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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Deconstruction of Marriage

The only question worth asking about gay marriage is whether anyone on the left would care about this crusade if it didn't come with the privilege of bulldozing another civilizational institution.

Gay marriage is not about men marrying men or women marrying women, it is about the
deconstruction of marriage between men and women. That is a thing that many men and women of one generation understand but have trouble conveying to another generation for whom marriage has already largely been deconstructed.

The statistics about the falling marriage rate tell the tale well enough. Marriage is a fading institution. Family is a flickering light in the evening of the West.

The deconstruction is destruction. Entire countries are fading away, their populations being replaced by emigrants from more traditional lands whose understanding of the male-female relationship is positively reactionary. These emigrants may lack technology or the virtues of civilization, and their idea of marriage resembles slavery more than any modern ideal, but it fulfills the minimum purpose of any group, tribe or country-- it produces its next generation.

The deconstruction of marriage is not a mere matter of front page photos of men kissing. It began with the deconstruction of the family. Gay marriage is only one small stop on a tour that includes rising divorce rates, falling childbirth rates and the abandonment of responsibility by twenty and even thirty-somethings.

Each step on the tour takes apart the definition and structure of marriage until there is nothing left. Gay marriage is not inclusive, it is yet another attempt at eliminating marriage as a social institution by deconstructing it until it no longer exists.

There are two ways to destroy a thing. You can either run it at while swinging a hammer with both hands or you can attack its structure until it no longer means anything.

The left hasn't gone all out by outlawing marriage, instead it has deconstructed it, taking apart each of its assumptions, from the economic to the cooperative to the emotional to the social, until it no longer means anything at all. Until there is no way to distinguish marriage from a temporary liaison between members of uncertain sexes for reasons that due to their vagueness cannot be held to have any solemn and meaningful purpose.

You can abolish democracy by banning the vote or you can do it by letting people vote as many times as they want, by letting small children and foreigners vote, until no one sees the point in counting the votes or taking the process seriously. The same goes for marriage or any other institution. You can destroy it by outlawing it or by eliminating its meaningfulness until it becomes so open that it is absurd.

Every aspect of marriage is deconstructed and then eliminated until it no longer means anything. And once marriage is no longer a lifetime commitment between a man and a woman, but a ceremony with no deeper meaning than most modern ceremonies, then the deconstruction and destruction will be complete.

The deconstruction of marriage eroded it as an enduring institution and then as an exclusive institution and finally as a meaningful institution. The trendy folk who claim to be holding off on getting married until gay marriage is enacted are not eager for marriage equality, they are using it as an excuse for an ongoing rejection of marriage.

Gay marriage was never the issue. It was always marriage.

In the world that the deconstructionists are striving to build, there will be marriage, but it will mean nothing. Like a greeting card holiday, it will be an event, but not an institution. An old ritual with no further meaning. An egotistical exercise in attention-seeking and self-celebration with no deeper purpose. It will be a display every bit as hollow as the churches and synagogues it takes place in.

The deconstruction of marriage is only a subset of the deconstruction of gender from a state of being to a state of mind. The decline of marriage was preceded by the deconstruction of gender roles and gay marriage is being succeeded by the destruction of gender as anything other than a voluntary identity, a costume that one puts on and takes off.

Destroying gender roles was a prerequisite to destroying gender. Each deconstruction leads naturally to the next deconstruction with no final destination except total deconstruction.

Gay marriage is not a stopping point, just as men in women's clothing using the ladies room is not a stopping point. There is no stopping point at all.

The left's deconstruction of social institutions is not a quest for equality, but for destruction. As long as the institutions that preceded it exist, it will go on deconstructing them until there is nothing left but a blank canvas, an unthinking anarchy, on which it can impose its perfect and ideal conception of how everyone should live.

Equality is merely a pretext for deconstruction. Change the parameters of a thing and it ceases to function. Redefine it and expand it and it no longer means anything at all. A rose by any other name might smell as sweet, but if you change 'rose' to mean anything that sticks out of the ground, then the entire notion of what is being discussed has gone and cannot be reclaimed without also reclaiming language.

The left's social deconstruction program is a war of ideas and concepts. Claims of equality are used to expand institutions and ways of living until they are so broad as to encompass everything and nothing. And once a thing encompasses everything, once a rose represents everything rising out of the ground, then it also represents nothing at all.

Deconstruction is a war against definitions, borders and parameters. It is a war against defining things by criminalizing the limitation of definitions. With inclusivity as the mandate, exclusivity, in marriage, or any other realm, quickly meets with social disapproval and then becomes a hate crime. If the social good is achieved only through maximum inclusivity and infinite tolerance, then any form of exclusivity, from property to person to ideas, is a selfish act that refuses the collective impulse to make all things into a common property with no lasting meaning or value.

As Orwell understood in 1984, tyranny is essentially about definitions. It is hard to fight for freedom if you lack the word. It is hard to maintain a marriage if the idea no longer exists. Orwell's Oceania made basic human ideas into contradictory things. The left's deconstruction of social values does the same thing to such essential institutions as marriage; which becomes an important impermanent thing of no fixed nature or value.

The left's greatest trick is making things mean the opposite of what they do. Stealing is sharing. Crime is justice. Property is theft. Each deconstruction is accompanied by an inversion so that a thing, once examined, comes to seem the opposite of what it is, and once that is done, it no longer has the old innate value, but a new enlightened one.

To deconstruct man, you deconstruct his beliefs and then his way of living. You deconstruct freedom until it means slavery. You deconstruct peace until it means war. You deconstruct property until it means theft. And you deconstruct marriage until it means a physical relationship between any group of people for any duration. And that is the opposite of what marriage is.

The deconstruction of marriage is part of the deconstruction of gender and family and those are part
of the long program of deconstructing man. Once each basic value has been rendered null and void, inverted and revealed to be random and meaningless, then man is likewise revealed to be a random and meaningless creature whose existence requires shaping by those who know better.

The final deconstruction eliminates nation, religion, family and even gender to reduce the soul of man to a blank slate waiting to be written on.

That is what is at stake here. This is not a struggle about the right of equality, but the right of definition. It is not about whether men can get married, but whether marriage will mean anything at all. It is about preserving the shapes and structures of basic social concepts that define our identities in order to preserve those very concepts, rather than accepting their deconstruction into nullification.

The question on the table is whether the institutions that give us meaning will be allowed to retain that meaning. And that question is a matter of survival. Societies cannot survive without definitions. Peoples do not go on existing through the act of occupying space. The deconstruction of identity is also the destruction of identity.

And that is what we are truly fighting against.

113 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for peeling back a few layers and exposing the rotten core of the argument.

Carlos Perera said...

Positively brilliant: This is the most incisive analysis I have read of the political agenda underlying the redefinition of marriage . . . to render it meaningless as a core social institution. And, as you point out, reconstructing marriage is only part of a much larger subversive project to overcome the cultural inertia that stands in the way of the Left's restructuring of social institutions to fit the ideological fancies of those who hope to wield absolute power over us. Such fancies will tend to change over time, depending on the whims of those in charge, as, for instance, Lenin overturned existing (but laxly enforced) Russian laws against sodomy in 1917, only to have Stalin enact even stricter (and more strictly enforced) ones in 1934.

The fundamental point is not that Stalin reinstated anti-sodomy laws, but that by 1934 he was able to work his will on a Soviet society which had no institutions independent of the state, hence no impediment--other than physical and economic limitations--to the exercise of state power (and, of course, _l'état, c'était Stalin_, by that time).

ericcs said...

Daniel, with this essay you've cut to the heart of the matter. Quite frankly, this program of the left sounds like something Satan has devised, in his attempt to usurp God and take control of humanity.

And the choices for each one of us??? Resist, fight, run away, or succumb. It also would be nice to think that God is aware of our plight, and could lend a hand.

Anonymous said...

This is the clearest argument about the effects of deconstruction I have read. Thank you.

Dennis Latham said...

Great article. We can see it happening each day as the prison bars close around us. I can see it always in the faces of hardcore Liberal women, a basic unhappiness, a pinched look that is the same in all of them and quite ugly. They despise the normal definition of happy as they despise anyone who doesn't agree with their narrow vision of agreeing with everything they say. I don't think we can stem the tide without major upheaval. The absurd has gone on too long.

Anonymous said...

Brilliant!

AG said...

To me, I see the current flare up (pardon the pun) as a convenient distraction to protect the Left's favorite but ultimately the Nations worst President. I think Gay marriage has as much to do with equality as the infamous video had to do with Benghazi.

Just like a gay man, if I were to marry a man for what ever reason, it wouldn't be recognized federally. Of course I have no desire to marry a man, but what if I found that my best friend, who was at one time my roommate needed health insurance. Even to this day I prefer his company over my wife's but only because he doesn't nag as much.

I live in Massachusetts where the courts rewrote our state marriage laws to fit their agenda about a decade ago. Since then we have actually become the Gay Mecca, or as some call it "the Gay Vegas." At least once a month we have a story in the local paper about a Lesbian or Gay male couple suing some church or synagogue because the Pastor, Priest or Rabbi refused to perform a ceremony or some baker refused to bake a wedding cake with two men on the top of it. This is what is in store if it is regulated federally. It is not about freedom or equality, it is about ramming it down our throats and being as in your face as possible. There is no annual Heterosexual parade, and if heterosexuals ever behaved like they do in those parades they would be locked up for it.

Erosion of marriage isn't the only institution they plan on deconstructing. They will shut down any church or shull that refuses to comply. The real target is religious institutions. Once they weed out all the clergy that is unwilling to marry two men, then like marriage, they will mean nothing as well either. And we will all be attending a shull with some weirdo parading around signing hymns on his guitar and preaching about divesting and boycotting Israel. And Christians will be attending churches with rainbow flags on it that ignore actual Christianity.

NormanF said...

A Jewish Thomist?

St. Thomas Aquinas would have agreed with you! Nowadays, the essential categories and definition the Middle Ages took as verities of eternal truth nowadays are simply transient and temporary human inventions, to be changed whenever it happens to suit our whims.

The things we used to take for granted are dissolving right in front of our eyes.

Today the absurd is the new normal. Tomorrow, who knows?

Whether any one admits it or not, the West is now in the twilight of its existence. The acceptance of gay marriage is a sign of things to come.

What we lose in the end is not the Aristotelian concept of the body and gender qua body and gender but the Jewish-Christian concept of the soul qua soul.

We are in danger of losing both truth and beauty in the world and we don't realize at all the executioner's axe is about to fall on our civilization. That is the tragedy of our time.

Beth said...

In Kabbalism the Satan is also known as, the doubter. Substitute the word deconstruction for doubt and one can recognize the power and allure the Left has.

Daniel your writing is amazing, I love the way your mind works. Odd, your words bring me peace not turmoil. Funny, I thought accepting the truth of who the Left is would bring me more turmoil, go figure.

Anonymous said...

The last king of Carthage was a open cross-dresser. Wearing women's clothing in public. Whereas the Roman's had(at that point) a highly traditional and patrician society. When push came to shove the patriarchal and traditional society was triumphant. We are seeing the history repeat itself before our eyes, as weak feminine Western society is overrun by Islam and other more traditional societies.

Anonymous said...

Daniel gives good and thorough voice to the crisis of decay all around us. I voted for the first time in 1972 but was too young (21) and ignorant to understand the corruption underway in America. I dismissed people on the left as stuck in a bully's perpetual adolescence - consumed with self-centeredness and hissy-fitting against everything decent and civil - but I thought them to have no real power; the social turmoil they stirred would amount to nothing but cultural blips, I thought. Adults like me would never permit them to do any lasting damage to the our social foundation, our civility, our One Nation Under God. I believed that certain enduring truths embedded within our Constitution would keep the stuff of socialism and Marxism at bay. We adults had integrity, we were smart, and we believed in the basic goodness of our fellow Americans... Four decades later, I am ashamed that I was duped. The staggering trash heap delivered upon us by the left's bullies and punks is no cultural blip.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Beth; comforted that someone sees and articulates what I've been knowing to be true for some time. Thank you, Daniel - beautiful as always.

Megohm

Frank said...

You are right on target with this. In many ways, today's progressive left is much more effective in deconstructing the institutions of society than Lenin or Mao could with force; they have ubiquitous 24-hour media, and control over the best indoctrination tool of all, the public school system. When I see kids I know were raised in church to learn that marriage is a sacred union between a man and a woman glibly change their Facebook profile picture to show everyone they "support marriage equality", I know the progressives are achieving their indoctrination goals.

Anonymous said...

Daniel:
"With inclusivity as the mandate, exclusivity, in marriage, or any other realm, quickly meets with social disapproval and then becomes a hate crime."

Great synopsis of the manufactured cascade from honorable citizen to criminal, Daniel.

A related story from a mountain town in Arizona: 'bout the time Arizona's governor signed SB1070 into law, the town of Flagstaff altered its highway-side welcome signs from "World's First International Night Skies City" to add the new footer, "An Inclusive Community."

This was the town liberals' way of declaring their burb was a sanctuary city, and that its residents would 'include' anyone within the town limits.

Well, if you have to say you're inclusive, something tells me you're really not. And, the town's electioneering officials, media outlets and university-addled student-population is anything but tolerant.

Since I moved to the region in the early 'oughts, I have witnessed every tawdry method of rejection possible targeted at anyone who does not share the Democrats' vision for the area.

Don't want to pay higher property taxes? You're racist. Think wealthy ranchers should face competitive bidding for state-land grazing rights? You're "anti-government." Do you believe visitors from foreign countries should carry their passports with them? Then you're a bigot. Think marriage is an important institution worth defending? Then you are personna non-grata, Baby, and the region's politico's have a quiver full of defamatory arrows at the ready.

But, if you profess to believe that gender is an "artificial construct," or advertise your belief in global warming, or broadcast that you practice this or that deviant behavior, then it's likely you'll get a pass. In this milieu, full body tatoos are a token that buys you penance. A professed sympathy to hedonism buys you protection. The cohort of squeaky-clean, "conservative" lawyers and pols presiding over this wacky ledger will give you a pat on the head while they "include" you in their schemes.

Meanwhile, law-enforcement is sent off chasing petty thievery, domestic squabbles, and delinquent renters. When, instead, they should be arresting illegal immigrants, interdicting the town's contraband imports from California and Nevada, and rounding-up the white-collar criminals overseeing this mess.

Inclusivity, when bandied as public policy, becomes a racket. A truly American town, is by definition, already inclusive. Tagging on the popularized logo, "Inclusive," signals only that the town council prefers a tribalized framework, where certain prior "excludeds" such as undocumented immigrants, serial criminals on probation, and dred-locked pot-heads gain the advantages of the unassailable group-status we call "Vicitms."

Which, as we well know by now, plays right into the hands the urban Progressives' reflexive "community organizing" game. It's sad to see an American mountain town sink so low.
-steveaz

Anonymous said...

The deconstruction of everything might have more to do with orders from Hell than the Left.

Although ,I must admit,the Left offers a more palatable fig leaf....

The elite are not lefties, they are satanists...everything in God's creation has to be tampered with...from plant DNA to human...and every 'moral' and 'good' institution has to be replaced with a mockery of it...

IgorR said...

Daniel, do you think that this is a deliberate operation by the left, understood by some brain trust in a similar fashion as by you? In other ways, how deliberate vs. instinctual is this deconstruction?

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

it's what the left's agenda has always been. It's understood at the top, but most of those at the bottom likely think it's a fight for civil rights

Anonymous said...

a little redundant at the beginning but truly great...the gays are the great corrupter s...10 righteous men could not be found at the end of Sodom's existence...Daniel gives the argument sharp new light ...this needs to be distributed to all those who want to preserve the sanctity of our country and to do battle with the deviants...may G-d bless Daniel!

Anonymous said...

do we actually know who we are privileged to be reading? Daniel stands with the great philosophers OF ALL TIME

Anonymous said...

The gays are attacking the will of a soft, decadent country

IgorR said...

It has always been confusing to me how the power bases of the left change a great deal with the passage of time but the destructive agenda remains relatively constant. What is it that they really want? Is it always the same? Lenin was quite subtle and understood such things as the effect of taxation and inflation on "the bourgeoisie", and Soros is also quite intelligent. They both want(ed)personal power, but in somewhat different ways, as Soros is fundamentally a lot more financially driven, he is a chess player who likes to win and keep score, and Lenin probably needed a psychiatrist to figure it out.

I find it amazing that over multiple generations of the left, distributed as it is, sometimes with whole continents under its control, sometimes as just nascent revolutionary movements are able to execute this very subtle destructive strategy. They can't all want power for themselves because there are too many even at the top, and some are always to old to hope to become the top dog. This really makes one want to become a conspiracy theorist. All I need is some "Protocols of the Elders of the Left" to become convinced.

Anonymous said...

All these "reforms" are about deconstruction. For instance: the death penalty is being rolled back -- again. That issue is also not about the death penalty, but rather, it is about a return to a more permissive criminal justice system that emphasizes "rehabilitation" over "punishment." We tried that as a country in the 60's and 70's, when there was a nation-wide ban on capital punishment. Violent crime was rampant, and there was no "victims' rights" movement, and the revolving door of our prison system was letting the most heinous criminals back out with full knowledge that they were very likely to kill again. The judicial system demonstrated a depraved indifference to public safety.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Igor, try H.G. Wells open conspiracy

Kimmie said...

I see the big picture of what is actually happening, a very real spiritual war going on between good and evil. So many out here selling their souls to the devil for temporary earthly pleasures. A good deal of them honestly believe that it's all about some political game, us vs them, and they think they are winning and crushing the republican side when in reality, they're only helping to destroy their own selves in a pit of fire. They really do not see this big picture, they truly are that blind, all of them. I think these are people who had very little moral guidance growing up and became angry at God for things that happened to them in life, and those are the ones the devil can easily persuade in his way. I hope there are more to wake up and see the light of God and come to Him before it's too late.

mindRider said...

In the end only Judaism shall remain standing with it's eternal set of moral values and traditions based on Thora and all hate of the world shall be directed at it, as is already shown more and more. Parallel to the present day deconstruction of civilization by the left, as so brilliantly described by Daniel, apparently the core source of Hitler's virulent hate for Judaism was, in his own words spoken at a closed meeting with his top cronies, that Judaism was the bearer of conscience and as long as one Jew remained alive that conscience was still blocking Satan's victory.

Anonymous said...

As usual, you have revealed the truth about another "issue" the reforming of humanity the left has been fanatically succeeding to do to fit the plan of a New World Order which gives the self-appointed "gods" total control over every single thing.

This reforming into a meaningless, soulless, robotic humanity began with our parents, Adam and Eve, and carried on by the wicked and demon-possessed ever since, winning daily souls for eternal life in the bowels of Hell.

Those who believe mankind can survive without God have proved that is a complete lie throughout history but in every age have succeeded in convincing more people to believe it. The end is coming.

Elaine

Matt said...

Two thoughts.

1. How exactly do gay people getting married lead to "an ongoing rejection of marriage"? Explain that further.

2. In a world where 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce, more people than ever are not getting married, and you can get married for $5 by a guy in an Elvis costume in Vegas, I think it's safe to say that the "sanctity of marriage" has already left the building.

I'm not more of a fan of the Left than anyone else who reads this blog, but it doesn't seem fair to deny two responsible adults in a committed long term relationship the rights and privileges of marriage because you're scared of the Left's "agenda."

Donald Sensing said...

I argue not with anything you say here. But as I pointed out in the Wall Street Journal way back in 2004, gay marriage is not the cause of the destruction of traditional marriage, it is the result of it. ("Save Marriage? It's Too Late"

When Americans decided - and we have decided, this fight was over decades ago - that hetero marriage was not worth protecting in law or social order, the present controversy simply became inevitable.

Sex, childbearing and marriage now have no necessary connection to one another, because the biological connection between sex and childbearing is controllable. The fundamental basis for marriage has thus been technologically obviated. Pair that development with rampant, easy divorce without social stigma, and talk of "saving marriage" is pretty specious. Men and women today who have successful, enduring marriages till death do them part do so in spite of society, not because of it.

Matt's comment is right: "the 'sanctity of marriage' has already left the building.

Anonymous said...

Matt's comment is the only one I've read that is logical and makes sense.

patrick said...

Igor, the way this is done is by only disseminating the true agenda in coded academic language published in journals with names like "socio-textual criticism." You have to have taken a few semesters of graduate level critical theory to learn all the jargon. Then a more palatable but still effective version is distributed at the undergraduate level, in high schools, on TV, etc.

The word "deconstruct" as the author astutely points out is a perfect example of this. It's presented as a type of textual criticism, and of course sometimes that's all it is. But if you get deep enough into critical theory (which itself is the new word for Marxism) you'll find that the process of deconstructing a text is often just one step in the direction of destroying the real institution it represents.

Eric Hyde said...

Daniel, I'm ashamed to say I have never heard of you before this article. This is the most concise, captivating and insightful article I've read not just on the current debate, but on the issue of moral deconstruction and a perfect elaboration of the prophet Isaiah's cry that mankind has turned light into dark, up into down and good into evil.

Thanks for this exceptional piece.

mindRider said...

Neither Matt nor anonymous are right, the destruction of marriage started with porn moving from a few printed books and crude pictures to be bought from under the counter at sleazy stores to all over open on the counter exhibitionism of the sixties - seventies, included free love, swinging etc. this strong lure caused the chiseling away at the pillars of moral standards as preached by the leading western religions. The hippy movement made society open up from social- and selfcontrol to individual freedom and with it came the I centered-ness egotism, hedonism and lack of postponement in fulfilling of desires, shedding of acceptance of authority and most of all shedding of sense of responsibility.

Anonymous said...

Well up to your high standard. One thing intrigues me.There is always a counter revolution. In this case the swing might well be so far in the other direction that even us conservatives might well be discomforted.
In this world nothing is really predictable.
Dave S

Lynda Culler said...

You can be assured that God is completely aware! And He's not worried. He isn't wringing his hands about what to do... When His time is ripe and right EVERY knee will bow and call him Lord... Read the book... Those of us who have already knows how this will end...

Anonymous said...

If your marriage is affected by the union of two men or two women, then surely it wasn't a very strong institution to begin with. Traditional marriage has been re-defined over and over throughout history. This is why in 2013 America a man can't exchange his daughter for 2 goats and a chicken. You may be stuck in the stone age, but the rest of the world is moving on.

fizziks said...

Which group, nationwide, would you say has a lower divorce rate and fewer out-of-wedlock and teenage pregnancies:

1) Educated liberals in major metro areas

2) Culturally conservative people

Every statistic available tells us the answer is #1. So it just doesn't ring true, these claims that liberals are out to destroy marriage as an institution. If anything, they are the only ones keeping it alive on life support right now.

Really, if you think about it, middle class liberals are basically the only people in America keeping the traditional family model alive. We are the ones waiting until marriage to have kids, and staying married to raise those kids. If you want to see a two-biological-parent nuclear family in America these days, you find it among the Kirstin Gillibrands, not among the Bristol Palins.

Until conservatives such as yourself can actually recognize these paradoxes, you will not be able to do anything to restore the family.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

fizziks, that's not politics or religion, it's class.

The upper class has more economic resources to invest in marriage, while those below them often do not.

The upper class can also afford private schools and a better quality of nurture for their children.

Anonymous said...

Marriage is defined as between one man and one woman as ordained by God. The purpose of a man and woman in marriage is to procreate. There is no redefining marriage, it's what the intended purpose of marriage between man and woman is about. There is no logic to saying people divorce so marriage is a scam...it's not about human failures, it's about the intention and principle of marriage.
If lesbians, homosexuals, et al want some legal name for their decision to become a pair, then call them civil unions, or whatever but they will never be a "marriage" in that a man and a woman come together and procreate...lesbians, homosexuals, et al will never meet the test of "marriage".
Marriage is a right ordained by God that can never be applied to two same sex individuals.

Anonymous said...

Thank you ! I've been struggling for months to put this same idea into perspective and clear terminology .

It is frightening how the left have taken a word like "marriage"; that carried thousands of years of hope,promises,reverence,responsibility ,loyalty and some times betrayal and completely gutted the word until it is a hollow shell.

Sadly the left does this to everything ,from holidays to human life. They strip everything of value until society is a wasteland of empty husked zombies that used to be caring human beings.

Joseph Cruz said...

Perhaps the destructive agenda remains constant through changing power bases because this is simply the natural result of moral decline by those not wanting to acknowledge their sin for what it is: "If it makes me happy or it feels good, it can't be bad and I should be allowed to do it." Then, those seeking power capitalize on that thought process by legitimizing it and garnering enough support to succeed in achieving their goal and thereby make the sin legal. Those capitalizing to seek power don't care what the "issue" is or if it is ultimately bad, they only care if they can "ride" it as a means to their ends. Evil begets evil.

fizziks said...

@ Daniel: But who is "the left", who you are so certain is deliberately trying to destroy the institution of marriage, other than those educated liberals in major metro areas? You know, the people who have really low divorce rates and really low out-of-wedlock and teen births?

So my point still stands. How can you accuse the left of trying to destroy marriage when they are some of the only ones still doing it right?

Anonymous said...

I would just like to issue a friendly reminder that these ARE human beings with feelings and emotions and lives, just like the rest of you. If you separate the people from the issue at hand, what is left? I would just like to ask the question if you think Jesus would somehow be proud of you for referring to an entire group as "the gays" and accusing them of destroying marriage? Or would Jesus want you to kneel down and wash their feet and show the radical love that He showed the "dirty sinners" of society?

I don't hope to change anyone's minds, but perhaps to help even one person to stop and think. If you had gay friends, you wouldn't generalize and dismiss an entire group of human beings as proponents of some conspiratorial agenda.

Acolyte4236 said...

Spot on. Nominalism has significant corrosive effects and real world consequences.

expat said...

Daniel,

While it is as recurrent theme in later blog entries, you wrote a piece a while back (4-6 months?) focusing in detail on how the left uses community organizing and "community leaders" to deliver votes, even from groups that might not be natural supporters, and how we are going to have to emulate that in order to turn things around.

If you know which one I mean, please post a link - I want to refresh my friends over at Free Republic on it.

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Re; Or would Jesus want you to kneel down and wash their feet and show the radical love that He showed the "dirty sinners" of society?

Jesus was put in a position to deal with a prostitute...as he considered the prostitute, I believe Jesus would forgive practicing homosexuals and lesbians but as the prostitute, he would admonish "go and sin no more".

Anonymous said...

Matt's response that it isn't fair that two people of the same sex shouldn't be able to marry reveals how successful the controllers really have been. If fairness is the criteria to change a centuries old understanding of the very essence of the institution of marriage, then one has to argue it isn't fair that one can't marry anyone, or anything, they are committed to. Dogs and cats or other types of pets, your own children or other close relative, your best friend are all things people are committed to so you have no argument against state approval of the marriage of any of the above. And you can't claim that this argument will not be the next one on the agenda of the destroyer's because reality proves otherwise.

Elaine

Anonymous said...

"The final deconstruction eliminates nation, religion, family and even gender to reduce the soul of man to a blank slate waiting to be written on."


Chilling words. Chilling because this is the heart and truth of what is happening in our world.

Keliata

Keliata

Anonymous said...

I have a couple of comments.
1. As Dennis Prager asks, why is it that in the entire history of man, are we the first to decide that same sex marriage is what society needs.
2. In the long term, how will children deprived of one or the other gender as a parent think about gender roles. And, while we are making things "fair" for these adults, we are making things unfair for their children who can only come into this world with the help of either a donor or a surrogate. All arguments for or against I have seen never mention the children of these unions. Tragic circumstances may cause a child not to have a mother, who is a woman, but to deprive a child of one seems quite cruel to me.

Edward Cline said...

Daniel is correct that the whole gay marriage issue is an exercise in deconstruction. But it isn't just a deconstruction of the idea of marriage, but of the idea of gender and sexual identity. From gay marriage it can lead to a legal "man-boy" relationship, or a "woman-girl" relationship, and at the very bottom, legalized pedophilia and bestiality. There is no limit when gender identity is destroyed and we are all regarded by the government as just a collection of manqués equipped with undifferentiated, optional genitalia. One of Ayn Rand's villains had a formula for deconstruction: "Elevate mediocrity and the shrines are razed." Today, that could be paraphrased, "Elevate homosexuality to a state of normalcy, and normalcy is razed." As Daniel has pointed out, the assault on marriage is merely one facet of a larger assault, which is on rational epistemology and metaphysics.

Anonymous said...

If homosexual marriage were to be decreed as law of the land by the Court what possible logical argument could be made against polygamy or multiple partner marriage ? None. The very same arguments used by homosexuals to validate their marriages can be argued by a party of 5 individuals 3 women, two men in wanting their "marriage" legitimized. They can argue it's their " human right" and no one should be able to tell them they cannot marry. They can argue that 3 women and two men can better raise children and add more love and support to the children's lives and upbringing, and how dare the rest of society " judge " them. How could any homosexual tell these parties that THEY cannot marry. Where would it end ?
CL

Anonymous said...

Daniel,

I agree with you completly. Any chance you might give us names of specific people and organizations who have been hacking away at traditional social institutions for the last 100, or so, years?

Anonymous said...

Here's whats coming next:

On Saturday afternoon, Yale hosted a “sensitivity training” in which students were asked to consider topics such as bestiality, incest, and accepting money for sex

http://www.campusreform.org/blog/?ID=4646

Anonymous said...

Mag. Nificent! Thank you Daniel.

The Left is driven by hatred, with a black soul that blows out candles and welcomes darkness. We need to not only light more candles than they can blow out (prayer), but stop them blowing out candles somehow - by stabilizing the legal system? Counter-sueing? I don't know, but fight them we must.

Anonymous said...

I don't think there is such a thing as a coherent "left" unified in deconstructive goals. Instead, most ideas comprising the left share one glaring flaw: No limiting principles. So for example the environmental left view mankind as a virus infecting earth and making her sick rather than an integral part of earth, and there's no limiting principle preventing this insane conclusion or any others following from it.

That's not to say there aren't lefties who preach radical deconstructionism. I do know at least one leftist who openly advocates getting rid of family and gender while tasking the state to produce the next generation in test-tubes and nurseries. Before she expressed these views she was a viable political candidate in Sweden. Afterwards not so much. Even in Sweden - the West's secular-leftist Mecca - radical deconstructionism is a hard sell when honestly described.

Rob Smith said...

Fizziks, it's not really useful to compare a small, narrowly defined group with a broad, all encompassing group. If you want useful data, you need to measure groups more alike, like educated, cultural conservatives with educated cultural liberals.

Anonymous said...

2 is using the previous success of the lefts efforts to weaken marriage as justification for further weakening.

Edward Cline said...

As a further observation, first, I don't think the Supreme Court should even be reviewing the propriety of "gay marriage," but it's a federal law they're arguing there, and it has to do with money and benefits. This is actually about contract law, which should be beyond the purview of the court, at least in this context.

Matt said...

"a centuries old understanding of the very essence of the institution of marriage"

Elaine, there was a time not that long ago when people said the exact same thing about interracial marriage. And don't point to the past as the "essence" of marriage, there were times in the past polygamic marriages, child marriages, and forced marriages were all considered normal and acceptable (even in the Bible!). The definition of marriage has changed over time greatly and it's still changing.

"Dogs and cats or other types of pets, your own children or other close relative, your best friend"

Pets and children cannot give consent to sex. There are health issues from procreating with close relatives (although cousins can get married in numerous states, straight cousins of course), and you can marry your best friend today if he or she is the opposite gender! What's the difference?

As for the "procreation" argument for marriage, no one makes straight couples sign an agreement that they will have children once they get married and comes around to make sure they've procreated 5-10 years in. So that's no good either.

Anyone have a reason against gay marriage in and of itself (not as a harbinger of the Left's agenda) besides it's not "natural" and "the Bible says so"??

Anonymous said...

If even gender identification comes down to 'personal choice', then all traditional behavior is optional. We are quickly reaching the point where no standard or principle matters, except what one 'chooses' to think about any given practice in society.

ELC said...

Alas, most of the people whose lives are impoverished, spiritually and physically, by the deconstruction described here would be lost at "deconstruction": it's a big word, and they're not accustomed to seeing such big words; and, it's a complicated idea, and they're not used to dealing with complicated ideas. So, at "deconstruction", they'll surf to some page talking about American Idol or Michelle Obama.

Beth said...

fizziks,

Haven't you ever noticed the Left never lives the way they preach? They live like Conservatives. It is their ideas and policies they inflict on the rest of us that are so pernicious.

The question you should be asking is not why do Liberals/Leftist's remain married in large percentages, but why do support policies they know are so destructive? Put another way, why don't they practice what they preach?

Anonymous said...

This is one of the worst arguments I've ever seen. "Deconstruction of Marriage" is not a reality...just like the "Deconstruction of race supremacy" was horrible, this was not a reality. LGBT citizens deserve to be equal to heterosexual citizens. This is ridiculous that there is even a question here. This article lacks a large amount of critical thinking and needs to be seriously reevaluated. I would go into more technical issues...but there are so many errors in this article that I don't have the time to address each of them in their entirety.

Sincerely,

- Anonymous/ A very strong Republican that is not against gay marriage.

fizziks said...

@ Beth:

On this issue, one must distinguish between liberals and the far left.

I think you need to meet and actually interact with some liberals. I'm not sure what you mean by what they "preach". Your view of liberals seems to be an inaccurate stereotype with little basis in contemporary fact. In this case, regarding gay marriage, what they are preaching is tolerance, secularism in governance, and equality before the law. The last two of those, by the way, were also advocated by conservatives until relatively recently.

Now as for the far left, yes, they do preach very destructive things, both for the family and otherwise. However, they are not the ones generally in favor of gay marriage.

The hypothesis that gay marriage is a nefarious plot to deconstruct the family relies on the hypothesis that the same people pushing gay marriage are the people who want to deconstruct the family, which is simply not true. Perhaps spend some time reading in the left blogosphere to understand the distinction. Actually, that piece of advice goes for most of the commenters here.

Anonymous said...

To approve same-sex marriage opens the door to polygamy, intra-familial (incest), inter-species (bestiality) and intra-generational (pedophilia/ephebophilia) marriage on the same basis - rights, justice, etc. Lobbyists for each of these groups is hard at work propagandizing legislatures and the APA groups on behalf of these 'orientations.'

Meanwhile, the APA has decided to take Gender Identity Disorder out of the new DSM-5 diagnosis manual. From now on it's supposed to be normal to think you are the opposite sex or no gender at all or to change genders mid stream or multiple times. This kind of sexual chaos will be normal thanks to the fathers of mental health: http://www.standfirminfaith.com/?/sf/page/30003

Sexual agenda activists have been at work over decades, inventing and promulgating their paradigm with invented concepts of sexual rights, sexual identity, sexual orientation, gay/straight dichotomy, etc. to wage a propaganda warfare, baby step by baby step according to empirically-proven educational heuristics culminating in this week's Supreme Court hearing on same-sex marriage.

The public consciousness was shaped as each concept was spoon-fed, swallowed, absorbed and believed as truth. Each spoonful was give with a large dose of whining, victimhood and those ever-useful Alinsky-tactics. If you don't agree, approve, you are a 'hater' and are marginalized as a 'bigot', etc.

Science, Scripture and statistics (CDC, crime and coroner) agree and prove that 99% of the harm and injustice done to persons with same-sex attraction is done by those persons, just as muslims and African-Americans hurt themselves and each other more than any other group ever has. Date violence, addictions, sexual injuries, mental health and ST diseases hurt the LBGT population the most.
Same-sex attraction is a symptom, and a great deal of pain, anger and loss/deficit/distortion of love, nurture, identity and attachment is underneath it all.

However the greatest compassion in the face of their demands is to say NO, and to love them even though you disagree.

http://daleoleary.wordpress.com/2013/02/18/true-compassion/

Sibyl S.

Anonymous said...

What comes next after Gender Identity Disorientation is taked off the list of disorders?

Answer: Forcing doctors to perform these surgeries (even though many doctors say it makes matters worse and Johns Hopkins stopped doing these procedures):
http://www.anglican-mainstream.net/2013/03/27/gmc-backs-down-on-requiring-doctors-to-provide-gender-reassignment-as-lobby-group-brings-98-patient-complaints/

Just like they want to force physicians and hospitals to perform abortions.

Sibyl

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Liberalism is in practice increasingly indistinguishable from the far left. The only real difference is the speed at which liberals adopt left-wing ideas.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous: "LGBT citizens deserve to be equal to heterosexual citizens." LBGT is not a race, immutable trait or a separate 'gender' but a conditioned cognitive/affective response. All persons in America have the same rights.
However, all lifestyles and activites are not equal. Some are deadly: http://daleoleary.wordpress.com/2012/11/30/the-syndemic-of-stds-among-gay-men/

It's not loving or even nice to approve or normalize acts and presumed identities based on propaganda and feelings when it is so harmful and is a symptom of underlying issues and problems.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I wrote to my MP with regard to maintaining the definition of marriage. His reply was about homosexuals. I wrote back on his reply that I never mentioned homosexuals but was talking about the institution of marriage between on man and one woman or else where would it end? 3 men, 6 women, a camel and a budgie?? He never did reply to that.

Far left, Far right, liberals.....they all don't know right from wrong. My old grand uncle used to say "when the Bible isn't taught any more, the world will collapse", quite.

kate b

Beth said...

fizziks,

Thank you for the laugh. I live in Connecticut speaking to people on the Left is all I do.

It is you who seem confused by who the Left is, not me. When 60 Democrat Senator's rammed through the "Affordable Care Act" (Orwellian in name) in the dead of night with a procedural move the moderate Democrat ceased to exist.

Second, I am a tomboy and have been my entire life, I have Lesbian friends married longer than my husband and I. They have kids and are dear to me. I am not the ones using them to further my agenda. The Left couldn't care one wit for gays it is the grievance they seek. Just like their purported support for Hispanics, Blacks, Women, Gays, etc. They only seek the people they think they can exploit in order to further their agenda. The question you want to be asking is why do seemingly normal people align themselves with such an evil lot?

Anonymous said...

Matt: Although the most important reason to object to homosexual marriage is God finds the act of sodomy an abomination, and all right-thinking people should heed what God has revealed to man, and there have been man-made and man-accepted forms of marriage other than one man and one woman, the historical and social realities that marriage between one man and one woman have had the best results in creating a social order conducive to more freedom, more prosperity, and the raising of normal and healthy children and the uplifting of the dignity of men, women and children through a stable family unit should be a significant consideration when any attempt is made to change its longstanding norms.

First you argue that it isn't fair that homosexuals can't marry. Now you are saying it must include consensual sex. What other new criteria will you bring up?

Elaine

Opatine said...

Times change.Things change.
People don't like change so much but eventually they have to come to terms with it.
It is part of adapting to the world around you.

Anonymous said...

American Gender-feminists are going to continue to pervert American law enforcement in order to "Empower" themselves; until hetero-sexual relationships become a legal liability for men.

fizziks said...

@ Beth:

Now I am quite confused.

You say you speak to people on the left all the time, and live in Connecticut. I assume that given where you live, many of these people exist in stable two-parent nuclear families in upper-middle class suburbs, have professional jobs, and devote a lot of time to driving their kids to soccer and other activities. So they are obviously not out to destroy the family, rather they are exemplary families.

That leaves the question of who is "the left" who have been accused here of desiring the destruction of the family as an institution. It is clearly not your mainstream northeastern suburban liberal neighbors, given their penchant for stable nuclear families, I hope we can agree on that.

What that leaves as the potential villain here is the far left, and, while they desire the destruction of many important institutions, including probably the family, I encourage you to spend some time on their websites and media to see that they don't really care about gay marriage. It is not an issue for them, for the most part.

The far left isn't pushing gay marriage for the most part. Mainstream liberals are. And clearly, by their very lifestyles which we can witness, mainstream liberals do not desire the destruction of the family, so the whole charge falls apart. Gay marriage is not part of a plot to deconstruct the family.

Anonymous said...

Religious marriage is a construct of Christianity. Not everyone is Christian or Jewish in the world.
Not everyone wants to abide by what they view as made up values.
The gay community will soon realize what the rest of society has learned, that marriage is a form of control on individuals by church and state.

Jay

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

I am having a difficult time with this one. On the one hand, I do not believe that the government should violate the right to contract, nor treat individuals differently (special privileges and special treatment) because of a particular group they are in for whatever reason. At the same time, I agree that deconstruction of vocabulary and institutions by government decree will destroy the civil society that preceded government altogether.
I have thought for a long time that this push to "legalize" gay marriage may be more than that, and is a step toward a violation of the free exercise of their religions by millions of Americans.

I think it is time to take the issues of marriage entirely out of the hands of the state. Prior to the Civil War, people handled marriage in the community: it was a private arrangement, not one controlled by government. There were no tax benefits nor tax liabilities that resulted, although marriage is and was an economic as well as physical union. This is primarily because there was no income tax, nor any of the other perversions of the welfare state. This is the way marriage ought to be envisioned once again: as a voluntary association supported by the community, and enforced by it to a large extent. It would still be a contract, and as such, could be brought to the courts for dispute resolution, but it would not be licensed (created to prevent inter-racial marriage after the Civil War) nor otherwise regulated by the state. In this way, people acting in the community--the civil society--would be able to preserve their institutions without the depredations of government force.

T said...

Daniel's point is simple, but put in a polemical, PoMo, contempo context.
Marriage is about children - procreation and possible progeny. As such, it has a priviledged place in any society because it is a norm about the maintainence of society and culture.

The Left has deconstructed marriage and its central place in life. But not only the Left, I hasten to add. The philosophical history "Moral Darwinism: How We Became Hedonists" (by theologian Benjamin Wiker), speaks to the fundamental and long-term secularization of society.

That change in the West has been brought about not just by modern science, ancient atomism, but classical liberals. Once we reject transcendental Truths, we are adrift in a spectrum of libertinism.

Where is this normative transformation ending? In smaller and smaller "group rights" proclaimed as "oppressed" by the Left. Gay rights now, polyamorous soon, bestiality later. And so on. Marriage won't be marriage anymore. Just relationships of convenience.

Daniel's point may be that there is no end to pleasing those bent on "deconstruction" of a traditional norm like marriage. The Platonist-communist ideal of children raised in special nurseries like Spartans did for war, while the rest of us amuse ourselves to death - if we are to keep from falling to future extinction, perhaps.

Matt said...

Elaine: America is not a theocracy. There is no reason that America's marriage laws should be based on your interpretation of what God says. We follow your logic, Daniel's next article is about the slippery slope America is on towards theocratic dictatorships like Saudi Arabia. So that argument's out.

As for "the historical and social realities," if you say it, it must be true. Gay people already can do everything married couples do, buy houses, raise children, etc., except be married. And civilization hasn't collapsed yet.

I'm not adding any criteria to marriage. I'm just explaining the difference between gay people (two consenting adults) getting married and adults marrying pets and children (who cannot give consent). Similar comparisons that were made, by the way, in opposition to interracial marriage:

"During a vote on a proposed law, a New York legislator pleaded, 'If any single thing should remain untouched by the hand of the reformer, it was the sacred institution of marriage [which] was about to be destroyed in one thoughtless blow that might produce change in all phases of domestic life.'"

Anonymous said...

Same sex marriage has harmful effects, by denying to the children their loss of one of their biological parents. Indeed, the anti Prop. 8 cites the "need" for "marriage" as distinct from domestic partnership, as based on making the kids feel "normal" at school, etc. But biology means something. Look at all the happily adopted kids who still want to meet and know their "birth" parents. Deep inside, these kids know they are missing out. But they can't say anything, because from infancy they are told that two "moms" or two "dads" is the "same" as a mom and a dad. Kids have no power against their parents, so they go along. But when they are 40 or 50 or 20 or sometime, it may dawn on them that they were deliberately deprived of part of their birthright. This may not show up in middle school test scores, or incidence or drug use, etc. And gay people are not any worse (or better) as people than straight people. But enforcing "marriage" so "society" is compelled to join their fiction that there is nothing to biology, nothing to the differences in the genders in par
enting, etc.--well that seems selfish and narcissistic to me.

Anonymous said...

You are right. The left only destroys. It builds no lasting institution. They tried to destroy the military after the Vietnam era, but we resisted and beat them. One of very few, but profound conservative victories.

Naresh Krishnamoorti said...

György Lukács was writing about the implementation of this program nearly a hundred years ago.

matt said...

Equality is deconstruction. So, racism is good, feminism is bad, I get that... then you go on to say the left is deconstructing everything, removing solid definitions(your definitions, not mine by the way). Then that Tyranny is about solid definitions... If I read this correctly, the "Left" is against tyranny, and the "Right" is for tyranny. OK I am with you on this. We can agree on some of what you say then.

Fat Man said...

The promotion of homosexual marriage is a Gramscian attack on the idea of what they call heteronormativity — i.e. that heterosexuality is biologically normal, and socially normative, and that the social policy of encouraging heterosexual marriage is grounded in “nature”.

In analyzing the left, we must remember that the commitment that unifies it is the ideal of the state as the sole institution of society, the sole source of all security, comfort, and joy. In the words of Mussolini: “Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato” (everything in the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the State). One of the institutions that gets in the way of this commitment is private property, which socialism, at least in its full blooded communist form, dispenses with. But, although that condition is necessary, another ancient institution stands in the way of complete undiluted loyalty to the State — the family.

Therefore all leftist programs have included steps to dismantle the family. The advocacy of “free love” and abortion are pillars in that platform. One socialist experiment was the Kibbutz, where all children were supposed to be raised in a common nursery.

But, even those steps are not enough. Heterosexual eroticism will always threaten to reintroduce the family. In order to limit that possibility, leftists must advocate homosexuality.

All of this was understood in ancient times, and explained by Plato in “The Republic”. The model for Plato’s ideal society was Sparta. Their system of military training for boys institutionalized pederasty.

Homosexuality is a political issue because socialism has become a laugh line. Homosexuality and anti-Semitism are all they have left.

jaynie said...

Elishiva Hanna Levin suggests that it "is time to take the issues of marriage entirely out of the hands of the state." So right.

And with civil benefits, remove sexual preferences altogether. There maybe could be a civil provision for people who are in long term relationships and who live together, whether sexually involved or not is nobody's business (a novel idea keeping sexual information to within the couple.). This will put the long term friends who find themselves living together for years and bonded by finances as well as by love and affection on the same footing as the same sex couples.

A_Nonny_Mouse said...

"Deconstruction is a war against definitions, borders and parameters. It is a war against defining things by criminalizing the limitation of definitions."

= = = = =

And THAT is why, some 50 years ago, the word "discrimination" was demonized, and the very concept was ousted from "proper" public discourse.

The ability to discriminate --to see the differences between things, and then to judge which of those things are more worthy or valuable-- had to be stifled in order for the Left's "Long March" to be successful. (And successful they certainly have been. Heaven help us.)

A_Nonny_Mouse said...

Another thought struck me after reading the many excellent comments about The Meaning of Marriage, and why the state should / should not be involved: in a word, inheritance.

"Marriage" has so many social implications (family, kinship, child-rearing) that it's easy to forget that it also involves such practical matters as who takes legal title to physical property when its original owner dies. So that's one way in which "government &/or formal legal processes" are involved with traditional marriage.

Anonymous said...

some fool called a Strong Republican who's not against gay marriage saying that this article is horrible and needs critical thinking and he has no time to address the issue. strong republicans don't side for this madness and if you are not going to make your point or try to be the gay marriage apologist on this side you have to enlighten us with your common sense not just use the strong republican costume to find acceptance to your bright comment

Bruce Majors said...

Now that I've read the fevered posts to this piece I'm wondering if any of your readers would be in favor of legally prohibiting marriage between Jews and Christians since it "deconstructs" religion to allow people not committed to raising their children in the true faith to procreate. It is but a short step from interfaith marriage to orgies with hamsters. Because the essential aspect of marriage is procreating a new generation to worship God as he commanded, not that two adults feel such a passionate commitment that they wish to be together forever.

Charles Martin Cosgriff said...

This is a wonderful essay. Well said!

Anonymous said...

@Opatine,
But one thing is absolute about change, and that is God's laws NEVER change.

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

Interesting, that some here think that state sanction of marriage and the handing out of marriage licenses must exist in order to provide for inheritance, etc.

Actually, in an all-powerful state, there is no private property to pass along, and marriage means very little regardless of who is party to it.

I also wonder what my great-grandmother would think. She was married in the Pale of Settlement in Tsarist Russia, and her contract was a Ketubah, recognized by her religious community but NOT by the state. It didn't really matter to her, though, because her rights were protected by the Rabbinic Courts in her area, set up by the Jews of the Pale for the Jews of the Pale. The civil society existed before the state and will likely exist after we get over bowing to the idol of the all-powerful state.

State or no state, people always have to figure out what to do about marriage and dissolution of marriage, paternity, inheritance, and the protection of children. We don't need the state to do that, and oftentimes, as the tyranny of the majority solidifies, the state actually mucks such things up.

What is interesting is that when she passed Lady Liberty in New York Harbor, that little (4'10") Jewish woman's Ketubah was recognized as a contract by the US Courts. In a free society, one does not need permission from the state to make a contract, and the government exists only to protect the rights of individuals who choose or do not choose to make contracts. Thus the courts enforce all kinds of contracts--even verbal ones--if one can prove that they were made.

By taking marriage out of the hands of the state, we may find new freedom to preserve it as an institution of the civil society, governed by the community in which it takes place, and which it also preserves.

As for gays, I have nothing against them, it is a free country--or at least when I was born here it was!--and I have my own life to live and my own problems to solve. As do they! If the institution of marriage was not governed by the state, surrounded by all the tax privileges that such a confiscation of wealth can create, I doubt this issue would be so important to so many.

At least, for the sake of Federalism, we should not allow SCOTUS or any federal court to have any say about an amendment to the California State Constitution. At least if this issue is worked out in the states, those who do not like a vote or decision can vote with their feet.

@woodyog said...

Who stands to gain and who to lose when all valuing is neutered? Those who know that they cannot withstand honest judgment. In other words they embrace tyranny over liberty. Such is the political agenda of the Left. Destroy judgment and all is allowed. Post Modernism, that proudly announced in the eighties that Loony Tunes were the aesthetic equivalent of the works of Michelangelo, wished to elevate the mediocre and devalue greatness. They aimed to turn Western Civilization over to Philistines. The old cultural elite who monopolized artistic judgment in the academies, have now performed a volte face and have recaptured the "high ground" by devaluing value and denigrating judgment. This devaluation of value is the essential and deadly assault of Post Modern Deconstruction, its final assault on the citadels of Western Civilization. Perhaps you remember the cry in the sixties radicals at Berkley that went: "Hey Hey, Ho Ho, Western Civ has got to go!"

James said...

I think the distinction Greenfield is missing is simply that some things are not black and white. To understand that there is a sliding scale, not simply "on" or "off". We learned this about race. There is not "black" and "white". Though some people are clearly blacker or whiter (or Asian or ...) we are all a little mixed. This isn't a "deconstruction" of race. It's a richer understanding of human genetics. Gender, likewise, is a continuum. Sure, MOST people are solidly to male or female ends. But there are many, many hermaphrodites and intersexed people born all the time. People with one of each gonad, or neither. Or people with XXY chromosomes or "men" with XY but who have a condition which prevents processing Testosterone, so the develop as females (androgen insensitivity syndrome). Where do these people fit in "traditional marriage"?

It's not about giving "opposite meanings" to words as Greenfield claims. Saying "the world is not black and white" is different than saying "black is white". It's the former, not the latter.

Wow, lot of straw men being throw around here: liberals think this, liberals say that, this is part of the liberal agenda... This is all made up stuff. Here's a decent little test: If you are telling your debate opponent WHAT THEY THINK, you are making up a straw man. And... quoting Mussolini to represent current American left-of-center though?? Yeah. That's a serious contribution. CLUE: half of Americans are left of center.

Ok, thanks.

Anonymous said...

It is not "your marriage" as if we are speaking about someone's individual marriage. Interesting you used the word traditional also. Making the argument that "redefining something does not change it" is kind of silly. Is it possible that something can change for the better? Is it not then possible that something can change for the worse? Is it possible that something can change to the point it is no longer wanted or needed? That is the point Daniel is making. The rest of the world is moving on, but some people are just kind of looking ahead with eyes wide open and wondering where we are going. What are we really doing here? What is real vs redefined?

Renee said...

There is so much research on the vital importance of a mother and father, even in Massachusetts. We just can not unite the two in our public policy, because the law says so. Sound legit.

The nature if the individual has both paternal and maternal connections to both biological parents. The social connection of both parents have positive outcomes for all.
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130304161623.htm

""Mothers with support from fathers may be more likely to practice healthy behaviors, which has been shown to contribute both to healthier babies, better birth outcomes, and lower postpartum disturbance," Dunkel Schetter added.
The study's results suggest that the timing of support interventions is especially important.
"Because levels of pCRH in the last trimester contributed to postpartum depression, early social support interventions might protect against both elevated pCRH and depressive symptoms," Dunkel Schetter said."

Anonymous said...

What utter horseshit.

Anonymous said...

You have a point about religion and marriage. However the Constitution of America gives equal rights to all, not just to Christians who believe in the institution of marriage.

Anonymous said...

I really think you are reading way too much into it. The world will always change and peoples beliefs too. It was only a matter of time when the world would reach this phase. But the important thing is to focus on your own damn life and not get so caught up in what other people are doing. If you don't like it then focus on bettering your own marriage and ideals, and stop pointing fingers at everyone else. Also deconstruction was used in this article like a hundred times, which is really kind of annoying. Plus marriage is a made up thing, you can't deconstruct something that didn't really exist in the first place. When did we give marriage so much power? Its just like when people get offended when people curse, why does it matter? The words aren't in the dictionary, they aren't even real words. Just words other people made up and other people gave deeper meaning to. In the end they are just made up words that don't really matter. In the end who gives a shit. Just focus on what YOU are doing.

Elizabeth said...

Really good article. Not to nitpick but recently I noticed how I had inadvertently adopted the language of the culture while speaking of this or other controversial social issues. It's insidious and sneaks up on you without noticing, and I do believe that it's important. Once it was brought to my attention by some article or other, I made the concerted effort to use the words that are proper to it, not the words that happen to be politically correct.

It was striking to me while reading this article the use of the word "gay" as opposed to "homosexual". Also the use of the word "marriage" in relation to homosexuals. Marriage between homosexuals doesn't exist. There is no such thing. "Gay" attempts to put a positive spin on immoral behavior.

Words and their definitions are imporant.

Bruce Majors said...

Social conservatives really are, at root, as O’Reilly observed this week, theocrats. They could not give an argument for excluding same sex couples from marriage that did not appeal to God. All the other arguments fail, since some gay people procreate and raise kids, and some heterosexuals do not.

As a result all attempts to legislate heterosexuals-only marriage amounted to denying not only freedom of association, but to denying freedom of religion and establishing a state church (as conservative lesbian blogger Cynthia Yockey first observed) in that all marriage would be by legal definition only those between men and women, as the approved churches ordained. (And same sex marriages performed by gay or gay friendly synagogues or churches would not receive a stamp of state approval as they would in the state recognized and established churches.)

Gay marriage has existed for decades if not centuries. Gay people in passionate and committed relationships have always considered themselves to be married, and so have some of their friends and relatives. In some cases women or men cross dressed and assumed the other gender to make their marriages legal. That state established churches and government courts defined their marriages not to be marriages is irrelevant. Why not just argue that that having churches be separate from the government is unprecedented in human history (prior to 1776) and so must not be allowed, since it is legislating from the bench, judicial activism, and radical social engineering?

A heterosexual libertarian friend who builds websites for major tea party groups asked me this month what I, as a (single) gay tea party/libertarian activist made of all this. I said I think many issues are more important, like debt, taxes, war, and currency debasement, and I don’t think all opponents of gay marriage are evil, as opposed to just wrong. But it is hard for me to respect you. Sadly, the attempt to discuss the issue as a tactical issue about compromising is also lame. I don’t think you’ve identified what principle is being compromised. Both the right to marry someone you love who happens to have the same genitals, and the right to defend yourself, flow from the same principle, that of the individual’s right to own her or his own life and body. It doesn’t matter that you always used the word marriage to refer to heterosexual couplings, or that men and women are different, or that ideally children should have at least two parents, at least one of each gender, or that gay coupledom is “inferior” in that it does not, currently, allow for someone to produce offspring who are the genetic union of two people in love. Gays, and sometimes their friends and relatives, have long used the word marriage to refer to their more committed and passionate unions, no matter how you get the State to define words. As with the economy, you just need to get the hell out of the way.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

To say that gay marriage has existed for decades is to say that it's a manufactured phenomenon with no natural history among the human race

Marriage has always meant natural marriage. Replacing it with something else and insisting that having a thing mean what it always meant is exclusionary makes a hash of meaning.

But if we're going to end the notion of natural marriage, then why exclude every other conceivable relationship between any number of people from also being classified as marriage?

I'm still waiting for an answer from gay marriage supporters

JakeL said...

I'm glad someone finally has the courage to say they know it all when it comes to gay marriage. For instance:

"Gay marriage is not about men marrying men or women marrying women..."

What is straight marriage? Is it men marrying women, or women marrying men?

"The question on the table is whether the institutions that give us meaning will be allowed to retain that meaning."

Is this like cake and eat it too? The institution can't both give you meaning and retain that meaning. It has to either give you meaning or retain it. It can't do both!

An institution gives you meaning? If you were to sit on a grassy hill on the edge of a lake surrounded by trees would you have meaning? If you could look across and see a formation of birds in the air, their twins mirrored on the water, would you have meaning? If you were to see a smaller fish stirring the waters in a tight swirl as a larger fish chases it just beneath the surface, what institutions pop into your mind?

"it's what the left's agenda has always been. It's understood at the top, but most of those at the bottom likely think it's a fight for civil rights"

Are you at the top of left policy making? Or do they just throw you a bone from time to time to write about?

I like my guns, personally I'd like to keep them under the civil rights we call The Bill of Rights.

It's unfortunate they left out the amendments about marriage. I'll pull a liberal move and just blame it on the founders for leaving the people to decide their fates on the rest in aggregate.

As for the concept of marriage. I love my wife. The only people who give meaning to our marriage is us. No pride, no ego. We're in it for the family that we have created.

Kyle saunders said...

There is a book written by a Mormon apostle, elder James e talmage, entitled, the great apostasy, which describes the true source of conspiring men and their relentless attempts to force evil on mankind down through the ages. Every left sided effort is one and the same with these evil intents. the book also describes the only way to prevent the left wing movements and to usurp that influence. I refute anyone in this world to deny that what I say is absolute truth. And if such an one would, I would like that individual to present a valid argument that can refute me, for I say, none exists.

-Kyle

Kyle saunders said...

Read, the great apostasy by James E Talmage it explains the left wing view, the right wing view, and then it explains the correct view. Sounds like everyone is arguing their emotions more than their perspective...why not let truth and wisdom govern your understanding. James e talmage lived a life of study and research of political, religious, historical, philosophic, and conceptual understanding. He traveled the world and studied every culture in his time, and was an inspiring man in every sense of the word. I give you my feelings and reason, too many people live on emotions and opinion of others and never give themselves the chance to learn a thing entirely. Try understanding and wisdom a little more and exacerbated emotions a little less.

Anonymous said...

there are many arguments but the counsel of G-d rules over all...who is on the Lord's side on this issue? we can rehash it and rehash it but this is the true essence of this debate...chose...

James said...

"But if we're going to end the notion of natural marriage, then why exclude every other conceivable relationship between any number of people from also being classified as marriage?

I'm still waiting for an answer from gay marriage supporters"

Why do gay marriage opponents say that they never get an answer from gay marriage supporters about other possible arrangements being called marriage? Do they ever even ask outside of their own echo chambers? Or are their questions (as I see again and again in the comments) along the lines of "well if we can have gay marriage why can't I marry my dog or my 2 year old daughter?" and then they wonder why nobody takes them seriously enough to even reply?

Well my answer would be that I have no moral objection to a union of consenting adults being recognized as a polygamous marriage, heck they even had it in the Bible. Nor do I have the same fetish for definitions and linguistics that the author of this article seems to have such that it would be a traumatic experience for me to see "marriage" being redefined to include such unions. But, practically/legally speaking it seems to open many more cans of worms than marriage between two men or two women does. If one member of the union takes out an insurance plan with spousal coverage, is the insurance company obligated to provide coverage at the same rates to all other members of the union? If one member wants out of the union how is it decided what assets that member can keep, and how is custody of children decided? If one member is ill or injured and no longer competent to make decisions for himself, but other members disagree as to the right decision, how is that finally decided?

If polygamy activists would answer practical questions like this I would have no issue with legally recognized marriages including this type of arrangement, but even in the states or countries that have had gay marriages for nearly 10 years has there even been a serious effort to have polygamous marriages recognized, let alone all the other bizarre "slippery slope" scenarious gay marriage opponents warn us about? Could it actually be that gay marriage is an equality and justice issue and the others are all just bizarre fabrications of the anti-SSM crowd?

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Polygamy is a bizarre fabrication?

Marriage equality should cover everyone in a marriage. And power of attorney already exists. So your objections to total marriage equality fail.

Bruce Majors said...

Polygamy can be analyzed, but to do analysis one has to actually think, which means you have to put aside religious chants and emotional outbursts about how icky you think other people's sex lives are.

Marriage is a contract, and contracts are between two entities. That's why one can't marry a toaster, a hamster, or a child. Only an entity that can consent to being a party to a contract in the eyes of the law can marry.

You can't marry two other people. You can only contract with them together if they incorporate as a separate legal entity. So for a poly-amorous union to exist as a legal contract, the 2nd wife or husband is contracting with a corporate entity formed by husband and wife number one.

Anonymous said...

I notice a variation on this "how does two men or two women marrying harm YOUR marriage?" question cropping up over and over in these discussions. The implication being that we should have no concern over the nature of society and culture - that our concern should be confined solely to our immediate circumstances and close circle of family and friends - and that to express such concerns about the society and culture in which we live is somehow to be narrow minded and bigoted. In other words the assertion is that we must all mind our own business and let people do as they please as long as "no one is hurt" by their actions.

Human beings are more than just carbon-oxygen engines of pure self interest. They are more than simple economic cogs whose sole purpose is to grease the wheels of commerce and industry and pay taxes. They are more than stand alone bundles of sensation driven to seek maximum pleasure and minimal pain.

Human beings are moral beings.

If one believes there is purpose to life; that life has meaning and a goal and that our beliefs and our moral life is at the root of how well we live and the degree to which we prosper as individuals and as a people then these things become a vital concern. I am a Christian. I am serious about it. I will strive to live my life in accordance with Judeo/Christian principles. I will fail often to do this but I will repent and keep on trying. I know that these same principles form the underpinning of this civilization and I know that this civilization is, on balance, the most materially successful in human history. It is also the most morally successful civilization in history. It is this civilization that has abolished the institution of chattel slavery (an institution that is thousands of years old); has elevated women to levels of equality before the law and societal status that was unheard of in past cultures; that has attempted in the face of all history and tradition to place all of us on an equal footing in regards the law, access to learning and opportunity to work, worship and exercise liberty.

People are the culture and civilization. People's beliefs and morals make culture and civilization. Mr. Greenfield has eloquently and cogently stated the goals and methods of those who wish to transform our civilization. This is the civilization in which I live and in which my children and their children will live. It is the civilization for which my father and grandfathers fought and worked and sacrificed to build.

I will oppose any and all efforts to further degrade and destroy such fundemental institutions as marriage and family. Such efforts undermine and degrade my people, my culture, my civilization. Such efforts are aimed at destroying faith and morals. The homosexual agenda will be, is already being, used to attack people of faith (especially Christians and Jews). The result of these attacks is greater poverty, a weakening of the moral integrity needed to defend the civilization, moral degradation and ultimately the collapse of the West.

This whole matter is but another battle in the long war against God. the adversary knows God cannot be touched so he comes after His creation. That would be us. Our basic task is to choose a side. I know which side I choose.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. Daniel, you have uncommon sense, and that's what I like about you.

kate b

Anonymous said...

Matt trots out the same old responses that mean nothing (Elaine is right):

Elaine, there was a time not that long ago when people said the exact same thing about interracial marriage. And don't point to the past as the "essence" of marriage, there were times in the past polygamic marriages, child marriages, and forced marriages were all considered normal and acceptable (even in the Bible!). The definition of marriage has changed over time greatly and it's still changing. \

Matt - GOD's definition of marriage has actually never changed. Just because people engage in certain relationships and/or "marriages" doesn't mean they are following God's definition of marriage. Man might think he can change the definition but I'll stick with God's, thanks.

"Dogs and cats or other types of pets, your own children or other close relative, your best friend"

Pets and children cannot give consent to sex. There are health issues from procreating with close relatives (although cousins can get married in numerous states, straight cousins of course), and you can marry your best friend today if he or she is the opposite gender! What's the difference?

Matt - Who cares whether or not animals or children can consent to sex? If someone feels like they are attracted to their pet or to children who are you to say anything who can & can't give consent? Are you being intolerant of someone who can't help how they feel and who (or what) they are attracted to? See how that works?

As for the "procreation" argument for marriage, no one makes straight couples sign an agreement that they will have children once they get married and comes around to make sure they've procreated 5-10 years in. So that's no good either.

Matt-The procreation argument does, in fact, work. 2 men together or 2 women together will NEVER be able to produce a child by themselves. Whether or not people have children or not makes no difference. The question is whether they COULD produce offspring in a natural fashion.

Anyone have a reason against gay marriage in and of itself (not as a harbinger of the Left's agenda) besides it's not "natural" and "the Bible says so"??

Matt-Why are there 2 sexes? Why isn't everyone the same or hermaphroditic? That's another argument.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Greenfield, you are a good man.

Anonymous said...

So in summary...

* Gays don't really want to get married, they're just trying to destroy the family unit

* The institution is not special anymore when we have to share it

* Marriage is a failing institution: but it's not the fault of the people choosing not to do it, quitting it, or doing it badly. It's not our fault! It's the fault of lefty-communist-pinko-queers who are using postmodern language techniques to ruin our marriages from the outside!

* It's just seeing men kissing now... but it leads down a slippery slope to sodom and gomorrah

* Equality is merely a pretext for destruction... this damn equality is a bad thing

* Those lefties asking for rights are just undermining our way of life by making our special privileges ordinary. You think they're just asking to be treated like people - but it's WAR, I tell you!!!!

* You say tomato and I say tomato. You say healthcare, I say communism. Except that I'm right and those lefties are just using language to attack our way of life

* If we let men marry each other, nothing means anything anymore

What a lot of intellectually dishonest horseshit

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

"Marriage is a failing institution: but it's not the fault of the people choosing not to do it, quitting it, or doing it badly. It's not our fault! It's the fault of lefty-communist-pinko-queers who are using postmodern language techniques to ruin our marriages from the outside!"

Actually it's the fault of the left for its war on the family.

And no, legalizing your wacky setups is not equality, it's special treatment. Why should two men get a privilege that three men or four women and a man don't?

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