Legalized same-sex marriage is just the beginning

The homosexual marriage movement in Canada will not stop with the legal recognition of same-sex marriages, says David Frum. The next, inevitable step will be to force the churches to sanctify such marriages.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 18, 2003 11:10 AM | Send
    
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How would the government force the churches to sanctify such “marriages”? By canceling their tax-exemption? Good! That would make them more independent.

In the U. S., religious institutions are less dependent on government than they are in Canada, and that difference reflects a difference in the attitudes of the two populations. There’s no way our governments (federal and state) could prosecute a church or other religious institution for hate-crime for refusing to perform or recognize homosexual marriages.

The first effect, I suspect, would be the splitting of many denominations. That might have good long-range consequences, because the pro-homosexual-marriage parts would be those that have lost their spiritual mission anyhow and become subcommittees of the Democratic Party. But even that’s a long way off in the U. S. because our federal government has less power over the states than Canada’s federal government has over the provinces.

Therefore the first challenge will be to do what’s necessary to prevent the pro-h-m movement from using the Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution to spread the Vermont disease to the other 49 states.

Posted by: frieda on June 18, 2003 3:19 PM

Certainly it will take longer in the US than it will take elsewhere; but in the long run it is inevitable without an explicit repudiation of political freedom and equal rights as first principles (i.e. liberalism). This is just one of the many ironies that surround the US: that she is the first explicitly liberal Western polity, and yet she may be the last Western polity to be fully overcome by liberalism.

Posted by: Matt on June 18, 2003 3:27 PM

Posted by: Matt on June 18, 2003 03:27 PM
“without an explicit repudiation of political freedom and equal rights as first principles”

although liberalism is concerned with political freedom and equal rights, they don’t exclusively belong in the domain of liberalism. isn’t more accurate to say that liberalism has a skewed understanding of them and disassociates them from the natural and moral law, while making them obey the dictates of enlightenment rationalism?

isn’t freedom and equal rights when used by liberalism somewhat of an equivocation, depending on how freedom and equal rights is defined?

Posted by: abby on June 18, 2003 4:17 PM

“This is just one of the many ironies that surround the US: that she is the first explicitly liberal Western polity, and yet she may be the last Western polity to be fully overcome by liberalism.”

It may not be ironic but predictable. Since the US was the first liberal polity, she became liberal when liberalism was much more bounded by traditionalism; therefore her liberalism was always more conservative than that of countries that adopted liberalism at a later point.

It’s sort of like the fact that New York City had the world’s first major subway system, but now its subway system is one of the most backward in the world.

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on June 18, 2003 4:49 PM

Abby writes:
“isnít more accurate to say that liberalism has a skewed understanding of them and disassociates them from the natural and moral law […]”

No. Liberalism is the ideology that makes freedom and equal rights into political first principles. Liberalism always involves self-contradiction (and thus as a practical matter the exercise of unprincipled exceptions), no matter who is doing it. To the extent that this group or that adheres to freedom and equal rights as political first principles they are liberals (or have liberal loyalties, if you prefer). There are many different species of liberal; they can often be found in the wild killing each other, killing themselves, killing their children, and killing those they see as oppressor (which often enough is another species of liberal).

In order for the West to survive it has to repent from liberalism. That is, liberalism must be explicitly identified, acknowledged as a terrible willful sinful error, rejected utterly, and penance done for it; and a firm commitment to never again make the error must be made.

Posted by: Matt on June 18, 2003 5:32 PM

The ever-thoughtful Noah Millman says we ought to start thinking of homosexuality as a minority religion. He calls that analogy “far from perfect,” but it certainly does illuminate the problem in a new way.

http://www.gideonsblog.blogspot.com/2003_06_01_gideonsblog_archive.html#105597559049693480

Posted by: Paul Cella on June 19, 2003 12:12 AM

Frieda—in Canada at least, the danger appears to be not merely of cancellations of tax-exemption for churches, but of criminal prosecutions for “hate propaganda”, for example, as suggested in David Frum’s article. Before too long, traditionally-minded religious may be back in a situation comparable to that of Christians in the Roman Empire: too much trouble to systematically persecute most of the time, but always in danger of being denounced to the authorities.

Posted by: Ian Hare on June 19, 2003 6:03 PM

“Canada is approaching a point where traditional beliefs will be simply illegal.” Close paraphrase of article by Nicholas Davidson, Chronicles, circa 1990.

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on June 19, 2003 6:57 PM
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