Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Gathering Lies

"My freedom will be taken away," weeps one of the participants in this ad.

Which freedom? Freedom to what? Freedom from what? In what way? By whom? I suspect this freedom uncannily resembles the freedom of Jim Crow-era southern whites.



The organization that threw this garbage together hints at the unbearable repression they have in mind:

They called us liars when we said public schools will teach about gay marriage if its the law--but they do in Massachusetts. Serious religious liberty scholars from Eugene Volokh to Doug Laycock to Robin Wilson acknowledge the central driving idea behind gay marriage--there is no difference between same-sex and opposite sex unions and supporters of marriage are engaging in discrimination if they think differently--will have consequences for the freedoms of traditional faith communities. To pretend otherwise is to be profoundly unserious--if not deceptive--about what gay marriage means.
One by one:
  • Schools in and out of the four states that have legalized gay marriage will, from time to time, find it necessary to "teach about" gay marriage, if only because it is a significant social controversy. What the bigots find troubling with this is left unspecified, and that's probably for the best given the quality of what's to come.
  • The part beginning with "serious religious liberty scholars like ..." is a content-free appeal to authority, which might be interesting, and conceivably even convincing, to anyone who thinks through legal and moral quandaries by leaning on the authority of Eugene Volokh, Doug Laycock, or Robin Wilson. For the rest of us -- including but not limited to those of us who have lived long enough to realize that three lawyers can be lined up to advance any claim with a straight face -- this passage might as well be the confused hammering of a woodpecker on a metal chimney.
  • Mark this brazen distortion: "there is no difference between same-sex and opposite sex unions and supporters of marriage are engaging in discrimination if they think differently." No. The idea is that the laws concerning marriage will not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. The end. What anyone thinks about gays or straights or marriage is not at issue, any more than the legalization of mixed-race marriages requires anyone to think differently about interracial couples. Accordingly ...
  • In general, the "freedoms of traditional faith communities" can fuck off, and in particular, insofar as these "freedoms" rest on legally-enforced inequality, they are the problem, not the solution. Under any law deserving to be followed, individual human beings have rights to which the "freedoms" of "traditional faith communities" must yield in instances of conflict, not vice-versa.
All of this makes a perverse sort of sense: when your side has been exposed as utterly detached from reality, and yet you can't bring yourself to let go, all that remains is lying.

2 comments:

Aimée said...

Freedom to discriminate?

Dale said...

Aimee, if there's more to this "freedom" they're whining about than "the freedom to discriminate," I don't know what it is.