Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Gay Marriage: Who Are the Real Bigots?

From Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe:
Plainly, declining to change the timeless definition of marriage deprives no one of “the civil rights once denied” to blacks, and it is an absurdity to claim otherwise. It is also a poisonous slur: For if opposing same-sex marriage is like opposing civil rights, then voters who backed Proposition 8 are no better than racists, the moral equivalent of those who turned the fire hoses on blacks in Birmingham in 1963.

Which is, of course, exactly what proponents of same-sex marriage contend.

It has become routine for the defenders of traditional wedlock to be cast as the worst sort of hateful bigots, “gladly donning the roles played by Lester Maddox and George Wallace in the civil rights era,” to quote The New York Times’s Frank Rich. Anyone who insists that marriage can only mean the union of male and female -- and “anyone” now includes a majority of voters in 30 of the 30 states where marriage amendments have been on the ballot -- can expect to be told that they are no better than racists, modern-day segregationists motivated by malevolence and an evil heart.

Thus, supporters of same-sex marriage regularly referred to the California ballot measure as “Proposition Hate,” while a group calling itself “Californians Against Hate” launched a website to publicize the names and addresses of donors to the Yes-on-8 campaign. Yet it was the foes of Proposition 8 whose hatred and intolerance were most vividly on display. Signs promoting the amendment were stolen or defaced, churches were vandalized, and at least one supporter of the amendment ended up in the hospital after being beaten by an assailant screaming: “What do you have against gays?”

For sheer hatefulness and bigotry, however, nothing surpassed the anti-Proposition 8 television ad that depicted two Mormon missionaries forcing their way into the home of a married lesbian couple.

“Hi, we’re here from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” one of the Mormons says. “We’re here to take away your rights,” says the other.

The missionaries pull the wedding rings from the women’s fingers, then proceed to ransack the house, looking for their marriage license. When they find it, they triumphantly tear it up.

“Hey, we have rights,” one of the women protests.

“Not if we can help it,” one of the missionaries smugly replies.

As the commercial ends, a message appears on the screen: “Say NO to a church taking over your government.”

If black voters overwhelmingly reject the claim that marriage amendments like Proposition 8 are nothing more than bigotry-fueled assaults on civil rights, perhaps it is because they know only too well what real bigotry looks like. Perhaps it is because they resent the assertion that adhering to the ageless meaning of marriage is tantamount to supporting the pervasive humiliation and cruelty of Jim Crow. Perhaps it is because they are not impressed by strident condemnations of “intolerance” and “hate” by people who traffic in rank anti-Mormon hatemongering.

Or perhaps it is because they understand that a fundamental gulf separates the civil rights movement from the demand for same-sex marriage. One was a fight for genuine equality, for the right of black Americans to live on the same terms, and under the same restrictions, as whites. The other is a demand to change the terms on which marriage has always been available by giving it a meaning it has never before had. That isn’t civil rights -- and playing the race card doesn’t change that fact.
Other examples of “gay rights” bigotry abound, including the disruption of a church service in Michigan, and the forced resignation of the director of the California Musical Theatre because he made a campaign donation supporting traditional marriage.

Add to that the fact that, right here on the Marquette campus, the former President of the Gay/Straight Alliance, insisted that no speaker opposing gay marriage should be allowed on campus, since such opposition would constitute “hate speech.”

In Massachusetts, for example, people opposed to gay marriage were subjected to harassment and intimidation.

The gay lobby, and their liberal allies, can’t tolerate people who disagree with them. The movement is essentially fascist.

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OpenID Nick said...

Ummm... interesting take... but mostly sidestepping the issue. While I would hope that we can all agree that non-violent discourse, on any subject, is always the best... it doesn't say a single thing about whether banning gay marriage is or is not biggotted.

The methods that many of those people chose, namely violence, as well as attacks on churches, are clearly wrong. But that doesn't mean that they are wrong regarding their rights... and pointing out that they used violent means does nothing to refute their rights.

That's essentially like saying that because some anti-abortion protesters bomb abortion clinics, their methods prove that abortion should remain legal.

I abhore their methods, but I still think abortion should be outlawed. Likewise, violence against churches is wrong, but that doesn't mean gay marriage should be outlawed.

9:52 AM  
Blogger John McAdams said...


Your comment, of course, is fair enough so far as it goes.

But arguing gay marriage is a topic for another post. I was just addressing the issue "who are the bigots?" On this issue, at least recently in California, the bigots are mostly gay marriage supporters.

Which is not to say that all gay marriage supporters are bigots.

Pointing out that fact is basically a challenge to liberals whose logic goes "I'm going to side with the tolerant people." If that's how they reason, they need to rethink their position.

Of course, it's perfectly possible that intolerant people may happen to be right on the substance of a particular issue.

11:04 AM  
Blogger Vidoqo said...

"On this issue, at least recently in California, the bigots are mostly gay marriage supporters."

Anyone can be prejudiced and intolerant. But in my opinion, prop 8's popularity is derived in large part from traditional, historical bigotry against gays. Many would deny the charge - who in their right mind ever admits to being a bigot? They would simply say they "disagree" with the lifestyle, or find it conflicts with their religious convictions. But in my opinion, the existence of this disagreeable feeling as well as religious sentiment has its origins in social bigotry, the intolerance of a minority sexual preference. Because of this, I find that while some prop 8 proponents may certainly be bigoted, those who voted for it are clearly so.

There are two main arguments against gay marriage: 1)It goes against religious teaching 2)It goes against tradition.

A law based solely on religious interpretation is unconstitutional - you have to have more than that. And as for tradition, this argument baffles me. Appeal to tradition is one of the most basic logical fallacies. Again, you have to have more than that. This sentiment is typified by the expression, "Marriage is between a man and a woman." OK, that is a statement, not an argument. There is literally no basis to it.

To me, the religious argument is quite strong, although not in any legal sense. If one takes a completely literal reading of the bible, then one must find homosexuality wrong. But anything less, and you have already slid into the relative nature of interpretation. IN other words, you have to have something better to go on than pointing to a line in text and creating your laws accordingly.

7:56 PM  
Anonymous Brazilian Woman said...

Gay marriage is now performed in selected country. Why other country can allow gay marriage.

12:17 AM  

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