October 27, 2011

Discriminating Discrimination

Hatched by Dafydd

Shocking everyone, Democrats in the Senate have launched a campaign to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, DOMA; this is the federal law that (section 3) defines marriage for federal purposes as only being between one man and one woman, and (section 2) -- most important -- allows states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriage (SSM), even when the couple is legally married in some other state.

Without section 2, the distinction between states that do and do not recognize SSM would be utterly lost, as any two persons of the same sex could marry in an SSM state, then demand that every other state in the United States recognize the union as the same as traditional marriage. We would lose a huge chunk of Federalism, as states could no longer define marriage as the citizens of that state decide; it would all be decided by Washington D.C.

So you can follow along on your scorecard, here is the complete law; well, the definitional part, that is:

Section 2. Powers reserved to the states

No State, territory, or possession of the United States, or Indian tribe, shall be required to give effect to any public act, record, or judicial proceeding of any other State, territory, possession, or tribe respecting a relationship between persons of the same sex that is treated as a marriage under the laws of such other State, territory, possession, or tribe, or a right or claim arising from such relationship.

Section 3. Definition of marriage

In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the word 'marriage' means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word 'spouse' refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.

By seeking to repeal DOMA, Senate Democrats signal the full and complete capitulation to the most radical of gay-"rights" leaders: They would rather destroy legal marriage itself, the very fabric of Western culture, than tolerate traditional marriage in any of the 57 50 states.

But that's not what I want to talk about. Yes, you read right; the entire post to this point has been nothing but preamble. Here is the part to which I intend to draw your intention... this quotation from the Washington Times story on the hoped-for death of DOMA:

The issue is bound to face strong opposition from Republicans, who would likely have the votes to filibuster the legislation should it reach the Senate floor. And it’s unlikely to make it to the GOP-controlled House at all.

But the measure comes at a time when gay and lesbian advocates are on a roll, having won repeal of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in Congress late last year.

I am appalled that even a somewhat more conservative newspaper has been sucked into the fantasy of a "gay movement," as if sexual orientation is a supercategory the gulps up everything even superficially related to homosexuality. But more properly, a veritable Valles Marineris gapes between, on the one hand, the demand for the end of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) and the overturning (by the Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas) of laws against "sodomy," however defined; and on the other hand, the shrill insistance upon federal legislation accepting and promoting SSM.

It's vital that America discriminate between the two species of demand:

  1. Whether you agree or disagree with Lawrence -- which held that anti-sodomy laws violated "privacy rights" -- or with allowing gays to serve openly in the military, these claims are based upon the liberty argument: that people have a fundamental core of individual integrity, which cannot be subdivided, and inside of which governments cannot legislate.
  2. Similarly, a law (federal or state) mandating vegetarianism would be an egregious violation of fundamental individual liberty, as would a law forbidding self defense or defense of one's family (or of any innocent person, for that matter).

Lawrence should have been based upon the First Amendment's freedom of assembly, rather than the amorphous and ill-defined (but trendy!) "right of privacy"; and the repeal of DADT should have been based upon the unenumerated but self-evident right of every citizen and legal resident to defend his country, society, and culture; it's a simple extension of the fundamental right of self defense.

  1. Contrariwise, a demand for legal recognition of SSM (same-sex marriage) cannot be based upon simple liberty; for it entails not simply the right to be let alone, to be allowed to be oneself, but the demand that the rest of society embrace one's actions and declarations.

It's not that gays want the right to live together, to consider themselves married, or even to be declared married in the eyes of God, according to a particular church; for they already have those rights (and I completely support them). Rather, they demand not merely that you allow them to pursue their own happiness, but that you agree with and support their lifestyle... and that you consent to equate an outré sexual relationship with the traditional Western and American relationship called marriage.

(Not merely outré but antithetical to what I consider the main point of traditional, even more axiomatic than the raising of children: the union of the female and male elements of humanity, the yin and yang. Opposite-sex marriage serves to moderate the extremes of both sexes, producing a stable and fruitful (in several senses) society. By contrast, SSM tends to exaggerate the bad tendencies of both sexes, leading to extremism and even fanaticism.)

Enforced SSM sails directly athwart the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of religion, speech, and association: If we're forced to equate same-sex couples with opposite-sex couples for purposes of marriage -- speaking of them as married, suppressing any religious-based criticism, and compelled to let them live together as if married, even in a room I might rent out within my own house -- then dissent from liberal orthodoxy is criminal, upon penalty of prosecution or administrative punishment.

Thus conservatives (I am not one) fall into grave error when they accept the idea that there is a "gay agenda," defined as the collection of all laws or policies that most homosexuals and many libertine liberals want to enact. Discrimination in this case is vital, and the real divide is between liberty interests (allowing the individual to live his life as he sees fit) and social reprogramming -- forcing society to transmogrify from the traditional American Borg culture into a limp, squishy, bowl of moral pablum, where all that matters is feeding the maw of every special-interest group temporarily important to the ruling class.

It's easy to draw the line between freedom of association and the right to defend oneself, one's loved ones, and one's society on the one hand, and the peremptory demand that all of us espouse the absurdity that same-sex relationships are identical to opposite-sex relationships.

It's like legally declaring cows to be vegetables, just so that everyone can be called a vegetarian.

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, October 27, 2011, at the time of 4:19 AM

Comments

The following hissed in response by: mdgiles

Wait! You're just noticing this is where the "gay agenda" was headed all along? Remember all those learned articles making light of conservative worries about a "slippery slope"? There was an actress (Beatrice Campbell?) who described morality in the 19th century. She said: "My dear, I don't care what they do, so long as they don't do it in the street and scare the horses". Well we've now reached the point where people not only demand the right to "do it in the street", but they also demand that the rest of us be forced to stand on the sidewalk and applaud.

The above hissed in response by: mdgiles [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 27, 2011 10:44 AM

The following hissed in response by: Bart Johnson

I consider it axiomatic that when someone says, "It's not about the money!" that, in fact, it is precisely about the money.
DADT was still shaking from its death throes when someone applied for spousal quarters, health care, and a multitude of other considerations associated with a marriage in the military.
The list of the "bennies" is rather longer than you might imagine. I would never be so crass as to think that pecuniary factors would ever be involved in such a loving, principled arrangement, but one should follow the evidence...

The above hissed in response by: Bart Johnson [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 30, 2011 7:27 PM

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