Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Supreme Court should uphold true meaning of marriage

The U.S. Supreme Court meets today and tomorrow to address two cases - whether California's Proposition 8 ban on marriage and the federal Defense of Marriage Act are consitutional.

Proponents of gay "marriage" say it is a matter of equality and civil rights. But if you look at marriage for what it is - the union between one man and one woman - equality becomes a moot point. Since two same sex partners cannot suddenly become opposite sex partners, nobody is being treated unequally because marriage, simply put, does not involve same-sex couples. That may sound harsh, but the issue is not so much about being opposed to gay "marriage" as it is about simple logic of definition.

Moreover, nowhere in the Constitution are marriage or homosexuality addressed, and nowhere does the Constitution demand changing this long-standing definition of marriage that diverse cultures and faiths have embraced and supported throughout all of Western civilization. Just like the issue of abortion should have been left to the states to decide, the Supreme Court should leave marriage to individual states as well. At the very least, it is not something that should be rushed into without some serious thought as to what the real impact would be on society, and especially on children who most benefit from a mother and father who are married.

As for the accusation that marriage as it's defined violates same-sex couples' civil rights, I would imagine those whose civil rights really were violated - like black Americans up until the 1960s - would be offended. Whether someone is homosexual or heterosexual, the sexual act is a voluntary choice. Being black, for example, is not a choice. And no homosexual person has ever been denied the right to vote or has ever been forced to work without pay. Equating the real struggles and hardships that black Americans have endured to a gay person's desire to be married is a phony premise, not to mention an insult.

It seems the issue is being confused between "civil unions" and marriage. Marriage was instituted by God. In Hebrews 13:4 it is stated, "Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous." Calling same-sex unions "marriage", is simply verbally inaccurate. Marriage is, by God's definition, the union between one man and one woman. Wanting marriage to mean same-sex unions is like wanting a table to be a chair. You can call it a chair all you want, but it's still a table. Perhaps same-sex activists should pursue expansion of "civil unions" benefits if they must, but leave marriage intact.

Of course not everyone believes in God or that the Bible comes from Him. Still, the federal government started endorsing marriage because a man and a woman, by nature, procreate. Of course some are unable to due to infertility and other issues, but that doesn't change the biological tendency of male-female unions. Same-sex couples, by nature, don't procreate. The federal government supports marriage simply to promote strong families because history shows that societies thrive when families are strong and united, headed by complementary - not interchangeable - parents.

A common argument put forth by same-sex couples is that they should get the same tax and other financial benefits (e.g. pensions to a widow) as heterosexual couples, and the fact that they don't violates their equality. But redefining the actual meaning of 'marriage' just so someone can get more money is hardly a principled motive, and once again, it has nothing to do with equality since it's an entirely separate issue.
Another argument often made is that the divorce rate of traditional marriage is so high, that there is no reason not to open it up to same-sex couples since heterosexuals aren't doing that great a job with it in the first place. But divorce rates have to do with many factors like cultural and moral decay, shifting attitudes about matrimony vs. "shacking up" and in many cases, simple immaturity. Traditional marriage is no more of a problem in itself than same-sex "marriage" is the fix to high divorce rates.

The other argument often heard is that God loves everyone, so therefore, to deny same-sex couples the right to marry as an expression of their love is hateful and unholy. Yes, God asks us to love the sinner, but He also asks us to condemn the sin, and homosexuality is clearly condemned several times in the Bible, e.g., Lev. 20:13 states, "If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act."

Homosexuality goes against the created order of God who made Adam, a man, and Eve, a woman -- not two men, not two women -- to carry out his command to fill and subdue the earth (Gen. 1:28). Homosexuality cannot carry out that command.  It is, therefore, a contradiction to God's stated desire in the created order. Redefining God's institution of marriage to accommodate a lifestyle contradictory to God's will is hardly the path we should take.

Does that mean we should hate homosexuals? Of course not! But if homosexual "marriage" is imposed on America by the Supreme Court, then anyone who opposes it based on biblical teachings will automatically be branded a bigot. This then empowers the government to target proponents of traditional marriage for Federal Hate Crimes litigation and other conequences.

In addition, by making same sex marriage open to same sex partners, the premise of love will, by default, make marriage a fair game for everyone, and it will only be a matter of time before anything goes. After all, why shouldn't a man marry his dog as long as there is love involved? Isn't the right to love one of the main arguments of same-sex marriage proponents. Based on that premise, who are we to deny a man and his dog their love in the formal bond of marriage?

Just as worrisome is that institutions like the Catholic Church could be sued for not performing same-sex marriages, and the final decision could be left to how some random judge feels about the issue as to whether the Church had to perform the ceremony or not. The government is already forcing Catholics to provide for abortifacients and contraception. Don't be fooled into thinking the government would stop at the doors of the Church itself.

This whole same-sex "marriage" issue is putting us on a very slippery and dangerous slope and that is why, at the very least, it needs to be given long-term and serious thought. Let's pray the Supreme Court sees marriage for what it is, not for what some special interest groups want it to be.

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  1. Julie,

    What I find troubling is the popular view of so many people who are more than willing to surrender the institution of marriage and what it means to society all to be politically correct. Nobody wants to be called intolerant or hateful so the thinking becomes “why not go along to get along.” Even more disturbing is that 9 individuals in black robes are now in the position of actually being able to destroy marriage as we know it. I agree with you that same sex marriage would indeed take us on a slippery slope. Certainly the Catholic Church would be identified as intolerant and litigation would soon follow in an attempt to force same sex marriages within the church. I am extremely pleased that Archbishop Vigneron recently addressed this issue with strong language to the Catholic faithful in regards to the church’s standing regarding same sex marriage. Great post (as always) and while it is still the season Happy Easter to you!

    1. Hi Ed B,

      I just now saw your comment - sorry about that! You always voice things so eloquently and truthfully. Thanks for your insights. You are spot-on. I am concerned about what this trend of judges over the people will do to our country and the Catholic Church. Thanks for the Easter wishes - same to you and God bless.