Thursday, June 27, 2013


I've been trying to think what to say about the SCOTUS decision. Then Gabriel Blanchard said it for me. Cheers.


  1. That's very well put. Thanks for linking.

    (Although I do believe that Justice Scalia got it right when he said the ruling gives the basis for future decisions requiring gay marriage across the board; and I also believe that when that happens, the Catholic Church and others will become the Bob Jones University of the 21st Century. But that's all potential future, and not inevitable.)

  2. I'm disappointed with the decision just because I think the legal grounds for the decision is wrong and that it was influenced by politics. I don't get the fact that the debate has been boiled down to either gay rights, on the one hand, and religious beliefs, on the other hand, and legal philosophy is just seen as something in the way of a result that people want.

    I disagree with Gabriel's perspective that historically Christian marriage was seen as about love and not at about procreation. It was about both at the same time, its not an either/or. Historically, women were put in a precarious situation because of the fact that their social sphere revolved around the home and raising children. If they were divorced by their husbands because of infertility, or at a late age, they might be put into poverty and wouldn't be able to remarry. And even today, most of the social benefits around marriage are indeed about raising children. Health benefits, for instance, are designed around the fact that one parent is expected to stay home and raise a child, while the other one works.

    The thing that has moved the perception about marriage is not either the LGBT movement or Christians, but cultural transitions we've gone through in the 20th century. More social freedom for women, and the sexual revolution.

    But even still, that doesn't mean everyone everywhere disassociated marriage from procreation and the use of this standard was a last-ditch attempt to oppose court rulings. Back in the 90s, the common, conservative retort to proponents was that gays had the rights they were asking for. What do people think that meant? It was never disingenuous or cynical; it was based on a different understanding of marriage -- one side of the both/and equation.

    None of that means that marriage can't change with the times, and that's already underway.

    I would however argue, that I don't see this as a gay issue, and I think if both sides stopped seeing it that way it would help resolve some differences. Like conservatives said back in the 90s, anyone who wanted to had the choice of marrying someone of the opposite sex. And the situation will be now the reverse too, anyone who wants to can have the choice of marrying someone of the same sex. And there's nothing wrong with that.

    Civil marriage, just like it need not be about procreation, need not be about romantic love. There are other types of love. Two friends can feel like brothers and have fraternal love for each other, and decide to cohabit and decide they want the benefits of civil marriage. Christian employers need not assume a same-sex marriage is about sex. Even for gay couples, too, by the way; they may be interested in chastity.

    This isn't a disingenuous argument, either. Like I mentioned on the other post here, I'm happy being celibate. I haven't decided not to form a romantic relationship, but it may be the case that I don't. In which case, I may live alone, or may decide to live with someone else. I believe "brotherships" and "sisterships" were once in law to facilitate this type of thing.


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