Marriage in America in 2010 (Photo credit: GEEKSTATS)
Jennifer Roback Morse of The Ruth Institute has put together a list of 77 non-religious reasons to support man/woman marriage. While 77 reasons may be a bit of overkill on the subject of traditional marriage, these reasons do indicate that there is a good case to be made for keeping marriage traditional.
Dr. Morse has a host of articles on the Ruth Institute website which demonstrate the wisdom of traditional marriage. No other structure compares with traditional marriage for protecting and fostering human growth. As I have noted before, traditional marriage is nothing less than a reflection of the reality of human existence.
Some of Dr. Morse’s reasons are offered on the basis of biology, while others are given on the basis of sexuality and benefits to the children. A few of the more interesting arguments are given below:
2 “Man/woman marriage allows children to know and be known by their biological parents. Same sex marriage separates children from at least one parent.”
17 “Same-sex marriage changes marriage from a child-centered institution to an adult-centered institution.”
29 “Same sex marriage makes an implicit statement that mothers and fathers are interchangeable, and that sex is irrelevant to parenting. The burden of proof should be on those who make this strong, non-intuitive claim.”
30 “Even same sex couples believe sex is relevant: the sex of their partners. A gay man insists on a male sex partner. He is not satisfied with a female sex partner, no matter how masculine she may be. A lesbian insists on a female sex partner. Even a very feminine man will not do.”
And, finally, one which mirrors the argument I have made here before,
70 “Same sex marriage is a creation of the state. Man/woman marriage is an organic institution arising spontaneously from society.”
If that last one seems unimportant, read my post. It is the difference between freedom and tyranny. (Feel free to offer your own responses).
Here is the story of a wedding (sort of). One wonders why this particular chapel on the beach was chosen for the union. Maybe it was the beautiful sunset. Maybe it was the sandy beach. Maybe it was the waves. Or… maybe it was the fact that a Christian ministry owned the seaside chapel. Maybe a lesbian couple choosing a Christian ministry owned facility would make the headlines. And, what do you know, it did! Now, the Christian ministry has been found in violation of the New Jersey laws against discrimination for refusing to allow a lesbian civil union at their beachfront chapel.
This case illustrates again the distinction being made in our culture between “fairness” and “justice.” The two concepts are radically different. In this instance, justice might say that those who own property have the rights to use or improve it according to their desires. They own it; they are free to use it. Fairness, on the other hand, says, “No, no, no… if one person gets to enjoy it, then everyone gets to enjoy it equally.”
This latter concept—fairness—is completely implausible. No one can abide by it. So, for example, no one in the name of fairness says that a mother must be allowed to marry her son (or daughter) in the seaside chapel—even if she wants to or even if the two are consenting adults who love each other. Likewise, no one in the name of fairness is arguing that I should be allowed to marry three wives at the seaside chapel. But, why not? If fairness is the rule, and if fairness means everyone must be treated equally, and if fairness means that each person should equally get that which he lusts after, then why (or how) can we exclude anyone from anything without being unfair?
So, in last week’s conversation, we ran into a possible impasse concerning tolerance. The issue surrounded Rick Warren and his invitation to pray at Obama’s Inauguration. Yesterday, the AP ran this story, which demonstrates precisely what I was saying in last week’s posts (and comments). Rick Warren is actually viewed as a model for tolerance, even though he is against gay marriage. For some, these categories are inherently contradictory. But that contradiction does not spring from any reasonable foundation; it springs from a predetermined notion about the definition of tolerance, namely, that it must include the approval of gay relationships.
Thus, this story illustrates, once again, the point I have been making. Tolerance is an unworkable idea because it does not depend either on reason or revelation; it is grounded in preference only. Tolerance can be imposed, but it cannot be just. It is merely a political power play which confuses more than it helps.
So, in the blog yesterday, I was asked for my definition of tolerance. Here it is. Tolerance is a warmed up crock of cow dung, in my opinion. It stinks and provides nothing that satisfies. It is a specious, anti-Christian attempt to redefine issues of truth and justice under the auspices of political power, which is to say, that tolerance is a tool which is used by those whose desire is to coerce moral strictures on others without having to defend their moral views against the traditional safeguards of reason or revelation or even majority opinion.
Tolerance is an inherently contradictory concept, as was pointed out yesterday in the blog post and revealed in the comments which followed. No one is able to tolerate everyone or everything. It is impossible. Thus, tolerance becomes an aristocratic imposition of the personal preferences of those in power upon those who are not. It becomes a matter of arbitrary imposition which does not answer to the higher authority of reason. It is more akin to the manner in which 3rd world dictatorships impose morality than it is related to the historical, Judeo-Christian models of morality which prevailed in the West for the past 5 centuries.
Here is another of many examples of how hopelessly contradictory the concept of tolerance is in America. Folks want to kill Mormons and burn down their temples because of how intolerant the Mormons are!
Everybody’s supposed to be tolerant nowadays. That is code language, of course, for giving full approval to homosexuality. When it comes to gays and lesbians, tolerance takes a different turn, as this episode so colorfully illustrates. Obama has angered gays and lesbians by inviting Rick Warren to offer a prayer at the inauguration.
All the man is going to do is offer a prayer for the new president. Yet, in response to this, it seems many gays and lesbians are outraged, feeling betrayed. Now, how tolerant is that?
Of course, it is perfectly understandable to be prejudiced against a Christian pastor. After all, those guys are so intolerant…