An argument against same-sex marriage…

Given last week’s Supreme Court oral arguments, I thought it important to post some views on same sex marriage.  The following may be a point of view you are unfamiliar with, but which is quite widely followed.  It comes from Erick Erickson, a well-known conservative blogger who publishes redstate.com.  I have edited his post for the sake of brevity, and you are welcome to respond (in a civil manner, please…).

‘Gay Marriage’ and Religious Freedom Are Not Compatible

By: Erick Erickson (Diary)  |  March 26th, 2013 at 06:30 AM  |  267

The kids these days on the right are full of a great libertarian notion that “hey, let’s just get the government out of marriage.”

“Rock on,” say other libertarians.

They then all smugly self-congratulate themselves, pat themselves on the back, and move on to other issues.

What they ignore is that the left will never take marriage out of the hands of the government. The left cannot. But it goes beyond that. The left cannot take marriage out of government because for so long it has been government through which marriages were legitimized to the public and the left must also use government to silence those, particularly the religious, who refuse to play along…

The left has done an admirable job in secular society making the case that gay marriage merely allows a class of people to be happy and have what everyone else has.

The front on which the gay rights movement has failed is the religious and, in particular in the United States, the Christian front.

From Matthew 19:4-6:

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’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’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

The Christian Left would prefer to view Matthew 19 as a passage on divorce, which is discussed. But they willfully ignore Christ’s definition of what a marriage is — one man and one woman united to become one.

As much as many would ignore, obfuscate, or try to confuse the beginning of Matthew 19, Christ makes it very clear. The Creator made a male and a female and the two become one. That is marriage in Christianity, despite what a bunch of progressive Christians who have no use for the Bible would have the world believe…

As long as there are still Christians who actually follow Christ and uphold his word, a vast amount of people around the world — never mind Islam — will never ever see gay marriage as anything other than a legal encroachment of God’s intent…

Already we have seen florists, bakers, and photographers suffer because they have refused to go along with the cultural shift toward gay marriage. There will be more.

Once the world decides that real marriage is something other than natural or Godly, those who would point it out must be silenced and, if not, punished. The state must be used to do this. Consequently, the libertarian pipe dream of getting government out of marriage can never ever be possible.

Within a year or two we will see Christian schools attacked for refusing to admit students whose parents are gay. We will see churches suffer the loss of their tax exempt status for refusing to hold gay weddings. We will see private businesses shut down because they refuse to treat as legitimate that which perverts God’s own established plan. In some places this is already happening…

Now many of you have read through this and you are shaking your head in denial. “No way this is possible,” you say. But then just a decade ago no one seriously considered gay marriage as possible. And we are already seeing signs we’re headed in this direction. It’s coming. Get ready.

Libertarians will have to decide which they value more — the ability of a single digit percentage of Americans to get married or the first amendment. The two are not compatible.

12 responses to “An argument against same-sex marriage…”

  1. Naiyah1 says :

    I think that Erickson’s arguments is flawed in many ways, however, what I find to be most disturbing is his notion that allowing same-sex couples to marry will somehow lead to the government’s infringement on our first amendment rights. He says that libertarians must choose either “the ability of a single digit percentage of Americans to get married or the first amendment.” Firstly, I think he completely exaggerates the possible effects of allowing same sex marriage. The future conditions he describes would most likely never be proposed and definitely never passed in Congress. Secondly, to insinuate that the rights of a “single digit percentage of Americans” is not important is to say that minorities are not important. The constitution clearly protects minority rights as well as the First Amendment; one should not ever have to win over the other when they are meant to be cohabitual.

  2. Emily1 says :

    I know that everyone is titled to their own opinion. Though I do not agree with Erikson’s views on gay marriage, by any means, he has the right to them. But.. I agree with Naiyah. This argument is flawed and by no means the truth. I understand that some people do not believe in gay marriage, but in the final paragraph Erikson states, “Libertarians will have to decide which they value more — the ability of a single digit percentage of Americans to get married or the first amendment. The two are not compatible.” Believing in the right of gay marriage by no means decreasing the power of the first amendment. Their idea of “real marriage” may differ from Erikson’s, but it doesn’t mean they don’t value the power of the First Amendment or that this couldn’t be protected under the First Amendment.

  3. Jonas1 says :

    This is an incredibly flawed argument. The question before the Court involves allowing same-sex marriage civilly. Churches can still do what they want. There are even some churches that already allow same-sex marriage, a fact the author doesn’t seem to be aware of. Churches are already allowed to discriminate, by not marrying divorcees for example. This wouldn’t change if same-sex marriage becomes legal. Also, that fact that he simply writes off the civil rights of millions of Americans is disturbing. I don’t think he would like being dismissed as insignificant if Christians were a “single digit percentage” of the population. He’s just another bigot hiding behind his bible.

  4. roryblock1 says :

    By allowing same sex marriage, the government will in no way be infringing on the first amendment! Same sex marriage may be outlawed in some religions. That doesn’t mean the government can’t say it’s okay! And by the government allowing it they won’t be infringing upon the establishment of religion. There’s precedent that sort of relates–the whole thing with evolution. OBVIOUSLY christians dont believe that either. But the government still ruled that it’s okay to teach evolution! And that wasnt infringing upon the establishment of religion. churches can do what they want, but making rules in the church that they expect to apply to the nation under the establishment clause? nuh-uh. that is one flawed argument Erikson.

  5. govrobin1 says :

    I don’t follow his point bridging same-sex marriage, religion and its “inherent” contradiction within the government. The establishment clause states “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”. By the fact that a government run process legitimizes marriage along with providing additional benefits to married couples, he is correct in stating that the left will never take marriage out of the hands of the government. They won’t. What I don’t follow however, is how it would be necessary to take marriage out of the hands of the government in order to legitimize same-sex marriage. Furthermore, since marriage is controlled by the government, in order for this to be constitutional and not infringe on ones first amendment rights, the meaning and use of marriage must have adopted a secular purpose over time. If it was entirely christian in nature, it would be an example of congress making a law respecting the establishment of religion. All in all, I encourage people speaking up and voicing their opinions on both sides of the argument, but I think that the “religion” argument isn’t constitutionally valid.

  6. Carolyn4 says :

    Erickson ends his article with a forewarning, “within a year or two we will see Christian schools attacked for refusing to admit students whose parents are gay… we will see private businesses shut down because they refuse to treat as legitimate that which perverts God’s own established plan.” This is an interesting idea. It is almost one of the reverse-racism effect. Those who discriminate, shall be discriminated against. I do see his point, and I do believe it could happen. People these days are discriminated against for refusing women and people of color (both civil rights movements that happened not long ago). We are in the midst of a gay rights movement, and thus I don’t think it’s unlikely that his predictions will come true.

  7. katiepetrino4 says :

    Erickson’s arguments are absolutely ridiculous and incomprehensible. The idea that marriage and religion are inextricably bound is simply false. Marriage is a right that affords many other rights to couples. Do couples who only get married in courthouses, not in churches, have fewer rights than those who perform a religious ceremony? No, of course not. Erickson’s interpretation of the Bible may conclude that marriage is limited to a man and a woman, but I can’t find any evidence of that definition in the Constitution. If we are to only follow the Bible’s interpretation of the marriage, then, by extension of his argument, infertile and old people should be allowed to marry either. Churches have the freedom to not allow divorcees to have ceremonies, but they can not have the power to disallow an entire group of people from marrying. This absolute bigotry is inexcusable.

  8. megweck1 says :

    I would just like to point out that (and no, I’m not christian) not all christians didn’t believe in evolution, and not all christians don’t believe in same-sex marriage. And I agree with what Carolyn said, but what Erickson is doing is essentially defending churches for their discrimination. I think the main point here is that the institution of marriage is not entirely “sacred” anymore. To some people, yes, of course it is, and I would not want to take away that meaning for them. But what Erickson is doing is saying that a certain class of people that interpret a religious doctrine a certain way should have the dominant voice on an issue that doesn’t affect them in any way, shape, or form. Fundamentally, I believe he is saying that all people are NOT created equal, which is pretty much just un-American.

  9. Connor1 says :

    What I took from this passage, is that it reinstated my belief that the government has become too controlling in the sanctity of marriage. Society should not have the right to limit peoples freedoms based off of what their partnership situation is. I see marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman, but that doesn’t mean same sex couples shouldn’t be allowed to be together. The government shouldn’t be allowed to have a say in who you love and what love is. Like Meg said, times have changed and people do not follow the bible and religion as closely as they used to, and even though there are still people that do, society cannot make its rules based off of that.

  10. nicoleb7 says :

    I understand that everyone is entitled to their own opinion about things like gay marriage but if you are going to have a strong opinion about this you need to have a valid coherent argument, and Erickson does not. His argument is flawed in many aspects. The line “Libertarians will have to decide which they value more — the ability of a single digit percentage of Americans to get married or the first amendment. The two are not compatible” really does not have any place in this argument. People’s first amendment will not be taken away if gay marriage is allowed. I also don’t think any of these predictions are going to come true. Maybe if we keep going in the direction we are going in now we will not have to worry about “Christian schools being attacked for not admitting children with gay parents” because they might allow this in 50 years time, we don’t know.

  11. emmar4 says :

    This is obviously a very opinionated piece in which Erickson dramatizes the effect of a simple notion: allowing two people who love each other to make their relationship legal. He criticizes the left (religious and not) and libertarians for being stubborn about their opinions, but he is exemplifying that exact behavior in this blog.
    One of the most frustrating points he makes is his exaggerated scenario of what will happen as gay marriage is accepted: “Within a year or two we will see Christian schools attacked for refusing to admit students whose parents are gay. We will see churches suffer the loss of their tax exempt status for refusing to hold gay weddings. We will see private businesses shut down because they refuse to treat as legitimate that which perverts God’s own established plan.” If this situation is the way the country is leaning, then so be it; it’s called change. I would definitely respect Erickson’s opinion more if the tone of this piece wasn’t so hostile and presumptive.

  12. Nick4 says :

    In one sense, I can understand what Erickson is saying. Marriage was initially a religious institution, so some who are religious might see this as a breach of their faith. With that being said, marriage has become a federal issue, where one can no longer simply claim that it’s against whichever religion they practice, and therefore it must remain between a man and a woman. Yes, marriage is a religious institution, but it has developed into something much more complicated than just that. What I don’t understand is why some people think letting gay couples marry will affect their lives. For me, it’s simple: if you don’t support gay marriage, don’t get gay married. In no way will two gay people getting married affect someone else’s life.

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