AZ “Anti-Gay” Bill Vetoed

Wednesday, February 26, AD 2014

As I expected, Arizona governor Jan Brewer has vetoed SB 1062. Though it has been described in the media as a bill that establishes a “right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers”, this is quite false. The aim of the bill was to provide the same protections currently afforded to religious institutions under state law to  “any individual, association, partnership, corporation, church,” “estate, trust, foundation or other legal entity” and to allow religious defense to be used as a defense in lawsuits by the same entities.

In itself, the bill is harmless. It makes no reference to homosexuals, even though the outrageously unjust decision of Elane Photography v. Willock, which may be heard by the Supreme Court at some point in the reasonably near future, was the impetus behind it. In context, however, the bill was quite unnecessary and I believe will ultimately end up causing more harm than good.

In the first place, Elane v. Willock took place in New Mexico, wherein homosexuals are a “protected class” under NM state law. No such protections exist in AZ; ergo, no legislation along these lines was really needed at this time. The actual threat to religious liberty, at least from the vindictive sort of activism that has brought photographers and bakers to court, was non-existent. The summary and background written by proponents of the bill made Elane one of its core concerns without recognizing that NMs distinctive protections for homosexuals were responsible for the legal conflict in that state (as an aside, I do not believe Elane Photography refused service simply because Willock was gay).

Because the bill wasn’t really necessary and a tangible threat in the form of an actual lawsuit against a Christian business owner was not in play, it was easy to see it as an irrationally spiteful measure (as I would see the actions of Vanessa Willock against Elane Photography, by the way). Now it is one thing to have to put up with the left-wing media’s triumphalism when we have a moral duty to make a stand, as Elane Photography and other businesses have; it is another thing to have to witness the spectacle of melodrama from the homosexual political movement and its straight allies as Brewer announced her decision. The passage, veto, and failure of SB 1062 gave aid to our enemies who would trample our religious liberties into dust, and did harm to our own cause. I do not blame Brewer for this. I blame imprudence on the part our well-meaning friends in Arizona. As the governor herself put it:

Senate Bill 1062 does not address a specific and present concern related to religious liberty in Arizona. I have not heard of one example in Arizona where a business owner’s religious liberty has been violated.

We must only fight battles that need fighting. Preemptive strikes didn’t work out too well for George W. Bush and they aren’t going to work out well for the social conservative movement. Right now this country is split – roughly half of it agrees with our basic proposition that the right to free exercise of religion and conscience outweighs a gay couple’s right to have any business they like participate in their gay weddings. If we push for unnecessary legislation against vague or non-existent threats and hand PR victories to the enemies of liberty, that balance could shift against us in short order.

The moral high ground never belongs to perceived aggressors. Only those who strike back in legitimate self-defense can strike with overwhelming force and the moral support of the people. If this lesson is not absorbed, then our cause will never prevail.

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123 Responses to AZ “Anti-Gay” Bill Vetoed

  • I respectfully disagree. It is the veto that sends the wrong message. I don’t think the people of Arizona acting through their legislature has to wait until the situation becomes critical to take proactive measures. This law would have sent a signal to state courts that protection of religious freedom was of paramount concern and that any infringement must be in the interest of a compelling state interest only. They can see in Arizona as we all can elsewhere that advocates of same-sex practices will stop at nothing to advance their agenda. State boundaries mean nothing to those pursuing legitimacy of the “gay” lifestyle at the expense of people of faith. There is no placating such a mindset and there are no lengths that activists will go to harass those who get in their way. The question is will they have the coercive power of the state to back them up. The veto of this bill suggests that in the future in Arizona, they will.

  • Chris,

    I get your objection. I think we are on the defensive, though. I could have told you from day one of the bill’s final draft that Jan Brewer was going to veto it, and for exactly the reasons she said. Her reaction was all but inevitable. I do not think that this means that the totalitarian fanatics will have their way in AZ. I believe Gov. Brewer is an ally – she is pro-life and pro-family. I think she had good reasons for the veto.

    Put the blame with the imprudence behind the bill. Somewhere between “there is no threat” and “its too late” is the sweet spot in which it is safe to take defensive measures. The AZ legislature acted too soon and with an ultimately flawed argument about the implications of New Mexico. Of course the fanatics don’t care about state laws, but they don’t have absolute power. They were able to win in NM – for now, at least – because of NM law. They could not win in AZ – for now, at least – because of AZ law. What AZ social conservatives should focus on is preventing NM-style “protections” from becoming law, if and when those are proposed.

    We have to play it twice as smart and three times as safe because most of the national news media is against us and is looking for ANY reason to paint us as vile bigots destined for the ash heap of history. We are on the defensive and that changes everything about how we play this game.

  • Leading up to her veto, do you believe any of the arguments that AZ was going to suffer financial blow-back if she would of allowed the bill to become law?

    Anyone?

    I found that argument absurd.

  • From the AP.
    The national Hispanic Bar Asso. canceled its convention plans in AZ for 2015.

    I just came across this on associated press. It wasn’t absurd afterall.

    It’s sad that businesses that refuse to serve this lifestyle are going to be dragged into court on discrimination complaints. Because this hasn’t happened yet in AZ was a large factor in her decision to veto? I’m slow. Just catching up. Coffee soon.

  • The gay gestapo, again, wins.

    Next, they’ll sue a parish for refusing to perform Nuptial Rites for a show, sodomy regularization.

    A paltry, few (older religious) black Civil Rights leaders expressed outrage at the false comparison of this fake issue to Solid Democrat south Jim Crow/segregation – it’s a Democrat Party thing.

    In America, Catholics no longer have any right.

  • “A paltry, few (older religious) black Civil Rights leaders expressed outrage at the false comparison of this fake issue to Solid Democrat south Jim Crow/segregation – See more at: http://the-american-catholic.com/2014/02/26/az-anti-gay-bill-vetoed/#comments

    And they are right to do so. There is no way that the discrimination of most ‘protected’ groups in America today can be compared to that of slaves and their descendants.

    But such is the heritage of the civil rights movement. That movement created two things that are not healthy in our body politic. The first is a template that can be followed by anyone who can claim some victimization from invidious discrimination, no matter how paltry (instead of the more reasonable view that the discrimination against blacks was unique and so the template should not have been reused). The second is an addiction to righteous emotions that requires the civil rights movement to never end.

  • (as an aside, I do not believe Elane Photography refused service simply because Willock was gay).” The repugnance of the gay militant agenda is enough to make gentle people avoid it. Its nasty demands covertly assume innocent homosexuals’ lives and smear the virtue of chastity as evil and against their so called license to unnatural marriage and freedom to sodomize each other…(then us).

  • TomD.
    “The first is the template that can be followed by anyone who can claim some victimization from insidious discrimination…”

    Except the unborn.

    What a world.

  • I have mixed feelings about the AZ bill. A few weeks ago I basically supported such an idea. Today I am not so sure. Please permit me to lay out my reasoning.

    It is obvious that homosexuals are using the power of the state to redefine marriage to their advantage (though it has been pointed out that the main advantage of gay marriage is gay divorce).

    It is obvious that other radicals are waiting in the wings to add further redefinitions of marriage (poly-whatever) that will make marriage almost meaningless.

    It is obvious that orthodox Christianity (Catholic, Eastern, and Protestant) considers marriage to be a ‘mystery’ or ‘sacrament’ that cannot be redefined in the manner that is now underway. Please note that I understand that some but not all Protestants are orthodox in their views on marriage.

    So what is happening today, from a Christian viewpoint, is that the secular state is usurping to itself the power to define a sacrament. Arguably the state did this centuries ago when it began to issue marriage licenses and to prohibit clergy from officiating at marriages without a license. This legal power to redefine marriage have lain dormant until now, and the changes in Western societal mores are now driving the state to use this power.

    If the state redefines marriage away from the Christian definition, and if the power of the state and of powerful non-state institutions such as the media are used to defend and propagandize the redefinition of marriage, then Christianity is to some degree being discriminated against, and persecuted. The state is telling Christians that their churches are wrong in a major question of faith and morals. Religious liberty is being undermined.

    The only way out of this insipid persecution is to either return to the original civil definition of marriage, or for the state to get out of the marriage business entirely. The state could stop issuing marriage licenses, and issue only civil union licenses. Marriage thus becomes a purely religious institution. The Church defines marriage for me, and if you don’t like it you can go start your own church and have your own definition of marriage. I’m staying put.

    Think about it. This is precisely what we do regarding the Eucharist. Different churches have different definitions about the Body of Christ. The analogy of the current situation would be that, say, the state has decided that the Lutheran definition is the correct one because it is more inclusive and non-discriminatory, and so the law will recognize it over the non-Lutheran definitions.

    Today Christians who own businesses that serve the public do not discriminate against Lutherans or non-Lutherans. Today’s Christians do not even discriminate against heterosexual adulterers in their businesses. Is homosexuality really that different? Yes, today homosexuals are in the forefront of the de-Christianization of our society, but others (such as divorcees and unmarried contraception users) were in the forefront before them. I personally think that this is the real reason why the AZ bill was supported.

    So, is the fight against gay marriage wrong for us to fight? No, it isn’t. But I would argue that the fight should not be against gay marriage per se, but rather against the state’s support of it. I think we need to say that our Church is important, and it’s teachings on family and sexuality are important, and that we therefore have to right to put our wagon train into a circle and demand the right to not change no matter how the anti-Christians deride us as “haters”. We must demand the right to not have the state cram the redefinition of marriage down our throats and to imply that it agrees with anti-Christians that we are “haters”. Since we have the right to resist all this, we have the right to oppose being forced to give business services to support this state redefinition of marriage.

    In the final analysis, we cannot mount such a fight if we cannot be this particular about our reasons. We cannot use the legal power of the state to keep our society ‘good’ (think of the lack of ‘good’ in an improperly consecrated Eucharist), but our opponents need to see that they can’t use the state in a similar manner. At least over our dead bodies. Your thoughts?

  • I don’t like giving in to bullies, but I don’t think the bill was a good idea– it placed requirements along the lines of “prove it” on folks refusing service.

  • Philip, you are exactly right. The unborn and the profoundly mentally challenged cannot “claim” victim status or anything else without aid from another person. The great god Autonomy recognizes them not.

  • The devil is a liar. When a person says: “I Will, til death do us part”, gives informed consent freely without impediment and then changes his mind, recants his informed consent, his “I WILL, ’til death do us part”, he becomes a liar, a minion of the devil. A liar, a minion of the devil, cannot be trusted in a court of law, not in a church or a court of law without repenting his sin, his crime, his untruth.
    .
    The truth is defended by the Catholic church and must be defended by the court of Justice. If an impediment exists, such as faulty consent, an annulment is given, saying that no marriage, no sacrament was brought to bear. Divorce says that a marriage, a sacrament exists, and that the Church or the state has the power to eradicate a sacrament or a contract made of a man’s free will.
    .
    This is plainly a lie and son of a devil, any and every devil whose name is legion.

  • Mary, you want courts of law to recognize the existence of the devil? Why bother, they already recognize the existence of lawyers. (Sorry Don. Sorry Dad)

  • 🙂 funny….but to easy a target Dave.

  • I know the-devil-and-lawyers is a trope, Philip, but I couldn’t help myself.

  • It’s funny until we need one!

  • We all need to think like lawyers. Jesus did command us to be “as wise as serpents” after all, even as he called on us to also maintain our innocence.

  • “Mary, you want courts of law to recognize the existence of the devil? Why bother, they already recognize the existence of lawyers. (Sorry Don. Sorry Dad)”

    “In Hell there will be nothing but law, and due process will be meticulously observed.”

    Grant Gilmore

  • TomD

    Here in Scotland, until 1940, the state did not regulate marriage. Marriage required —no notice, no formality and no record of any kind. Mere consent of parties, deliberately given, was alone sufficient to constitute a marriage without a moment’s delay without any consent of parents or guardians or any notice to them; add to which that a mere promise of marriage, followed by consummation, or a living together as man and wife, without either formal consent or promise, amounted also to a marriage, being deemed by operation of law to involve presumptions of consent.

    As late as the 1980s, actions for declarator of marriage were a commonplace, often brought 40 or 50 years after the alleged event, usually when the man (it was mostly the man) had died. Widows and children, threatened with disinheritance often enough bought off claims that were little more than blackmail.

    The reasons brought forward for changing the law were obvious:

    1) As regards the rights and interests of the parties themselves, it is obvious that, in order to constitute marriage, the matrimonial consent should be given in a manner which secures previous deliberation, and that, whatever formalities the law may require in the mode of expressing consent, it should be so expressed that neither party can, at the time, entertain a doubt as to the validity of the engagement into which they solemnly enter.
    2) As regards consequences affecting others the matrimonial consent should be given in a manner and accompanied with evidence easily accessible; so that the rights and interests of others may not be exposed to the imminent hazard which arises from any uncertainty with regard to the effects of previous latent subsisting engagements, whether arising from the fraud of one of the contracting parties, or from causes of a less culpable nature, in consequence of uncertainty attending the legal effects of previous conduct.
    3) As regards the rights and interests of future generations, it is of the utmost importance that questions of legitimacy should be avoided, by rendering the proof of marriage so easily accessible, by means of public records, that the claims of future generations by inheritance in the course of lawful descent, may be traced in the most certain and effectual manner.

    I consider these reasons for state regulation unanswerable

  • Michael Paterson:

    I’m not so sure that your points are unanswerable. Point #3 in particular would be moot in a society that cares not a whit for future generations, and shows its intent by contracepting and aborting them out of existence. And all of your points to one degree or another have been only weakly supported by modern ‘government regulation’ – the decay of the traditional family being the chief proof. If this is what marriage is for then government has largely failed.

    But my main (halfhearted) point still stands: all of the positive things you argue for can be gained via civil unions. My argument is that we rename the civil institution of marriage to something else, and let government work toward its just goals through that something else. In the meantime we Christians get to have the marriage we want to have, and no one holding secular power can say we are wrong. Once government leaves the marriage arena the debate over the nature of marriage becomes a theological debate only.

  • TomD-
    when your solution involves the same goals as the Freedom From Religion foundation, perhaps you should re-examine them?

    Incidentally, please stop slandering an entire culture based on the loud idiots. Yes, too many people sin sexually. That is no reason to dynamite the support for those who aren’t, or are trying not to.

  • Foxfier: “when your solution involves the same goals as the Freedom From Religion foundation, perhaps you should re-examine them?”

    I assume this group is one of those, as I put it above, are “radicals [who] are waiting in the wings to add further redefinitions of marriage (poly-whatever) that will make marriage almost meaningless”? Yes, you put your finger on the weak spot in this argument, which is why I am “halfhearted” about it: break the connection with Christian marriage, and the state will come to support ANY combination of legal relationships and will try and call it ‘marriage’. But, they are already doing this. I am making an argument similar to a damage control party who counterfloods a sinking ship: break the connection, and we just might save marriage, though only for us Christians. Haven’t you noticed that the ship is already sinking?

    Slander is a rather strong word. Who did I slander and how? Slander requires untruthfulness. Where was I untruthful?

  • I assume this group is one of those, as I put it above, are “radicals [who] are waiting in the wings to add further redefinitions of marriage (poly-whatever) that will make marriage almost meaningless”?

    No.

    They try to remove all religion from the public sphere.

    Haven’t you noticed that the ship is already sinking?

    1) No, it is not. It’s damaged, but not sinking. Even the “50% of marriages end in divorce” statistic is false.

    Your solution is to look at the USS Cole, with a huge hole in the side, and decide the solution is to blow a hole in the other side, and then declare that those who say stop doing damage are fools who will kill us all because all is lost.

  • Foxfier wrote: “Your solution is to look at the USS Cole, with a huge hole in the side, and decide the solution is to blow a hole in the other side, and then declare that those who say stop doing damage are fools who will kill us all because all is lost.”

    A ship the size of the USS Cole lacks transverse bulkheads, so they do flood all the way to the other side when holed, but on larger naval ships that is almost precisely what damage control teams do, though they don’t actually blow a hole. I brought up the analogy because of your “when your solution involves the same goals as the Freedom From Religion foundation, perhaps you should re-examine them” comment. It occurred to me that years ago the Imperial Japanese Navy strove to flood U.S. Navy ships, and U.S. Navy damage control strove to flood them, and so the uninitiated would think that the IJN and USN goals were the same. They both flooded the same ships, right? Therefore, it does not logically follow that an idea of mine is suspect because a spiritual enemy of ours advocates it. My reason is not their reason, and I think I was clear on that.

    BTW, a fun digression: naval architects will tell you that the first priority in designing a ship is “that it does not sink”. A no-brainer, right? The second priority is “that if it sinks the people can get off it”. Paramount to this second priority it to avoid designs that could cause a ship to turn turtle. The U.S. Navy refused to allow transverse bulkheads in cruisers, and felt vindicated after a few Royal Navy cruisers turned turtle in WW2. Better to flood a ship all the way across than to lose a crew.

  • Oh, one more thing. The “ship” I hade in mind for sinking is not the Church, that is in fact growing around the world. It is our Western society that is sinking – remember that current German birth rates will lead to the extinction of Germans by 2500 AD, and the Western elites who think this is a good thing to emulate have their countries on the same path, only slower. I don’t think it need sink, damage control is still possible, and it ought to be saved. But it is slowly sinking.

  • They both flooded the same ships, right? Therefore, it does not logically follow that an idea of mine is suspect because a spiritual enemy of ours advocates it. My reason is not their reason, and I think I was clear on that.

    It does not matter what your reason was, when your result is the same.

    Major difference being, ie, when those who flood both sides are there is still a ship, while when you blow out the other side the wounded ship sinks.

  • Your original point was on “society”.

    Which, amazingly enough, I am a member of– and which has not even hit a 50% failure rate, let alone an “abandon all hope” type failure rate.

    I frankly do not give a fig what assumptions based on people doing the same blessed thing they’re doing right now for five hundred years would result in, because past evidence holds that PEOPLE DON’T KEEP DOING THE SAME THING FOR FIVE HUNDRED YEARS.

  • “In Hell there will be nothing but law, and due process will be meticulously observed.” Grant Gilmore .
    Jesus descended into hell. The laws of hell refused Him entrance. Jesus took the patriarchs and ascended into heaven.
    .
    “when your solution involves the same goals as the Freedom From Religion foundation, perhaps you should re-examine them?”
    .
    The Freedom From Religion Foundation can say nothing to me or to the courts or to the state.
    Atheists are tolerated. Atheism is unconstitutional. The First Amendment: “or prohibit the free exercise thereof” is freedom of religion to me in the public square.
    .
    God gives us this: genius
    .
    “The Civil Rights Acts that banned discrimination on the basis of race by private vendors were unusual legislative acts based on an unusual situation: state governments that mandated such discrimination by private businesses. It took government action to break down such government mandated discrimination. Absent such government mandated discrimination, I think most Americans, if they truly ponder it, would be all in favor of businesses discriminating in some cases. For example, I assume few people are against restaurants discriminating against nudists by mandating clothes. I imagine few Americans would feel comfortable telling a black owned barbecue restaurant that they must cater a Klan rally. A Jewish run deli really should not be required to provide take out for the group calling for divestiture from Israel. I am not going to represent the owner of an abortion clinic under any circumstances. In theory Americans might be against private discrimination in commerce, but when it comes down to actual cases, I suspect that almost all Americans are not non-discrimination absolutists. When businesses discriminate they of course run the risk of losing customers, but freedom of the consumer goes along with freedom for the vendor.”

    – See more at: http://the-american-catholic.com/2014/02/27/private-discrimination-is-as-american-as-apple-pie/#sthash.6tZ6zQzl.dpuf
    .
    Laws that the government makes and that are or that become unjust, the government must unmake. Otherwise, government used to engineer its citizens through corrupt laws is government without law.
    .
    Capitalism, like social Justice, is about giving to persons what they truly need as opposed to what they want.
    .
    Do gays need unnatural marriage? Or cakes for their counterfeit vows? Does the gay agenda need to arrogate the office of husband or wife and militate against virtue? Does gay addiction lead to happiness?

  • Foxfier, past evidence shows that people often DO do the same thing for five hundred years. And you know what? Even if they don’t the damage is often irreversible. Europe is dying, the birthrate implosion is real and will not change unless there is Divine intervention. America is not dying but there are those here who want us to be like Europe. If you are going to argue these facts are wrong then I’m simply going to give up on you.

  • Thanks Mary for reminding me that I have to read that “apple pie” article. I’ve been away for much of the day.

    When I took my business law courses the first thing I was told was that “law creates discrimination”, and the section you quote shows that very well. This fact is why civil right law is based on outlawing “invidious” discrimination – in effect civil rights law discriminates among different discriminations: a few are bad, but most are good.

  • Tom D.
    .
    Lying in a court of law is still called perjury. The child is evidence of the marital act between a man and a woman. It is no small reason why abortion is prevalent. The courts may uphold the marriage vow as a legal contract between two persons.

  • “3) As regards the rights and interests of future generations, it is of the utmost importance that questions of legitimacy should be avoided, by rendering the proof of marriage so easily accessible, by means of public records, that the claims of future generations by inheritance in the course of lawful descent, may be traced in the most certain and effectual manner.”
    .
    Somewhere I learned that any child born into a marriage, although he may be illegitimately begotten, is a child who is legally a member of that family.
    .
    “I consider these reasons for state regulation unanswerable”
    .
    If you mean, Michael Paterson-Seymour, that the state has nothing to say about the matter, except to uphold the law, you are correct.

  • TomD

    A great Scottish judge. Lord Meadowbank famously declared (Gordon v Pye (1814)) that private pacts “cannot impede or embarrass the steady uniform course of the jus publicum, which, with regard to the rights and obligations of individuals affected by the three great domestic relations, enacts them from motives of political expediency and public morality and nowise confers them as private benefits resulting from agreements concerning meum et tuum, which are capable of being modified and renounced at pleasure. Accordingly, the case of Campbell of Carrick in rejecting the competency of any personal objection to bar a pursuer of declarator of marriage establishes by the highest authority the incompetency and inefficiency of any obligations, not sanctioned by the common law, to operate on matrimonial rights.”

    Speaking of foreign marriages, he said, “Matrimonial rights and obligations, on the contrary, so far as juris gentium, admit of no modification by the will of parties and foreign courts are therefore nowise called upon to inquire after that will or after any municipal law to which it may correspond. They are bound to look to their own law and it is with all deference thought to be in a particular degree contrary to principle to make that law bend to the dictates of a foreign law in the administration of that department of internal jurisprudence, which operates directly on public morals and domestic manners… This category of law does not affect the contracting individuals only, but the public and that in various ways; and the consequences would prove not a little inconvenient, embarrassing and probably even inextricable, if the personal capacities of individuals, as of majors or minors, the competency to contract marriages and infringe matrimonial obligations, the rights of domestic authority and service and the like were to be qualified and regulated by foreign laws and customs, with which the mass of the population must be utterly unacquainted.”

    This applies with equal force to the notion that every sect might establish its own laws governing these matters.

  • Tom D.

    Apology owed. I mis-quoted you.
    Unintentional. Invidious! “insidious” was used. Excuse me.

    Mary DeVoe.

    “Freedom of the customer goes along with freedom of the vendor.”
    It makes sense.
    So the Gay mafia is feeling the power swing that’s been propelling their agenda, so they are riding the wave and complaining in a court of law whenever they feel insulted?
    This is honestly more of a offensive move on their part then defending themselves aginist discrimination.
    It’s part of the war on Christian values.

  • Have there been any cases of devout Catholic vendors being sued for refusing to cater/photograph/host, etc. the wedding or reception of a couple who had been divorced (without obtaining a decree of nullity) from their previous spouses, or who were otherwise marrying outside the Church? According to Catholic teaching, those unions are also not true marriages and Catholics must not endorse or cooperate in them. The usual pastoral counsel for individuals in these cases is either 1) decline to attend or participate in the wedding or reception and don’t send gifts because that would be cooperating in a sinful act, or 2) attend in order to keep family peace but make clear ahead of time that you believe their action to be morally wrong.

    That said, I’ve never personally heard of a Catholic photographer, caterer, etc. asserting or being told that he/she has a moral obligation to refuse service should he/she discover that the couple in question are Catholics marrying outside the Church. Nor have I ever been told that a Catholic court clerk has a moral obligation not to sign off on marriage licenses for couples remarrying after divorce or Catholic couples not marrying in the Church (provided, of course, that they KNOW the couple is in this situation — which is one significant difference, a same-sex couple is always obvious while a male-female couple attempting a marriage not sanctioned by the Church isn’t.)

    I bring this question up for two reasons: first, to discover whether there have indeed been any such cases that I just don’t know about, and second, to make the point that if Catholic vendors, etc., have not previously shown any moral qualms about serving opposite-sex wedding ceremonies that, according to their beliefs, were illicit, might that not be undermining their present argument that they have a grave moral obligation to refuse same-sex couples? And if that’s the case, does this mean that for consistency, maybe Catholic vendors need to also start being more selective about which “traditional” opposite-sex couples they serve? Or maybe just not do weddings at all except as a personal favor to people they know and trust? For example, if a baker normally just sold regular baked goods and didn’t advertise to the public that they had any means for doing wedding catering.

  • Elaine.
    You ask good questions.
    A baker having to be worried about being sued if they decide to protect their conscience. Weird times.
    Here’s one; From Vision to America this morning. The girl scouts named their NYC “Girl Experience Officer” as Krista Kokjohn-Poehler. An openly gay/lesbian who has a partner, and now holds this interesting title in the organization.

    Girl experience officer. Watch your cookies. As for our family…no thanks.

  • Elaine,

    None of the high-profile cases thus far have involved Catholics, to my knowledge. We are well represented when it comes to the HHS mandate but not when it comes to the individual business issue.

    It could be because more Catholics (self-identified, at any rate) defy Church teaching on both issues than evangelical Protestants do on the gay wedding issue.

  • Hi Elaine! You wrote “…second, to make the point that if Catholic vendors, etc., have not previously shown any moral qualms about serving opposite-sex wedding ceremonies that, according to their beliefs, were illicit, might that not be undermining their present argument that they have a grave moral obligation to refuse same-sex couples?”

    That is very much the point that I making in a more backhanded way, although I mostly cited the Eucharist as the affected sacrament. I think this is a very valid point. And why did it happen? Because people see the possibility of conflict between standing up for church teaching and charity. They did years ago, of course, but charity didn’t win out as often as it does today. Oh, and I am deliberately using today’s definition of charity, since the very valid concept of “false charity” have very little traction anymore.

    So, if Christian business owners serve illicit heterosexual ceremonies, can they logically still reject homosexual ceremonies? Up until now they have, and they have justified it on natural law arguments, which tell us that homosexuality IS different. Natural law has, not coincidentally, come under attack. The ABA, for example, has done its best to remove natural law as a philosophical underpinning of constitutional law, which is why courts so rarely cite the Declaration of Independence anymore. Many people today still basically follow in natural law for judgment on the morality (or lack thereof) of homosexual acts, but thanks to pro-homosexual propaganda have trouble using it in discriminating circumstances.

  • Foxfier, past evidence shows that people often DO do the same thing for five hundred years

    Where?

    Where is your past evidence that it is reasonable to expect Germany to be depopulated in 500 years due to the birth rate not changing at all in that time?

  • Philip: “Mary DeVoe. “Freedom of the customer goes along with freedom of the vendor.”
    This common sense comes from Donald McClarey.

  • Elaine

    It could be that Catholic moral theologians have often taken a generous view on when “remote material co-operation” is permitted, with a suitable “direction of intention.”

    The 17th century Casuists were very lenient. Thus, Étienne Bauny SJ says, “Let confessors observe that they cannot absolve servants who perform base errands, if they consent to the sins of their masters; but the reverse holds true, if they have done the thing merely from a regard to their temporal emolument.” He instances carrying letters and presents to the ladies their master wishes to seduce.

    Similar considerations apply to tradesmen. So, according to Vincenzo Filliucci SJ, a locksmith may sell picklocks and skeleton keys to a thief, for use in his general business as a housebreaker; he is not complicit in the sins the thief subsequently resolves to commit with them. It is otherwise, if the locksmith copies the keys of a particular house that he knows the thief is planning to break into. In that case, he is art and part of the particular theft.

    I am sure the theologians could have relieved the scruples of florists and bakers.

  • Mary DeVoe
    and
    Donald McClarey.

    Thanks. I didn’t realize it was Donald’s comment.

  • Foxlier, many people, including Germans, allowed their societies to be anti-Semitic in one form or another for more than 500 years. Islam as practiced by many has been a destructive societal force for far more than 500 years. I could name others. So I can conclude that it is possible for the modern Western pseudo-utopia to provide for the next 500 years the contraception and abortion and television and vacations that will basically eliminate their populations.

    BTW, you have a bad habit of misrepresenting my statements. I did not maintain that Germany will be depopulated, and even by inference depopulation is not the most reasonable conclusion. Germans will not disappear by dwindling to four, then two, then one. They will disappear because they will intermarry with their more numerous replacements.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour: I agree with Lord Meadowbank on civil marriage. I don’t think his view is really counter to mine, which is that an ahistorical Lord Meadowbank cannot use Scottish law to tell the Church what the nature of Christian marriage is, and that the Church has every right to resist the ahistorical Lord Meadowbank’s attempts to better it in moral and sacramental theology.

    I really liked your post on the Casuists. There is so much to history.

  • You said:
    It is our Western society that is sinking – remember that current German birth rates will lead to the extinction of Germans by 2500 AD, and the Western elites who think this is a good thing to emulate have their countries on the same path, only slower.

    This is not on par with “being anti-Sematic, in one form or another” nor is it on par with “being Islamic.”

    You also then accuse me of misrepresenting you because:
    I did not maintain that Germany will be depopulated, and even by inference depopulation is not the most reasonable conclusion.

    So you believe the Germans will be extinct based on extrapolating current birth rates if they go on for 500 years, but the only evidence you can offer are ideas?
    I suppose I should be glad you didn’t decide to defend it by saying “people have been eating for a long time!”

    You have not defended your claim, and your false accusation that I am misconstruing you is just silly.

  • Don, what do you think is up with this Foxfier? A troll, a paid troll, or what? I normally reply to posts like these because I assume that a teen might be reading it, but this baiting has gotten out of hand.

  • Foxfier is a co-blogger TomD and a master at combox to an fro. This blog is as much hers as it is mine.

  • OK, I agree, I clicked on the avatar and found the Head Noises site, so its legit. But I’m sorry, I’ve counted two serious misrepresentations, so I see nothing masterful about this. Hyperbolic misquoting does not engender respect from the quoted.

  • False accusations do even less.

  • If you apply your standard of truth to yourself you could not prove anything by anyone to be false.

  • You made a silly claim that assumed that birth rates would stay the same for 500 years because I objected to your slander about us being “a society that cares not a whit for future generations, and shows its intent by contracepting and aborting them out of existence.”

    Never mind actually offering some sort of support for this defeatism– basic logic would indicate that the portion of society that is preventing and killing their progeny isn’t going to be taking over the culture. Familiarity with how younger folks tend to be more pro-life than the older ones is one point of support.

    Nope, the reasonable reaction is to remove religion from the public sphere. To save the ship, or something.

  • If you apply your standard of truth to yourself you could not prove anything by anyone to be false.

    That is false.

    The only “standard of truth” I’ve been promoting is going beyond assertion and hand-waving; you made a specific claim, and when asked to support the assumption that a half century would not change birth rates, pointed to things not even vaguely similar.

  • The birth rate claim is not silly. Mark Steyn and Theodore Dalrymple (who you approvingly quote on your Head Noises site) have made it. Their writings convinced me that it is a reasonable position to take.

    Who is the “us” that I am slandering? I still don’t know. Is the U.S.? Europe? The West?. Again, I am just quoting Steyn and Dalrymple about Western trends, so after you let me know who the “us” is please tell me, are they slandering “us” too?

  • You keep making claims of “misrepresentation,” but the one time you tried to support it the problem is… well, not clear– you say “current German birth rates will lead to the extinction of Germans by 2500 AD,” I say that extrapolating birth rates without change is silly, and you object that of course the reasonable way to read that is not that you’re assuming birth rates will stay steady, but that they will dwindle and intermarry.

    Which has nothing to do with what I said.
    Showing how a population at one point did keep the same birth rate for 500 years would be relevant, even if it was something like consistently having replacement +1 for women, without averaging more than a decade into the stats. That would be really good evidence. “People follow a religion and hate outsiders,” not evidence.

  • If you can’t figure out that we’re all part of society, you’re either foolish or being willfully obtuse– AKA, trolling.

    The birth rate claim is not silly. Mark Steyn and Theodore Dalrymple (who you approvingly quote on your Head Noises site) have made it.

    Steyn’s observations do not assume that nothing will change. That is a major difference between him and yourself.

    Dr. D doesn’t assume that all is lost so we should abandon ship. That’s another major difference.

    They do both recognize that the culture is in trouble, and that there is a major drop in birthrates– but they’re calling attention to it to change it, not to throw their hands up and surrender.

  • Foxfier & Dave.
    It’s The American Catholic, not The American Protagonist.

    You both have acquired so much and share in your wealth of experience knowledge and virtue. Please share more virtue between yourselves.

    From the freshmen class.

  • I think you mean Donald?

    Not clear what you’re talking about either way, Philip.

  • Philip, Foxfier seems to have developed a personal animus towards me. Also, note the answer to me about Mark Steyn: “Steyn’s observations do not assume that nothing will change”. This is a half truth. What Steyn has written is that these trends, if unchanged, will lead to one outcome that Foxfier disputes, and if changed will lead still lead to a slightly different outcome because it will come too late, but Foxfier disputes this too (actually, Foxfier acts as if they are one outcome, because this makes it easier to argue with me). At least I can find the Steyn quotes if Foxfier demands it. I do recall one: “These countries are going out of business”, which sounds a lot like my “slanders”.

    Right before I wrote this note I picked up my youngest from school and dropped into the office to pick up what I need for work tomorrow. I was thinking “I hope Foxfier just says that ‘Steyn and Dalrymple are silly too, and here’s why…'” because then I would know that it’s not personal. Alas…

  • Europe is dying, the birthrate implosion is real and will not change unless there is Divine intervention.

    No. There has been a recovery in fertility rates in much of Europe, excluding the Germanophone states, the Balkans, Italy and Spain. British and French fertility rates are at replacement levels and Russia’s are improving. The World Bank puts the mean fertility rate for “Europe & Central Asia” at 1.95 children per woman per lifetime. If you bracket out the Muslim states therein, that’s north of 1.8 for the remainder. The nadir for total fertility rates was in 2002 at 1.85, so a recovery to replacement levels for quondam Christian Europe is conceivable within a generation.

    Mark Steyn is a talented commentator but he makes errors with the math.

  • Oops, I’ve found that I’ve made a mistake, can’t remember everything these days. AD 2500 is not the year that Germans will disappear if their birthrates are unchanged, it is the approximate year of humanity’s disappearance if the entire globe were to adopt current German birthrates starting today. This implies that the Germans probably won’t even make it to 2500. Sorry.

  • Art, do those World Bank statistics for Europe include their Muslim populations? I think they do, and based on the observations of Steyn and Dalrymple and others I’d conclude that the “recovery” is simply due to more Muslims.

  • Per the Pew Research Center, non-indigenous Muslims make up less than 6% of Europe’s population and France has a proportion only slightly larger than that. The main source countries (Turkey and the francophone Maghreb) do not have exceptional fertility rates (around replacement rates for Turkey, Algeria, and Tunisia, somewhat higher for Morocco).

  • Algeria’s fertility rates have improved in recent years, so Algeria and Morocco are both around 2.8. Steven Mosher was speculating a while back that European Muslims had fertility rates around 4.0, but you only see rates like that in Tropical Africa these days and a two or three equally impoverished countries elsewhere.

  • What is the definition of “non-indigenous Muslims”? Since the Islamic immigration to Europe began in the 1950’s, it is possible that there are now two to three generations in Muslim families that are native born, and some intermarriage with the “indigenous” population has occurred. I must confess that I have had some suspicion of European statistics since I found that most European countries count children who die 2-3 days after birth as stillbirths.

  • Oy….

    You accuse me of this, that and the other thing, refuse to support what you claim, grudgingly admit that a contributor might, possibly be legit…and I’m the one with animus against YOU?

    You’re not that important.

    You’re annoying in that you smear the entire of society with the sad, sick and lied to that are poisoning themselves and killing their kids, but no, insistance on something of substance to back up your claims is not about you.

  • Art, is that Stephen W. Mosher? If so please know that I hadn’t heard of him and just looked him up. Very interesting, I’m going to read more on him and by him. Thank you!

  • Thank you for confirming the animus

  • “grudgingly admit that a contributor might, possibly be legit” Sorry Foxfier, but it’s your hostility that sowed the doubt in my mind. I’m glad to have put it aside.

  • Just made it back.

    TomD and Foxfier.

    Please pardon my intrusion.
    I was loosing sight of your debate because of the dust being stirred up.
    That was my mention of virtue in a (drama sequence) that unfolded between two good people. I’m sorry to bud in Foxfier. I respect your positions ( prove it comment you made relating to the AZ bill that was killed) Good point!
    I respect the opinions of TomD. I was enjoying your debate but soured on the insults that transpired.
    So. Instead of moving on I was beating around the bush that We are Catholics.
    We forgive. We encourage each other just as your many posts and topics have done in the past on this site.
    Peace to both of you.

  • Philip- I thought that was what you were going for.

    Thing is, you can’t forgive someone who not only doesn’t repent, they find the very mention that they’ve done something wrong to be justification for doubling down, then escalating to every wilder accusations.

  • Foxfier.

    Thing is I Can forgive someone whom I believe wronged me, and based upon past actions, very well may wrong me again.

    Unforgiven is a good Western movie starring Gene Hackman. Unforgiven in real life is more violent than the movie.

  • Returning to an earlier topic… thanks to all who responded to my question. I guess what I really want to know is, in Catholic teaching, where do you draw the line between “just doing your job” with no endorsement of the customer’s/client’s action expressed or implied, and engaging in morally unacceptable cooperation with an evil action? Obviously we cannot just blindly “follow orders” like Nazis marching Jews into the death camps, but neither can we rigidly avoid ALL cooperation or potential cooperation with actual or potential sin without becoming hermits who live off the grid. It’s not always easy to find the middle ground here.

  • Elaine: I hope this helps.
    .
    Justice, like beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Justice is predicated on intent.
    Capitalism itself is giving to people what they need, not what they want.(The generosity of the vineyard owner giving a day’s wages to those who worked only a few hours to save their very lives is charity. The vineyard owner’s act is also Justice to an equal person.)
    .
    Fulfilling people’s wants through the burden of the law is nonsense.
    .
    Christ overturned the money changers tables because there was no charity in the moneychangers’ transactions. In America we are bankrupt because there is no charity in over the counter business. There must be charity. When God is exiled from His creation there is no charity or Justice.
    .
    In the matter of bakers and photographers, the militant gay agenda is not seeking cakes or photos. The militant agenda of the gays is inciting to riot (violating peaceable assembly for the shop owners who have a civil right to peaceable assembly) until they have achieved their goals which is to inflict sodomy on our nation and our future generations and it is within our power to prevent this vice.

  • Somehow, this keeps coming up…. to forgive or not. Folks tend to skip over the asking for forgiveness part, even indirectly. I’ve got a theory that it’s because the “rebuke” part is so hard. In our culture, even the implication than an individual did wrong (as opposed to an amorphous group) is treated as a wrong in itself. Judgmental, in the language of the 60s.

    Part of the problem with a discussion about forgiveness is the assumption that if you haven’t forgiven, you’re actively holding the wrong to your chest and polishing it. That’s what works best for dramatic purposes, after all, and a baked in cultural assumption that someone who has done wrong wants forgiveness. (and not permission) Another is the point #2 at Catholic Answers.

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  • Elaine

    Bl John Henry Newman recounts the story of Cardinal della Somaglia and M. Emery, Supérieur of St. Sulpice and a noted moral theologian. The Cardinal told M Emery that, after the most painstaking research, he was convinced that he could not, in conscience, assist at the Emperor’s second marriage to the Archduchess of Austria. M, Emery told him that he should, for no consideration, act against his conscience.

    When word got around amongst the other twenty-six Cardinals, then in Paris, Cardinal Fesch (who by the by was the Emperor’s uncle) wrote to M. Emery, asking why he had expressed the contrary opinion to him and had told him that he thought the Cardinals might attend, in good conscience.

    M. Emery replied that he was indeed of the opinion that the Cardinals might attend; he had given the advice he had to Cardinal della Somaglia, because one may never go against conscience, even an erroneous one – « qu’on ne pouvait, qu’on ne devait jamais, agir contre sa conscience, même erronée. » M. Emery added that, whilst inconveniences can never be a reason for acting against conscience, they can be a very good reason for considering carefully, whether one’s conscience may not be in error.

    In the event Cardinal della Somaglia kept to his view, contrary to M. Emery, and did not attend the marriage ceremony. And who shall say which of them was right? Often, in the application of agreed principles to particular facts, we have no other guide than our own conscience.

  • Judging from history I would say that the consciences of most people are infinitely flexible when it comes to doing what they have decided to do. Rather than a conscience being a guide, for many people it is merely a rubber stamp.

  • Foxfier.
    Catholic Answers link was very helpful. My thanks to you and apology for “my” misunderstanding. Peace.

  • *bow*

    I like semantics. It fits how my brain works.

    As I understand it, you’re right in YOUR meaning, and I’m right in MY meaning, but we’re using different meanings– you are very right that we can’t go “oh, he wronged me, I will polish that wrong and hate his guts.” That’s how forgive gets used commonly, and looking around it’s a very common problem, especially if someone has been seriously wronged.

    Part of what is so awesome about the Church is how things ARE explained, if you can find it; part of what’s great about the ‘net is that you can find the stuff, if you know who to ask.

    Kind of freaky, turned on Sacred Heart radio– not an all that common occurrence– and got their lady’s program, where they were talking about the exact same topic, with the same emphasis repentance and then you forgive.

    Enough to make ya think…..

  • Foxfier wrote: “Thing is, you can’t forgive someone who not only doesn’t repent, they find the very mention that they’ve done something wrong to be justification for doubling down, then escalating to every wilder accusations.” This is exactly how I feel about Foxfier’s writings about me, especially after I produced a Mark Steyn quote “These countries are going out of business” that was very close to what I wrote. As far as the AD 2500 statistic, yes, I had a senior moment, misremembered the exact meaning of the statistic, and I owed up to the confusion it may have caused, even though the basic truth was not affected. Senior moments are not sins and don’t require repentance. They just don’t.

    Here are how the two other exchanges that I found questionable appear to me:

    Exchange #1:
    Me: I’m arguing in favor of something like counterflooding in damage control.
    Fox: You don’t blow a hole in the side of a ship to save it
    Me: I never wrote anything about blowing a hole (thinking to myself ‘damage control parties don’t usually blow holes, the open seacock valves’)
    Fox: Yes you did

    Exchange #2
    Me: Germans will go extinct by 2500
    Fox: You cannot say that Germany will be depopulated
    Me: I never wrote that Germany will be depopulated (thinking to myself ‘the Germans will intermarry and merge with their replacements, Germany as a place will stay populated’, I even typed this out)
    Fox: Yes you did.

    I was misunderstood in these two exchanges and I tried to correct the misunderstanding, even to being very explicit in the second exchange. The corrections were not accepted. Go back and read them, I am not making this up. What choice do I have but to consider them to be misrepresentations if they persist? BTW, the differences in these exchanges are really small and unimportant, it is the hostility apparent in Foxfier’s replies that really bothered me. Foxfier came after me and after me over and over in a very hostile manner. It was almost cyberbullying as far as I am concerned. The only other time I ever faced this on a Catholic site was a time Mark Shea misrepresented my writing at NCReg, and this was worse. I am not happy.

    Frankly, the uncharitable language that I used is something I do regret and I am morally sorry. I really didn’t want to use it. I’ve been here on and off for only a few months and I never met Foxfier, so I suspected trolling. Don set me straight on that, but he also green-lighted Foxfier’s posts that I found objectionable. You will note that I only got personal and uncharitable after Don’s post. That is NOT how I like to do things, and I apologize to Philip and to others who were bothered by it.

    The funny thing about all this is that right at the beginning I conceded that Foxfier was right about the most important point: the moral corruption of government that is being caused by the redefinition of marriage for homosexuals and eventually others. I threw a proposal on the table that I felt had some merit but also had real moral problems. Foxfier picked it right apart, very good, I’m happy, we even agreed on the fundamentals even if in a few details we did not agree. But the “slander” term was used in the same breath, as far as I’m concerned I slandered no one, this was a personal attack, and it went downhill from there. I still for the life of me cannot understand how I can be slandering the people of Western civilization by pointing out the truth about their use of contraception and abortion. Forty million abortions in the USA alone is proof that our society doesn’t really care about its future in any realistic way. Is that untrue? If so why? I really want to know.

  • Oh, and as J. Jonah Jameson put it “Don’t you tell me that it’s slander, it’s not slander, it’s libel”

  • slan·der [slan-der] Show IPA
    noun
    1.
    defamation; calumny: rumors full of slander.
    2.
    a malicious, false, and defamatory statement or report: a slander against his good name.
    3.
    Law. defamation by oral utterance rather than by writing, pictures, etc.

    Somehow, it makes perfect sense that JJ was a lawyer before he was a newspaper guy.
    ***
    But the “slander” term was used in the same breath, as far as I’m concerned I slandered no one, this was a personal attack, and it went downhill from there.

    You made a false claim about the entirety of society; the entire cast of the contributor’s page here– if you want to be suspicious, just the priest and the folks with at least three kids– are obviously not “contracepting or aborting” the next generation out of existence.
    A lot of the non-Catholics I know aren’t using contraception, but can’t manage to have kids because they were told only crazy religious people get married before they’re done with college, have a career established, are 25, whatever.

    Use the fertility rate because that helps correct for the changes from people living longer.
    Assume, just to have a number that is obviously high, that a 3.5 fertility rate is a natural average.
    We’re now at about a 2.0 fertility rate.
    That is a 1.5 drop; if you assume that a quarter to a half of the population hasn’t changed, and the rest is killing off/preventing their kids at value zero, one or two, then stir in people (especially women) being told that they are insane if they wish to be married before they graduate college and that motherhood is a waste.
    That, of course, doesn’t touch on the couples that I know who have been trying for years to have even ONE child, but can’t, and the only medical help they are offered is IVF or “hire a womb.”
    The problem with calculating out of wedlock births is that being married removes you from the pool for a lot of benefits, and that illegal immigrants (at least per the nurses in Spokane, when I gave birth to Princess) frequently gave birth under a false name and claimed to be unmarried, even when wearing a ring that matched the guy who stayed in the room with the new mother.
    ***
    For the rest-
    you are so set that I misrepresented you that you misrepresent me. That suggests the only path to peace is to throw our hands in the air and say “not speaking the same language.”

  • (sorry for ANOTHER lawyer joke, Donald)

  • TomD.

    No worries Tom. I seriously was enjoying your overview and opinions on (so-called same sex marriage and the role of the State in these matters in relationship to redefining Marriage.)

    I also appreciate Foxfier’s knowledge and opinions on current events issues and challenges. Actually MPS,Elaine,Mary,Don,(kiwi too) and you get the idea, they all bring so much to the table, and I’m grateful.

    “slandering an entire culture based on loud idots…” That’s her choice of words.
    Okay. God bless freedom to express yourself. For some, it seemed a tad harsh. She wasn’t speaking to me, however I did feel the tone that “kicked up some dust” in my opinion.
    The best part is this.
    We take the good and leave the rest.
    Foxfier helped me understand an important distinction relating to forgiveness today. I’m in her debt.
    You have ideas that I get to ponder on in this whacked out liberal laden landscape of 2014. I visit this site for many reasons, mostly for my continued supplement of faith.
    Take good care..all of you.
    ……and Paul P…all of you are great gifts.

  • Art Deco.
    🙂

  • “slandering an entire culture based on loud idots…” That’s her choice of words.
    Okay. God bless freedom to express yourself. For some, it seemed a tad harsh. She wasn’t speaking to me, however I did feel the tone that “kicked up some dust” in my opinion.

    How would you characterize the “abortion is a sacrament” type folks? Or their cousins, down to “oh, but birth control is a basic human right!”?

  • In response to your questions I would say they are in great need of prayers.
    They do not share my views, nor do they share the Catholic Churches view point.

  • I’d be more willing to be generous if I wasn’t a victim of the “just pray for them” notion.

    There’s a reason a huge number of folks– weekly church goers, put the kids through CCD, youth group and weekly catechism classes– don’t know that IVF and contraception are against Church teaching, much less WHY that would be so.

  • “Foxfier helped me understand an important distinction relating to forgiveness today. I’m in her debt.”
    Philip, you threw in the towel too soon. Foxfier is wrong, and you would have been better served turning to the Catechism and to the Bible. (Both commenters at Catholic Answers disagreed with Staple’s analysis, by the way.) Thus:
    ~~~~
    V. “AND FORGIVE US OUR TRESPASSES, AS WE FORGIVE THOSE WHO TRESPASS AGAINST US”
    2838 This petition is astonishing. If it consisted only of the first phrase, “And forgive us our trespasses,” it might have been included, implicitly, in the first three petitions of the Lord’s Prayer, since Christ’s sacrifice is “that sins may be forgiven.” But, according to the second phrase, our petition will not be heard unless we have first met a strict requirement. …
    “AND FORGIVE US OUR TRESPASSES…”
    2840 Now – and this is daunting – this outpouring of mercy cannot penetrate our hearts as long as we have not forgiven those who have trespassed against us. Love, like the Body of Christ, is indivisible; we cannot love the God we cannot see if we do not love the brother or sister we do see. In refusing to forgive our brothers and sisters, our hearts are closed and their hardness makes them impervious to the Father’s merciful love; but in confessing our sins, our hearts are opened to his grace.
    “. .. AS WE FORGIVE THOSE WHO TRESPASS AGAINST US”
    2844 Christian prayer extends to the forgiveness of enemies, transfiguring the disciple by configuring him to his Master. Forgiveness is a high-point of Christian prayer; only hearts attuned to God’s compassion can receive the gift of prayer. Forgiveness also bears witness that, in our world, love is stronger than sin.
    ~~~
    Compare that selection (especially at 2840) with what Foxfier wrote: “Part of the problem with a discussion about forgiveness is the assumption that if you haven’t forgiven, you’re actively holding the wrong to your chest and polishing it.”
    .
    Can we forgive an enemy who may yet sin against us again? Ask yourself, can we receive forgiveness even if we are uncertain of our own heart? Let’s argue about it, let’s go to the Catechism:
    ~~~
    2091 The first commandment is also concerned with sins against hope, namely, despair and presumption:
    By despair, man ceases to hope for his personal salvation from God, for help in attaining it or for the forgiveness of his sins. Despair is contrary to God’s goodness, to his justice – for the Lord is faithful to his promises – and to his mercy.
    ~~~
    It is precisely because you can be forgiven for what you did in the past in spite of what temptations may lead you astray in the future, you must forgive those who did you wrong in the past in spite of what you think they may do in their future.

  • Spambot-
    Please bother to address the points made in the Catholic Answers post, rather than going free-form on the Lord’s Prayer.
    1. We are not called to go beyond what God himself does when it comes to forgiveness. Many Christians believe with Robert that they are obliged to forgive even those who are not in the least bit sorry for their offenses against them. And on the surface this sounds really . . . Christian. But is it true? God himself doesn’t do it. He only forgives those who repent of their sins. II Cor. 7:10 says, “[G]odly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation.” I John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he . . . will forgive our sins.”

    Our Lord obviously has not and will not forgive the souls in hell right now for the simple reason that they did not ask for forgiveness. This seems as clear as clear can be. The question is, are we required to do more than God does when it comes to forgiveness?

    Jesus seems to answer this question for us in Luke 17:3-4:

    [I]f your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him; and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.

    According to this text, and as we would suspect, Jesus requires his followers to forgive only those who are sorry for their offenses, just as God does. And this only make sense. Colossians 3:13 says we are to called to forgive each other “as the Lord has forgiven [us].”

  • We are told that anything will be forgiven if we just ask; that does not mean that we must forgive those who do not ask.

  • The sin against hope is to believe that we have done something that cannot be forgiven– not that we don’t assume we’re forgiven for every wrong we do.

  • I don’t care how Merriam-Webster or any other popular dictionary defines slander. My undergrad law books define slander as spoken defamation, and libel as written defamation. Defamation is the generic term for both. So if I or anyone here perpetrated defamation, then we perpetrated libel, because we wrote it and did not say it.

    But I really wasn’t trying to be picky, I was quoting a funny line from the Spiderman 2 movie. Apparently I can’t even be funny around here.

  • OK, Foxfier, I’m starting to get a bit of your position.

    It seems to me that you are in effect rearguing the famous conversation between Abraham and God. “Would you spare the city [of Sodom] if there were 45 righteous in it?” “Yes, I will spare it” Etc. You an I both know that there are millions of decent righteous people in our country, and many in other Western lands. Far more than 45. And there are millions more who are weak but admire the righteous. I get it.

    If I had intended to slander these people that means I would have intended to slander the people I love most, family and friends alike. Do you really think I wanted to do that?

    No. I was not criticizing our society in its entirety, unto the last individual. Not my intention. I was criticizing what it is on balance, and I believe that on balance we are the minority now. I really do believe that, with God’s help, we can turn it around. What I also believe is that the die is cast and that without God’s help we will not turn it around. Will God help us? I don’t know, and I’m not going to presume anything one way or the other. I dare not presume.

    That is what I really believe. I hope that its good enough for you.

  • My opinion on forgiving: in general, I think Christians should forgive people who are unrepentant. The one exception is when the very act of forgiveness is seen by the unrepentant as validation that they were right in the first place. I’ve seen that dynamic firsthand, and it turns a commandment to Christians into the enabling of sin. I think in that situation it can be better to withhold forgiveness with an explanation as to why. Perhaps that is why we are told to forgive “seventy times seven” times: it may take nearly that number to prove that an enabling dynamic is underway.

  • Thanks Spambot3049 for your thoughts.
    Many helpful brothers and sisters in Christ frequent this site. Blessings to you. Good night. 🙂

  • I don’t care how Merriam-Webster or any other popular dictionary defines slander. My undergrad law books define slander as spoken defamation, and libel as written defamation.

    It may be a shock, but common use isn’t legal definition; the legal definition is the third down on meaning of the word, so acting like that’s the only meaning is foolish.

    You’re welcome to your views, but that doesn’t make them any more factual than when you were using assertion as the sole basis of claims.
    ******
    t seems to me that you are in effect rearguing the famous conversation between Abraham and God. “Would you spare the city [of Sodom] if there were 45 righteous in it?” “Yes, I will spare it”
    One must wonder exactly how few folks you think were in Sodom for that to be the parallel that comes to mind for a half to a third of the population.

  • Foxfier wrote, “God himself doesn’t do it. He only forgives those who repent of their sins.”

    That is true, but God Himself produces that repentance in the first place. As St Augustine, the Doctor of Grace, says, “the effectiveness of God’s mercy cannot be in the power of man to frustrate, if he will have none of it. If God wills to have mercy on men, he can call them in a way that is suited to them, so that they will be moved to understand and to follow.” He also says, “Who would dare to affirm that God has no method of calling whereby even Esau might have applied his mind and yoked his will to the faith in which Jacob was justified? But if the obstinacy of the will can be such that the mind’s aversion from all modes of calling becomes hardened, the question is whether that very hardening does not come from some divine penalty, as if God abandons a man by not calling him in the way in which he might be moved to faith. Who would dare to affirm that the Omnipotent lacked a method of persuading even Esau to believe?” (Ad Simplicianum 13-14) That is why scripture says, “I will have mercy on whom I will, and I will be merciful to whom it shall please Me” (Exod. 33:19).

    The Council of Toucy (PL, CXXVI, 123) explains the text, “Whatsoever the Lord hath pleased he hath done, in heaven, in earth, in the sea, and in all the deeps.” (Ps 134:6) in this way: “For nothing is done in heaven or on earth, except what God either graciously does Himself or permits to be done, in His justice.” That is to say, no good, here and now, in this man rather than in another, comes about unless God Himself graciously wills and accomplishes it, and no evil, here and now, in this man rather than another, comes about unless God Himself justly permits it to be done.

    In other words, God first (in the order of causality, not of time) wills to forgive a person’s sins and then He efficaciously wills that that person shall repent of them. That is why St Paul teaches, “So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.” (Rom 9:16)

  • N o L o v e

    N o C h r i s t

    But if you truly know Christ you will know love. Is it ego that fuels the will to refuse extending an arm of goodwill?
    As it pertains to this thread.

  • How is it goodwill to “forgive” someone who is not repentant? Are you claiming we should be more loving than God? Have more good will than Christ?

    God wants people to repent and be forgiven. Himself doesn’t try to skip the other person being a willing party– we have to choose to accept it.

    There is a major difference between being willing to forgive– offering forgiveness– and trying to force it on someone.

  • I’m a day late and a dollar short but I thought I’d post these lines from “A Man for all Seasons” which seem apropos in light of Gov. Brewers actions:
    Sir Thomas More: [More has been condemned to death, and now for the first time breaks his years-long adamant silence on Henry VIII’s divorce of Queen Catherine to marry Ann Boleyn] Since the Court has determined to condemn me, God knoweth how, I will now discharge my mind concerning the indictment and the King’s title. The indictment is grounded in an act of Parliament which is directly repugnant to the law of God, and his Holy Church, the Supreme Government of which no temporal person may by any law presume to take upon him. This was granted by the mouth of our Savior, Christ himself, to Saint Peter and the Bishops of Rome whilst He lived and was personally present here on earth. It is, therefore, insufficient in law to charge any Christian to obey it. And more to this, the immunity of the Church is promised both in Magna Carta and in the king’s own coronation oath
    [Cromwell calls More ‘malicious’]
    Sir Thomas More: … Not so. I am the king’s true subject, and I pray for him and all the realm. I do none harm. I say none harm. I think none harm. And if this be not enough to keep a man alive, then in good faith, I long not to live. Nevertheless, it is not for the Supremacy that you have sought my blood, but because I would not bend to the marriage!
    Sir Thomas More: When a man takes an oath, he’s holding his own self in his own hands like water, and if he opens his fingers then, he needn’t hope to find himself again.
    The Duke of Norfolk: Oh confound all this. I’m not a scholar, I don’t know whether the marriage was lawful or not but dammit, Thomas, look at these names! Why can’t you do as I did and come with us, for fellowship!
    Sir Thomas More: And when we die, and you are sent to heaven for doing your conscience, and I am sent to hell for not doing mine, will you come with me, for fellowship?

  • Goodwill is lacking from you sister, and atleast TomD made an effort. You decided to belittle it.

    See you in the confessional line Foxier.

  • “God wants people to repent and be forgiven. Himself doesn’t try to skip the other person being a willing party– we have to choose to accept it.”

    Why would He, seeing that He produces that will in them – Proverbs 8:35 For my issues are the issues of life, and in them volition is prepared from the Lord.

  • Foxfier,
    “How is it goodwill to “forgive” someone who is not repentant?”
    Suppose a commentor at a blog offended you and she was blocked from further comments. How would you know that she later repented? Suppose your favorite park were vandalized and you were hurt by the offense. Even the vandal does not know precisely who his victims are and could never reach out to you to ask your forgiveness. Would you carry around an unforgiving heart for the rest of your life?
    People who forgive me before I am repentant, perhaps even before I am able to acknowledge to myself that I did wrong, free themselves of the burden of unforgiveness and in doing so, offer a prayer on my behalf.
    .
    “Please bother to address the points made in the Catholic Answers post, rather than going free-form on the Lord’s Prayer.”
    The two commentors there at Catholic Answers could do a better job than I, but I will give it a try. (The “free-form on the Lord’s Prayer” was quoted from the Catholic Catechism. The specific section numbers are provided in my comment for reference.)
    “Our Lord obviously has not and will not forgive the souls in hell right now for the simple reason that they did not ask for forgiveness. This seems as clear as clear can be.”
    Whether or not a person who harmed me is going to Hell is something I cannot know. The harm done to may or may not have been intentional. The person doing the harm may or may not have had the capacity to understand he is doing wrong. As scripture indicates, judgment on who will go to Hell is for God alone. We all deserve Hell, but we are saved by our faith, and if we love God, then we extend our love to others.
    .
    FWIW, I maintain (with little proof to offer) that forgiving someone in exchange for something else of value (such as a request for forgiveness) can be explained by evolutionary science alone with no need for supernatural grace. (I suspect the Freedom From Religion Foundation would support that view. cf.
    http://ffrf.org/publications/freethought-today/item/17148-stages-of-moral-development )
    Unconditional forgiveness is by the grace of God.

  • “People who forgive me before I am repentant, perhaps even before I am able to acknowledge to myself that I did wrong, free themselves of the burden of unforgiveness and in doing so, offer a prayer on my behalf.”

    I think that such easy forgiveness, without a request for it, actually encourages people to engage in cost free bad behavior and therefore harms them spiritually. Imagine if the father in the parable of the prodigal son had assured him while he was engaging in his debauchery that he always could come home, because Daddy forgave him no matter what he did. The prodigal then would never have had brought home to him the deadliness of his sins and the necessity for repentance and amendment of life. In our age of cheap grace, we do not understand repentance, amendment and forgiveness. We recall Christ’s forgiveness of the woman caught in adultery, but his admonition to her to go and sin no more is utterly forgotten. I have had people accused of crimes tell me that since God had forgiven them, why couldn’t every one else. In our time we confuse forgiveness with amnesia and amnesty.

  • Philip-
    A predictable dark side to the idea of unilateral forgiveness; not doing what the supporters want lets them pronounce on the state of your soul.
    Conflating love with forgiveness is not just a bad idea, it’s dangerous; you either pretend that someone did nothing wrong, or you bleach forgiveness into nothing.
    There is nothing promoting another’s good about agreeing with the false idea that I am contracepting and aborting my children out of existence, nor in apologizing for someone’s assumption of malice in a misunderstood metaphor.

    Michael-
    following that logic, God wills people into hell, rather than it being a result of their refusing the available grace. He gives us the ability to choose– it’s up to us to make the choice.
    http://www.catholic.com/blog/tim-staples/to-forgive-or-not-to-forgive-%E2%80%94-that-is-the-question
    Catholic Answers has a nice explanation; anything I tried would be an inferior paraphrasing.

  • Would you carry around an unforgiving heart for the rest of your life?

    “Unforgiving” means “unwilling to forgive,” not “hasn’t had the opportunity to forgive.”

    “Our Lord obviously has not and will not forgive the souls in hell right now for the simple reason that they did not ask for forgiveness. This seems as clear as clear can be.” Whether or not a person who harmed me is going to Hell is something I cannot know.

    It is establishing a standard of comparison, not saying those who harmed you is going to hell.
    By your formula for “unconditional,” God Himself doesn’t offer unconditional forgiveness.

  • 982 There is no offense, however serious, that the Church cannot forgive. “There is no one, however wicked and guilty, who may not confidently hope for forgiveness, provided his repentance is honest. Christ who died for all men desires that in his Church the gates of forgiveness should always be open to anyone who turns away from sin
    http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p123a10.htm

  • Thank you Foxfier.

    I obviously have had difficulty with this.

    My snide remark about seeing you in the confessional line was absent of goodwill. Jesus said he desired mercy not sacrifice when the Pharisees complained about His eating with sinners and publicans. Matt.9:13.
    The mercy you give will be the mercy you receive…yet you and the faithful witnesses responding to this thread have felled some scales from my eyes.

    Thank you. All.

  • St. Therese the lil’ flower has much to say about Love and forgiveness.

    She entered in as I have been rereading the many good supporting views as you have given. In the Story of a Soul, she forgives and even takes blame for injustices she didn’t commit. As you can see, not all off the scales have fallen off.

    She strove for the Highest good not to be “above Christ”, but to give Christ the absolute all of her being. She succeed, no?

    There’s a search for truth here. I don’t believe it is my wanting to be right, rather I wish to know how love and forgiveness must be separate. I said must, because your valid points in this discussion point to this end. Was the lil’ flower wrong? I have her Story of a Soul.
    I’ll open it up for a second read.

  • I don’t believe it is my wanting to be right, rather I wish to know how love and forgiveness must be separate.

    Because they are different (but related) things. Himself said in Matt 9, it’s the sick that need doctor. You don’t make someone well by keeping them away from a doctor, but you don’t make them well by just visiting him, either. There has to be a change from sickness to health. “Go forth and sin no more,” etc. The wronging is the sickness, and it’s not fixed by pretending it’s not there.

    We offer the forgiveness because we love– “wish the good of”– the person who did wrong.

    As Donald mentioned, we can look at the wandering son– would it have done him any good if his father had kept shoveling money to him? Or, without a change, would it have been destroying him?

    If you wish the good of someone, will you support their destructive behavior, or tell them they should stop?

  • Foxfier.
    I do understand the concept of enabling behavior and the prolonged agony the party suffers.

    As I mentioned, I’m going to read the lil’ flowers story again, and closely observe the intent and application of her love of neighbor and trust in Jesus.

    Each of the commentators examples are driving home the important fact that one must ask for forgiveness, and truly be sincere in the asking. I do get it…even though admittedly I am thick up stairs. 🙂

    I might find something in St. Theresa’s book that I had misinterpreted, but none the less I’ll be at peace knowing that you truly have my interests in mind.
    That I am able to serve my neighbors in harmony with the truth.
    Thanks once more.

  • “[F]ollowing that logic, God wills people into hell, rather than it being a result of their refusing the available grace”

    No, that is the heresy of Calvin. St Augustine teaches that, after the fall of Adam, God wanted to save some, through an absolute will based on his mercy alone, entirely pure and gratuitous, leaving the other part in the state of damnation in which it was, and in which he could justly have left the whole. Nevertheless, God does not command the impossible, and grants even to those who do not actually observe His commandments the power of observing them. Theologians call this grace truly but merely sufficient: “truly” because it really confers the power; “merely” because, through the fault of the will, it fails in its effect, with respect to which it is said to be inefficacious, but sufficient.

    St Thomas teaches that “Since the love of God is the cause of the goodness of things, no one would be better than another if God did not will a greater good to one than to another.” [ST Ia, q. 20, a. 3] Now, it is evident that the man who, in fact, observes the commandments is better than the one who is able to do so but actually does not. Therefore he who keeps the commandments is more beloved and assisted. In short, God loves that man more to whom He grants that he keep the commandments than another in whom He permits sin. This theologians call “efficacious grace.” St Paul says, “For God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13).

  • Michael-
    No, that is the heresy of Calvin.

    Which is why I objected.

    Philip-
    I’m trying. (Mandatory joke: in more ways than one.)
    Rephrasing the same thing in different ways sometimes works….
    Situation isn’t helped by the gap between what one says and another hears; a lot of popular stuff seems to use “forgive” to mean “I don’t hate you.”

    I’d guess that the Little Flower reacted to outside things, rather than it being about herself. Being willing to forgive. (And the related “let go of the anger” thing.)

  • *ahem* Returning once again to our original topic… here’s an interesting “Dear Abby” letter I saw posted online just a few minutes ago:

    http://news.yahoo.com/animal-lover-appalled-camouflage-wedding-050112316.html

    “DEAR ABBY: My nephew is getting married next year. I was very excited because I love him and I’m a baker. I had planned on making the groom’s cake as I did for his brother’s and sister’s weddings. The problem is, they have decided on a hunting theme for their wedding — including a camouflage wedding dress for the bride.

    “Abby, I am an animal-rights activist. I’m against any form of hunting. I am also involved with several animal-protection groups. My nephew and his fiancee know how hard I work for animal rights — just the thought of a hunting theme for a wedding makes me ill.

    “I don’t even want to attend, let alone make a cake. What can I do so there will be no hurt feelings if I don’t want to attend or participate? — BAKER IN THE MIDWEST

    “DEAR BAKER: The theme for your nephew’s wedding is certainly unique. The concept of a camouflage wedding dress is practical because the dress can be worn after the nuptials, which isn’t the case with many bridal gowns.

    “Feeling as strongly as you do about not attending, write the happy couple a warm letter wishing them a lifetime of happiness together and include a nice wedding gift — I’m sure there will be no hurt feelings.”

    Since the letter writer describes herself (to make things simpler I’m going to assume she’s female) as a baker, implying that she does it for a living, I’d love to know whether she’s ever refused to bake cakes for hunting/camo themed weddings before and if so, could the rejected couple now sue her for said refusal.


  • Remember how bothered the Jews were at the claim of Jesus to forgive sins, believing that no human could forgive sin.of course they didn’t know Jesus Is Lord.
    I think on a human level we can forgive sin if by that we mean:
    Excusing a fault or an offense; pardon.
    renouncing anger or resentment against. Or absolving from payment of (a debt, for example). (Dictionary meaning) even if the other person is not sorry nor asks for forgiveness . We can still ignore or forget it of we want to. But we can do nothing about the lingering effects of sin, already committed, nor about the guilt still retained by the sinner. We can forgive, let it go, forget about it, but we can’t take away the persons guilt – even if we were to decide to continue to prosecute the issue. Only God can deal with that, perhaps in purgatory also our continued unforgiving attitude doesn’t increase his guilt- has no effect but to keep us tied up. Forgiving is a benefit to the forgiver.
    We don’t have to worry about “cheap grace” since grace giving is not ours to do. God will balance the books.

  • Since the letter writer describes herself (to make things simpler I’m going to assume she’s female) as a baker, implying that she does it for a living, I’d love to know whether she’s ever refused to bake cakes for hunting/camo themed weddings before and if so, could the rejected couple now sue her for said refusal.

    I’d guess yes, and no. 😀

  • Elaine Krewer

    Baking is not a “common calling,” something hitherto confined to innkeepers and common carriers (and millers, where the land is thirled or adstricted to a particular mill).

    Accordingly, a refusal would only be actionable, if the parties belonged to a “protected class.” Under the EU directives,: “Discrimination comprises any distinction applied between natural persons by reason of their origin, sex, family situation, physical appearance or patronymic, state of health, handicap, genetic characteristics, sexual morals or orientation, age, political opinions, union activities, or their membership or non-membership, true or supposed, of a given ethnic group, nation, race or religion. Discrimination also comprises any distinction applied between legal persons by reason of the origin, sex, family situation, physical appearance or patronymic, state of health, handicap, genetic characteristics, sexual morals or orientation, age, political opinions, union activities, membership or non-membership, true or supposed, of a given ethnic group, nation, race or religion of one or more members of these legal persons.”

    Wide as this is, it would not appear to include membership of a hunt (“the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable” as Oscar Wilde called them, which, even as a joint MFH myself, I confess to finding amusing) I suppose it could be argued that someone who rides to hounds in camouflage (!) is suffering from a mental handicap and so protected, but that seems pretty thin.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour. This issue is confused by conflating persons and their vices. If the baker was told, and she knew, that her cake was to be used to support and encourage so-called gay-marriage, she is free to refuse, as if she was told her cake or work is going to be used to poison others. Discriminating against and prosecuting vice and crime is the duty of the state. As a citizen, all persons are called to protect our future generations, our constitutional posterity, and “to secure the Blessing of Liberty to ourselves and our (constitutional ) posterity”…from The Preamble
    Which reminds me…in Peter Pan, Captain Hook bakes a poison “green” cake to poison Wendy….no, not Wendy Davis… Wendy Darling.

  • Anzlyne: “Forgiving is a benefit to the forgiver.” Jesus took the whole benefit.

Stupid Meme: Libertarianism & “Gay Marriage”

Wednesday, September 26, AD 2012

One of the more annoying memes I am often confronted with is the automatic assumption that libertarians must be for “gay marriage.”I can understand why some people automatically assume such things in good faith, but I can also tell when the leftist media is attempting to exploit an apparent rift between libertarians and conservatives on the right. Whenever I read somewhere that there may be tension between different wings of the American right on an issue such as “gay marriage”, it is almost never a conservative or a libertarian writing it.

Is it consistent with libertarianism to be an uncritical and loud advocate of “gay marriage”? In my view, the answer is no. In fact, it is more consistent with libertarianism, at least in the current political climate and given the way the issue is currently framed, to be opposed to the “marriage equality” movement. The word “equality” ought to be the first indication to a libertarian that something may be amiss, since egalitarian movements are often statist, sometimes outright totalitarian movements that seek to achieve an ideal of equality by sheer force. Communism is the most obvious example, but what feminist and certain racial groups have achieved on college campuses is only a microcosm of what they would like to see in society at large: free speech utterly silenced, opposing views ostracized, careers denied or ruined over the utterance of a heterodox opinion (just view the archives of The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education for countless examples). To some extent this already does happen in society at large, but only selectively – for now.

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24 Responses to Stupid Meme: Libertarianism & “Gay Marriage”

  • Thank you for your post. Re-define. To call something that isn’t is. What will be the next grab for power. Pedophiles are “minor attracted people”. Life site .com posted a disturbing piece coming out of Germany regarding the move to lower children’s consent requirements, (age). Placing more children in harms way of the M.A.P.
    When will this stop? It seems to me as God is pushed out of the public square, the old foe slithers in. “What’s foul is fair…and what’s fair is foul.” Old Bill saw it coming.

  • Mother and Father becomes Parent A and Parent B.

    only a bureaucratic detail. only. mmhmm

  • Pingback: Dating Subsidiarity Archbishop John Myers Same-Sex Marriage | Big Pulpit
  • Thank you, Bonchamps, for a discerning essay. I am in close agreement with much of what you’ve written here, especially in the third and fourth paragraphs.

    Among some self-identified libertarians in the blogosphere, “the opinion that the state ought to have nothing to say at all about marriage” has great initial appeal. But who was it who said that for every difficult problem there is a solution that is simple, obvious and wrong? And wrong it is; a libertarian should be quick to see that upon considering what individuals have to say about marriage.

    Eventually people will laugh at attempts by judges and legislators to make same-sex sham marriages equivalent to real marriages just as we laugh at stories of attempts to legislate pi = 3.

  • The great 19th century Catholic historian, Lord Acton, pointed out on many occasions that the passion for civic equality and the hatred of noble and clerical privilege is usually accompanied by a tolerance of despotism, whether the absolutism of a Napoléon (whose regime was the consummation of the Revolution, not its reversal) or the tyranny of the majority.

    The egalitarian likes strong government, believing, as Acton notes, “Government must not be arbitrary, but it must be powerful enough to repress arbitrary action in others. If the supreme power is needlessly limited, the secondary powers will run riot and oppress. Its supremacy will bear no check.” Hence, “The modern theory… which has swept away every authority except that of the State, and has made the sovereign power irresistible by multiplying those who share it.”

  • I think you are neglecting two aspects of this:

    1. Civil marriage is a set of voluntarily assumed obligations. It is also an official delineation of social boundaries as are the property deeds in the county clerk’s office or copyrights registered at the Library of Congress. That delineation guides the resolution of disputes that inevitably arise in a society between private parties. The default mode of libertarian social thought is to conceive of a sharp delineation of state and society in which the latter is put upon by blunderbusses employed in the former. This sort of discourse is found in the writings of people who are critics of license (see William L. Anderson and Joseph Sobran) as those who are celebrants of it. In this mode of thought, the act of civil marriage is reducible to the issuance of a license and the refusal to do so is an unacceptable imposition on the autonomous will of Adam and Steve. That is an adolescent way of looking at the world, but what do you expect?

    2. Advocacy of these stupid burlesques is now a social and cultural marker in certain age cohorts. You do not really believe Reason‘s constituency is composed of people who do not care if they are confounded with evangelicals, do you?

  • With the moving words:

    “Champions of individual liberty should stand on the side of private property rights and religious liberty, and not on the side of those who are quite obviously attempting to use the coercive power of the state to impose their moral vision on the rest of America.”

    You have managed to more eloquently express the libertarian argument against anti-“gay marriage” legislation than you have defended yourself from what appears to be an entirely invented accusation that all libertarians must think and act the same.

    The larger issue of this meme – the concept that all libertarians must agree on gay marriage – well, you are correct there. You don’t have to support it.

    It will, however, make you less of a libertarian in the eyes of many. Take solace, however, as you can simply count it among the dozens of areas where the Christian faith and libertarian ideals do not meet eye-to-eye in the real world.

  • know what? I guess I am so naive as to think about this. If God would have wanted this kind of lifestyle there would be no proliferation of the human race. Without the act of procreation what is the point of anything? Everyway I turn I am learning of the homosexuals in my family. I love them as God loves them, but I cannot nor will I condone this behavior. No one will confront it in this Catholic family. Catholic mothers and fathers sisters and brothers. We are forced to, in every family gathering to put up with behavior that gags me. Married couples at these gatherings are not blatantly affectionate. It almost seems like an assult, or “dare ya” attitude. My grandchildren are exposed non stop. Please God. I don’t care what political direction you take this is, and will be disaster on our race. Without respect for marriage and procreation we are truly lost.

  • There are a number of problems with the essay that I take issue with. You brought up the situation with the photography studio in New Mexico as a warning about the dangers of marriage equality. Only problem is, New Mexico doesn’t allow same-sex marriage. The claim against the owner was one of discrimination in public services, not marriage. The state ruled that businesses that offer services to the public cannot discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation (amongst other criteria). Just a reminder, a photography studio is not a church, and people that are religious “chose” to be religious. They weren’t born that way. So for your position to be valid, one would have to argue that ANY choice people make in their lives can be used to justify discriminating against anyone that they want. In a secular society, this is unacceptable. Choosing to become religious does not give you a “free pass” to enforce your religious ideology on the rest of society. Don’t want to provide service to ALL of society? Then don’t open a business in the public sphere. Pretty simple philosophy, huh?

    I also find it interesting that you believe the word “equality” should bring up red flags. The reality is that most states and our government have gone out of their way to foster discriminatory laws aimed solely at gay Americans, making sure that gay people will never be considered equal under the law. (Which is what this is about. Not legal forms.) This is the antithesis of what America represents: freedom, liberty and equality all citizens. Religion cannot be allow to override those ideals. In a secular society, one should ask themselves why our government is enforcing an obvious religious ideology on its own citizens without a rational “legal” basis. Our government shouldn’t be promoting ANY type of religious ideology. When Congress passed the extremely unconstitutional DOMA law, their “rational basis” was that DOMA will help ensure that straight couples will procreate responsibly. Perhaps you can explain how preventing gay couples from getting married will help straight couples be more responsible when having sex? Are the gay couples going to provide condoms to all those straight couples? Are straight couples going to get married in greater numbers because they know that gay couples can’t get married? By any stretch of the imagination, the rationale behind DOMA was drenched in anti-gay animus (based on religious beliefs) and nothing else. These people simply didn’t want to treat gay people as equal members of society. Their position is fundamentally wrong and inherently immoral.

    By the way, the public doesn’t have the final say when it comes to passing laws, the Constitution does. Just because a majority of people vote for something (the express wishes of the voters) does not make them right, or their decision just or legal. Slavery ring a bell? How about the subordination of women? Bans on interracial marriage? People justified all sorts of bigotry throughout our history… and used the Bible to support their position. Enforcing your religious beliefs into our laws pushes us one step closer to becoming a Christian theocracy. Our Founding Fathers escaped religious tyranny. Our society cannot allow that to ever happen here.

  • I’ve pointed this out to the Libertarians on Ricochet who push for homosexual marriage. Their response is the same as about abortion– they make excuses that the thing consistent with their stated philosophy gives the government too much power, and then promote expanding that power, on the stated theory that if anybody can do it, EVERYONE should be able to do it.

    Then, if you pay attention to what college PotLibertarians do and point it out as an example of Libertarianism, they respond it’s inconsistent with their theory– and when you point out that their stance on killing humans up to a set stage of development is also inconsistent, or forcing others to support the lifestyle choice of two adults, you’re suddenly “just being nasty.”

    Can’t win. Either you pay attention to the theory of Libertarianism but aren’t allowed to call them on inconsistencies like promoting expanding gov’t power for their pet views, or you pay attention to what MOST Libertarians one meets think, and you’re accused of lying. For noticing that Ronulans and Liberaltarians (PotLibertarians that somehow always manage to vote straight Dem tickets, and love their college freebies) exist in real life. *headdesk*

  • What is far more disturbing to me, and most moral conservatives, is that libertarians do not support morality. At all. Libertine freedom is the enemy of morality- it is the right to sin. Real moral conservatives, at least Catholic ones, are authoritarian monarchists: They support the Kingship of Jesus Christ and the rule of his Vicar the Pope in all matters of faith and morals. Morality for moral conservatives IS objective; personal likes and dislikes do not change what is right and wrong the way it does for libertarians.

    THAT is why you see people thinking libertarians will support gay marriage, the way libertarians support the right of women to choose abortion, and the right of people to destroy their own lives and the lives of their families with drugs- because at the base, the false liberty of the right to sin is the cause.

  • Igel,

    “You have managed to more eloquently express the libertarian argument against anti-”gay marriage” legislation than you have defended yourself from what appears to be an entirely invented accusation that all libertarians must think and act the same.”

    Entirely invented? Gee thanks. I guess you’ve never read… anything at all. Really? You’ve never come across the standard line, usually from some left of center pundit, that conservatives and libertarians are necessarily divided on the issue of gay marriage? Pundits and commentators make broad and stupid generalizations all the time, especially when it serves their purposes. In this case, the purpose is to deepen the rifts on the right.

    What you call “anti-gay marriage legislation” is NOT an attempt to use the coercive authority of the state to impose a moral vision on America. People who think it is simply have not thought the issue through, and are reacting with pure emotion and irrationality. It is a response to the aggressive and 100% statist “marriage equality” movement. A ban on so-called “gay marriage” doesn’t infringe upon anyone’s legitimate individual rights (is there a natural right, now, to have your romantic preference recognized by the state as a “marriage”? When did this happen?)

    The push FOR “gay marriage”, on the other hand, is an attempt to force private property owners and government institutions to recognize a lifestyle choice as morally valid.

    A libertarian who isn’t opposed to that is either an ignorant fool who knows nothing about the foundations of his own philosophy, or a total fraud who ought to be cast into political outer darkness.

  • Fox,

    I guess I came to my quasi-libertarianism (I hesitate to identify fully with any label other than “Catholic”) through Ron Paul, Murray Rothbard, F.A. Hayek, Judge Napolitano (a trad Catholic like me) and the Austrian school, which offers clear moral reasoning on every issue, even if I don’t agree with it 100% of the time. Of course this is a subset of a broader school of thought. Of course there are other factions within libertarianism. But the kind of people you describe sound like brain-dead fools.

    Ted,

    I don’t think this statement:

    “What is far more disturbing to me, and most moral conservatives, is that libertarians do not support morality.”

    Is fair at all. All of the names I mentioned above are extremely supportive of morality, and are in fact among the most morally conscious thinkers I’ve ever read.

    Of course libertarianism proposes, basically, that individuals ought to have the right to do as they please as long as they don’t infringe upon the basic rights of another person. But then you have Paul, Napolitano, and other very high profile libertarians who argue forcefully that abortion does exactly that, and so does this “marriage equality” movement. Abortion robs a human being of their right to life, and so-called “marriage equality” robs Christians and other individuals who are morally opposed to participating in “gay marriages” of their religious liberty and their private property rights.

    It is absolutely shocking to me that the average libertarian doesn’t see this.

  • Of course this is a subset of a broader school of thought. Of course there are other factions within libertarianism. But the kind of people you describe sound like brain-dead fools.

    They’re usually in college. Mentally, if not still physically. That’d make at very least the fools part mostly redundant…..

    To be more fair, I think they’re usually male liberals who got burnt or at least noticed the damage caused by extreme feminism, and so react by being exactly the opposite…but still on left-wing foundations. Part of why it usually looks like conservatism built by liberals.
    If you don’t have a foundation, you MIGHT be able to build some things; say, anti-abortion, anti-slavery, anti-theft, everything has to be a freely entered agreement. Which causes issues when folks actually do what they desire, and a third party becomes involved involuntarily, especially if their involvement puts a demand on the initial folks involved.

    Being pro-abortion and denouncement of forced child support as exploitation of the guy who willingly had sex in the first place is against the stated principles, but it’s very emotionally tempting if you don’t have a good bedrock.

  • David in Houston,

    Thanks for your extensive comments. I will address what I think are the most relevant parts.

    “The state ruled that businesses that offer services to the public cannot discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation (amongst other criteria).”

    The business didn’t discriminate “on the basis of sexual orientation.” The test of such discrimination would be whether the business refused service to a homosexual individual because they were homosexual. That is manifestly not what happened; rather, the business morally objected to participating in a “gay marriage”, a voluntarily chosen activity. There is a world of difference between these two things.

    “So for your position to be valid, one would have to argue that ANY choice people make in their lives can be used to justify discriminating against anyone that they want. ”

    That’s more or less exactly what I believe. I believe it because of a thing called private property rights, as well as freedom of association. I believe these rights are fundamental to a free society, especially when there are a multitude of alternatives available on the free market.

    It is not the job of the state to force everyone to like each other and serve each other. It is the job of the state to protect natural rights.

    “In a secular society, this is unacceptable. Choosing to become religious does not give you a “free pass” to enforce your religious ideology on the rest of society. Don’t want to provide service to ALL of society? Then don’t open a business in the public sphere. Pretty simple philosophy, huh?”

    It’s simple, but it is also absurd. It is absurd to suggest that people with religious convictions don’t have individual rights to free exercise in their capacity as private property owners (such a notion would have been absurd to the founders as well), it is absurd to suggest that refusing service is equivalent to “enforc(ing) religious ideology on the rest of society” when the market provides many alternatives, and it is absurd to suggest that people with religious views ought to be denied freedom of association by being effectively barred from establishing religiously-oriented business.

    No one is forced to hire or shop at establishments with particular views. But freedom works both ways – no ought to be forced to serve people who are asking them to participate in or facilitate events they find morally repugnant. You shouldn’t have the right to force Christians to photograph Satanic rituals, or Jews to cater Nazi banquets, or for that matter, secular atheists to renovate churches if they don’t want to. That’s also a very simply philosophy, one that doesn’t involve forcing people to act against their convictions and doesn’t deprive anyone of an essential good or service.

    “The reality is that most states and our government have gone out of their way to foster discriminatory laws aimed solely at gay Americans, making sure that gay people will never be considered equal under the law”

    Well, this is simply false. Gays are equal under the law, as individuals. There isn’t a single right that straight people have that gays do not have. Gays can even legally marry – someone of the opposite sex, that is. Gays can, through private contract, establish anyone they choose as legal and medical power of attorney, inheritor of their estate, co-owner of their property, joint bank accounts, and so on and so forth. All they lack, and what they are not entitled to by nature or by law, is the privilege of presumption that married men and women have with regards to these legal matters. There is absolutely no injustice here.

    “In a secular society, one should ask themselves why our government is enforcing an obvious religious ideology on its own citizens without a rational “legal” basis.”

    There is a rational, secular basis for supporting traditional marriage and opposing homosexual marriage. That you’ve never come across it or, as I suspect, even looked for it, doesn’t mean a thing. But that isn’t the issue here. I am not asking the government to enforce a religious ideology, but rather to respect the rights of individuals to free exercise of religion, free speech, and private property.

    ” When Congress passed the extremely unconstitutional DOMA law, their “rational basis” was that DOMA will help ensure that straight couples will procreate responsibly. ”

    I’m not a fan of that rationale. But it is unnecessary. The key provision of DOMA is that no state be forced to recognize the validity of a “gay marriage” from a state that legally recognizes it. That is a perfectly just and fair provision that respects the sovereign rights of individual states. It does not prevent the individual states from recognizing “gay marriage” either, as we have seen. This is another illegitimate complaint.

    “By the way, the public doesn’t have the final say when it comes to passing laws, the Constitution does.”

    Have you read the 10th amendment?

    “Just because a majority of people vote for something (the express wishes of the voters) does not make them right, or their decision just or legal.”

    I agree. Sometimes, however, the majority is right. This time, they are. But in any case, it is not primarily about what the majority thinks, though I do think that is important. This is about the defense of natural individual rights to freedom of speech, religion, and private property.

    As for your comparisons to slavery and the like, the Bible was also (quite obviously, for anyone who knows their history) used by those fighting against slavery. No one complained about that as an “enforcement of religious beliefs” on the rest of the country, just like no one complains when left-wing Christians use religion to justify left-wing policies. No, it is only the socially conservative right who wants to impose religious values, only the socially conservative right who can find no “rational justification” for their policy preferences. The religious left, on the other hand, always gets a free pass.

    Finally, “marriage”, the decision to live one’s life with another person, is a CHOICE. It is not an inherited trait like skin color. Governments and individuals have a moral obligation to treat all individuals equally. They do not have a moral obligation to treat all moral choices as equally valid. If you can’t comprehend the difference, then I’m afraid we will always be enemies.

  • David in Houston said “ the public doesn’t have the final say when it comes to passing laws, the Constitution does. Just because a majority of people vote for something (the express wishes of the voters) does not make them right, or their decision just or legal.”

    But, of course, the public always have the final say; they can always amend or abolish any laws, including the Constitution. As Thomas Jefferson said, “no society can make a perpetual constitution, or even a perpetual law. The earth belongs always to the living generation. They may manage it then, and what proceeds from it, as they please, during their usufruct. They are masters too of their own persons, and consequently may govern them as they please…”

    Law is the expression of the general will, of the living, not the dead. History may instruct and warn, but cannot guide or control.

  • This is an excellent post. Thanks, Bonchamps. I wish I had the intellect to contribute something. But I am satisfied to learn where I can’t contribute.

  • Many libertarians recognize a set of principles or preexisting order that must exist to support liberty. Many others, however, are libertines who adopt libertarianism in an effort to confuse their conscience with their constantly changing, contradicting intellectual-sounding garble to support their temporal whims.

  • Also, most ‘gay marriage’ statutes have nothing to do with what the state does. Many states, before they ever introduced same-sex civil ‘unions’ or ‘marriages’, had reconciled all state-level administrative powers to be neutral to all couples. However, this was deemed insufficient. Hence, states began imposing requirements on the private organizations they regulated.
    Now some states are suing the federal government to force the federal government to accept gay marriage. Already there’s proposals to force other states accept the same sex ‘marriages’ from other states. Sooner or later, and in some small cases already relating to property and adjacent ministries, every private organization will be forced to accept and facilitate these ‘marriages’.

    It’s not an coincidence why some of the biggest heterosexual supporters of same sex marriage are the statists. They envision new powers to regulate speech, regulate custody, regulate transhumanist dreams, attack churches, harm families and then ‘help’ those impacted families. It’s not about people, it’s about the new weapons they can produce.

  • My personal position on the photographer is that I wouldn’t do business with someone that doesn’t want my business. That being said, personal feelings about someone (believing that they are immoral) is not a rational basis to discriminate against them. By the way, I can guarantee that the photographer has provided work for “immoral” straight people in the past. Especially if they’ve ever worked with people like Newt Gingrich, or other adulterers, or gamblers, or alcoholics, or any other so-called sin you can come up with. I sincerely doubt that the photographer questioned other clients to determine if they were worthy of their services. I find it more than a little hypocritical that the only criteria that Christians have for immorality (to use for the basis for discrimination) is someone’s sexual orientation — oddly enough, that’s the ONLY so-called sin that they’ll never have. Must be a coincidence, right? That’s basically the same assessment that the courts in New Mexico found. Simply choosing to become religious doesn’t give you authority to disregard laws that protect the treatment of other citizens. Did you ever notice that the only group of people that are collectively discriminating against another group of people are Christians, and not the other way around. Yet it’s the Christians that are somehow the victims in all of these stories. Funny how that works out. Yes, 80% of the populous are victims of the overwhelming power of the 3%. It truly boggles the mind.

    “Gays are equal under the law, as individuals. There isn’t a single right that straight people have that gays do not have. Gays can even legally marry – someone of the opposite sex, that is. Gays can, through private contract, establish anyone they choose as legal and medical power of attorney, inheritor of their estate, co-owner of their property, joint bank accounts, and so on and so forth. All they lack, and what they are not entitled to by nature or by law, is the privilege of presumption that married men and women have with regards to these legal matters. There is absolutely no injustice here.”

    Gay people can still be fired in 29 states, simply because they are gay. They can also be refused housing on the same basis; and apparently (based on your beliefs) they can be discriminated against by anyone that happens to be religious. Which is what, over three-quarters of the population? — If you happen to have offspring, I seriously doubt that you’d want them to marry a gay person. I’d think you want them to marry someone that they are physically attracted to, someone that they love and want to build a life with, and someone that also finds them sexually and physically attractive. That isn’t possible if the other person is gay, and vice versa. Common sense, right? It’s also a laughable argument: “I’d rather have that gay guy marry my daughter instead of that man he’s been in a relationship for 10 years.” Yeah, let’s destroy two lives just to make sure that gay people can’t legally join together. Seriously? — As for private contracts. There is no logical reason why gay couples should have to jump through legal hoops and spent time and money on something that is automatically granted to straight couples. Immoral straight couples don’t have to hire an attorney to protect their relationships, neither should so-called immoral gay couples.

    “There is a rational, secular basis for supporting traditional marriage and opposing homosexual marriage. That you’ve never come across it or, as I suspect, even looked for it, doesn’t mean a thing.”

    No. Actually there isn’t a rational secular basis to deny gay Americans the right to create a legal kinship (secular marriage) with each other. That is why conservatives want to pass a constitutional amendment to ban it. Because they know that if they don’t, our constitution will support it. If there were a rational basis, we would have definitely heard it during the Prop. 8 trial. Instead, we got inane slippery slope arguments about the threat to “traditional” marriage, and how theoretical children need a mommy and daddy — disregarding the fact that procreation has never been a requirement to getting married. I also didn’t read it in the above essay, which complains that if gay people can marry, then religious people will have a harder time discriminating against them. When put in that context (You won’t tolerate my intolerance), your position is insupportable.

    “Finally, “marriage”, the decision to live one’s life with another person, is a CHOICE. It is not an inherited trait like skin color. Governments and individuals have a moral obligation to treat all individuals equally. They do not have a moral obligation to treat all moral choices as equally valid. If you can’t comprehend the difference, then I’m afraid we will always be enemies.”

    Your position is that homosexuality is immoral, and I’m guessing you also believe it’s a choice. Sorry to say, wrong on both counts. All because you believe a 2,000 year old book says so. Sorry, but that doesn’t prove anything — in a theocratic country, perhaps. But not here. In fact, your entire belief system is built on nothing but faith. Which again means there is no proof of that assertion; and unless our government can prove that all gay people are inherently immoral and a threat to society, they have no right to discriminate against them as a group. As I said before, we do not disenfranchise straight citizens that are immoral. Straight people that have cheated on their spouses still have all of their civil rights, including the right to get divorced and remarried as many times as they want. If you can’t comprehend the obvious hypocrisy going on here, then I agree, I’m afraid we will always be enemies. Liberty and freedom for ALL Americans will always win in the end. The younger generation “comprehends” that (and literally cannot understand why gay couples can’t get married), and irrational animus directed at gay people will be as unacceptable as racism and sexism.

  • David,

    “That being said, personal feelings about someone (believing that they are immoral) is not a rational basis to discriminate against them.”

    Personal feelings can be entirely aligned with objective reasons, so your statement is fallacious.

    More importantly, it is irrelevant. The 1st and 5th amendments secure the rights of religion, speech and property, and that security does not depend in the least upon whether or not a person exercising them meets some criteria of “rationality.” The essence of a free society is that I don’t have to convince you that my beliefs meet your standard of rationality – rather, you must tolerate beliefs you personally feel to be irrational as long as they infringe upon no legitimate right of yours. Clearly these basic lessons of American law, politics and culture are utterly lost on you, which is why liberty is dying a slow death in this country.

    “By the way, I can guarantee that the photographer has provided work for “immoral” straight people in the past. ”

    This, like many of your subsequent statements, is nothing but pure speculation presented as if it were indisputable fact – and is therefore pure rubbish.

    Even if you were correct, however, it wouldn’t matter. How a person exercises their religious beliefs, provided no one’s legitimate rights are violated, is not the business of the state. If a person is inconsistent in their application of morality, that is their own personal issue, and has absolutely no bearing on whether or not they have the legal right to refuse to participate in events they deem morally objectionable. The right to refuse service isn’t rooted in intellectual consistency, but rather in the natural, individual and inalienable right to private property and the civil rights of free speech and free exercise.

    “I find it more than a little hypocritical that the only criteria that Christians have for immorality (to use for the basis for discrimination) is someone’s sexual orientation”

    This is completely untrue. I don’t know what would possess you to even assert such a thing. Homosexuality is the issue because homosexuality is what is being shoved down our throats by radical activists. But there are plenty of Christians who object to the whole gamut of immoral and anti-social behavior, and it is really quite foolish of you to suggest otherwise. Really, think before you write.

    “Yet it’s the Christians that are somehow the victims in all of these stories.”

    Yes, it is Christians who are being harassed, sued, and threatened by radical homosexual activists. There is a documented history of this abuse in the U.S. and in other countries. This is the ugly reality you are completely ignoring.

    “Yes, 80% of the populous are victims of the overwhelming power of the 3%. It truly boggles the mind.”

    It boggles the mind how someone can play so fast and loose with the facts. First of all, far fewer than 80% of American Christians actually take their stated beliefs seriously. Secondly, the gay population is estimated to be 10%, not 3%. Third, some of the most aggressive “gay rights” advocates are straight, secular, left-wing activists, especially the Hollywood types. Given that opinion polls show the nation evenly split on the issue, about 50-50, I’d say that more accurately represents the reality.

    But while the Christians have maybe a few legal defense organizations who are committed to fighting for their rights, homosexuals have the sympathy of the entire media establishment and significant sections of the political and corporate worlds as well (for every Chick-fil-A there are a dozen Targets, Oreos, Starbucks, NBCs, and so on). Just turn on a television, for the love of all that is holy – there is an endless parade of television shows praising and glamorizing the gay lifestyle, and an endless stream of anti-Christian hate, mockery, and vilification. Only the ignorant or the dishonest could possibly say otherwise. You live in a left-wing bubble.

    “Gay people can still be fired in 29 states, simply because they are gay. ”

    I believe in equal protection under the law for individuals. However, I also believe in freedom of association and private property rights. A balance must be struck, I will grant. But that means both sides meeting in the middle on this question – not one side steamrolling over the other by judicial fiat.

    “hey can also be refused housing on the same basis; and apparently (based on your beliefs) they can be discriminated against by anyone that happens to be religious.”

    Well, you’ve misrepresented my views. I stated quite clearly that the discrimination in question had nothing to do with sexual orientation, but rather with an unwillingness to participate in a freely-chosen public event that is morally objectionable. You are pathologically incapable of understanding the difference between these two things. Refusing service to an individual because of some characteristic they possess is not the same as refusing to participate in an event. You’re quite deluded if you think they are the same, an enemy of liberty, and therefore my enemy.

    “That isn’t possible if the other person is gay, and vice versa. Common sense, right?”

    Well, you’re wrong actually. It is entirely possible. It has happened throughout all of recorded history. It leads to difficulties, yes, but in societies in which family and children are duties, and not accessories, it is far easier to accomplish. Homosexuality was rampant among the Greeks in the ancient world, but so was the notion of familial duty. Homosexuality has existed in many cultures but the concept of “gay marriage” has only existed in these very recent times. That isn’t a coincidence.

    Having a sexual orientation does not make it physically impossible to perform sex acts with the sex you aren’t oriented towards. There are few men in the prison system who would ever identify as homosexuals, but there are many who routinely engage in sodomy and other sex acts with other men. The dominant males think of the more submissive males as females. The same thing happens in the other direction – there are homosexual men and women who have, can, and do engage in lifelong sexual relationships with people of the opposite sex.

    But none of this is relevant, absolutely none of it, to the issues I am concerned with.

    “There is no logical reason why gay couples should have to jump through legal hoops and spent time and money on something that is automatically granted to straight couples.”

    And it is absurd to uproot society, dramatically transform the law, and infringe upon the rights of millions of people so that a few legal hoops can be avoided. That isn’t rational or moral. Traditional marriage between one man and one woman is objectively good for society. It deserves pride of place, it deserves prestige, and all other social arrangements ought to be subordinate to it. You can call me a bigot all day long if you like for holding that position. See if I care. I think married men and women are as superior to gay couples as they are to unmarried hetero couples, to polygamists, to voluntary single parents – this is not about singling out homosexuality but rather retaining the justly deserved privileged status of traditional marriage. I’m not a radical egalitarian, I have no moral obligation to become one, and I will die to defend my right not to be one.

    “Actually there isn’t a rational secular basis to deny gay Americans the right to create a legal kinship (secular marriage) with each other. ”

    But that isn’t being denied. You can’t seriously posit the extra filing of forms to be the equivalent of a denial of “legal kinship.” It’s all right there – property, medical, legal, financial, and so on. Any two people can establish these legal relationships and no one objects to it.

    We object to the attempt to MORALLY place them on the same level as traditional marriage by hijacking the word “marriage” to describe them and forcing private property owners to render services to people they don’t consider to be married as if they were actually married.

    We object to the attempt to use the coercive power of the state to enforce a moral equivalence in the minds of the people between so-called “gay marriage” and traditional marriage.

    I just wonder if you are honest and/or intelligent enough to appreciate the distinction between these two very different things. If in the end you are just sour because I won’t recognize “gay marriage” as morally legitimate, then tough s*** – we live in a free society and you just have to deal with it. But I will make clear that I don’t object to any two individuals establishing a legal relationship that for all intents and purposes adds up to the state’s definition of a “marriage.” I will never call it marriage, and I will go to prison rather than treat a gay couple as if they were legitimately married, but I don’t object to the legal recognition of their private contracts.

    “I also didn’t read it in the above essay, which complains that if gay people can marry, then religious people will have a harder time discriminating against them. When put in that context (You won’t tolerate my intolerance), your position is insupportable.”

    No, it is completely supportable by over two centuries of American jurisprudence, the political philosophy of the founding fathers, the Bill of Rights, basic moral philosophy and common sense. I have a right to be intolerant, provided I am not violating anyone’s legitimate rights. But it isn’t even about intolerance. I can and do tolerate homosexuality, and even the existence of homosexual couples who like to pretend that they are “married.” What I refuse to do, and what any serious Christian refuses to do, is engage in, facilitate, participate in any way in what we believe to be blatantly immoral choices. We have this right under the 1st amendment. That is the “support” for my argument, or at least the beginning of it.

    “Your position is that homosexuality is immoral, and I’m guessing you also believe it’s a choice. ”

    This is part of your problem, David. Your guessing, your assuming. You think you know everything and that you have everyone figured out, and this arrogance makes your arguments absurd.

    I do not believe homosexuality is a choice. I don’t believe people are born gay either. I believe it is a psychological condition brought on by early childhood problems. I don’t believe it can be reversed or “cured”, but I do believe it is possible for a homosexual to reject the openly gay lifestyle, as it has been done throughout history.

    Homosexual acts are sinful, of course, as are many sexual acts that take place between heterosexuals. These are always choices. So, for that matter, is the decision to live as if you are married. This is quite clearly and obviously a choice. When one chooses to live as if they are married to a person of the same sex, it is blatantly immoral – and it is immoral for you or the state to attempt to force me to recognize it as something moral.

    “All because you believe a 2,000 year old book says so.”

    How far does this patronizing attitude typically get you in life? You don’t know me or what I believe. I have never once made an argument against “gay marriage” on the basis of Scripture (except to pro-gay Christians, but that’s a different matter). My primary argument is that “marriage equality” is a violent assault on basic American liberties. My secondary argument is that history and sociology clearly demonstrate the superiority of the traditional family to all other competing social arrangements.

    “As I said before, we do not disenfranchise straight citizens that are immoral.”

    What does “disenfranchise” mean to you? I don’t think I am suggesting any such thing.

    “The younger generation “comprehends” that (and literally cannot understand why gay couples can’t get married), and irrational animus directed at gay people will be as unacceptable as racism and sexism.”

    The younger generation is full of barely literate public school drones who couldn’t critically think their way out of a paper sack. It takes more than MTV platitudes and Obamaisms to understand the complicated intersection of moral, legal, and political issues underlying the “gay marriage” controversy. It is you who relies on the power of the unthinking, emotional mob to violently impose your views on others. Just look at how you make presumptions about me, how you have prejudged me and my beliefs. You’re the perfect stereotype of a lynch-mob lackey.

  • Gay people can still be fired in 29 states, simply because they are gay. They can also be refused housing on the same basis; and apparently (based on your beliefs) they can be discriminated against by anyone that happens to be religious.

    It is called ‘free association’, David. People are denied employment for all manner of reasons and denied credit and rental housing for failure to meet arbitrary metrics. They have no cause of action. In recent decades, civil liability has been manufactured which compels people to enter into contracts and other agreements they would rather not, for whatever reasons free people have. With regard to the black population (disproportionately poor, always obtrusive, and systemically abused by officialdom in 1964) there was a sort of justification for this. With sexual deviants, there is no such justification. The proliferation of ‘rights’ threatens liberty.

  • Bonchamps-
    the 10% figure was based on a highly flawed study; 3% seems to be more in line with less biased studies.
    The 10% figure is most often cited, though, especially when the activist wants to inflate his figures.

    Other than that, you’re doing great.

What Radical Gays Really Want – And Will Never, Ever Have

Friday, May 18, AD 2012

Since “gay marriage” is all the rage, especially since Biden and Obama decided to make public statements on the matter, it is virtually all I have been hearing about in my own online networks. Debates are raging, friendships are being tested, hostility is everywhere. One thing emerges out of this chaos more clearly than anything else: the gay agenda, which I define as a radical political program with the aim of legitimizing homosexuality in all spheres of human existence, is based on the hysterical repetition of outrageous lies. It is not unlike  the completely fraudulent “war on women”, a war that was supposedly declared when a number of Americans publicly resisted the idea that they ought to pay for other women’s birth control.

In the case of “gay marriage”, the big lie is that there is some desire on the part of conservatives and Christians in this country to actually deny some right, some liberty, some freedom to people who identify themselves and live as homosexuals. As abhorrent, disordered and immoral as I find the “gay lifestyle” to be, the truth is that – and here I speak for virtually every conservative Christian I know or have read – we really are not the least bit interested in micro-managing the sex-lives of our fellow citizens. We have absolutely no desire to have uniformed gendarmes kick in your bedroom doors to make sure no acts of sodomy are taking place in the middle of the night. The only thing more repugnant to me than such acts would be the prospect of becoming comfortable with the sort of routine invasions of personal privacy that would be required to ensure that no one was living out their life as a homosexual.

 

To be even more specific, to the gay couple we say: we do not care if you visit one another in the hospital. We do not care if you grant one another medical power of attorney. We do not care if you jointly own property. We do not care if you leave property for each other inherit when one of you dies. We do not care if you own a home together and live in it. We do not care if you get dressed up, rent a local hall, stage whatever sort of ceremony you like, and even refer to yourselves as “married.”

We may object, on different grounds, some secular, some religious, to your adopting children. After all, there are now other human beings in the equation- and there seems to be at least some kind of moral consensus across political lines that the interests of children do sometimes take precedence over the rights and privileges of adults. In any case, its something we can safely set aside for the moment.

To reiterate, this time specifically to the radical homosexual: on all the  issues that concern the consenting adults only, we don’t care. Of course we care in the abstract that you are leading lives of grave sin in open defiance of God, but then so do millions of “heterosexuals” who fornicate, commit adultery, use artificial contraception, sterilize themselves, and so on. Not every sin can or should be a matter for the state to concern itself with, and we are content to let God judge in these matters; but no sin, and this brings us closer to the main point here, can ever be called a virtue, no evil can ever be called a good, by any Christian with a conscience, or by any citizen who cares about the integrity of society.

You can live as you want, engage in whatever sort of contracts you like, conduct any sort of ceremonies you please. But there is one thing you cannot have, and it is the one thing you seek through this radical political agenda, these hysterical protests and complaints about Christians: our approval. It cannot possibly be about anything else, because it is really the only thing you are missing. You want to live in a world in which everyone regards what you do and how you live not only as normal, but as a positive good. And your attempts to legalize “gay marriage” are about this and this alone. It is not about “equal rights” that you already possess, it is not about the freedom to openly identify as gay, which you already have. It is about using the power of the state to force society to recognize your living arrangements and lifestyle choices as legitimate. It is about policing the thoughts and opinions of the American people. It is about sharing prestige with properly and truly married couples. It is about envy and resentment, and a deep, abiding hatred of religion in general and Christianity in particular.

Let me be blunt: your disordered lifestyles are not equal to the traditional marriage or the traditional family, which have served as the foundation of civilization since its very beginnings. You do not deserve equal prestige, and nor, for that matter, do “straight” couples who actively choose not to procreate. And you have no right to such things. You have no right to have the state give you extra benefits, tax breaks, or anything of the sort – you have no right to have your romantic choices ratified by society. You don’t have the right to go through life without being heckled or bullied, as you heckle and bully the Christians you hate, as you mock with the most disgusting outrages imaginable all that we hold sacred.

In the face of your tyranny, your bullying, your mockery, your boundless hate, we will continue to persevere.

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79 Responses to What Radical Gays Really Want – And Will Never, Ever Have

  • Well said, Bonchamps, well said indeed!

  • No elaboration necessary. Thanks.

  • You need to be more concise and make only the most sparing use of the first person pronouns.

  • “You need to be more concise and make only the most sparing use of the first person pronouns.”

    This was a really most excellent post. I don’t think any change is necessary. But we all opinions….we all know the saying. PS, I did not agree with Bonchamps’ post on Ron Paul that he wrote a while back, but in this post he is “right on the money” as it were.

  • Amen to all of it. Well done.

  • I like a lot of what you said here – pretty much every word of it. But near the end you said,

    “You don’t have the right to go through life without being heckled or bullied, as you heckle and bully the Christians you hate, as you mock with the most disgusting outrages imaginable all that we hold sacred.”

    I would hope for clarification on that. If you meant the following, then I’m fine with it:

    “You don’t have exemption from criticism, and you don’t have the right to mock Christianity with impunity.”

  • “We may object, on different grounds, some secular, some religious, to your adopting children…”

    I believe the issues of marriage, adoption and assisted reproduction cannot be so easily separated. After all, it is one thing to restrict adoption or assisted reproduction on the grounds of marital status, for marriage belongs to the public sphere of the state; it would be very different to do so, on the grounds of sexual orientation, which belongs to the private sphere of civil society.

  • And you really do not think what is wanted will come about?

    That, we will just have to see; those of us who are not eliminated
    to bring what is coming, about.

    Karl

  • My, that was well written. Even above Mr. Bonchamps usual level. (My opinion, of course)
    I don’t think I’d change a word.

  • Bonchamps: Took my breath away.
    Michael Paterson-Seymour “We may object, on different grounds, some secular, some religious, to your adopting children…”
    “I believe the issues of marriage, adoption and assisted reproduction cannot be so easily separated. After all, it is one thing to restrict adoption or assisted reproduction on the grounds of marital status, for marriage belongs to the public sphere of the state; it would be very different to do so, on the grounds of sexual orientation, which belongs to the private sphere of civil society.” Forgvie me, I am not sure about what you are saying. Once marriage equality is reached by the homosexual agenda, (here in Maryland January 2013) no holds barred. They will have legal right to adopt children, assisted reproduction, indoctrination of a captive audience of children in public schools and a captive population of citizens whose language and culture will be corrupted by calling the vice of lust, the virtue of love, a man who cannot be a wife, a wife, a husband who is a woman, and worst of all indoctrination of a captive audience of minor children in transgenderism; that the state will pay for sex change operations if you happen to be seduced into believeing that you do not like being who you have been created to be sexually. It will not end there either. The state will usurp the authority to outlaw any voice against its determined abuse of the human being: The Sacred Scripture, The Catholic Church, eventually to erase marriage itself but to deny the human being his soul, his freedom, his life. To codify a crime is a crime.

  • Nicely stated but there is a broader agenda which I recognize is not the topic of this post. The homosexual political agenda turns our founding principles, and the corresponding relationship of individual to state, upside down. The laws regarding homosexual behavior with “marriage” being just the emotional touchstone issue will flow from legalistic rights asserted by the state for its chosen people—whether that be the homosexualist, Planned Parenthood, Green Energy cronies, et al. Thus, what is ultimately being sought is a “transformation” of the relationship between individual and state. The homosexualist will seek the criminalization of speech critical to their lifestyle, the radical extinguishment of any natural understanding of a human family, lifestyle indoctrination in all schools, not just public schools, the unbridled suppression of religious values, and the destruction of civil society and civic association including such organizations as the Boy Scouts. I recall a case a few years back where the State of NJ ruled that the Boy Scouts were in essence a hate group having violated NJ law forbidding discrimination against homosexuals—the Boy Scouts thought it wrong to allow homosexual troop leaders to cavort with young adolescents in pup tents on camping trips. That case was narrowly overturned by the US Supreme Court, 5-4.

    Through sloppy thinking, shallow emotionalism or plain apathy, most people don’t understand the very real struggle taking place. It’s not about “marriage” except to get the camel’s nose under the tent.

  • To the radical gays: What do you offer to society in return? If you do not recognize your own soul how will you acknowledge my soul and the souls of others? If you dishonor your parents who brought you into the world, how do you demand honor from society? If you do not respect yourself, why do you expect respect from your neighbors?

  • Yeah, I don’t think they want your approval and what you want is the rest of society to not only share your disapproval but codify it into law.

    Sadly, not going to happen, people don’t hate the gays like they used to and each generation even less.

    I know, I know, that makes your god very angry and it’s going to a make us all pay!

  • Salvage,

    Did you even read the post? In any case, disapproval of gay marriage is inherent in any successful civilization. How could a civilization ever approve of a lifestyle that contributes no new members, unless it was suicidal? And ours may well be suicidal, I don’t doubt that possibility either.

    I don’t hate people who struggle with same-sex attraction. That said, I think what it means to be “gay” in this society is 90% socially constructed, a sub-culture shaped by radical political activists who want you all to think and act in specific ways, and not biology.

  • Bonchamps,

    Salvage is another internet atheist troll who can’t stand it that there are some quite rational and logical people who for very well thought out reasons simply don’t subscribe to his screed of secularism and antipathy against religion. He / she / it goes from Catholic blog to Catholic blog spewing forth the same old tired idiocies over and over again. This individual has been infecting the Curt Jester’s blog of late and has now found him / her / itself here.

  • Pinky,

    What I meant was what I wrote. I don’t advocate bullying anyone, but it will happen sometimes, and society cannot be restructured by draconian laws and reeducation programs (which we already have in public schools) to make everyone love and accept and never ever bully gays, which is what they seem to be demanding in my view.

  • Art,

    The day I take writing advice from you….

    🙂

  • Pingback: What Radical Gays Really Want…
  • “…it would be very different to do so, on the grounds of sexual orientation, which belongs to the private sphere of civil society.”

    It would seem sexual orientation doesn’t only apply to the private sphere if there is the demand for extension of “rights” that belong properly to married couples. Marriage of course being the union of one man and one woman.

  • The horror. Salvage will receive whatever he merits, as will all of us, when he assumes room temperature. The horror.

    That is the reason we are called to pray for the conversion of sinners and America.

  • Very well said.

    It’s like I tell my kids: When your friends are misbehaving – and they know they are misbehaving – they will want you to come along and do it too. Don’t do it. Don’t join them, don’t just go along.

  • T. Shaw, a BIG smile for your first paragraph and a big THANK YOU as an American sinner.

  • In the case of “gay marriage”, the big lie is that there is some desire on the part of conservatives and Christians in this country to actually deny some right, some liberty, some freedom to people who identify themselves and live as homosexuals.

    That would be easier to believe if Rick Santorum hadn’t specifically supported the Texas law struck down in 2002, and if the bishop of Denver hadn’t explicitly opposed the civil unions law in his home state. Obviously at least some self-described conservatives very much do want to deny gays those rights, and go on TV and talk about how important it is that those rights be denied.

  • From what I can tell, Santorum supported the rights of states to have or not have such laws. And so do I for that matter. But that’s a state’s rights issue. I can think that the state has a right to outlaw something without thinking that it would also be prudent for it to do so. Besides, anti-sodomy laws aren’t just about punishing people who want to live homosexual lifestyles; they can be used to add additional charges to people who prey upon children, rapists, etc. If anyone was suggesting the prosecution of consenting adults, I would be opposed to that and I’m fairly certain even Santorum would be.

    As for the “civil unions law”, no such law is required for people who want to live as homosexuals to do so. Anything such a law would grant could already be established through private contracts. What homosexuals want is the privilege of presumption, the prestige of marriage. They cannot have it. We will not give it.

  • “To reiterate, this time specifically to the radical homosexual: on all the issues that concern the consenting adults only, we don’t care. Of course we care in the abstract that you are leading lives of grave sin in open defiance of God, but then so do millions of ‘heterosexuals’ who fornicate, commit adultery, use artificial contraception, sterilize themselves, and so on.”

    Reminded me of something else I read today.
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/badcatholic/2012/05/why-i-dont-care.html
    I don’t think that sort of indifference is right or healthy.

  • The Texas GOP platform on which Rick Perry ran for governor includes in part: Texas Sodomy Statutes – We oppose the legalization of sodomy. We demand that Congress exercise its authority granted by the U.S. Constitution to withhold jurisdiction from the federal courts from cases involving sodomy. That is not about pedophiles or rapists: that’s about consenting adults. The Texas GOP does care. And if that’s not enough, you could visit the website of Fred “God Hates Fags” Phelps and see if his views line up with the “I don’t care about consenting adults” perspective.

    At least some people really do care, and they make a big deal out of it.

    No matter who you are, some people on your side take your position over a cliff. Gay people who just want to have the usual legal protections have to deal with radical gay loons who damage churches and make them look bad. It’s not their fault, and we should be careful not to lump them all together, but those extremist gays do exist and just denying that they exist is not a valid strategy for homosexuals who don’t do such things. And in the same way, there are real anti-gay people who really do want to make homosexual activity in itself illegal. We may be of the “I don’t care just don’t expect my approval” line of thinking, but not everybody on “our side” takes that view, and just pretending they don’t exist isn’t a viable way for us to deal with them.

    The right way to deal with them is to condemn their extremist views and make clear we don’t share them. Pretending they don’t exist, or explaining away their statements to make it seem like they agree with us when they don’t, is an insult to those who listen and an offense against the truth. And it doesn’t work.

  • Rick Santorum did not support the Texas statute. As Bonchamps explained, he opposed the Supreme Court decision striking down the statute because the Court’s decision was a violation of states’ right and the law itself did not run afoul (contrary to the majority’s assertion) of any constitutional provision. Since the case, there has hardly been any serious kind of effort to bring back sodomy laws. Sure there are isolated individuals who hold these views, but don’t pretend that they represent a significant subset of the Catholic or general population.

  • The question isn’t whether they are significant or representative, it’s whether they exist at all, and whether it’s “a lie” that they exist, and whether gay people are just crazy to worry about them.

    They do exist, it is not “a lie” that they exist, and gay people may be overreacting to worry about them, but if so it generally doesn’t help a discussion to tell someone who’s overreacting that they are overreacting.

  • I’ve known scores of LGBT people, most of whom were Catholics until they were chased out of the church by frothing-at-the-mouth conservatives. Begone with you mob-raising children of hell! These people need the church especially in their circumstances, and their souls are on your hands.

  • Fred Phelps is not a Christian. I don’t mean that in a No True Scotman sense. I mean Phelps denies being a Christian and calls himself a “Tachmonite” along with some gobbledegook about King David.

    He does, however, self-identify as a Democrat. 🙂 (True dish!)

  • I truly wonder how human beings can be so closed and so sure that their belief their God is right and would support a barely tolerated stance on homosexuals. You are no different than radical Muslims in your narrow minded beliefs. Do you think God would disapprove of a child who is coming from a horrible life and is adopted into a family that is gay and will give this child a healthy and educated safe life? Would you prefer to have a child who could be adopted by a same sex couple (Dare I say GAY?!) stay with a mother/father in an environment that offers no hope, nothing but disparity, poverty and no future?
    Step off your throne, religious zealots such as yourself and those who follow your every disgusting word is what is wrong with America. Your extremist political and religious positions are horrifying and mind boggling. No God would ever approve of such thought…I pity you.

  • And in the same way, there are real anti-gay people who really do want to make homosexual activity in itself illegal. We may be of the “I don’t care just don’t expect my approval” line of thinking, but not everybody on “our side” takes that view, and just pretending they don’t exist isn’t a viable way for us to deal with them. The right way to deal with them is to condemn their extremist views and make clear we don’t share them.

    In New York, consensual sodomy was a class b misdemeanor. It was seldom prosecuted for obvious reasons and the code provision was arbitrarily annulled by the state court of appeals in 1980. All throughout my father’s life, consensual sodomy was unlawful in New York. I cannot look at all the facets of the world he and his contemporaries built and conclude it was less just and less civilized than the one in which we live.

  • Noah & Nicole:

    Noah,

    “I’ve known scores of LGBT people, most of whom were Catholics until they were chased out of the church by frothing-at-the-mouth conservatives. Begone with you mob-raising children of hell! These people need the church especially in their circumstances, and their souls are on your hands.”

    I don’t consider people who believe that they can be Catholic while living in open defiance of Church teaching to be Catholics at all. For such people to no longer identify as Catholic is no loss. It is a gain for us. They have already bartered their souls away.

    If someone with same-sex attraction is truly struggling and told that they are evil simply because they have the attraction, this is wrong. I oppose this, and virtually everyone I know opposes this. I don’t know a man or woman in the Church who doesn’t struggle daily with some terrible temptation. The Church exists for sinners. It is a Church comprised of sinners. Even the saints are sinners.

    When they cross the line to struggling with an attraction to acting out on it and assuming that “God is fine with it” (a false assumption), then good riddance. We don’t need such people. We don’t want them. They corrupt and pollute the body with the obstinacy and perversion. And I say the same about those who openly condone and promote the use of artificial contraception, abortion, fornication, divorce – all of it. By taking such positions they make it clear that it is THEY who reject US, and not vice-versa. THEY REJECT US.

    Nicole,

    “I truly wonder how human beings can be so closed and so sure that their belief their God is right and would support a barely tolerated stance on homosexuals. ”

    How can supporting individual property rights possibly be “barely tolerated”? I don’t “barely” tolerate people with same-sex attraction; I tolerate them, period. In fact, I consider it none of my business what a person’s sexual temptations are.

    You’re the narrow-minded one, though, because you are incapable of seeing about how this isn’t about God or my belief in God. It is about resisting the attempts of a radical political movement to impose its views and beliefs on me and everyone else. They can already DO anything they want. What they now want is not the freedom to DO things, but the power to force me to approve of what they do.

    They will never have it!

    ” Do you think God would disapprove of a child who is coming from a horrible life and is adopted into a family that is gay and will give this child a healthy and educated safe life?”

    There are no families that are gay. Families have a mother and a father. Two people shacking up are not a family. And I don’t think it is what is best for any child, because it is simply a fact that gay relationships are unstable and short-lived, and that children turn out best psychologically and emotionally when raised by a MAN AND A WOMAN. When your entire life, your entire identity, is wrapped up in your sexual preferences, how could it be otherwise? Families are about more than sex and sexual preference.

    If gays want children, they can marry people of the opposite sex, conceive them, and have real families. They may not enjoy their sex lives, but all people eventually have to choose between sexual freedom and familial responsibilities. They aren’t biologically incapable of reproduction. It is a CHOICE, and society does NOT have to honor their choice to live in sterile relationships. It isn’t a right, and it isn’t even a privilege. It’s an absurdity.

    “Would you prefer to have a child who could be adopted by a same sex couple (Dare I say GAY?!) stay with a mother/father in an environment that offers no hope, nothing but disparity, poverty and no future?”

    I’m not sure what a state of “disparity” would be, but hey, I’m just an uneducated redneck Buy-Bull Be-Leavin’ hillbilly, so what do I know about language and meanings of words?

    In any case, yes, I would in fact prefer that a child be adopted by a man and woman, married and committed to one another, who were of lesser means (generally poor people can’t afford to adopt) than a wealthy pair of homosexuals, for reasons already mentioned. There’s nothing wrong with the relative poverty of the United States. If they’re living at the level of Mexican day-laborers in the United States they’re living better than well over half of the world’s inhabitants.

    “Step off your throne, religious zealots such as yourself and those who follow your every disgusting word is what is wrong with America.”

    I know you hate freedom of speech, hate the Constitution, hate everything this country stands for. But we’re not going anywhere. You’ll have to come kill me if you want me to be quiet.

    “Your extremist political and religious positions are horrifying and mind boggling. No God would ever approve of such thought…I pity you.”

    MY extremist positions? For thousands of years societies have banned homosexuality and stigmatized it, have rejected it as a social poison that leads to the collapse of civilizations. MY positions are nothing but the continuity of thousands of years of social, political and religious wisdom, without which we would have never even been able to have a civilization capable of even debating such questions in the first place. It is YOUR positions that are extreme, that want to turn over and uproot every social institution so that people can enjoy the mindless and reckless pursuit of personal pleasure. YOU are the extremist. YOU are the radical. YOUR views are destroying this country.

  • First I must address your claim that I hate freedom of speech, the Constitution and everything this country stands for. Not quite sure where you got that but I am the farthest from that, clearly we are engaging in freedom of speech in this forum are we not?

    Don’t worry I don’t want to kill you for you to be quiet, see I think you just missed one of our major freedoms and liberties our country was founded on, I don’t think I am the one who is extreme here.

    Anyway, yes, my whole goal here is to uproot every social institution, for only personal pleasure. I am actually a moderate not an extremist in any aspect by the normal social order. I just don’t keep my beliefs rooted in thousand year old dogma, it doesn’t apply to modern day society. If society kept the same mindset from thousands of years back I would have to say that evolution of man would never have occurred. I, unlike you am not threatened by your beliefs, I read them and move on. At the end of the day you won’t ruin my world.

    Ok so this is stated why? I’m not sure what a state of “disparity” would be, but hey, I’m just an uneducated redneck Buy-Bull Be-Leavin’ hillbilly, so what do I know about language and meanings of words? Feeling a bit insecure?

    In any case, yes, I would in fact prefer that a child be adopted by a man and woman, married and committed to one another, who were of lesser means (generally poor people can’t afford to adopt) than a wealthy pair of homosexuals, for reasons already mentioned. There’s nothing wrong with the relative poverty of the United States. If they’re living at the level of Mexican day-laborers in the United States they’re living better than well over half of the world’s inhabitants.

    I never stated the means of gay or straight, I am asking you if there was a child born into a drug filled violent male and female household wouldn’t you rather have that child be adopted by a gay couple if there was no one else to help the baby? Or perhaps your belief in your thousand year old dogma would prevent that?

    I am happy to hear you are such a man of the world and know what it is like to live as a Mexican day laborer.. I am sure you have traveled extensively in the world and seen so much even experienced poverty?
    |
    To sum it up we agree to disagree, our views yours nor mine are not going to destroy our society, and if you still believe that then I am sorry you are going to have alot of stress to deal with for the remainder of your life.

    Thanks for the interesting debate.

  • Nicole,

    “Not quite sure where you got that but I am the farthest from that”

    I get it from the fact that you think that me and people who think like me are the problem with America, and from the fact gay rights radicals have a long record of opposing free speech. When you talk like them, I group you with them.

    “Don’t worry I don’t want to kill you for you to be quiet, see I think you just missed one of our major freedoms and liberties our country was founded on, I don’t think I am the one who is extreme here.”

    No one is denying anyone freedom or liberty. I didn’t miss anything. I’m free to denounce homosexual behavior, and they’re free to enter into whatever contracts they like. But they are not “free” to force the rest of us into accepting their way of life as normal, good, or equal with the traditional family. That’s what’s at stake here. NOT their freedom, which they already have and which no one wants to take away.

    “Anyway, yes, my whole goal here is to uproot every social institution, for only personal pleasure.”

    If you support “gay marriage”, that is EXACTLY your goal, whether you realize it or not. That’s what you support.

    ” I just don’t keep my beliefs rooted in thousand year old dogma, it doesn’t apply to modern day society.”

    First of all, our Church is two thousand years old, and so are its teachings. Secondly, there are some truths that ALWAYS apply to ANY society. One of the Ten Commandments is “thou shalt not murder.” Do you believe that just because that commandment was given thousands of years ago that it is no longer good today? Of course not. In no society can we have people simply going around murdering one another. Some laws ARE timeless. Others can be changed. Wisdom consists of knowing the difference, and charity consists of actually caring about knowing the difference.

    Hysterical supporters of “gay marriage” are totally lacking in both.

    “If society kept the same mindset from thousands of years back I would have to say that evolution of man would never have occurred. ”

    If society changed as often as people like you would like to change everything, there would be no society at all. What you call “evolution” I call degeneracy.

    ” I, unlike you am not threatened by your beliefs, I read them and move on.”

    Do you? We’ll see.

    “Feeling a bit insecure?”

    It’s called sarcasm.

    “I never stated the means of gay or straight,”

    Yes you did. You mentioned poverty.

    “I am asking you if there was a child born into a drug filled violent male and female household wouldn’t you rather have that child be adopted by a gay couple if there was no one else to help the baby?”

    No. I’d rather the child be adopted by a truly married couple that couldn’t have children of their own. There are many of them on waiting lists already. And if such couples were not available, I would still say no. People can quit drugs.

    “Or perhaps your belief in your thousand year old dogma would prevent that?”

    My belief in the social harm caused by the legitimization of the homosexual lifestyle would prevent that.

    “I am happy to hear you are such a man of the world and know what it is like to live as a Mexican day laborer.. ”

    It’s just a fact that the poorest Americans are still wealthier than most of the rest of the world. You don’t have to go anywhere to know that. It’s the information age, my dear!

  • Dfp makes a valid point

    It is no coincidence that the three offences of blasphemy, sodomy and witchcraft were abolished (without a debate) by a single resolution of the National Assembly, on 25 September 1791. Even the Catholic members recognised the wisdom of the Roman maxim “deorum injuria diid curae” – Offences against the gods are the gods’ business.

  • And then the French Revolutionaries, as the rest of their bloody history well illustrates, disproved the truth of that maxim.

  • On adoption by same-sex couples, the eminent psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Pierre Lévy-Soussan, an adviser to the French government has this to say: “It is in the child’s best interests to join a nuclear family that is already socially accepted so that he or she does not have to take on the additional task, following a history of abandonment, of adapting to a family that is, for whatever reason, ‘non-standard’.” He believes that in order to be successful, adoption must lead to a psychological filiation that “allows for a nexus of the three elements that are basic to any society: the biological, the social and the subjective dimensions specific to human beings. The psychological strength of this construction exceeds the purely biological connection of filiation and provides it with security. The security and ‘truth’ of this filiation are based on childbirth, on a potential or actual procreative relationship between a man and a woman, allowing the fictional filiation through the encounter with the other sex, alive and of the same generation. The fictional filiation can then be experienced as true, consistent and reasonable.” The difference in sex between the two members of the parental couple thus seems to him indispensable if the adoption “graft” is to take.

    He points out that the number of such children who have undergone analysis is very small. He believes surveys that appear to indicate the contrary should be viewed with caution, contradicting, as they do, nearly a century of psychoanalytical theory, grounded in clinical case-studies, often extending over years and even decades.

    The lack of objectivity in this area is blatant. The studies in question deal, rather, with children born of a heterosexual relationship and raised by a biological parent and his or her companion – a situation that is absolutely not comparable with the establishment of a dual same-sex filiation for a child unconnected with the couple.

  • By the way I know “your” church but that is not the only church out there and 2K years is surpassed by other religions. I don’t follow dogma verbatim, do you read the Bible and accept it as verbatim? I believe that is called Born Again Christian, perhaps you don’t like their dogma? Just curious. Your religion is one of many don’t think it is the one and only. I proudly, per your definition claim to be radical as I support gay rights in every way and will uproot society in every way. You see your extreme belief in religion is exactly what has destroyed countries, the crusades might ring a bell. I believe in the human good and the human good believes in treating people with respect and equality, not killing, nor judging and the list goes on.

    If you support “gay marriage”, that is EXACTLY your goal, whether you realize it or not. That’s what you support. Then I support it full on, and God help you. LOL

    First of all, our Church is two thousand years old, and so are its teachings.

    Not really sure why the fact your church being 2K years old is of essence there are so many other religions just as old if not older than “yours”.

    Secondly, there are some truths that ALWAYS apply to ANY society. One of the Ten Commandments is “thou shalt not murder.” Do you believe that just because that commandment was given thousands of years ago that it is no longer good today?

    Well let’s not be ridiculous and secondly I don’t need an ancient dogma to tell my being, my gut that murder is wrong. I don’t need church dogma for that. Perhaps you should explore Buddhism to enlighten and lighten your ‘self’ and become in touch with letting go.
    I don’t need a Catholic dogma or any religion to tell me what is right and wrong and that committing murder is wrong or stealing is wrong. As a human being most people know this as a basic concept.
    Your religious beliefs are what they are, Let me tell you our society has to be more concerned with terrorist threats than gay men and woman having marriage rights and adopting.

    Let me tell you I can guarantee you that the gay unions, etc. will not hurt you but your ignorance will.

  • Art Deco: God bless you and yours.

  • I will leave responding to the substance of Nicole’s latest comment to Bonchamps, as he ably responded to her last comment. I would merely note to Nicole that among other things we support at this blog is the use of proper punctuation in comments, an abhorrence of run on sentences in comments and a strong aversion to stream of consciousness writing in comments. Simple declarative sentences are your friends, and please make use of them.

  • Nicole,

    You are a deeply confused woman. I pity you.

    “By the way I know “your” church but that is not the only church out there”

    Never said it was.

    “and 2K years is surpassed by other religions.”

    Who cares? I was correcting your inaccurate statement about our dogmas being “a thousand years old”, that’s all.

    “I don’t follow dogma verbatim, do you read the Bible and accept it as verbatim?”

    If you don’t follow dogmas “verbatim”, then you don’t follow dogmas at all – or you don’t even know what a dogma is. My money is on the latter. It’s a buzzword you throw around without the slightest clue as to what it means.

    I accept what Scripture says, but it is for the Church to properly interpret Scripture.

    “I believe that is called Born Again Christian, perhaps you don’t like their dogma? Just curious.”

    Evangelicals do not have dogmas. We’re Catholics here. Catholics. We have the dogmas. Sigh…

    “Your religion is one of many don’t think it is the one and only.”

    Who said it was? Are you nuts or what? You’re more interested in religion than I am. You’re obsessed with it. My opposition to gay marriage is mostly secular!

    ” I proudly, per your definition claim to be radical as I support gay rights in every way and will uproot society in every way.”

    Then we’re enemies, and I’ll see you on the other side of the barricades.

    “. You see your extreme belief in religion is exactly what has destroyed countries, the crusades might ring a bell. ”

    The Crusades were just wars, defensive wars against the aggression of the Islamic Turks. I’d eat my shoes with ketchup and mustard if you could demonstrate the slightest bit of insightful, contextual knowledge of the series of wars known as the Crusades that took place over several hundred years. “Extreme belief in religion” is what saved the West from Islamic takeover, the crazy notion that something is worth fighting for and defending. I know, that’s insane, right?

    “Well let’s not be ridiculous”

    The idea that you can discard ideas because they are old, which is what you advocated, is what is ridiculous. When I see idiocy, I expose the idiocy. You can stop it any time you like.

    ” I don’t need an ancient dogma to tell my being, my gut that murder is wrong. I don’t need church dogma for that.”

    It’s totally not the point. I never made any such claim. I’m simply pointing out that just because an idea is old, doesn’t mean we need to “move beyond it” or that, as you said, “it doesn’t apply to today.” Some old ideas DO apply today. That’s the point, you silly woman.

    “Let me tell you our society has to be more concerned with terrorist threats than gay men and woman having marriage rights and adopting.”

    A society that allows “gay marriage” will be destroyed from within long before terrorists or foreign armies destroy it from without.

  • Nicole et al,

    Thank God we have people like you!

    I could be dead by now.

    I have to travel on business, tomorrow. I will again get the pat-down – metal detectors . . . two titanium knees . . . They’ll turn America into one big concentration camp to save me.

    We see a number of guest, gay commentators. Woo-hoo! It’s so nice to hav special people make the effort to straighten out us [fill in the blank].

    I suggest you don’t waste 600 words.

    My lips get tired.

    Come right out in and say it:

    “I create the ‘rules’ and if you don’t agree, you are an ignorant BIGOT.”

  • “The lack of objectivity in this area is blatant. The studies in question deal, rather, with children born of a heterosexual relationship and raised by a biological parent and his or her companion – a situation that is absolutely not comparable with the establishment of a dual same-sex filiation for a child unconnected with the couple.”

    I would say the lack of objectivity is clearly the case in same-sex parenting studies. Most studies have been self-report questionnaires. Most of the respondents are of higher socio-economic status (SES). The studies do not control for SES, educational level etc. The response rates are typically low (less than 50%.) The “parents” are also allowed to report how well the child is doing rather that studies being performed. As a result, the data is as reliable as the data on single moms from the 70’s and 80’s. That is, not very reliable.

    As we have learned through the 90’s and the new millenium, single-parent homes are typically harmful to child development, we are now beginning to learn that same-sex parenting is harmful. First, such “couples” have higher rates of mental illness themselves. This, however, as some may argue, is not the psychological result of “not being accepted.” Such higher rates are found among homosexuals in Sweden where there has been plenty of acceptance for decades. Studies are also beginning to show higher rates of anxiety and other “externalizing behaviors” in children in same-sex households. Add to this higher rates of self-identifiying as gay (so much for being born that way) as well as higher rates of early sexual experimentation and early contraception use.

    This combined with the now well-developed data that shows there are, non-culturally influenced, differences between men and women (surprise to none except the ideological left) and that there are distinct parenting differences between men and women. Then there are the distinct responses of infants and children to mothers and fathers who, through their distinct expressions of human parenting, contribute to the raising of children.

    The bottom line, parenting, like marriage, is for one man and one woman.

  • What you had to say is exactly what I have thinking and articulating in com boxes; only you said it much better! Thank you for saying it. It needed to be said!

  • They do exist, it is not “a lie” that they exist, and gay people may be overreacting to worry about them, but if so it generally doesn’t help a discussion to tell someone who’s overreacting that they are overreacting.

    My object in explaining to someone that their risk assessments are cockeyed wpuld be to tell them the truth. I could not care less if it does not ‘help the discussion’ (whatever that may mean).

    Yeah, I don’t think they want your approval and what you want is the rest of society to not only share your disapproval but codify it into law. Sadly, not going to happen, people don’t hate the gays like they used to and each generation even less.

    Salvage, there have over the last 35 years or so been two salient amendments to legal codes under discussion:

    1. Amendments to labor law, commercial law, education law, and landlord-tenant law that would compel employers, proprietors, schools, and landlords to enter into contracts and exchanges that they might wish to exercise the discretion to avoid. Please note who is being coerced and who is not.

    2. Amendments to the practice of welfare departments in evaluating households for child placements. All such practices incorporate a set of value judgments the implication of which are to see households occupying different strata of quality. Someone is always the subject of ‘disapproval’ in these evaluations. It is just a question of whom.

    3. Amendments to matrimonial law which provide legal recognition to certain sort of affiliations previously ignored in law and generate legal obligations where none existed before. Whether someone ‘hates’ homosexuals is beside the point; whether one disapproves of homosexuality is not but it is not necessary to the discussion. Friendships between men are seldom if ever encased in any sort of formal instrument or institution and the sort of official or incorporated fraternities that did exist sixty years ago (men’s clubs, men’s colleges, men’s sport teams, the military) have suffered escalating legal and social obstacles to their operation in that time.

    I’ve known scores of LGBT people, most of whom were Catholics until they were chased out of the church by frothing-at-the-mouth conservatives. Begone with you mob-raising children of hell! These people need the church especially in their circumstances, and their souls are on your hands.

    Your circle of friends has an interesting composition, Noah, most particularly since so many of them seem to have been ensconced in congregations where people are vociferous and opinionated well beyond the norm you see in any social setting. (Cannot help but recall in contemplating this that it is not hard to find people who have a neuralgic response to any sort of criticism, stated or implied).

    I truly wonder how human beings can be so closed and so sure that their belief

    Well, Nicole, reading you, and reading ‘salvage’, and reading ‘dfp’, and reading ‘Noah’, I might just ask the same question.

  • The Roman Empire fell after its citizens lost their sense of self-sacrifice, virtue and duty (in family and the public sphere). The enemies were the same, but Romans on the other hand were but a mere shadow of themselves.

    Thank God for practicing Catholics and others who defend these timeless values. It will be what saves this beautiful and grand country from itself.

  • Fantastic article! Going to make copies for everyone I know. As simplistic as this may seem to the “educated” among us I say, “If God would have wanted Adam and Adam, or Eve and Eve that’s what He would have done. There would be no proliferation of humanity if this was the norm from the Garden of Eden on.” Oh wait, or He could have made some way for Adam and Adam or Eve and Eve to procreate! I guess God wasn’t smart enough for that though.

  • Nicole considering that the Catholic Church is the only church founded by the apostles and the Son of God as well as the apostles we certainly have a lot more validity than say the Hindus or Baptists. We are Jews who accept Christ as the Son of God.

  • I think there is a problem with acting gay simply because when gay people get bullied they often end up committing suicide in comparison with kids who get bullied and don’t commit suicide because they are not gay.

  • Acting homosexual is also irrational it really is based on “Gay Pride”.

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  • I think there is a problem with acting gay simply because when gay people get bullied they often end up committing suicide in comparison with kids who get bullied and don’t commit suicide because they are not gay.

    A chaste Catholic with SSA explained to me that the difference is there is no comparable support system for kids with SSA. Whereas a kid bullied for, say, being Muslim or Hispanic will have an extended family and friend network to fall back on.

  • I think there is a problem with acting gay simply because when gay people get bullied they often end up committing suicide in comparison with kids who get bullied and don’t commit suicide because they are not gay.

    Suicide is a rare outcome of adolescent problems.

    A chaste Catholic with SSA explained to me that the difference is there is no comparable support system for kids with SSA. Whereas a kid bullied for, say, being Muslim or Hispanic will have an extended family and friend network to fall back on.

    This is Courage Man, no? He is a contemporary of ours. The first I ever heard of explicit homosexuality in a secondary school setting was around about 1986 and it concerned a program erected by the New York City Board of Education to allow identified homosexuals to attend a high overhead magnet school instead of their district high schools. The first time I ever met a high school student who admitted his homosexuality and was known as such was in 1994. I think I am on fairly firm ground in suggesting that latent homosexuals knocked about in high school ca. 1982 were suffering from a deficit of masculine je-ne-sais-quoi, not from public knowledge of their sexual disorders. Normalization of sodomy does not address this problem except insofar as it travels through the pathway of dispensing with masculinity as something to be valued and honed. There are costs to following such a path…

    I might also point out that people are commonly not proximate to their extended families and their immediate families often do not buttress their coping skills. You and Mr. Leonardi have written handsome tributes to your fathers. That is not a hand everyone gets dealt. That applies to people with problems that have no name (who are much more common than latent homosexuals).

  • I highly doubt that the SSA act makes much of a difference because for a long time as a young kid I don’t think I was in the system because I was an immigrant from Switzerland and only my nuclear family moved to the US but whenever I was bullied I didn’t become suicidal.

  • Art Deco who is Mr. Leonardi? You can’t be referring to me I’m not Italian I’m German.

  • Bon Champs children who are raised by lesbians tend to act like bastards because did not receive any proper fatherly love to teach them that they have to act right and I have no idea what children raised by two homosexual men end up like. As far as your prejudice against hillbillies goes I would point out that there is a difference between Hillbillies and Rednecks.

  • I am sorry Bon Champs I did not notice that you were quoting Noah and being sarcastic.

  • “I never stated the means of gay or straight, I am asking you if there was a child born into a drug filled violent male and female household wouldn’t you rather have that child be adopted by a gay couple if there was no one else to help the baby? Or perhaps your belief in your thousand year old dogma would prevent that?”
    With billions of people upon the face of the earth, that scenario is rather telling. The homosexual agenda is to be the only one left to adopt the child. Jesus Christ is perfect CHARITY, and the Catholic Church has practiced Jesus’ perfect CHARITY for over two thousand years. I am sure one of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity will happily take the child. Why don’t you join the Missionaries of Charity and get back to me when you return.

  • Very well written and, a pointedly honest critique. There is one thing almost never recognized nor, discussed: Personality Disorders. Having worked around criminals for nearly 30 years, one becomes somewhat familiar with dysfunctional behaviors. The hysterical, outragous & confrontational manner of their approach is an emotional level attempt to get attention. Most of these people have more than a single disorder , none of which, have been addressed. In California, a pending law (SB 1170) is another attempt to stop any/all therapy for people seeking to change their behaviors. In other words, the radical homosexuals refuse to allow people to leave their prison of disordered “sexuality” and lead normal, productive lives. Tyranny at its best.

  • It’s easy to imagine that gay people are part of a vast conspiracy to tear apart the happy, nuclear family lives of Catholics and good, hard working Americans when you believe you’re looking at the “big picture.” I promise you, though, that just as you say gay people will never, ever have your approval, that the gay community doesn’t really want (or need) it.

    As a 26 year old Catholic, I can think of only a small fraction of my friends who don’t know and love their gay friends and support what they would have no problem calling “equality.” While I don’t know much anything about the author of this article, I do know that these kinds of fatalistic, dramatic views are on their way out the door for good.

    And truly–thank God for that.

  • Mary I think Bon champs was being sarcastic in a reply to Nicole when he called himself an uneducated redneck.

  • “It’s easy to imagine that gay people are part of a vast conspiracy to tear apart the happy, nuclear family lives of Catholics and good, hard working Americans when you believe you’re looking at the “big picture.””

    Vast conspiracy? And you call me “dramatic.” Who said anything about a conspiracy? When radical gay activists (not “gays” in general) announce their hatred for Christianity, I don’t need to infer a conspiracy. I just have to believe them, and observe their actions.

    ” I promise you, though, that just as you say gay people will never, ever have your approval, that the gay community doesn’t really want (or need) it.”

    Of course they do. Like I said, it is the only thing they don’t have. There is no freedom, no right, that they do not enjoy. They want us to approve of their lifestyles and moral choices. They want to force us to think of and refer to their perverse unions as “marriages.” That’s not about their freedom – it is about ours.

    “As a 26 year old Catholic, I can think of only a small fraction of my friends who don’t know and love their gay friends and support what they would have no problem calling “equality.” ”

    If they support “gay marriage”, they are not Catholics. If you support “gay marriage”, you are not a Catholic.

    “While I don’t know much anything about the author of this article, I do know that these kinds of fatalistic, dramatic views are on their way out the door for good.

    And truly–thank God for that.”

    We aren’t going anywhere.

    And truly, you can blame God for that.

  • Pingback: An Argument Between Liberals « The Innocent Smith Journal
  • For professional reasons, I have to keep abreast of French law on the subject, where the two highest courts have decisively rejected SSM on equality grounds, for reasons, I believe, are equally applicable to Anglo-American law

    There the debate has focused on the public interest in marriage. After all, couples, regardless of sex have the options of unregulated cohabitation, which, nevertheless, has legal consequences, of domestic partnerships (certificat de concubinage notoire), or of civil solidarity pacts (pacte civil de solidarité) under the Law of 15 November 1999. So, what sets marriage apart? What public purpose does it serve?

    The obvious answer is found in the rule, unique to marriage, that “the child conceived or born in marriage has the husband for father.” This is the rule that, in 2005, the French Senate declared, “cannot be questioned without losing for this institution [civil marriage] its meaning and value.”

    The argument, formulated by the jurists and adopted by the courts, is, thus, (1) Mandatory civil marriage, makes the institution a pillar of the secular Republic, standing clear of the religious sacrament (2) The institution of republican marriage is inconceivable, absent the idea of filiation, enshrined, not in Church dogma, but in the Civil Code (3) The sex difference is central to filiation.

    It is significant that, in a country so committed to the principle of laïcité as France, no one has suggested that these views are either the result of religious convictions or an attempt to import them into the interpretation of the Code. If ever there was an argument based on clear “public reasons,” surely, this is it.

  • If they support “gay marriage”, they are not Catholics.

    I would assume Luke’s baptism remains valid.

    As a 26 year old Catholic,

    You should be taking instruction from Sacred Tradition, Sacred Scripture, and the Magisterium, not the surrounding kultursmog.

    I can think of only a small fraction of my friends who don’t know and love their gay friends and support what they would have no problem calling “equality.”

    So?

  • “How could a civilization ever approve of a lifestyle that contributes no new members, unless it was suicidal? And ours may well be suicidal, I don’t doubt that possibility either. “

    A great irony in the week where conservatives are getting their panties in a bunch over the fact that there were more minorities born than whites… Well, it makes me laugh anyway.

  • A great irony in the week where conservatives are getting their panties in a bunch over the fact that there were more minorities born than whites… Well, it makes me laugh anyway.

    Who? Where? And why is that relevant to this discussion?

  • Precisely Art. Anyone with even a brief experience with this blog would see that our concern regarding births is the unborn kids who do not get born due to abortion.

  • This is an excellent article which will be linked to from my own website http://www.wherethereispeter.blogspot.com. But, the one point of disagreement I have with his excellent article is the statement, “You don’t have the right to go through life without being heckled or bullied,…” for the Catechism of the Catholic Church clearly states in #2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
    Therefore, as a Catholic I would have to say that they DO have a right to go through life without being bullied.

  • NO—I do not respect your religious beliefs. I do respect your right to have them. I do respect your right to express them. I respect you so long as you respect me. I do not respect your “right” to call me evil. I do not respect your “Right” to tell me I am going to hell. I do not respect your “right” to impose YOUR beliefs on me. I do not respect ignorance, brainwashing, cults, hatred, bigotry, misogyny, sexism or tyranny. I do not respect your religion. And I do not have to.

  • This is the kind of inchoate hysteria I am talking about. If you respect my right to free speech, you respect my right to express the fact that your BEHAVIOR is evil (I don’t think any person is inherently evil). If you DON’T respect my right to express my beliefs, then you DON’T respect freedom at all!

    No one is imposing anything on you, psycho. You can live whatever kind of life you want. Get as many diseases as you like! I don’t want your respect, because YOU are an ignorant, narrow-minded, hate-filled little troll. But I WILL resist your deranged efforts to impose YOUR sick view of marriage on the rest of us through the power of the state.

  • Romans 14:11:

    “As I live, says the Lord,
    Every knee shall bow to Me,
    And every tongue shall confess to God.”

    You got NO choice, Flanoggin. None. Zero. Zip point squat. Your respect is not required. But you will bend your knee. You will confess with your tongue that Jesus is Lord. We all will, either of our own volition now or on the Great and Terrible Day when it’s too late.

  • What every homosexual desires is to be heterosexual, sexually mature. Gay marriage will not bring about what is lacking: heterosexuality.

  • Take it from this Evangelical Protestant, this is the most cogent explanation I have seen of the true motivation behind the “gay marriage” movement. Also, I clicked on the link to the homosexual website in the article and find their hypocrisy as disgusting as there ugly hostility toward Christ. If Christians oppose homosexual marriage, we are haters and bigots. Never mind our motivations. But they can denigrate and ridicule our Lord and everything we hold holy and never bat an eyelash at their own hypocrisy. As a supporter of the Manhattan Declaration, practicing Catholics and Evangelicals need to work together to defend our country and our values. (See manhattandeclaration.org)

  • Fr. Larry,

    I think we agree in substance. I’d certainly say that we have a moral obligation not to bully people. At the same time, I don’t think the state exists to protect people from being made fun of or teased. Part of the radical gay strategy as of late has been to merge with the “anti-bullying” movement, because they see in it a new tool of coercion and thought-control. Anything that can be classified as “bullying” can become the target of restrictive legislation; the Church’s teaching on homosexuality – that it is disordered and immoral – is classified as “bullying” by the radical gay movement. The aim is to use anti-bullying laws to silence the Church. We’ve seen this happening in other countries, such as Canada.

Notre Dame 88

Tuesday, October 5, AD 2010

By Charles E. Rice

Fr. Norman Weslin, O.S., at the complaint of Notre Dame, was arrested in May 2009 and charged as a criminal for peacefully entering the Notre Dame campus to offer his prayer of reparation for Notre Dame’s conferral of its highest honor on President Obama, the most relentlessly pro-abortion public official in the world.  The University refuses to ask the St. Joseph County prosecutor to drop the charges against Fr. Weslin and the others arrested, still known as the ND 88 although one, Linda Schmidt, died of cancer this past March.  Judge Michael P. Scopelitis, of St. Joseph Superior Court, recently issued two important orders in this case.

The first order denied the State’s motion to consolidate the cases of multiple defendants.  That motion would have denied each separate defendant his right to a separate jury trial.  The order did permit consolidation of the trials of twice-charged defendants on the separate offenses with which that defendant was charged; a defendant charged, for example, with trespass and disorderly conduct would therefore not have to appear for two trials.  Judge Scopelitis also denied the prosecution’s attempt to force each defendant to return to South Bend for each proceeding in the case, which would have coerced the defendants to abandon their defense.  Instead, the Judge permitted the defendants to participate by telephone in pre-trial conferences.

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38 Responses to Notre Dame 88

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  • What an outstanding article!! It would be nice if Catholic Universities actually lived up to “being Catholic” or that they lived out Catholic principles which are in line with Church teaching. Even those that are Traditional or conservative Catholic colleges find it very hard in some cases to actually walk-the-walk and not just talk-the-talk when it really counts (I know this from personal experience). I guess human nature takes over or something.

    The charges should have been dropped a long time ago. Shame on Notre Dame!

  • Catholic in name only.

    “We shall go before a higher tribunal – a tribunal where a Judge of infinite goodness, as well as infinite justice, will preside, and where many of the judgments of this world will be reversed.” Thomas Meagher, statement on sentencing by a saxon court.

    Matthew 12:34: “You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.”

  • “Notre Dame appears to be governed by academic ruling class wannabes. The operative religion of the academic and political establishments, however, is political correctness. Activist opponents of ROTC and activist advocates of “gay rights” are politically correct. Activist pro-lifers, such as Fr. Weslin and the ND88, are not. For Notre Dame’s leaders to show respect for the ND88, let alone apologize to them and seek an end to their prosecution, as they ought, would be to touch a third rail of academic respectability. It would not play well in the ruling academic circles. What would they think of us at Harvard, Yale, etc?”

    Bingo! The powers that be at Notre Dame are defending their faith against the heretics of the Notre Dame 88, and that faith has nothing to do with Catholicism. It is a disgrace that every bishop in this country has not condemned this.

  • Maybe ND simply wanted to protect its students and faculty. The mob had already shown its penchance for breaking the law — no one was capable of knowing whether the mob would become violent — it is not unheard of.

    ND’s “inconsistent” treatment is also not shocking. Given the history of trespassing and the fact that past light treatment did not stop it, ND may be sending a stronger message to protect the safety and security of its community.

    Mr. Rice should also know, as a lawyer, that Fr. Weslin’s health or his past deeds are irrelevant as to whether he broke the law. Surely, they are great rhetorical flourishes, but they are just that, a trick used to distract you from the fact that a law was willfully and knowingly ignored.

    Finally, Mr. Rice also should know, as a lawyer, that clients discourage employees from being deposed for all sorts of reasons — not necessarily related to whether they are “hiding” something. This is libelous.

  • This is libelous.

    An easy stone to throw for someone hiding behind the veil of anonymity.

  • “The mob had already shown its penchance for breaking the law — no one was capable of knowing whether the mob would become violent — it is not unheard of.”

    Yeah, you can never know when an 80 year old priest peacefully praying will turn violent.

    http://the-american-catholic.com/2010/03/08/father-norman-weslin-champion-of-the-unborn/

  • I was there, on campus for the mass and rosary. My daughter is one of the ND88. I walked out and joined the protesters for much of the day. The activities were all available on youtube. Only a deeply dishonest person could conceive of a “mob” anywhere near Notre Dame that day. Peace.

  • What about the 87 other people? Did ND and the police know the intentions of each of them? Frankly, I think it’s despicable that you use Fr. Weslin as your shield. Also, I missed the memo where we excuse the aged and people who have done otherwise good things in their lives for breaking the law. These people made conscious decisions to trespass. They could have stayed outside the university and gotten their point across. Rather, they wanted to make a spectable and get on TV, which they succeeded in doing. They now need to be adults and accept responsibility for their transgressions.

    Also, just because a person is 80, just because someone is a preist, just because someone is praying, doesn’t mean they can’t be violent. People pray to their god all the time before committing acts of violence — that cannot be denied. People who are 80 commit acts of violence, and we certainly have learned that priests are not above committing acts of violence. I would also point out that Fr. Weslin was just one person — there were many more.

    To an objective observer, and clearly you are not, these people trespassed. They were arrested. End of story. Any excuse you want to make is a consequence of your relgious and political views–which, of course, is your right and fine. Just don’t pretend it’s anything other than that.

    That day was supposed to be about the graduates celebrating their accomplishment. These clowns made it about their cause, which is a shame.

  • ” Only a deeply dishonest person could conceive of a “mob” anywhere near Notre Dame that day. Peace.”

    As our anonymous commenter is amply demonstrating. The Notre Dame 88 are being persecuted because they are a standing rebuke to the Notre Dame administration honoring the most pro-abortion president in our history. All the obfuscation in the world cannot disguise that very simple fact. My congratulations Larry on the fine job you obviously did in raising your daughter.

  • Anonymous, how long have you been a member of the Notre Dame administration?

  • In case Mr. McClarey does not have acces to a dictionary, please see the definition of “mob” and “dishonest.”

    Definition of MOB
    1: a large or disorderly crowd; especially : one bent on riotous or destructive action
    2: the lower classes of a community : masses, rabble
    3chiefly Australian : a flock, drove, or herd of animals
    4: a criminal set : gang; especially often capitalized
    5: a group of people : crowd

    Definition of DISHONEST
    Characterized by lack of truth, honesty, or trustworthiness : unfair, deceptive

    Here is an entry on ad hominem attacks — often resorted to by those who cannot win an argument on the mertis: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem

    Let me get this straight, a group of 88 religious zealots trespass onto private property on which the President of the United States is speaking and you are surprised/indignant they were arrested? Seriously?

    If you can, deep in your heart say that you would be defending, with the same zealousness, people who were protesting the “right to choose” or Islamic protestors, then, maybe I would believe you.

    It is sad that people turned a day of celebration for the graduates into a political side show. They should be ashamed of themselves.

  • a group of 88 religious zealots

    Thank God Notre Dame is doing its damnedest stamp out religious zeal.

    Then again, it’s been doing that since the Land O’ Lakes Statement, so I guess it’s consistent.

    Oh, and nice job of hiding behind “the graduates,” anonymous ND admin guy.

    It’s this sort of mindset that reminds me why I’m recommending that my children go to an avowedly secular college as opposed to a Land O’ Lakes one. Sure, they’ll hate your faith at a state university, but at least they won’t wear a cloak of Catholic sanctimony while doing it.

    Better to be stabbed in the chest than the back.

  • Let me get this straight, a group of 88 religious zealots trespass onto private property on which the President of the United States is speaking and you are surprised/indignant they were arrested? Seriously?

    There are over 11,000 students at Notre Dame. Add the faculty and the staff and you have 15,000 people on the campus as a matter of course. Then you add in any visitors that day. The ’88 religious zealots’ will increase the size of the campus population by 0.6%. The rathskellar at the campus I know best will have that many people present around noontime, and that particular institution is one-quarter the size of Notre Dame.

    You might also note that his primary complaint is not that they were arrested, but that the institution has persisted in pressing charges when they had not done so in previous circumstances, and lied publicly about their resons for so doing.

  • Just for the kind of clarity and exactness which is typical of Catholic thought, it is not Notre Dame which is prosecuting the ND88. It is Fr. Jenkins – personally. The buck stops at his desk. He hides behind the institution. Let us make an analogy – he is hiding behind the skirts of Our Lady.

  • I looked up your ip address anonymous, and I really hope that you are not an attorney at the law firm you are e-mailing from, because you are not very good at arguing in comboxes and I truly would hate to be paying you to do so in court. The firm that you are e-mailing from seems to have quite a few contacts with Notre Dame. I wonder if you are doing this on your own time, or if someone at Notre Dame is actually foolish enough to pay you to mount this type of sophistical defense of the indefensible?

  • It’s a pretty large firm – I interviewed with them a while back and have friends that work there. In the DC office alone, there are fourteen Domers. It’s unlikely that the commenter above is billing time for arguing on blogs, but the tone of the comment and the handy dictionary references suggest a feisty 1-3 year associate.

  • “but the tone of the comment and the handy dictionary references suggest a feisty 1-3 year associate.”

    Quite true. I hope for anonymous that he wasn’t doing this on a firm computer equipped with tracking software. If I were a partner there I would take a dim view of associates wasting time on blogs during office hours. Ah, the advantages of being a self-employed attorney!

  • If I were a partner there I would take a dim view of associates wasting time on blogs during office hours.

    um…yeah…I agree…no junior associate should ever waste time on blogs during office hours…right on. Who are these people? 😉

    In their defense, I will say that many partner’s definition of ‘office hours’ is roughly “any time during which the associate is alive and not undergoing major surgery.” Another benefit of being self-employed, I suppose.

  • “In their defense, I will say that many partner’s definition of ‘office hours’ is roughly “any time during which the associate is alive and not undergoing major surgery.””

    That is precisely one of the main reasons I became self-employed John Henry. I wanted to have a family life and not work on weekends, and too many firms seemed to think that associates lived only to practice law, and to be the handy target of the ire of dyspeptic partners.

  • “Just for the kind of clarity and exactness which is typical of Catholic thought, it is not Notre Dame which is prosecuting the ND88. It is Fr. Jenkins – personally. The buck stops at his desk.”

    bingo. Fr. Jenkins is doing all he can do to stay in the good graces of his liberal friends. chump.

  • I believe Professor Rice’s general thesis is unquestionably correct: Notre Dame craves the approval of the Princes of this World.

    But from the belly of the beast, a few qualifications may be appropriate.

    I have been told, at any rate, that because the charge is criminal trespass, Notre Dame, despite what everyone says, cannot ask the county prosecutor to dismiss the case. The prosecutor could ask that the case be dismissed, but he would have to justify the request to a judge.

    As Professor Rice documents, previous instances of this sort had been handled quietly by the university itself.This time the South Bend and St. Joseph county police were brought in, and I suspect that everyone in the administration now sees this was a blunder. Part of the reason for deposing Mr. Kirk may be to determine just how this decision came to be made.

    Notre Dame has offered “generous”terms to the defendants. Plead guilty, accept some kind of nominal or suspended punishment, and put the whole thing behind us. The university is in the position of the poor Roman magistrate judging the typical virgin and martyr: Cut me some slack–just genuflect to that damned idol over there and we can all go home. Such blandishments were generally rejected; and I suspect the current ones will be as well.

  • I have been told, at any rate, that because the charge is criminal trespass

    No kidding. If I am not mistaken, under New York law, an act of trespass does not qualify as criminal trespass unless (at a minimum) there is a fence or wall around the property which excludes intruders.

  • “I have been told, at any rate, that because the charge is criminal trespass, Notre Dame, despite what everyone says, cannot ask the county prosecutor to dismiss the case. The prosecutor could ask that the case be dismissed, but he would have to justify the request to a judge.”

    You have been misinformed. Prosecutors nolle prosse countless cases across the nation each day. The consent of the court is pro forma since the court lacks the power to compel the State to prosecute anyone, which is wholly in the discretion of the prosecutor.

    “Notre Dame has offered “generous”terms to the defendants.”

    Of course this demonstrates that Notre Dame is the driving force behind the prosecution. The terms that the Notre Dame 88 should accept from Notre Dame are the dismissal of all charges, payment of their legal fees, a written apology from Notre Dame, and a promise from Notre Dame that they will no longer honor pro-abort politicians.

    This of course is in the spirit of Theoden’s reaction to Saruman’s request for “peace”.

    “We will have peace. Yes, we will have peace, we will have peace when you and all your works have perished — and the works of your dark master to whom you would deliver us. You are a liar, Saruman, and a corrupter of men’s hearts. You hold out your hand to me, and I perceive only a finger of the claw of Mordor. Cruel and cold! Even if your war on me was just as it was not, for were you ten times as wise you would have no right to rule me and mine for your own profit as you desired — even so, what will you say of your torches in Westfold and the children that lie dead there? And they hewed Hama’s body before the gates of the Hornburg, after he was dead. When you hang from a gibbet at your window for the sport of your own crows, I will have peace with you and Orthanc. So much for the House of Eorl. A lesser son of great sires am I, but I do not need to lick your fingers. Turn elsewhither. But I fear your voice has lost its charm.”

  • Not to sound like I’m defending Anonymous here, but…. if the ND88 were KNOWINGLY risking arrest, by crossing a line they had been warned not to cross, and if they were clearly told by university authorities that they WOULD be arrested if they persisted in their actions, then they should accept the consequences, plead guilty and serve whatever sentences they get. That’s what other practitioners of this kind of civil disobedience do (or should do, in my opinion). They don’t argue that they are innocent and being persecuted, they acknowledge that they broke the law to call attention to their cause AND they’d gladly do it again. If that means they go to jail, that goes with the territory, doesn’t it?

    That being said, it would be fitting if Fr. Jenkins or other authorities at Notre Dame asked for the charges to be dropped as a gesture of mercy and solidarity with the cause they were espousing.

    All this, of course, presumes that the ND88 knowingly engaged in illegal actions and were clearly warned that they were risking arrest. If it was a case of a LEGAL protest gathering getting out of hand, or of the participants crossing some invisible “line” they hadn’t been told was there, that would be another story completely.

  • Also, the fact that Notre Dame allegedly let other protesters off more easily doesn’t change the nature of the illegal actions committed by the ND88. While it does show that Notre Dame isn’t being consistent in enforcing its supposed rules regarding protests — and that is a significant issue — still, you can’t argue your way out of any other punishment by saying “But someone else got away with it!”

  • “Not to sound like I’m defending Anonymous here, but…. if the ND88 were KNOWINGLY risking arrest, by crossing a line they had been warned not to cross, and if they were clearly told by university authorities that they WOULD be arrested if they persisted in their actions, then they should accept the consequences, plead guilty and serve whatever sentences they get.”

    Only if Notre Dame wishes to be in the same moral category of the segregationists who legally prosecuted people who sat in at restaurants. When one is being punished unjustly, I see no merit in accepting punishment meekly. Make them prove it at trial. Turn the case against the prosecution by making a big stink about it in every forum possible. Make sure that the injustice of the prosecution becomes a cause celebre. Jenkins and his cohorts would love nothing better than the Notre Dame 88 to meekly admit their guilt and for them to accept their punishment like good boys and girls. I am glad that this satisfaction has been denied them by the intestinal fortitude of the Notre Dame 88.

  • “still, you can’t argue your way out of any other punishment by saying “But someone else got away with it!””

    Actually Elaine I have done just that in some of my cases by proving selective prosecution and having judges determine that prosecutors have abused their discretion. It isn’t easy to do, but given fact situations egregious enough, it is possible.

  • “his (Rice’s) primary complaint is not that they were arrested, but that the institution has persisted in pressing charges when they had not done so in previous circumstances, and lied publicly about their reasons for so doing.”

    I understand this and it’s an appropriate question to raise. And, I suppose that by pleading not guilty and fighting the charges every step of the way, the ND88 could bring those two injustices to light. But, at the end of the day, it seems to me that “don’t do the ‘crime’ if you can’t do the time” applies to civil disobedience actions as well.

    Also, for reasons I have explained before, I don’t think civil disobedience that involves deliberately trying to get arrested for trespassing as an attention-getting device is quite in the same category as lunch counter sit-ins. Sit-ins involved people breaking a law that was inherently unjust — a law designed specifically to prevent people of a certain skin color from doing something they had a natural right to do — to show the world just how unjust and ridiculous the law was. Going out of one’s way to break an otherwise JUST law that has nothing directly to do with the injustice being protested (abortion) is different.

  • What is remarkable to me, and what I really just don’t grasp, is *what possible motive* ND could have in continuing with these charges. Fr. Jenkins, for all his limitations, is certainly no dummy, and he, as well as the other members of the senior administration (to say nothing of the Board of Trustees) must realize that ND qua university will not gain anything from this process. It’s not as though Princeton or Duke will suddenly kowtow to the Dome because a few pro-life activists were arrested there. This view can’t seriously be entertained. It’s also only attracting *more* negative press to ND, and further alienating fence-leaning Catholics who were not happy about Obama but were neither entirely supportive of much of the shenanigans and selective (and sometimes politically motivated) outrage expressed at his visit. These Catholics, seeing now ND’s apparent inconsistency of procedure, will now take more darkly a view of the administration than they ever did before. So I don’t see that ND has anything to gain here, while they have much to lose. If I did not already have experience with administrators’ capacities for practical reasoning, these two considerations would make me think that ND *can’t* remove the charges at this point (something Donald denies). The whole situation is just weird.

  • The whole situation is just weird.

    If you posit that Notre Dame’s administration despises the demonstrators and wants their ilk to stay away forever, the effort to humiliate and injure them seems less weird.

  • I suppose I find it self-evident that that strategy is counterproductive *given* the interests of ND, whatever they think of the demonstrators. (Whatever one thinks of the ND88, and I am generally supportive of them, turning them into martyrs for the pro-life cause will hardly have the effect you suggest.) And I suppose that I think the administrators themselves should realize this. But again, never overestimate administrators’ capacities for practical reasoning.

  • Just to be clear: I yield to no one in contempt for how Notre Dame has handled the case; and my opinion of the real motives of the university administration is culpably uncharitable. Nonetheless. . .

    In Indiana, criminal trespass includes entering private property without permission and refusing to leave when requested to do so by the owner or an authorized agent of the owner. If I come to your front door and, say, hector you about joining the Jehovah’s Witnesses; and you ask me to go away; and I refuse: then you can call the cops. I don’t have to climb over a wall or anything like that.

    What possible motive can Notre Dame have for continuing these charges? Notre Dame has only itself to blame for the pickle that it is in, but it may have less freedom of action (pace Mr. McCleary) than people assume (if also more freedom of action than implied in my previous post). The risk of nolle prosse, I think, is that the the judge might react by dismissing the case (rather than just letting things hang). If the case is dismissed or the defendants acquitted, the university (and perhaps the South Bend police) might find themselves in line for a false arrest suit. How plausible this is I don’t know, but it’s what I gather third or fourth hand from lawyers familiar with the case.

    On a more principled level, the university has a legitimate interest in keeping its status as private property. Again, as I understand it, one line of defense by the 88 is that the university campus is in fact open pretty much to anyone, that it amounts to public space where they may legitimately exercise their first amendment rights (and, after all, the university took no action against those demonstrating in favor of the award to Obama). But the university does not in fact let the general public come and go as it pleases. At every home football game the area around the campus is filled with ticket scalpers, but scalpers are not allowed on campus. If the 88 win their point, would the university have welcome in the scalpers?

    (I also wonder if there isn’t some relevance to the Westboro Baptist case. One’s sympathies would be on opposite sides, but there may be a family resemblance in terms or principle. The families of fallen soldiers may have a legitimate complaint against those who obnoxiously interfere with the funerals; and Notre Dame may have a legitimate complaint against intrusion from those who the administration finds, however perversely, obnoxious to itself or its undertakings.)

    I hope the 88 get off, and, while normally I’m not wild about punishment of any kind, I hope the consequences to the university are sufficiently severe to cause some in the administration to rethink the actual values they live by. But in the abstract the university’s case is not entirely without merit.

    I’m also partly sympathetic to what I take to be Elaine Krewer’s point: If I actively court martyrdom and martyrdom is consequently offered to me, I should probably accept it gratefully, not whine about it. But it’s not clear that the 88 were actively courting martyrdom. It seems that many of them really did not think that the university would react in the clumsy, small-minded, militantly graceless way that it did.

  • “The risk of nolle prosse, I think, is that the the judge might react by dismissing the case (rather than just letting things hang).”

    You are confusing apples and oranges. Nolle Prosse is not a dismissal with prejudice. The Defendants could bring a motion to dismiss with prejudice at any time, as could the prosecutors, but nolle prosse is not the same thing. A nolle prosse simply means that the prosecutor is not proceeding with the prosecution. No double jeopardy attaches and the defendants can be recharged at any time. As for a civil suit from the ND88, that could be brought at any time and has little refence to what happens in the criminal case. A perfect example is how OJ Simpson could be found not guilty of the murders and still lose the civil suit over the murders.

  • If I come to your front door and, say, hector you about joining the Jehovah’s Witnesses; and you ask me to go away; and I refuse: then you can call the cops. I don’t have to climb over a wall or anything like that.

    In New York, there is a ‘Trespass’, which is in a submisdemeanor category called a ‘violation’, and ‘Criminal Trespass’. There are three degrees of criminal trespass. For the most part, you have to be inside a building to be charged with ‘criminal trespass’, but you can be charged with the 3d degree criminal trespass if you enter grounds enclosed in some way.

    If I am not mistaken, the crime you describe is, under New York law, [non-criminal] ‘Trespass’. The maximal sentance for trespass is 15 days in the county jail and a three-figure fine. As a rule, the judiciary is quite lax when they are given the discretion, as they are in non-felony cases hereabouts. Then again, a large fraction of the municipal court case load Upstate is heard by lay J.P.’s. A buddy of mine in the state Attorney-General’s office tells me that lay judges are often quite good, but when they are bad they are horrid.

  • This may be getting to be too much inside baseball, and I’m not a very good player.

    Nolle prosse: The risk is that the judge’s reaction would be to dismiss with prejudice, which does happen sometimes. I hadn’t thought about a civil suit–but that’s unlikely on its face; and, anyway, Notre Dame didn’t suffer any damages.

    The Indiana law on criminal trespass is more stringent than what is typical of other states.

  • In regard to a civil suit I was referring to a hypothetical suit by ND88 against Notre Dame.

    I can’t imagine a judge dismissing a criminal case with prejudice based upon a nolle prosse motion by the State, absent a motion filed by either the State or the Defendants to dismiss with prejudice. In a nolle prosse motion the current prosecution and case simply ends because the prosecutor does not wish to proceed. A motion to dismiss with prejudice by the Defendants would have to establish that a successful prosecution was impossible due to some legal defect in the prosecution or that under any possible facts shown at trial no conviction would be possible. That is a very high standard to meet, and I do not see any way in this case that a judge could so find under the existing law and facts of the case.

  • This whole incident caused me to rule out ever applying to Notre Dame, which I seriously considered at one point. While attending a law school fair in New York, I approached the Notre Dame booth and asked the representative, in as neutral a tone as possible, if there was any emphasis on the Catholic nature of the school reflected on its campus, not mentioning that I myself was Catholic. She downplayed the notion, saying something to the effect of “no, it’s not a big deal.”

    “Maybe ND simply wanted to protect its students and faculty. The mob had already shown its penchance for breaking the law — no one was capable of knowing whether the mob would become violent — it is not unheard of. “

    No, indeed not. Recall the brave and truly Catholic students who stood up to and battled the ku klux klan in South Bend in 1924.

    How tragic that Notre Dame now wields nothing but moral cowardice in utilizing secular police power to promote abortion, the political lineage of which is directly traceable back to psychotic white supremacists and eugenicists.