Saturday, June 27, 2015

The Irrefutable Argument

In response to:

Marriage Has Been Redefined: Now What?  by Trent Horn

Justice Anthony Kennedy’s definition of marriage in Obergefell:
Marriage responds to the universal fear that a lonely person might call out only to find no one there. It offers the hope of companionship and understanding and assurance that while both still live there will be someone to care for the other.

Wow.  This is the most appalling reason to marry I’ve ever seen; and I’ve seen some bad ones.  We get married so we don’t feel abandoned in the world—so SOMEBODY will be there for us?  This is not a reason to get married, it’s a reason to GET OUT OF THE HOUSE and meet some people and form friendships!  Are we so horrifically disconnected now that the only way we can see not ending up as a “lonely person” who “calls out only to find no one there” is by marrying someone, so they supposedly have to be there to “care for” us?  What a thoroughly sick culture we live in, where the only way we can be “assured” that we are cared for and not left utterly ALONE is if we can make somebody marry us.  All the worse, since marriage isn’t permanent now, so even if they DO marry me, I STILL could be “calling out only to find no one there,” whenever he gets tired of being “there” for me and decides to go be “there” for somebody else.  God help us.

Kennedy writes in Obergefell:
[T]he right to marry is fundamental because it supports a two-person union unlike any other in its importance to the committed individuals. The intimate association protected by this right was central to Griswold v. Connecticut, which held the Constitution protects the right of married couples to use contraception.

How can an intelligent, highly-educated person presumably skilled in argumentation NOT SEE that defining marriage exclusively according to its “importance to the committed individuals” CANNOT “support a two-person union,” period?  If that is what is central to what is a marriage, then ANY NUMBER OF INDIVIDUALS may decide to be so “committed,” may they not?  And how can we deny THEM this “fundamental” right?  Polygamy—of any number and combination of males/females/”others” cannot be disallowed by this radical redefinition of marriage.  For that matter, on what basis are we to deny the “right” of the fellow in Canada who petitioned the government to recognize his relationship with his DOGS as a marriage?  The fact that they are two different species?  Don’t be so judgey and speciesistic!  If it makes them happy, what right have we to exclude them from “sharing the love” (dear reader, please pronounce that last word in your head as Luuuuuuuuv).   

Trent’s suggestion to engage those who believe in this supposed notion of “marriage equality” is this:
We can ask them, “If you believe in marriage (however you may define it), would you join me in opposing laws that allow divorce for any reason? Will you uphold the sexually exclusive nature of marriage and condemn the rhetoric of people like Dan Savage who support “monogamish” relationships that allow for consensual infidelity? Will you stand with me in recognizing the harm caused by the millions of fathers who walk out on the children they have helped procreate? Will you fight for a child’s right to a relationship with the mother and father who brought him into existence?”

Okeydokey.  You want marriage, let’s talk MARRIAGE.

They will have to explain why society is better if it treats marriage licenses like municipally regulated dating certificates.

We already need this explained, even before there was any talk of same-sex “marriage.”  I guess we need to demand such an explanation, loudly.  Not, in this case, from the same-sex “marriage” crowd, but from the no-fault divorce crowd. 

Therefore, we must double down on fighting for marriage’s permanence and sexual exclusivity, both in our arguments in the public square and in choosing to value permanence, sexual exclusivity, and openness to life in the privacy of our own homes.

I will be very interested to see if and how this works in the public square.  Especially since the permanence and sexual exclusivity only make sense when you are talking about heterosexual marriages, because those relationships procreate children.  The permanence and sexual exclusivity are there to protect those children and attempt to provide the optimal conditions for raising them (i.e., in a stable home with their mother and father).  When you are addressing people who already think marriage is some kind of “government registry of friends with the most ‘feels’, ” I expect most of them would simply say, “yeah, you know, I hadn’t really thought much about that—I guess there’s no real reason why marriage SHOULD be permanent or exclusive.”  

On, in the comments section for this article, I asked Trent how he would respond to that, and I do hope he answers, because from watching him do “on the street” debating on the abortion issue, I know him to be a truly gifted debater.  But in the meantime, also from the comments, here is one absolutely excellent answer:

#2  James Matise
We as Christians are simply going to have to show the world what marriages really are. That means I have to remain in a permanent, procreative, exclusive union even if there are times when I don't want to. It means I can't excuse fornication or no fault divorce or open marriages, or contraceptive marriages, or act as if any of those things are okay and still claim to be holding a rational position. And it means I can't back down and I can't be hateful even if I get angry because my character is under attack. It's going to take courage and compassion.

Peter Kreeft (among others) has said that the one irrefutable argument for the truth of Christianity is the life of a saint.  Go, Saint James Matise and family! 

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