by Reid Fitzsimons
Notwithstanding whatever newspaper it was that declared an end to commentary on homosexual marriage, the consequences of the recent Supreme Court paean to love will reverberate for years to come, and it won’t be limited to fabulous rainbow light shows at the White House and guys and girls gaily prancing about in leather thongs.
But before considering the consequences, I admit I’m a little confused about this Supreme Court decision. Homosexual marriage has essentially been legal for decades, and any residual barriers were correctly deconstructed in 2003 with the Lawrence versus Texas decision disallowing anti-sodomy laws. That is, of course, if marriage is defined as an association of people characterized by love (with an implication of the sexual kind as compared, for example, to the love of a good cigar, except in the case of Bill Clinton) and enduring commitment. Additionally nothing has prevented homosexuals from enjoying the more superficial ceremonial trappings, be it flowing wedding gowns or an expensive reception adorned with massive floral arrangements. Even securing an ordained but pretend Christian minister to bless the wedding has been no more difficult than catching Hillary Clinton in a lie. Really- does anyone actually know someone who cares how people associate themselves on a private and personal level? The concept of something being nobody else’s business is in many ways one of the underpinnings of freedom.
Before we continue, however, we need to reminisce about those heady days of the late 1960s and into the 70s. The declarations of the progressives of the time that love and commitment did not require a slip of paper from the government was not a particularly bad concept, especially for the millions of us who, as my father used to say, shacked up at one time or another. But, as life, times, and immutable progressive positions evolved, the fierce anti-establishment sentiments were cast asunder as youthful pseudo-idealistic hippy hair turned grey and bank accounts and prostates swelled. All of a sudden they were the establishment, and they learned to dig it, man. Of the numerous seductive manifestations of wielding establishment power, passing judgment proved to be especially sweet, actually catnip for all who covet power regardless of philosophy. And what better way to dispense authority than to offer previously oppressive slips of paper confirming approval. The masses, vacuous and benumbed by glittering materialism, yearned for the blessing of the State as a hungry infant craves a nipple dripping with milk.
Marriage in the manner of love and commitment (and the less poetic concept of obligation) has mutated into an overwhelming desire, indeed demand, for endorsement by the State. And, as with all things progressive, the idea of live and let live is not simply unacceptable, it is anathema. One must love and cherish and celebrate whatever progressive deity happens to be trending now, or there will be judgment and it will be harsh. The recent Supreme Court ode to love has brought us one step closer to the progressive ideal- everyone goose-stepping in conformity down the liebestrasse attired in faux-military/bdsm costumes.
Those opposed to homosexual marriage had a sincere and solid argument in that if the meaning of a word or concept is significantly altered then there is no meaning at all. Hence the specter of polygamy understandably presented itself. In order to comprehend this dynamic from the pro-homosexual perspective one needs to remember there are three underlying principles of progressivism in regards to life in general- if it feels good it is good, if someone wants something they therefore deserve it, and if something is inconvenient its existence should be terminated, and life is fair only when someone else pays to achieve these tenets. With this in mind, most progressives couldn’t care less if three people are married, or 50 or 100. But disingenuousness was required to deflect objections based on polygamy, lest there be bad PR. Generally the technique is to avoid the topic as if it is too ridiculous to consider. Hence three years ago when the White House press secretary was specifically asked about Obama’s opinion on polygamy the question was ignored. Does anyone believe, however, that our progressive hipster President would oppose anything that’s trendy and on the edge, like out of sight?
For a “man on the street” perspective a couple recent Letters to the Editor of the LA Times were revealing. Vince from Long Beach opined, “The headline (“Polygamy comes next,” Opinion, June 30) implies that polygamy will soon be legalized as liberals take over the country. While complete nonsense, such statements are very effective politically. Fear-mongering like this has been the mainstay of conservative discourse…” Bob from Culver City wrote, “(conservative columnist) Goldberg says polygamy is the next objective of the culture warriors. Well, I'm a social justice warrior and I have never heard the subject mentioned, much less discussed, until I read Goldberg's column.” We can reasonably deduce Vince and Bob are run of the mill progressives. I wonder if we can hold Vince to his unequivocal statement that legalizing polygamy is complete non-sense once the culture masters (whoever it is that determines things like white privilege, micro- aggressions, what is proper to think and say, etc) declare homosexual marriage traditionalists to be hate-filled polygamyphobes. Regarding Bob the Social Justice Warrior, as Seinfeld said to Kramer, I didn’t know it was possible to not know that people can wake up from comas.
The Obergefell decision sounds less like a serious judicial opus and more like a Valentine’s Day card regularly priced at 50 cents at the $Tree. Despite the language on par with a love letter by an anguished teen, one might ask: how dare the Eichmanns’ and Himmlers’ of the Supreme Court confer the State’s warm fuzzy blessing upon Ken and Kevin but not sanctify the loving vows of Jennifer, Justin, and Pat. Moments after Obergefell, a tiresomely predictable decision, was decreed a recently minted PhD named Frederick DeBoer was published at Politico declaring the perfectly obvious: “the moral reasoning behind society’s rejection of polygamy remains just as uncomfortable and legally weak as same-sex marriage opposition was until recently” and “Now that we’ve defined that love and devotion and family isn’t driven by gender alone, why should it be limited to just two individuals?” No waiting for the dust to settle on this subject.
In contrast, a longtime homosexual marriage crusader Jonathan Rauch, also writing in Politico and referencing the Deboer’s article, made an impassioned though somewhat vapid argument in opposition to polygamy. Citing statistics and studies, he essentially tried to prove that polygamy is not in the best interests of society. Despite his apparent intellectual status and association with the Brookings Institute (which to me is a dubious credential) he misses the whole point- this has nothing whatsoever to do with some ill-defined larger societal good, this is about people with enough time and money who either crave State approbation for their personal choices or enjoy the power associated with dispensing of such. If this poor guy sticks with this position he’s going to discover what it’s like to suggest the phrase “settled science” is an oxymoron at an Al Gore fundraiser.
Polygamy is going to be the next progressive sine qua non cause; one only needs to omit the number mentioned in Obergetell, i.e. “In forming a marital union people become something greater than they once were.” It’s as simple and obvious as that, but I am going to go one step further. Our cultural climate today is positively bursting with transgender, inter-gender, bi-gender, etc titillation, whatever someone at any given moment happens to think they are. So, in the spirit of not being a number fascist, wouldn’t it be reasonable for people to marry themselves?
All clever and witty similes aside, my initial opposition to homosexual marriage was lukewarm. The argument of diluting the institution of marriage was intellectually compelling, but not visceral. Also I never really grasped the concept that one’s sexual proclivities, not of any particular concern otherwise, somehow imbues them with a kind of supra-legal status. What turned me was the militancy of the homosexual lobby. I never succumbed to the cultural pressure to abhor George W. Bush, but soon after 911 he made the unfortunate statement, "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists," momentarily satisfying words but ultimately ugly ones. The homosexual/progressive powers latched on to this mentality with vigor and have never let go. Hence some of the kindest, most giving people I know, including my spouse, being Christians have been subjected to unrelenting and never repudiated vitriol. It become apparent talk of love was a fabrication, a means to an end, which will be unfolding in the near future. This is not conspiracy theorizing, but a realization that very soon an activist homosexual couple is going to demand a marriage in a traditional Christian church and, upon refusal, sue it. With Obergetell serving as a legal assault weapon the outcome is certain- and vengeance is ours saith the homosexual/progressive establishment.
If you haven’t read the 141-word summation of the Supreme Court in Obergetell you should, it’s pretty awful- as if Kennedy and his four cohorts were trying to obfuscate the fact that their legal reasoning, if any, was completely overshadowed by their passion for the cause. One line in particular impressed me- “Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions.” The power of the State- make war, collect taxes, and cure loneliness. Finally the Supreme Court has found its true calling, a black-robed emotional support group.