20 July 2012

Say NO to a Grand Bargain on Marriage!

Brilliant essay by Robert George of Princeton on the "inevitability/right side of history" rhetoric used by same-sex "marriage" pushers to pressure the rest of us into believing that we are cultural neanderthals for opposing their radical social experimentation.

[. . .]

The fundamental error made by some supporters of conjugal marriage was and is, I believe, to imagine that a grand bargain could be struck with their opponents: “We will accept the legal redefinition of marriage; you will respect our right to act on our consciences without penalty, discrimination, or civil disabilities of any type. Same-sex partners will get marriage licenses, but no one will be forced for any reason to recognize those marriages or suffer discrimination or disabilities for declining to recognize them.” There was never any hope of such a bargain being accepted. Perhaps parts of such a bargain would be accepted by liberal forces temporarily for strategic or tactical reasons, as part of the political project of getting marriage redefined; but guarantees of religious liberty and non-discrimination for people who cannot in conscience accept same-sex marriage could then be eroded and eventually removed. After all, “full equality” requires that no quarter be given to the “bigots” who want to engage in “discrimination” (people with a “separate but equal” mindset) in the name of their retrograde religious beliefs. “Dignitarian” harm must be opposed as resolutely as more palpable forms of harm.

As legal scholar Robert Vischer has observed, “The tension between religious liberty and gay rights is a thorny problem that will continue to crop up in our policy debates for the foreseeable future. Dismissing religious liberty concerns as the progeny of a ‘separate but equal’ mindset does not bode well for the future course of those debates.” But there is, in my opinion, no chance—no chance—of persuading champions of sexual liberation (and it should be clear by now that this is the cause they serve), that they should respect, or permit the law to respect, the conscience rights of those with whom they disagree. Look at it from their point of view: Why should we permit “full equality” to be trumped by bigotry? Why should we respect religions and religious institutions that are “incubators of homophobia”? Bigotry, religiously based or not, must be smashed and eradicated. The law should certainly not give it recognition or lend it any standing or dignity.

The lesson, it seems to me, for those of us who believe that the conjugal conception of marriage is true and good, and who wish to protect the rights of our faithful and of our institutions to honor that belief in carrying out their vocations and missions, is that there is no alternative to winning the battle in the public square over the legal definition of marriage. The “grand bargain” is an illusion we should dismiss from our minds.

[. . .]

George makes an excellent observation: early 20th century eugenics programs and abortion "rights" were framed by the Left as "inevitable evolutions" in science and reason.  Eugenics has been soundly defeated and abortion is well on its way to becoming a stinking political albatross gracing the throat of every Leftist in America.  

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  1. Robert George is quite right - there is no hope of bargain or compromise on this issue. In today's Irish Times, for suggesting that the people of Ireland are entitled to democratic consultation on issue of same-sex marriage it was suggested that I was effectively advocating tyranny. http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/letters/2012/0720/1224320449684.html
    When it comes to their 'rights' they will not compromise. Which should make it clear to all that neither can we.

  2. Sawyer10:15 PM

    The whole problem is caused by treating homosexuality as if it is something good or neutral. If homosexuality were understood correctly and considered by society to be a disorder, and if same-sex unions were acknowledged to be (at the very least) inferior to the natural union of a man and a woman, then the problems caused by attempting to recognize both religious liberty and "gay rights" would vanish. The problem is an avoidable problem: caused by unwise and immoral laws that grant phony rights and legal recognition to unnatural couplings, caused by asserting equality between two types of relationships that are not at all equal in nature nor in value. Religious liberty and "gay rights" cannot coexist; one must prevail. By introducing the disorder of homosexuality into the legal system, America has created a disorder in law that is now metastasizing to attack other rational and moral codifications in the law. The legal protection of homosexual unions is like a societal auto-immune disorder: now that it has infected the society, it will attack the healthy legal structures and eventually weaken the entire body until the society dies. That is, unless society vaccinates itself against the disorder; but the patient is very sick, and some of its organs (states) are near failing.

  3. ModerateRealist10:49 AM

    Apart from your presumptions about homosexuality, I think you fail to see this in context as one more moment or example in a larger societal shift, of which it is merely a part. Contemporary liberalism, which dominates our elites and a huge part of our population, is entranced with the victim. Any group that can gain victim status in this paradigm will eventually have a right to legal righting of its wrongs, real or imagined. The Nina Pinta and Santa Maria of this new conquest are Multiculturalism, Feminism and Redistributionism, righting the wrongs of race, sex and class. Gay marriage, and gay politics generally, is merely a subset of feminism's drive to eradicate male power by rendering the differences between the two sexes irrelevant.