This weekend’s “Values Voter Summit” was chock full of the sort of irrational nonsense you would expect from a conference that included the likes of Ann Coulter and Gary Bauer. Agape Press reports on speeches by Presidential hopefuls Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney about gay marriage. How about the breathtaking historical ignorance of this statement from Huckabee:
The governor also admitted he is “not real fond” when people try to tell him that he is just against same-sex marriage. “I tell people I’m actually just for keeping marriage in the only manner for which it’s ever been known in any culture, in any civilization throughout all of history.”
Incredible. History is replete with cultures and civilizations that practiced all kinds of marriage, from polygamy to arranged marriages to purely economic marriages between powerful familes, all of which are entirely contrary to the modern conception of marriage. It’s one thing to be against gay marriage, it’s quite another to invent a fictional world history upon which to base one’s argument. He also had this line:
And in a statement that drew applause, he added: “Dear friends, until Moses comes down with two stone tablets from Brokeback Mountain saying we’ve changed the rules, let’s keep it like it is.”
Okay, that’s almost clever. But of course, there is no bush, burning or otherwise, on Brokeback Mountain.
Mitt Romney was up next and the tirade of illogic continued:
But the governor had critical words for the highest court in his state. “The court focused on adult rights — they said if heterosexual couples can marry, then to have equal rights homosexuals have to also be able to marry,” he said. That court’s mistake, Romney continued, was “they should have focused on the rights of children — because marriage is primarily about the development and nurturing of children.”
He makes a good point, it just cuts strongly against his position. What about the rights of the hundreds of thousands of children with gay parents? Allowing their parents to have the benefits and protections of marriage obviously contributes to the security and stability of that home and that family unit. This is undeniably true, but the reason it’s not accepted by those who oppose gay marriage is because this argument is essentially a lie. They know that allowing gay marriage isn’t going to change anything for the vast majority of children in straight families, so this argument is a red herring. They just oppose anything ever being done to help gay people because they think gay people should be punished for being gay – and to hell with the children that are damaged by such punitive policies, whose lives are more insecure because their parents can’t have the simple protections the rest of us take for granted.