Saturday, October 4, 2008

California marriage rights: gays and dinks don't count?!! Can we say "Human Rights Violation" --??

California wedding bells won't be ringing out for gay couples if Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse has anything to say about it; the problem is, boat loads of straight couples ought to find themselves in the same stew ... and if the law is going to be bent out of shape to keep heteros OUT of the stewpot, you've got a nice little human rights violation on your hands here. Marriage is a no-no for gays, Morse insists ... and in the same breath she assigns thousands of straights to, uh, living in sin!

Intrigued? Read on!

Firstly, I can hear the majority of people asking, "Who the hell is Jennifer Roback Morse, and who does she think she is, to tell me what I can, and can't, do with my life?"

Since that's an excellent question, we'll go there first. This is the entity in question:

The short answer is, she's a fundamentalist crackpot with a doctorate. The long answer is, she's she's a fundamentalist crackpot with a doctorate and a big following, and a loud voice in the Christain community, who's never slow to come out fighting on the battlefield of what's being called the Culture Wars. Oh...kay. Next question would have to be, "What the bloody hell are the Culture Wars, and why should I care?"

All right, let's hit Wikipedia for this one: "The culture war (or culture wars) in American usage is a metaphor used to claim that political conflict is based on sets of conflicting values. The term frequently implies a conflict between values considered traditional or conservative and those considered progressive or liberal. The "culture war" is sometimes traced to the 1960s and has taken various forms since then." Unquote. Omigods.

(There's a hell of lot more to it, of course; if you're interested, go here: ... but if you've already heard enough, stay with me -- especially since Wikipedia has red flags up all over the aforelinked article, flags which say flat-out "The neutrality of this article is disputed, and other warnings about unverified claims." Cute.)

If you want to read some baffling and infuriating stuff, get onto Morse's blog, where she's posting piffle like this, from equally soft-headed contributors:

Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Will Increase Prevalence of Homosexuality
Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Will Increase Prevalence of Homosexuality:
Research Provides Significant Evidence
by Trayce Hansen, Ph.D.

Notice, there's another bloody PhD. contributing to this archive of twaddle. Hansen is "a licensed clinical psychologist" (good grief, you mean there are unlicensed ones?!!) who, doctorate and all, has missed the point. Her beef with gay marriage rights runs along these greasy tracks:

    "Certainly homosexual couples can be just as loving as heterosexual couples, but children require more than love. They need the distinctive qualities and the complementary natures of a male and female parent.

    The accumulated wisdom of over 2,000 years has concluded that the ideal marital and parental configuration is composed of one man and one woman. Arrogantly disregarding such time-tested wisdom, and using children as guinea pigs in a radical experiment, is risky at best, and cataclysmic at worst.

    Same-sex marriage definitely isn’t in the best interest of children. And although we empathize with those homosexuals who long to be married and parent children, we mustn’t allow our compassion for them to trump our compassion for children. In a contest between the desires of some homosexuals and the needs of all children, we can’t allow the children to lose."


...and having read that, it's no surprise to find such a major point-misser as Hansen amplifying the twaddle written and performed by Dr. Morse. The two of them are bookends, at least in ideology; it makes sense for them to be found propping up the same redundantly point-missing argument.

Here's Morse's "Mission Statement," quoted right off her page:

    Timeless values are the core of prosperity for business, families and society. The Culture Wars are bad for business. The attacks on timeless values— including marriage, the two-parent family and religion—increase costs, undermine productivity and demoralize your work force. As your Coach for the Culture Wars, Dr. Morse is prepared to defend against these attacks. Using economics, statistics and history, Dr. Morse will help you take ground and avoid losses in the Culture Wars.

Both these people fall neatly into the category of "There you are, you see, you can be an idiot and still get a PhD, and when they have to call you "doctor," you can recite piffle and be listened to."

Holding a PhD is no guarantee against being dead wrong ... and missing the point, big time. The gist of Morse's protests against gay marriage rights, ably backed up by Hansen, is this little snippet, from KFWB NEWS 980:

    LOS ANGELES - Advocates and opponents of gay marriage clashed Thursday at the only public hearing on a ballot initiative that would ban same-sex marriage.
    The focus of the hearing by state lawmakers was Proposition 8, a measure on the Nov. 4 ballot backed by a coalition of religious groups and the California Republican Party.

    Opponents include gay rights advocates, the American Civil Liberties Union, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and director Steven Spielberg and his wife Kate Capshaw.

    Among the first speakers was Jennifer Roback Morse, former president of a pro-family organization, who said same-sex marriages violate the "child-centered institution of marriage."

    "Mothers and fathers are not interchangeable," she said.

Duh. Who ever said they were? Who would WANT them to be?

And since when did gay marriage rights pivot around children? The vast majority of gay couples don't have them ... and probably (if they told you the absolute and politically uncorrect truth), don't want them -- a quality they share with many, many heterosexual couples known commonly as DINKS.

Double income, no kids. No desire for kids. Have panic attacks at the mere thought of the wildest possibility of even running the risk of having kids, where did I put the condoms, for godsakes, I'll get dizzy again if we've run out, Jim, run to the store quick, before they close!!

Marriage is not ONLY about children. It's about FAMILY. And family is not ONLY about procreation. "Family" (look it up) can certainly mean kids, parents, babies, blood-ties, the whole kaboodle; but it also means: "a group of persons who form a household under one head, including parents, children, and servants." ( The key word there is including. In legal jargon they would say, "including but not limited to."

Family is about people meeting, sharing love and affection, becoming joined at the hip, and mutually dependent, being there for each other, sharing the intimacy of spouses, wanting to spend what remains of life with each other. That's family: gay couples and dink couples are equally well described by this definition.

There's no difference. They don't want kids. They just want to be espoused and live happy lives. Children are no part of this equation, any more than they're a part of the plans of hetero couples who marry later in life. Fall romances leading to wedding bells at age 65 or 70 certainly are not going to involve baby carriages and painting the back bedroom pale blue or pink.

So, if these air-head PhDs are right in their 'child centric marriage' ideology, ALL people who do not conform to the rule of what is permissible as a model for (Christian?) marriage, should not be granted the privilege of marriage. Not just some people who don't conform. All. Otherwise you've opened the door to simple, old fashioned discrimination.

If Morse and Hansen and their groupies -- who will be coming out of the woodwork in increasing numbers as the Californian ballot approaches -- are right in their beliefs ... and if we are going to avoid discrimination ... then dink couples should not be allowed to marry, since marriage is an institution designed for raising children, not qualifying for tax cuts and medical benefits! For the same reasons, nor should couples be allowed to marry where the woman is past reasonable child-bearing or adopting age. We'd have to put a "cut off line" on it. Say, somewhat arbitrarily, 65. Menopause is long over, but with hormones and IVF, a baby could happen (and you can always legally adopt -- if the authorities let you; they may not, if you're past retirement) ... even if the mother would be 86 by the time this hypothetical offspring is old enough to walk into a bar and buy a beer.

And if the California Supreme Court doesn't catch the dink couples and the older couples in the same net they used to catch same-sex couples ... I foresee acres of litigation. Square miles of it, in fact. A fecund vale of litigation the size of the Amazon rainforest. Because discrimination is one of the things nobody will tolerate in this day and age.

Or, at least, we say we don't tolerate discrimination.

Time for the people of California to speak with their voting powers. It's not gay rights on the line here. It's human rights. Scratch the surface of the argument made by Morse, and you'll find religion. Bible-babble is right there, confusing the issue yet again. She says in her mission statement, "The attacks on timeless values — including marriage, the two-parent family and religion — increase costs, undermine productivity and demoralize your work force." And the very statistics Morse loves so much say, this is dead wrong. Gays (and dinks) are over achievers. They make more money, spend more readily, and help to support the economic environment. And I can certainly see how it costs the country in dollars and cents, when people wake up and quit the religion habit!

Okay, nuff said: Keegan is now formally hopping down off the soapbox!

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