Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Gay Marriage: Worse Than Child Rape

The unhinged Family Research Council takes a step further down the road to darkness. Today, they argue that "rogue judges" who might legalize gay marriage between consenting adults are more a threat to marriage than people who forcibly conscript ten year old girls into arranged marriages. Think I'm kidding? Here's the quote:
Young girls in such arranged unions are victims. I am grateful to the Department of Justice for making this a priority by putting [Warren] Jeffs on the FBI's top ten. However, the Bush Administration needs to understand the threat to marriage is even greater from a rogue judge than it is from a fugitive pervert. The attempt by judicial activists to destroy marriage by defining it out of existence is more devastating than the plots of these polygamists.

Jeffs, for the record, is wanted for accessory to rape, sexual conduct with a minor, and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor. But them's small fries compared to the chaos if the gays are allowed to marry!



Anonymous said...

Take a deep breath. Read the quote again. Carefully. It says that judges are more of a threat to "marriage"--i.e. the institution of marriage--than arranged marriages. It does NOT say, or even imply what you wrote in your concluding paragraph.

Since we know that the institution of marriage has survived millenia of arranged marriages between very young people in a variety of cultures, but have no similar reservoir of evidence for how the institution of marriage will deal with gay marriage, the FRC claim has prima facie validity.

If you want to make an opposing claim of your own, go ahead, but don't twist someone else's words this way for the purpose of insulting them.

David Schraub said...

Unfortunately, this line of argument falls flat due to the FRC's own description of what the threat is. It says that, even though gay marriage obviously has no direct bearing on heterosexual marriage, because it is "counterfeit" it "devalues" heterosexual marriage. This type of abstract threat I don't feel depends on historical circumstance (including the historical societies where gay unions existed). The FRC is saying, presumably, that homosexual marriage is more of a devaluation than child rape disguised as marriage, and I do think that's disgusting. The claim here is clearly moral, not empirical (else, as your historical point indicates, we'd say that child rape is no threat whatsoever to marriage, and they are not making that claim). I think this buttressed by the (deliberate?) amiguity in the last sentence: "The attempt by judicial activists to destroy marriage by defining it out of existence is more devastating than the plots of these polygamists," where what the attempt is "devastating" to and what the "plots of these polygamists" are is both left unclear.

I think they did write it with sufficient amiguity to have plausible deniability. But I do think the overall point--that the FRC is more concerned (re: marriage) with gays getting married than it is with children getting raped in marriages--is both valid and disgusting.

Anonymous said...

[My long response to your response deleted, thankfully]


PS: I looked at the longer text the FRC website attaches to the press release--I think we're both wrong. :)

Here's what it says about the threat to marriage. Nowhere does it mention "devaluing" like you seem to believe. It says the threat is rogue judges redefining marriage. You claim that sentence is ambiguous. Okay, they clarify it in the longer paper. They say "media stories on same-sex marriage rarely address the fact that redefining marriage logically leads to the Missouri man and his mare." That's what they mean about rogue judges redefining marriage. They devote pages to criticizing polyamory. If we can define marriage any way we want, they say, why not a farmer and his sheep? Hmm...maybe we shouldn't go there.

In any case, it turns out the FRC is actually really worried about Jeffs. According to the longer paper, he's even worse than two homosexuals getting together. Their point is that allowing gay marriage will lead to more Jeffs!!

So that sentence from the press release you chose not to include about his crimes being "grevious" was actually key. They're grevious--and gay marriage will, by opening the judical door, lead to more such crimes.

So...they may be streching for an argument, but they aren't the sickos you accuse them of being.

Bamberg said...

The FRC isn't that tough on child marriage because the institution they are defending, traditional marriage, has never been a contract between equals.
Gay marriage is, by defination, a contract between equals. I suspect that the institution the FRC is actually defending is male superiority.