…I happened upon this great post about marriage. There are no citations, and being a natural skeptic, I’ll take a lot of it with a grain of salt until proven. However, I find the conclusions to ring true, regardless of whether you want to quibble about the origination of wearing white at a wedding, or the church’s medieval attitude towards marriage in the Middle Ages. There really is no “tradition” that doesn’t evolve as a response to cultural pressures. We change our attitudes, and traditions change with us. As the writer says:
Because, honestly, which traditional definition of marriage do we want our Constitution to protect?
…The one from Book of Genesis when family values meant multiple wives and concubines?
…Or the marriages of the Middle Ages when women were traded like cattle and weddings were too bawdy for church?
…Since this is America, should we preserve marriage as it existed in 1776 when arranged marriages were still commonplace?
…Or the traditions of 1850 when California became a state and marriage was customarily between one man and one woman-or-girl of age 11 and up?
…Or are we really seeking to protect a more modern vision of traditional marriage, say from the 1950s when it was illegal for whites to wed blacks or Hispanics?
…Or the traditional marriage of the late 1960s when couples were routinely excommunicated for marrying outside their faith?
Much of the brouhaha surrounding gay marriage is contrived by those with agendas, primarily the religious with pure unadulterated bigotry at their base. This would not be a controversial subject but for a group of people with prejudices like our dear friend Gideon. Discrimination is discrimination is discrimination, and layering “sanctity”, and “tradition”, and “the institution of marriage” over it does nothing to clear the stink of hatred for someone you find different from you purely because they are different. We saw the same bullshit with laws preventing interracial marriage, and today we don’t give it a second thought.
I predict in 10 or 20 years, we’ll look back on this while we’re still marching in our “Atheist Pride” parades and wonder what all the controversy was about.
Thanks to Archie Levine. (And I know that’s three posts in a row on the same subject, but it all needs to be said.)