So says the BBC:
The Spanish government has approved a draft law which will legalise homosexual marriages.
The bill gives same-sex couples the same rights as heterosexual couples, including the right to adopt children.
The Roman Catholic Church and conservative opposition have fiercely opposed the move, which opinion polls suggest has the public's support.
If the bill is approved by parliament, it will make Spain the third EU country to authorise gay marriages.
And naturally, the opposition is making the same absurd argument they always make:
After the vote, the Spanish Bishops' Conference issued a statement saying the cabinet's decision was "wrong and unjust".
"A married couple, producing and educating their children, contributes in an irreplaceable way to the growth and stability of society," the bishops said, adding that a homosexual couple "could never have such characteristics".
I agree with the Bishops, marriage producing children is an irreplaceable component of a stable society. But the argument is still missing that internal link: since gay marriage doesn't decrease the number of straight marriages and doesn't have anything whatsoever to do with whether straight couples marry and produce children, this obviously true statement is utterly irrelevant to the question of gay marriage.
Naturally, if Spain goes through with this, all hell will break loose and people will stop marrying each other, leave their kids to fend for themselves, not care about each other anymore, and...well, what? Oh, and they'll start marrying their dogs and cats. And when those things don't happen, as they haven't happened anywhere else that gay marriage has been legalized, all of those bad arguments against gay marriage will be proven wrong. Think they'll stop making them then? Not on your life. Reality has nothing to do with it and there's no reason to let empirical evidence get in the way of a perfectly good fantasy.
I think the argument against gay marriage always comes down to a fundamental misunderstanding of how sexual orientation is determined. You see time and again the reasons given against gay marriage are always the benefits of heterosexual marriage, like what this Bishop has said. Opponents sincerely believe that by allowing gay marriage, it will become not only legally accepted, but societally accepted as well. From there, with it being seen as "no big deal" they are afraid that the gay population will go up. It's true that the out-of-the-closet population will go up when people are no longer afraid to admit they are gay. But heterosexuals are not going to start turning gay, because heterosexuals are not gay.
I don't know what the scientific reason is for homosexuality's existence, but i do not it is a scientific reason and not a societal one. If they would accept that, they wouldn't have a problem with it either. But accepting that is accepting that God, nature, or whatever, doesn't have a problem with homosexuality. Crossing that bridge takes too much thought and consideration for many people to bother with.
just my take.
They make these nonesense arguements because they know their real reason for opposition isn't palatable to most people: hate. These arguements do not need to function as a rational reason for opposing gay marriage, they simply have to provide a cover for people who oppose it because they don't like gay people and don't want them to have more freedom but know they can't say this out loud.
HAPPY NEW YEAR from Ed and I.
Let's all hope this year brings peace, less destruction from nature, and the right to all persons to marry whomever they wish.
Well said, honey. And Happy New Year to everyone.
Happy New Year to you, Lynn, and to you, Ed, and to all the crew here at Dispatches.
As they used to say, "Have a Hippy New Year." That's after having a "Cool Yule" of course.