Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Pam Spaulding has this great screed by Matt Barber of Concerned Women for America. You’ve just gotta laugh at rhetoric like this:

If the 1913 law is repealed and homosexual activists have success with like-minded judges, then we can expect the “gay marriage” levy to break, flooding the countryside with Hurricane Katrina-like destruction to the marriage and family foundation upon which our society rests.

Gee Matt, will you marriage be destroyed? No? Will anyone else you know have their marriage and family destroyed? No, again? Then drop all this idiocy about marriage and family being destroy when no actual marriages or families will be affected in any way at all (other than the families of gay people, of course, who will have the same legal protections that everyone else has already).

Comments

  1. #1 Robert
    June 26, 2007

    The only destruction that comes is when two people start a family but are denied the protections every other family takes for granted.

    Good Job Matt, if anyone is responsible for destroying families its you and your ilk.

  2. #2 John Wilkins
    June 26, 2007

    I think he’s worried that he’ll get blown about.

  3. #3 IanR
    June 26, 2007

    You’ve got to see this from the perspective of the anti-gay marriage campaigners. If gay marriage is legal, they will feel even more unhappy about their own marriages. If someone says “gay marriage is a threat to marriage” what they are usually saying is “gay marriage is a threat to my marriage”.

  4. #4 Brandon
    June 26, 2007

    Now, this sort of rhetoric bothers me. Is Matt Barber a nut? Of course he is, he’s proved that time and time again. But what about the millions upon millions of Americans who share his sentiments? Are they all nuts too? Matt Barber and most religious righters have proven themselves to be bigots, but the average conservative American just likes to keep things simple and has not had a shred of education on what homosexuality is all about. These little pithy statements like, “Will gay marriage destroy your marriage?” may be true, and may make us feel good, but they don’t really accomplish a whole lot.

    We will never win the legislative battle because for most Congressmen, endorsing gay rights is political suicide. So we won’t see any progress until we win the hearts and minds of the people. And we need to convince them, nicely, that gays are just normal people like us who want to live out their lives the same way we do. We’ve already started doing that. There are sitcoms now with episodes discussing gay rights. That’s good, we need to see more of that. Anything that gets Joe American to say to himself, “Hey, them gay folks all right!” will be a lot more productive than winning a million arguments through logic and reason

  5. #5 MJ Memphis
    June 26, 2007

    “So we won’t see any progress until we win the hearts and minds of the people.”

    You know, if we had tried this tack with interracial marriage, my marriage would probably still be illegal in much of the South.

  6. #6 Ed Brayton
    June 26, 2007

    Brandon wrote:

    Now, this sort of rhetoric bothers me. Is Matt Barber a nut? Of course he is, he’s proved that time and time again. But what about the millions upon millions of Americans who share his sentiments? Are they all nuts too? Matt Barber and most religious righters have proven themselves to be bigots, but the average conservative American just likes to keep things simple and has not had a shred of education on what homosexuality is all about. These little pithy statements like, “Will gay marriage destroy your marriage?” may be true, and may make us feel good, but they don’t really accomplish a whole lot.

    There’s nothing pithy about that question. It isn’t intended to be the least bit sarcastic. It is a logical question intended to point out the illogic of the claim that gay marriage will “destroy marriage.” If it isn’t going to actually have any effect at all on any particular marriageS, how can it destroy marriage itself? And that argument is quite powerful with those capable of grasping logic. Those who are not capable of doing so, at least in this circumstance, are not reachable.

    We will never win the legislative battle because for most Congressmen, endorsing gay rights is political suicide. So we won’t see any progress until we win the hearts and minds of the people. And we need to convince them, nicely, that gays are just normal people like us who want to live out their lives the same way we do. We’ve already started doing that. There are sitcoms now with episodes discussing gay rights. That’s good, we need to see more of that. Anything that gets Joe American to say to himself, “Hey, them gay folks all right!” will be a lot more productive than winning a million arguments through logic and reason

    I certainly agree with most of that. People getting to know actual gay people who, they find out, are just like them is the most powerful weapon in this battle. But I can’t make sitcoms, I can only make logical arguments and words.

  7. #7 Brandon
    June 26, 2007

    You know, if we had tried this tack with interracial marriage, my marriage would probably still be illegal in much of the South.

    But that’s exactly what they did. Yes, there were the protests and marches. We do that too, and they’re great for getting publicity. Yes, civil rights activists were able to win on the small scale through boycotts and legislative battles. But did Martin Luther King Jr. go on a podium and say, “Would me marrying a white woman do anything to your marriage?” and look smug? No, he held out his hands in friendship. He didn’t try to fight anybody or win anything. Although I’m not a history expert, I can guarantee you that an attitude like that got a lot better results than the boycotts and protests.

  8. #8 DuWayne
    June 26, 2007

    Brandon -

    You’re certainly right that we do need to reach hearts and minds, as it were. However, that does not logically infer that logical arguments aren’t necessary. While a lot of bigots aren’t going to be affected by it, some will be. In fact, most people that are going to be reached at all, are going to be reached by both, some of them needing both.

    The battle for equal rights, is a many faceted battle. No one aspect is going to provide the silver bullet that puts down the bigotry, separating gays from equal rights. It must be fought on many fronts, at times in increments (such as civil unions v. full marriage equality). Everyone must do what they are capable of to contribute to that fight, whether it be logical debate, making sitcoms or exposing bigots to gays, going about their daily lives.

  9. #9 Sauron
    June 26, 2007

    Matt Barber of Concerned Women for America.

    I just never can’t get over this. Doesn’t he see how ridiculous that statement looks?

  10. #10 DuWayne
    June 26, 2007

    Brandon -

    You can’t be serious. MLK didn’t win anyone the right to marry a person of another race, that right was won in court. MLK was also one hell of a fighter. Certainly he held his hands out in friendship, but he also used logic and great rhetorical skill, to fight the civil rights battle.

  11. #11 Brandon
    June 26, 2007

    You can’t be serious. MLK didn’t win anyone the right to marry a person of another race, that right was won in court. MLK was also one hell of a fighter. Certainly he held his hands out in friendship, but he also used logic and great rhetorical skill, to fight the civil rights battle.

    Yeah, you’re right. I admit I don’t know anything about history. The only in-depth history course I’ve taken is AP US, about seven years ago, and by the time we reached the 1960s we were already rushed for the test and still had the JFK assassination and Vietnam War to cover.

    And I never meant to say we shouldn’t use logic, just that it seems like we rely on it too much. For every logical statement we make supporting gay marriage, the other side will make a logical statement opposing it (whether or not it’s actually logical), and the average American just sits there and watches the ping pong ball bounce back and forth, if he even sees both sides of the court. All I’m saying is, don’t underestimate the power of emotional appeal.

  12. #12 Robert
    June 26, 2007

    Brandon is right in that we need emotional appeal to win the fight. But we also need logic. And this blog seems to be more dedicated to rational and logically arguing things out, hence it seems as though we only favor the logical argument.

    But I think most of us would agree that we need both. People need to understand that Gays are just people too. They also need to understand that anti-gay marriage rhetoric is absurd on a rational level.

  13. #13 Robert
    June 26, 2007

    Also, has anyone got a quote from Concerned Women for America that isn’t from a man?

  14. #14 steve s
    June 26, 2007

    I don’t think we need anything to win the fight. Have you talked to any young people lately? The fight is over. Equality for gays is inevitable as the older generations die off.

  15. #15 yoshi
    June 26, 2007

    We will never win the legislative battle because for most Congressmen, endorsing gay rights is political suicide. So we won’t see any progress until we win the hearts and minds of the people. And we need to convince them, nicely, that gays are just normal people like us who want to live out their lives the same way we do.

    Hold on here … the problem with your comment is that we -are- winning the legislative battle. Many in “gay rights” groups such as the HRC and lambda legal pursued a strategy of lawsuits to win battles while sacrificing resources that could better be spent on local elections and ballot initiatives. That strategy eventually backfired and more focus is being placed in the legislatures of the states (although the HRC has been of little if no help in this). The bottom line here is that the tide has shifted. As Steve S stated – the younger generation doesn’t see a problem with same sex marriage. Kids are coming out at younger and younger ages and in environments more accepting of them. More and more politicians will see the light as time goes on.

  16. #16 deltasleep
    June 26, 2007

    Sorry, but I believe my generation deserves the “credit” for destroying marriage and everything upon which our society was built. I’m 24, btw. People my age are having horrible, horrible little children right now. Children to unwed parents who see them as a fashionable accessory and see their partner as a tool. These little brats are so inundated with the awful, awful television thats belted to their head in their stroller… I think they’d be the real source of societal degeneration, not gays and lesbians.

  17. #17 DuWayne
    June 26, 2007

    Steve S -

    I don’t think we need anything to win the fight. Have you talked to any young people lately? The fight is over. Equality for gays is inevitable as the older generations die off.

    While it is true that the bigotry is dying off, that doesn’t mean the fight is either over, or a sure win. First, there is a constant push-back from those that are dying off. I think in large part, due to the fact that the bigots recognize that their view is losing steam and will likely fall, in 30 to 40 years. Backed into the corner of an increasingly tenuous position, they are doing everything they can to delay the inevitable. Theres a reason they are fighting (all too successfully) for constitutional ammendments.

    Second, even as we move inexorably forward, there are a lot of people and a lot of families, languishing in fear for the integrity of their family units. The bigots have absolutely no quams about splitting up established, loving families, to further their agenda. We need a remedy for this ,i>yesterday, short of that, we need to fight hard to make it a reality, as quickly as possible.

    Third, it is not entirely inevitable. While a large percentage of kids are growing up without as much bigotry, it is still out there and tides can change. Look at the state of racism in this country, we have come a very long way, but racism is still rampant, fifty years after the major push for civil rights. Not only that, but the racism has evolved, the way people define racism has evolved. Again, I think it is inevitable that racism too, will eventually crumble, but it will do so, only because there are still people fighting it. In fact, I think that in our complacency over all the lengths that we’ve made with racism, there has been a lot of backsliding, here and there.

    I think to an extent that has happened in the gay rights battle too. A lot of people just look at all the success and want to sit on their laurels basking in it. Or appreciate what good liberals they are, for supporting gay rights and ignore the actual fight. Such complacency is simply an inroad for the bigots to prey on the ignorance of the masses and allow that ignorance to be perpetuated.

  18. #18 Science Avenger
    June 26, 2007

    I fisk Barber’s idiocy point by point here. Granted, it is like shooting fish in a barrel, but it needs to be done. It amazes me that people can make the kinds of arguments he makes with a straight face.

  19. #19 David C. Brayton
    June 27, 2007

    John Edwards’ wife was here in the Bay area this weekend. She came out in favor of “marriage equality.”

  20. #20 twincats
    June 27, 2007

    Equality for gays is inevitable as the older generations die off.

    I think that’s true because I have an older friend who refuses to watch any gay-themed TV shows and is appalled by the increasing number of them. This same friend of mine was close friends with a gay man who died of AIDS in the late 80s and visited him daily in hospice before he died. She kept his secret for years in a small Midwestern town and endured at least some ostracizing by folk who strongly suspected the man’s sexual orientation. I can’t get my head around that at all.

    I also agree with DuWayne that the fight must continue because people like my friend oppose gay marriage and she has indoctrinated her two grown children likewise.

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