” fools rush in where wise men never go”
This post serves to emphasise the difference between the intellectual contributions of functional atheist Paul Brandeis Raushenbush, a pastor who writes for the Huffington Post and Adam Kolasinski , who at the time of his contribution was a doctoral student at MIT.
The difference is stark.
Let us agree with functional atheist Raushenbush that many if not most religions , including Christianity, reject homosexuality and that this rejection has resulted in oppression of LGBT person. This is undeniably true. It does not follow however that religions are illogical in their rejection of homosexuality or that such rejection must result in abuse.
Testifyingtotruth argues that a most destructive aspect of embracing homosexuality is the embrace of disordered thought and the effect this has on national laws and policies.
This disordered thinking rejects ” design with intent and for purpose in nature” and has resulted in legal decisions such as the striking down of the Defence Of Marriage Act (DOMA)
As far back as 2004 Kolasinki was able to recognise that marriage equality was an illogical concept.
Kolasinki argues that homosexual unions could never be equal in value to heterosexual unions to the state as the latter is the source of future human beings. He also argued that re-defining marriage so that it is adequately described by emotional and intimate union would lead to marital chaos.
The US Supreme Court has done just this.
1. The Court has not – as it cannot – made homosexual “marriage” equal to heterosexual marriage. What it has done is effectively make the unique capacity of the heterosexual union to provide new human beings of no moment in defining the institution and function of marriage.
2.Consequent on the above the Court has determined that the state should place no particular value on children being produced and reared in a union of an adult male and female.
3. In defining marriage in a manner which depends solely on emotion and intimate behaviour the Court has opened the possibility of marriage between any number , gender or specie of individuals.
Functional atheist like Paul Raushenbush need to understand that speaking truth is not “homophobia”
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A mob in Nigeria dragged men from their homes on Saturday and beat them with sticks and iron bars. These men were perceived to be homosexual, so instead of protecting them against the attack, the police took part and punched and kicked four of them. The violence comes in the wake of a new law signed last month that criminalizes homosexual unions, organizations and displays of affection between people of the same gender.
Friday, the Ugandan president announced that he plans to sign into law a bill that would make homosexuality a crime worthy of a life sentence. On Thursday, the Kansas house passed a bill that would make it legal for citizens and government employees to discriminate against gay people. Russia has a now well publicized “gay propaganda” law that has led to widespread hostility towards LGBT people.
There is a deplorable common thread that ties together these examples of the global oppression of LGBT people: Christian complicity.
When Nigeria’s president signed the draconian anti-gay law, the Catholic Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama of Jos praised the president for his “courageous and wise decision.”
The law in Uganda, known as the “Kill the Gays” bill, has well established origins in the concerted efforts by American evangelicals, vividly captured in the film God Loves Uganda. Russian anti-gay bills are widely supported by the Russian Orthodox Church and thugs who attack gay protestors have been known to carry Orthodox crosses while carrying out their violence. And in Kansas, the effort against LGBT people has been championed by Christians of a very particular stripe under the banner of “religious freedom.”
As an ordained Christian pastor, I am angered by my co-religionists’ collaboration and complicity with these laws that specifically target the LGBT community. How outrageous — how sinful — that our religious tradition should be used in the service of the demonization and denigration of our fellow human beings. It has gone on long enough. It is time for justice-minded Christians to get up off the sidelines and in the famous words of the Stonewall drag-queen Sylvia Rivera: “Not take any more of this shit.”
The good news is that many Christians both in the pews and in leadership positions are already standing with LGBT people. Archbishop Desmond Tutu recently said: “I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this.” And went on to say, “I am as passionate about this (LGBT Rights) campaign as I ever was about apartheid. For me, it is at the same level.”
Similarly, Irish Catholic Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin recently wrote, “anybody who doesn’t show love towards gay and lesbian people is insulting God. They are not just homophobic if they do that — they are actually Godophobic because God loves every one of those people.”
And the Episcopal Bishops in Kansas wrote a letter in response to the anti-gay bill that stated, “Our biblically based faith calls us to live out the command of Jesus Christ to love one another. You cannot love your fellow Kansans and deny them the rights that belong to everyone else.”
Those of us who are Christian have to add to and embolden these voices with our own. Christians should make sure that their churches, friends and denominational leaders have a chance to meet and talk to LGBT people and understand how being targeted by these laws makes us feel. Christians should take to their own Facebook pages and other social media and stand with LGBT people.
Religious leaders on every level must directly speak out against the complicity of Catholics, Orthodox and Protestant Christians in the targeting of God’s LGBT children. Pope Francis, I’m talking to you. It is time for you to use your prophetic voice and speak out against use of violence and for the full equality of LGBT people. All of those on Twitter should reach out to @Pontifex using #PopeSpeakOut
Recent events around the world show us that sitting on the sidelines is no longer permissible — especially for Christians. We cannot let others speak for Jesus. Our faith is being used to do serious harm to LGBT people. Showing love for our neighbor today, as commanded by Jesus, means stepping up and standing in solidarity with our LGBT sisters and brothers around the world.
The Secular Case Against Gay Marriage
The debate over whether the state ought to recognize gay marriages has thus far focused on the issue as one of civil rights. Such a treatment is erroneous because state recognition of marriage is not a universal right. States regulate marriage in many ways besides denying men the right to marry men, and women the right to marry women. Roughly half of all states prohibit first cousins from marrying, and all prohibit marriage of closer blood relatives, even if the individuals being married are sterile. In all states, it is illegal to attempt to marry more than one person, or even to pass off more than one person as one’s spouse. Some states restrict the marriage of people suffering from syphilis or other venereal diseases. Homosexuals, therefore, are not the only people to be denied the right to marry the person of their choosing.
I do not claim that all of these other types of couples restricted from marrying are equivalent to homosexual couples. I only bring them up to illustrate that marriage is heavily regulated, and for good reason. When a state recognizes a marriage, it bestows upon the couple certain benefits which are costly to both the state and other individuals. Collecting a deceased spouse’s social security, claiming an extra tax exemption for a spouse, and having the right to be covered under a spouse’s health insurance policy are just a few examples of the costly benefits associated with marriage. In a sense, a married couple receives a subsidy. Why? Because a marriage between two unrelated heterosexuals is likely to result in a family with children, and propagation of society is a compelling state interest. For this reason, states have, in varying degrees, restricted from marriage couples unlikely to produce children.
Granted, these restrictions are not absolute. A small minority of married couples are infertile. However, excluding sterile couples from marriage, in all but the most obvious cases such as those of blood relatives, would be costly. Few people who are sterile know it, and fertility tests are too expensive and burdensome to mandate. One might argue that the exclusion of blood relatives from marriage is only necessary to prevent the conception of genetically defective children, but blood relatives cannot marry even if they undergo sterilization. Some couples who marry plan not to have children, but without mind-reading technology, excluding them is impossible. Elderly couples can marry, but such cases are so rare that it is simply not worth the effort to restrict them. The marriage laws, therefore, ensure, albeit imperfectly, that the vast majority of couples who do get the benefits of marriage are those who bear children.
Homosexual relationships do nothing to serve the state interest of propagating society, so there is no reason for the state to grant them the costly benefits of marriage, unless they serve some other state interest. The burden of proof, therefore, is on the advocates of gay marriage to show what state interest these marriages serve. Thus far, this burden has not been met.
One may argue that lesbians are capable of procreating via artificial insemination, so the state does have an interest in recognizing lesbian marriages, but a lesbian’s sexual relationship, committed or not, has no bearing on her ability to reproduce. Perhaps it may serve a state interest to recognize gay marriages to make it easier for gay couples to adopt. However, there is ample evidence (see, for example, David Popenoe’s Life Without Father) that children need both a male and female parent for proper development. Unfortunately, small sample sizes and other methodological problems make it impossible to draw conclusions from studies that directly examine the effects of gay parenting. However, the empirically verified common wisdom about the importance of a mother and father in a child’s development should give advocates of gay adoption pause. The differences between men and women extend beyond anatomy, so it is essential for a child to be nurtured by parents of both sexes if a child is to learn to function in a society made up of both sexes. Is it wise to have a social policy that encourages family arrangements that deny children such essentials? Gays are not necessarily bad parents, nor will they necessarily make their children gay, but they cannot provide a set of parents that includes both a male and a female.
Some have compared the prohibition of homosexual marriage to the prohibition of interracial marriage. This analogy fails because fertility does not depend on race, making race irrelevant to the state’s interest in marriage. By contrast, homosexuality is highly relevant because it precludes procreation.
Some argue that homosexual marriages serve a state interest because they enable gays to live in committed relationships. However, there is nothing stopping homosexuals from living in such relationships today. Advocates of gay marriage claim gay couples need marriage in order to have hospital visitation and inheritance rights, but they can easily obtain these rights by writing a living will and having each partner designate the other as trustee and heir. There is nothing stopping gay couples from signing a joint lease or owning a house jointly, as many single straight people do with roommates. The only benefits of marriage from which homosexual couples are restricted are those that are costly to the state and society.
Some argue that the link between marriage and procreation is not as strong as it once was, and they are correct. Until recently, the primary purpose of marriage, in every society around the world, has been procreation. In the 20th century, Western societies have downplayed the procreative aspect of marriage, much to our detriment. As a result, the happiness of the parties to the marriage, rather than the good of the children or the social order, has become its primary end, with disastrous consequences. When married persons care more about themselves than their responsibilities to their children and society, they become more willing to abandon these responsibilities, leading to broken homes, a plummeting birthrate, and countless other social pathologies that have become rampant over the last 40 years. Homosexual marriage is not the cause for any of these pathologies, but it will exacerbate them, as the granting of marital benefits to a category of sexual relationships that are necessarily sterile can only widen the separation between marriage and procreation.
The biggest danger homosexual civil marriage presents is the enshrining into law the notion that sexual love, regardless of its fecundity, is the sole criterion for marriage. If the state must recognize a marriage of two men simply because they love one another, upon what basis can it deny marital recognition to a group of two men and three women, for example, or a sterile brother and sister who claim to love each other? Homosexual activists protest that they only want all couples treated equally. But why is sexual love between two people more worthy of state sanction than love between three, or five? When the purpose of marriage is procreation, the answer is obvious. If sexual love becomes the primary purpose, the restriction of marriage to couples loses its logical basis, leading to marital chaos.
Adam Kolasinski is a doctoral student in financial economics.