Thursday, May 10, 2012

On the Wrong Side of Gay Marriage

President Obama has finally decided to end the charade he's been conducting on his position on gay marriage. He claimed to have been against it in 2008, and presumably more recently, but having consulted with Michelle and his daughters, as well as his neighbors, whoever the neighbors of the White House may be, he has decided that after a long process of evolution his position has mutated to the point where today he's all for it.

Rarely does one see a scientific theory confirmed by a president, but Mr. Obama has just demonstrated that Darwin was right after all. Politicians, like species, are in a struggle for survival and such a struggle rewards those most agile in adapting to changing environments. Thus Mr. Obama's evolution makes him more fit, he apparently believes, to survive in the current political climate.

Even so, Mr. Obama is simply wrong on this issue. Most people who favor gay marriage do so because they think it to be the compassionate thing to do, but this is a case of favoring the wrong thing for a good reason. Contrary to conventional opinion, permitting gays to marry is not a matter that affects no one but the blissful couple. It will have, probably sooner rather than later, a deeply corrosive effect on our social fabric by emptying marriage of any real meaning.

The traditional view is that marriage is a union of one man and one woman. Mr. Obama is telling us that he no longer believes that the gender of the couple entering the union should matter, but if the gender shouldn't matter why should the number of people in the union matter? Once we open up marriage to any combination of genders what logical ground will there be for limiting marriage to just two people?

Mr. Obama would have us step out onto a slippery slope which would lead almost inevitably to a nadir at which we'd have no rational basis for excluding any marital arrangement into which any combination of people wish to enter.

Indeed, what basis would there be, and I'm serious when I ask this, to limiting marriage to an assemblage of humans? What logical objection could anyone have, once we've crossed the gender threshold, to someone who wished to marry his or her pets? If people deeply love their pets why should they not be permitted to formalize their relationship? We can't just say that that's gross. We have to have logical reasons if we are to deny people this right and once we've discarded traditional and religious strictures there simply aren't any.

The point is that once the word "marriage" means any congeries of people (or animals) - and anyone who thinks it won't is either naive or hasn't thought this through - it has ceased to mean anything at all. Marriage will cease to exist as an institution in this country except, perhaps, among those backward religious folk who lack the wit to embrace the moral progress that our enlightened elites are foisting upon us.