.

      There's no reason why churches, and only churches should enjoy the right to free exercise of religion. Citizens should be able to as well.

      --Francisca S.

      Delete
    2. what i've learned from the obama administration is that they can force anyone to do anything, constitutional protections be damned. all of us who don't think so are told that we our religious beliefs don't make us 'above the law'. apparently, 'above the law' means that we think the first amendment means something. last i checked, the first amendment is not only the law, but the highest law.

      naidoo

      Delete
  7. "But the real damage to marriage has been done by heterosexuals."

    I've heard that chestnut before. Heterosexuals haven't destroyed marriage, liberals have. Some of them may have been hetero, but it's their liberalism, not their sexual urges that compelled them to make marriage meaningless.

    Joey

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    Replies
    1. I don't think that liberals have higher divorce rates than conservatives. In fact, I seem to recall that it's the other way around. The point being: if conservatives have less respect for their own wedding vows than liberals do, how do you square that with your claim that liberals have destroyed marriage (assuming that marriage has been destroyed [it hasn't])?

      Delete
    2. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      "I don't think that liberals have higher divorce rates... I seem to recall that it's the other way around."

      Just to shed a bit of light on Troi's "thinking", (which I'll bet he picked up off the usual paranoid left-wing hate sites):

      Divorce rates tend to be higher in the South because marriage rates are also higher in the South. In contrast, in the Northeast, first marriages tend to be delayed and the marriage rates are lower, meaning there are also fewer divorces. Diana Elliott, US Census Bureau, Newsroom, 8/25/2011.

      As it happens, Ms Elliott was the demographer who authored the original report.

      As one can immediately see, Troi is doubly ignorant. Divorce rates are not higher among "conservatives", but in the South. And they are higher in the South because the marriage rate itself is higher.

      Now, simple ignorance is not necessarily a bad thing. However, it does become a bad thing when ignorant people go on to construct tinfoil-hat theories based on their ignorance and bigotry.

      It appears that our very own Troi al-Dhimmi has been caught out and exposed, yet again, as a fraud.

      Delete
    3. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      Just a quick follow-up on the Census data...

      If you look at Figure 8 of the full report, it's obvious that the most long-lasting marriages (age-adjusted) are those in the South (i.e., Troi's "conservatives") and the shortest are those in the "deep blue" northeast band of states. And Nevada, of course.

      Delete
    4. Nice try, Admiral Chicken Hawk.

      Nevertheless, conservative Christians are more likely to break their wedding vows than - gasp - atheists. Link.

      It's not that surprising, really. If you're willing to lie to yourself that a cosmic zombie died for your sins, the next lies are so much easier. Aren't they, chicken hawk?

      Delete
    5. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:20 PM

      1) What's the marriage rate, al-Dhimmi?
      2) Do you know what a chicken hawk is?

      Delete
    6. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:24 PM

      Ahhh, now I see where you got your little theory. And check out this little gem:

      21% of atheists have been divorced
      21% of Catholics and Lutherans have been divorced

      So when you say "conservative Christians", you obviously aren't referring to Catholics.

      Delete
    7. Perhaps you should explain why you call me al-Dhimmi.

      I know what a chicken hawk is. You are a typical example. All hat but no cattle.

      Delete
    8. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      How so? Because I concretized your very fears by buying a battleship and a dozen MOABs through the Gun Show Loophole? I guess you're afraid of everybody, huh?

      Delete
    9. So when you say "conservative Christians", you obviously aren't referring to Catholics

      When I say "humans" I am not just referring to males. Take it from there.

      Delete
    10. Please explain why I am a "dhimmi".

      Delete
    11. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:44 PM

      I'm not understanding your point. You say "conservative christians" have a higher divorce rate than athiests. This is based on your atheist agitprop site, but I'll take the data as presented.

      Clearly, according to your site, the rate for Catholics is identical to that of atheists. So when you say "conservative Christians" have higher divorce rates, you cannot possibly be referring to Catholics.

      Did you follow that, or do I need to use shorter words and simpler sentences?

      Delete
    12. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 3:46 PM

      "Please explain why I am a "dhimmi"."

      What does "hat...cattle" have to do with chicken hawk-hood?

      Delete
    13. Clearly, according to your site, the rate for Catholics is identical to that of atheists. So when you say "conservative Christians" have higher divorce rates, you cannot possibly be referring to Catholics.

      When I say that 50% of humans have a dick, would you answer that I could not possibly be referring to women?

      Delete
    14. But really, why am I a "dhimmi" and you are not?

      Delete
    15. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 4:02 PM

      Non-nuanced or nuanced?

      Non-nuanced: yes.

      Nuanced: No. Exactly 50%? Probably not. Drag queens? You make the call.

      But I'm glad we agree on one thing. Catholics are not among those you consider to be "conservative" Christians. And I agree with you. In fact, I prefer "orthodox".

      The language would probably be better off and people would probably be better understood if we looked at the Christian theological spectrum as running from orthodox to reform, as the Jews do. "Conservative", in my opinion at least, is better used as a political term.

      Delete
    16. Well then, you seem to have accepted at least that atheists are not more likely to get divorced than Catholics. That's progress. Whether or not you like to call Catholics "conservative". I agree that "orthodox" is a better term.

      But you still haven't explained why I am a "dhimmi".

      Delete
    17. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 4:17 PM

      Why do I believe you are a dhimmi, Troi?

      Well, I answered that yesterday and I don't feel like typing it all over again.

      But basically, I believe you are a dhimmi due to your obvious and virulent hatred of all things Catholic. Perhaps you can explain that, but really, Troi, paying attention to the Pope's shoes is a bit... well... unbalanced.

      The basis of my belief is the lack of vitriol for your Muslim neighbors. Catholics may discourage adulterous sex (gay or straight) as sinful, but Islamists kill adulterers. And Islamists reserve special death sentences for homosexuals.

      So I find it puzzling that you pour out your venom on the Catholic Church, but you never mention Islamism. Whatever the Catholic position on these matters, the Islamist position is far more extreme. And final. Frankly, I believe it is because you are afraid to do so. And if that is true, you are a dhimmi.

      If not, you're just a hateful hypocrite .

      So you see, I'm actually giving you the benefit of the doubt given those two choices.

      Is there a third explanation for your hateful attempts to wound and insult people you don't know?

      Delete
    18. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 4:26 PM

      No, I'm not "accepting" that atheists are no more likely to get divorced than Catholics. I don't know, frankly. But you're missing the point.

      The data shown are percent divorced within category.

      If 42% of atheists get married, and 21% of atheists are divorced, 1 out of 2 atheist marriages end in divorce.

      if 84% of Catholics get married, and 21% get divorced, then 1 out of 4 Catholic marriages end in divorce.

      I just made those marriage rates up, but the point is - or should be - clear. From the data you cited, you cannot say that atheists and Catholics are equally likely to break their wedding vows. In fact, I'll bet - but cannot prove - that Catholics are, in fact, less likely.

      Delete
    19. So I am a dhimmi because I don't like the pope's choice of shoes. Interesting.

      So I find it puzzling that you pour out your venom on the Catholic Church, but you never mention Islamism. Whatever the Catholic position on these matters, the Islamist position is far more extreme. And final. Frankly, I believe it is because you are afraid to do so. And if that is true, you are a dhimmi.

      I think I have mentioned on this blog before that Islamism is even more crazy than Catholicism. So you don't have a point at all.

      Delete
    20. Adm. G Boggs, Glenbeckistan NavyApril 4, 2013 at 6:57 PM

      You're a dhimmi because you're a coward.

      Delete
    21. When I said that liberals have destroyed marriage, I meant that they have pushed policies such as no fault divorce. They generally don't like the idea of marriage as permanent, so they have made many exceptions to the rule. It's gotten to the point that marriage is a permanent relationship, unless one party says he/she doesn't wanna no more. Then they can get a divorce. The problem with this situation is that marriage then becomes no more binding than two kids in junior high school "going steady."

      I think it's within liberals' nature to want out of agreements that they make, not to honor commitments. It's not just marriage but other things as well.

      I don't know about the divorce rates of liberals versus conservatives.

      Joey

      Delete
    22. Joey,

      The first 'no fault' divorce in America was legislated in California in 1969 and signed into law by that arch-liberal Ronald Reagan.

      Divorce was happening before then of course. In many cases, the grounds for the divorce were fabricated, with one party 'admitting' to nonexistent adultery.

      Delete
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