Friday, May 23, 2008

McCain vs. Ellen on Gay Marriage



There's nothing he can say to her face to justify his position. I bet his children and grandchildren are going to be ashamed of this in the future, if they aren't already.

And yeah, Obama isn't a whole lot better on this issue, although he at least has the good sense to be humble when he's wrong.

Related: How Orthodoxy Causes Good Men to do Evil

50 comments:

CyberKitten said...

The look on his face when Ellen said "So, you'll walk me down the aisle?" was just brilliant!

So funny....... [laughs]

G said...

I bet his children and grandchildren are going to be ashamed of this in the future, if they aren't already.

That's sweet.
One could say the same of your children and grandchildren.

Ezzie said...

Odd post. Considering what happened, it was actually quite an impressive and refreshing bit, where he's facing right up to a gay woman and responding that no, he doesn't think that marriage should be accorded to her. He could have played many games here and did not.

Tigerboy said...

There are two completely different things meant by the term "marriage."

One involves the religious rite of joining two souls together, "in the sight of God."

The other involves the recognition of a legal domestic partnership by our secular government.

Both are called "marriage."

If the situation were that ONLY "religious marriages" were called "marriages", and all heterosexual unions recognized by the secular government were called something else, such as "civil unions", then extending the right to a "civil union" to homosexuals would be equitable and fair.

However, because the situation is that heterosexual unions recognized by the secular government are called "marriages", to deny that title to homosexuals is discriminatory.

None of this is about the religious rite of marriage. This is about the secular, legal right to marriage. The right enjoyed by heterosexuals across this land.

America does not extend rights to SOME of her tax-paying, law-abiding citizens and deny them to others.

The Candy Man said...

I love the clip! It's nice to see Ellen not pulling her punches. You are completely right... all he could say is, "Duh, I think marriage is between a man and a woman..." without being able to justify it on any level!

I'm tired of pulling punches with these alter kockers and their weak, foolish attempt to overlay religion on our democracy. If McCain had any real guts, he'd admit that she is completely right.
It's sad that both McCain, and even Obama, don't have the guts to stand up for what they know is right.

We have an obligation to fight this kind of crap, to call these bigots and religious zealots out on their nonsense, to make them see the error of their ways. For they know not what they do.

James Pate said...

Well, if Dr. Dobson were on the show, he wouldn't equivocate, and he's actually give some arguments.

asher said...

Yes...that certainly was a good line by Ellen...I'm sure her 40 male writers who attempt to make her funny and interesting patted themselves on the back when they came up with it.

At least McCain came on the show knowing full well she'd bring the subject up....were she not an avowed lesbian one might wonder what appeal she has at all.

Of course, since same sex marriage is legal in Mass, Ellen could have married her hot partner there years ago, but apparenly the trip was too much of an expense.

You have to applaud folks who think same sex marriage is between folks who love each other. I just don't understand why they can't extend this logic to Muslims and Mormons who want multiple wives,
same sex brothers, sisters and other family members, children under 12, and of course, those who simply want a community of family.

The only folks same sex marriage will benefit, should it become legal, are the lawyers. You've got your pre-nup, post-nup, custody battles, alimony settlements, and property negotiations. This is something like 5% of the population that lawyers in this country could make a mint on.

BEAJ said...

Scott Bidstrup clobbers all those against gay marriage in this piece.

Aside from the piece, the first marriages were performed by the ancient Egyptians. Mostly as an attempt to keep Blue Blood's lineage Blue. Brothers and sisters married, so did fathers and daughters.
Then as marriage spread, it mostly involved the buying of women as if they were slaves.
If you want to get all biblical, David the fictitious Abraham had multiple wives, and God never said it was a bad thing.
The idea that legalizing gay marriage leads to incest, beastiality, or polygamy is a crock and scare tactics. Fact is, it aint happening in Europe.
As far as making a farce out of marriage, Fundy Baptists and Jews lead the way in divorce rates. Another fact, they divorce at a higher rate than us heathen atheists.
Finally, Jesse Ventura sums it up quite nicely in this clip.

Holy Hyrax said...

Candyman,

Do you realize its people like you that make me want to stay away from anything the left might suggest? All you can do is throw out names, slogans and bumper stickers.

Bigots???

Zealots???

Have you ever once put aside your hatred of religion and tried to objectively look at the fact that us religious people do not wish to force you to wear a kippa, or say hail mary? Have you ever thought that perhaps those of us that are against same sex marriage are against it simply because for us, a union as important as marriage should stay between man and woman and thats all?

Do you realize nobody is putting their religion over your democracy. Stop painting everything with such a broad brush. Even in a democracy, people feel there are limits and if ALL a democracy is to you is the will of the people alone, than by all means this court ruling goes against that.

>As far as making a farce out of marriage, Fundy Baptists and Jews lead the way in divorce rates.

And??? So what??? You think given time gays are not going to divorce??

And I agree with Asher. The same privelages should be given to polygomists. How dare anyone put their values upon their civil rights.

Jewish Atheist said...

ezzie:

McCain was polite and not altogether evasive, which is nice, but I think the fact that he couldn't come up with a single reason gay marriage should be illegal that wouldn't have sounded completely ludicrous said to an actual gay person's face is itself pretty damning, I think.


Have you ever thought that perhaps those of us that are against same sex marriage are against it simply because for us, a union as important as marriage should stay between man and woman and thats all?

"Because I said so?" That really is the best the anti-gay-marriage people can do, it seems.

All the arguments against are either untrue (e.g. it's bad for the kids, hurts the institution of marriage), irrelevant (many gays don't even want to marry!), not grounds for justifying a U.S. law (against Allah's wishes! it's gross!), or just sputtering (but it's WRONG! it's against tradition!)

Holy Hyrax said...

>irrelevant

Purely subjective

>not grounds for justifying a U.S. law

Says who? you?

>or just sputtering (but it's WRONG! it's against tradition!)

This is a matter of values. Values that we don't share. Call it sputtering is plain stupid.

Orthoprax said...

JA,

""Because I said so?" That really is the best the anti-gay-marriage people can do, it seems."

I've recently been giving this more thought and I think what bothers me about gay marriage is the confusion it creates about what it means to be married. Civilization has a long history understanding what obligations a husband has and what obligations a wife has and how they complement and balance each other - especially with respect to child rearing.

But gay marriage throws this all in a loop and says that there's no real difference between men and women. That a wife isn't necessary and two men can work just as well. And I just don't think that's true. For society to stamp a homosexual relationship 'marriage' - as equivalent to a male/female bond - without that foundational social understanding seems like a reckless abandonment of what marriage means.

Private citizens can play 'baseball' with tennis rackets if they please, but it could ruin our national pastime if MLB accepted it into the rulebook.

BEAJ said...

HH, I'm sure gays will get divorced too, maybe the numbers will be similar to Jewish or Baptist divorces.
As far as Polygamy goes....Bigamy is illegal in all 50 states. Maybe the laws should be revisited though. The laws came into place to deal with the brainwashed Mormons. Perhaps if bigamy occurs with consenting adults who are not religious, it should be acknowledged if it doesn't put any extra drain on the social system.
Oh, and traditional marriages involve buying wife.
The will of the people argument doesn't work either. This is an issue that shouldn't even be voted on. Gays are taxpayers, and have a right to have their marriage acknowledged by the government.
Should segregation be subject to the will of the people too? I'm sure there are still places in the South that would vote for separate schools for blacks and whites.
How about if a town votes against letting Jews live in the town. Again, there might be the odd town that would vote against it, if not today, definitely 50 years ago.

Orthoprax, do you realize how many single parent homes there are in America? A woman alone or a man alone can bring up a child.

And if you are looking for "marriage" to be a special word for just opposite sex couples, it is really silly if that is your gripe.
No matter what, society in the near future will still say "gay marriage" versus "marriage" much like society differentiates couples of the same race from biracial couples.

Jewish Atheist said...

Orthoprax:

I've recently been giving this more thought and I think what bothers me about gay marriage is the confusion it creates about what it means to be married. Civilization has a long history understanding what obligations a husband has and what obligations a wife has and how they complement and balance each other - especially with respect to child rearing.

Okay, that's a reasonable argument, but I don't think it works for several reasons. First, I'm skeptical that the "confusion" you speak of would be remotely significant, especially as compared to all the other factors that have already pretty much ended the "traditional" gender roles in America over the last couple of generations.

Second, I've seen no evidence -- I mean zero -- that gay couples are any worse at raising children than straight ones are.

Third, civilization has a long history understanding all kinds of things about families that we no longer go along with -- arranged marriages, child marriages, (severe) corporal punishment, the son following the father's trade, the woman obeying the husband, polygamy, etc., etc., etc. I understand the fear of messing with what works, but we can't let that fear hold us back from moving forward. This is especially true when it comes to various forms of discrimination, when we already "know" that tradition has been wrong on so many kinds of that before. Tradition was wrong about interracial marriage, it was wrong about women's suffrage, etc. So I think we should take its view on gay couples in the same light.

Orthoprax said...

Beaj,

"Orthoprax, do you realize how many single parent homes there are in America? A woman alone or a man alone can bring up a child."

Of course they can, but that's surely not ideal. And as a society we'd want to minimize it.

"And if you are looking for "marriage" to be a special word for just opposite sex couples, it is really silly if that is your gripe."

Why? That's exactly the issue which that California court ruled on. California already offered civil unions to gay couples, but the court said that wasn't enough.



JA,

As far as I know, the data regarding the children of gay couples is inconclusive, but really I'm arguing on intuitive grounds. You don't sense that there's a natural biological and social balance in a heterosexual relationship as opposed to a homosexual one where things are ad hoc and role played?

I think you'd agree that men and women are different and bring different things to a relationship. Things that two people of the same gender cannot. I can't predict what the consequences of society ignoring these differences may be but it's enough for me to be unenthuisiastic about gay marriage.

Holy Hyrax said...

>Maybe the laws should be revisited though.

Of course they should. As well as siblings marring, perhaps when they pass the age of conceiving a child. I don't see how you can discriminate against one tax payer and not another.

>The will of the people argument doesn't work either.

IF you are going to argue for a democracy (as Candyman did) then sure it works. IF 90% of the people want to segregate against blacks or Jews,in a perfect democracy why shouldn't they amend the Constitution for that?? You can't argue a democracy and set the limits where YOU want it? That's what I believe. I also do not believe this is the same as comparing it to old laws built on segregating each other. Laws which were built on simple hate. I do not believe those that are against gay marriage are haters (though there are). It comes by a want to keep a very important part of mankind to the way man has always practiced it. Between a man and a woman. And yes, you can bring up a man marrying multiple woman in the past. But the fact is, it was never a man marrying multiple men. I believe a man and woman bring something unique to the relationship and with it shape the environment and future children.

You bring up the fact that there are single parents out there. I do not believe this is an ideal. A boy that is raised by a single mother is missing much with a father figure in his life. You don't need to go far to see the trouble this is causing in some of the urban black communnities.




Orthoprax, do you realize how many single parent homes there are in America? A woman alone or a man alone can bring up a child.

And if you are looking for "marriage" to be a special word for just opposite sex couples, it is really silly if that is your gripe.
No matter what, society in the near future will still say "gay marriage" versus "marriage" much like society differentiates couples of the same race from biracial couples.

Holy Hyrax said...

Sorry, I forgot to delete the last two paragraphs from my response.

Tigerboy said...

I don't, for one moment, believe that two loving, committed males, or two loving, committed females, are anything less than wonderful parents for their particular child-rearing situation.

Orthoprax only wants children raised in situations that are "ideal."

What's the cut-off point regarding the parent's wealth? Certainly, raising children with a comfortable income is more "ideal" than raising children in poverty.

Orthoprax, at what income level should we start issuing marriage licenses? 60K? 80K? Kids are pretty expensive.

What about the handicapped? Being raised by parents who can run and play ball, who do not require the use of a wheelchair, or a seeing eye dog, is more "ideal", right? So, no marriage for them? Is that what you are saying?

I think this argument WAS made against interracial marriage. "Think about how this will affect your kids!!"

There are millions of children in this country. How many of them are being raised in circumstances you would term "less than ideal"?

Two loving people (or even one strong person), committed to the health and welfare of those children, sounds ideal to me.

Jewish Atheist said...

ortho:

As far as I know, the data regarding the children of gay couples is inconclusive, but really I'm arguing on intuitive grounds. You don't sense that there's a natural biological and social balance in a heterosexual relationship as opposed to a homosexual one where things are ad hoc and role played?

I don't think that permanent pair-bonding is "natural" at all in humans, although I'm in favor of it personally. Anyway, given that people vary so much, I can't see how restricting gays from marrying makes any more sense on those grounds than preventing straight women with short hair or straight men who listen to Michael Bolton from marrying, particularly in the total absence of data indicating that gay marriage is bad for children, despite much research.

All relationships are "ad hoc" and "role played." In a general sense, I think it's an awful idea for government to attempt social engineering by declaring who can and cannot get married without a very good reason (i.e. consent issues or biological danger in the case of incest.)

And what about the modern RW Orhtodox practice of the man learning and the woman working? Surely that should be illegal too, right? My point is that even if something isn't necessarily ideal, it's not the government's place to step in and make it illegal.


HH: Of course they should. As well as siblings marring, perhaps when they pass the age of conceiving a child. I don't see how you can discriminate against one tax payer and not another.

Are you really changing your mind here, or are you just trying to be clever? Either there are good legal arguments not to allow siblings to marry or there aren't. Either way, it's a separate question from gay marriage.

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

"Orthoprax only wants children raised in situations that are "ideal.""

And you don't? You'd prefer that children be raised in non-ideal situations? That makes sense.

We live in a non-ideal world and so we do have to deal with what reality throws at us, but we can shape our society in ways which promote better situations over worse ones. I would think this would be extremely obvious.

I'm not saying gays _can't_ raise children. They have and do and will. I'm just not sure we, as a society, should promote that living arrangement as equivalent to heterosexual relationships.



JA,

"Anyway, given that people vary so much, I can't see how restricting gays from marrying makes any more sense on those grounds than preventing straight women with short hair or straight men who listen to Michael Bolton from marrying, particularly in the total absence of data indicating that gay marriage is bad for children, despite much research."

The key to understand here is that our free society is not restricting the relationships, it's making a quality judgement of what is marriage and what is not. As I referred briefly before, if there is, in fact, something unique about the male/female bond which cannot be replicated in same-sex relationships then why should they share the same title?

Do you really believe that men and women are interchangeable like that?

"In a general sense, I think it's an awful idea for government to attempt social engineering by declaring who can and cannot get married without a very good reason"

I wouldn't mind if government got out of the marriage business altogether. Perhaps it should.

"My point is that even if something isn't necessarily ideal, it's not the government's place to step in and make it illegal."

Like I said, they're relationships are patently not illegal. What is not permitted (except in Mass.) is the assumption of a classification dedicated solely to heterosexual commitments.

Tigerboy said...

. . . "Orthoprax only wants children raised in situations that are "ideal".
. . . And you don't? You'd prefer that children be raised in non-ideal situations? That makes sense."

My definition of "ideal" is not nearly as restricted as yours. It does not judge-as-deficient and eliminate people based upon a hateful, supernatural ideology. On ideology based in superstition, with ZERO empirical evidence regarding it's veracity. On ideology with a rich history of discriminating against people.

I'll assume your silence on my question about "no marriage licenses for the poor or the handicapped" to be agreement.

"No marriage licenses for ANY but those I deem to be perfect parents" is your battle cry. Right?

I would see a situation where children are being raised with SUPERSTITION to be less than ideal, but I wouldn't claim it to be the proper function of my government to step in and regulate that.

. . . "I wouldn't mind if government got out of the marriage business altogether. Perhaps it should."

But until that happens, all law-abiding, tax-paying citizens are entitled, not just the ones religious folk like.

Tigerboy said...

How about people over a certain age? No marriage license to those over 45?

They might not represent the be ideal situation in which to raise children.

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

If you're going to insist on shadow boxing instead of responding to my actual statements then I fail to see what your theatrics accomplish.

It doesn't take anything supernatural to see the long known fact that males and females are different and both give something to a relationship which single sex arrangements do not. Or do you think men and women are interchangeable?

With respect to adoptions, yes, of course society ought to screen all potential adoptees to ensure that the most ideal arrangements are met. This would include taking things like age, financial situation, physical mobility and social living arrangements into consideration. You disagree?

Jewish Atheist said...

Ortho:

The key to understand here is that our free society is not restricting the relationships, it's making a quality judgement of what is marriage and what is not. As I referred briefly before, if there is, in fact, something unique about the male/female bond which cannot be replicated in same-sex relationships then why should they share the same title?

Do you really believe that men and women are interchangeable like that?


I really believe that any given gay couple can be just as good at raising a family as any given straight couple. If I were wrong, there should be some data to show that. It's not like people haven't been trying to prove that for years now.

I wouldn't mind if government got out of the marriage business altogether. Perhaps it should.

Whole different discussion. As long as it's in the business of marriage, though, it needs to provide equal access.

Like I said, they're relationships are patently not illegal. What is not permitted (except in Mass.) is the assumption of a classification dedicated solely to heterosexual commitments.

But it's an arbitrary and unjust line. Plenty of straight couples are clearly less qualified to raise families than plenty of gay ones. Do we ban violent ex-felons from marrying? Workaholic surgeons? If the government draws a line, it must have a valid reason to do so. Otherwise, it's clear discrimination.

Regarding men and women and the difference between, can you provide specific things that hetero couples can do that homo ones cannot? The only thing I can even conceive of is gender-specific role modeling.

Tigerboy said...

"With respect to adoptions . . . . You disagree?"

We're not talking about adoptions.

You want to prevent marriages based on these criteria.

Tigerboy said...

Am I correct?

You want to screen for age, income, and physical infirmity, regarding marriage licenses?

Or, is it that you only want to say "no" to the queers?

Orthoprax said...

JA,

"I really believe that any given gay couple can be just as good at raising a family as any given straight couple. If I were wrong, there should be some data to show that. It's not like people haven't been trying to prove that for years now."

Well, as I was saying, it's more pervasive than that. It's not just a matter of children, it's a whole culture based on assumptions of what a marriage is and to what the partners are committing themselves. When this becomes unclear then there may be all sorts of unpredictable consequences down the line. Extreme feminism which insists that men and women are equal in every way similarly adds to the confusion.

"Whole different discussion. As long as it's in the business of marriage, though, it needs to provide equal access."

If the point of the government getting involved in marriage in the first place was to strengthen an existing institution then it hardly makes sense for the government to stay involved if its involvement harms the institution.

"But it's an arbitrary and unjust line. Plenty of straight couples are clearly less qualified to raise families than plenty of gay ones."

Again, raising families is just one point in the larger whole.

"Regarding men and women and the difference between, can you provide specific things that hetero couples can do that homo ones cannot? The only thing I can even conceive of is gender-specific role modeling."

That's definitely part of it, but there are all sorts of subtle yet deeply influential things where having a man and woman in the home, with their different ways of thinking, issue approaching, problem solving and so on that seem to offer a more integrated and balanced relationship than one between two of the same gender. I'm no expert in these matters, but I've heard it from many and varied authorities that men and women each add something unique to a relationship.



Tiger,

"We're not talking about adoptions.
You want to prevent marriages based on these criteria."

I do? I said I was reluctant to permit same sex marriage because it could lead to a confusion between the typical parties of marriage and that would have deleterious effects on regular families.

"You want to screen for age, income, and physical infirmity, regarding marriage licenses?
Or, is it that you only want to say "no" to the queers?"

No, you misunderstood what I was saying.

Jewish Atheist said...

ortho:

Have you taken into account the fact that the lack of gay marriage directly and negatively impacts already existing families headed by gay parents? Preventing gay marriage doesn't turn gay people straight -- it just makes homosexual couples less stable, less secure, and more marginalized than necessary. How can you argue that it's better for kids to be with "unmarried" but monogamous and committed gay parents than for them to be with married monogamous and committed gay parents?

Tigerboy said...

Orthoprax:

I misunderstood nothing.

Of course you don't want to screen for age, income, etc. regarding marriage licenses. That would be grossly unfair.

But did you, or did you not, use some ill-defined argument, against gays being allowed to marry, that stated that the child-rearing situation was less than ideal? Somehow, to you, this less-than-ideal child-rearing situation justifies discrimination.

Why is your vague argument about men and women each bringing some special "something" into the marriage any different than claiming that two people must be below, or above, a certain age, or income, or the same race, or whatever?

Our government neither allows, nor disallows, marriage based on whether, or not, two people will have children.

Holy Hyrax said...

>Our government neither allows, nor disallows, marriage based on whether, or not, two people will have children.

Right. This ruling had nothing to do with the issue of children but the courting defining that it is discrimination. Hence, if the issue of children, are not what goes into the legal arguments (of discrimination) of whether or not marriage should be afforded to people, then multiple marriages as well as incest should be allowed.

>Are you really changing your mind here, or are you just trying to be clever? Either there are good legal arguments not to allow siblings to marry or there aren't. Either way, it's a separate question from gay marriage.

If, like BEAJ says its an issue of tax payers, then there are no good arguments. But you would agree tax paying is not how we decide on these issues.

Orthoprax said...

JA,

"Have you taken into account the fact that the lack of gay marriage directly and negatively impacts already existing families headed by gay parents?"

I don't see how calling their relationship one thing or another effects their stability or the welfare of minors in the household. I'm alright with granting gays civil unions with an approximate equivalency in government treatment, I just don't think what they have is a marriage.



Tiger,

"I misunderstood nothing."

Ok, if you insist.

"But did you, or did you not, use some ill-defined argument, against gays being allowed to marry, that stated that the child-rearing situation was less than ideal?"

No, that was a response to BEAJ regarding single-parent households. A non-ideal situation that should not be promoted by society.

"Why is your vague argument about men and women each bringing some special "something" into the marriage any different than claiming that two people must be below, or above, a certain age, or income, or the same race, or whatever?"

Because those things have no valid basis in established thought? Seriously, you don't think it true that the differences between men and women integrate in a relationship and create a good balance?

I know it's claimed by gay marriage supporters that homosexual unions are equally as good as heterosexual ones, but do you really think that's true?

"Our government neither allows, nor disallows, marriage based on whether, or not, two people will have children."

Good observation, but not the point of my argument. Thank you for demonstrating the shadow whom you're boxing with.

Tigerboy said...

Your entire argument is about your lack of support for gay marriage due to some perceived lack in two people of the same gender to raise a child.

How am I shadow boxing?

Jewish Atheist said...

I don't see how calling their relationship one thing or another effects their stability or the welfare of minors in the household.

Well, you're the one arguing that we should call their relationship something different. If that doesn't affect the stability of the union, what does it affect? You just want their kids to grow up knowing their parents have a "less-than-ideal" relationship?

I'm alright with granting gays civil unions with an approximate equivalency in government treatment, I just don't think what they have is a marriage.

Civil marriage is identical to a civil union except in name. Calling it something else serves no purpose but to stigmatize gay couples. And it tells gay kids that they are somehow less than straight kids, at the best that they are just less capable of being good parents, and at the worst, that they are second class citizens. Is that really the message we want the United States government to send?

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

"Your entire argument is about your lack of support for gay marriage due to some perceived lack in two people of the same gender to raise a child.
How am I shadow boxing?"

Um, 'cause that isn't my argument. Please review. My argument is that 'gay marriage' confuses what marriage ideals are and may harm the social interest in building heterosexual commitments.

This argument is valid if you believe heterosexual commitments bring something to the relationship that homosexuals do not. As you noted, marriages don't necessarily need to involve children.


JA,

"If that doesn't affect the stability of the union, what does it affect? You just want their kids to grow up knowing their parents have a "less-than-ideal" relationship?"

That's part of it. While there are some who really have a sexual fixation, there remains a much larger proportion of those who identify as 'gay' who really choose the lifestyle as they are attracted to both sexes. I know this is politically incorrect, but it's true.

If you acknowledge that heterosexual unions are superior then as a society we'd want to promote them - promote them over other social arrangements. But that's tough to do when the society prizes legal nominalism over sociological ideals.

"Civil marriage is identical to a civil union except in name. Calling it something else serves no purpose but to stigmatize gay couples. And it tells gay kids that they are somehow less than straight kids, at the best that they are just less capable of being good parents, and at the worst, that they are second class citizens."

No, they as individuals may be great - it is the social arrangement which is not equated. And it is a different arrangement - so why should it be called the same thing?

Jewish Atheist said...

ortho:

You still haven't justified the idea that government has a right to deny equal rights for social engineering, regardless of whether that engineering is ultimately beneficial or not.

Orthoprax said...

JA,

"You still haven't justified the idea that government has a right to deny equal rights for social engineering, regardless of whether that engineering is ultimately beneficial or not."

Ok. In that case then you're basically putting in question every progressive tax, every tax break based on owning a business or having a child, every affirmative action, every Indian reservation, and so on.

As I referred earlier, I'm sympathetic to the notion that government should get out of the marriage business altogether, but the task of social engineering has long since gained precedent in our country.

In any case though, do you acknowledge that it may in fact be in our nation's social interest to limit marriage?

Jewish Atheist said...

Ok. In that case then you're basically putting in question every progressive tax, every tax break based on owning a business or having a child, every affirmative action, every Indian reservation, and so on.

All of those things are questioned and should be. They are justified, correctly or not, on a case-by-case basis.

As I referred earlier, I'm sympathetic to the notion that government should get out of the marriage business altogether, but the task of social engineering has long since gained precedent in our country.

Again, that's a separate issue which does not change the fact that if government is in the business of marriage, it must live up to certain basic principles like equal protection.

In any case though, do you acknowledge that it may in fact be in our nation's social interest to limit marriage?

With respect to gay marriage? No, I don't believe that. I believe that any bisexuals who choose to marry heterosexually do not somehow outweigh the stigmatization of gay marriage and the de facto discrimination against gay people. I'm also skeptical that a bisexual choosing a member of the opposite sex is necessarily better (or worse) for anybody.

What do you say about interracial or interreligious marriage? Surely, you'd find one or both of those "less than ideal." Are they less ideal than gay marriage? Should they be illegal as well?

Orthoprax said...

JA,

"All of those things are questioned and should be. They are justified, correctly or not, on a case-by-case basis."

I agree. But my point is that the precedent is already there. Examples could easily be multiplied. If you think the government should not be involved in such things then that's a very different discussion.

"Again, that's a separate issue which does not change the fact that if government is in the business of marriage, it must live up to certain basic principles like equal protection."

And if the government is in the business of tax collecting then it must live up to basic principles like equal treatment. But probably like you, I understand the social benefit of progressive taxation.

If you don't think the government should be involved in such things as a matter of principle then it should not be involved in marrying anybody. Promoting pair-bonding is itself a form of social engineering.

"With respect to gay marriage? No, I don't believe that. I believe that any bisexuals who choose to marry heterosexually do not somehow outweigh the stigmatization of gay marriage and the de facto discrimination against gay people. I'm also skeptical that a bisexual choosing a member of the opposite sex is necessarily better (or worse) for anybody."

Ok, so here's our basic disagreement. I think binary heterosexual commitments are the best form of social organization and society has an interest in promoting them. I'm deeply skeptical of those who want to redefine marriage, pretending a man is the same as a woman and saying it's just as good.

"What do you say about interracial or interreligious marriage? Surely, you'd find one or both of those "less than ideal." Are they less ideal than gay marriage? Should they be illegal as well?"

Do the existence of such marriages redefine marriage? No. As such I don't consider them a threat to the existing institution.

Tigerboy said...

Orthoprax:

From your first post.
"Civilization has a long history understanding what obligations a husband has and what obligations a wife has and how they complement and balance each other - especially with respect to child rearing."

" . . . especially with respect to child rearing."

How in the world did I get the idea that you were arguing to keep marriage illegal for gays, based on issues of child-rearing?

If, now, you have changed your argument to one where you are saying that a dichotomy of genders provides some unspecified "specialness", not in regards to the raising of children, but rather, to the relationship itself, then I apologize. I DID misunderstand.

I misunderstood the full depth and breadth of your arrogance. Why do you think that society has any business, regarding the nature of masculine/feminine qualities in a private romantic relationship? There is no societal interest in evaluating some vague yen/yang aspect of a committed pair-bond. (We are so sorry Mr. Jones, Miss Smith. We cannot issue you a license to marry. We've decided that Mr. Jones doesn't have enough masculine mojo. We considered it, due to the fact that Miss Smith likes to fix cars, but ultimately, we decided no. Have a nice day.)

Who are you to decide that your heterosexual relationship is superior to that of a homosexual? Heterosexual people are not superior. By any measure. They are not superior. Their relationships are not superior. You may strongly believe in your own superiority. But, like any number of your opinions, there is no basis in reality. There is no evidence that homosexual relationships are, in any way, inferior. Let's assume that all people should be treated equally, under the law, shall we?

Society has an interest in promoting STABLE family units. (Lesbians are considerably more likely to be paired-for-life than gay men, or heterosexuals.)

Society has an interest in establishing and protecting certain standards, regarding how a child is raised. (When you were arguing about what's best for a child, you made no good case for the superiority of heterosexual parents, but, at least you were in an area where society has some business.)

These are your so-called "marriage ideals". Stability and provisions for the best interests of children. These are the ideals in which society has an interest to promote.

As long as there are families headed by homosexuals, society has an interest to recognize and promote that stability.

As long as the situation stands that this society provides marriage benefits to its heterosexual members, fairness dictates that it must make them available to its homosexual members.

And finally, regarding your absurd statement:

. . . "While there are some who really have a sexual fixation, there remains a much larger proportion of those who identify as 'gay' who really choose the lifestyle as they are attracted to both sexes."

There are SO MANY inaccurate aspects to it, I don't even know where to begin. Where do you get the testicular fortitude to make these types of statements, on topics about which you clearly haven't got a clue?

Jewish Atheist said...

ortho:

Ok, so here's our basic disagreement. I think binary heterosexual commitments are the best form of social organization and society has an interest in promoting them.

If that's the case, why isn't there any data that says so?

Tigerboy said...

Ortho, I have a question about your little social engineering project.

Do you envision the camps being set up right there in the Castro, or maybe somewhere outside of town, where there's a bit more room?

Nevada might be good.

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

"How in the world did I get the idea that you were arguing to keep marriage illegal for gays, based on issues of child-rearing?"

It is based in part on child rearing. That permitting gay marriage could harm the concept of marriage generally which would even more destabalize an institution that has been losing ground for the past 40 years. And _that_ would be bad for children.

My argument is based on secondary effects which nobody seems to think much about.

Indeed, I think the whole effort of turning marriage into mere business contract without social relevance or responsibility is deeply damaging to the institution.

Obscuring the differences between men and women (*the* key foundational understanding for a successful marriage) with legal nominalism will lead to weaker marriages.

"Who are you to decide that your heterosexual relationship is superior to that of a homosexual?"

Heterosexual relationships have been the bedrock of civilization for thousands of years and men and women are different. I'm not convinced you can swap genders and have something just as good.

Do you have any data that supports your contention?

"There are SO MANY inaccurate aspects to it, I don't even know where to begin."

Name one.

"Do you envision the camps being set up right there in the Castro, or maybe somewhere outside of town, where there's a bit more room?"

For someone so sure of your own opinion, you sure do like to be insulting and make obscene references. One might think you wouldn't need to do that if the facts were simply on your side.


JA,

"If that's the case, why isn't there any data that says so?"

As far as I know the issue is that there is biased methodology from both sides doing such studies and the data is altogether inconclusive. Intuitively though I think it makes sense. Why would you think that switching gender-based relationships would lead to equal outcomes? That only makes sense if you think men and women are intrinsically equal.

Jewish Atheist said...

Why would you think that switching gender-based relationships would lead to equal outcomes? That only makes sense if you think men and women are intrinsically equal.

See, the thing is, I don't see any evidence that the relationships are gender-based. It just so happens that most humans are straight, so most pair-bonds are straight. The hypothesis that the genders of the parents matters is not supported by any evidence I'm aware of, and therefore, to quote Laplace, I have no need of that hypothesis.

That only makes sense if you think men and women are intrinsically equal.

It's not like all men are like X and all women are like Y. There are statistical tendencies, of course, but unless you're arguing that actual penises and breasts are required for parenting, you're just dealing in hypotheticals -- whereas the downsides of keeping gay marriage illegal are ever-present and crystal clear.

Orthoprax said...

JA,

"The hypothesis that the genders of the parents matters is not supported by any evidence I'm aware of, and therefore, to quote Laplace, I have no need of that hypothesis."

Well, I'm no expert in these matters, but in the absence of reliable data going either way I don't know how we can get beyond this impasse.

"whereas the downsides of keeping gay marriage illegal are ever-present and crystal clear."

Really? Like what?


Here's an interesting thing I found. Gay marriage was legalized in the Netherlands in 2001 (first in the world). Note when the recent fall in marriage rates began. Coincidence?

http://www.cbs.nl/en-GB/menu/themas/bevolking/publicaties/artikelen/archief/2006/2006-2046-wm.htm

Tigerboy said...

Insulting?

I didn't claim superiority over a whole group of human beings. Human beings who, incidentally, have been put in camps, tortured, and murdered in recent generations.

Name one problem with your charming statement?

I'll name several:

Homosexual attraction is referred to as a "fixation." I imagine you might describe your own attractions in more tender terms.

Homosexuals are described as "choosing" to whom they have a sexual response. Please describe for me exactly how you chose to respond to women.

Homosexuals are described as making this particular choice because they are attracted to both sexes. An argument can be made that ALL humans have some form of attraction to members of the same, as well as to members of the opposite, sex. It is a matter of degree, and willingness to act upon those attractions. In terms of a fair discussion, homosexuals, by definition, are attracted to members of their same sex, to the exclusion of members of the opposite sex. A complimentary statement is true of heterosexuals. To claim a fluidity of attraction for homosexuals, implying that the choice was wrong, and possibly nefarious, while ignoring the fact that ANY such statements made of homosexuals are equally true of heterosexuals, demonstrates a clear bias.

Some people do have an ability to choose. That is an entirely different situation. You are describing bisexuals and you know that very well. Homosexuals do not make a choice, any more than do heterosexuals. Ask a few. Virtually 100% of the homosexuals I have asked this question, over a period of decades, have stated that they never made a choice.

That you would describe the number of homosexuals in this latter group, that is, the "chooser/bisexuals" versus the "homosexuals with a disturbing fixation", as being in the greater proportion, makes it sound like any of this represents the results from some valid study. The real situation is that you are making shit up.

Even if we assume that your absurd statement is true, that a significant proportion of homosexuals choose . . . that they would then use that ability to choose by joining one of the most reviled groups in the history of the world, is ludicrous.

It's amazing that a Jew cannot recognize his own hateful, marginalizing statements.

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

"I didn't claim superiority over a whole group of human beings."

Nor did I. But you've been seeking all along ways to shadow box instead of actually engaging with me.

"Homosexual attraction is referred to as a "fixation." I imagine you might describe your own attractions in more tender terms."

Perhaps, but heterosexual desires are biologically sound. What intrinsically differs a fetish from homosexuality? That two people can share it? Fundamentally, if a person is 100% homosexual then that's basically a psychological reproductive disorder. Same as if a person is afflicted with an extreme paraphilia.

"Homosexuals are described as "choosing" to whom they have a sexual response. Please describe for me exactly how you chose to respond to women."

No, I said that many who identify as gay are in fact bisexual. I believe this is correct.

I strongly suspect that many people develop homosexual desires in a similar way that other people develop paraphilias. And, in pointed example, many necrophiliacs tend to not just limit themselves to corpses. But that also doesn't mean they _chose_ to be attracted to corpses. The large majority of necrophiliacs probably choose not to act on their desires.

"while ignoring the fact that ANY such statements made of homosexuals are equally true of heterosexuals, demonstrates a clear bias."

No, I likewise recognise that many people who identify as heterosexual likely also have some bisexual desires.

"that they would then use that ability to choose by joining one of the most reviled groups in the history of the world, is ludicrous."

Reviled? Being gay is cool now.

"It's amazing that a Jew cannot recognize his own hateful, marginalizing statements."

It's distinctly unamazing that you read hate into the statements of someone you disagree with. Par for the course.

Tigerboy said...

Are you actually claiming that the above comments represent no statement of superiority over a large group of human beings?

You're deluded.

Good luck with your witch hunt.

Jewish Atheist said...

ortho:

Well, I'm no expert in these matters, but in the absence of reliable data going either way I don't know how we can get beyond this impasse.

What if we say that the burden of proof is on those who want to discriminate against an entire segment of the population?

Really? Like what?

Stigmatization and the lack of all the rights associated with marriage. You're trying to have it both ways with "civil unions." Either there is no significant difference, in which case what's the point, or there is, in which case you are demonstrably discriminating against gay people.

Here's an interesting thing I found. Gay marriage was legalized in the Netherlands in 2001 (first in the world). Note when the recent fall in marriage rates began. Coincidence?

Are you serious with that?

Orthoprax said...

Tiger,

"Are you actually claiming that the above comments represent no statement of superiority over a large group of human beings?"

Of course. I don't think I'm better than a homosexual or a necrophiliac. But that doesn't mean I think their desires are ideal.

"You're deluded."

I wonder really which one of us is the hateful one.



JA,

"What if we say that the burden of proof is on those who want to discriminate against an entire segment of the population?"

But that's just it. People didn't start having marriages in order to discriminate. In favor of equality it would likely be more prudent to separate marriage from government rather than possibly doing harm to marriage by extending its definition to places its never been.

"Stigmatization and the lack of all the rights associated with marriage. You're trying to have it both ways with "civil unions." Either there is no significant difference, in which case what's the point, or there is, in which case you are demonstrably discriminating against gay people."

The difference lies in title and how people culturally understand the term. The point has been raised that perhaps the government has no right to involve itself on that score. And also on that note, I'm not sure to what extent the government should involve itself in soothing stigmatizations.

"Are you serious with that?"

Not entirely, but there could be an association.

asher said...

It just occured to me. After a child raised by two mommies or two daddies committs some horrific crime in the future, the new defense will be "I was raised by a same sex couple". Wow....now this can be used as another excuse.