Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Polygamy

This article explores the issue, citing Colby College philosophy professor Cheshire Calhoun, high profile GWU law professor Jonathan Turley, and Georgia State University professor (African-American Studies) Patricia Dixon as advocates of legalizing the practice and suggesting that there are 30,000 to 80,000 polygamous families in the U.S. right now.

While advocates of gay marriage deny that their position leads inexorably to polygamy, it’s remarkable (or perhaps not) how similar the rhetoric is:

Decriminalization of polygamy would bring shared health benefits and other legal privileges of marriage, they say, but the bigger issue is recognition.


"People assume they have the right to look down on us or treat us badly because in a lot of people’s opinions, we’re just bad," Poppa says.


"We’re consenting, nobody was forced," Momma says. "What I want is to be accepted as a wife. I want to be accepted as a family. I don’t want to be looked down upon."

There is, of course, one difference: at least some polygamists argue that their position is biblical.

Discussions - 62 Comments

All of this malarkey about gay marraige and polygamy got out of hand a long time ago. No to the gays and no to the 20-wives crowd! These homosexials and polygamites cant be allowed to hijack our country and our values. I wasn’t kidding before when I said that we need to put them in line. I said that here - LINK

Never forget, folks!

Utterly clueless on how this would affect society. All we have to do is look at Africa to see the pernicious influences of polygamy, and let’s not underestimate the effects on the status of women.

As was widely predicted, once you allow gay marriage then there exists no legitimate reasons to restrict marriage in other ways. It leaves the door wide open...liberals are just soooo stupid sometimes.

Doesn’t polygamy predate gay marriage? And if so, might it not be the other way around, that polygamy, which has enjoyed certain levels of support and tolerance in the U.S., and (certainly more) in many other cultures, has opened the door for gay marriage?

As always, I am intrigued in the hypothesized mechanism by which the acceptance of gay marriage leads to the erosion of good ole’ boy-girl marriage. How does that work?

Easy, Fung. Right now we have an admittedly arbitrary definition of "marriage" rooted in religion and custom (although it can be argued that this custom is socially beneficial and was shaped by millennia of experience). If we decide that such old-fashion stuff must go, what replaces it? Psychology? Leaves the door wide-open for people like you to claim individual rights to makes such practices acceptable and legal.

Dain’s right! I’ve been thinking about turning gay, and the only thing holding me back is the fact that I won’t be able to get married. Alas, I’ll have to marry a chick and make both of us miserable for the rest of our natural lives. But at least the ancient moral order will be preserved!

Well, let’s see. Has Texas fallen apart since the recent fall of the sodomy law? Have straight Texans stopped having straight sex now that gays can be intimate without fear of the Texas Rangers bustin’ down the door? I still don’t see (even after your response, Dain) how accepting gay marriage is the last critical step before all "the old-fashioned stuff must go." It seems to me that straights are doing a pretty good job of threatening the integrity of the institution from "within." Add to that the near-universal need for a two-income family, and sharing "married" status with gays just seems like an infinitely small drop in the bucket. I still haven’t heard word one about how gay marriage threatens straight marriage at all! Someone please explain it to me.

Fung

Your argument concerning lack of casuality is silly. Assuming you are a serious sociologist you ought to know that populations do not instantaneously respond to changes in law, shift in mores, etc. The Declaration of Independence (perhaps its most influential idea being that people must consent to their government) did not produce immediate change. Indeed, in the follow century (1800s) the world saw an increase in governments established without consent (imperalism). There can be no doubt however that the Declaration eventually was a cause (along with war) that lead to people demanding governments established by consent (in at least a loose manner). This idea altered Europe after WW1, and lead to the fall of colonialism in India and Africa after WW2. It took about 150 years for the effects of the cause to be felt.

You have very little data to support any conclusion that legal recognition of homosexuality (established by the Supreme Court in 2003) will not harm society, just as people arguing it will have very little data. You have no factual basis to think you are correct about the matter. You merely use your intuition and prejudices to come to a conclusion that seems valid to you, the same thing the people who think you are wrong are doing.

All of the articles I have read focusing on the matter focus on Scandinavian countries that have allowed homosexual marriage (or the equivalent) for a while. I think that is the only collection of data available, but correct me if I am wrong. I think the argument opposing homosexual marriage goes something like: allowing homosexual marriage reenforces the notion that marriage is not about children. Since a lot of people marry due to children, either having them or wanting them even if they do not love each other, etc. any policy that distances marriage from children will result in less marriage. (Tolstoy also wrote about this in his prologue to War and Peace, he thought marrying for love was stupid and would result in all kinds of problems, marriage was for producing children).

Finally, you morphed Dain’s question from homosexual marriage would allow polygamy to homosexual marriage would destroy opposite-sex marriage. Do you think recognizing homosexual marriage will make it tougher to continue outlawing polygamy? If so, are you ok with polygamy, why or why not?

It seems that every argument against polygamy has been used against homosexuality. Opponents of polygamy claim loving more than one person is unnatural. Or that loving more than one person is not a good environment for rasiing a family. Or that loving more than one person is not traditional western values, etc. I suggest that if you support homosexual marriage you can only come up with arbitrary reasons for opposing polygamy.

I think the push for homosexual marriage occurs for two reasons: Some people want to be accepted and respected, and our legal system (esp family and estate law) is focused on legal relationships between people. There is no doubt that it is very sad when a partner of a homosexual couple dies without a will and that person’s parents or siblings get his property to the exclusion of his partner, but the same argument could rightly be made for polygamy families.

Joe, don’t discount the idea that a fair number of people attempt to use the Bible to support homosexuality. They ignore the Old Testament and try to argue that Jesus would love everyone and all "lifestyles" as somehow supporting the practice.

Steve’s got it right...Fung is good as twisting arguments and using sarcasm to cover his butt, but none of that impresses me. You would think a PSYCHOLOGIST would understand how social approval of moral codes influences future behavior, but apparently not.

As for the tired old "straights" are damaging marriage more than homosexuals, it’s a red herring (like everything else Fund said). If the point is to prevent pernicious social side-effects, then adding gays to the mix is a non-starter --gay marriage won’t help this suffering institution ONE BIT. Moreover, opening the door for other forms of sexual nonsense is a demonstrable harm (I encourage everyone to study how polygamy in Africa has complicated their lives over there).

And the man wonders why I think he’s a cultural and political traitor...geez.

My question is very simple, and not one of you can answer! What is the mechanism, step by step, via which the legal acceptance of gay marriage leads to the downfall of straight marriage? I’ll start it for you. First, we legally recognize gay marriage, then _______, and then, the institution of marriage goes down the tubes.

Please fill in the blank! Maybe there are four steps: cause one, effect one, then effect two, then three, etc....

I am thinking of precedence. First, we allow Hawaii and Alaska to be recognized as states, and then the U.S. will fall apart. No, that didn’t happen. How about this: First, we allow 18 yr olds to vote, and then adults will stop voting. No, that didn’t happen. How about this? First, we legally recognize women as voters, and then men will stop voting??? No, that didn’t happen. How about this?? First, we legally recognize Blacks as valid land-owners, and then Whites will stop owning land. No, that didn’t happen.

What could it be, other than your visceral hatred of gays, and desire to keep them out of the game?

Steve, as for children, you know as well as I do that plenty of straight people get married who (a) don’t plan to have kids, or (b) should never have kids, or (c) plan to adopt. Gays can just as easily fill categories (A) and (c), and category b is not relevant. If you guys have your way regarding Roe v Wade, then there will be plenty of kids who need good homes, and plenty of straight families who should never be able to adopt. Might be good to have a gay couple or two on hand, just in case!

So, what is the answer to my question?

Assuming you are a serious sociologist you ought to know that populations do not instantaneously respond to changes in law, shift in mores, etc. The Declaration of Independence (perhaps its most influential idea being that people must consent to their government) did not produce immediate change. Indeed, in the follow century (1800s) the world saw an increase in governments established without consent (imperalism). There can be no doubt however that the Declaration eventually was a cause (along with war) that lead to people demanding governments established by consent (in at least a loose manner). This idea altered Europe after WW1, and lead to the fall of colonialism in India and Africa after WW2. It took about 150 years for the effects of the cause to be felt.

The problem is that once we’ve broadened our effect period to this extent causation becomes virtually impossible to establish. Few historians see the Declaration of Independence as a primary factor in the decline of colonialism; rather they point to Europe’s bankruptcy and loss of prestige in the wake of the world wars. In looking at a decline in the marriage rate in Scandinavia (and I’m not sure there has been such a thing) there are surely at least a half-dozen possible causes. I should think that the entrance of women into the workforce, and hence their reduced need to marry for security, would be a much more convincing causal factor.

As for polygamy, I guess I don’t have an opinion one way or the other, but I’m immediately skeptical of arguments that blame Africa’s social problems on it. More likely it is Africa’s poverty that leads to polygamy, rather than vice versa. This probably helps to explain why there is no demand for the legalization of polygamy in the United States.

In other words, the predictions of doom that I’ve heard regarding what will happen if gay marriages are recognized remind me of the arguments I’ve heard regarding the likely effects of global warming. If our BS detectors go off in the case of the latter, why don’t they do the same for the former?

By the way, back to the dubious Declaration of Independence - decline of colonialism argument, the partitioning of Africa and much of Asia, creating huge new empires for the European powers, came roughly 100 years after the Declaration. Could we not, then, argue with equal force that the Declaration led to the expansion of colonialism?

What is the mechanism, step by step, via which the legal acceptance of gay marriage leads to the downfall of straight marriage?

This is pretty simple. Marriage has always been defined as one man and one woman by Christian society. The male-female marriage is more than a simple "social contract" because of children. The possibility of procreation changes the relationship, as does the two different halves of human nature uniting. This is marriage.

By changing marriage to include gays, marriage is no longer is about children or about understanding human nature fully. Therefore, gay marriage reduces marriage to a mere social contract entered into for mutual gratification. Obviously a contract based on this is made to be broken. Once marriage loses its natural foundation of fufilling human nature through children and knowledge of the other sex, what is it?

Gay marriage cannot lead to anything greater (like kids and knowledge) except greater pleasure. If marriage is defined this way, its easy to see that marriage would become even more irrelevant than it already is.

This whole "allowing gay marriage means we gotta allow polygamy" argument is rather weak, really. It’s not as if there are millions and millions of sets of women who are hoping against hope that the government finally gives them the right to marry one old Mormon guy. But there ARE millions of gay people who would like to have the same rights that straights have. The primary (and obvious) difference between allowing gays to marry and allowing polygamists to marry is that people are BORN gay and cannot help who they fall in love with, whereas people are raised (or converted) to be Mormons. And then there’s the fact that Mormons will marry off their young teenage daughters to men old enough to be their grandparents.

Of course the wing-nuts will pounce on my argument with their tired, ridiculous insistence that people CHOOSE to be gay.

Step 1 -- gay marriage is fine.

Step 2 -- legal challenges by "People for 8-Way Procreation" to broaden marriage to include any legal bond between consenting adults

Step 3 -- Marriage becomes a simple social contract between consenting adults. The courts become filled with bizarre divorce and custody battles

Step 4 -- Business and insurance companies are forced to rewrite their health care and life insurance policies because of expanding coverage due to complex marriage systems.

Step 5 -- Complexities of the tax code eradicate joint filing...individualism reigns.

Step 6 -- Marriage becomes something people "do" out of insecurity...it begins to wane, and with it the fertility rate drops even more. Those that are born find themselves in either single-parent families or serial-parent situations (tell us about the psychology of that, Fung).

Step 7 -- Western civilization collapses. Nuclear holocaust...mutant, armor-plated roaches learn to stand upright, take over the world. Man is no more.

JOHN -- read MORE SLOWLY. I didn’t say all of Africa’s problems come from polygamy. I said it’s problematic -- I bet you don’t let your students get away with such sloppy comprehension!

As for causality, I guess you don’t know anything about event history analysis, time-series analysis, or any of the other techniques that allow "social scientists" to tease out causation from complex events? Geez, get a clue.

Clint!

"By changing marriage to include gays, marriage is no longer is about children or about understanding human nature fully."

But, marriage is not always about children. First, many marriages never result in children, by accident and by design. Second, marriages ideally continue after the children have grown and left home. Third, gays can adopt, and raise kids in a family just as straights can. Fourth, if MY marriage is about children, then the gay marriage down the street affects MY marriage not one bit!

As for the part about understanding human nature fully, I have no idea what that refers to.

"Therefore, gay marriage reduces marriage to a mere social contract entered into for mutual gratification"

If all people want is mutual gratification, they can live together, as straights can, without the responsibilities and benefits of marriage. But, if people want their union and committment to be witnessed, and blessed, and recognized by the state, then they need and deserve to marry.

Phil, marriage is a social institution, not a private institution. It was created to 1) regulate sexual relations between the genders, 2) bind a social unit responsible for creating the next generation, and 3) intergenerational channeling of wealth, knowledge, etc. These things are SO MUCH MORE IMPORTANT than the marginal happiness of a few hundred thousand deviants (yes, I did say that, didn’t I?). Millions? Naw, many wouldn’t get marriage, particularly homosexuals.

And Fung, before you jump all over me and call me a bigot, etc., please tell me what is biologically, socially, or even personally logical about homosexual behavior. Yea, that’s right, justify its existence...why shouldn’t we treat it like any other physical disorder (because that’s what it is).

And Phil, explain to me how homosexuality can be "natural." Even if you buy the BS that "uncles" were valuable in the past, the differential procreation of homosexuals should have bred them out of our population a LONG TIME AGO. That’s how evolution works, folks...traits that lead to lower reproduction die out.

OK, you fellas are on...let’s hear it.

But every single guy on here would go gay if only he could live with himself after the fact. Yes my friends if you could shed your societal and religious inhibitions and just follow your instincts, you would find yourself embracing another man from time to time. We all of us want to connect with others, man or woman. This means all of you: Steve, John, Dain, Fung, Phil, Clint, Tony, everyone. I know you will all deny it, but you each have the capacity to know another man- you’ll just never realize it. My point is this: you’re all talking as if "gays" were some "other." But there is no gay or straight- there’s just those of us who are willing to try what feels natural!

And as for this last poster, he’s probably gay...they desperately want to feel like they are normal and natural, so they accuse us of "homophobia" and "closet homosexual tendencies," etc. Well, I’ve never felt anything like that, and I’m not "afraid" of gays (actually they tend to be more sociable and less threatening than my fellow heteros). I just think their orientation is odd, counterproductive, and ultimately self-defeating.

Dain, read more carefully, friend! I said that there is no gay or straight. So in that sense, I cannot be gay and neither can you! But we both have the desire to be with other men, only apparently you fail to acknowledge these deep-rooted feelings. I’m sure there is some man in your life with whom you would enjoy having an intimate relationship. Think about it, and deep down you will know that I am right!

Fung:

You are right of course that children is not the only definition of marriage. Hence the human nature thing. It’s this: humans are two distinct genders. Both genders operate in the world differently. They are both human, but men and women have fundamental differences. Marriage between man and woman is partly about learning these things and fully understanding humans. To fully understand humans you need to know both.

With this understanding of marriage, it serves a higher good. While gay marriage appears more lasting that just "mutual gratification," what is the base for it? Why do they want these blessings and recognitions? I believe it is to gratify themselves. Society blessing something does not mean that it is a good cause or end. Marriage is not good because of society’s laws, nor is it arbitrary as someone said earlier. It must be defined by something natural, or else I would totally agree with you.

Sorry for the children thing, its just a piece I had to mention. Does this explain my nature claim better?

Why a man would want more than one wife is beyond me. Think of the nagging!

Regarding gay marriage - homosexuals have the same marital rights that heterosexuals have: Marry someone of the opposite gender.

Dain Bramaged said:

"Step 7 -- Western civilization collapses. Nuclear holocaust...mutant, armor-plated roaches learn to stand upright, take over the world. Man is no more."

And why should any of this concern you, Dain? You’d be upright at last, ruling the world, and have some cool armor plating to boot!

Dain, if being gay is a choice made by deviants, then what do we do with these two naughty penguins?
(Before you go penguin hunting in Central Park, I heard they went straight again- probably due to the helpful intervention of a friendly pastor!)

I am only using this evidence to suggest that homosexuality is not a choice, leaving aside the whole morality issue. If it’s true for bonobos, why can’t it be true for people? From the linked article: "Bonobos, apes closely related to humans, are wildly energetic sexually. Studies show that whether observed in the wild or in captivity, nearly all are bisexual and nearly half their sexual interactions are with the same sex. Females have been observed to engage in homosexual activity almost hourly."

The question of whether one has a choice in being homosexual is a red herring. Any child molester will tell you that he didn’t choose to want to have sex with children, but that doesn’t mean we condone the molestation of children. We cannot choose what we are inclined to do, but we CAN choose whether or not to act on our inclinations.

please tell me what is biologically, socially, or even personally logical about homosexual behavior. Yea, that’s right, justify its existence...why shouldn’t we treat it like any other physical disorder

Please tell me what is biologically, socially, or even personally logical about preferring chocolate ice cream to vanilla, murder mysteries to science fiction, Mozart to Grand Funk Railroad, etc., etc., etc.

But according to the law, children CANNOT choose to have sex, whereas two adults CAN. No one is hurt by a person choosing to eat chocolate ice cream or listen to Mozart or have gay sex, but a kid being molested is clearly damaged. So I’m not sure what your point is.

My point is that the acceptability of homosexuality (or anything else) is a function not of whether or not there is a natural inclination toward it, but rather whether or not it inflicts a harm on someone else. I am agreeing with your conclusion that its okay to engage in homosexual activity (with consent, of course), but am disagreeing with the argument that you use to reach that conclusion.

Actually, I didn’t read Phil’s argument as being that homosexuality was necessarily acceptable because it was natural for some people, simply that - counter to Dain’s inference in comment 17 - it is natural in many species, including homo sapiens. I didn’t think he even implied that homosexuality should be accepted because they have no choice. The difference between pedophilia and homosexuality is as great as the difference between pedophilia and heterosexuality.

The difference between pedophilia and homosexuality is as great as the difference between pedophilia and heterosexuality.

Oh, the lengths I’ll go to to avoid grading student papers! I agree with this statement, but it has nothing to do with either of them being "natural"--which is a term that is utterly devoid of moral significance. Lots of harmful things are natural, and lots of wonderful things (i.e., civilization) are wholly artificial.

Erica is right. I’m just bothered by the belief that millions of people throughout history and in all cultures have all CHOSEN to be gay just to what, rebel? To bother people like Dain?

I agree with this statement, but it has nothing to do with either of them being "natural"

I know!! I guess I should have put that sentence out on its own, since it wasn’t actually connected with what I said before it. I was merely responding to your bringing up child molesters in comment 25.

Dain said - "And Fung, before you jump all over me and call me a bigot, etc., please tell me what is biologically, socially, or even personally logical about homosexual behavior. Yea, that’s right, justify its existence...why shouldn’t we treat it like any other physical disorder (because that’s what it is)"

Firstly, I presume you meant to say psychological disorder. You don’t mean that it’s a physical disorder like cleft palate or muscular dystrophy, do you?

Secondly, it looks like you were justified in your white man’s persecution complex, as the zany psychologists do appear to have you in their crosshairs. Maybe eventually you will get the help you need!

There are lots of desires that people have "naturally" but that does not make them moral or right.

The animal behaviors you people point to are not homosexuality, they simply represent the use of sex as a social tool. Strictly speaking, there are no animals (other than Man) who engage in exclusive homosexual pair-bonds. The bonobos don’t due it, the penguins don’t do it, no species does it except Homo Sapiens Sapiens, and then only a tiny minority.

You folks will have to do a lot better than that! Also, I notice none of you have defended this in social terms. Even if homosexuality were natural, that doesn’t mean it would be socially desirable. Aggression is natural, but society strictly controls it. Pair-bonds are also natural, and again society strictly controls them. What of it?

Also, I do not agree with John (imagine that!) on the harmlessness of homosexuality. I think it is harmful on both the personal and social levels...instead of celebrating it we should be working to cure it (or discourage it, etc.).

Phil,

Mormons excommunicate polygamists. They have done so since 1890. In fact, many polygamists complain that the only people who actively oppose them in anyway, shape, or form are the Mormons because the church will excommunicate any member it finds practicing polygamy.

There are many polygamists that call themselves "Fundemental Mormons" because at one time the church supported the practice. That makes as much sense as someone owning slaves in this country calling themselves "Fundemental Americans" because at one time the constitution supported the practice.

But you knew that, right?

"As for causality, I guess you don’t know anything about event history analysis, time-series analysis, or any of the other techniques that allow "social scientists" to tease out causation from complex events? Geez, get a clue."


Dain: how much do you know about time series? Or are you just spouting off as usual?

Of course these sick folks use the same rhetoric as the gays. They play out of the same playbook. I cant figure out why they have the vandetta against the majority of good, normal Americans. I am not a theologist but I know of nothing in the Bible that actually approves of polygamy. Not the Bible that I read anyway! I would also like to get an explanation from some liberal here why so many people who have left the gay and polygamy lifestyles behind now feel so ashamed and denounce their old ways. I think its because they know that it is completely wrong.

A personal question, HDT? I don’t answer them...what do YOU know about statistical analysis? As for "spouting off as usual," when did I do that? I don’t think anything I’ve ever said on these threads has been overturned or even effectively countered.

Mack, the Bible quite openly approves of polygyny (more than one wife), but certainly no other form of polygamy (the Bible is a Middle Eastern book, after all). Monogamy is clearly the preference of the New Testament, or even not to marry at all (Paul thought the end-times were upon them, so why marry?). Ultimately our resistence to gay marriage shouldn’t rest on religion, but on the nature of marriage as a social contract and the deeply flawed notion that homosexuality is ’OK’. It isn’t, and marriage is a privileged status granted to people for a specific set of purposes, none of which have anything to do with gratification or fulfillment.

"...marriage is a privileged status granted to people for a specific set of purposes, none of which have anything to do with gratification or fulfillment."

Oh Dain! With ideas (lines?) like that, I bet the women just fall at your feet en masse. How charming, how ROMANTIC! Did you sweep your wife away with talk like that?

Eric, bugger off. No personal questions.

Dain,


Marriage has nothing to do with fulfillment in the Bible? Would you care to elaborate on that. I think many would disagree.

Wow, crazy thread! Fun, fun, fun! As usual, the most asinine comments come from...Dain! I liked this one in comment #4:

"Leaves the door wide-open for people like you to claim individual rights to makes [sic] such practices acceptable and legal."

Apparently, Dain is unaware that in the realm of POPular academics, the concept of "individual rights" has been pretty thoroughly co-opted by conservatives, conservative libertarians and Objectivists. And since we are supposed to look at individual rights as synonymous with that most democratic and perfect economic system, I would interpret any negative attitudes towards "individual rights" as possibly Communist in nature - a dangerous threat to freedom!

I would like to hear some clear reasoning from Dain as to why homosexuality isn’t "ok." Haven’t seen any thus far. Surely you folks have heard about the laughable outcomes of those "Exodus" groups that try to give a Christian helping hand to gays to escape their evil lifestyle. The top executives (of the same sex!) fell in love and skipped town!

MarK, but WHY do Mormons make such a big deal about polygamy? Because they’re so opposed to it on moral grounds? Or because they were FORCED to denounce it? It’s all PR. If there were a reversal of the law, do you really think that the official Mormon church would continue to oppose polygamy?

And since you seem to know so much, you should know full well that it was never as fundamentally American to own a slave as it was fundamentally Mormon to practice polygamy. Even most Southerners didn’t own slaves, but Joseph Smith, the FOUNDER of the Mormon religion, insisted that polygamy was just and called for by God.

You are conflating conservativism with Libertarian/Objectivism. They aren’t the same animal. Conservatives believe that, since the "crooked timber of humanity" requires strong institutions to government behavior (thereby making social life livable), individual rights must be balanced against social needs. Although we tend to see the free market as the best counterweight to overweening governmental power, occasionally we slam economic actors for greed, etc.

Most of us see gay marriage as 1) unnecessary, and 2) potentially harmful to the social institution of marriage. As for why homosexuality isn’t ’OK’, where to start? Clearly our biological equipment wasn’t designed for that, and promiscuity (and concomitant diseases)clearly have a social price. I also suspect that open homosexuality breeds an openness and tolerance of sexual practices that is not healthy.

Forgive the numerous typos and grammatical errors in the above...too hurried, I’m afraid.

Someday it would be nice to meet a multiculturalist Leftoid who didn’t resort to sarcasm and childish mockery in lieu of thoughtful commentary. I’m done here.

Hey Dain, just for the record, that wasn’t me. Yes, you irritate me (and others, I’m sure) greatly, but I gotta say that was WAY beyond the pale. Completely out of line, inappropriate, wrong, etc.

Right Dain, like ALL liberals resort to that kind of thing. And like you’ve never posted with my name. Yes, the comment was out of line, but I think most of us were having a pretty calm, mature debate.

It wasn’t me, either. I have my fun calling you Dain Bramaged, sure, but I certainly don’t even wanna hypothesize about your love life.

Anyway, Dain, I clearly did not conflate those different variants of conservatism. I pointed them out as three different right-of-center philosophies that have appropriated the phrase "individual rights" as their own.

In any case you said that "the ’crooked timber of humanity’ requires strong institutions to government [I presume you meant ’govern’ here] behavior (thereby making social life livable)." If you really look at marriage with such an emphasis on control, then why not herd the gays into this institution as well?

And your notion that "our biological equipment wasn’t designed for that" - well, I hate to break it to you, but there are plenty of straight people who engage in all of the same bedroom practices that gays do (in other words, what the Bible calls "sodomy"). Should these straight people be banned from marriage?

The comment by "Dain’s Wife" was deleted for its crudeness. I know Dain is no angel, but let’s keep things PG here.


Ben Kunkel

Ashbrook Center

Jeez! Look what happens when I leave you people unsupervised for a couple of days!

I am very sorry to have missed so much of the conversation. It is exam week, around here.

I am sorry that Dain has left. It is ironic to note (in Craig’s post #32) that psychologists are debating a change in the DSM that would effectively result in Dain’s earning a legitimate diagnosis, while homosexuality was removed from the DSM in 1980.

For the record, there is a HUGE difference between prejudice and "pathological" prejudice, and I seriously doubt that we will ever see such a diagnosis in the DSM. Still, I thought it was worth a quick nod!

Well Fung they may of taken it out of your little Quack dictionary but most of us know that homosexultiy is still a sickness , meaning, if your gay than your very sick indeed and need help. Not to say that I hate the Gays because I don’t. I hate the sin and not the sinner but that doesnt make it any less of a sin. So where do we go from their? Well we treat it like we would any other illneses be it cancer or lukemia.

And on another note I hope that Dain is not meaning that he is gone for good because he put up a very good fight against you all and had a lot of good things to say. I didn’t see the comment that got deleted but it sounds like that was a good thing. Lets try to not to use profanities on this site please.

Okay, Fat Mike -- Please educate us....

Since it is a sickness, what have you done to avoid catching it? What can the rest of us do? How is it cured?

What other diseases are there whose sufferers don’t want to be cured? Or where the sufferers are not restricted in their ability to participate fully in any activity that "healthy" people can participate in?

Speaking of dictionaries, why don’t you spend some time with one, and learn how to spell, and to put a sentence together?

I don’t hate the ignorant, just the ignorance.

Well big shot I didn’t have the oppurtunity to go to college like many of you but that doesn’t mean I’m dont’ have the right to my opinion. Alls I know is being gay is not something you reward people for and incourage them by letting them get married and God knows what else. I don’t know how you catch the sickness but I do know that noone I know has ever caught it. Seems to be a problem on college campus and big Cities but not in my town. HMM, well now I wonder why that is?

It’s something they put in the water, Fat Mike. I don’t know who’s behind it, exactly, but I have a pretty good hunch that the neocons are involved. They want us all to be gay and pro-Israel. Watch the Zapruder film if you don’t believe me.

A disease that people don’t want to be cured of? Hmm...mentally ill people often refuse to take medication, I’ve heard. They think they are fine. I’ve also heard of movements by fat folks, deaf folks, and blind folks to make society recognize them as "normal," even though we all know they aren’t. To my way of thinking, people stuck with lemons make lemonade, but that’s no reason to fool ourselves about their situation.

I take it back. I do hate the ignorant.

Self-hatred is a trait of people such as yourself, Mr. Fung. I don’t find that surprising in the least.

Thin Mike you maybe on my side but youl’l need to get a differant monoker, freind. Fat MIke is the name I was called back in my highschool football days because noone could get around me. I just think you using a name so similer to mine is confusing to the other readers. Thanks.

I’m off to look for Dain.

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