|Contemplative Dog sadly contemplates
the state of modern debate and rhetoric,
particularly on gay marriage. Shortly after
sitting for this photo, Contemplative Dog
assuaged her melancholy, returning to
licking herself, Bill the Cat style.
To say ‘Puter’s conflicted on gay rights generally and gay marriage specifically would be to understate his discomfiture.
As a social and moral matter, ‘Puter is against gay marriage.
As a legal matter, ‘Puter believes that once gays are permitted to marry, gays are entitled to all the rights and privileges associated therewith.
Further, and on a human level, ‘Puter tries his darndest to live by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s maxim to judge others by the content of their character, not the color of their skin (or who they’re shacked up with).* **
‘Puter spent part of yesterday reading the two decisions, namely, United States v. Windsor, No. 12-307and Hollingsworth v. Perry, No. 12-144. ‘Puter, perhaps foolhardily, posted on Facebook his thoughts regarding the decisions themselves from a legal perspective, without judgment on the underlying issue of gay marriage itself. (You can see much of what ‘Puter posted here, if you’d like). As any sentient person (‘Puter apparently not being one) would expect, the reaction was fast, furious and frothing. Much of the negative commentary was polite, yet pointed and thoughtful, enabling a good give-and-take on the merits. Some of the negative reaction was expectedly emotional. ‘Puter was, however, shocked by the ferocity of one friend’s negative reaction.
The less helpful negative reaction boiled down to, “Why do you have to piss on our parade? Can’t you leave us alone?” ‘Puter politely replied that in fact he had not denigrated homosexuals or yesterday’s decisions, merely discussed the merits thereof, pro and con, good and bad. ‘Puter also provided some thoughts on whether or not the decisions constituted a Pyrrhic victory for gay marriage, potentially leaving gays in certain states eternally out in the cold. Yet, despite ‘Puter’s cold, dispassionate analysis, emotionalism among his more liberal friends trumped their logical capacity.
‘Puter understands this debate is fraught with emotionality. However, that fact does not excuse the lack of decorum exhibited by many of ‘Puter’s interlocutors, ranging from unfounded accusations of bigotry, to the visual equivalent of spiking the football, to logic-free arguments steeped in fundamental ignorance and incoherence. It saddens ‘Puter that some gay marriage advocates seem constitutionally unable to be gracious in victory and incapable of formulating a cogent argument.
After thinking about it overnight, ‘Puter’s decided to state, once and for all, what he believes about gay marriage. Here goes:
Gay marriage is a bad idea.
Marriage is the basis of Western civilization. Period. Full stop. And marriage has been the union of one man and one woman, bonded together before state (and God) in order to raise the next generation. There is no dispute that all things being equal, children generally do better in a household with two, married, biological parents. Millennia of human history and experience illustrate the success of the traditional model of marriage.
Over the years, states protected families through, among other things, laws of intestate succession, spousal privilege, preferential tax treatments and a myriad other things we all take as a given. This special, unique treatment is afforded traditional marriage precisely because it is the sine qua non of a successful society.
To their credit, most gay marriage advocates don’t deny the importance of family. Rather, gay marriage advocates claim simply, “How is tweaking the definition of marriage to include us going to hurt anything? Just as you were born straight, we were born gay. Our love is every bit as deserving of recognition as yours.” But that’s where gay marriage advocates steal a logical base or twelve. It is not the burden of traditional marriage advocates to show why gay marriage shouldn’t be permitted; it is the burden of gay marriage advocates to show why gay marriage should be permitted.
And this is as it should be. When a group advocates changing what all rational people must admit has been a bedrock component of our civilization for ages, they’d better have some darned good evidence that, at a minimum, making such a change will do no harm. Let’s look at but a few examples.
Despite countless assurances for the modern lefties otherwise, the poorly thought out liberalization of divorce laws clearly weakened marriage, wreaking havoc on ‘Puter’s generation (Generation X) and weakening America’s traditional family-based social structure. Ask any Gen Xer, and he’ll recount story after story of his parents’ or his friends’ parents’ bitter, acrimonious divorces. The scars liberalized divorce laws inflicted on ‘Puter’s generation are, as President Obama is fond of saying, beyond debate.
Let’s look back on another 1960s era “advance” and its impact on family: The Sexual Revolution. Fueled by the Left’s insistence (and the Supreme Court’s discovery of a nonexistent “right to privacy,” emanating from the Constitution and found only in its penumbras, on the third Tuesday of the fourth month of the Year of the Monkey, and then only if you’re wearing the secret spectacles) that birth control should be available on demand by all women (and men) married or not. The Boomer-led spasm of debauchery and libertinism that followed the realization that copulating with leporine abandon*** was consequence free. The fusion of Free Love, “Feminism,” The Pill and Abortion on Demand accelerated the decoupling**** of sex from procreation, leaving today’s women bemoaning men who won’t grow up and commit to them fully. And why should men? Women are conditioned to put out quickly, despite a suitor’s demonstrated lack of commitment, which is no longer necessary since there’s no serious potential of conception occurring, and even if it did, it’s incumbent on young women to exercise their freedom to choose.
There can be no serious debate that both the liberalization of divorce laws and the Free Love era brought on by widespread availability of birth control have had significant and deleterious effects on marriage and family in America.*****
As for gay marriage, advocates have presented no evidence that redefinition of marriage will not materially harm marriage itself. Advocates have presented heart-tuggingly emotional arguments based on undefined notions of “fairness” and “justice,” but no one can state with any sufficient measure of certainty that red-pencilling marriage’s definition to accommodate the union of any two adult persons will not further harm the fundamental building block of our nation.
Opponents of gay marriage have no hard evidence on actual deleterious effects resulting from legalization of gay marriage either. But it’s not the opponents’ burden to do so. Further, as detailed above, we have ample history with well-intentioned liberalizations of family law with disastrous consequences.
Gay marriage advocates have not met their burden, nor have they seriously tried to do so. What advocates have achieved, though, is the general acceptance of raw emotionalism and appeals to self-defined notions of “fairness” and “justice” in lieu of actual proof.
That said, and despite ‘Puter’s beliefs on the inadvisability of gay marriage, it is the duly enacted law in ‘Puter’s state of New York. As such, ‘Puter agrees that it is unconstitutional to treat one lawful marriage different from another.
So where does that leave ‘Puter? ‘Puter imagines that leaves him where many, if not most, Americans are: fence sitting.
‘Puter’s not fond of gay marriage; it’s a bad idea. But it’s legal in New York, and it’s illogical and unconstitutional to treat similarly situated individuals differently (not to mention beyond Congress’ enumerated powers to legislate), so ‘Puter’s pro-DOMA repeal. ‘Puter believes voters should have to live with the consequences of their own actions, especially when they bitch about what they so recently did as unfair and inhumane, so he’d have loved the Court to have upheld Proposition 8, but it was wrong legally to do so.
But most of all, ‘Puter believes – as the vast majority of his compatriots who are against gay marriage do – that gays are human beings, worthy of dignity and respect regardless of our fundamental disagreement on this issue.
It would be nice if gay marriage advocates would return the courtesy.
*Not to mention the teachings of his Faith (Roman Catholicism (or Papistry, as the Prods call it) for those not in the know). See, e.g., Catechism of the Catholic Church, Part Two, Section Two, Chapter Three, Article 7, Section I, Subsection 1601 (“The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.”).
**See also, Catechism of the Catholic Church, Part Three, Section Two, Chapter Two, Article 6, Section II, Subsection 2358 (“The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.”).
***’Puter was going to write “f*cking like bunnies,” but “copulating with leporine abandon” is so much classier.
****Get it? “Decoupling” It’s a sex joke! Tee hee. Or not so much.
*****’Puter acknowledges that both divorce and birth control have had positive effects, such as permitting battered wives legal standing to ditch their abusive spouse . However, the positive effects are, in ‘Puter’s opinion, negated by the more serious trauma to marriage these conventions have caused.
Always right, unless he isn’t, the infallible Ghettoputer F. X. Gormogons claims to be an in-law of the Volgi, although no one really believes this.
’Puter carefully follows economic and financial trends, legal affairs, and serves as the Gormogons’ financial and legal advisor. He successfully defended us against a lawsuit from a liquor distributor worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid deliveries of bootleg shandies.
The Geep has an IQ so high it is untestable and attempts to measure it have resulted in dangerously unstable results as well as injuries to researchers. Coincidentally, he publishes intelligence tests as a side gig.
His sarcasm is so highly developed it borders on the psychic, and he is often able to insult a person even before meeting them. ’Puter enjoys hunting small game with 000 slugs and punt guns, correcting homilies in real time at Mass, and undermining unions. ’Puter likes to wear a hockey mask and carry an axe into public campgrounds, where he bursts into people’s tents and screams. As you might expect, he has been shot several times but remains completely undeterred.
He assures us that his obsessive fawning over news stories involving women teachers sleeping with young students is not Freudian in any way, although he admits something similar once happened to him. Uniquely, ’Puter is unable to speak, read, or write Russian, but he is able to sing it fluently.
Geep joined the order in the mid-1980s. He arrived at the Castle door with dozens of steamer trunks and an inarticulate hissing creature of astonishingly low intelligence he calls “Sleestak.” Ghettoputer appears to make his wishes known to Sleestak, although no one is sure whether this is the result of complex sign language, expert body posture reading, or simply beating Sleestak with a rubber mallet.
‘Puter suggests the Czar suck it.