Sunday, September 18, 2011

Edward Leigh on ‘gay marriage’: “A recognizably Conservative Government would not do this”

Lest it should suddenly and inexplicably disappear, His Grace reproduces below an article on the Cornerstone Blog by Edward Leigh MP. It will be interesting to see how Non-Conformist, Anglican and Roman Catholic MPs vote on this (not to mention adherents of Judaism and Islam); and even more interesting to observe into which lobby Cabinet Minister Iain Duncan Smith decides to walk (unless, of course, he is 'unavoidably' absent from the vote). It will also be interesting to discover if Cranmer's Law applies equally to a respected Roman Catholic MP as it clearly did to Roger Helmer MEP and (naturally) to His Grace on this matter.
Statement by Edward Leigh on Same-sex Marriage & Civil Partnerships

I am astonished and disappointed that a Conservative Government, albeit a coalition one, has announced it is consulting on whether to do away with traditional marriage which has always been between a man and a woman.

The British are a tolerant people and it is right that homosexual people should be allowed to get on with their lives. But this does not extend to mangling the language of marriage so that, for the sake of the tiny number of gay people who prefer marriage to civil partnership, everyone else in society must have the definition of their own marriage altered forever.

Once we have departed from the universally understood framework of marriage, there is no logical reason why the new alternative institution should be limited to two people. Why not three? Or thirty-three?

Same-sex couples already have all the rights of marriage in the form of civil partnership. Why must they also have the language of marriage? No doubt because it is an important symbol to them. But it is also an important symbol to many other people. Must the religious and cultural heritage of the whole nation be overturned to suit the demands of a minority even of the gay community itself?

We should also be concerned about liberty. This is all part of a process whereby debate and honest language is manipulated and suppressed by a kind of Newspeak. In recent years people who say things gay rights groups do not like have often found themselves being reported to the police. If the government presses ahead and replaces marriage with a unisex institution, what is the future for those who say they do not believe a man can have a husband or a woman a wife?

This would not be the action of a government whose primary function is to protect our traditional freedoms and values. A recognizably Conservative Government would not do this.

On the separate issue of legalising the registration of civil partnerships in churches, this is being promoted as defending religious freedom. In fact, this is an attack on the bedrock of society: marriage and religion.

When Civil Partnerships were brought in we were assured that they were not marriage. This pledge has now been broken. A marriage is a union between a man and a woman making a sincere attempt to stay together for life with a view to raising children. Civil Partnerships, by definition, cannot be this. The whole point of banning Civil Partnerships in a place of worship was to make clear that they were not marriages. This distinction will now be lost.

Why is this an attack upon religion? Because sooner rather than later a Minister of Religion will be sued for refusing to conduct a gay marriage in Church. Even if our own courts stand firm, we can place little faith in the European Court of Human Rights. It will be argued, with some justification, that it is irrational and confusing for some churches to permit this and others not.

The Government seems to have lost the point of the Pope’s visit in September. He was arguing, and I agree, that religious people do not seek to impose their views on others. But they must be allowed their own space.

The Government has to recognize that this is a steam train on a collision course with the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church. Same sex couples already have all the legal advantages of marriage and can have a blessing in those churches which want to do them without any change in the law.

191 Comments:

Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your Grace

That Leigh fellow is a good chap. Must have tuned into your site last night...

18 September 2011 at 14:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Everyone will wonder what all the fuss was about after a couple of years, I'm sure. It was probably like this when women got the vote: slippery slopes to oblivion, skies falling in, society turned upside down, etc.

18 September 2011 at 14:48  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

DanJ0

Everyone will wonder what all the fuss was about after a couple of years

Women's sufferage is trivial beyond description when compared to the definition of marriage. The later is the essential foundation of civilization. To change its definition is to change how it performs the task it was intended to do. Some people do not understand the central role of marriage in civilization and so despise it from ignorance. Others do understand the central role of marriage and despise it from malice. Either way, you cannot traverse from a natural fixed definition to an 'at will' definition and not fundamentally change the culture which rests upon that institution.

Understand that I really don't care what you call it. 'Marriage' or 'civil partnership' makes no difference to me. What matters is the proper ordering of expectations about sex and children and family. Get it wrong, and you will blow your civilization to Mars. The vital task of marriage is to create stable families that will conceive and civilize the next generation. 'At will' relationships defined according to whatever criteria the parties desire will not be able to perform that task.

carl

18 September 2011 at 15:28  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

/

18 September 2011 at 15:33  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl: "The vital task of marriage is to create stable families that will conceive and civilize the next generation."

I think you must be misunderstanding what is being proposed. It's not swapping straight marriage for gay marriage, it's adding gay marriage to straight marriage to make a bigger set. If one is straight and wants to marry one's partner then hurrah! One can have children if one is able and hopefully create a stable family environment which socialises the next generation. Here's a helpful chart which should explain the impact of it all.

18 September 2011 at 15:38  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Yes, in recent decades we have moved strongly into the realm of situational ethics. However, if morality means anything it has to be something more than opinion. Philosophy attempts to discover universal laws. It asks fundamental questions with the intention of discovering the criteria by which an action can be judged to be ethical but over centuries and millennia, human beings have found it very difficult to agree on what is right and what is wrong. Politicians who tell church leaders to stay out of political debate seem to imply that ethical laws are not universal but rather the will of the governing elite at a particular time and can be changed by means of a parliamentary count. I suspect that most people consider morality to be more important than political expediency and to have a value which lasts longer than a political mandate but unfortunately, there is, in modern western societies, a problem not merely in trying to find agreement about universal moral laws but even agreeing that such a thing exists. Many people think that what may be right for one person is not necessarily right for another and some may argue that whereas an action may be wrong in some circumstances it might be acceptable in another.
Which idea is correct? The law of gravity is the same in all areas of the world but we know that moral laws differ. Is this the way it should be, or should ethical laws be the same in all countries? In other words are there self-evident truths?

18 September 2011 at 15:41  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0

The Inspector recalls many times being asked to be tolerant towards homosexuals. Fair enough.

Tolerance has it’s limits !!

How about homosexuals being ‘tolerant’ to the 95%+ of people who want nothing to do with homosexuality or their queer ideas undermining our society ??

Do think about....

18 September 2011 at 15:57  
Blogger Albert said...

A brave man!

Once we have departed from the universally understood framework of marriage, there is no logical reason why the new alternative institution should be limited to two people. Why not three? Or thirty-three?

And if it comes to that why two spinsters not be allowed to get married and enjoy its benefits?

Here's the problem (apart from the inherent injustice of it): either gays have to find some ground to explain why they, as couples, should have married rights (rights which they deny to people in other relationships), or sooner or later there will be claims that just about any kind of relationship can be a marriage. But if every kind of relationship can be a marriage, then the special union of man and woman, for the begetting and bringing up of children, will be lost.

So what is the reason that a gay relationship should be raised to the status of a marriage, but other relationships shouldn't?

18 September 2011 at 16:01  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector: "How about homosexuals being ‘tolerant’ to the 95%+ of people who want nothing to do with homosexuality or their queer ideas undermining our society ??"

We are for the most part I expect. I'm relatively tolerant of straight couples kissing in the street and on the TV. Wedding rings are fine. I don't mind hearing about what straight spouses have done over the weekend when I'm at work, I don't expect men to substitute 'they' for 'she' so that the nature of their relationship remains hidden. I don't mind if you're not married in your late 30s and I don't assume stuff if you don't have children. I don't mind the tax advantages. I don't mind paying for your children's education or for the various child benefits you get if you're parents.

It's all fine really. No, really. You just get on with it. But we expect like to be treated alike in the formal settings whether or not you turn your nose up at it all. Hard luck with that if you're up for the equivalent of racists with (say) black or Asian people. I'm less tolerant of the religious undermining our society too and filling the minds of children up with their corruption. But keep your churches, mosques, and temples. Stick up those crappy dayglo posters outside proclaiming "Jesus saves!" if you like. I won't even add in black marker pen "But Mohammed scores on the rebound!" underneath them for a cheap laugh. No, no, don't thank me. It's fine.

18 September 2011 at 16:26  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

What a clear statement from Edward Leigh. Welldone.

Time now for the Conservatives and LibDems to dissolve their civil partnership.

18 September 2011 at 16:38  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

Commonsense from Mr Leigh which will chime with the majority view (assuming the electorate would ever be consulted that is)

Out of pure curiosity I am wondering what either party in a male or female homosexual 'marriage' would be the correct term. If the traditional understanding of marriage confers that man would be the husband and the woman be the wife - what next? We already have had words in the English language undermined so that Gay meaning happy, carefree and uninhibited is no longer what it used to mean.

Faggots in gravy sounds absolutely sordid instead of appetising.

And as for sneaking out for Fag - well just don't go there!

18 September 2011 at 16:47  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0

That’s all remarkably tolerant of you !!!

The Inspector is a tolerant man. As a Roman Catholic, He doesn’t campaign for the disestablishment of the Anglican Church, neither is he concerned with the Act of Settlement 1701.

What he’s not so tolerant about are special interest groups who want to change everything, and here’s a surprise, just for their benefit, (...as they always take it too far...).

(Incidentally, amongst the next generation of children the heterosexuals produce are of course the next generation of homosexuals. Puts a different face on it now, doesn’t it.)

18 September 2011 at 16:50  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

like to be treated alike

That's the very point under discussion. If gay couples are to be treated equally, they must be in some sense equal with heterosexual married couples - equally what? If you want to believe that, that's fine, but with this legislation you impose that belief. What's your justification?

On the other hand, why should we accept that gay couples are superior (in the sense of being able to enter into matrimony) to other kinds of relationships?

18 September 2011 at 16:52  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Yes Mohammed scores on the rebound, when Christians are discourteous or vindictive or just like other people. God knows He has to work with our flawed humanity and He does. Mohammed scores with some people because Islam is very definite and Christianity appears to be very indefinite when we see the different denominations squabbling. However Islam is very definite about some nasty things like punishing the woman who was raped because the rape was evidence of sexual activity outside marriage. Secondly, the sins of Christians are front page news (I’ve no problem with that) but we are not told very much about the virtual genocide against Christians in Islamic countries or about the squabbling between the different Islamic factions but then there are plenty of bombings of Mosques by opposing factions so I really don’t understand why people cannot see the confidence of Islam as a charade. In Christianity we have our problems but we are attempting to resolve them peaceably even if our conversation in blogs such as this can sometimes get a little heated.

18 September 2011 at 16:53  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dreadnaught

We already have words to describe the ‘happy couple’...

Pederast and Catamite for males
Dyke and Princess for females

18 September 2011 at 16:57  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector: "What he’s not so tolerant about are special interest groups who want to change everything, and here’s a surprise, just for their benefit, (...as they always take it too far...)."

Are you talking about the Tory Party there? Why is Cameron doing this? Is it perhaps to offset the reoccurring perception of the Nasty Party during this time of economic turbulence?

As for special interest groups in general, we live in a politically liberal society so that ought to be normal bread and butter stuff. Your special interest group will be competing with the Muslim ones soon for religious privileges. Good luck with that.

"(Incidentally, amongst the next generation of children the heterosexuals produce are of course the next generation of homosexuals. Puts a different face on it now, doesn’t it.)"

No, not at all. God help children of strictly religious parents who turn out to be gay. Poor things. Also, your 95%+ figure is ludicrous. I know lots of straight people and couples who just live and let live regarding homosexuality. It's off radar for them. I'm the same with heterosexuality. It's just sexual orientation as far as I'm concerned as I say again and again.

18 September 2011 at 17:01  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

DanJ0

Your chart (which is admittedly humorous) begs the question. "What is marriage?" It was an objective standard that is imposed upon people. It is now a relationship that exists at the will of those who enter it. Will it for example be monogamous? Why could it not be 'open' at the will of those who enter into the relationship? Homosexual relationships are not known for rigorous monogamy. So why should the definition of marriage not be modified to accommodate such desires?

I don't much care that homosexuals will get "married" - although in fact they won't avail themselves of the institution. I care about the distortions that will be imposed on the institution to accommodate the individual preferences of those who would enter it. You cannot hermetically seal off the effects of those distortions from the population at large.

carl

18 September 2011 at 17:05  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0

I know lots of straight people and couples who just live and let live regarding homosexuality

Here’s a jolly thing, ask around your gay friends and find out who many times normal couples have asked them to babysit their children...

Don’t be too surprised if the answer is an overwhelming Never.

18 September 2011 at 17:15  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

"That's the very point under discussion. If gay couples are to be treated equally, they must be in some sense equal with heterosexual married couples - equally what?"

A marriage is a social institution. It serves a social purpose. The way we're currently organised is around small households which provide the first stage socialisation of new society members, they provide legal, financial and emotional stability for the adults and for any children involved. Clearly children do not have to be involved in an existing straight marriage. Clearly children still thrive even if there is only one parent or care-giver, though it is not ideal. Clearly some children do worse even though there are two straight parents or care-givers. There are also potential inheritance issues involved for property which marriages help solve such that stable family homes are not lost etc. As a species we're inclined to pair-bond and marriage recognises and strengthens that natural inclination when it happens. Marriages usually involve love although that clearly isn't a universal requirement here or in other places around the world. A family also provides the means to share jobs and roles thus freeing up time for other activities. That's my first thoughts on the matter. There are no doubt other things too if I think about it. Isn't that the essence of marriage and/or family homes? Does any of that not apply to gay people wanting to set up a family or home?

18 September 2011 at 17:15  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector: "Here’s a jolly thing, ask around your gay friends and find out who many times normal couples have asked them to babysit their children... Don’t be too surprised if the answer is an overwhelming Never."

I already know the answer to that one. You're wrong in your assumption although I have to say that most people I know don't tend to ask friends of any sexual orientation to babysit. Perhaps I'm lucky in that I'm in a set of educated, liberal, middle-class people on the whole, I don't tend to hang around with bigots with polluted minds.

18 September 2011 at 17:21  
Blogger Albert said...

I don't expect this is going to be a popular comment, but yesterday I said to Dan that one of his comments unacceptable. He replied by pointing out a number of other comments that were similarly unacceptable.

It is surely not helpful that this important issue has twice now, descended into unpleasantness. While homosexual acts are form a Christian perspective wrong, so are expressions of hatred or abuse to homosexual persons in general or particular. It's wrong, it's not necessary and it doesn't convince anyone of anything, unless to convince a homosexual that Christians oppose gay marriage, because, at heart, they are homophobic.

18 September 2011 at 17:21  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

So let me concede, for the sake of argument that marriage is not, of itself, ordered to the begetting and bringing up of children. Why does what you've just written allow for gay marriage, but not the marriage (and benefits - you've mentioned inheritance, for instance) of a couple of spinsters?

As a species we're inclined to pair-bond

Perhaps the majority are, but if the majority rules then you've just undermined the argument for gay marriage, haven't you? So why not marriages or groups of people?

18 September 2011 at 17:26  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl: "It is now a relationship that exists at the will of those who enter it. Will it for example be monogamous? Why could it not be 'open' at the will of those who enter into the relationship? Homosexual relationships are not known for rigorous monogamy."

Are you suggesting that marriage protects against all of that now? Blimey. You only have to look at the antics of straight married people to see the truth of it.

For instance, the couple who run a shop near to where I work were in the local paper recently for their swinger parties. Apparently, you can order the delivery of your newspapers and sign up for events at the same time. I can't meet their eyes now when I pop in for a lunchtime sausage roll.

I see the Silvio Berlusconi, Catholic, is in the news again for his special nights. Some of the religious proponents of the anti-abortion thingy recently seem to have rather dubious relationship histories. And so on.

Is it possible, do you think, that two people who love each other enough, whatever their sexual orientation, simply want to get married like many other people and settle down into their middle-age? Shocking thought, I know. :O

18 September 2011 at 17:31  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Why does what you've just written allow for gay marriage, but not the marriage (and benefits - you've mentioned inheritance, for instance) of a couple of spinsters?"

Why doesn't straight marriage now?

"Perhaps the majority are, but if the majority rules then you've just undermined the argument for gay marriage, haven't you? So why not marriages or groups of people?"

I don't think I have undermined it at all. I think you're crossing more dots than necessary to make your picture.

18 September 2011 at 17:34  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "It is surely not helpful that this important issue has twice now, descended into unpleasantness."

It's a forum. By long and wide observation of forums of all kinds, these things are pretty much inevitable. It'd be better that you simply didn't single me out for a kick rather than try now to police the whole forum to compensate. Just deep sigh every so often, and resort to sarcasm. That's my advice.

18 September 2011 at 17:40  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I thought of another one for marriage, though it's moree historic. It used to be used to strategically join aristocratic and bourgeoisie families for power and political reason. It still does on the Indian sub-continent and influences from that are obviously felt here too.

18 September 2011 at 17:44  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0 (18 September 2011 17:40)

Albert: "It is surely not helpful that this important issue has twice now, descended into unpleasantness."

I think you’ll find it’s the Inspector Albert is having problems with...

Right then Albert, let’s have it man, your issue is....??

18 September 2011 at 18:04  
Blogger AncientBriton said...

I am with Edward Leigh on this one but find it sad that some people take this and every other opportunity for what they appear to regard as humorous 'queer bashing'. We are all made in the image of God and in this light should be looking for understanding. That applies equally to those who have been granted equality in civil partnerships, accepting it for what it is, equal rights, not marriage which is ordained for the procreation of children, something civil partnerships plainly cannot achieve.

18 September 2011 at 18:14  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

DanJo

As you rightly point out - only the two people involved have to power to make a marriage mutually meaningful and beneficial - all the rest is largely superficial.

The historical premise of marriage is rooted in religious doctrine and essentially a declaration of intent before witnesses (earthly and or spiritual) between a man and a woman. Obligations are made one to the other and a legal contract is entered into subject to the delicate let out issue of the act of consumation.

Civil Partnerships were introduced to give equality of legitimacy to same sex couples in order to deal with legalities relating to shared assets, property and equality in consideration of residual estate matters - what would be the point of retaining CP if it was superceded by marriage.

Hijacking the traditionally accepted understanding of marriage in these ECHR driven times I think could lead eventually clergy being sued for refusal to conform to equality laws. This would put the whole hard won issue of acceptance and non discrimination back years.

In my view it's just plain crazy and clearly illiberal for the State to push people to doing something they can't agree with, without infringing their 'Human Rights' as well. - where would it all end?

The lawyers must be working overtime already to establish the definitions of what constitutes homosexual 'consumation'.

Too much too soon.

18 September 2011 at 18:18  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Can’t get a straight answer this afternoon !! (18 September 2011 18:14)

The Inspector General wishes to announce that he is NOT homophobic, but reserves the right to criticise homosexuals as they in turn criticise back !

Yes, he does uses humour occasionally...

Off your high horses please, would-be blog police, if you don’t mind...

18 September 2011 at 18:24  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dread: "Hijacking the traditionally accepted understanding of marriage in these ECHR driven times I think could lead eventually clergy being sued for refusal to conform to equality laws. This would put the whole hard won issue of acceptance and non discrimination back years."

I really hope that doesn't happen. That falls into a matter of conscience unlike the adoption agencies but similar to opt-outs for doctors over abortion. A minister expected to perform a religious marriage by the State against his religious convictions where the act is part of the religion is wrong. That is different to expecting a registrar in a register office to marry people in a civil ceremony. That falls into the vegans working in a butchers scenario ... i.e. get another job if the work bothers you to the point of refusal.

18 September 2011 at 18:37  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dread: "The lawyers must be working overtime already to establish the definitions of what constitutes homosexual 'consumation'."

I never really got the insistence on the consummation thing. Is that something historic to do with the ability to produce heirs? Surely a 21day cool-off period, like signing a credit contract, would be enough so that the small number of people who haven't actually tried the goods beforehand aren't sold a dud?

18 September 2011 at 18:41  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

DanJo

"sold a dud" :-D he-he-he

When lawyers get themselves in knots questioning what the meaning ofis is - nothing will be too contestable.

I personally know of one couple whose wedding I attended in the 70s was annulled on the grounds of non consumation. How it was defined and or argued I don't know - but it must have to be addressed before the law is changed.

18 September 2011 at 18:53  
Blogger graham wood said...

"The Government has to recognize that this is a steam train on a collision course with the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church. Same sex couples already have all the legal advantages of marriage and can have a blessing in those churches which want to do them without any change in the law"

This is a timely and important statement by Edward Leigh. The sort which should have been issued by either of our two Archbishops or other bishops who largely remain silent.

He argues his, and the Christian case against this move very soundly, and particularly the point that 'same sex couples already have all the legal advantages of marriage' Indeed.

The question arises: why then should they require anything more?
More important: why should there be therefore any change in the law? Who has called for such a change in the law? The general public? A single church denomination? Any Christian leader? None, except a vociferous, even fanatical, tiny minority of homosexual ideologues.
The 'steam train collision course' is not primarily with the RC or Anglican churches per se, as rather with fundamental Christian teaching assumed and taught throughout Scripture.
As others have pointed out it is a direct attack upon the essence of Christian marriage which is recognised as a lifelong and exclusively heterosexual union of one man and one woman for life.
That, and that union only, is a picture of the spiritual union between Christ and the Church, and as such is sacred.
For that reason alone, apart from others, marriage is not to be the object of secular decisions in or out of Parliament. Much less to be manipulated by homosexuals for their own ideological ends.

18 September 2011 at 19:24  
Blogger Arden Forester said...

Edward Leigh is quite right. Well thought out piece. Of course the gay lobby will not rest until they have every traditionally minded Christian either racked up for daring to oppose them or had their minds suitably altered.

I'm surprised Cameron has hitched himself to this wagon.

18 September 2011 at 19:35  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Albert it seems we are back with marrying the horse or maybe as a spinster I could marry Tom the cat, he loves me :-))) Only jesting.
It seems the clever Danj0 hasn't got an answer for you.
I can't understand when gays have equal legal status now why they want the whole of the Christian Church to change it's liturgy just for their piddling minority group can justify what they do is the same in the eyes of God as a heterosexual couple. Well it isn't, and they are not the same as a hetero couple and never will be. They are not a pair of opposites with a vagina and a penis as The Bible states there has to be. Their union can never be consummated.

The reason the Catholic Church is so popular is because it stands firm like a rock in stormy weather, and I hope it does throughout this attack too.

18 September 2011 at 19:36  
Blogger len said...

The whole point of getting married is in my opinion to form a covenant relationship between two people of opposite sex in line with Biblical ideals.

'and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'?
(Matthew 19:5) This is a union between a man and a woman the purpose of forming a secure family unit ,one of the building blocks of a stable secure Society. This marriage is in line with the Heavenly order which God will bless.
It is quite apparent to me that a same sex union is not going to be blessed by God so the 'marriage 'from that aspect is meaningless.

There are small very vocal minorities whose intention is to force their acceptance on Society by whatever means are at their disposal.
There are those who wish to overturn our Society and to destroy the foundations and to re -construct more in line with their own particular tastes and desires and the public has been 'hoodwinked ' into accepting this through the surreptitious use of Political Correctness and the clever manipulation of language to gain their ends.

The family unit is under constant attack and has been undermined by consecutive Governments and this latest move comes as no surprise.
No wonder our Society is a 'broken Society'and this present Government has done nothing to repair the damage in fact it is making things progressively worse.

18 September 2011 at 20:02  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Marie1797

The Inspector doubts that any militant homosexual really grasps what they are asking. Traditionally hedonist, it must be to them the world is at their command. And these rights, where did they come from ??

Young gay students are best ignored. They are still coming to terms with who they are and just lack maturity. No point listening to their gripes until they’re in their 20s. They might have a bit of sense about them at that age...

18 September 2011 at 20:05  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

Why doesn't straight marriage now?

Because spinsters don't produce children. But what's your answer?

18 September 2011 at 20:43  
Blogger Albert said...

Just for clarity's sake: let the spinsters be a couple of sisters. Why shouldn't they marry, if gays can?

18 September 2011 at 20:45  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "It seems the clever Danj0 hasn't got an answer for you."

Eh? Haven't I trounced his objections so far? Albert and I debate like a game of squash, it's mostly who controls the T it seems rather than actually making points. That's why I get bored with the long drawn-out ones. I'm on the T now and there's a form to that specific point that I'm not going to just give up.

"The reason the Catholic Church is so popular is because it stands firm like a rock in stormy weather, and I hope it does throughout this attack too."

No, it's because it brainwashes kids here and homes in on the vulnerable in other parts of the world.

18 September 2011 at 20:52  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Because spinsters don't produce children. But what's your answer?"

Neither do infertile couples or couples where the woman is post-menopause but we happily allow those. It doesn't sound like a terribly good reason to me.

"Just for clarity's sake: let the spinsters be a couple of sisters. Why shouldn't they marry, if gays can?"

Why don't we allow sisters to marry now? Or fathers and daughters? It's not because of your personal teleological backstop is it? So why not?

18 September 2011 at 20:58  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Len: "The whole point of getting married is in my opinion to form a covenant relationship between two people of opposite sex in line with Biblical ideals."

Cool. Well, let the biblically-oriented get on with that and the rest of us can carry on with the civil/social version. I have no objection there.

18 September 2011 at 21:00  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

Marriage is essentially ordered to the procreation of children and their upbringing. It happens that in some situations children are not possible. But that is (to use Aristotle's language), purely accidental. You can't obviously decree in advance that the couple must produce children. However, in order to have the stability necessary for marriage and the well-being of children, the rule must apply regardless of whether the couple will in fact produce children.

Why don't we allow sisters to marry now? Or fathers and daughters? It's not because of your personal teleological backstop is it? So why not

No I think it is teleological. Heterosexuals produce children. Children generally fare better when brought up by both parents, society fares badly when children don't fare well. Therefore, it is in all our interests to support the relationship of heterosexuals, this we call marriage.

It's not necessarily a religious thing, it relates to what happens when heterosexuals get together. Undermine marriage and children end up not knowing who their fathers are, then end up without stability and role models. And then we all suffer. Including you.

What you're trying to do is trying to justify a totally different kind of marriage on the basis of hard cases, such as infertility. But as we know, hard cases make bad law.

So what's your answer as to why gays should have the benefits of marriage, but not sisters?

it's because it brainwashes kids here and homes in on the vulnerable in other parts of the world

I'm a convert and I don't come from another part of the world. Your kind of one size fits all, pop psychology does not help matters much. Why is secularism so successful at the moment? Because in our selfish culture many can't relate to the idea that there might be some absolute truth and absolute goodness. Does that fit everyone who doesn't believe?

18 September 2011 at 21:43  
Blogger Julie said...

Your Grace,


Thought you should have a look at this;

http://linenonthehedgerow.blogspot.com/2011/09/homosexual-lobby-adopts-animal-rights.html

18 September 2011 at 21:53  
Blogger Albert said...

Marie,

The reason the Catholic Church is so popular is because it stands firm like a rock in stormy weather, and I hope it does throughout this attack too

The Catholic Church will stand firm on this, and in the process perhaps expose the violence that under-pins this proposal (though, I suspect it will be Anglican clergy that will be in the front line and most vulnerable, because the CofE probably won't back them as the Catholic Church will back our priests!).

18 September 2011 at 21:55  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

len

Have you been reading Papal Encyclicals on this subject?

There is a consistent tradition, I repeat, tradition within Christianity on the relationship between men and the women, the sanctity of marriage, the purpose of sex and the moral objections to birth control and abortion.

The Roman Catholic Church alone in the West has stood consistently firm doctrinally on all these matters.

How can so many theologians from so many other denominations be so wrong? There is, as you repeatly say, only one Spirit of Truth. The lack of clear spiritual leadership on this most fundamental of issues surely argues against individual readings and interpretations of scripture?

18 September 2011 at 21:59  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Albert

Normal, everyday Roman Catholic parishioners will back their Priests on this!

18 September 2011 at 22:01  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Marriage is essentially ordered to the procreation of children and their upbringing."

That's a statement of faith. Marriage is both more and less than that as I indicated in my previous list.

"However, in order to have the stability necessary for marriage and the well-being of children, the rule must apply regardless of whether the couple will in fact produce children."

Albert, people marry in their 50s sometimes and everyone is very happy for that to happen. It's not purely accidental that they won't have children at all. And some people deliberately choose not to have children. Your "must apply" there is just your desire, it does not follow from the institution.

"No I think it is teleological. [...] Therefore, it is in all our interests to support the relationship of heterosexuals, this we call marriage."

You have said yourself that politicians often don't understand theology such as your teleological form and I'm pretty sure most people wouldn't know (say) the Kalam Cosmoslogical Argument. So it's your interpretation of marriage there. As for supporting the relationship for heterosexuals, I'm in complete agreement. But no-one is suggesting that hetereosexuals cannot married exactly as they do now.

"Undermine marriage and children end up not knowing who their fathers are, then end up without stability and role models."

You'd have to show that gay marriage necessarily undermines heterosexual marriage to make that claim properly. Also, some people claim that divorce is too easy in the UK. Obviously, seperation is much easier now too especially as people don't even need to be married to have children respectably. In fact, the biblical position on divorce is much stronger than most people would accept I think. Surely, there should be a huge outcry in the Tory Party and elsewhere about divorce first? But there won't be because that affects too many people. As soon as the religious try to stop divorce or make people marry then they will be social pariahs.

"What you're trying to do is trying to justify a totally different kind of marriage on the basis of hard cases, such as infertility. But as we know, hard cases make bad law."

No, I'm trying to get to the bottom of what marriage actually is now and why it should not already cover gay people too. As I said, I consider it a matter of social justice and I told you I would happily defend that statement. Also, you know that some people have children and then separate, recognising their underlying gay orientation. Isn't having two adults supporting a household with kids in it better than one all things being equal? And wouldn't that be a better, more stable arrangement if those two adults were married and sharing the sort of pair-bonding love that other married people share?

"So what's your answer as to why gays should have the benefits of marriage, but not sisters?"

Why should gay people not under the current justifications for marriage? I don't think we've dismissed that yet.

"I'm a convert and I don't come from another part of the world. Your kind of one size fits all, pop psychology does not help matters much."

I bet you're not a convert from Islam or Hinduism. No, it doesn't help much but it helps balance the similar stuff in the reverse direction. In Marie's case, she seems to think people are gay for fashion reasons. Even trans-gender people if I recall correctly. Unfortunately, for people who don't know any gay people socially that might seem plausible even though it's just risible to me.

18 September 2011 at 22:18  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Julie: "Thought you should have a look at this; [link]"

That's a terrible piece of writing in that link. Almost as bad as Englishman's thing about the changeable sexuality of rams.

18 September 2011 at 22:22  
Blogger outsider said...

Will someone please spare a thought for HM Queen Elizabeth.

As I understand it, HM takes not only her Coronation oath but also her personal religious beliefs very seriously, which must include the continued existence of marriage.

These days, the monarch does not appear to actually sign Acts of Parliament but surely must still give her passive consent to the "democratic will".

Could HM stomach the proposed legislation unless it permitted existing marriages to continue? Or would we be faced with an abdication crisis? If so, there are no guesses as to who would be the losers.

18 September 2011 at 22:51  
Blogger Jonathan Graham said...

It's good to see that there are some Conservatives left. Well said Edward Leigh. Marriage is the union of a man and a woman. When did someone first think that is was otherwise? Who was that person?

18 September 2011 at 23:05  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Outsider

Good point, our sovereign as head of state MUST approve all legislation. Constitutional crisis looming – all for a tiny handful of noisy sexual deviants !!!

18 September 2011 at 23:15  
Blogger non mouse said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

18 September 2011 at 23:27  
Blogger Sean Baggaley said...

"Women's sufferage is trivial beyond description when compared to the definition of marriage. The later[sic] is the essential foundation of civilization."

"Trivial"? Seriously?

In England, the concept of "marriage" was originally just a property contract—women were considered property, nothing more, and their parents had to pay a dowry to the future husband for taking her off their hands. Marriages were also often arranged between families without much say from the two parties to be wed. It has since become a bastardised form of courtship and mating ritual.

It's only during the past couple of centuries that modern notions of "romance"—essentially a French literary invention—have been involved in what was once, for the most part, just a formal convenience.

That "marriage" today is so often conflated with secular law was always an accident waiting to happen. What's needed is a formal separation of religious "marriage" with civil, secular, "partnership".

As Edward Leigh MP points out, we already have this in place, but perhaps it needs to be made much more explicit, with some suitable Public Information Films produced to explain the differences.

Nevertheless, a Civil Partnership could, and should, be possible between any two or more consenting adults. There's no reason why we should enshrine monogamy in law when there's no basis for it. Not every religion supports it and a secular state should have no truck with dictating what should and shouldn't be legally permitted, so long as no others are harmed by it.

A "marriage" should be legally defined as a religious rite with no recognition in civil law. If you want a traditional marriage, you must perform both ceremonies: the religious one, and the secular, civil, one, although there's nothing to prevent individual religions from offering to provide both services—in the bureaucratic sense—at the same time, as some already do.

Thus everyone is happy, and no animals are harmed.

18 September 2011 at 23:35  
Blogger non mouse said...

Soooo. On the theme of this hedonists' distraction: Brussell's Puppets have given you little boys halcyon days out in the playground, ... so you needn't set your (putative) masculine mentalities to any other Deconstruction that might be afoot.

No matter, for example, that "The next $11 billion US instalment of Greece’s first bailout package depends on a review of the country’s finances. The payout was originally scheduled for the end of September and the Greek government has said that without the new loan it will run out of money next month ... and eventually default on its massive debts." (Google offers a link or two on this.)

A few pesky Americans may be quite disturbed about this assault on their failing economy... but hey -- let naive British plebs keep tearing western civilization to shreds; let them grind the pieces into dust; encourage them just to beat up their own kind by genderism, sectarianism, or any other polarizing nonsense.

That way they'll never notice when atheist science provides Huxley-type battery farms to replace families. Advanced "masculine" thinkers won't need marriage then, so genuine women can be phased out.

Think of it! Adam's rib, back in it's proper place!! No woman's heel to crush the head of the serpent or its bifurcated tongue!! Then, the Useful Idiots can carry on playing leap-frog to while away their lotos-soma-eating days. The remaining neophiles will make brilliant, boyish, slaves: for slaking the fires of Hell in summer, and stoking them in winter.

18 September 2011 at 23:40  
Blogger Atlas shrugged said...

When you find a dog, that has had its back legs crushed under a fast moving car, and half its brains splattered on the sidewalk squealing in agony; what do you do?

Yes, correct, you put it out of its misery ASAP.

So it must be with our society as a whole, and more especially this once fine nation.

Our energies would be better spent sorting out our own houses, then wasting any on a sick beast that is well past salvation.

If the people within a society have enough of there own houses in order the welfare of the whole, can and will look after itself.

Not only this, history tells us that it can and will do so under even the most challenging of circumstances, so long as the people as a whole have their individual acts together.

The institution of marriage as a whole, is in this regard very similar to society as a whole.

The primary purpose of a marriage contract is property rights most especially the future property rights of the resultant children, and grandchildren.

If the CofE had its particular house in order, there is NOTHING neither government nor specular society could do to fundamentally harm it.

The CofE's worse enemy is not therefore secular society, the NWO, Atheism in general, or gay marriage in particular.

The greatest and most serious enemy of The CofE, is The Church of England itself.

An organization is supported, or held up by the botton, but it rots from the very top.

The CofE is therefore holed below the water mark, and at best only moving the chairs belatedly around it's heaving deck.

Having said that, the welfare, or survival chances of particular nations or established religions is of no importance whatsoever. What matters is ETERNAL salvation, which is predicated upon an individuals record when put before his creator.

So it is with The CofE PLC, it is also with The UK PLC.

The body is still flipping around quite vigorously, but the head rotted into vile smelling mush, more then 50 years ago.

19 September 2011 at 00:44  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I don't comment on non mouse's bile as a rule but that thing about the Greek debt is worse than she says I think. I'm thinking that the Greeks may actually default tomorrow and that will take over the news for sure.

19 September 2011 at 06:22  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Mr. Leigh seems to be labouring (sic) under the misconception that we have a recognisably Conservative government to whom he can address his concerns. I hope he can learn to live with the disappointment.

While I do not have a dog in the gay marriage fight I have to point out that if marriage is such a firm rock upon which to build society, how come there is such a high divorce rate?

19 September 2011 at 07:03  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

Given the words in his Grace's final paragraph:
Perhaps one should remember that the EC church is one of the most evil oragnisations on the planet.
Come on, even its' great rival religion, communism deliberately uses the same organisational structure and command system, and deliberately so!

19 September 2011 at 08:04  
Blogger len said...

Dodo,
If I set up a web site and called myself the vicar of Dodo and proceeded to speak FOR you, how would you respond?.
If I made up rules and regulations(without your knowledge or authority) how would you respond?.
If I altered some of your comments and said I did so because I have Dodo`s authority to do so, how would that make you feel?.
If I gathered a group of followers and said these are the' true followers of Dodo' how would you respond?.

And then to top it all I then claimed that Peter (who I never knew) placed his authority on me and I am divinely appointed to change scripture and who ever opposes me will go straight to hell.

How would you feel about that Dodo?.

19 September 2011 at 08:14  
Blogger bluedog said...

Your Grace

The dilemma facing Dave is potentially lethal and not something his 'Heir to Blair' PR skills equip him to manage - a war on two fronts.

The first front is that long delineated by His Grace and now perfectly summarised by Edward Leigh MP in the article reprinted above. The second front of course is the complete discrediting of the Europhile position by the interminable Eurozone economic crisis.

If the 1922 Committee is up in arms about Europe, we can be absolutely certain that opinion regarding gay marriage and same sex adoption is equally toxic.

Dave is therefore facing two very significant trials of character and judgement. His comments on gay marriage leave him no room for manouvre. His decision to renege on the EU referendum is an act that leaves no room for compromise.
But his party support on both positions has evaporated.

The PM has check-mated himself by his own opportunism. His options are to Recant or Resign

19 September 2011 at 08:42  
Blogger Chaconia said...

A recognizably conservative government would not support gender free passports either
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2038965/The-gender-free-British-passport-Uk-travellers-longer-declare-sex-spare-feelings-transgender-people.html

19 September 2011 at 09:10  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

DanJ0 said... "Everyone will wonder what all the fuss was about after a couple of years, I'm sure. It was probably like this when women got the vote: slippery slopes to oblivion, skies falling in, society turned upside down"

Do you know what ... I almost find myself in agreement with DanJ0 but not with the same blasé sentiment.

And I would compare it more with the attitude to Sunday trading than to women's suffrage.

Those of us who remembered the campaign to "keep Sunday special" will remember the prophecies that were made about the consequences of unrestricted, 7 day trading. I would argue that most (if not all) of those prophecies have been fulfilled. However, amongst the shoppers in most supermarkets on a typical Sunday you'll now discover the congregations of many churches and probably even the vicar. As in the days of Daniel, the churches capacity to become augmented into the culture of the world is sadly, apparently boundless. But as with Daniel, there are always a handful who are willing to stand apart. I doubt very much it will be the Church of England though who will put up a nominal fight, then roll over and start aiming to offer the "best Gay weddings to the Glory of God".

19 September 2011 at 09:26  
Blogger Anabaptist said...

Leigh must be a thicko. He has failed to realise that:
(a) There is not a Conservative government; the Tories lost the general election. The coalition has provided a wonderful get-out clause for Cameron to renege on any promise or pretence he made that could lead to the impression that he is a conservative.
(b) There is a massive difference between Conservative and conservative.
(c) Cameron may be a Conservative, but he is by no stretch of the imagination a conservative.
(d) The Party he (Leigh) supports has been hijacked by virtually unprincipled managerial leftists.
(e) Leigh's only current contribution is to help maintain the false impression that the Tory party is conservative, so he serves as a useful idiot to help keep the rank and file on board.
(f) Just as our country has been stolen by left-leaning, PR principle-free pragmatists, so too has the Tory party.
(g) The only proper recourse for people like Leigh is to ditch his allegiance to the party and expose it for the sham that it is.

19 September 2011 at 09:41  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@Anabaptist ...

Amen (as usual). And a very good sideways swipe at Cranmer & Hannan et al!

I'd go further. The proper recourse for anyone who is interested in political reform of our nation is to ditch allegiance to any political party. And also refuse to vote for ANY of the main political parties at every opportunity you are given to vote. BNP, UKIP, Independent ... whatever is on offer as long as it's not Lib/Lab/Con

19 September 2011 at 10:30  
Blogger bluedog said...

Mr Anabapist @ 09.41, have you failed to realise that whether or not Mr Leigh is a thicko is immaterial?

Mr Leigh is simply saying what he believes. If he can persuade enough people within the Conservative Party to support him, he starts to influence Dave.

Similarly with Mark Pritchard, who may or may not be a thicko. Mr Pritchard represents a lobby group whose supporters have emboldened Mr P to challenge Mr C.

This communicant is not very bright but in situations like this he exclaims 'Game Theory'. At the risk of getting totally out of his depth, this communicant repectfully draws your attention to Markov decision processes and Markov chains, all of which seem to be working against Dave.

In short, there are a number of variables in this situation which are beyond Dave's control and all of which have potential to damage his position.

If Mr Leigh is a thicko and does not understand the rules, his potential to do damage to Dave is that much greater.

19 September 2011 at 10:53  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@Bluedog ...

If Dave's got any sense he already realises he's going to be a 1 term 1/2 prime-minister and that his future lies as some euro-commissioner. So he's making decisions that will curry favour with his future employers and probably doesn't give a toss what Leigh or Dorries or the 1922 committee or the conservative population think or want. I wouldn't be surprised if he calls an election early ... just as soon as his Euro career is secured.

19 September 2011 at 11:03  
Blogger bluedog said...

Interesting observations, Mr Rebel Saint @ 11.03.

On reflection, Peter Mandelson would appear to be Dave's model citizen/ideal human being; influential, europhile and gay.

They'll make a lovely couple.

19 September 2011 at 11:21  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

How about a little of rendering unto Ceasar that belongs to Caasar. Perhaps the title of "civil marriage" could be extended "civil partnerships" since as has been pointed out they have the same rights. And then the definition of "religous weddings" could be left to religions to argue out among themeselves for the next few hundred years.

I for one would fundamentally object to the Church or one particular schism being allowed to define what are our own institutions - rather than allowing the normal democratic processes.

19 September 2011 at 11:27  
Blogger Kidz Klub Bradford said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

19 September 2011 at 12:07  
Blogger Jeremy said...

I was delighted to read Mr DanJ0's comment on the 18th at 21:00 - "Cool. Well, let the biblically-oriented get on with that and the rest of us can carry on with the civil/social version. I have no objection there."

Since marriage is a religious ceremony invoking the authority of God in joining together two people in line with His system and since the civil partnership extends all the same legal standing as the marriage to those who choose to use that system, why would those people who refuse to acknowledge the teachings of that God insist on His blessing on their union?

I think that Mr DanJ0 has inadvertantly answered our question of him in the most excellent way, by removing the ground from his own argument.

19 September 2011 at 12:21  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

As Cranmer will be aware, the Government has already tried to draw the Church into supporting the new view of marriage, and the fuzzy "civil partnerships". Clergy were instructed by registrars, when reading Banns and filling in registers, to cease using the words "Bachelor", "Spinster", "Widow" and "Widower", and simply to write "single" instead. Sensible clergy took no notice, partly because "single" has no strict legal definition; in common speech it means "unattached at the moment".

19 September 2011 at 12:44  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@tory boys never grow up ...

Are you having a laugh?! Allow "democratic process" to define marriage?! And you seem to have forgotten the 2nd part of the "render under to Caesar" quotation.

19 September 2011 at 13:07  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Rebel Saint

It is perfectly possible for both "civil" and "religous" marriages to coexist eg. as in France. What right do you have to tell those of religions other than your own or those of no religion as to what the legal definition should be.

19 September 2011 at 13:41  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

That's a statement of faith

It's not a statement of religious faith, for the point I was making would be (or at least would have been) widely accepted regardless of faith and culture.

Isn't the problem here that your position is immune to any argument or reason? You can continue to reject the idea that marriage is ordered towards children and family life until such time as I say it is so, by definition, at which point you will simply reject the definition. In other words, what you are doing, is what most commentators think is going on - removing any content from the idea of marriage.

I don't find your idea of social justice at all convincing. If that were so, you would be asking for marriage for other groups as well (like sisters). But you don't offer any explanation of why gays should be privileged above sisters. I think that is simply unjust.

But the truth is, if you extended marriage to include sisters and other groups, essentially you would extend it to everyone - and thereby dissolve the institution. Now why do you not argue that? Is it perhaps because, deep down you recognise that would be disastrous from the point of view of family life?

politicians often don't understand theology such as your teleological form and I'm pretty sure most people wouldn't know (say) the Kalam Cosmoslogical

These are philosophical categories, not theological ones.

19 September 2011 at 13:53  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

TBNGU
It's a civil partnership not a civil marriage, and what right have homosexuals got to dictate according to their beliefs what marriage should be? Marriage is a definition from the Bible (Adam & Eve first married couple) that has and will continue to define a healthy society.

Albert
I'm a firm believer in the cosmological discussion/argument that 13.7 billion yrs ago something (God) caused the development of a particle that split in two and rubbed together causing heat and the first light to appear from the friction in the blackness which was to become our universe.

Of course Danj0 being an atheist wants to eradicate marriage and while he's at it the Church too in the name of social justice.

19 September 2011 at 14:36  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Marie 1797

What rights have democratically elected goverments got to define how a civic marriage shoould be defined? Rather a lot in my view. You are entitled to participate in this decision on a one vote per person basis - waiving the bible does not entitle you to extra votes or a veto I'm afraid no matter how much you may wish.

I have never said that religous groups cannot define what constitutes a "religous marriage". But you forget that they have had some difficulty in doing this in recent times e.g. in respect of divorcees.

19 September 2011 at 14:57  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@TBNGU ...

You are rather missing the point. Marriage is not something that was dreamed up by lawyers or politicians. They merely codified it - they didn't define it. The "democratic process" can no more change the definition of a marriage than it can change the definition of "day". [Incidentally, I would like to know how the democratic process has given anyone the remit to redefine what marriage is - you seriously think that the people were casting their votes to give politicians the mandate to redefine what marriage is?!]

Marriages existence spans the whole of human history and is trans-cultural & trans-religious; and it's origins & purpose are pretty much the same throughout all of them.

There is stronger grounds to argue for it to include polygamy & bigamy than there is for it to include homosexuality.

19 September 2011 at 15:23  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

The "democratic process" can no more change the definition of a marriage than it can change the definition of "day".

So why are you worrying about what the government proposes in changing the title it attachs to civil partnerships. Given that some churches have added the divorced people to the those to whom it is prepared to extend marriage, and other societies also changed laws so that marriages could be "trans-cultural & trans-religious", I fail to see why society is able to add others who can be included within the legal definition of marriage should it so wish. Do you really think that homosexual "pairings" are really something that has only happened recently?

19 September 2011 at 15:46  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Rebel Saint

Who says that defintions cannot change over time - I could argue that you were artificial and not a nice person; but, before you get offended you might wish to have a look here: http://writinghood.com/style/grammar/eight-words-which-have-completely-changed-their-meaning-over-time/

19 September 2011 at 15:52  
Blogger Albert said...

Rebel Saint,

There is stronger grounds to argue for it to include polygamy & bigamy than there is for it to include homosexuality

This is an important point, why gay marriage, but not marriage of other kinds of relationship? It's unjust to them isn't it, to extend marriage to gays but not others? Just because homosexuality seems more chique at the moment than say polygamy or spinsters who are sisters living together.

The only way to make it all equal for absolutely everyone is simply to abolish marriage altogether. Perhaps if that was proposed, we might all begin to think about why we want to keep marriage.

But really this is just a political stunt by a Government which is going to look nasty because of its economic reforms, and is looking for something to say "look we're really nice and liberal underneath." I'm surprised the gay community seems to be allowing themselves to be so used.

19 September 2011 at 15:58  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Albert

It is quite legitimate to ask such questions - the point I'm making is that any argument should be on such a basis rather than on the basis this is what the Bible tells us - which I'm afraid isn't over convincing to those of us who don't see it as an instruction manual.

I think I would start from the position that society should confers the privilege, status and title on the institution of marriage because society benefits from the stability of the relationships that it creates, the selflessness that it encourages and because it allows a manifest expression of love between people - it also puts a break on certain social "bads" such as promiscuity. It would appear to me that same sex marriages are now capable of delivering such benefits and should be given an equivalent legal status to conventional marriages. I would find it a lot harder to make the same argument for bigamous or polygamous marriages. That said if there was a political majority against such a change, as there has been for much of my life - I would be happy to accept such a position.

19 September 2011 at 16:23  
Blogger DP111 said...

Slippery slope

Predators with Ph.D.s
By Chris Banescu

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/09/predators_with_phds.html

As with homosexaul sex, now starts the normalisation of paedophilia.

19 September 2011 at 16:52  
Blogger Albert said...

this is what the Bible tells us

Agreed, this is why I have argued on non-scriptural grounds. Christian doctrine normally thinks of marriage as a naturally occurring institution (incidentally, this is why it falls outside the power of the state to change it).

Firstly, I think your definition of marriage (or the purposes of marriage) is different from the one that has been traditionally accepted. If you have to re-define marriage in order to permit gay-marriage, doesn't that prove the point that gay marriage isn't marriage after all?

Secondly, gay-marriage requires society to accept your redefinition of marriage. Why impose this? In fact, of course, most people who don't accept gay marriage, won't even if it is legal. What's their status? Should they be punished?

Thirdly, I do not see how your definition of marriage does not also allow the marriage of (say) two sisters. If this is a matter of justice, shouldn't the gay community be campaigning for them too?

Fourthly, it is not clear to me that gay marriage will stop promiscuity. Of all my gay friends, only one couple has stayed together for any length of time. Another couple is (frankly) "open", shall we say.

Fifthly, I don't think the majority in favour is worth much. Straight people don't really know what goes on in the gay community. In order to have an open and informed debate, that would need to change. I don't expect that will happen, as a gay friend put it to me: them that know don't care, them that care, don't know. The judgment of the great British public is thus, one of ignorance. If I was gay, I would want more than that for the basis of this change.

Finally, I'm not at all clear that you have explained why this shouldn't apply to polygamous marriages - and if your definition of the goods of marriage can be doubted (as it can) marriage certainly could apply to them. Indeed, if we can all redefine marriage as we like, we might as well just abolish it.

19 September 2011 at 16:55  
Blogger Owl said...

I am afraid that the aggresive Gay front has aliented a lot of previously tolerant straights.

Marriage has always been between a man and a woman and I would like to keep it that way.

Homosexuals can have a Parriage or whatever they want to call it, but it is not a marriage and never will be.

As far as I am concerned, the likes of Summerskill can piss off to regions unknown.

19 September 2011 at 16:59  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@Tory Boys Never Grow Up ... "Do you really think that homosexual "pairings" are really something that has only happened recently?"

I am aware of that fact, but it also somewhat undermines your own argument. Homosexual partnering is almost certainly an ancient thing, yet despite millennia of social development there has never been homosexual marriage. Marriage has always been primarily about the rearing & socialisation of the next generation. If it moves away from that then there is absolutely no reason for it not to be extended to ANY relationships, between any number of parties. And once every relationship is special, none of them are.

The most telling thing of all is that a minority of a minority are actually requesting this. Why is it such a priority for so many governments when there are so many other reforms even to marriage that would be more popular? It is to do with a social ideology more than 'equality' or 'social justice'. It is about trying to undermine the family more than trying to elevate homosexuality.

19 September 2011 at 17:16  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Firstly, I think your definition of marriage (or the purposes of marriage) is different from the one that has been traditionally accepted.

Not arguing otherwise

Secondly, gay-marriage requires society to accept your redefinition of marriage.

Not arguing otherwise - acceptance by the general body of society is important. It is worth noting that some religous bodies also accept such a redefinition e.g. the Quakers/Liberal Jews

Thirdly, I do not see how your definition of marriage does not also allow the marriage of (say) two sisters. If this is a matter of justice, shouldn't the gay community be campaigning for them too?

I don't think society or sisters are pushing for this. There is a genuine problem re pension rights where two sisters/brothers live together with on depending on the other which does need to be addressed however

Fourthly, it is not clear to me that gay marriage will stop promiscuity. Of all my gay friends, only one couple has stayed together for any length of time. Another couple is (frankly) "open", shall we say.

Your experience is different from what I've heard of - is there any quantitative evidence as to whether civil partnerships have increased or redeuced the amount of time homosexuals stay together?

Fifthly, I don't think the majority in favour is worth much. Straight people don't really know what goes on in the gay community.

Oh dear - then what should we do re-elect another people. No one is stopping you expressing your views and attempting to change those of others - the Christian lobby is one of the strongest and best organised there is in the country. I cannot think of a better system (or less worse if you wish) for deciding such matters. And there I suspect we have to agree to disagree.

Finally, I'm not at all clear that you have explained why this shouldn't apply to polygamous marriages

I don't see much selflessness or love in a polygamous marriage on part of the male and an awful lot of potential for abuse.

19 September 2011 at 17:28  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

DP111 said...
"Slippery slope.
As with homosexaul sex, now starts the normalisation of paedophilia."


Oh, that started years ago. It seems some regard paedophilia as sex with children younger than 9 years old - at the moment!

"The positive nature of some child-adult sexual relationships is not confined to non-Western cultures. Several of my friends – gay and straight, male and female –had sex with adults from the ages of nine to 13. None feel they were abused. All say it was their conscious choice and gave them great joy. While it may be impossible to condone paedophilia, it is time society acknowledged the truth that not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive and harmful."
(Peter Thatchell 1997)

19 September 2011 at 17:30  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Marriage has always been primarily about the rearing & socialisation of the next generation.

And I see no reason why this should change - but there have been plent of marriages e.g. those beyond child rearing age - where this primary objective cannot be pursued.

If it moves away from that then there is absolutely no reason for it not to be extended to ANY relationships, between any number of parties.

I thought I had given a few.


It is about trying to undermine the family more than trying to elevate homosexuality.


That is your view - not mine.

19 September 2011 at 17:33  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DP111 (19 September 2011 16:52)

Human depravity in academia. It had to come.

Is there a connection between homosexuality and paedophilia perhaps ????

19 September 2011 at 17:48  
Blogger Albert said...

Tory boy,

Not arguing otherwise

Yes, but I didn't just say it was a redefinition of marriage, I said

If you have to re-define marriage in order to permit gay-marriage, doesn't that prove the point that gay marriage isn't marriage after all?

Again, I asked why should it be imposed?

I don't think society or sisters are pushing for this.

But that might just be because sisters have the good sense to recognise that their relationship couldn't be a marriage. That hardly justifies gay marriage. On the other hand, the married sisters may come now - part of the need for a debate first, is to find out where the logic goes. If the best that can be said against married sisters is that no one is pushing for it, it would appear that justice would demand they should be allowed to marry anyway.

is there any quantitative evidence as to whether civil partnerships have increased or redeuced the amount of time homosexuals stay together?

A good question. Perhaps it should be addressed before we make this change. Similarly, as I said, the population really needs to be informed about this change, and in order for that to happen, the gay community should be a whole lot more open about its activities.

I don't see much selflessness or love in a polygamous marriage on part of the male and an awful lot of potential for abuse

I agree of course. But supporters of polygamy have answers to this. They point out that having an enclosed relationship with only one other person can be selfish too, but that a man who learns to love more women is being more generous! Similarly, a woman who allows her husband to marry another woman enables that woman to have children, which she might otherwise not manage. I am sure that those traditions which have polygamy would have good reasons to support it.

19 September 2011 at 18:27  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Rebel: "It is about trying to undermine the family more than trying to elevate homosexuality."

What purpose is served by that? How curious.

19 September 2011 at 19:03  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Jeremy: "Since marriage is a religious ceremony invoking the authority of God in joining together two people in line with His system and since the civil partnership extends all the same legal standing as the marriage to those who choose to use that system, why would those people who refuse to acknowledge the teachings of that God insist on His blessing on their union?"

Jeremey, get yourself down to a register office and watch a civil marriage being performed. It's a legal marriage and it cannot have religious language in the vows. I trust you'll be even more delighted with this response than my last one.

19 September 2011 at 19:21  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@DanJ0 ... What purpose? None what-so-ever.

I think the root-cause is spiritual. You might say that some people are just malevolent and seek to kill, steal & destroy - often because of some perceived sense of 'injustice' or more accurately, sheer spite born out of envy.

[I'm certainly not tarring all homosexuals like that, but there seems to be a vociferous minority who are]

19 September 2011 at 19:31  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

@DanJ0 ... What purpose? None what-so-ever.

I think the root-cause is spiritual. You might say that some people are just malevolent and seek to kill, steal & destroy - often because of some perceived sense of 'injustice' or more accurately, sheer spite born out of envy.

[I'm certainly not tarring all homosexuals like that, but there seems to be a vociferous minority who are]

19 September 2011 at 19:31  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "It's not a statement of religious faith, for the point I was making would be (or at least would have been) widely accepted regardless of faith and culture."

It's a statement of your religious faith and also an assertion on your part that it must be so.

"Isn't the problem here that your position is immune to any argument or reason? You can continue to reject the idea that marriage is ordered towards children and family life until such time as I say it is so, by definition, at which point you will simply reject the definition."

I'm arguing from what is now using a 'like treated alike' type argument for a change. It's a common approach. You know you want to say exactly what you are trying to avoid: you want to define marriage to suit yourself and what suits you is that gay marriage cannot be marriage by your definition.

"I don't find your idea of social justice at all convincing."

I don't think your denial of the social justice argument is at all convincing.

"If that were so, you would be asking for marriage for other groups as well (like sisters)."

Why would I be doing that, Albert?

"But you don't offer any explanation of why gays should be privileged above sisters. I think that is simply unjust."

Why limit it to sisters in your argument? Under the current arrangements, a brother and sister or a father and daughter cannot legally get married. What's the basis there? They're a man and a women. They may be capable of having children. They could even potentially adopt children. They could set up a home and a family and socialise the next generation just as you want to define marriage to be. On what basis are you denying them the opportunity that other heterosexual couples can enjoy?

19 September 2011 at 19:34  
Blogger len said...

Are 'same sex' marriages a 'good thing?'will they enhance Society and make relationships more stable and enduring or will they devalue and trivialise marriage as defined in Biblical terms?

Well, some reports state that the average homosexual has between 20 and 106 partners per year . The average heterosexual has 8 partners in a lifetime, it is quite apparent which forms the most stable foundation for the family unit, the very bedrock of Society.

19 September 2011 at 19:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Rebel: "I think the root-cause is spiritual. You might say that some people are just malevolent and seek to kill, steal & destroy - often because of some perceived sense of 'injustice' or more accurately, sheer spite born out of envy."

*shrug*

Some people think that Zionists brought down the Twin Towers too. Really, I think some gay people just want to get marriage like anyone else. Simple explanations are often the best I find.

19 September 2011 at 19:37  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Fourthly, it is not clear to me that gay marriage will stop promiscuity. Of all my gay friends, only one couple has stayed together for any length of time. Another couple is (frankly) "open", shall we say."

Are you saying that gays and lesbians are inherently promiscuous? That it's something to do with same sex attraction which makes people have sex with more partners or not value monogamy in a relationship? How curious.

19 September 2011 at 19:42  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

If you have to re-define marriage in order to permit gay-marriage, doesn't that prove the point that gay marriage isn't marriage after all?

No it just proves that gay marriage isn't marriage at present but will be once the boundary is redefined.

Again, I asked why should it be imposed?

Because society imposes all sorts of things on people, and sometimes people have to consent to what society as a whole wants, especially with regard to how it wishes to see disputes resolved between conflicting groups. There are of course boundaries on how far society goes on imposing those obligations (and indeed didn't Nye Bevan (?) say we can judge how civilised a society is by its treatment of minorities) - so I wouldn't go as far telling religions how they should order their own affairs. I am sorry but I have never seen much willingness on the part of some religous groups not to impose their views and practices on others.

"it would appear that justice would demand they should be allowed to marry anyway."

I find it difficult to say that "justice" requires you to make changes as to what is permitted by society - when there are not significan numbers pushing for a change from the status quo and there has been no consideration of the matter in hand. Such an approach might lead to all sorts of false and unsupportable assumptions being made.

19 September 2011 at 19:55  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

It's a statement of your religious faith and also an assertion on your part that it must be so.

It's consistent with my religious faith, certainly, but as endless non Christian cultures testify, such a view can be held without that religious faith.

I'm arguing from what is now using a 'like treated alike' type argument for a change

But you can only make that case by evacuating it of the meaning it has traditionally had.

I don't think your denial of the social justice argument is at all convincing

It's interesting how you keep answering that point in such a guarded way.

Why limit it to sisters in your argument?

Sisters are just an example.

Under the current arrangements, a brother and sister or a father and daughter cannot legally get married.

Because I don't think such a relationship is an appropriate context for the begetting of children, or, if the relationship between (say) a father and daughter is analogous to marriage, it would not be appropriate to the upbringing of children.

Why wouldn't you want to extend marriage to include such relationships?

Are you saying that gays and lesbians are inherently promiscuous?

Not inherently, no. Clearly not. I gave an example that shows that is not the case. I was answering an argument for gay marriage that proceeded from the need to stop promiscuity, and was pointing out that we need to know whether gay marriage would stop promiscuity.

The issue here though is information. If I am to make a judgment on homosexuality and promiscuity, then I need to be informed about it. But the gay community keeps such information very close to the chest, and one has to rely medical reports. I know the statistics I have seen on this are alarming, but I don't know if they are true, because, although homosexuals want homosexuality to be treated equally, they don't seem to be terribly open about what homosexuality entails.

19 September 2011 at 19:58  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

"Well, some reports state that the average homosexual has between 20 and 106 partners per year"

So if gay marriages reduced this number significantly then presumably you would be in favour?

19 September 2011 at 20:01  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

DanJ0,

I think Albert has made an anecdotal claim which may be statistically true.

If so, the cause, though, is not likely to be "inherent promiscuity," but the fact that until recently, Gay people have been forced to exist on the margins of society. This is not a mere victimization hypothesis, but a confirmation that we, as humans, tend to make rational decisions. Investing emotionally, socially and financially in a long term relationship while living under stress, disadvantage and danger would not be rational. If the mores of the previous subculture from whch Gay people emerged from not long ago have carried over to the current culture, thanks to a principle anthropologists call "culture lag," it may take a while for the stability stats of Gays to equalize with those of heteros. Not that those are much to be proud of, btw.

19 September 2011 at 20:03  
Blogger Albert said...

Tory boy,

if gay marriages reduced this number significantly then presumably you would be in favour

It would certainly be a good thing - but stopping promiscuity is not the only issue in marriage. In fact, if it takes marriage to stop gays being promiscuous (assuming for the sake of argument that they are) then that would seem to me to undermine the claim for marriage. Self-control is the solution to promiscuity, and it is that self-control that is the pre-requisite for a marriage. So would marriage stop days being promiscuous? If it didn't and relationships continued to be "open" then I think that would be damaging to marriage.

All this is premised on gays being much more promiscuous that heterosexuals. But that is not something I am able to comment on. Perhaps someone who is gay would comment on the levels of promiscuity in the gay community. It doesn't seem that we can have an informed debate without knowing.

19 September 2011 at 20:25  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "But you can only make that case by evacuating it of the meaning it has traditionally had."

It's a social institution, it's reasonable to do that. We don't have to organise our society this way but we have. It endures well I expect because it chimes with our pair-bonding inclinations. Gay people can and do pair-bond.

"It's interesting how you keep answering that point in such a guarded way."

Welcome to your world. ;) I'm on the T.

"Because I don't think such a relationship is an appropriate context for the begetting of children, or, if the relationship between (say) a father and daughter is analogous to marriage, it would not be appropriate to the upbringing of children."

We are happy to allow the marriage of couples who do not intend to have children so why not the small number of related couples who might want to marry? You're chasing your own tail.

"Why wouldn't you want to extend marriage to include such relationships?"

I'm happy with the current rules that prevent the marriage of brother and sister or father and daughter. I don't see that it has relevance to the argument I'm making i.e. like should be treated alike. Are father-daughter marriages and gay marriages alike where unrelated straight marriages are not? I don't think so.

"But the gay community keeps such information very close to the chest, and one has to rely medical reports."

What's the 'gay community'? You mean people who hang around Soho? I'm gay and I'm not part of the gay community. I've never filled in a survey specifically about being gay or about my sex life. That's not because I want to be secretive to protect my not-community.

19 September 2011 at 20:55  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Avi: "If so, the cause, though, is not likely to be "inherent promiscuity," but the fact that until recently, Gay people have been forced to exist on the margins of society."

40 years or so ago we were put in prison for having a sex life. Chemical castration was a possible sentence a little before that. People lost their jobs for being gay and found out. It's only been a little over 10 years since we had an equal age of consent in the UK. This is just a tiny snapshot of the outrage we have suffered. I could get quite angry when I think about it.

For gay people to meet a few decades ago, it was public toilets, areas with reputations, and private clubs. Blackmail was a possibility so anonymity was a common option. Living as a gay couple was very frowned upon. Violence on being found out was likely. It's small wonder a certain 'gay culture' evolved, especially in places like London.

I've seen a massive shift in atttudes in the last 15 years, and a lot of that is the media and internet use. It's very positive I think. Gay teenagers need not live in terror at school. Gay couples can set up home. People can be known to be gay at work and not necessarily worry they will get abused, or fired, or fail to be promoted as a result. It's being normalised and I think, hope I suppose, that social arrangements will fall into line with straight arrangements at some point.

19 September 2011 at 21:14  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

DanJ0 said ... "Really, I think some gay people just want to get married like anyone else."

When you say they'd "just want to get married" what do you mean precisely? Do you mean they want to express public commitment, have an exclusive relationship, have a different tax code, a new title, ... . Seriously what exactly is it that homosexual couples want? What is a marriage?

And the question you resolutely seem to be refusing to answer: if homosexual couples feel justified in being able to demand the right to be "married" [whatever that seems to mean] - then why can't ANY relationship become a marriage relationship?

Marriage - for time immemorial - has been defined by biology, sociology, and (for the most part) theology. Now you say all those things are irrelevant - that only ideology matters.

Social experiments in removing marriage (which in essence is what actually happening : in the same way that declaring everyone 'disabled' makes the notion of being disabled meaningless) have already been tried. They failed dismally and at great social cost.

20 September 2011 at 00:20  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

DanJ0,

I've been around long enough to remember the bad times and what's more, I once lived in an East Bloc country where homosexuality was punishable with a death sentence, assuming the accused could survive jail long enough to face a trial.

However, lest you be comforted by the assumption that the sea change in attitude is permanent, or that it came about due to a mysterious societal apotheosis, a cornucopia of goodwill, which somehow and forever and ever recognized what is right and just, do take the time to trace the history of the Gay movement one day. Note the uncanny similarity to the trail-blazing Jewish pride, women's emancipation, Latino empowerment and Black liberation movements of the 50s, 60s and 70s. And as was the case with all of these movements, the sudden success of the 70s and 80s Gay movement couldn't have occured without the sudden and massive, multi-billion dollar economic impact and international "throw" of self-sufficient, upwardly mobile Gay communities in the US and Canada. You folks in "Yurup" just trudged along and followed in a haze of confusion.

In other words your current good times are a result of a freak event, a distant explosion, a historic singularity which happened more than three decades ago on another continent. Ponder that one.

So, herein lies a dilemma you and a few "disconnected" Gay people I know, ones who prefer to live outside of their community, will soon have to face. With the greater tolerance and acceptance, favourable legislation and institutional normalities like Gay marriage nearly achieved, the once separate Gay community and its economic engine, which made all of this possible in the first place, becomes weakened, and is abandoned by its most successful members to the radicals, the impoverished and the oddballs. The successful types are now welcomed everywhere and in time, the mother community which gave birth to them becomes weak and vulnerable. And I can tell you as a member of a people who've lived through countless cycles such as this one, that any community without a firm base and a strong sense of separation, anyone who trusts in the goodness of mankind, the words of the carpetbagging advocates and the wisdom and the mercy of the lawmakers and the courts, is bound to be disappointed sooner or later.

20 September 2011 at 00:56  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

DanJ0

It really is pointless engaging in endless repetitive discussion with you on this issue.

Just in case you missed my post on an earlier thread my reply is copied below. I'd hate to think you were under any illusions about me.

Denial is a terrible condition. It eats away at one's soul or, in modern parlance, one's subconscience. Research the term and give serious consideration to it's applicability to you. And do try to stop your rather juvenile attacks on me. What's the matter, didn't your Daddy understand you?

For the record, I repeat, I stand by the Roman Catholic Church and it's teachings and authority. I regard it as the one true Church of Christ that has alone stood firm on the great moral challenges of our age and I am a faithful and committed member.


So not a 'troll' with hidden motives adopting a cunning strategy to attack our host or evangeligal Christians. Mind you, I do think they are mistaken as they do me. But that's the nature of this blog.

20 September 2011 at 01:09  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "It really is pointless engaging in endless repetitive discussion with you on this issue."

Off you go then. *waves*

20 September 2011 at 06:44  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Rebel: "And the question you resolutely seem to be refusing to answer: if homosexual couples feel justified in being able to demand the right to be "married" [whatever that seems to mean] - then why can't ANY relationship become a marriage relationship?"

I don't see the relevance of the question when I'm arguing from a 'like treated alike' position. Tell me, why can't a brother and sister marry now? Why can't a man and his horse marry now? Why can't a mother and her son marry now? I expect the same arguments will almost certainly still apply when gay people can legally marry.

You could try for "marriage is defined as between a man and a woman" or "marriage is ordained by your god" or "it's tradition" but I can just blow those out of the water as I think Albert realises full well. You're reduced to dancing around trying to make a poor slippery slope argument apply and trying to make it my problem not yours. Well, no cigar there.

20 September 2011 at 06:58  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Avi: "So, herein lies a dilemma you and a few "disconnected" Gay people I know, ones who prefer to live outside of their community, will soon have to face."

Notwithstanding your other comments, being gay is simply a sexual orientation at the end of the day. It's not necessarily like a religion or culture which creates a distinct and enduring identity. If there is some sense of a political movement then it can disperse when its goals are met as (say) the poll tax movement did in the UK. We're disparate people. Despite my online persona here, I'm many things before I'm gay in real life just like you are many things before you are straight.

20 September 2011 at 07:09  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Rebel: "Social experiments in removing marriage (which in essence is what actually happening : in the same way that declaring everyone 'disabled' makes the notion of being disabled meaningless) have already been tried."

I'm not advocating removing marriage. Quite the opposite. I'm advocating legally extending the existing one to include those with a relevantly-like relationship.

The disability analogy is quite weak in the way you use it. Disability comes in all shapes, sizes, and types and requires a multitude of different accomodations. Homosexuality is not like that. Also, we use the 'social model' these days when dealing with disability issues. That's pretty successful.

The teleological impact of having non-functioning legs is not the inability to get around on your own. We created wheelchairs and put drops in the pavement kerb stones instead. That's what being a reasoning species can entail, we're not bound in the way other species are. We can make accomodations.

20 September 2011 at 07:32  
Blogger len said...

As I have said elsewhere as our Society moves further away from God we edge ever closer to Judgement from God.
As fallen man pushes the boundaries ever further and restraints are cast off the true fallen nature of man emerges.
Man is now without restraint and without shame , and he now 'struts his stuff' as a cockerel on a dunghill, basically sticking up two fingers to God.

Man now with restraint falling off is emerging to tempt and provoke God, and I wonder how long he can let the situation develop?.

20 September 2011 at 07:59  
Blogger bluedog said...

danj0 @ 0732 says 'I'm not advocating removing marriage. Quite the opposite. I'm advocating legally extending the existing one to include those with a relevantly-like relationship.'

Some slightly tortured syntax there. But when does the gay community understand that two poofs and a cocker spaniel are not and never can be the same thing as Mum, Dad and the kids?

20 September 2011 at 08:21  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Perhaps all those you are so sure about God’s guidance as to what does and doesn’t fall within the UK state’s legal definition of marriage should reflect on how if they had followed such guidance in the past they would have also reached the conclusion that marriages between those of different races, religions and even sects within the same religion were not in line with God’s teaching. Or that divorcees would not be allowed to be remarried and that no one could marry without their parent’s position. As I have already said Quakers and Liberal Jews have already managed to get happy with the position that same sex marriages are consistent with God’s teaching and I’m sure that that their theologicians are more than a match for any found in these parts.

Please do not talk as though God’s guidance as to what constitutes marriage is immutable and is not subject to interpretation – when the historic evidence shows that it very clearly isn’t

20 September 2011 at 09:52  
Blogger len said...

TBNGU,

When I was a child........

20 September 2011 at 17:21  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

bluedog: "But when does the gay community understand that two poofs and a cocker spaniel are not and never can be the same thing as Mum, Dad and the kids?"

Just for clarity, is that a polygamous marriage involving the two 'poofs' and the cocker spaniel? I want to know how far we are down the slippery slope in your example. Thanks in advance.

20 September 2011 at 18:22  
Blogger Albert said...

We are happy to allow the marriage of couples who do not intend to have children so why not the small number of related couples who might want to marry? You're chasing your own tail.

This seems to be the nub of your objection to restricting marriage to heterosexuals. But it hardly seems convincing. Except in cases where people are elderly, we cannot know for certain whether they will be fertile or not and who's going to go prying into whether they want kids? Indeed, some couples are fertile at times and not at others. Some couples decide not to have children, but then have children, either by accident or design. You can hardly legislate for this – even for the menopause - and indeed, if you did introduce some kind of doubt relating to fertility, that would be damaging to the stability of the institution of marriage and purposes for which we have it.

You can always reject marriage as ordered to procreation and family because, as we have seen before, you have no commitments to moral theory when it comes to the law, therefore, you can just dismiss any point that does not accord with your view.

But having dismissed moral theory, you are then happy to help yourself to the moral significance of pair bonding – which you say gay couples do. But why should pair bonding be important on your view? If it is because that is how the majority like to live, two questions arise: why does the majority matter? The majority are heterosexual, but you do not regard that as an objection to gay marriage. Secondly, is exclusive pair-bonding the majority behaviour of homosexuals? We would need to know that it is, before you could avail yourself of this reasoning.

20 September 2011 at 18:51  
Blogger Albert said...

Are father-daughter marriages and gay marriages alike

Yes, neither is able to produce children in an appropriate context. You are asking for society to accord you privileges you have no reason to deny to others, but that you still wish to deny to others. That is unjust and discriminatory. I have a rationale for why it should privilege heterosexuals, you have not argued for why it should privilege heterosexual and gay couples but not other couples. The result of this, I think, is that marriage itself becomes irrelevant. In fact, why don’t you just support abolishing it? Either marriage is open to every kind of relationship, or it discriminates against someone. If you are troubled by discrimination, consistency and justice demands you just abolish it.

Avi says:

lest you be comforted by the assumption that the sea change in attitude is permanent

This is surely important for your position Dan. At the moment we are told that higher rates of promiscuity, mental illness etc. among homosexuals are because of the way they are treated by society. But if society normalises homosexuality and then many years later the levels of promiscuity and mental illness continue to be raised, won’t people come to think of homosexuality as a form of mental illness after all? Now if you have not managed to match your legal rights with moral theory, won’t some of those rights be withdrawn by a culture reacting against society as it is now?

Here surely, is the problem: by removing laws from the context of moral theory, you have no moral theory to defend yourself with. Every discussion therefore ends on the negative with you. We cannot show that marriage should be reserved to heterosexuals on the grounds of procreation, but neither can you show that homosexuals are equal (I’m not doubting that, I’m just pointing out that if no moral claim can be supported by moral theory, then all moral claims die – including those that help you).

All this just illustrates a point that regularly is apparent: liberals are socially myopic. You do not see what the consequences of your actions may be. You simply think of the short-term fix, not the harm and consequences that may arise. I don’t expect many homosexuals will want to get married, and as a group, it may be they regret the day they fiddled with this ancient and most useful institution of marriage.

20 September 2011 at 18:51  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJO is that a polygamous marriage involving the two 'poofs' and the cocker spaniel?,

Only if the spaniel is 'scene' the Inspector would think...

20 September 2011 at 19:08  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "This seems to be the nub of your objection to restricting marriage to heterosexuals. But it hardly seems convincing."

No, it's the response to your claim that marriage is about children. Very clearly and demonstrably it is not. Your claim falls flat on its face. Marrige is a social institution and exists for a variety of reasons.

"You can always reject marriage as ordered to procreation and family because, as we have seen before, you have no commitments to moral theory when it comes to the law, therefore, you can just dismiss any point that does not accord with your view."

We do not order our society on the basis of a single, universally-applicable, probably absolute moral theory. This is clearly and demonstrably so despite your personal wishes. You very much desire a designed and ordered world because you are religious and you try to project that onto the reality for everyone else.

"But having dismissed moral theory, you are then happy to help yourself to the moral significance of pair bonding – which you say gay couples do. But why should pair bonding be important on your view?2

I have dismissed the sort of moral theory you wish were in place. You know and I know the moral theory you cherish is not the basis of our political and social decisions.

So, you want to make my comment about pair-bonding something about moral significance now? Pair-bonding appears to be a biological trait for our species. We have an afinity for it, I think. Likewise for other species such as some feathered birds i.e. species which are amoral. I'll dismiss the rest of your paragraph since your speculation there is not relevant.

20 September 2011 at 19:35  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Yes, neither is able to produce children in an appropriate context. You are asking for society to accord you privileges you have no reason to deny to others, but that you still wish to deny to others. That is unjust and discriminatory."

You're indulging in some smoke and mirrors there with your flourish of "an appropriate context". You're hardly going to get that one by without scrutiny. The rest of that quote is mere assertion as I am happy to continue with the existing restrictions on marriage between close relatives or marriage between men and horses for the reasons that currently exist. I don't think gay marriage is alike to those things whereas it is sufficiently alike to straight marriage. Hence, your attempts to restrict gay marriage is unjust and discriminatory.

20 September 2011 at 19:41  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "This is surely important for your position Dan. At the moment we are told that higher rates of promiscuity, mental illness etc. among homosexuals are because of the way they are treated by society."

Are we told that? I assume that it is myself but it may be wishful thinking. This has the flavour of gender studies in social science about it.

If I were to put a sociobiologist's hat on then I might actually be tempted to suggest that men are inclined to promiscuity. Obviously as members of a rational species we don't need to act on an inclination like that but it might be there.

But all of that is just, well, stuff. You're trying for a death of a thousand cuts now I think because you don't have a knockdown argument or anything like it.

"Here surely, is the problem: by removing laws from the context of moral theory, you have no moral theory to defend yourself with."

We go around in circles. Then we go around in circles again. And then we go around in circles. I have told you time and again that I doubt very much that a single, consistent, coherent, universally-applicable, perhaps absolute moral theory exists. You won't, can't, accept that. We have to work with what we have, and we do every day. That's the nature of our local reality, and I daresay our universal reality too.

"Now if you have not managed to match your legal rights with moral theory, won’t some of those rights be withdrawn by a culture reacting against society as it is now?"

*shrug*

We live in a liberal, democratic society. I realise that very well. I don't suppose you are very comfortable with that. There's always a conversion to Islam for you and a theocracy somewhere where a more certain and ordered society awaits.

"I don’t expect many homosexuals will want to get married, and as a group, it may be they regret the day they fiddled with this ancient and most useful institution of marriage."

Am I seeing a hint of an appeal to tradition there? It was inevitable I suppose.

20 September 2011 at 20:04  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0

Relax, Inspector thinks Albert has gone out...

20 September 2011 at 20:21  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

This blog has really got bogged down and this usually means that invective increases as each side finds their arguments are not getting through. However, I would make the point which I think both sides would agree with that this change to marriage represents a large change to society because it represents in an important measure how society at large defines itself and how it defines the dignity of the human person. In the following quotation Elizabeth Anscombe considers the change from the previous pagan society to a Christian one and compares it to the change in the opposite direction today.

There always used to be a colossal strain in ancient times; between heathen morality and Christian morality … Christian life meant a separation from the standards of that world: … But the Catholic Christian badge now again means separation, …. from what the unchristian world in the West approves and professes. Christianity was at odds with the heathen world, not only about fornication, infanticide and idolatry; but also about marriage. Christians were taught that husband and wife had equal rights in one another's bodies; a wife is wronged by her husband's adultery as well as a husband by his wife's. But the quarrel is far greater between Christianity and the present-day heathen, post Christian, morality that has sprung up as a result of contraception. In one word: Christianity taught that men ought to be as chaste as pagans thought honest women ought to be; the contraceptive morality teaches that women need to be as little chaste as pagans thought men need be. Elizabeth Anscombe, Contraception and chastity. I hope English Viking will forgive me for quoting a woman.

I think that Christians who do not want to see the definition of marriage change must consider if perhaps they have been supporters of earlier policies which led up to this such as divorce, abortion (in certain cases) and contraception. Our opponents on this issue make their arguments in many cases logically bearing in mind their original premise that God does not exist. Christians however over the last 90 years however have in many cases followed the spirit of the times and are now reaping what they have sown. The answer must begin with Christians becoming united in once again refusing to accept divorce, abortion and contraception. The division in Christendom is a huge weakness.

20 September 2011 at 20:40  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

The division in Christendom is a huge weakness.

Hear hear, that man without shackles.

Back to the fold now, you protesters. You made your point the Inspector General is sure we’ll all agree...

20 September 2011 at 20:51  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Albert said ...
"At the moment we are told that higher rates of promiscuity, mental illness etc. among homosexuals are because of the way they are treated by society. But if society normalises homosexuality and then many years later the levels of promiscuity and mental illness continue to be raised, won’t people come to think of homosexuality as a form of mental illness after all?

Not necessaryily as a mental illness but maybe the result of a lifestyle that is inherently unstable and damaging.

I know homosexual people don't want to hear this, but God in His Wisdom designed us to live certain ways. The moral order and the Commandments flowing from it, is there for our good not to stop us enjoying ourselves. There is such a thing as 'right' and 'wrong' and all of us have a moral compass called a conscience.

DanJ0 said ...
If I were to put a sociobiologist's hat on then I might actually be tempted to suggest that men are inclined to promiscuity. Obviously as members of a rational species we don't need to act on an inclination like that but it might be there.

It's called consupiscence. We all have an inclination long for the fhings of the flesh and often a desire to do things which are proscribed.

In his original nature is good After the Fall man he became open to temptation and to sin. And sin is cummulative both for individuals and for societies. Put the secular sociological books down and read the bible and some sound theological texts on the nature of evil and on sin. You might just find that the best sociological text ever written is the bible.

20 September 2011 at 21:05  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Inspector General

Now you know Shacklefree was urging a united Christian position on certain key moral issues. In my opinion it would be wonderful if one day Christianity could heal the wounds to the Body of Christ.

One step at a time, one step at a time ...

20 September 2011 at 21:13  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Dodo

Not even the Inspector General believes the Anglican-Rome reconciliation is going to be an easy road..

By the way, he thoroughly enjoyed watching DanJ0 going for your gizzard, and you ferociously pecking back – what sport !!!

20 September 2011 at 21:23  
Blogger David Lindsay said...

The statutory definition of marriage as only ever the union of one man and one woman goes back to the Attlee Government. Before that, it had always been presupposed. But its iron-cladding by means of the Statute Law was the work of the greatest Labour Government, and of the longest-serving Leader in the Labour Party's history. Now, though, from the Prime Minister who wanted to give Peter Tatchell a peerage, comes the proposal for "gay marriage". That proposal would be rejected by Barack Obama, and it was rejected by the voters of California and Florida on the same day as they gave their Electoral College votes to Obama.

Unlike a civil partnership, which therefore ought not to be restricted to unrelated same-sex couples, a marriage has to be consummated. The Supreme Governor of the Church of England and Defender of the Faith (the present title is not the one conferred by the Pope on Henry VIII, but the one conferred by a Protestant Parliament on his son, Edward VI) could not have signed a Bill which, for the first time, actually required, in order to receive some legal benefit or privilege, engagement in sexual relations other than those between one man and one woman in marriage. The Supreme Governor of the Church of England and Defender of the Faith still cannot do so.

Nevertheless, we should seize this opportunity to propose something better. The extension to relatives of the right to contract civil partnerships. The entitlement of each divorcing spouse to one per cent of the other's estate for each year of marriage, up to 50 per cent, and the disentitlement of the petitioning spouse unless fault be proved, thereby restoring the situation whereby, by recognising adultery and desertion as faults in divorce cases, society declared in law its disapproval of them even though they were not in themselves criminal offences.

The entitlement of any marrying couple to register their marriage as bound by the law prior to 1969 as regards grounds and procedures for divorce, and to enable any religious organisation to specify that any marriage which it conducts shall be so bound, requiring it to counsel couples accordingly. And the statutory specification that the Church of England be such a body unless the General Synod specifically resolve the contrary by a two-thirds majority in all three Houses, with something similar for the Methodist and United Reformed Churches, which also exist pursuant to Acts of Parliament, as well as by amendment to the legislation relating to the restoration of the Catholic hierarchy.

That would be a start, anyway. It is astonishing that no major party is opposed to same-sex "marriage", just as it is that no major party gives expression to all sorts of mainstream opinions in the country at large. Ed Miliband is, I suspect, in favour of it. A lot of people are. But by making the above his and his party's conditions for supporting it, then he would both be doing what was right, and, as in so many other ways of siding with Mail and Telegraph readers (even if not writers) against the Government, doing what was electorally opportune. So, Ed Miliband, over to you.

20 September 2011 at 22:58  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Inspector General said ...
"By the way, he thoroughly enjoyed watching DanJ0 going for your gizzard, and you ferociously pecking back – what sport !!!"

You are a bad man! And what with me trying to turn over a new leaf since Mr Cranmer's been on my case. I notice he rebuked you recently for what turned out to be a mistaken comment. He's pretty sharp on Roman Catholics who show any sign of intolerance.

Still, we are only human, except in my case my status as an extinct species allows me some leeway.

The poor lad DanJ0 has his head buried in too many sociology and philosophy books with the odd dip into Darwinism and Dawkinism. It's filled with modern day secular humanist perpectives leaving little room for real thought. I think he shows some potential though and with time he may see the errors of his ways.

I think he's running away from the Truth because of the implcations it will have for his 'chosen' lifestyle. He has a heavy cross to bear but, God willing, he'll pull through.

I learned a great deal from Albert patiently working through the logical reasoning and flaws in his arguments. Commendable and instructive too. A lesson to us all in the way we ought to conduct ourselves.

21 September 2011 at 00:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "It's called consupiscence. We all have an inclination long for the fhings of the flesh and often a desire to do things which are proscribed."

The point I was making is not about concupiscence, it's about a possible gender difference which might be of significance. A peripheral topic.

21 September 2011 at 01:00  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "The poor lad DanJ0 [...]"

Dodo, if you're reduced to that for your contribution to the topic then you've essentially given up the topic ... and your dignity again.

Also, your last paragraph up there deserves a special award for its vomit-inducing sycophancy. I'll laugh in a bit when the queasiness passes.

21 September 2011 at 01:12  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

DanJ0

Modern woman is as "liberated" as her male counterpart these days in matters of immorality. True, there appears to be a genetic predisposition in men towards speading his seed but with modern day contraception and abortion woman are now at liberty to cast off the shackles of their past and be unrestrained.

Good thing? Bad thing? Equal Opportunity? A woman and a man's right to chose?

It remains a predisposition, a temptation, towards sin i.e concupiscence, and has to be resisted.

Modern values, living, thinking and modern science make it so much easier to give into temptation. People persuade themselves it's okay and believe there are no consequences.

My point is that it's not okay and there are consequences for individuals and for society. There's no harm in actively resisting the temptation to sin.

21 September 2011 at 01:25  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

DanJ0

You are a very immature little boy. Albert demonstrates a good deal of patience and reasons with you. Recently you accussed him of stalking you!

Isn't it time you were tucked up in bed?

21 September 2011 at 01:30  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Shacklefree: "The answer must begin with Christians becoming united in once again refusing to accept divorce, abortion and contraception."

I agree. I'd love to see Christians standing up to demand that other Christians and the rest of society must marry rather than co-habit, and shouldn't divorce except perhaps for biblical reasons, and mustn't use contraception. I'd like to see abortion clinics picketed daily by Christians to back up their rhetoric. The more like Stephen Green of Christian Voice the better, I'd say. Target the immoral majority of our country. March on Parliament with placards proclaiming that couples who live together outside of marriage will go to the Christian hell ... once the nature of that is agreed of course. Please, do it.

21 September 2011 at 01:44  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "You are a very immature little boy. Albert demonstrates a good deal of patience and reasons with you. Recently you accussed him of stalking you!"

There the real nature of you is put on public display, just as I have said.

21 September 2011 at 01:47  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

No, it's the response to your
claim that marriage is about children.


That is not the position I have taken. I have said that marriage is ordered towards the begetting and bringing up of children. It flows from biology and from the fact that society benefits from keeping father and mother together. That’s why it is not unjust for married couples to be given special privileges. To put it crudely, they provide a service for us all. For the reasons I have given, and which you have not addressed, I do not see how you could maintain the stability of marriage for that purpose, while hedging it about with conditions for childless heterosexual married couples. You would undermine the purpose in trying to clarify it. So the purpose and end of marriage remains and it excludes, as a matter of justice, all those who do not provide that kind of "service" to society.

We do not order our society on the basis of a single, universally-applicable, probably absolute moral theory.

On what basis then do homosexuals claim to be equal? I have a basis for gay-equality. Do you?

This is clearly and demonstrably so despite your personal wishes. You very much desire a designed and ordered world because you are religious and you try to project that onto the reality for everyone else.

I find it amazing that you think it is possible psychologically to analyse people across such a distance. Don’t you realise, I can just play that one back at you? In any case, I have asked you to explain what you understand by teleology, because it seems to me we don’t mean the same thing.

I have dismissed the sort of moral theory you wish were in place. You know and I know the moral theory you cherish is not the basis of our political and social decisions.

And society is all the poorer for it.

21 September 2011 at 09:53  
Blogger Albert said...

So, you want to make my comment about pair-bonding something about moral significance now? Pair-bonding appears to be a biological trait for our species. We have an afinity for it, I think.

So if biology represents something morally significant, why do you think we have evolved in a way that favours pair-bonding? Nothing to do with procreation and the welfare of offspring?

I'll dismiss the rest of your paragraph since your speculation there is not relevant

Really? It seems the rest of that paragraph reveals the contradiction in your position.

You're indulging in some smoke and mirrors there with your flourish of "an appropriate context". You're hardly going to get that one by without scrutiny

It only looks like smoke and mirrors because you are addressing a straw man. I have said rather often that marriage is ordered to the begetting and bringing up of children. That is to say it is about providing a suitable context for that to occur. Are you saying that incest is an appropriate context for children to be born into? Because if it is not, then with regard to the purposes of marriage, there is reason to exclude both gays and incest. I have a reason for that discrimination, but you don’t appear to have a reason for discriminating against incest since you won’t answer that point.

If I were to put a sociobiologist's hat on then I might actually be tempted to suggest that men are inclined to promiscuity

How does that help you?

I have told you time and again that I doubt very much that a single, consistent, coherent, universally-applicable, perhaps absolute moral theory exists.

So therefore, a future society would not be morally wrong to persecute gays? But notice, I am not basing my argument on a universal moral theory. Marriage is so universal because it is so useful – there’s something pragmatic about supporting heterosexuals, that doesn’t apply to homosexual and other couples.

I don't suppose you are very comfortable with that.

Why on earth (apart from pure prejudice) would you suppose that?

Am I seeing a hint of an appeal to tradition there?

I am appealing to tradition – as you must too. Marriage is a traditional institution. We cannot talk about it, without having an eye on what tradition has taken it to mean.

The funny thing about all this is, that when Gay Marriage and Civil Partnerships were first discussed, a gay friend of mine asked why gays would wish to pattern their relationships on those of heterosexuals. If that is widely held, then it would appear this argument is just, as Carl said, about legitimating gay relationships and de-legitimating the opposition.

21 September 2011 at 09:55  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Can we presume that if the Christians unite, as Shackelfree proposes, and are able to persuade (and not demand as Shacklefee says) the majority of us that we should change our state's definition of marriage to match their own - that they will also reinstate the well founded biblical requirement for the wife to obey the husband.

I would have thought that as a matter of honesty the position on this should be made clear.

21 September 2011 at 10:06  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

tory boys never grow up
"Christians unite ... they will also reinstate the well founded biblical requirement for the wife to obey the husband."

Do you understand St Paul's teachings on matrimony and how he uses it as an analogy for Christ's relationship with His visable Church on earth - His Bride?

If you did you might just begin to have a richer and more balanced perspective. Do a little bit of research and come back with sensible questions.

21 September 2011 at 13:01  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Dodo

If you assume that I'm unfamiliar with Paul's teachings on matrimony you would be totally wrong. It's just that I don't agree with them and I think you would have some difficulty in getting democratic buy in from most of the female population of this country - but more than happy for you to try.

21 September 2011 at 13:31  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "That is not the position I have taken. I have said that marriage is ordered towards the begetting and bringing up of children. It flows from biology and from the fact that society benefits from keeping father and mother together."

I'm seeing a problem there with "flows from". It's rather wishy-washy given what you need from it, don't you think? It also has more than a whiff of the naturalistic fallacy in your particular hands. I'm still not happy with "appropriate context" either as it sounds very grand but obviously demands scrutiny.

Actually, I'd like you to set out what "ordered towards" means. Clearly it's not a necessary criterion to want to or to be able to have children in order to have a marriage approved as I keep on pointing out to you, to no avail.

"So the purpose and end of marriage remains and it excludes, as a matter of justice, all those who do not provide that kind of "service" to society."

I think not. I listed all sorts of things about marriage at the start. You're over-egging that aspect considerably to try to make your argument. That's the problem you face really, you can't really do otherwise and maintain your desired opposition. And if we introduce the possibility of one woman in a lesbian couple choosing to have a child by non-penetrative means then you really have to jump through hoops.

"On what basis then do homosexuals claim to be equal? I have a basis for gay-equality. Do you?"

Yes of course. Not one based on that sort of hypothetical construction though, one much more tuned to our local reality without the problematic assumption of that other one.

"I find it amazing that you think it is possible psychologically to analyse people across such a distance."

If I thought it was a remarkable technique then I'd create a stage show a bit like Paul McKenna but sadly it just involves reading, a bit of inference in normal forum style, and spotting things like the telling sentence at that the very end of your comment.

Feel free to simply disagree like the rest if us do if you feel it's not as accurate or as flattering as you like. Heck, I spent about 4 months when I first came here bouncing back the silly 'cultural marxist' label from the extreme right-wingers.

"In any case, I have asked you to explain what you understand by teleology, because it seems to me we don’t mean the same thing."

No thanks. If you think there's a misunderstanding then simply point out the relevant bits. I'm afraid I know the form now and I've no intention of opening yet another seemingly interminable exchange of messages on that sort of topic.

There's no need either. If anyone is interested in the form of teleogical arguments in the now unfashionable philosophical style then there's plenty of online resources. If anyone is interested in this Catholic, Edward-Feser-reading, Aquinas-oriented, Aristotelian-inspired poster's version then there's plenty there on that too.

21 September 2011 at 17:25  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "So if biology represents something morally significant, why do you think we have evolved in a way that favours pair-bonding? Nothing to do with procreation and the welfare of offspring?"

It has lots to do with those sorts of things. You seem very keen to introduce this moral significance thing. Obviously I can see why you might want to but I've already pushed that away once.

"Really? It seems the rest of that paragraph reveals the contradiction in your position."

It seems to you.

"Because if it is not, then with regard to the purposes of marriage, there is reason to exclude both gays and incest. I have a reason for that discrimination, but you don’t appear to have a reason for discriminating against incest since you won’t answer that point."

I have answered. I said I'm happy with the existing reasons for excluding closely-related people from legal marriage. And yet again, I don't consider gay marriage an marriage between closely-related people to be similar, unlike gay marriage and straight marriage which does ... providing one doesn't try to over-egg the 'ordered towards' thing. It's not my problem to have to justify a separation between gay and close-relation marriage; you use it you make it.

"How does that help you?"

It doesn't explicitly. However, it is interesting and could perhaps have ramifications. For example, if a male inclination to promiscuity exists and that is considered a social problem then binding gay men together in the social construct of marriage might help even more given there are two men in the relationship instead of the one in straight marriages. Double bang for your buck! Alternatively, if women are less inclined to be promiscuous than men and potential promiscuity within a relationship is considered a barrier to gay marriage then a lesbian one seems to doublely avoid that strand of argument. Etc.

"Marriage is so universal because it is so useful – there’s something pragmatic about supporting heterosexuals, that doesn’t apply to homosexual and other couples."

So, if I can find a pragmatic reason to support gay marriage too, perhaps from that list I wrote at the start, then we're a goer on legalising it afterall?

"I am appealing to tradition – as you must too. Marriage is a traditional institution. We cannot talk about it, without having an eye on what tradition has taken it to mean."

I'm not appealing to tradition, not in the way you were, albeit obliquely, back there. 100 years or so ago, women didn't have the vote. That was traditional. Now they have. Hurrah! So much for an appeal to tradition, it doesn't get you very far I'm afraid.

"The funny thing about all this is, that when Gay Marriage and Civil Partnerships were first discussed, a gay friend of mine asked why gays would wish to pattern their relationships on those of heterosexuals."

You can use personal anecdotes to explain how you are informed about things but, really, you can't use your 'gay friend' to move everyone from the very, very specific to the general and ride in on its coat-tails either. No cigar there.

21 September 2011 at 17:48  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Finally, we're moving to the bottom of the page and that's my time limit for this. We're just going around in circles anyway and I'm finding it as tedious as ever doing that so there's probably one more exchange possible.

21 September 2011 at 17:54  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

tory boys never grow up

Discussing the relationship between married men and women would open up a whole new topic.

You say you understand St Paul, just disagree with him. At the time he wrote his was a radical new insight into married relationships and has served us well for 2000 years. His treatise was inspired by the Holy Spirit and therefore was Truth.

We could debate this endlessly but maybe another time when the the subject under discussion is more relevant. Afterall there are no such thing as homosexual "wives" and "husbands".

21 September 2011 at 18:07  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

Okay, so you want to stop - fine - my patience is being tested by this too. The reason for this is that I am finding a lot of hand waving from you but not engagement with the key issue.

I am making three claims:
1. Babies come from heterosexual relationships
2. It is in society's interests for children to best cared for by their fathers and mothers.

To achieve this, society has a hallowed institution called marriage, which, until recently, society treated with a special reverence and gives it privileges because of the benefits we all receive from it.

You point out that there are some who avail themselves of marriage who do not produce children or do not intend to, and therefore, you infer that gay couples (but not other couples - you say you are "happy" them to lose out, as if your happiness is somehow morally important) should also be allowed to be married.

I have argued, that this argument is flawed because we could not hedge the law about with conditions relating to fertility and childlessness without damaging marriage itself. I have said that therefore, it serves the purposes of marriage to include such persons, simply because we couldn't uproot them from marriage without harming the institution. I really cannot see how you have addressed this point.

To see the force of the issue, perhaps we should turn it on its head: Let us suppose that tomorrow pair-bonding suddenly stopped in human beings. What would society loose from heterosexuals? Family stability. Children would be more rootless, they would be poorer and harder to teach because of the lack of a father. We know that absentee fathers are a real problem.

What would society loose if homosexuals stopped pair-bonding? I cannot see that homosexual couples as couples provide anything remotely equivalent to society as what heterosexuals do as couples. Marriage has a privileged status – what do gay couples contribute that entitles them to demand the rights and status of marriage, but which could not also apply to other kinds of couples? You seem to be asking for something for nothing and discriminating against others at the same time – doubly unjust.

21 September 2011 at 22:05  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Albert

Why not say

"Marriage has a privileged status – what do couples, where one or more of the couple are infertile or beyond child bearing age, contribute that entitles them to demand the rights and status of marriage, but which could not also apply to other kinds of couples? You seem to be asking for something for nothing and discriminating against others at the same time – doubly unjust."

Some of us believe that marriage has something to offer beyond child bearing - stable relationships, companionship and yes love can all make a contribution to society as well. I am all for families with children being supported - but this is not mutually exclusive of supporting a wider role for marriage than has historically been the case.

21 September 2011 at 22:43  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "Okay, so you want to stop - fine - my patience is being tested by this too. The reason for this is that I am finding a lot of hand waving from you but not engagement with the key issue."

I'm not allowed to disagree that it is the key issue. I must engage with you on all your points and accept the assumptions your position is based on or I'm hand-waving. Got it. Meanwhile, you hand-wave about it to try to force the debate down the very narrow lines you need. Unless it goes down those lines then the debate is interminable. Well, that's not going to happen. You need to find someone more compliant in your debates I think.

"I am making three claims:"

Well, claim 1 obviously fails immediately. For claim 2 we could organise things differently if we so chose but is essentially okay. Also, what is in the best interest does not preclude other options by necessity. In there is the main assumption you make which you refuse to acknowledge, no doubt because you are actually just sugar-coating your religious views. Claim 3 contains religious irrelevance and is more about your goals than anything else.

Your problem is that you must idealise the social institution of marriage to achieve your aims. In the real world, the social institution is not the idealised thing you need it to be.

Your next paragraph about those losing out is a straw man. I know you must try to get morals into this somewhere but I'm finding your attempts a little jarring it has to be said.

You're begging the question in the next on by talking about serving the purpose of marriage even though that is actually the key issue here.

A problem all along I think is that to achieve what you want you must deny the actuality but you switch to pragmatism when it suits you.

The last paragraph is a bit of a muddle because I think we both know and accept why society does not allow legal marriage for closely-related couples. You obfuscate that using undefined but grand-sounding terms and I think it is irrelevant to gay marriage unless you can show the relevance. Unfortunately you haven't so far other than to idealise it all and try to make marriage hallowed in some way.

Marriage is actually a contractual arrangement in the civil sense and the State recognises that family units are at the foundation and are the building blocks of society as we have currently constructed it. Families are very likely to contain children but need not necessarily do so without undermining the value of the marriage as I keep pointing out.

Undoubtedly reproduction fits quite nicely into that structure but there's much more to it then that. I know it's a gestalt shift for you but if you could only bring yourself to see that then I'm sure you would recognise the social justice and the pragmatism in gay marriage.

22 September 2011 at 07:54  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

TBNGU: "I am all for families with children being supported - but this is not mutually exclusive of supporting a wider role for marriage than has historically been the case."

Exactly.

Historically, families have been of the extended form, and extended families have existed in the wider context of hamlets, villages, and small towns. There's another argument which one might expect to fall out of Albert's position on the apparent primacy of what is in the best interest of society regarding children: perhaps the State should discourage families dispersing around the country, or even across cities. Afterall, extended families confer lots of advantages, not least in child care. Why insist on marriage being 'hallowed' and with special privileges but not (say) village or community life?

22 September 2011 at 08:05  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Danj0 said 22 September 2011 08:05
“Historically, families have been of the extended form, and extended families have existed in the wider context of hamlets, villages, and small towns. There's another argument which one might expect to fall out of Albert's position on the apparent primacy of what is in the best interest of society regarding children: perhaps the State should discourage families dispersing around the country, or even across cities. After all, extended families confer lots of advantages, not least in child care. Why insist on marriage being 'hallowed' and with special privileges but not (say) village or community life? “

Danj0 you're a closet commie. Let's have communes with heterosexual, homosexuals, transsexuals, swingers, cross dressers the whole lot. And why not throw in a load of hard drugs to keep them all oblivious. How to ruin a healthy society and bring the country to it's knees just become a swivel eyed liberal/ Get the barriers and harnesses taken off sexuality by allowing anything and anyone to marry, decriminalising, legalising dangerous drugs, and you've already seen the results of your liberal left policies which caused riots by taking the reigns off education and parenting by abolishing corporeal punishment.

You liberals are ripping the heart out of our society and in particular the honest decent middle classes. God help us.


Sorry just had to say something Danj0 you're infuriating

22 September 2011 at 13:21  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

I'm not allowed to disagree that it is the key issue

I mean the key issue in my argument. If you just ignore and trade on the assumption that it isn't there, we can't get very far.

Well, claim 1 obviously fails immediately

Of all the things I never expected you to doubt, I never thought you would doubt:

1. Babies come from heterosexual relationships

But clearly, if you don't think that babies come from such relationships, you will never find an argument persuasive that moves from that assumption.

In there is the main assumption you make which you refuse to acknowledge, no doubt because you are actually just sugar-coating your religious views

An assumption you just admitted is "essentially okay". Are you a Catholic now?

Your problem is that you must idealise the social institution of marriage to achieve your aims

Go on...

After that, it is quite difficult to know which parts of my comment you are critiquing - because, you just don't address the issue specifically. It's only when you name the paragraph that I know what you're referring to:

The last paragraph is a bit of a muddle because I think we both know and accept why society does not allow legal marriage for closely-related couples

Why does it not allow for closely related couples?

Families are very likely to contain children but need not necessarily do so without undermining the value of the marriage as I keep pointing out.

But again, you're not arguing against me there. I am not saying that gay marriages undermine heterosexual marriage directly, I am asking why gay couples should be given preferential treatment over other kinds of relationship. I can explain that with heterosexuals - their tendency to produce children - but why homosexuals?

22 September 2011 at 13:21  
Blogger Albert said...

Tory boy

Some of us believe that marriage has something to offer beyond child bearing

As a married man, obviously I accept that. My question is why should society support some relationships?

stable relationships, companionship and yes love can all make a contribution to society as well

I get all that from marriage, yes. But I also get it from my Catholic parish. Do you think the state should support my Catholic parish just because it gives me those things?

22 September 2011 at 13:24  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

But the State does support your Catholic parish - since I'm sure that it gives it relief from taxes as a charity - which I'm quite happy with as churches do make a contribution to our society.

22 September 2011 at 13:35  
Blogger Albert said...

I don't think that the State supports Catholic parishes, it just doesn't tax them as if they are businesses because they are not businesses.

In some businesses, you can find stable relationships, companionship and love, but they are still taxed as businesses. I think the tax man would be surprised that such a business should be exempt from tax on those grounds.

22 September 2011 at 13:49  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

I suspect most married couples would be more than happy to get the same tax reliefs as the Catholic church - I'm not sure that married couples get much more support from society nowadays other than recognition of their status.

Churches also get relief from rates - the priests get invite to all sorts of commmunity events etc. etc.

22 September 2011 at 13:59  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Albert

The state doesn't tax churches becuase they have charitable status - to get charitable status you have to have a charitable purpose. By definition a charitable purpose is one of supporting society - go and look it up at the Charities Commission website.

Plenty of individuals and entities which are not businesses are subject to tax on their income. Ask the many clubs etc. which have to pay tax on their investment income etc.

22 September 2011 at 14:08  
Blogger Albert said...

Tory boy,

I'm not sure that married couples get much more support from society nowadays other than recognition of their status

Indeed not, and it is a scandal that marriage doesn't get higher recognition. Society is paying the price. I gather fathers sometimes live separately from their children, because it is cheaper and people sometimes don't get married for the same reason. Utter stupidity on the part of the state. This may have to be rethought if (as seems plausible) the breakdown of the family, lack of male role models etc. contributed to the summer riots.

I can't really comment on the tax issues as it is well beyond my knowledge. But I am quite sure that the Catholic Church does not receive tax-breaks because in it you find "stable relationships, companionship and love" - the point where you started.

If the Church gets tax-breaks because of its charitable purpose, that rather proves my point - to get some kind of benefit from the state, you need to be putting something in, and, as I have shown, that something has to be more than just "stable relationships, companionship and love" which appeared to be your reason for why marriage should be treated differently. Therefore, there must be another reason for marriage's special status (such as it is) and you cannot proceed to gay marriage on those grounds.

22 September 2011 at 14:18  
Blogger tory boys never grow up said...

Albert

Given the way that charitable objectives are interpreted - I think you will find that most organisations which encourage "stable relationships, companionship and love" would be able to claim charitable status with only the minimum of creativity (as opposed to individual/married couples - who have to look for their support from society in other forms). Some might even argue that it is the organisations which get the better deal.

22 September 2011 at 16:08  
Blogger Albert said...

Tory boy,

What, even when they are businesses? In any case, what of two sisters living together?

Presumably though the definition must be wider than that, or abortion clinics would could never be charities (I suspect St Paul whose prose has most affected our view of charity would wonder at the sickness of a society that considers abortion clinics to be charities, but that's another matter).

22 September 2011 at 16:35  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "Get the barriers and harnesses taken off sexuality by allowing anything and anyone to marry, decriminalising, legalising dangerous drugs, and you've already seen the results of your liberal left policies which caused riots by taking the reigns off education and parenting by abolishing corporeal punishment."

Blimey. I've obviously been busy there. Who knew? If any other loonies fancy using me as a generic fall guy to be responsible for all of society's ills so they can vent in a bizarre fashion then I can fit people in from 4pm until 6pm tomorrow. I'm aim to please.

22 September 2011 at 18:18  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "But clearly, if you don't think that babies come from such relationships, you will never find an argument persuasive that moves from that assumption."

*whispers* Turkey basters, IVF, even surrogate mothers. You don't need to get jiggy jiggy to produce a baby. It's a sperm and ovum, matey. Get them together and put the result in a womb and, hey presto, a baby! I can give you more details if you like.

"An assumption you just admitted is "essentially okay". Are you a Catholic now?"

Catholic? I'd rather chew my own foot off than get snared in all that. As for the assumption, I was talking about this "ordered towards" thing that has far too much importance in your argument for it to be convincing. I'm happy to say that marriage is a good setup in which to bring up children. Of course I am. As ever, you make too much of these things. Over-firm them to push everything to the conclusion you want.

"Why does it not allow for closely related couples?"

And loop. Why should gay marriage and marriage of closely-related couples be relevantly similar? Other than in your idealised, appeal-to-tradition, by-definition view of what marriage is. Straight and gay marriage is relevantly similar for all the reasons I listed at the start and more.

"But again, you're not arguing against me there. I am not saying that gay marriages undermine heterosexual marriage directly, I am asking why gay couples should be given preferential treatment over other kinds of relationship."

I keep answering. Straight and gay marriages are relevantly similar for all the reasons I listed, which matches the reality we see around us. Some straight people marry and have kids (planned or not), some straight people marry and are too old to have kids when they marry, some straight people marry and choose not to ever have kids. Some straight people choose to adopt kids. In all these cases, the underlying relationship and the outcome is the same for gay marriage.

A marriage is still a wholly valid marriage whether or not kids are involved, and whether or not the kid is raised in the best practice environment of a loving, caring, nurturing Mum and Dad family unit. And really, a Mum and Mum family unit with all those ideal attributes will almost certainly be a better environment than lots of crap Mum and Dad family units in reality where the parents don't really give a shit about the kids.

Let's face it, if you squint your eyes a teeny bit then it's basically two people falling in love in most cases, making a commitment to each other, setting up a home, and doing all the usual financial, emotional, and practical support for each other that couples do. That's the essence of it. It's a family unit, probably centred around a house and home, being one of the social building blocks of our society. It's pretty simple really. No need for all that god-stuff wrapped up in idealised, ordered-towards stuff to hide it.

That could apply to closely-related couples but we all recognise that there are multiple social issues there so society doesn't encourage it. There might even be the moral issues in there too (gasp) because of the potential for abuse or lack of essential consent in a parent-child relationship. We're into roles, duties, obligations, etc which is independent of gayness.

"I can explain that with heterosexuals - their tendency to produce children - but why homosexuals?"

Again, you're begging the question. You can explain that by saying that marriage is only for a man and a woman if you like too. I'd like to say we can loop around and around forever with your using the words in various orders to make the same assertion over and over hoping that you'll wear me down but, well, we can't. It wasn't convincing at the first iteration and it damn sure isn't after all the rest.

22 September 2011 at 18:58  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

*whispers* Turkey basters, IVF, even surrogate mothers. You don't need to get jiggy jiggy to produce a baby. It's a sperm and ovum, matey. Get them together and put the result in a womb and, hey presto, a baby! I can give you more details if you like.

Well, I think that just goes to show that continuing this discussion is entirely fruitless. The whole debate has been an examination of whether you were begging the question when you said originally (18 September 2011 16:26) that this was simply about

like to be treated alike

The debate has therefore ranged around whether you have failed adequately to distinguish heterosexual couples and homosexual couples.

I would have to say that I can hardly see how you can be expected to do that, when you are clearly unable to distinguish the obviously true claim I made

1. Babies come from heterosexual relationships

from the false claim:

1' Babies only come from heterosexual relationships

After all, much of this discussion has also been about married heterosexual childless couples. The discussion is again about distinguishing between married heterosexual childless couples as the exception that proves the rule, or married heterosexual childless couples being an exception from which you prove another rule.

Given how much this discussion has been about making proper distinctions, your confusion over 1. & 1' (together with the way in which you have presented it) makes me think that this discussion, has been, as Kant said of the Ontological Argument "so much labour and effort lost."

23 September 2011 at 14:24  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "The whole debate has been an examination of whether you were begging the question when you said originally (18 September 2011 16:26) that this was simply about [...]"

It's actually been about your core assumption regarding the nature of marriage, Albert. You actually know that, I'm sure. You then beg the question over and over because you clearly can't support it. It has the essence of a doctrinal matter with you and that's that.

"I would have to say that I can hardly see how you can be expected to do that, when you are clearly unable to distinguish the obviously true claim I made"

Oh Albert :O You're actually resorting to that? I'm actually a little dismayed as we will obviously never agree on almost everything but I honestly thought better of you. I read that over and over before I commented and it was clear what you meant. You're using what used to be called the weasel escape there.

"Given how much this discussion has been about making proper distinctions, your confusion over 1. & 1' (together with the way in which you have presented it) makes me think that this discussion, has been, as Kant said of the Ontological Argument "so much labour and effort lost.""

Albert, as you know very well I have considered the seemly interminable exchanges of messages on Catholic topics, or their sugar-coated versions, pointless for a long while now. On the positive side, that means both of us finally recognise it rather than just me and I just can comment on them without needing to waste a week each time trawling through leading questions. Hurrah! Small mercies etc.

23 September 2011 at 17:06  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

Now this is a little more interesting:

It's actually been about your core assumption regarding the nature of marriage...You're using what used to be called the weasel escape there

In the second part you accuse me of a weasel escape, when your error concerned the basis of my reason for thinking marriage arises from the heterosexual propensity to produce children (that is, the first part of your comment). What you are taking to be a weasel escape directly touches the very issue I have been on about - the very origins of marriage - or haven't you noticed?

I read that over and over before I commented and it was clear what you meant

Well, there are two possibilities here: either
(a) You have confused 1. & 1'.
or
(b) you really think I was unaware of surrogacy, IVF, or even a lesbian sleeping with a man so she and her lesbian partner can have a baby?

Do you really think (b) is likely?

Seriously?

Either error is pretty grim to be honest. Far from attempting a weasal escape, I was expressing exasperation with you, because you seemed confused over some fundamental aspects of logic and the meaning of central propositions. Now that you claim you really thought I didn't know about surrogacy IVF etc. - a claim I find truly extraordinary - my exasperation is even greater. What prejudice you hold against religious people!

your core assumption regarding the nature of marriage

I would have thought that the least you have to concede is that we both have core assumptions here. Mine: marriage, procreation, etc. yours: that concerning marriage gays and heterosexuals are alike. If you don't hold some kind of doctrine of marriage you can hardly argue for gay marriage - or is your idea after all, to evacuate it of all content? You really cannot have it both ways.

I have argued tirelessly to defend my premise and I have responded to your counter-examples, which you have ignored. You have simply been circular in trying to defend your premise (insofar as you have defended it). But given how you seem stuck on either (a) or (b) this whole debate seems to have been a total waste of time.

But from 2015 you will have one thing in your favour: the force of law.

23 September 2011 at 17:41  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Danj0 too many of your desired Liberal policies constitutes lunacy and the crumbling of a solid society. Call me mad if it makes you feel better for wanting a society based on men and women in a marriage with or without children.

If gays want children then there will have to be three in the “marriage” how else would the fertilised donor egg be able to grow unless they had a Frankenstein one grown in the lab then we may as well bypass marriage and male female bonding and allow anyone to pop down to the lab for a child just like you go to the supermarket.
Just face it there is no such thing as “gay marriage” Accept it and be happy.

23 September 2011 at 17:43  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "Call me mad if it makes you feel better for wanting a society based on men and women in a marriage with or without children."

I called you a loony for foisting all that stuff onto me as a convenient stand-in for your liberal caricature. You're not on the Daily Mail site now, luv.

"Just face it there is no such thing as “gay marriage” Accept it and be happy."

No.

In the other direction, I reckon you'll have no choice but to accept gay marriage soon. The thought of you huffing and puffing as you walk past gay newlyweds as you make your way to your BNP meeting or to buy your Daily Mail will make me happy. Some of your gay friends or your gay family or your gay tutor or you gay hairdresser might even invite you. That'll be lovely, I'm sure. You can sit at the back looking like you've bitten into a lemon thinking it was an orange.

23 September 2011 at 19:07  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Good god Albert, give it up man. It's not as though you can't keep your pristine, still in the box, idealised, Catholic view of marriage if you like, it doesn't actually matter if it doesn't match the reality we all share. Just pretend your own marriage is like that and it means what you would like it to mean. You don't need to convince me.

23 September 2011 at 19:15  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

Just pretend your own marriage is like that and it means what you would like it to mean. You don't need to convince me.

Do you still not understand this? We are not debating whether or not gay sex should be legal - we both agree on that. We are debating whether gays have the right to impose on the rest of us their belief that gay relationships can be equal to heterosexual marriage, and deserve the privileges and status of marriage, while denying that status and privilege to other relationships.

If you want to impose that, you must convince me, not the other way around.

23 September 2011 at 20:13  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

23 September 2011 at 20:31  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "If you want to impose that, you must convince me, not the other way around."

Is this some sort of delusion of grandeur thing going on here? I must convince you? Listen up matey, I recognise that you can't actually handle not winning an argument but you're just some rather, erm, overly tenacious religious bloke on the internet to me. A bit scary because of it, yes, but I don't really care a hoot whether you are convinced or not.

23 September 2011 at 20:42  
Blogger Albert said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

23 September 2011 at 21:08  
Blogger Albert said...

Is this some sort of delusion of grandeur thing going on here? I must convince you?

I was borrowing the expression from you, you wally!

It's a question of justice Dan, and I am just a representative of the people who disagree with gay marriage. In a free society, you do not impose opinions on others, except in the rare occasions when reason and the common good require it. That's what I mean by convincing me, otherwise, you just impose your opinion on millions of others by force. Allow that and you have no rational defence against extremist Muslims or (perish the thought) Catholics!

So much for liberalism.

23 September 2011 at 21:14  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "In a free society, you do not impose opinions on others, except in the rare occasions when reason and the common good require it. That's what I mean by convincing me, otherwise, you just impose your opinion on millions of others by force."

I'm pretty sure the main opposition to this is religious and no amount of reasoned argument will convince there. Why would anyone else really care about gay marriage? I've made my argument here to my satisfaction based on the ethical foundation of like treated alike and the social institution of marriage that people generally understand today. The one made in Parliament will be along roughly similar lines I think. To me it seems very obvious and a natural continuation of the shift in public opinion about gay rights. I daresay it's inevitable. The contrary opinions about gay people have been imposed by force on us for long enough. It's nice to see justice being served in all areas at last, though no doubt it will go down like a lead balloon with Ratzinger and Co and end up in one of his speeches.

23 September 2011 at 21:33  
Blogger Albert said...

Dan,

the main opposition to this is religious and no amount of reasoned argument will convince there

You really think I haven't given you reasoned argument?

I think perhaps you need a little more grasp of the history of secular "reason". May I recommend Earthly Powers by Michael Burleigh. It begins with the French Revolution and the ensuing terror.

23 September 2011 at 22:39  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert: "You really think I haven't given you reasoned argument?"

It wasn't that great was it? Starting with a main premise like that, you were always going to struggle. Fair play for trying though I suppose.

Thanks, but no thanks for your book recommendation. Is that called 'barbing by book'? I'm wondering now what your next attempt at mastery will be. It's quite fascinating to watch, but a little disturbing too.

23 September 2011 at 23:03  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

“In the other direction, I reckon you'll have no choice but to accept gay marriage soon. The thought of you huffing and puffing as you walk past gay newlyweds as you make your way to your BNP meeting or to buy your Daily Mail will make me happy. Some of your gay friends or your gay family or your gay tutor or you gay hairdresser might even invite you. That'll be lovely, I'm sure. You can sit at the back looking like you've bitten into a lemon thinking it was an orange.”



No Danj0 “gay marriage”isn't necessary and will not enhance society at all but will just be a blow against the Church and what it stands for namely the normality of males and females.
I do not attend BNP meetings as I've mentioned I'm not a member and it would not be a good idea as I do not want a brick through the window.

My gay tutor has had a civil union and is not interested in “marriage” neither is Martin my best friends' brother who has also had a civil ceremony. My cousin in Chester is experimenting with Lesbianism and I have declined a visit this year due her tactile forward advances last time we met up. Barry the gay hairdresser is one of the high risk gays whose partners run into the hundreds a year. I have now found another hairdresser, so I doubt whether I will be sitting at the back anywhere with a face like a bulldog sucking on a lemon!

24 September 2011 at 01:49  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie1797: "No Danj0 “gay marriage”isn't necessary and will not enhance society at all but will just be a blow against the Church and what it stands for namely the normality of males and females."

It's in society's best interest when social justice is served. Gay marriage isn't a privilege for gay people when marriage is available for straight people, society has a duty to make it available to gay people because treating like alike is one of the ethical foundations of our society. I think it will enhance society in other ways too but that is a bonus.

To use the like treated alike ethical foundation one must show that the two things are alike in the aspects that matter. That's not to say that they are the same in all aspects, just the relevant ones. Looking at what the social institution of marriage means today to people and the purpose it serves, it's the same and therefore we can demand our rights. That's not imposing something on people, it's overturning an injustice; a noble purpose.

Of course, the opposition try to simply define it out, or appeal to some notion of tradition although that's not as obvious as one might think when one looks closely, or apply some religious thinking, directly or indirectly, about it being ordained by god or ordered-towards something or being part of a cosmic plan to help mankind flourish and serve its special religious purpose. You can see from the special pleading here that those arguments come to nothing.

You say it will be a blow to the church. Well, so what? No doubt equal rights for black people was a terrible blow to racists and their organisations in America a few decades ago. No doubt votes for women was a blow to social conservatives in the UK a hundred or so years ago trying to sustain a systematic gender and class difference. The church, the Catholic one in particular, is essentially a political organisation serving its own purposes. I don't really give a stuff about it, let them cry into their communion wine.

24 September 2011 at 06:28  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Actually, rereading your comment about the church, you mean it is intended to be a deliberate blow or attack against the church I suppose. I'll cover that as well.

Undoubtedly gay rights activists like Peter Tatchell and gay rights groups like Stonewall are pushing for gay marriage but this is actually a Government thing. New Labour, and Harriet Harman in particular, pursued an 'equality' agenda during their time in office albeit as a left-wing theme. The LibDems have always stood for gay rights and freedom in a more liberal way. When Cameron was in opposition he deliberately tried to rebrand the Tories as a more modern party mirroring what Blair did to Labour. He's dusted it off now I suppose to deflect from the austerity fallout and its Don't Care About People image.

I'm sure the gay rights thing for the Tories is mostly about throwing off the stench of Section 28 and elbowing the Spitting Image puppet of Norman Tebbitt aside. That is, we're being used to show the Tories are now modern, loveable, and One Nation. But hey, who's complaining if it gets us recogition of our rights. I'm all up for making hay when the sun shines as I simply want sexual orientation to become largely irrelevant and unremarkable to wider society as it should be.

So, if you do think the purpose is to attack the church then I think you're way off the mark. For sure, gay people are in a Cold War of sorts with the church but I daresay gay people basically just want their rights. That's the primary reason. If the legal recognition of gay marriage comes into being and it gives the middle finger to the church then that's just a welcome bonus for people like me. Clearly the Catholic Church is running scared of these various secular themes anyway given Ratzinger's speeches which is a measure of the success of the arguments and the politics.

24 September 2011 at 10:24  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Danj0 6:28
But the gays have got the same legal rights What they are doing is harassment and attacking not just the Church but any organisation or government that gets in the way of furthering their causes. Tatchell and Stonewall are a bitter, fanatical and selfish lot who are going beyond reasonableness and sense. Look on their websites to see this.

Plenty of other items that are far more important would increase Cameron and the Tories' popularity tenfold rather than appeasing a handful of obsessive gays and lesbians. Cameron made a rod for his own back there by allowing himself and the Tories to be led astray by these people and groups with extreme demands, it was a mistake probably down to naiveté.

Allowing “gay marriage” will be opening the doors for others with extreme demands claiming it it their right. As with multi multiculturalism multisexualism will also be a miserable failure.

Danj0
“I simply want sexual orientation to become largely irrelevant and unremarkable to wider society as it should be.”

It will never be that, you're kidding yourself. Human nature will not be crushed and homogenised into sameness. Nature produces differences for a reason. The gays should celebrate their differences by having a Gay Union instead of a marriage. And in their own special places, after all they have their own pubs and clubs. We each need our own space to be but are still part of a society of human beings that are different. Forcing us all to be the same is not healthy. Live and let live.

24 September 2011 at 15:33  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Marie, Here is a link indicating that the homosexual lobby is very good at marketing and so far have been very successful at changing the culture of society:

http://www.faith.org.uk/Publications/Magazines/Mar09/Mar09LearningFromHomosexualActivism.html

24 September 2011 at 15:52  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "But the gays have got the same legal rights What they are doing is harassment and attacking not just the Church but any organisation or government that gets in the way of furthering their causes."

Marie, it's the government who is going ahead with this. You do realise that, right?

"Cameron made a rod for his own back there by allowing himself and the Tories to be led astray by these people and groups with extreme demands, it was a mistake probably down to naiveté."

Oh I don't think so. You need to read the government statements I think. Besides, it's hardly an extreme demand, it's just for legal recognition of gay marriage to match straight marriage as a matter of social justice. What the government will probably do is just reclassify civil partnerships as civil marriages.

"Allowing “gay marriage” will be opening the doors for others with extreme demands claiming it it their right."

Like marrying one's horse? Well, I'm sure those can be addressed on their own particular merits. The essential similarity between gay and straight marriage is what the demand for legal recognition is based on, at least for me. That looks pretty clear cut. Naught to do with horses.

"It will never be that, you're kidding yourself. Human nature will not be crushed and homogenised into sameness."

Luckily, that's not what I'm saying. Years ago, it was frowned upon to live together as a couple and now most people don't think anything of it when they meet people who co-habit. Except some god-botherers and the like who make that sort of stuff their business, I expect. Nothing crushed, no sameness. Just people living their own lives free of the obsessions of others about their personal lives.

"The gays should celebrate their differences by having a Gay Union instead of a marriage. And in their own special places, after all they have their own pubs and clubs."

A gay marriage is a gay union. I'm gay and I don't have special places or go to special gay pubs and clubs as a rule. Why would I? It's just sexual orientation. If I want to kiss another man in front of someone like you then I will and you can foam and froth all you like. Afterall, it's your problem not mine. Straight people can kiss in public so I can too. I used to think Gay Pride was something that could be left behind but I see that In Your Face potentially still has a value.

"We each need our own space to be but are still part of a society of human beings that are different. Forcing us all to be the same is not healthy. Live and let live."

Well, I have my own space: my home. In the workplace, in the street, in public places, I have, and ought to have, the same sorts of rights and freedoms as everyone else. If you don't like it then tough shit. We're here to stay now, out in the open. The injustice has gone on far, far too long. I hope that clears things up for you.

24 September 2011 at 16:41  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Shacklefree: "Marie, Here is a link indicating that the homosexual lobby is very good at marketing and so far have been very successful at changing the culture of society: [link]"

I said we're in a sort of Cold war. The best thing about that article is that it shows that the church and church people know that they are on the back foot and are clearly very, very worried.

24 September 2011 at 16:56  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Danjo, I think we can agree on that one.

24 September 2011 at 19:39  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Tks for the link I thought it was an enlightening and revealing article. The only one who is desperate is Dan! Desperate to impose your unproductive and seedy homosexual lifestyle onto a society here that already is sympathetic and tolerant towards it but does not want the gay way to take over every corner.

“Diversity Champions Stonewall
Take the Diversity Champions programme for example, through which scheme organisations sign up to Stonewall for an annual charge of £2000 for private organisations and £1500 for public or charitable organisations. The organization points out, for instance that "Inclusive work environments encourage loyalty, teamwork and maximise personal contributions, which are key in top performing organisations", and that "74% of gay and 42% of straight consumers are less likely to buy products from organisations that hold negative views of lesbian and gay people." The scheme is backed by a very slick video on their website.”

How do they know that 74% and 42 % of consumers are less likely to buy products from organisations that hold negative views of G & L people?
Tell me this is not subtle blackmail and extortion.

“ At the time of writing the website celebrates that the Army has become the 400th Diversity Champion. That's a guaranteed income from these groups of at least £600,000 a year! “

Installing a diversity Officer is “Effectively a parasitic cell is established within the organisation which can then work on ensuring that staff are sensitised to 'gay' needs and encouraged to be supportive of the idea that homosexual relationships are good.”

“Another aim and expectation of Diversity Champions is to raise the issue of sexual orientation in the context of recruitment. Having senior staff who are openly homosexual helps attain a higher rating. It is a package which ultimately is geared at normalising the special and preferential treatment of homosexuals. In turn as senior positions are disproportionately held by homosexuals the ethos is reinforced.”

Each year Stonewall produces a Workplace Equality Index to score organisations on how favourably they perform in relation to the criteria they have created. They tell us that this "index is a powerful tool used by Britain's 1.7 million gay employees and 150,000 gay university students to decide where to take their talent and skills."[1] A look at the list is informative: among those scoring favourably are various police forces, local council authorities, the Royal Navy, the Prison service, numerous banks, the London Authority, the Home Office, and other government bodies. For 2009 Lloyds TSB, Hampshire Constabulary and Brighton & Hove City Council have won the coveted top three spots.

To score well you need to do things like sponsor a 'LGB Community Event' (that is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual); give special support to homosexual staff; recruit staff through 'gay media' (many of the companies are presently advertising well paid posts on the Stonewall website). The most recent report on the Equality Index noted that 61 % of participating organisations had an "openly lesbian, gay or bisexual person on their board". All of the organisations give diversity training, which is supportive of homosexual relationships. 99% of the organisations involved have a "diversity team".

Organisations will reinforce their approval by giving benefits to same-sex partners wherever benefits to spouses are given e.g. health insurance. They will be expected also to organise special meetings or networks for "LGBT staff". Diversity training will be compulsory to make sure that all employees learn of the values promoted by Stonewall.

Organisations involved, it seems, clamber to satisfy Stonewall's demands to get a place on the top 100 and then Stonewall is waiting with further advice to help these organisations make their way further up the celebrated list.

24 September 2011 at 20:21  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Part 2
"A glance through their website also reveals how busy the organisation is, providing such services as: a Seminar programme; a Stonewall Workplace Conference; a Recruitment Guide; Stonewall Leadership programme; Workplace Guides; Awareness raising; Training Package and so on."


Tell me this is not deliberate social manipulation to the detriment, harassment and discrimination against heterosexuals as well as the Church and Christian teachings. “Gay marriage” has to be disallowed that it is being used as a tool to further breakdown the heterosexual core society, to cause confusion and impinge on the freedom of religion for those who wish to follow Christ's teachings and the Bible.

24 September 2011 at 20:22  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "The only one who is desperate is Dan! Desperate to impose your unproductive and seedy homosexual lifestyle onto a society here that already is sympathetic and tolerant towards it but does not want the gay way to take over every corner."

Lol. There's naught seedy about my homosexual lifestyle. You're the bird who meets blokes off the 'Net, even when you have all the 'normal' pubs and clubs to go to, and then bemoan the quality of your men. I just have a pretty normal lifestyle like everyone else, except the one difference obviously, when all is said and done.

"Organisations involved, it seems, clamber to satisfy Stonewall's demands to get a place on the top 100 and then Stonewall is waiting with further advice to help these organisations make their way further up the celebrated list."

That sounds like they're more than sympathetic and tolerant already. Who needs to impose anything at this rate? I work for a Blue Chip company and it has the usual diversity policy: gender, orientation, disability etc is irrelevant unless it affects your job and discrimination won't be tolerated. You can't argue with that surely? It also makes it clear it won't tolerate it when people who talk about their same sex partners at work are treated with a lack of dignity. That is, it recognises that all this sort of stuff is normal. I dunno what that Stonewall thing is all about to be honest, I certainly haven't ever come across it in my career.

24 September 2011 at 20:59  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Marie: "“Gay marriage” has to be disallowed that it is being used as a tool to further breakdown the heterosexual core society, to cause confusion and impinge on the freedom of religion for those who wish to follow Christ's teachings and the Bible."

Ha. I very much doubt it will do any of those things except perhaps the confusion of the blue rinsers in the CofE. Here's a handy pie chart which predicts the effect of gay marriage. Hope that helps.

24 September 2011 at 21:01  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Danj0
And here's a Jacob Appel video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WeKLUyaxdxE to demonstrate the slippery slope is in action. It is doing the rounds from David Skinner who is keen to promote the Legalisation of prostitution, polygamy bestiality and incest. There is attached an e-petition to sign, I note he uses the recent Christian cases of The Bulls and Sir Adrian Fulford homosexual High Court Judge and judge on the United Nations International Criminal claims that, “Pink Law will not be an anomaly but rather the shape of things to come." to state his points.

This is nonsense and should be deleted as it doesn't belong in a society that is trying to uphold values of decency and respect.

29 September 2011 at 15:18  

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