February 12, 2005

Politics: Arguments Against

One of the great things about chopping wood is that you can have a maul in your hands and be thinking about anything you want, but no one can tell. If intent were the bulk of a crime, I'd have been arrested a couple times today.

So what's the problem this time? I just encountered the stupidest argument against gay marriage EVER: homosexuals shouldn't get married because they don't have divorce laws for them yet!

Ye gods.

So I talked to the person in question for a short while, and it ends up that he was talking about common law marriage, and how it could relate to same-sex roommates. Not the brightest bulb on the christmas tree, this. So it got me to thinking about all the possible arguments against gay marriage; there are a fair number, so why not go through them?

1) They can't have babies.

A) Fine by me! Actually, there are a fair number of couples I know who can't, or won't, have children for whatever reason. Like my wife and I, for instance. We are far too self-centred to have kids: I simply wouldn't have the time for them. If having kids is the sole purpose, or even the main purpose, of marriage then all those without children have invalid marriages. And I think we all know more than one couple who should never have had kids.
I got into a bit of a debate (big surprise, I know) with a gay man who tried to say that not having kids was his moral choice, what with overpopulation and all. I pointed out that he , like many gay folks, already had one child before he decided he couldn't live a lie anymore, so that statement was a bit of self-justification. He actually blushed.

2) Society is based on the family, and if there non-families are allowed, society will crumble into anarchy and chaos.

A) Marriage makes families: what part of this gets misunderstood? Almost every gay person I know tried to "play straight" for a while before they realised that they hated their lives and had to break free. Their exes may have had a period of adjustment (much like any other divorced family), but surely that's the better option? My own parents divorced, and frankly I'm bloody glad they did. I can't see where growing up in a house where the parents can't stand each other (still true after almost 30 years) is a good thing. In any case, every scandinavian country allows gay marriage, and they haven't collapsed yet. Denmark's been doing it for the past 15 years (1989); but we all know that those freaks have rampant turpitude throughout the nation, anyhow.

3) Family is: Mom, Dad, Kids. That's it. Anything else is just wrong.

A) A slight exaggeration on the question, but it's what many opposed to gay marriage use a half-dozen paragraph to say. If these folks are really focused on "Defending Marriage", then let's make divorce illegal. Even better: let's make the law retroactive, forcing all couples to return to whomever they first married. Know any divorced people? Ask them their opinion of this little law. And, of course, children would be manditory for married couples in, say, three years. Any longer, and they will be
susceptible to heavy fines, increasing each year thereafter. Then again, I'm already in the highest tax bracket for my income: no dependants, you see.

4) If you allow gays to marry, that's like saying it somehow all right to be gay.

A) Why, yes. Yes it is. Your point being...? Actually, the funniest "defence of marriage" I've ever encountered was when one person claimed that if homosexuality were permitted, then you could justify sex for pleasure (which it just can't be) , and no one would ever get married again. I guess people would rather be gay than married. Or something.

5) Gays can't be with a single partner for very long. They're always promiscuous!

A) Well, what say you ask the hetro folks how many lovers thay've had. If it's more than one per marriage, then that's promescuity. Anyhow, according to this study of Norway (which allowed gay marriage in 1993) and Sweden (1995), there simply isn't much of a difference in divorce rates between straights and gays. Granted, there are far, far fewer gay marriages (about 100 a year); so when one such couple gets divorced, it tends to skew the stats more dramatically than with straights, so there's a bit of wobble.

6) God says it's bad.

A) Ah, yes: the traditional "let's pick and choose the religous laws to live by" defence, despite the bible being very clear about this being a bad idea (Deut 12:32). Unless you avoid tatoos and are opposed to interracial marriages, this isn't even worth debating. Hey, and why hasn't god punished Denmark yet? They've got a reported 5,000 AIDS cases in a population of about 5.4 million people: hardly a plague, despite allowing gay marriage. No tidal waves, comets, or other natural catastorphies yet! Or unnatural ones, for that matter.

7) Same sex roommates will claim social security and other benifits just by living together, and that's cheating.

A) BS meter - off the scale! First off, any social service provided universally is going to have some abuses. For instance, someone who is self-employed but still collecting welfare. Second, what's to stop opposite sexed roommates from doing the same thing? If this was an actual concern, then opposition should be to ALL unmarried people who happen to live together. Third, why don't you give it a try? Go ahead: explain to your friends and family that you're actually gay. Hey, if you can get an extra $30 or $40 bucks off per month off of your income tax, that makes it worth it! Or better yet (as the person who got me started on this rant suggested) why don't you file for divorce and take half your ex-roomies stuff? Your family will back you up on this, right? Right?

These are lame bloody arguments against what is (to my mind) simply a matter of fairness. Allowing gays to marry is only polite, and frankly, it's just not going to affect many of us. About 16,000 gay couples in Canada have been married so far. Over 140,000 straight couples got married in Canada in one year.

Tell me again why this is such a big deal?

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posted by Thursday at 9:57 am

8 Comments:

Anonymous mikevil said...

Well written. I have yet to find anyone on the other side of the argument who can argue their case so rationally.

2:41 pm  
Blogger David Wozney said...

Bill C-38 contains the text: "NOW, THEREFORE, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:".

Do you believe "Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom, Canada and Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith" will enact legislation that is contrary to the Christian faith?

According to the Christian faith, marriage is honourable in all (Hebrews 13:4) whereas homosexual relationships (Romans 1:26-27) are not honourable.

Also, "he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please [his] wife" and "she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please [her] husband" (1 Corinthians 7:33-34).

By enacting Bill C-38, Queen Elizabeth II will have broken her promise to maintain, to the utmost of her power, the laws of God and the true profession of the Gospel.

The Lawful Definition of Marriage in Canada
http://www.ocii.com/~dpwozney/marriage.htm

9:49 am  
Blogger Thursday said...

Check out point 6 again. There are lots and lots of things that the bible says, quite explicitly, are bad. They aren't laws, according to the governments of either Canada or the United Kingdom. In other words, QEII has already "enacted legeslation that is contrary to the Christian faith".

Any reason to think she won't this time, too?

3:07 pm  
Blogger David Wozney said...

What legislation has QEII already enacted that is contrary to the Christian faith?

In the present church age, people today are not under Old Testament Mosaic law (which was for Israel) but rather are under New Testament Christian law.

New Testament Christian law does not prescribe any specified penalty, punishment, or enforcement for violations of the laws of God before the end of the present church age.

11:45 am  
Blogger Thursday said...

It's not just what "she" has enacted (like the ryoal family has bothered to veto anything we've wanted for the past hundred years), but what she's ignored. Luke 23:56, for instance, states that we cannot work on the sabbath: I know I (occasionally) work on a Sunday, how about you? Sticking with Luke, is only what was preached after John (Luke 16:16) to be considered a law, erasing all that was mwntioned before it? Or are all laws legitimate (Luke 16:17) that were brought forth from the prophets?

You state that there is no proscribed punishment (or enforcement) for the breaking of gods laws before the ending of the "present church age". Which begs the question: why not? Did free will only start after Christ?

Then there's the actual issue of whether or not religion should be used to form laws in a society 2000 years after that religion was founded. Or 1400 years, if you want to get Muslim about it. Or 4000 if you're Jewish. Or 50 years for Scientologists.

12:27 pm  
Blogger David Wozney said...

They that "rested the sabbath day according to the commandment" in Luke 23:56 were Israelites. Israel ceased to exist as a nation circa 70 AD when over a million Israelites were killed.

In the present church age, people today are not under Mosaic law (which was for Israel) but rather are under New Testament Christian law.

The resurrection of the whole house of Israel is a future event (Ezekiel 37:1-14, Isaiah 26:19).

"Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again."

The commandment in Matthew 7:1-2 (KJV) is to judge not violations of God's laws *along with* measures meted out. Nevertheless, both good and evil are to be discerned: "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good" (1 Thessalonians 5:21).

Israelites had free will and freedom of religion.

What is your definition of "Jewish"? How does one know that he or she is "Jewish"?

8:47 pm  
Anonymous mikevil said...

The Bible was written by man, published by man, and twisted into all manner of self-serving knots by man. The right wing is going to have to come up with a better argument than, "It says so in the Bible."

I don't know how poor Elizabeth II got all caught up in this argument. I know some queens who are much much closer to the issue, maybe david should ask them what they think.

12:31 pm  
Blogger Thursday said...

Elizabeth got caught up in this by the contention that, as (nominal) head of the Anglican church and (nominal) governor of Canada, she has an obligation to decide what laws would be allowed in Canada, and to ensure that they are in accordance with the Anglican church.

A couple, perhaps minor, problems with that: the Anglican church can't quite figure out what to do with North America: in the US they (anglicans) have elected to ordain an openly gay priest, and in Canada they have decided to give their blessing to gay marriage. There may well be yet another schism amongst Christians.

You may register surprise now.

The other difficulty with Liz getting involved is a two-parter: one is that Quebec (where support for gay marriage is strongest) would freak, and the other is that the rest of Canada would do likewise, though perhaps not to the same degree.

Hoping for the intercession of Queen Elizabeth on this ruling is, at best, desperate. She is a much smarter political animal than that.

As for Gods laws: apperently He called a "do over" for all the rules He applied in the Old Testament, is this right? The Jews were all gone, so those books didn't matter anymore? Or are you reading that all said laws only applied to "Israelites", an Israelites weren't/aren't Jews?

Define Jewish? Much like Christian, or vegetarian: apparently anyone who calls themselves one qualifies. The only tricky bit is whether you consider Jews a race, a nationality, a religion, or some combination thereof.

10:10 pm  

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