The California Supreme Court surprisingly voted yesterday to uphold the will of the people concerning the ban on gay marriage. Civil unrest is being displayed again with protesters on both sides in the street.
The primary argument I hear coming from the gay community and its sympathizers is that of equality. Since men and women are equal, they should all be entitled to liberty and justice for all, and that entails that they should be able to marry whomever they please. This article will critique that idea, demonstrate why it is destructive, and finally offer a traditional explanation of what equality is and what is really entailed by it.
Are All Marriages Equal?
If it really were the case that every marriage is equal since men and women are equal, then equality would also entail that any family members should be able to marry each other. Further, polygamous relationships must bow to equality. I think it is safe to say that the overwhelming majority of citizens in the U.S. would find it proper to legally bar people from these types of relationships. It would not make sense to simply name-call this majority a bunch of bigots. At this point, perhaps it would be better to go back and evaluate whether equality has been distorted to make it fit something it was never intended.
Equality does not mean there are no differences among things. Men and women are equal (the same) in terms of their human nature, but only the most radical and thick-headed would claim that their physical differences are merely superficial. John Gray’s Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus is just one of the many works that readily comes to mind concerning the vast differences between the sexes.
Not only are there inequalities among men and women, but there are also differences in various relationships. The relation that my chair has with my door bell is not as meaningful as the relation my kid has to her stuffed animal. Further, the relation I have to my kid is far superior to the relation she has to her stuffed animal. Finally, the marriage relation that men have with women is far superior to the relation same-sex couples may have.
The reason for this is the capabilities for good inherent to opposite-sex couples, which far outweigh the capabilities same-sex couples have. The former provide for a stable and well-nurtured society even with the capability of destruction (e.g., divorce). The former provides the basis for a virtuous society in at least a couple ways. First, there is something valuable about growing and learning to intimately live and work with someone as diverse as the opposite sex. Second, a relationship is more valuable when it gives to and nurtures others outside itself. That is particularly true in the case of raising our children. They are best suited as the recipients of love from a mother and a father. Even if opposite-sex couples do not actually have kids, they may have kids and those couples provide a model for the rest of the community.
Yet it is evident that same-sex couples also have kids and may model for the community what nurturing relationships look like. The problem here, though, is two-fold. First, this is a very small percentage of the gay community. Second, it overlooks the value that both male and female contribute to the relation, and to say there is no beneficial difference between them is just myopic.
Results of Equalizing Gay Marriage
When this opposite-sex marital relationship is minimized and treated as no more valuable than a same-sex relationship, then society will pay for its blindness. When marriage becomes whatever one wants all for the sake of equality, then society no longer recognizes any objective meaning to marriage. If there is no longer any objective meaning, then why bother advocating for marriage in general? As a result, people only enter into marriage if it becomes meaningful for them. Marriage becomes the best similar to the statement, "Chocolate ice cream is the best!" Under these conditions, one would expect marital rates to drop significantly while the equality of all forms of sexual expression continues to rise. The upshot is that out-of-wedlock births continue to rise, and the government now has to flip the bill to raise many of these kids. DeMint and Woodard make the case that "the most costly policies by government are those that punish, demean, and weaken the institution of marriage" (Why We Whisper: Restoring Our Right to Say It's Wrong, 127). They go on to say that the long-term costs of unwed births are "astronomical" and are "a primary cause of America's most serious and costly socioeconomic problems" (135).
This slide from gay marriage to an increase in out-of-wedlock births is exactly what has already taken place in certain European nations. Political commentator Frank Pastore wrote,
"Nine European nations have had same-sex marriage since the early 90s—and just 2 percent of same-sex couples in these countries ever bother to marry, while there has been a 46 percent increase in out-of-wedlock births. Same-sex couples simply do not marry in significant number when given the legal right to do so, while more heterosexual couples will not bother to get married before having children. In these nations, 70 percent of all births now take place outside of marriage, and among first-time mothers, 80 percent are unmarried. Same-sex marriage will result in fewer total marriages and more children born out of wedlock."
This is why government ought to discriminate and favor traditional marriage. Government rightly discriminates against smoking, for example, and favors certain "behaviors that promote the common good, such as home ownership, attending college, charitable giving, retirement investing, and job training. Citizens who own a home are not better than other citizens, but home ownership has a proven benefit for societal stability" (DeMint and Woodard, 127). Similarly, government ought to do more to see divorce rates go down.
But why should these out-of-wedlock kids even matter to liberals? In this country, children have been significantly minimized since 1973. Hell forbid that we uphold a traditional value like self-sacrifice. We can’t legislate morality and enforce one set of values over another, so the story goes. No, what really matters in our society is narcissism veiled in a certain bizarre notion of liberty and justice for all.
Genuine Equality and Its Results
Instead of this mess, the history of the world has realized something we have forgotten in the heat of the moment. Just because men and women may be equal doesn't entail that every activity they collaborate in is equally good. When it comes to the overall good of society, liberty and justice for all has traditionally allowed democracies to vote their convictions and values, and in keeping with them, men and women may equally participate in what results from them. Thus, homosexuals may equally and legally marry in California now... just to someone of the opposite sex!
That is not good enough for liberals. That is considered cruel, hateful, and insensitive. They will continue to push judges to overturn the will of the people, because they hypocritically think there is a value that can be legislated whenever it suits their lusts. Hell hath no fury like a liberal scorned.
Hate is not a family value, but correction is.
R. M. Sivulka
President, Courageous Christians United
May 27, 2009
|Conor says... |
|"Thank you, Rob! Very well done and clarifying, at least for me. " (6/9/09)|
|Frank says... |
|"Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington.
The will of the people supports love, marriage and family." (11/16/12)