I’m serious; that is the question. See, I can understand two homosexuals wanting to be united to show their love and commitment to one another through a ceremony of sorts. I acknowledge that same-sex couples want a legal union that allows one’s partner to visit his or her beloved in the hospital, allows a partner access to his or her partner’s health care, and all the other stuff that comes to a married couple. But why on earth gay people need to be married? Why do they insist that their unions be defined as marriage?
Prop 8, a ban on same-sex marriage in California, was recently voted on by the people of California, which is arguably one of the most liberal states in the nation. Yet even here the voters reversed a decision to allow gay marriage. Except for Massachusetts and Connecticut, the other 48 states still define marriage as a legal (and sometimes spiritual) union between a man and a woman. And only a handful of other states recognize the civil unions of same-sex couples. However, we’re not talking about that. We’re talking about marriage.
Marriage. Judging by our high divorce rate in this country, to many it’s just a word, but to many who uphold traditional values, it means a lot. Throughout human history, marriage has been defined and understood as a legal and in later centuries, emotional, union between a man and a woman. The Bible’s first recorded human relationship–that between Adam and Eve–was a marriage! Granted, not everyone cares what the Bible says or believes it is the Word of God. But I do.
My argument isn’t a religious one (though my religious beliefs do oppose gay marriage and the practice of homosexuality). Rather, I am looking at this from a logical perspective. It seems from articles I’ve read, news programs I’ve watched, and conversations I’ve had, that all same-sex couples really want are the same rights given to married couples. I know many people who have no problem with this, but still believe that the institution of marriage needs to be kept as it is.
Why, then, do gay couples, who are seeking to be accepted by the population-at-large, need to use the word “marriage”? Can’t the heterosexuals keep that one? It seems that gay rights advocates would do more for their cause if they abandoned the use of the word “marriage” and came up with another term or simply used the term “civil union”. Plus, anyone who opposes same-sex marriage or the practice of homosexuality is automatically labelled “intolerant.” Now how tolerant is it to force people who don’t agree with your position to give up a tradition that they hold dear?
Then there’s the problem of pastors and other religious leaders who are against gay marriage (and/or homosexuality) being accused of “hate speech” should they speak their opinions from the pulpit. Similarly, churches would be forced to perform gay marriages or risk being charged with “hate crimes”. Sound a bit radical? I doubt most homosexuals would care what pastors say about them and wouldn’t want to get married in a church that doesn’t really want to marry them anyway. But there are always radicals who like to push the issue (you know, like the ones who have protested in California assaulting an elderly woman as well as stomping on her cross [story] and bopping a missionary on the head with a Bible [video]). It’s these folks who will defiantly seek to “make the most” of the laws of the land and in turn, become intolerant of those who they label “intolerant”.
My argument isn’t just logical; it’s personal. I’m no fool. I know that the United States is not a Christian nation and we’re sliding towards a secular progressive worldview. As societies change and evolve, Christians are constantly trying to determine what it means to live for God and follow Christ in this world. So we hold to what we believe is not a cultural or social or secular institution, but a very decree for creation–we hold fast to marriage, which we believe is a spiritual, sexual, emotional, physical, and even legal, union between one man and one woman. There’s a beautiful mystery as “two flesh become one” and there’s a tie-in in how the God is the bridegroom and the Church is His bride.
For me and for many others, marriage is not a word or even an ideal; it is the very definition of not only a husband and wife, but a God and His people. We will stand up and we will protect traditional marriage, even if our pastors are accused of hate speech and our churches are closed due to hate crimes. Some things rock the core of faith, even though they seem silly.
This all seems terribly dramatic, doesn’t it? I mean, why not just make another concession and allow gays to be “married”? Or wait, why can’t same-sex couples just drop it and find a new way to define their relationships in a secular progressive society?