Can Good People Be Against Same-Sex Marriage? October 31, 2012

Can Good People Be Against Same-Sex Marriage?

There was a time, not too long ago, where we had to present reasons to support same-sex marriage.

The tables are turning.  It seems to me that social conservatives and religious leaders no longer have the moral high-ground that they thought they did and are now having to present their side of the argument more and more.  And they’re doing a piss-poor job of it.

Dennis Prager, a writer and radio show host, put out an article on World Net Daily called “Why A Good Person Can Vote Against Same-Sex Marriage: No moral thinker ever advocated for 2 men being able to marry.”

If anyone wants to play Logical Fallacy Bingo, you can mark off “Appeal to Authority”  without even reading a word of the article itself!

He begins:

Next week voters in Maine, Maryland and Washington will vote on whether to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples.

Given that there are good people on both sides of this issue, how are we to explain their opposing views?

The primary explanation is this: Proponents and opponents ask two different questions.

Proponents of same-sex marriage ask: Is keeping the definition of marriage as man-woman fair to gays? Opponents of same-sex marriage ask: Is same-sex marriage good for society?

He goes on to explain that, no, denying gay marriage isn’t fair to gays. And, no, same-sex marriage is not good for society. Can’t have both. False dichotomy! Check!

When added to Americans’ aversion to discrimination, to the elevation of compassion to perhaps the highest national value, and to the equating of opposition to same-sex marriage with opposition to interracial marriage, it is no wonder that many Americans have been persuaded that opposition to same-sex marriage is hateful, backward and the moral equivalent of racism.

Prager, shockingly, does not see this parallel.  (Should we give him False Analogy on this one?)

While there are no differences between black and white human beings, there are enormous differences between male and female human beings. That is why sports events, clothing, public rest rooms and (often) schools are routinely divided by sex. But black sporting events and white sporting events, black rest rooms and white rest rooms, black schools and white schools, or black clothing stores and white clothing stores would be considered immoral.

Because racial differences are insignificant and gender differences are hugely significant, there is no moral equivalence between opposition to interracial marriage and opposition to same-sex marriage.

I’m losing track of his logic, so you guys are on your own from here on out.

I think he is getting in a little over his head on why it is easy to draw the parallels between interracial marriage and same sex marriage.  It’s not the fact that the difference between black and white people vs. men and women is exactly the same.  It’s that marrying whomever you see fit is our right.  And those of us who think that the love between two men or two women is as worthy of state recognition as that of a man and a woman often draw the parallel between interracial marriage simply because it’s the same idiots with the same damn arguments who are keeping it from happening.

It’s funny ’cause it’s true.

And now comes my favorite part of this whole article.  It’s the largest Appeal to Authority of all time:

Second, if opposition to same-sex marriage is as immoral as racism, why did no great moral thinker, in all of history, ever advocate male-male or female-female marriage? Opposition to racism was advocated by every great moral thinker. Moses, for example, married a black woman, the very definition of Catholic is “universal” and therefore diverse and has always included every race, and the equality of human beings of every race was a central tenet of Judaism, Christianity, Islam and other world religions. But no one — not Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad, Aquinas, Gandhi, not the Bible or the Quran or any other sacred text, nor even a single anti-religious secular thinker of the Enlightenment, ever advocated redefining marriage to include members of the same sex.

I guess I could sum up my response in one word: So?

I could go on: So what?  So effing what?

Also “Opposition to racism was advocated by every great moral thinker”? Really? Then what Bible were they using to justify slavery?

And now for something even more idiotic.  Prager sees the real danger in all of this:

The war on gender.

No, seriously.

The whole premise of same-sex marriage is that gender is insignificant: It doesn’t matter whether you marry a man or a woman. Love, not gender, matters.

That’s actually the first smart thing of this whole mess of an article.  Yes!  Love is more important than gender.

Oh, hold the phone.  He thinks that that’s a bad thing.  No, not just a bad thing.  THE WORST THING OF ALL THE THINGS!

Some examples of this war on gender:

  • This year Harvard University appointed its first permanent director of bisexual, gay, lesbian, transgender, and queer student life. The individual, Vanidy Bailey, has asked that he/she never be referred to as he or she, male or female. Harvard has agreed.
  • In 2010 eHarmony, for years the country’s largest online dating service, was sued for only matching men and women. Its lack of same-sex matchmaking meant that it violated anti-discrimination laws in some states. As a result, eHarmony was forced to begin a same-sex online service.
  •  When you sign up for the new social networking site, Google Plus, you are asked to identify your gender. Three choices are offered: Male, Female, Other
  • The socialist French government has just announced that in the future no government-issued document will be allowed to use the words “mother” or “father.” Only the gender-neutral term “parent” will be acceptable in France.

I am really struggling to find his point in all of this.  Maybe because I don’t attach my personal identity to my gender as strongly as he does.  Or maybe it’s because there isn’t a real point to be made.  He says that “long-term consequences” (scare-quotes intentional) are imminent.  He cites two “obvious consequences” of letting gay couples get married: “gender confusion and the loss of motherhood and fatherhood as values.” Is it just me, or is that a phrase empty of all decipherable meaning to anyone else?

So, in conclusion, gay people shouldn’t marry the person they love for the following reasons (according to Prager):

  1. Gandhi did not fight for same-sex marriage.
  2. Gender is different than race.
  3. Adults will have to ask little girls what “person” they want to marry instead of  what “boy” do they want to marry. (Let’s not get into the question itself…)
  4. Boys might want to act feminine.
  5. The term “motherhood” might lose it’s current hard-and-fast definition.
  6. Catholic means “universal”.  So gay people can’t get married.
  7. Dennis Prager is obviously uncomfortable living in a society of shifting norms and thinks that keeping the definition of a word is more important than the rights of millions of LGBTQ Americans.  So there.

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