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Feb 21, 2013

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Roch

I guess that makes you a "gay activist" in Hammer's book. What is it with these old curmudgeons who cannot bear to let people make the most intimate decisions for themselves?

Roch

And, I'd have said as much at Hammer's column but, in keeping with the editor's pathological authoritarianism, comments are heavily censored there and my last few never saw the light of day.

polifrog

The arguments put forward for homosexual "marriage" are invariably made relative to marriage.

But is there a moral case for homosexual "marriage" absent marriage?

I have yet to see one.

Ed's mom

Frog, could you explain your comment about (I guess) the meaning of marriage? I have been married twice, widowed twice, and I thought I understood the concept. Concept big, each marriage unique. You seem to suggest that homosexual cohabitation or civil union might be okay but the word marriage won't do. I used to feel that way, too, but when challenged as to why I could not come up with an answer. In most of history and geography marriage has been a matter of economics, often still is, but I am a romantic and think that people who love each other should be able to get married, if that is what they want.

Lex

Bold talk for a one-eyed fat man fake-Christian bad novelist.

Janet Wright

Can we get a "like" button for Ed's Mom's comment?

Spag

Actually that doesn't make Card a "homophobe", it makes him a person who is opposed to acts that "flagrantly violate society's regulation of sexual behavior", among which he includes homosexual acts.

To me that's too much worrying about what other people do, but that's no excuse for anthemic overkill either.

designation

"Laws against homosexual behavior should remain on the books" = Homophobe

Bill Bush

I got the impression from Card's word salad quoted in the post that he thinks the laws against homosexuality should be preserved to be used against those whose conduct he dislikes, to some degree, at some time, sometimes, whenever he thinks so. Speaking of society's rules seems to me just a way to appear to speak for everyone while advancing his own opinions.

polifrog

@Ed's Mom

I don't mean to enter into a conversation over the meaning of marriage. As you suggest, I've already gone there, but I suppose I will touch on it again.

I'm asking this: if there is a moral argument for marriage that, all the disparate religions, and all the disparate forms of governments, indeed the entire world have accepted for a millenia, what is the moral argument for gay marriage? And can a moral argument be made for gay marriage that is not first predicated on the moral arguments for traditional marriage?

Let's assume for a moment we lived in a world that had no concept of marriage and into that world a group of homosexuals proposed the concept of marriage. What would the moral argument for it be?

There could be no scientific argument for homosexual marriage, and in particular, no evolutionary argument for homosexual marriage.

Yet, marriage as we know it is based on exactly those arguments. Of course, the term evolution was not used, but it may as well have been used when society recognized that marriage not only increased the likelihood of offspring, but increased the viability of offspring.

It seems to me that in being unable to make the moral argument for homosexual marriage the next best thing has been to assume the moral argument of traditional marriage by redefining the term marriage to include homosexual "marriage".

Furthermore, not only is traditional marriage being forced to house the concept homosexual marriage, traditional marriage is being redefined downward to, as you put it:

people who love each other should be able to get married, if that is what they want

Really? Prepubescents frequently love one another, as do prepubescents and adults. And historically marriages between such individuals were arranged for "economic reasons".

So what is the moral argument for homosexual marriage?

So far all I've heard is 'they have it, why can't we?'. But not only does that not rise to a moral argument for homosexual marriage but it ignores the science...

Ed Cone

We're actually discussing the legal definition of marriage, which has changed over the centuries, and is not uniform now across cultures and religions. But the moral argument for gay marriage is simple: It's wrong to deny legal protections to loving adults who desire such protections.

Back to the subject at hand, OSC's problems with homosexuals and homosexuality clearly predate the marriage question NC, and elsewhere.

A more interesting question is, what impact, if any, should his views have on his career as a comic-book writer?

polifrog

Actually, Ed, traditional marriage is as much a consistent across cultures as music. I defy you to find anything more consistent than traditional marriage across cultures.

It's wrong to deny legal protections to loving adults who desire such protections.

That argument can only be made predicated on the existing morality of traditional marriage.

What is the moral argument for homosexual marriage absent traditional marriage?

Is there one?

Spag

"It's wrong to deny legal protections to loving adults who desire such protections."

Is it EVER wrong? If so, who decides?

If Card feels the same way about heterosexual sodomy is he a heterophobe? It seems that he has a puritanical view of sexuality as opposed to a homophobic view.

Roch

"what is the moral argument for gay marriage? " -- frog

"We hold these truths to be self evident."

Ed Cone

Frog, your argument about the sameness of traditional marriage across cultures, religions, and time is simply incorrect on the facts.

Polygamy, for example, is still practiced in some places. The legal status of women has changed dramatically in this country and elsewhere since the founding of our republic. The idea of romantic love as the basis of marriage (as opposed to a property transaction, and/or something arranged by elders) is fairly recent and still not universal. Etc.

In this context, the strong trend toward allowing gay marriage seems anything but unusual.

Sam, "homophobia" may be an unsatisfactory term in some ways, but it's common English usage, and Card seems to have it pretty bad, and (to the point of the post) has had it for some time now.

sal leone

I do not know why people are still fighting gay marriage rights. The issue is not a City, County or State issue but a Federal one. The haters need to let go and let people just live their lives. I know plenty of gay people and have no problem talking or hanging out with them, they dont attack me or force their lifestyle on me or others. There are planty of gay people I know that shocked me when they came out, gays pay taxes and work, so if they want rights that others have, then let them.
I find it funny that people think gays will ruin the concept of marriage, news flash divorce rates are high, man and women now only live together,women have kids out of wedlock, gays had no part in that.

justcorbly

What's Card so afraid of?

He seems to want to police bedrooms looking for Flagrant Violators.

The Sex Police. Must be a band with that name.

Frank

Play it, Norwood.

polifrog
"It's wrong to deny legal protections to loving adults who desire such protections."

Is it EVER wrong? If so, who decides?

We are all free to choose marriage, or not to choose marriage.

It is only the individual who chooses not to marry that is denied marriage.

Spag

Ed, suppose card said that he opposed all sodomy except homosexual sodomy. Would he still be a homophobe? Or is he a homophobe simply because he opposes the act and some homosexuals might engage in it? If Card only opposes homosexual sodomy, then you would have a point. I don't think that conclusion can be reached from the passage you cite without more information.

Perhaps you need to include more of his history first.

polifrog

Ed:

Polygamy, for example, is still practiced in some places.

Foolish. But note that polygamy falls under this rather expansive definition of marriage:

I am a romantic and think that people who love each other should be able to get married, if that is what they want.
and:
The legal status of women has changed dramatically in this country and elsewhere since the founding of our republic. The idea of romantic love as the basis of marriage (as opposed to a property transaction, and/or something arranged by elders) is fairly recent and still not universal. Etc.
How does any of that not fall under traditional marriage? In that context homosexual marriage is not only quite unusual, but an aberration.

Why? Because the moral case for homosexual marriage has not been made any more than the moral case for pedophilia. Contrast that with the fact that the moral case for traditional marriage was independently made across a multitude of cultures and was adopted independently in each. Homosexual marriage stands apart from that evolution, thus the need to shoehorn it into traditional marriage.

None of you seem able to make the moral case for homosexual marriage without bouncing it off of the rich history of traditional marriage. Including you, Roch.

If you believe in homosexual marriage, why do you believe it is right? Make the moral case.

If none of you can, then either you have not questioned the culture busting regarding marriage that America is suffering under or there is no moral case to be made for it.

Spag

Frog, that's not exactly my point although I think that you are headed towards the correct Constitutional analysis.

Rather my point is the same as it was during the A1 debate. If we start from Ed's proposition that "It's wrong to deny legal protections to loving adults who desire such protections" then on what basis can we deny any loving adults those legal protections? The premise suggests that the only requirement is "loving adults who desire such protections". That could include polygamists, near relatives, etc.

Hence, my fundamental problem with this issue. Once you open that door you are left with the subjective decision to decide where to draw the next line- and that undermines the very argument Ed and others advance in the first place. The next group of people who want to get married need only rely on the same rationale that they too are "loving adults who desire such protections". Further, that would lead to an actual Equal Protection argument because any denial of marriage would necessarily be based on subjective criteria rather than Constitutional ones. The very people who argue against morality as a basis to deny same-sex marriage would be forced to accept morality as a basis to deny that right to other groups. This is nothing more than an admission that morality is a factor to be considered, the only difference being that they set their own sense of morality as the standard even as they lambasted the line of morality established by others. Otherwise, to be consistent they would have to support any marriage between any loving adults who want legal protections.

That is just the mechanics of the argument, but to me the result is the same. There is no way to draw any line without bringing personal values into play, so you either draw no lines at all or accept that the current Constitutionally guaranteed line is the only one that should be drawn.

Many dismiss this as the "slippery slope" but never offer a counter argument to show that it is incorrect. After all this time, I'm still waiting. But maybe I'll come off the fence some day as soon as I become comfortable with ANY loving adults being extended those legal protections or decide that government shouldn't be involved in marriage at all. I suspect my present discomfort is shared by most people, including those who clearly support same-sex marriage. The logical consequences have yet to be satisfactorily resolved.

sal leone

Poli has a point on moral marriage, the good books saids that marriage is between one man and one women, I think we can all agree with that. We need not look at gay marriage as moral but a legal right, we have a seperation of church and state.

I say lets enforce all the other laws we have on the books in regards to man and women. We have laws on living together, we have laws on checking into motels as man and wife, we have laws on oral sex, and laws on adultery, if we are going to pick on gays for their sex life then we need to also start with straight couples.

prell

"we have laws on checking into motels as man and wife"

Sure about that?

Orson Scott Card is the author of Hamlet's Father. He's a lot more than a homophobe. He's one f'ed up dude.

prell

Never mind, Sal. I misread the last part of your post.

polifrog

Sal:

We need not look at gay marriage as moral but a legal right, we have a seperation of church and state.

I am not arguing from a religious perspective (I never do), but from a moral perspective.

And I believe laws should have a moral content.

Spag

"I am not arguing from a religious perspective (I never do), but from a moral perspective."

I'm not arguing from either perspective, but rather a logical one. Moral perspectives can change over time which is the essence of the problem, but logic is constant.

polifrog

It is not hard to rationalize immorality.

HealthCare insurance too expensive? It's only rational to force people who don't need it to buy it so as to lower rates for the rest.

Too many people in your poverty stricken country? It's only rational to starve them as it is the inexpensive approach.

Too many people getting shot in gun-free zones? It's only rational to disarm more.

Would you argue for a rational immoral law?

sal leone

I can say this, the whole gay marriage issue will leave one side happy and the other not. The U.S Supreme Court needs to address the issue since we are passed state rights.

I do not know where it is going but it will be the case of the century. The Moral Vs Equal Protection fight.

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