Last week a gay civil-unions bill passed the New Hampshire House of Representatives by close to a 2-1 margin, and the Senate has begun hearing arguments on the subject. Naturally, this has already resulted in some especially gaseous output.
To me the heart of the matter is the grounds for opposing gay marriage or gay unions. Certainly, these would have to be valid and supportable using basic reasoning by those who are anti.
Read the quotes from Diane Murphy Quinlan, chancellor of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Manchester, here and here.
“Two persons of the same gender, no matter how loving and nurturing their relationship may be, cannot fulfill the responsibilities or the obligations of a husband and wife.”
Really? Got any evidence for that? See, my understanding is that in Vermont, California, New Jersey and Connecticut (which legally recognize gay unions) and even in Massachusetts (which allows gays to actually marry), there has been no widespread rending of the so-called moral fabric. Straights are still getting engaged and married with aplomb, HIV and crime rates have not soared, and no one is being jailed for not liking queers. So what’s the story, Ms. Quinlan?
Oh, what’s that? You’re talking out of your ass? My bad; I forgot you represent the Diocese.
It’s great to see New Hampshire gamely act in accordance with humanistic values while so many states are still looking for the smoke on the battlefields at Antietam. I suppose the state’s strong libertarian streak may be partly responsible. But the Manchester Union Leader remains a chancre on the junk of the state. Not only does it continue braying about the evils of gaiety, but its editors elected to run this as an editorial on Easter Sunday. Never mind that non-Christians might take umbrage at an excerpt from the New Testament; it’s plain lazy to cut and paste from the Bible into an opinion column, and especially dumb when the Resurrection may be the most grandiose of the “are you f*cking kidding me?” claims Christianity makes. “Just you wait,” I’m told. “You can talk smack now, but when He returns, you’ll know it!” Well, now that you put it that way, I’m a-scairt shatless.
There are several things the holy rollers refuse to acknowledge besides the proper use of English. One is that their Biblical ideas regarding civil unions are irrelevant to pertinent legislative measures. A civil union is a strictly secular contract. The very reason these exist was because religious people were alarmed at the prospect of the sacred institution of marriage (quit laughing!) being overrun by unrepentant sinners joined in officially sanctioned faggotry.
The thing is, the righteous faithful are never satisfied. You can agree to absurdly exempt their properties from taxation, to make all sorts of special provisions and ad hoc arrangements such as “civil unions” so that their hackneyed sense of morality and their institutions remain officially untarnished, and it’s never enough. They simply don’t want homosexuality acknowledged or accepted and the Quinlan harpy exemplifies this obvious fact. They want their ethos superimposed on everyone’s rights.
The second, greater problem is that Catholicism, like all sects, is a bubbling crock of shit and its ideas are not only not legally applicable to non-Catholics, but are senseless in any context. This point, however, is not likely to persuade the Diocese of Manchester.
I’m a straight guy. I understand that millions of Americans are gay. They can’t do anything about it, but even if they could, so what? Who or what is being harmed by their bumpin’ of uglies? I’ve had hyperreligious people tell me I’m going to hell for fornication; in the past all I could do was gape and chuckle, but these days, having become more cognizant of the fact that loads of incurious people actually listen to and believe this balorkey, I’m apt to loose a caustic verbal shitstream of epic proportions, albeit while still chortling. I don’t care what gays do; I couldn’t care. I cannot for the life of me understand why anyone believes that other consenting adults in loving relationships should not be able to receive the same benefits as others when the only difference is in the plumbing.
As for marriage being primarily a vehicle for procreation, screw that noise too. Promising to breed is not part of anyone’s marriage vows.
If (as is the case) people are simply offended, tough shit. Grow up, mind your own business, and quit equating your gut reaction with God’s disapproval, not that there’s a discernible difference. Stupidity is offensive, but you don’t see anyone calling for tests of intellect in order to have children or take part in civic affairs such as voting. When someone — the parent of a gay child, no less — says,“This issue has been settled by God thousands of times … if this lifestyle was a sin [in Biblical times], then it is a sin today,” he should be laughed off the public stage, perhaps pityingly, perhaps not.
Look: If there were tenable reasons for excluding civil unions, the most begodded people in the world would have every right and every sound reason to broach them. But there aren’t, and so we hear vacuous whining instead. This, people, is what the god-free dislike most about religion, and spare me the crap about how not everyone of a given faith is a zealot. If you haven’t figured out why this is a trvially hapless defense, and that there’s never a shortage of people who openly admit to opposing things outside their own spheres of meaningful concern solely on the basis of THE LORD, then I can’t help you.