Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Gay Marriage

Governor Schwarzenegger has finally denounced the Mayor of San Francisco for breaking the laws of California by encouraging and allowing "gay marriage." It is amazing to me that the Liberal-Left will do anything to get its way, including breaking ancient laws. They hope that then this issue will go into the courts, which they think they can dominate, and thereby quickly not go into a national dialogue on this important question. Now we have Mayor Richard Daley asserting that there is nothing wrong with gay marriage. I take this as an especially ill omen for Daley is an ordinary Democratic politico and he is not Mayor of San Francisco, but of Chicago. Add to this court decisions from Massachusetts and Vermont and unlawful actions of those who are supposed to uphold laws in New Mexico, and one is compelled to ask, what is going on here?

To make things worse, conservatives are all over the map on this one (see this Lee Bockhorn piece from July of 2003, wherein he mentions some of the tensions already developing). Conservatives seem cowed by this issue. I think they are wrong to be. The argument in favor of gay marriage is one that--in the end--is based on nothing but will and interest and the inability and unwilligness to make a distinction between a male and a female, the two kinds of human beings, and what their comingled life has to do with human happiness and excellence. This is the way the Left gets its way: It demands that everyone else not only allow them to do what they want (we do; no one argues that homosexuals ought to be put in jail, etc.), but they also demand that we approve of their actions by asserting either that their actions and demands are right and moral, or that there cannot be any distinctions between right and wrong, and therefore those who disagree with such actions have no right to make an argument on behalf of their position. However,--and this is not a small point to make--it is up to those who want to change the laws and habits that have been settled for thousands of years to make an argument against those laws and habits, rather than demand that we--who have upheld those laws and habits for millenia--first make an argument to uphold them. They have to persuade us. Because they cannot persuade us (it would seem) they resort to breaking the laws, and try to force the issue into the courts. If they are successful in this policy (as they appear to be already), then we will have no alternative but to work on behalf of a constitutional amendment which would define marriage (and I am not yet persuaded that that is the direction we should go). What I am persuaded of for now is that my side had better demand that the other side argue in favor of this great change in our public life and then vigorously argue against a change in policy and law. So far, those who want to change our understanding of marriage are just making demands, as if they are in a superior moral position. This will not do. This is not how a democratic-republic functions.

If everything will be resolved in the courts--and by no means can we assert that those rulings will have a happy outcome--the voice of the American people will be unheard. There will be grave consequences to this silence. Here is a chapter from Bill Bennett’s The Broken Hearth on homosexual unions. It is long, but very much worth considering. No doubt, there will be more on this later, when I am calmer.

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