Gayety united in marriage push

There was a recent discussion on Signposts02 about whether the homosexual lobbyists had an agenda. It was generally suggested by the liberal voices that they did not.

This, of course would mean that their decision making processes are random an uncoordinated, which isn’t really borne out by the evidence.

The lobbyists are, in fact, very well organised in a defined collaboration. As God once said about men who had a will opposed to His own, ‘since they are unified, there is nothing they may not accomplish’, and this is true of gay and lesbian activism for at least the last two or three decades, as pointed out by Kevin Donnelly in an article in the ABC’s Drum Opinion pages, which I reproduce in full for your commentary:

Kevin Donnelly

Marriage equality: secrets behind a successful campaign.
Kevin Donnelly

Dennis Altman, in a comment piece for yesterday’s The Age in response to the ALP conference’s decision on gay marriage writes:

“The campaign for marriage equality, largely run by younger women and men, not all of them gay, is one of the most successful examples of effective lobbying in Australia over the past few decades.”

Altman is correct. The questions social conservatives need to ask, though, are why has the cultural-left been so successful in shaping the public debate and why have we reached a stage where many expect that the Australian Parliament, in the near future, will radically redefine the definition of marriage?

One of the key strategies used by the left in the culture wars is to take a medium to long-term view and to embark on what the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci describes as the long march through the institutions. Beginning in the late ’60s and early ’70s, institutions like schools and universities, churches, government bureaucracies, political organisations and media outlets were targeted as key sites in the battle of ideology and ideas.

One only needs to look at universities, in Australia and the US, where the majority of academics describe themselves as left-of-centre and most journalists and reporters are happy to espouse politically correct causes to realise how successful the left has been.

A second strategy employed by the cultural-left is to define once-accepted practices and ideas as obsolete, socially unjust, inequitable and ripe for change.

Radical feminists argue that traditional forms of marriage institutionalise rape, education is defined as an instrument used by the ruling class to exploit and marginalise the dispossessed, Christianity is described as irrational and based on superstition and Western civilisation is attacked for being exploitive, eurocentric and elitist.

As noted by George Orwell, language is a powerful weapon in the battle of ideas and it is here that the cultural-left has also been successful. Whereas the ability to discriminate was once considered a worthy attribute, to be guilty of discrimination is now a crime. To be conservative, on the basis that there are some things from the past that are worthwhile holding on to, is to be old-fashioned, out of touch and guilty of continuing past injustices.

Those critical of feminism are labelled as misogynist, those who view gay/lesbian practices as unacceptable are condemned as homophobic and anyone championing the traditional form of marriage based on heterosexuality is guilty of discrimination and failing to respect the rights of others. It’s no accident that homosexuals and lesbians have co-opted the word gay to describe what many consider an unnatural lifestyle.

Gender politics provides a compelling example of how the cultural-left has managed to win the culture wars and radically redefine once accepted practices and social mores. In relation to gays and lesbians, even though one Australian survey suggested that only 1.6 per cent of men and 0.8 per cent of women identify as gay/lesbian, activists have been successful in presenting such relationships as increasingly widespread and normal.

Since the late ’80s and early ’90s groups like the Australian Education Union (AEU) and the Australian Association for the Teachers of English (AATE) have ensured that the nation’s classroom and the school curriculum enforce a cultural-left view of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) issues.

The AEU’s policy is that lessons about GLBT life-styles and issues must be “positive in its approach” and that the “sexual orientation and/or gender-preferred identity of individual teachers should not be a factor in determining which teachers are able to teach sex, health or human biology education”.

At AATE conferences and in journals over the years English teachers have been told that they should help children recognise the “various ways in which gender categories are tied to an oppressive binary structure for organising the social and cultural practices of adolescent boys and girls”, use the classroom to explore “alternative versions of masculinity” and “recognise that gender is a social construction organised upon unequal power relations which define and limit opportunities”.

Such has been the cultural-left’s success in relation to gender issues that the so-called Melbourne Declaration, the blue print for Australian school education, argues that all school sectors, faith based, independent and government, must provide an education free of discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation.

A strict interpretation of the Melbourne Declaration is that religious schools will lose the freedom they currently have to discriminate in relation to who they enrol and who they employ. One also expects that the proposed national curriculum, in areas like health, will enforce a positive view of GLBT issues.

Currently, school programs like Victoria’s ‘Supporting Sexual Diversity in Schools’ and the NSW ‘Proud Schools’ are being funded to fight against homophobia and transphobia on the basis that children must be taught to celebrate diversity and difference and that all forms of sexual identity must be equally valued.

To return to last weekend’s ALP conference. The battle over the meaning of the word marriage provides a good example of Orwell’s belief that how we use language defines who and what we are and the type of society we live in. The Shorter Oxford dictionary defines marriage as firstly, “The relation between married persons; wedlock” and, secondly, “The action, or an act, of marrying; the ceremony by which two persons are made husband and wife”.

Even though it is increasingly common for homosexuals and lesbians to have the right to a civil union, thus, having the same rights as married people, such is not enough. By changing the definition of marriage activists not only want to radically redefine the meaning of the word so that it becomes unrecognisable – which raises the problem that if marriage is now to include gays and lesbians, what right do we have to exclude bisexual and transgender people?

Homosexual and lesbian activists are also seeking to gain the same type of respect and acceptance reserved for marriages involving heterosexual couples, something, by definition, that they currently lack.

Dr Kevin Donnelly is Director of Melbourne-based Education Standards Institute.

(‘Signpostsfree’ is a name Steve blogged under for a short time after Lance spat the dummy and kicked him off the roll.)


82 thoughts on “Gayety united in marriage push

  1. Of course they have an agenda and they will proactively shove it up your arse without your consent.

    And when the Church objects – they cry for separation of Church and State and tell the Church and it’s God-botherers to keep their nose out.

    …and when they get what they want – legalised Gay marraige …. they will cry foul when the Chucrh refuses to marry them and will take the Church to the State-run courts on grounds of discrimination.

  2. Um that hasn’t happened anywhere. Churches are able to decide who they will and won’t marry. Usually these decisions are based on church attendance but also some churches won’t marry divorcees, and most have strict guidelines about marriage ceremonies.

    Can you give an instance where churches have been made to marry someone?

  3. It probably wouldn’t happen the same way, Bones, since divorce and remarriage is a separate issue to gay marriage.

    It would only take, as someone has suggested elsewhere, for a minister to refuse to marry a gay couple who want to be married in the church he oversees, and for them to then press for discrimination. If you think this won’t ever happen, you are being naive.

    Another slither on the slippery slope will be poly marriage, where three or more people want to be legally married. There is already a movement towards this.

    On the issue of slippery slopes, I can remember the arguments for abortion being so logical where the welfare of the mother was a concern, and the grave assurances that it would never progress from there, but clearly it has. It is now said that it is the choice of the woman, regardless of her physical welfare being fatally threatened, and also said, especially by feminists, that no one else should have a say about ‘their’ bodies but women. So what about the new body in the uterus on the way? When could they have a say? Who can speak for them? Only women? Only the woman carrying? So, it is now said, that is not actually a human in there. Just a few cells, and therefore expendable! Slippery slope all the way down to no accountability and outcry if anyone asks for it.

    So slippery slope will happen. All the reason and the logic being expounded and the assurances have been given before over various issues. But they always go further, because that is the nature of humanity.

    Without a vision – a set of structured, well thought out values – the people – individuals making up a pluralist society – perish.

  4. I dont think there is any evidence here of a coordinated agenda by homosexual activists.

    What he has shown is that there is generally a left- progressive bias in the education, social and possibly media and government sectors. And this tendency has been borne out as a general movement that accepts homosexuals as equal and permanent members of society.

    Beyond that, everyone has an agenda to seek and pursue their natural rights as they see them, as members of a secular western democracy.

    Donnelly says that Unis, Government and media organisations have been dominated by left ideas. Well, perhaps they are the most well-thought out ideas. If you dont think so, the best action is to put your own ideas into the marketplace, not complain about it. These ideas havent been imposed by any force.

    He also says a strategy used by the left is to define once-accepted practices as out of date or ripe for change. Well Duh! Thats why they are called Progressives, they argue for progress. If they didnt do that they would be called Conservatives or young liberals.

    Slippery slope arguments can be used against any form of change. They are essentially undebateable, because there is no evidence either way for their validity.

  5. So have Christian schools been made to employ homosexuals.

    Have churches been made to employ gay ministers?

    I know at the Christian school I worked at, the previous pastor was shown the door for marrying gays in secret. Nothing was ever made of it. Big secret, hush, hush.

  6. Steve, aren’t you using a totally different topic to justify the supposed gay agenda?

    Isn’t that what you accused the liberals of doing with suicide/hats/slavery?

  7. I think the unvoiced subtext is:

    “The gays have an agenda ! [ to turn us all gay ]

    I’ve seen a few comments previously about the gays shoving their agenda down our throats, now LF says they want to shove it up our arses without our consent.

  8. I don’t think anyone is suggesting that a “gay agenda” is to turn us all gay.

    If there is an agenda, it is to make any and every life-style choice an acceptable one. To do this, they want the ‘church’ to accept and perform gay marriage.

    I am not saying I agree with this. I think that it is a logical progression for demolishing perceived discrimination.

    “The church accepts us now … so why don’t you?”

    So I can almost guarentee that some test case in the UK and in Australia will be brought. It is irrelevant if the ‘church’ has a get out clause enshrined in law. It is still discrimination.

    So church will be in the dock on equality laws.

    simple as

    I don’t think that the majority of the pro-gay lobby really want that but will end up supporting the more militant lobbyists.

    Shalom

  9. I don’t see anywhere where it’s suggested that the gay agenda is for everyone to become gay! What would be the outcome of that?

    It would solve the population explosion, granted, and end the human race long before the perceived climate change threat, but other than that, what would gays gain from it, because, surely, if, as gays contrive, being homosexual or lesbian is not a matter of choice but of birth, then how could they argue that all must become homosexual since it is clearly not choice but birth that makes a person heterosexual, and so the all the heterosexuals would have to campaign for equality.

    But what is equal in terms of at least 95% of the population being heterosexual, and less than 5% homosexual or lesbian? That is not an equal ratio at all.

    The vast majority of the population is heterosexual, and marriage has always been seen as the natural outcome of a relationship between a male and female who would like to live the rest of their lives together and produce offspring.

    Marriage has had different forms, mainly in the area of ceremony, or in some cultures polygamous or monogamous, but never, except in some very vague circumstances (which I’m sure Bones will come up with), as homosexual or lesbian, because almost all cultures acknowledge the importance of a marital arrangement of some kind between a male and a female who are in a lasting relationship and want to produce children.

    I realise that there s more to marriage and relationships than this, and someone will bring up the various minor digressions from these facts, which always exist, but in terms of equality and what is seen as the majority of cases, marriage is and has ben between a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, which has been the finding of he Australian court and then legislated for, and agreed to by the majority of the population.

    It is only the chorus of the very minority gay and lesbian lobby which has forced their agenda into the media, int the courts and into the legislative assemblies of our nation.

    That, wazza2, without doubt is an agenda. To say anything else, or to deny it is completely naive at best, and blatantly ignorant at worse.

    First you say there is no agenda, than you admit that everyone has an agenda, which is something I said three posts and about twenty comments ago.

    Since everyone has an agenda, you can then say hat the homosexual agenda is a particularly strong one, and, considering the marriage ‘equality’ push derailed the Labor Party Conference in Australia last week, when there are far more pressing needs, is testimony enough to the how organised and singular the gay lobbyists are.

  10. Bones, I used the abortion analogy to illustrate how slippery slopes operate, so it was perfectly applicable.

    I wasn’t comparing it to gaydom’s quest for marriage, but to demonstrate how promises made during debates are often broken once a foothold is gain based on the assurances given, which are then broken.

    I suspect, given the ferocity of their processes, the gay marriage push will not be the end of it, and that, once marriage is changed to mean anything goes, other agendas will enter, because as it is marriage is beautifully defined and clear, but, to accommodate other possibilities the compromises and complications presented will open a huge range of possibilities, some of which even the gays will bulk at.

    No, I say lave the marriage act as it is. Let the same sex community have something else which gives them similar rights in terms of asset distribution and the like, but let the heterosexual community retain the standard and values of marriage as they are.

  11. Ok, yes Gay people have an agenda… Ok?

    Just as Aboriginal people had an agenda in 1960 to gain the vote and be recognised as human beings in the constitution,

    There’s only about 2% of them, and they never had the vote before, so what were they doing trying to change the constitution? They will never be equal, so whats the point? ( sarcasm )
    We got along fine before this, the church was looking after them, and everything was sweet.

    Everyone has an agenda in this world. I heard there were some churches in Australia that have an agenda to turn the whole of society Christian! Others are trying to infiltrate and influence government with their Christian ideas!!

    Even conservatives have an agenda – to keep everything the same as it was.

    When you say the gays have an agenda, have a go at defining what it might be.

  12. Greg,
    ‘All the crying out of “gays will force us to do stuff” is just bigotry, fear and stupidity in the guise of moral and theological outrage.’

    Not really. It’s pointing out the possibility that there are some who are prepared to take things further than others.

    In any debate both sides have to draw a line somewhere, and both have to put up reasonable arguments for their case.

    Slippery slope prospects are always admissible, within reason, as indicated with the abortion debate, which nobody denies here was taken much further than originally argued for by pro-abortionists twenty years ago, so why wouldn’t the gays press for more once they have achieved this goal, and why shouldn’t Christians make a case which can preempt any attempt at storming the bastion of Church fidelity and tradition in marriage also?

    This doesn’t indicate bigotry at all, otherwise it could be said that gays are bigoted for seeking to undermine Christian values.

    On ordination, the reason women have not taken men to court over ordination is:

    a) Synods are forms of court within the Church, and it has been taken there, often, and :

    b) they are Christians in ministry seeking recognition from within the Church structure.

    Homosexual couples desiring a person of the cloth to marry them in a Christian ceremony in a Cathedral or historic church is a different matter altogether. OK, maybe it won’t happen, but are you prepared to bet your house on it?

    I don’t personally give this as a reason for disallowing homosexual marriage. I am certain scripture is enough to prevent Christians from taking this course. I am also adamant that God will never recognise so-called gay marriage anyway, so why defy God?

  13. wazza2, gays have an agenda to be married, and for that marriage to be seen as equal to heterosexual marriage, and to change the constitution to remove the definition of marriage being between a man and a woman to exclusion of all others.

    From there, I am certain they would like to have the Church recognise fully and have a written Church constitution somewhere that marriage is acceptable in the sight of God.

    But it will have to begin with the present constitutional definition of marriage.

    How that will be changed has me scratching my head, because it won’t be pretty!

    Perhaps you could come up with a new definition.

    No one seems to have given any thought to this and I have not seen it argued or debated anywhere. Surely this should be the primary consideration, since it is in a redefined constitutional definition of marriage that the anomalies and cracks will begin to appear.

    The present definition is so perfectly logical and suited to the traditional and understood values of marriage that it seems stupid to even consider changing such a brilliantly simple elucidation to accommodate what will became one of the greatest moral debacles in history.

    If gayety is to be granted equal secular status as same-sex couples to married couples, it should be in a form which is apart from the constitutional understanding of marriage currently in existence.

    Marriage as it is currently defined is perfect and simple. One of the best pieces of legislation we have. Don’t touch it. It is sacred.

  14. Steve, gee you talk nonsense sometimes. What Church constitution are you talking about? Are you saying that a constitution can be drawn that binds Catholics, Anglicans, Lutherans, Uniting, Baptists, Pentecostals even Muslims?

    Oh and Catholics don’t have synods, they’re bound by the Majesterium of the Church (ie bishops and the Pope). If they say no, it ain’t happening.

  15. I’m actually pointing out how ludicrous the argument for recognised gay marriage in the sight of God is, Bones. I’m glad you almost got the futility of it all!

  16. On the slippery slope argument, from the wiki:


    This form of argument often provides evaluative judgments on social change: once an exception is made to some rule, nothing will hold back further, more egregious exceptions to that rule.
    Note that these arguments may indeed have validity, but they require some independent justification of the connection between their terms: otherwise the argument (as a logical tool) remains fallacious.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_slope

  17. Well, these arguments have some merit because we have seen how, with time, all things change, and what is declared unreasonable now will become reasonable n the future as society, particularly secular society, becomes either more liberalised or reverts to conservatism.

    The abortion shift is an obvious case in point. The arguments shifted very quickly once it became clear abortion would be legalised. Today, any criticism is considered wrong, any attempt to discover actual data is considered intrusive, and men haver almost totally been told to back off completely.

    The gay movement has come a long way, and, for some issues, rightly so, since the 60’s when being caught in a homosexual relationship was a criminal offence. Every step was carefully orchestrated, and has led to the latest unified attempt at harnessing marriage.

    I have no reason to doubt that it will succeed. But , in view of the steady progress made by this movement, it would be naive to suggest it will end at marriage.

    Can you tell me why, when the gays put together legislation which was adopted by State and Territory Governments in its fulness, which led to them being recognised as equal to de facto relationships with all the property rights included, which is as close to marital rights as you can get [practically identical], they also put forward legislation to lower the age of consent for males to 16?

    It happened in more than one State or Territory. But why? What was the point of this addition?

  18. Steve, yeah I think you’re right. So it’s up to the church to teach it’s people the truth and to demonstrate that God’s way is the best.
    Happy marriages and families is the best way.

  19. SM,
    The defence of marriage as it is is paramount. The promotion of it is the best way forward.

    Rather than teaching on the various sexual possibilities and gender issues in schools, it would be better to give sound advice on relationships, finding a life partner, planning wise financial transactions, successful workplace and professional strategies, building family and being contributing members of society. All could be optional courses of course, but would make a lot more sense than politically correct nothingness, false equality and vagueness.

    With all the publicity marriage is receiving, I would like to see the media do some kind of feature on what marriage truly is for the average heterosexual nuclear family, and the advantages of the kind of solid family life which is found all over the world.

    Gayety has had enough of a run in the media. Now it is time for wholesome and beneficial heterosexual relationships to be considered.

  20. If we are concerned about vulnerable ‘younger looking’ boys, why are we not remotely concerned about girls?

    Why put pressure on kids to choose one way or another anyway?

    Your debate in Australia is mirrored in the UK, btw.

  21. Greg, why, if they have now reached the age of consent at 16, do you still call them boys?

    Surely now they are regarded as men who can engage in consential sex, and of course the older homosexual men want homosexual sex with them.

    Are you really naive enough to think it was only 16 year old boys who wanted gay sex with 16 year olds exclusively?

    You see what I mean by slippery slope logic? It is so deflective and deceptive.

  22. put it another way … your young looking 16 year old daughter is seen talking to a 48 year old man with a reputation as a big spending playboy.

    As a father, your instinct is to flatten him … and then plant him 6-feet under. Now, is she capable of making up her own mind and going with him?

    Now what if it is a boy of 16 seen talking to a flamboyant 48 year old man with a reputation for splashing lots of money.

    How would you feel?

    Yet it is now completely acceptable under the law for consensual sexual activity … even if the boy is only doing it for a promised ipad.

    When I was 20 years old, I thought I knew it all. I thought I was clever enough and mature enough to see through things and to make informed and sensible choices.

    20 years later and I realise that I am hopelessly naive and vacuous. I have learned that I need to become mature and gain the ability to see through deceptions and not to take things on trust.

    Sure, there’s plenty of streetwise kids out there. There are also plenty more who aren’t.

    Our nations have done a dis-service to our kids in the name of ‘equality’. Why should we only allow the exploitation of girls? Lets allow the exploitation of boys too.

  23. Oh I used to love the slippery slide.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2004/05/slippery_slop.html

    The maddening “slippery slope” argument against gay marriage.

    Anyone else bored to tears with the “slippery slope” arguments against gay marriage? Since few opponents of homosexual unions are brave enough to admit that gay weddings just freak them out, they hide behind the claim that it’s an inexorable slide from legalizing gay marriage to having sex with penguins outside JC Penney’s. The problem is it’s virtually impossible to debate against a slippery slope. Before you know it you fall down, break your crown, and Rick Santorum comes tumbling after.

    Still, as gay marriages started happening in Massachusetts this week, we heard it yet again as James Dobson of Focus on the Family insisted on Hannity & Colmes that “you could have polygamy. You could have incest. You could have marriage between a father and a daughter. You could have two widows, or two sisters or two brothers.” (Two widows?) Dobson further warned, “Once you cross that Rubicon, then there’s no place to stop. Because if a judge can say two men and two women can marry, there is no reason on Earth why some judge some place is not going to say, this is not fair. Three women or three men, or five and two or five and five.”

    And here’s Bill O’Reilly pointing out that “if anybody can get married, then I want the McGuire twins and I have to have a nice honeymoon in Provincetown.” The notion that the institution of marriage could withstand every modification and reform it’s seen over the centuries (centuries since the biblical Jacob married two sisters) yet cannot endure this new one, is the new party line.

    Sen. Rick Santorum got into hot water for spewing this argument last spring: “If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual (gay) sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything.” Anything, mind you. Justice Antonin Scalia made the same point in his dissent in last year’s gay sodomy case, Lawrence v. Texas, when he wrote, “State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are likewise sustainable only in light of Bowers’ validation of laws based on moral choices. Every single one of these laws is called into question by today’s decision.”

    The real problem is that there are really only three arguments against gay marriage: One is rooted in entirely God’s preferences—which have little bearing on Equal Protection or Due Process doctrine, as far as I can tell. The second cites inconclusive research on its negative effects on children. The backup is the slippery slope jeremiad, which seems to pass for a legal argument, at least on cable TV. But fear of the slippery slope alone is not a sufficient justification for doing the wrong thing in any individual case. In a superb dialogue on gay marriage in Slate, Andrew Sullivan, responding to David Frum, makes this point eloquently: “The precise challenge for morally serious people is to make rational distinctions between what is arbitrary and what is essential in important social institutions. … If you want to argue that a lifetime of loving, faithful commitment between two women is equivalent to incest or child abuse, then please argue it. It would make for fascinating reading. But spare us this bizarre point that no new line can be drawn in access to marriage—or else everything is up for grabs and, before we know where we are, men will be marrying their dogs.”

    Now, slippery slopes are not to be sneezed at. Professor Eugene Volokh of UCLA law school has done some extremely serious thinking on the subject and, while he does not himself oppose gay marriage, he cautions that one ignores slippery slope effects at one’s peril. But he also reminds us that slippery slopes are only metaphors. They are not intrinsic principles of law. Each step in the slope must be analyzed, critiqued, and evaluated on its merits. And that is happening only at the very margins of the gay marriage debate.

    Another problem with the slippery slope objections to gay marriage is that they present a moving target. No two opponents of gay marriage seem to agree upon where this parade of horribles begins or ends. You can order your comparisons off the Santorum Menu (“bigamy, polygamy, incest, adultery”), the Scalia Menu (“bigamy, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity”), or off the James Dobson Menu, in which all of the above evils ensue, plus the demise of heterosexual marriage altogether. Call this argument the horse-and-elephant leavings, smoking on the ground after the parade of horribles has passed by. No one can plausibly explain why the entire institution of marriage is at risk from gay unions. Which raises yet another objection to slippery slope arguments: These are projections into an unknowable future. Asking proponents of gay marriage to prove that these marriages won’t be bad for kids or families is asking that they prove a negative. The law cannot know the long-term future social effects of legalizing gay marriage (Stanley Kurtz, who has quite fixed views on gay men and their philandering ways, notwithstanding). We can only determine whether it is fundamentally unfair to bar one whole class of citizens from a privilege constitutionally afforded the rest of us.

    The problem with the slippery slope argument is that it depends on inexact, and sometimes hysterical, comparisons. Most of us can agree, for instance, that all the shriekings about gay marriage opening the door to incest with children and pedophilia are inapposite. These things are illegal because they cause irreversible harms. Similarly, adultery, to the extent it’s illegal anymore, produces a tangible victim. Let’s also agree that we can probably also take the bestiality out of the mix. While Rep. Marilyn Musgrave, the Colorado Republican who authored an amendment to the Constitution that would bar gay marriage, thinks it’s a short hop from gay marriage to sex with cats, the rest of us can intuitively understand that there are sound policy and health reasons to ban sex with animals.

    Sound policy and health reasons similarly suggest that there is at least a rational basis for keeping prostitution illegal. This one is a closer call, but there are inarguably ways in which prostitution has negative effects on women, and families, and public health. To the list of mostly irrelevant examples above, I’d add masturbation and fornication (intercourse between unmarried adults) which, while horrifying to Justice Scalia, are not only legal but also great fun as far as most Americans are concerned.

    Bracket all the hysterical and irrelevant stops along the slippery slope (some of which are there only to trivialize homosexuality) and we are left to try to draw principled lines between gay marriage, in which no one is harmed, and adult incest, adultery, bigamy, or polyamory. This is where the debate should begin. Not at child molesting. My colleague Will Saletan has argued that there is in fact no principled reason for legally prohibiting sex between cousins and I am, I think, persuaded that he is correct. But one can plausibly argue that there is a rational basis for states to ban polygamous and polyamorous marriages in which there has been historical evidence of an imbalance of power, coercion (particularly of young girls), and an enormous financial burden placed on the state. None of these arguments can be made against gay marriage. And as my colleague Ann Hulbert has shown, the data about the effects of gay marriage on child rearing are too ambiguous to support any legal assertions about harm to children.

    While Stanley Kurtz claims he has won the slippery slope debate outright, his analysis, here, is reasonably limited to the dangers of polygamy and polyamory. But beyond just the policy differences between the two, there is also a legal bulwark between Justice Kennedy’s reasoning in Lawrence v. Texas (and the Massachusetts decision in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, which borrowed heavily from the reasoning of Lawrence) and the invasion of the polygamists: The right to sexual privacy Kennedy finds in the line of cases starting with Griswold v. Connecticut, the Connecticut birth-control case from 1965, is an intimate right, between two consenting partners. The court calls these “the most intimate and personal choices a person may make in a lifetime, choices central to personal dignity and autonomy.” The desire of a group of seven people to marry simply does not intuitively fit into that binary sphere of intimacy.

    Just because advocates of polygamy have tried to leverage the Lawrencedecision to support their cause doesn’t mean there are no differences between the two marginalized groups. And it’s just not an argument against gay marriage to say, “I told you those bigamists would use this in court!” It would be stupid for the bigamists not to try.

  24. Noe to suggest that intimacy is binary and can be limited to only two parties will hotly be debated by that polyamory and polygamy proponents.

    That whole argument fails to provide a logical unassailable conclusion that the gay marraige is morally or functionally superior to polygamy or polyamory.

  25. I personally think that it should be decriminalised for a man to have more than one wife.

    On the grounds that it is its own punishment,

  26. Wazza – I don’t believe that it should be decriminalised – but agree that it is punsihment in itself.

  27. Well, it is inevitable that polygamy will be adopted. The Archbishop of Canterbury has already suggested that Sharia law be inserted into the British legal system.

    Men are allowed to have four wives if they are Muslim, why not anyone else?

    But of course, if you are Muslim, it dosn’t matter if you have 4 mothers-in-law. They have no input, as it is only your own mother that has an input. For western men, that isn’t the deal.

    Solomon had 700 wives … which means he had 700 mothers-in-law. Not very wise, but hey, he had a lot of wisdom for other people but none for himself, which is why he tried to stop his boy making the same mistake! “now son, watch the women!”

    and … “I have known one man in a thousand whom I could respect, but not one woman.”

    700 wives, 300 concubines … and no respect for women at all.

    An anything goes, free-for-all will lead to less respect between men and women. It will lead to increasing breakdown in relationships as the taboos of christianised-society are thrown away.

    Mormons will reintroduce polygamy and we will see some vary strange stuff on the fringes of Christianity.

    Bedlam.

  28. Well I’ve seen older men pretty keen on young women twenty years junior to them, in the workplace. It’s common enough. So I can’t see why older gay men wouldn’t be keen on younger gay men. Hey – my ex boss had a toy boy twenty years younger than him when he turned gay after his mid-life crisis at forty. (Mind you – the young guy was at least twenty.) And for balance – I’ve known another gay couple with a max ten year age gap, retire together – they’ve been together at least two decades by now. That’s a couple who should be in a civil partnership. (I was glad when the super laws were changed to protect the poorer one in the relationship – it would have been obscene to see the older one’s family members inherit whatever he left if something happened, and his partner of decades ignored.)

    The idea of making sex legal at 16 isn’t to make it OK for people to have sex with people heaps younger than them. It’s recognising that if they don’t make sex legal at that age, which is fraught with hormones, and a time at which many young people are physically sexually mature, then we will end up with many young people deemed criminals.

    Personally, I think civil partnerships should be recognised everywhere, whatever the genders involved. I still think marriage is traditional between a man and a woman, even in cultures where gay relationships were revered as higher, and I’d like to leave it that way. But really, my main objection is due to my faith. Since we live in a secular world, I can’t impose that on others. Society has to be convinced by other arguments than ‘it has always been that way’ or ‘it is God’s plan’.

    Given that I know couples bringing up kids where two (non-gay) single women share a household to help with mutual childrearing, and other families with only one parent, and the kids are fantastic, it is hard to argue from a purely secular view. You can’t argue that marriage always works, or that the kids are always happy. You can’t argue that gay couples will be bad parents. You can’t own another person’s life. It’s not about murder or inflicting physical harm. I expect that eventually, we will see same sex marriage allowed, unless thousands of years of history regarding the nature of marriage is allowed some sway.

  29. In terms of having multiple husbands, I expect that it would cause some harm to the subordinate husbands in the marriage, and would be a lot less likely to be allowed.

  30. “But really, my main objection is due to my faith. Since we live in a secular world, I can’t impose that on others. Society has to be convinced by other arguments than ‘it has always been that way’ or ‘it is God’s plan’.”

    The whole point of democracy is for people to vote the way they see things. Different people have differing viewpoints. Whether Christian, atheist, Muslim or Marxist. So there’s nothing wrong with a Christian saying that society would be better off holding to what they consider to be Christian values. Nothing wrong with that at all.
    So it doesn’t make sense to say that you have to consider that the country is secular.

    It comes down to what you believe. I think gay partnerships are not good. You can argue with that and say it’s ridiculous, but that’s your right and I respect it. I don’t agree with non-married people living together and having the same legal rights as married.

    But that is now the law of the land and I respect that. And I don’t abuse people who live together at all. But if I were to caste my vote on something I would vote according to how I believe.

    I think pornography is wrong, and not a good thing for society. Probably if I were not a Christian I wouldn’t see things that way.
    So I am happy to vote to outlaw it.

    So RP, I think some Christians go overboard with trying to consider the secular values of Australia.

  31. “It was generally suggested by the liberal voices that they did not.”

    Well of course it was. “Liberals” are lying, f*cking control freaks who want to tell everybody else what they can, and cannot do. That is why they hate Christians.

  32. Well of course it was. “Liberals” are lying, f*cking control freaks who want to tell everybody else what they can, and cannot do. That is why they hate Christians.

    Your statement is illogical for a variety of reasons.

    It has been conservative Christianity that has sought to control people’s lives. Look at the history of Europe where even where you worshipped was governed by your church government. This included the banning of, and punishment for, dancing, working (or playing) on the Sabbath, playing cards, alcohol, religious images, other Christian churches and killing others who disagreed with your brand of Christianity.

  33. I think that was Catholic paganism followed by Puritan polity, wasn’t it Bones?

    It had nothing to do with the liberty that is found in Christ, whatever it was.

  34. SM – I would vote the way I see things. As you say, its what we do in a democracy. Just saying, I don’t think it will have much sway in a secular society, because the true arguments put forward by the church are not very convincing to non-believers.

    But I do think the legal rights of non-married people living together should be protected, with their circumstances taken into account. Especially if they have kids.

  35. Actually, most of the non-Christians I know are opposed to gay marriage, and they think that deep down it is wonderful to not have had sex with other people before marriage. I really don’t know many people who deep down in their hearts fall in love, get married and can say “Honey, I’m so glad you had lots of sex with your previous lovers”.

    Most men don’t rejoice when their daughter moves in with a guy, or starts sleeping with a guy. And most women find it harder to “move on” if they’ve been sexually involved with someone.

    So, actually, even without talking about God or the Bible, or anything religious, saving sex for marriage (to someone of the opposite gender) is really not absurd at all.

    We’ve just had 50 years of brainwashing to think it’s normal to have sex with people if you feel like it.

    And, society is no better. And judging by the rape and what men kind of porn men watch, women are not respected or cherished more than before.

    Go watch the porn that teenage boys feed on and tell me if you think things are getting any better.

  36. In other words, God’s ways are not stupid. They are perfect. Really they are. We should have confidence to tell people that.

  37. “So, actually, even without talking about God or the Bible, or anything religious, saving sex for marriage (to someone of the opposite gender) is really not absurd at all.”

    Not saying that it is absurd.

    But there are people in committed relationships who see the marriage ceremony as unnecessary, who get mortgages together, or have kids together, pretty much as if they are married. And in past times, as well as today, they would have been effectively recognised as life partners, by their society, since not all parts of society had a marriage ceremony, which was a legal thing, not necessarily a church thing. These are the people that I believe should have their rights protected. And the current laws do reflect this, re de facto relationships.

    Some de facto relationships do reflect a reluctance of one or other or both partners to commit. But others reflect a different view of the necessity of paperwork or ceremony. Others still, simply the cost of marriage.

  38. The history of marriage is a strange one from the middle ages to the victorian age actually.

    Probably because if you made a mistake you couldn’t divorce without act of parliament.

    But, it seems that common people would get hitched in a betrothal ceremony, not a marriage. They would then actually get married after living together and usually after the first child was conceived or even born.

    This was standard CoE practice. It essentially gave cover for all that frolicking between two people who were in love, and allowed them a chance to step away from the relationship. But they did live together with the blessing of the village and the Vicar.

    But usually the blushing bride would have a bump at least.

    Isn’t that surprising? I wonder what God made of it all?

    It seems a surprisingly robust societal setup however. Local communities were fairly small. Everyone new everyone’s business. If the budding relationship fell apart … well, they weren’t married, no children to worry about.

    Once she was pregnant, then they would rush the marriage service and get it sorted. Job done … knowing that there was absolutely no way out.

    Is this sensible, or is it a licence for fornication?

    And anyway RP why can’t we have multiple husbands?

  39. @RP, I’d say that in times past when there were people recognized as couples but no legal documentation, that it was the same for everyone.

    But if there are people living together but just haven’t signed the paperwork, there is usually a reason. And while I know there are exceptions, in most cases it’s usually the guy who doesn’t want to sign the papers.

    And the laws reflect lots of things that Christians don’t agree with, and which I am happy to vote against.

  40. But if there are people living together but just haven’t signed the paperwork, there is usually a reason. And while I know there are exceptions, in most cases it’s usually the guy who doesn’t want to sign the papers.

    Yeah, unfortunately that’s true in my experience too, most of the time. But I did know a couple where the woman was Dutch, and truly couldn’t see the point of the paperwork. But she and her partner had no hesitation committing to a mortgage, and later kids – all the signs of true commitment for the long term. I’d regard them as equivalent to married. Whereas in the other kind of circumstance, there’s often reluctance to commit to those big items, along with the marriage certificate. Some women will go along with it because they fear having no relationship at all if they don’t. (I can understand that, even if I would have chosen to be single in preference myself.) It’s hard to know the situation from the outside.

    Sometimes the desire of one partner to marry ultimately causes a confrontation that breaks up the relationship. I saw that happen to a person who came to know Christ, and was truly shocked when their long term partner (several years) said they didn’t want to commit to a marriage.

  41. I would say that the Dutch woman and her partner were married in the Biblical sense – because in Biblical times there was no paperwork or ceremony. You just shacked up together – possibly with a celebration, and thats it … you’re married.

    Whether they choose to sign the paperwork for the State is not a religious or moral question, merely a matter of personal preference.

    As to the thousands of years of history of marriage being between a man and a woman – although that understanding of marriage has hardly changed, just about everything else about it has changed.
    For thousands of years it was essentially a relationship of ownership, often between a man and several women. Arranged marriages were normal, and until perhaps the last 100 years there was no expectation of love being part of the marriage relationship. Indeed in some times and in some classes, it was expected that true love would occur outside the marriage relationship – between two people who were each married to another – or in a homosexual relationship.

    Until the 20th Century, society’s view of marriage was intimately tied to reproduction, to the support and well-being of any children, and to the administering of their inheritances. This is not to say that love did not occur in earlier marriages, it often did, but it was not the primary purpose.

    Advances/changes in the 20th century, in economics and in contraception (and in the availability of abortion) have changed our view of marriage radically – both for good and for bad. Compatibility and love are expected in the partnership, and children are optional. For the first time in hundreds of years, divorce is an option for the masses.

    So I would say that the idea of homosexual marriage is a natural extension of the changes that the institution of marriage has been going through, particularly in the last 60 years, as it changed from a contract tied to reproduction to an expression of commitment in a loving relationship.

    I do think though that the pace of social change has been accelerating since the 60s and this causes many people to feel left out of the debate. Many people feel that change has been thrust upon them, and this is not helped by the style of argument and activism from many liberals.

  42. I’m really only interested in marriage from a Christian perspective. None of what you have said is in accord with God’s definition of marriage, or his intentions for marriage. What has taken place historically, if it is indeed anything as you claim, is irrelevant to God’s will if it doesn’t match it.

    The secular will have its way and probably very soon, so that homosexuals will be given marriage rights. Then the fun will begin legislatively, because it will open so many hitherto unmentioned possibilities that authorities will wonder what hit them. No one here has come up with a suitable definition of marriage which will include homosexual and lesbian couples.

    In fact, there doesn’t seem to be a definition readily articulated anywhere. Is this oversight deliberate, do you think, or is a definition just the next step in the process? Because, I’ll tell you what, it’s going to be a huge political bunfight in Parliament attempting to produce an adequate definition to replace the current, very good definition with something that, to at least half of the Parliament, is an affront to their ideal of marriage.

    And so it should be. Marriage is an institution given by God which should be guarded and protected, not abused to appease people who are completely unable physically to consummate a marriage.

    I know of a couple whose marriage was annulled only recently because it was not consummated. It is still lawful to annul a marriage this way. I can think of others I know of who separated and have remarried for the same reasons. How will this now be defined? How will a lesbian couple consummate their marriage? Will you call homosexual penetration consummation? Before God? Before God will you?

    When a man is joined to another woman they become one flesh. What of a man with a man? A woman can’t with a woman, so where are you with this conundrum?

    So, come now, define marriage as you see it to be in the future for all configurations.

    To dance around this issue you will say that a marriage doesn’t have to be consummated in the accepted way for it to be ratified. ‘What about those who are unable to consummate through age or infirmity but chose to stay together’ you will ask? Yes, that is fine, but I am talking about consummation in God’s sight, and not as a compromise to allow male with male and female with female intercourse to be considered anything like husband and wife marriage.

    I think I like God’s definition best of all. A man shall leave his mother and father and cleave to his wife. So be it!

  43. I prefer God’s definition as well. I prefer the term ‘civil union’ for gay unions. But the church has one definition of marriage, and society’s isn’t defined by the bible these days, but by laws and legal interpretations. The bible isn’t the official basis for determining legal understanding for our culture.

    Obviously the gay community must feel that ‘marriage’ has a meaning that is not encompassed by ‘civil union’. For us, marriage is a commitment before God. This element can’t be defined by a legal system. But what is marriage to a non-believer? It is a deep commitment, but if they don’t believe God is part of that commitment, then what is it that makes ‘marriage’ different from ‘civil union’?

    Is it that they would feel more accepted by a society that includes believers if they could use the term ‘married’? Is it that they feel the criticism inherent in our refusal to let them use the term ‘marriage’? Do they want to force us to say that there is no difference, and force us to redefine our own religious convictions because they don’t like them?

    I think people who don’t share our faith should be allowed to have civil unions, but in the same way, I think our religious convictions should be respected. I guess this is why a church will not be forced to marry a gay couple if the laws allowing marriage change–unless that church has a different view about gay marriage anyway.

    By calling it ‘marriage’ though, it forces a societal shift in the way marriage is viewed, that will force the churches who’ve not been in conflict with this aspect of society before, onto the periphery of society on this issue. In much the same way the gay community is now.

    Controlling the language helps control the thinking, so of course everyone wants the word defined in the way that suits their own hopes for society in the future.

    (As for consummation… details of what is acceptable can always be argued and changed. If a straight couple does not consummate their marriage, there’s a good chance they were not that sexually intimate in other ways either.)

  44. …but if they don’t believe God is part of that commitment, then what is it that makes ‘marriage’ different from ‘civil union’?

    They may of course believe that God is part of that commitment and that our understanding of God is wrong. In which case, they would certainly want to use the word ‘marriage’. The term ‘civil’ union connotes secularity.

  45. Should a heterosexual atheist couple be allowed to get married, or should they just be allowed a civil union? Shouldnt it offend our religious convictions if atheists get married?

    What about an Islamic or Buddhist heterosexual couple?

    What if the woman is Christian and the man is Agnostic, but the women believes he is likely to become a Christian in the future?

    What about if the couple say they are Christians, but they are of the ultra-liberal Spong variety and are effectively atheists?

    What if the couple are bona-fide evangelicals, but the man has a terrible wandering eye, and it is judged that he will very likely be an adulterer?

    Who would inspect a couples’ religious or moral credentials in order to decide if they can get married? Steve? Quell Horreur!

    Do Christians own the whole concept of marriage, so that their views on what it means should be taken with more weight than say Hindus or secularists? On what basis would this claim be established?

    Marriage in our society is separate from a religious concept (except for those who have a particular religious conviction). One cant very well argue that society shouldnt allow certain marriages because my particular book has a story that goes back to creation, and my particular deity dosent agree with it. Otherwise we will have to listen to similar claims from every religion.

    Individual churches can marry or refuse to marry who ever they want, but in order to have a reasonable discussion on the matter for the whole of society we will need a better argument than “My personal God says its an abomination”.

  46. Slippery Slope in action, from the New York Times:

    Bishops Say Rules on Gay Parents Limit Freedom of Religion
    By LAURIE GOODSTEIN

    ‘Roman Catholic bishops in Illinois have shuttered most of the Catholic Charities affiliates in the state rather than comply with a new requirement that says they must consider same-sex couples as potential foster-care and adoptive parents if they want to receive state money. The charities have served for more than 40 years as a major link in the state’s social service network for poor and neglected children.

    The bishops have followed colleagues in Washington, D.C., and Massachusetts who had jettisoned their adoption services rather than comply with nondiscrimination laws.

    For the nation’s Catholic bishops, the Illinois requirement is a prime example of what they see as an escalating campaign by the government to trample on their religious freedom while expanding the rights of gay people. The idea that religious Americans are the victims of government-backed persecution is now a frequent theme not just for Catholic bishops, but also for Republican presidential candidates and conservative evangelicals.

    “In the name of tolerance, we’re not being tolerated,” said Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill., a civil and canon lawyer who helped drive the church’s losing battle to retain its state contracts for foster care and adoption services.

    The Illinois experience indicates that the bishops face formidable opponents who also claim to have justice and the Constitution on their side. They include not only gay rights advocates, but also many religious believers and churches that support gay equality (some Catholic legislators among them). They frame the issue as a matter of civil rights, saying that Catholic Charities was using taxpayer money to discriminate against same-sex couples.

    Tim Kee, a teacher in Marion, Ill., who was turned away by Catholic Charities three years ago when he and his longtime partner, Rick Wade, tried to adopt a child, said: “We’re both Catholic, we love our church, but Catholic Charities closed the door to us. To add insult to injury, my tax dollars went to provide discrimination against me.”

    The bishops are engaged in the religious liberty battle on several fronts. They have asked the Obama administration to lift a new requirement that Catholic and other religiously affiliated hospitals, universities and charity groups cover contraception in their employees’ health plans. A decision has been expected for weeks now.

    At the same time, the bishops are protesting the recent denial of a federal contract to provide care for victims of sex trafficking, saying the decision was anti-Catholic. An official with the Department of Health and Human Services recently told a hearing on Capitol Hill that the bishops’ program was rejected because it did not provide the survivors of sex trafficking, some of whom are rape victims, with referrals for abortions or contraceptives.

    Critics of the church argue that no group has a constitutional right to a government contract, especially if it refuses to provide required services.

    But Anthony R. Picarello Jr., general counsel and associate general secretary of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, disagreed. “It’s true that the church doesn’t have a First Amendment right to have a government contract,” he said, “but it does have a First Amendment right not to be excluded from a contract based on its religious beliefs.”

    The controversy in Illinois began when the state legislature voted in November 2010 to legalize civil unions for same-sex couples, which the state’s Catholic bishops lobbied against. The legislation was titled “The Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Unions Act,” and Bishop Paprocki said he was given the impression that it would not affect state contracts for Catholic Charities and other religious social services.

    In New York State, religious groups lobbied for specific exemption language in the same-sex marriage bill. But bishops in Illinois did not negotiate, Bishop Paprocki said.

    “It would have been seen as, ‘We’re going to compromise on the principle as long as we get our exception.’ We didn’t want it to be seen as buying our support,” he said.

    Catholic Charities is one of the nation’s most extensive social service networks, serving more than 10 million poor adults and children of many faiths across the country. It is made up of local affiliates that answer to local bishops and dioceses, but much of its revenue comes from the government. Catholic Charities affiliates received a total of nearly $2.9 billion a year from the government in 2010, about 62 percent of its annual revenue of $4.67 billion. Only 3 percent came from churches in the diocese (the rest came from in-kind contributions, investments, program fees and community donations).

    In Illinois, Catholic Charities in five of the six state dioceses had grown dependent on foster care contracts, receiving 60 percent to 92 percent of their revenues from the state, according to affidavits by the charities’ directors. (Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Chicago pulled out of foster care services in 2007 because of problems with its insurance provider.)

    When the contracts came up for renewal in June, the state attorney general, along with the legal staff in the governor’s office and the Department of Children and Family Services, decided that the religious providers on state contracts would no longer be able to reject same-sex couples, said Kendall Marlowe, a spokesman for the department.

    The Catholic providers offered to refer same-sex couples to other agencies (as they had been doing for unmarried couples), but that was not acceptable to the state, Mr. Marlowe said. “Separate but equal was not a sufficient solution on other civil rights issues in the past either,” he said.

    Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Rockford decided at that point to get out of the foster care business. But the bishops in Springfield, Peoria, Joliet and Belleville decided to fight, filing a lawsuit against the state.

    Taking a completely different tack was the agency affiliated with the conservative Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, which, like the Catholic Church, does not sanction same-sex relationships. Gene Svebakken, president and chief executive of the agency, Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois, visited all seven pastoral conferences in his state and explained that the best option was to compromise and continue caring for the children.

    “We’ve been around 140 years, and if we didn’t follow the law we’d go out of business,” Mr. Svebakken said. “We believe it’s God-pleasing to serve these kids, and we know we do a good job.”

    In August, Judge John Schmidt, a circuit judge in Sangamon County, ruled against Catholic Charities, saying, “No citizen has a recognized legal right to a contract with the government.” He did not address the religious liberty claims, ruling only that the state did not violate the church’s property rights.

    Three of the dioceses filed an appeal, but in November filed a motion to dismiss their lawsuit. The Dioceses of Peoria and Belleville are spinning off their state-financed social services, with the caseworkers, top executives and foster children all moving to new nonprofits that will no longer be affiliated with either diocese.

    Gary Huelsmann, executive director of Catholic Social Services of Southern Illinois, in the Belleville Diocese, said the decision was excruciating for everyone.

    “We have 600 children abused and neglected in an area where there are hardly any providers,” he said. “Us going out of business would have been detrimental to these children, and that’s a sin, too.”

    The work will be carried on, but the Catholic Church’s seminal, historic connection with it has been severed, noted Mr. Marlowe, the spokesman for the state’s child welfare agency. “The child welfare system that Catholic Charities helped build,” he said, “is now strong enough to survive their departure.”’

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/29/us/for-bishops-a-battle-over-whose-rights-prevail.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&smid=fb-share&adxnnlx=1325192023-8C2kzLYSTxRwGEK%20CbYFDw

  47. There you go, Greg, that’s what gay man Dick aka Dr Anon etc thinks of your support.

    That’s how he engages in what he would term gay ‘marital’ sex – in toilets, like perverts, with anyone who’s interested, just like the stereotypical imagery passed down of homo sex being an obscene exchange between desperate men. They used to advertise themselves in public toilets by writing obscenities on the walls which made it hateful to have to use public toilets at one time. I didn’t realise this still goes on. What a joke.

    This is what he wants for all gays – recognition of polluted sex in toilet booths with anyone who’ll have him.

    I read an article in a local Sunday paper a few weeks ago which outlined the life of a famous English journalist, columnist and writer who turned out to be homosexual, but didn’t begin his sexual exploits until he reached middle age, because he had been a religious man who ‘kept under’ his body, living like a Jesuit and tormenting himself over his sexual cravings, using it, initially, as a humiliating self torture until he ‘came out’.

    But did he seek a single ‘partner’ and settle down for life in a monogamous relationship? No. He claimed to have had over a thousand different men over the course of his sexual life before he finally departed this earthly existence. In his memoir he talked of stalking various dens looking for men for one night stands. He could have several encounters in a day, because men’s sex drive is more frequent than women’s, so what must it be like for gay men? Is that not a tragedy for a man?

    One of the college theology professors you used as an example of Christian gayness also admitted to using multiple partners, and even attempted to justify it from scripture. Why? Because, he admitted, this was the normal lifestyle for gay men – seeking partners for short term or one off sexual encounters rather than long term relationships.

    I’m glad ‘Dick’ has entered this discussion, not because of his profanity and the crassness of his projected lifestyle, but because he points out the reality and tragedy of homosexuality for many of those caught up in it.

    He also attacks the Church for being the Church, Christians for being Christians, and people of the Bible for believing and living according to the Bible.

    He accuses all priests of being perverts, when we know that there are a handful who have been or are, and those are were who they are before they entered the priesthood, because they are predatory, and like ‘Dick’ take advantage of Christianity to pervert it through their own lusts, not caring one iota that they bring it into disrepute.

    The fact is that perverts are attracted to wherever their prey is.

    Not all gays are like this, of course, and some live in monogamous relationships, but I’m glad ‘Dick’ has reminded us of the more seedy aspect of the lifestyle for many, as evidenced by the various ‘gay pride’ events, which are adverts for promiscuity and sexual deviance, not a lifestyle of purity and monogamous, loving relationships, which I put to you are rare amongst the male gay community – the exception rather than the rule.

    However I am appalled at the way ‘Dick’ has treated you, given your stance on the issue, but not surprised.

  48. Apart from this, I find it incredulous that ‘Dick’, aka ‘Dr Anon’, condemns Christians for speaking out against the sin he is engaged in, which is what they’re supposed to do anyway, and says he’ll never go to a church which points out sin!

    Little does he know that the exposure of sin is the beginning of redemption.

    One wonders what he makes of Jesus, who never backed off from telling people to sin no more.

  49. “Should a heterosexual atheist couple be allowed to get married,”
    Sure.

    “Shouldnt it offend our religious convictions if atheists get married?”
    No.

    “What about an Islamic or Buddhist heterosexual couple?”
    Sure.

    “What if the woman is Christian and the man is Agnostic, but the women believes he is likely to become a Christian in the future?”
    Sure. (But it’s up to an individual Minister to decide if he wants to conduct their wedding.)

    “What about if the couple say they are Christians, but they are of the ultra-liberal Spong variety and are effectively atheists?”

    Sure.

    “What if the couple are bona-fide evangelicals, but the man has a terrible wandering eye, and it is judged that he will very likely be an adulterer?”
    Sure. (But it’s up to an individual Minister to decide if he wants to conduct their wedding.)

    “Who would inspect a couples’ religious or moral credentials in order to decide if they can get married? Steve?”
    Nobody needs to inspect it for them to get legally married. We live in a democracy. Steve can’t decide if this couple can get married or not any more than he can decide if an atheist and a Buddhist get married in China. But there is nothing wrong with the atheist and Buddhist couple. We should wish them happiness, and that they love each other and their children if they have them. And that they overcome any difficulties they may have. I would hope that they stay married as long as they are alive and that they have grandchildren and great grandchildren. I would also hope they receive Christ. But if they don’t, I wish them married bliss.

    “Do Christians own the whole concept of marriage, so that their views on what it means should be taken with more weight than say Hindus or secularists?”

    I don’t think any Catholic or evangelical I know claims to “own the whole concept of marriage” – whatever that means …???
    But, we believe that marriage is between a man and a woman, and that it was meant to be for life. And it’s interesting that people all over the world really believe and want the same thing. Which is why fairy stories, and modern romances sell all over the world. Go to China, Russia, Nigeria and find a couple who married and are still together and love each other and you will warm the hearts of people from people all over the world. Because that’s what people really want deep down. In the same way, the Buddhist and the atheist also want to live – and to live forever, and to have purpose and to do good and not bad.

    We were made by God. The Christian, the Catholic, the atheist, the Buddhist. That’s why we understand love, why we don’t like betrayal, why we want to trust and to be trusted. People are more alike than you can imagine. But we also sin and fail to live up to the standards that come from within us – the Christian, the atheist and the Buddhist.

    Wazza. These things are simple. I’m surprised you don’t understand them if you have been walking with God.

    My guess is that at the heart of the problem is the fact that you’ve been disappointed..

    For a while I questioned basic doctrines and truths – and departed from them. Because of tragedy, and because I saw the so called greats in the Kingdom fall one after the other. So I concluded that if not only I was having problems but so was Swaggart, Houston, etc etc etc….that maybe we were just wrong.

    But, I was wrong. God’s ways are perfect. Christians and Christian leaders will sin – David did, Peter did, they did a hundred years ago, and they will in a hundred years.

    Cain murdered, Abraham lied, David committed adultery, Peter denied Christ, etc etc. So it wouldn’t surprise me now if a super dooper great preacher in a house church in China had an affair. It’s not the end of the world, and it doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to believe in marriage, and it doesn’t negate what anyone has preached about murder, envy or gay marriage or whatever.

    Help people to walk in God’s ways. Don’t spend your time telling them it’s okay to live in the mud. Even if they like the mud and can’t imagine anything else.

    God’s ways are perfect, They are the way of life. For the Christian, for the atheist, for the Buddhist.

  50. Of course, wazza2’s argument is again a detour.

    Civil unions would not come into the equation or be necessary, since there are civil celebrants from all religions, and even areligious, who are authorised to marry couples according to the rites of their religion or civil celebrants.

    If a Christian minister, however, is representing the Church and Christian values in a marriage ceremony, he should have the authority to accept or refuse a couple on the grounds of belief or unbelief. The reason is simple and obvious. If a Christian ceremony is to have any virtue or value it needs to be honoured by the couple as well as the celebrant.

    Simply marrying in a Church on emotional, romantic or social grounds isn’t really enough to satisfy the rites of a Christian ceremony. It would be better for the couple to be married by a civil celebrant.

  51. Besides which, in Australia, according to the Marriage Act 1961, there are various denominations authorised to nominate celebrants according to the rites of their denomination.

    If a couple were from a certain religious persuasion they could find a minister who could conduct the ceremony according to those rites.

    So each couple has a choice of hundreds of celebrants, some religious and some secular and can easily find the right celebrant for their occasion by simply going to the Attorney General’s website, or the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in their State or locality. Or maybe check the Yellow Pages!

  52. Steve, your saying Dick is a typical homosexual is like saying the KKK are typical Christians. If he is. Same with comparing stalking in toilets. It happened to me once. A professor from Uni tried to get on to me at the Uni’s toilets. I don’t see that as typical gay behaviour.

  53. And my immediate response was shock and disbelief, so I smacked him in the head. Not very Christlike but he might think twice before doing it again.

  54. It was a secular university, dipstick.

    Anglicans aren’t Calvinist either but hey it’s your story. Facts have nothing do with it.

  55. Do Christian pharmacists marry people?

    These posts have gone beyond Chirpy’s delusions which were deleted.


  56. 1) Do you support two men to f**k?

    2) Do you support two men f**king in a church toilet?

    3) Do you support two priests f**king each other on the church stage?

    4) Do you support photographing this and putting this on you pr0n?

    Err.. not even I am THAT liberal….

  57. This Mr Anon, who claims to be a girl, and is acting like a moron, has accused this site of being censorious, but, as yet has not even been moderated, even though s/he has taken over the entire site in an obnoxious way.

    The truth is that ‘Dick’ (another masculine tag given to deceive) is the person who is undertaking all the censorship by trolling.

    ‘Dick’ (or whoever), you are censorious and a troll.

    You have interrupted several discussions by a group of Christians to prevent them from continuing, whilst drawing attention to yourself in a narcissistic way. What you hope to achieve is pathetic, whatever it is, and in no way original or heroic.

    I challenge you to either show some ‘balls’ and enter the dialogue in an orderly way, or stop your censorship of this blog altogether.

    Should you choose to continue in the present manner, as a childish, petulant, self-serving dipstick, I recommend that you are seriously moderated so that the conversation can continue in a rational way.

    Your conduct is juvenile, obsessive, controlling and you are fast becoming an utter bore.

  58. I also notice some of his posts are just repeats from Lance’s site. I’d say Lance is moderating most of the nonsense.

  59. I could care less who you contact, ‘Dick’, you little princess!

    Are you so precious you can’t take a few home truths even though you’re prepared to dish out the garbage, like some bad mannered little tike!

    Baby!

    I challenge you to come up with some grown up talk to prove you’ve actually got something to say.

    Otherwise you’re noting but a troll! A baby troll!

    And you are absolutely censoring this entire site with your nonsense ramblings on every page you can find and constant trolling.

    As far as your insults go, they are all merely a petulant child learning how to swear and use bad words!

    And totally worthless because I am none of those things, and ever could be since I have been saved, justified and sanctified.

    However, by your own admission you are what you are – a whore and a fornicator!

    No matter. Jesus died for harlots and pimps as well as gays and lesbians, so you only have to repent and your harlotry is over.

  60. Dr. Anon (Drone On) doesn’t have an opinion, just a foul mouth.

    There are many different opinons expressed here, and always have been.

    Happy to live with diversity, but your kind is the type of diversity which claims it is the only one which counts and all others don’t.

    What we are seeing is the classic work of a troll.

    Pointless and generally pitiful.

    And she utterly denies Christ. That’s the worse thing anyone can do.

    Drone On is just a wanna be stirrer with nothing better to do than attempt to ruffle a few feathers. And she thinks it’s a big giggle.

    Well I predict that in a week or so Drone On will get bored with attempting to keep up the trolling and make some excuse about not being able to get through to us all, and chuff off.

    But why wait?

  61. And as for getting banned, well, that is obviously the aim. I’m for putting her out of her misery and letting her go.

    But if you must get yourself banned from places on purpose (what possible reason could anyone actually have for such dumbness?), make sure you’re not banned from God’s heaven. That’s the worse place to be banned from.

    As it stands you can’t get in. But you do still have a chance if you repent.

    Except you don’t have it in you.

    You will be banned – forever!

    Ouch!

  62. By the way, Drone On, I haven’t sworn or used a bad word. I’ve only used the truth.

    According to your own admission – you’re a whore and a fornicator. They are merely dictionary words which describe exactly what you’ve told us about yourself.

    I don’t even mean them as an insult. They describe you well, and you’re on record as saying you love being a whore and a fornicator, so what’s the problem?

    Well, the problem is that, because neither whores nor fornicators figure in God’s plans for the future, they will, indeed, be rejected, banished and cast into the eternal Lake of Fire, to slow-roast forever…

    …unless they repent and renounce their whoring and fornication, that is.

    So all I’ve done is read what you say about yourself and given you an accurate way to get out of your present predicament.

    Nothing bad about that at all.

  63. I’m confused.

    “You’re even worse than Sunni and Shia muslims – at least they just bomb each other; and don’t try to narcissistically attack those who they have no relationship to whatsoever “.

    It’s better to bomb someone than to debate issues on a blog?

    “Why can’t you just argue and talk things through, without resulting to ban people who you simply disagree with?”

    I thought that arguing and talking things through was what went on here. And you have to be pretty bad to be banned. You’d probably have to go overboard with bad language or something silly like that.

    “And to promote your own church, by attacking your competitors”
    Haven’t seen much of that going on.

    Anyway, “at least they just bomb each other” goes down as the strangest comment I’ve seen on any blog on any subject anywhere.

    Hey Mr/Ms/Dr Anon, or whoever you are. I have no power to ban anyone, and don’t want anyone banned. Just keep the language down. Everything you said, you could have said minus bad language, and sounded much more intelligent.

    Hope all goes well with your life.

  64. Anon claims to be a woman, but uses disparaging terms about other women, so probably is not.
    Claims to be an atheist, but has a good knowledge of conservative christianity, and attacks Greg the most.

    Whatever happened to 5PS?

  65. ‘WWJD?’

    He’d tell you he didn’t accuse you, but to go and sin no more.

    But he wouldn’t hold back on naming the sin you’re accused of, even by your own admission. I’ve just quoted what you said of yourself. You called yourself a whore, a lesbian and a fornicator, and boasted that you love it!

    The question is, though:

    What will you do?

    Oh, by the way, when Jesus comes again to usher in the wrath of God he’ll be saying some very different things.

    What will you do then?
    _______________________

    Surely even 5PS is too intelligent to take this tacky tack, wazza2, but the thought crossed my mind.

  66. Greg, you’re not saying 5PS is a lesbian atheist? I heard rumours about John Calvin too but just put it down to propaganda. Maybe not?

    If it is him/her I wonder what James White, John McArthur, John Piper would make of this?

    Probably that he needs to repent.

    If it is him or her.

  67. I think Drone On should be banned simply so s/he can go and boast that they’ve been banned.

    In the great scheme of things his/her bragging about being banned from yet another place s/he worked so hard at being banned from means dip all.

    I mean, at least then the quality of debate will improve and the trollic censorship by Drone On will end.

    Win-win situation. S/he gets to brag about zip all. We get to talk.

    On the other hand, if Drone On wants to actually contribute to the dialogue and respect people rather than vilely and childishly slap them down for being alive and different in outlook, perhaps s/he has something worth reading about and considering.

    There’s obviously a brain in their somewhere hidden under the mucky language and stale accusations, so let’s see if it has anything to say which is worth discussing as adults.

  68. I think s/he more closely resembles Mrs N***erbater at Lance’s than 5PS, by the way. Lance seems to think s/he’s the bees knees so you never know, maybe there’s a connection. He used to splutter expletives like this didn’t he, before becoming more refined in language at Gripesecs?

  69. Just Like A Church has a pretty impressive list of churches they’ve been banned from. Why didn’t they just go to Baptist or Presbyterian or Reformed?

    I’d be interested as to how you can be banned from a Uniting or Anglican church, short of criminal activity against the church itself. These churches are by far the most tolerant.

    OK, I’ll stop feeding the troll.

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