Sunday, December 21, 2008

Forget Marriage, Gay or Not ... Kill Tradition Altogether

Bob Ostertag, in "Why Gay Marriage is the Wrong Issue," is brutally honest in revealing the subterranean agenda that girds the left's blitzkreig assault on tradition - from marriage itself (which will no longer have original meaning once homosexuals enjoy the same right of union that's by both nature and tradition only available to one man and one woman) to the entire Western ethical system based in Judeo-Christian morality:

Through years of queer demonstrations, meetings, readings and dinner table conversations, about gay bashing, police violence, job discrimination, housing discrimination, health care discrimination, immigration discrimination, family ostracism, teen suicide, AIDS profiteering, sodomy laws, and much more, I never once heard anyone identify the fact that they couldn't get married as being a major concern. And then, out of the blue, gay marriage suddenly became the litmus test by which we measure our allies. We have now come to the point that many unthinkingly equate opposition to gay marriage with homophobia.

Rick Warren is now the flash point, the one all our political allies, even Barack Obama, are supposed to denounce because he doesn't pass gay marriage the litmus test.

I disagree with Rick Warren on many things. To start with, he believes that 2000 years ago God sent his only Son to die on a cross so that mankind would not perish but have everlasting life. To me, that's weird. I don't know how to even begin to address an idea that far out. And he believes that everyone who does not accept Jesus as their savior will go to hell. He doesn't single out gays and lesbians in particular. To me, the weirdest thing there is not that he thinks queers will go to hell, but that he believes in hell at all. But mainline Protestants believe in hell too. So do Catholics, who also add purgatory and limbo.

Steve Waldman, founder of Belief.net (where you find the most thoughtful exchanges on present day religion), did an extended interview with Warren which has been hyped all over the blogosphere as an example of why we should all be screaming for Obama to disinvite Warren from the inaugural. The quote that got all the attention was when Warren said gay marriage would be on a par with marriage for incest, pedophilia and polygamy. And yes, I think that's off-base. Not up there are the scale of the whole God-sent-his-only-Son-to-die-on-a-cross bit, but weird nonetheless.

I thought this was satirical at first, but it's not.

Read
the whole thing. It's a tricky argument. On the one hand, Ostertag amounts a vicious atheist attack on marriage traditionalists and those of religious faith. But on the other hand he suggests he'd be perfectly willing to work with "progressive" evangelicals who want to tackle "more important" problems, like global warming, which just "can't wait."

Note though that Ostertag conflates the whole of pro-marriage traditionalism into a faith-based pigeonhole. And that's the trick: There are powerful
secular arguments against same-sex marriage, so when leftists take issue with the spiritual proponents of traditionalism, they work to attack the larger edifice of Western culture and tradition that's been the basis for the American political culture, the rise of capitalism (the Protestant work ethic), and the natural law rationalism that grew out of the Enlightement and sustains modern democratic institutions.

The religious argument against gay marriage is a good one. But those who take that approach will be bogged down in defending against anti-Christianist assaults, not to mention the debate over "religious rites" versus "civil rights." And while religion ultimately provides what is in essence the supreme power of universal reason, debating gay marriage on religious grounds puts people of faith in a position of endlessy rebutting spurious allegations of congregational bigotry.


It's too bad that things have come to this, but those who respect traditional values are in a sense fighting a secular creed, an atheistic faith that would banish universal good from the public square altogether. It's this underlying secular humanist agenda that will destroy all that's best about our culture, not just heterosexual marriage traditionalism alone, but the entire moral firmament beneath it.

11 comments:

Grace Explosion said...

Exactly. I think you nailed it in your last paragraph. My position, Donald, is this. I don't NEED to win a debate with the atheists - God love 'em. That isn't "how it works". This is how it works in my view of reality: "If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray, turn from their wicked ways, seek my face, then I will hear from Heaven and heal their land." See, that is my whole "strategy": Great Awakening.

I can't "bring reason" to people who don't reason according to reason. I can, however, call on the Almighty - like Joan of Arc. :)

See, here's my point. If we who are Christian REALLY DO BELIEVE the Bible, we'll laugh at them. The only way they "have any power"... is if we truly believe that "we win a culture war" by winning a debate with them. (I'm laughing. I'm not falling for that one! lol) It's a diversionary tactic, from my view of reality. Alexander the Great didn't fight his battles to the tune of his enemy's concepts of how the battle should be fought. He came up with his own strategy and decimated his enemies. I think it's great to debate on a level in the public square. I think it's necessary and I thank God for those called to that service. YET, the primary strategy is to restore the foundation to the church of the Sovereignty of God - the Calvinist doctrines that Arminiasm has pulled out from underneath the church: all her strength. As those foundations are restored, God will hear from Heaven and heal our land.

That's where I'm coming from. Truth101 and JBW can say I'm crazy.

Crazy like a fox, men, crazy like a fox. ;) The Almighty is coming... and no man will stand before Him nor have any power to withhold His Hand. He will come because I, Laura aka Grace Explosion, will invoke Him in power... like you've never seen, detractors. :) Now you're playing with apostle. This guy who wrote the article thinks that's "crazy". Crazy like a fox. lol

Grace.

Van Zan said...

I agree with your reasoning up to a point, and then it devolves into a polemic that says our whole culture is under siege, which does not work so well for me.

Just from my own point of view, which is not unique, and which I know you won't agree with:

Yes there are valid secular arguments against same-sex marriage...
I think a lot of people would consider those in shaping their view.
However a religious argument is not something that I want to entertain, because I'm not a religious person. I also do not agree that religion (Christian or other) provides "supreme power of universal reason". How can it be universal if not everyone reasons that way?

My first inclination when met with a religious argument is to oppose that argument. I suppose that puts me in the camp of your "secular creed", but that does not mean I abandon all tradition or seek to destroy the faiths of others. I just don't want someone else's faith dictating how I live.

Can you see that point of view?

If gay people are to be denied a particular freedom for a greater cultural imperative, that imperative had better be as inclusive as possible and - however differently you might think - a religious underpinning makes that principle less inclusive, not more, because not everyone has the same sort of faith.

Norm said...

This issue has nothing to do with denying a "freedom" to a particular segment of society. Freedom has nothing to do with obtaining a Certificate of Marriage. Americans can live together in civil unions or in a common law union. Freedom is not denied.
By saying that we are denying a particular freedom to gay citizens is incorrect.

Van Zan said...

They're denied a specific legal status then... (which everyone else is 'free' to have).

Montag said...

i can't buy into the 'threat' and 'assault' rhetoric. this is probably exactly what you mean by the "'religious rites' versus 'civil rights'" argument, but how does state recognition of non-traditional marriages threaten traditional values, or religious marriage for that matter?

i am with Van Zan in holding to a ethic of universals, and so reject certain aspects Judeo-Christian morality. at least in the sense that i think the state should not discriminate or limit the exercise of individual freedoms that do not directly harm others in service of exclusive moral tenets.

Grizzly Mama said...

"Blogger Van Zan said... They're denied a specific legal status then... (which everyone else is 'free' to have). December 22, 2008 5:05 AM"

They're not. They are free to marry someone of the opposite sex.

The original argument - way back before the gay activists attempted to hijack the civil rights movement - was that gays would like to enjoy some of the benefits that married people enjoy. A lot of progress had been made in that direction. Now all of a sudden it's not good enough.

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repsac3 said...

Sorry Grizzly... That really isn't good enough...

Blacks & whites were free to marry their own kind (but not to marry outside their own race) once, too... The argument that black/white couples were not being discriminated against because they were each free to marry their own race, shows the shallowness of that line of thinking. That a homosexual man isn't prevented from marrying a woman does not mean he has the same right to marry under law as do you or I. We are not prevented from marrying the person we love. He is.

Homosexual couples are looking for ALL of the same gov't provided rights & privileges (benefits) that traditionally married people enjoy. Many of us believe the US government has no right or compelling reason to prevent them from doing so.

Whether based on religion, morality, or some odd sense that "we" deserve something "they" do not (whatever the seemingly logical, rational, historic, or spiritual reason), times are changing, and our innate sense of equality under law & under God is expanding again to become more inclusive. And just as in the past, there will come a day when we Americans will wonder that anyone ever argued against it.

cracker said...

Wow....

Let me first say Thanks for the Blog Mr. Douglas,....... I find myself returning often, simply because of the "Robust" commentary over your essays.....and realized I had'nt offered a hint of an introduction...I sincerely apologize
to you and your guests.

Merry Christmas and a Pleasure to meet ya!, please...call me Cracker : )

Now, as for this post, goodness, those last 3 paragraphs had a hint of "frothing"?.....maybe?

I felt a shift from American "Power" to American "Paranoia"? or "Polarity"?

or is it just me?

Grizzly Mama said...

Sorry - equating gay tribulations to the black people's fight for equality under the civil rights movement is ridiculous. There is no comparison, and you don't even see that, do you?

As I said before, gays were making great progress in securing the benefits that married couples enjoy. It wasn't good enough. Gay activists just had to try to jump on that civil rights bandwagon. It's a disgrace, a lie, and makes an absolute mockery out of the people who suffered and died fighting for civil rights for blacks in America.

Shame on you. You get no sympathy from me.

repsac3 said...

Refuse to see it all you like, Grizzly...

Rights are rights, regardless of whose are being trampled... The reasoning you offer is so similar to the reasoning offered by the anti-miscegenationists of old, it's no wonder folks follow your lead in making the comparison between that time & this.

No one wants your sympathy. Stay to your path, and the world will pass you by, just as it did for the "traditionalists" before you, in their attempts to hold back others (women, blacks, Catholics, the handicapped) who now have equal rights & equal access under law.