To all those people emailing me to complain that the political Magic cards post was “too biased for the Democrats,” my response is thus:
(image via Weasel King)
But should we federally endorse said unions with a term that for many is inequitable with the usage? That’s a much trickier question.
No, it isn’t (outside of a strategic context). In a moral sense, calling it anything but marriage is enforcing a separate-but-equal doctrine, which may be easier to implement but on a moral level is profoundly insulting. (“Gays can’t get married. That’s for straight people. Gays can get civilly unioned.”) Given the level of disassociation and ostricization that many gay people have to accept simply to live their lives and how that alienation in turn affects their mental health, endorsing it with the language of the state is simply mendacious.
MGK articulated the point better than I can, but I think it says quite a lot about what you are trying to say that you use the phrase “people of faith”, which gives the illusion of both a). including a large variety of religious views – and having lived in both a ‘red’ and a ‘blue’ state, i can attest that the only variety is shades of christian , b). the intolerant and backwards thinking beliefs that they (I refer to the homophobes) have is the result of a legitimate cognitive process.
It is clearly neither. I am not an expert on comparative religion, but to my limited understanding many, if not most, non-abrahamaic religions do NOT have unquestionable divine edicts in regard to who a person is *allowed* to love. So if the people of america truly were a varied and open-to-dialogue “people of faith” – and not what they are, a homogenous and *largely* intolerant (i cite the aforementioned 55% anti-gay marriage poll).
As for the second and more insidious implication; There is simply NO ethical basis for denying a person legal (and that is what is at stake here, not avoiding the endless after death torture of a kind and loving yahweh) benefits on the basis of their sexual orientation. None. This is not a simplification of a complex and nuanced moral issue, this is a removal of the smokescreen that the “people of faith” (read: christians) throw up in discussion whenever it becomes obvious that they lack a leg to stand on.
As for the ‘holiness’ of marriage; clearly when a union (aren’t there words to the approximate tune of ‘god has made one’ in the vows?) fails AT ALL, much less so much of the time, we are not talking about something holy. When a sizable percentage of women are abused by their husbands (apparently yahweh doesn’t care when you break a promise to him when it involves hurting women), we are not talking about something holy. But I guess the fact that the work of an ‘omnipotent’ being is routinely undone by mortals doesn’t seem to bother “people of faith”.
“…that’s all that keeps Jesus Christ from being a swear word when some people say it. ”
Silly me, I thought that opposing thinly-veiled intolerance was more important than jesus’s self-esteem. I completely retract my point.
If only Christian’s knew that the concept of marriage was around a lot longer before the idea of Christianity was developed and institutionalized.
Also, Rob Brown, thank you. You are the kind of liberal I like and can happily agree to disagree with.
Thank you. ^_^
I also got something wrong in my reply to your comment: Peter didn’t knock Flash out cold, he knocked him out of the ring.
I was going to point out that marriage isn’t an exclusively Christian ritual before I saw that Gauldar already said so.
If marriage had been invented by Christians, then it would make sense for them to say “Excuse us, could you stop calling your union ‘marriage’ please? ‘Marriage’ is our thing.” Since it wasn’t invented by Christians, however, it appears to make little sense for Christians to have the final say on what marriage is and what it isn’t.
Civil unions would be better than nothing, of course. But marriage would be better than civil unions.
The only *possible* point in favor of her NOT being a bigot is that she complied -while verbally noting that it was against her will- with a ruling by Alaska’s Supreme Court to offer benefits (http://dwb.adn.com/front/story/8508726p-8401181c.html). I think that it would’ve been a crime if she hadn’t complied with a Supreme Court ruling (i am by no means certain) so the fact that she ‘made’ a hobson’s choice isn’t exactly something worthy of applause.
Yeah, that’s what the person I told you about thinks. Here’s a direct quote from his blog:
“…And Palin has done more for same-sex couples as the Governor of ALASKA than Obama had as someone representing CHICAGO. The gay epicenter of the Midwest. Heck, he wouldn’t even march in our Gay Pride parade this year.”
He goes on to say that HILLARY marched in parades, which apparently makes all the difference. And oh yeah, he reminds that Palin has gay friends. *shakes head*
Anyway, thanks for those links.
I don’t get why people of faith would need the government’s endorsement to feel secure in the sanctity of their marriages. Isn’t the whole point of faith that it comes from within? That it’s between you and your God, and possibly a church of some type? How does the state act as an intermediary there? Whatever happened to “Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s”? If a government-approved marriage equates a sacred marriage, then why not get married at the registrar’s office and skip the service? It’d cost a lot less. Ironically, various Christian clergymen have been officiating gay unions since the 80s.
Exar, the problem with that argument is that until it became legally untenable, Palin opposed precisely those “legal rights associated with marriage” that you cite. She was against extending benefits to domestic partnerships, not against gay marriage itself.
I personally think MGK’s argument is correct. It’s also worth noting that offering “civil unions” as a substitute creates a sub-marriage structure that I doubt could legally be denied straight couples, thus genuinely weakening the legal position of marriage in a way that simply extending marriage to gay couples doesn’t.
Standing in the middle of the US Republicans and Democrats is not being a “moderate”, it’s being a right-wing nut. United States has two right-wing parties, one of them slightly less crazy than the other.
Oh, and to jump from that subject to another one entirely, the thing with gay marriage is that marriage isn’t merely a sentimental thing. A married couple is, from the society’s perspective, an abstract unit that produces new citizens, a baby machine if you will. Until gays get artificial semination/womb-renting rights, ie. the ability to legally produce new citizens, they’re never going to be _really_ married as far as the society’s structure is considered, and if they’re not, calling them “married” just causes confusion. Things should be called by their right name.
So my wife and I aren’t married because we’re not pumping out kiddies? Elderly couples can’t get married?
“A married couple is, from the society’s perspective, an abstract unit that produces new citizens, a baby machine if you will.”
Rob got here first, but WHAT? HUH? NO! WHAT?
“Until gays get artificial semination/womb-renting rights, ie. the ability to legally produce new citizens, they’re never going to be _really_ married as far as the society’s structure is considered”
Hold on, WHAT? Where are you living that gays have no artificial insemination rights? Gattaca?
A married couple is, from the society’s perspective, an abstract unit that produces new citizens, a baby machine if you will.
I don’t think you live in the same society the rest of us do. See, in my society, there are laws allowing certain couples to marry only on the condition that they are incapable of having children. Arizona & Illinois (and I believe others, but haven’t looked up their laws) allow first cousins to marry only if they are too old to have children or at least one of them is otherwise incapable of having kids.
Besides which, gay couples already have children. Preventing them from marrying is not going to stop them from having kids, either.
“Oh, and to jump from that subject to another one entirely, the thing with gay marriage is that marriage isn’t merely a sentimental thing.”
Right, it’s an agreement that two people enter into that has substantial legal benefits. Denying such benefits on the basis of sexual orientation is bigotry. And I don’t think “sentimental” means what you think it means.
“A married couple is, from the society’s perspective, an abstract unit that produces new citizens”
1) “society” doesn’t have a perspective, the majority of people do, there’s a difference. the word society in that sentence has implications that don’t square with reality.
2)putting the word abstract in your argument doesn’t add to the validity of what you are saying. putting it next to the word “unit” dramatically takes away from it
“, a baby machine if you will. Until gays get artificial semination/womb-renting rights, ie. the ability to legally produce new citizens, they’re never going to be _really_ married as far as the society’s structure is considered…”
Really? “society’s structure”? Is there any word you won’t give a “perspective”? Way to cloud the argument.
“Things should be called by their right name.”
Things should. Like bigotry for totally-random example.
“Right, [marriage]’s an agreement that two people enter into that has substantial legal benefits. Denying such benefits on the basis of sexual orientation is bigotry.”
Yes. Denying them on the basis that there’s no basis for them, on the other hand, is just rational. People simply liking each other very much, living together and having sex together should not be cause for any kind of benefits. Those things are incidental and have no value to the society.
The bottom line of the matter is that a family only has value to the society as a child-rearing unit. The fact that some families fail to fulfill that purpose is no reason to do things that would lead to even more families failing to fulfill that purpose. Until a gay couple can function as a child-rearing unit, it shouldn’t be given the benefits that belong to a child-rearing unit.
I should clarify that when I say society, I don’t mean any of the people that live in it, I mean the nation itself as an entirely abstract power structure of who has what rights and what duties, interacts with whom in what way and so on. All changes in the laws of the society must be of such nature that they optimize that structure, as that will make things work smoothly in it.
Come to think of it, it would be good to deny marriage benefits even to heterosexual couples until the birth of their first child (or at least until the fetus has grown past the abortion limit), to drive home the point.
This usage of the word “society” that you have an alarming tendency for does not appear to have any correspondence towards how people actually use it (i.e., the definition). It occurs throughout, so I mention it before addressing the specifics.
“Yes. Denying them on the basis that there’s no basis for them, on the other hand, is just rational.”
That sentence. Restated: ‘I agree that it’s bigotry to deny people LEGAL benefits on the basis of sexual orientation, but it’s just rational to deny people LEGAL benefits if they do not reproduce.’
Of course there’s also the fact that your comment creates an infinite regression when examined;
basis = there is no basis
basis = there is no (there is no (there is no (there is no(…))))
That is an untenable and borderline malevolent idea. You have just moved the bigotry from being directed towards homosexuals to being directed towards homosexuals AND heterosexuals who lack the ability to reproduce AND heterosexuals that lack the desire to reproduce.
“People simply liking each other very much, living together and having sex together should not be cause for any kind of benefits. Those things are incidental and have no value to the society.”
“simply liking”? You really just said that and attempted to pass it off as part of an informed discussion? In your head that made have sounded impressively detached and focused on the bigger picture, but in actuality it doesn’t really convey anything other than an offhand and childish rejection of one of the most powerful manifestations of the qualities that compose a decent human being.
As should not be surprising, you are visibly unaware of the well known fact that there is a documented link between physical health and strong relationships. Perhaps in your nightmarishly orwellian ideal of “society”, the physical health of people is also “incidental. That aside, what you say is a disgusting trivialization of love, in ANY form.
“Come to think of it, it would be good to deny marriage benefits even to heterosexual couples until the birth of their first child (or at least until the fetus has grown past the abortion limit), to drive home the point.”
The point being what exactly? That the fear of “society’s” increasing indifference towards the individual has been realized worse than we would have thought possible?
“I should clarify that when I say society, I don’t mean any of the people that live in it, I mean the nation itself as an entirely abstract power structure of who has what rights and what duties, interacts with whom in what way and so on. All changes in the laws of the society must be of such nature that they optimize that structure, as that will make things work smoothly in it.”
Seriously, stop saying abstract, it’s a contradiction (you are using the word as an adjective, none of the definitions apply to something as specific as what you are referring to. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/abstract) and meaningless and only gives the appearance that you are trying to pad your comments with a word that you think will be vague enough to add legitimacy to a ridiculous idea.
What you propose is disgusting. I’m surprised that anyone who reads this blog would advocate an idea that reeks of social darwinism and sounds so ominously like the prelude to a government enforced mandatory eugenics program. A society (i use the word in this case, correctly, as you seem to lack the ability to do so and need a demonstration) that enforces a view such as the one you advocate cannot be argued for and should never be sought.
Also, even if one were to accept the crypto-fascist premises Acabaca is apparently starting from, it’s unclear why encouraging people to bear more children is in “Society”‘s interests anyway.
I notice that acabaca is still not recognizing the fact that gay couples do have children, so even with the stupid imposition that only couples with children can marry, forbidding gay marriage still makes no sense.
seriously, you guys, the newest Why I Should Write the Legion post is great…
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