Thursday Highlights

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15 comments

  1. Quote placement as commentary, close to worst case scenario.

    Nieubuhr works for “the other team,” huh? Nice analysis.

    From your SSM link:

    Research shows that homosexual relationships are fundamentally dysfunctional on many levels, and “marriage” as we know it isn’t something they can achieve, or even desire.

    Is that something you believe?

    Again, imagine for a moment the tables turned, and the “club” doing the same regarding Mr Obama. OK or not?

    Again, not.

  2. Boonton says:

    And why should we trust research? I’ve often heard people say things like ‘people should have a license to have kids’….usually after seeing some poorly behaved child in public being poorly handled by his parents.

    Imagine if a bunch of liberals announced the gov’t would prohibit certain married couples from having kids based on ‘research’….’ohhh research shows married 18 yr old couples who are unemployed tend to make for stressful parents….you can’t have kids please apply again in a year or two’. Or for that matter getting married….’ohhh research shows older women who marry younger men tend to produce dysfunctional marriages, you can’t get married’.

    Who cares about the research and why should they? Given that 50% of marriages end indivorce the ‘research’ shows having a successful marriage is about as likely as flipping a coin and landing on tails. Shouldn’t the individuals decide for themselves whether or not to pay attention to such research and decide whether or not they should be guided by it?

  3. Mark says:

    JA,
    You take issue with:

    Only today I have found a passage in a Christian writer where he recommends his own version of Christianity on the fround that ‘only such a faith can outlast the death of old cultures and the birth of new civilisations’. You see the little rift? ‘Believe this, not because it is true, but for some other reason.’ That’s the game,

    ?

    On SSM, you ask what I believe. I do believe that stable monagomous homosexual relationships are possible. But that, primarily for men, that is rarely sought, i.e., that the numbers that desire that are far below the numbers who support SSM and that therefore the contention that there are ulterior motives, such as this is a proxy for more generic social approval is likely.

    On “again not”, is that purity or harm? I’d suggest … purity.

    Boonton,
    I’m afraid I’m unclear on what link/topic you are remarking.

  4. Boonton says:

    The SSM link that JA just cited regarding the research.

    Again I ask so what? If only 20% of gay men can make a stable gay marriage so what? AS for legalized marriage being a ‘proxy’ for social acceptance….what the hell does that mean? A proxy is something that stands in for something else. Are you saying that some gays might cling to legal status as a substitute for family, friend or church acceptance or approval? Ok so what? Society is free to disapprove or approve regardless of legal status.

    If there are gays who get married in order to find some substitute for social approval it is primarily themselves that they are hurting just like the straight person to marries for a dubious reason (such as ‘sticking it’ to a parent who may not approve of their mate).

  5. Mark says:

    Boonton,
    And if it’s 3%? Does that matter? I don’t understand what you don’t understand about “by proxy.” I’m saying that most are wanting gay union legalized defined as “marriage”, but don’t actually want to be married or have marriage for themselves. It’s a proxy. They don’t want marriage, They want something else, which may possibly approval, which as you note cannot be granted by such legal means anyhow.

  6. Jewish Atheist,

    Is “…in this case…” not explicit enough? I don’t waste words.

  7. Mark,

    You take issue with:

    Only today I have found a passage in a Christian writer where he recommends his own version of Christianity on the fround that ‘only such a faith can outlast the death of old cultures and the birth of new civilisations’. You see the little rift? ‘Believe this, not because it is true, but for some other reason.’ That’s the game,

    ?

    What?

    I do believe that stable monagomous homosexual relationships are possible. But that, primarily for men, that is rarely sought, i.e., that the numbers that desire that are far below the numbers who support SSM and that therefore the contention that there are ulterior motives, such as this is a proxy for more generic social approval is likely.

    Two separate points. First, even if a smaller fraction of gay men than straight men want to get married, that shouldn’t be relevant to the legalization discussion. Second, of course “generic [general?] social approval” is one of the goals of the gay marriage movement. That’s a good thing.

    Kevin,

    Is “…in this case…” not explicit enough? I don’t waste words.

    I appreciate your precision. Maybe a little will rub off on Mark. 😉 Even “in this case,” though, it seems a little much to say Niebuhr is batting for the other team. Whatever, though. It’s not really my fight.

  8. Boonton says:

    And if it’s 3%? Does that matter?

    Thought experiment, suppose it is discovered 97% of Italian men between the ages of 19-23 who marry American women who are older than 30 cheat and quickly divorce their spouses. Should the state refuse to recognize such marriages based on this ‘research’? Assume for the sake of the argument that the research is perfectly valid. How many hetrosexuals have to botch marriage before you would give up yours?

    I don’t understand what you don’t understand about “by proxy.” I’m saying that most are wanting gay union legalized defined as “marriage”, but don’t actually want to be married or have marriage for themselves. It’s a proxy. They don’t want marriage, They want something else, which may possibly approval, which as you note cannot be granted by such legal means anyhow.

    Again if you marry someone because you want something ‘other than marriage’ you’re setting yourself up to get burned and burned bad. Given this fact, I’m kind of perplexed at conservatives who make this argument. Are you telling me you understand the interests of gays better than gays themselves? Are you telling me you are able to safeguard their interests better than they are themselves?

    Imagine the top case, imagine if some liberal responded by proposing a law that required 30+ women seeking to marry young Italian stallions to be interviewed by a therapist. The right would be screaming that the state need not be meddling in family matters.

  9. Mark says:

    Boonton,
    It seems to me you don’t understand what I mean by proxy. I’m not claiming anybody wants to be married “for other reasons.” My claim (on the proxy front) is that many gays are seeking SSM without intention of getting married themselves. That is the marriage is a proxy, it is not something they seek in actuality, but are seeking it for another reason.

    What is the number was actually 0%. That no gays actually want to get married but they are campaigning for legally calling the unions between gays marriage. You’d wonder “why” do they seek this legal right to which they don’t intend to avail themselves. Why is this important. It is not because they want marriage so there must be another reason. That is, SSM is a proxy for something else … something which they find to be less palatable to the public at large, but which they feel will be easier to get once they get this thing.

    Now, expand that 0% to just a slightly larger number. If it is 3-6% as it seems to be statistically, it seems to me one might ask if the 94–97% of the rest of the gay (male) population campaigning for SSM for another reason?

    JA,
    On the quoted passage, I’m unclear why you found it out of bounds to strongly condemn that idea.

    Of course the proportion matters. If it is truly a tiny proportion, why all the noise? Why does it matter.

    And

    “generic [general?] social approval” is one of the goals of the gay marriage movement. That’s a good thing.

    Though law? Isn’t that kinda like separation of church and state?

  10. Boonton says:

    I think you’re beating around the bush Mark. If gays have marriage but don’t get married then it exists only as a legal possibility that is rarely invoked. Like 90 yr old women who marry 18 yr, society would never approve despite it’s legality. I think this is what you’re trying to get at..if gay marriage is legal society would approve more of gay relationships even if gays don’t actually get married. But as you can see in the above example, societal approval exists independent of legal status. Society today is a lot more approving of gay relationships than it was 20years ago regardless of gay marriage’s legality.

    If large numbers of gays do get married and do at least as well as straights….well again so what? What business of that is yours or mine?

  11. Boonton says:

    Now, expand that 0% to just a slightly larger number. If it is 3-6% as it seems to be statistically, it seems to me one might ask if the 94–97% of the rest of the gay (male) population campaigning for SSM for another reason?

    Well on the one hand there are selfish reasons. Many gay males probably would like the option just as Joe the Plumber wants the option to have the $250K business with the Bush rather than Reagan tax brackets. Also, like Joe, many might view this as a long term goal even if they don’t ever achieve it.

    Then there’s the principled reasons, they feel marriage should include their relationships, at least from the legal perspective. This is similiar too the many people who were against the bans on interracial marriage even though people overwhelmingly choose to marry within their own racial group.

    Speaking of which, I wouldn’t make too much of the stats on gay marriage just yet. Of course there’s going to be a drop off after the ‘early adopters’ rush to the courthouse door. The legal implications of it in many states are still uncertain so it shouldn’t be surprising that many are taking a wait and see approach. I think what you’re going to see in the long run are marriage rates for gay men below the heterosexual rate and rates for gay women above it. I’m skeptical, though, that it’s going to be 0-3% for the long run. You forget that if only a tiny portion of a population gets married in a year (say 1%) that makes the odds that a person in the population will get married over the course of, say, 30 years, a lot more than 1% (you can whip out the tables and give me the stat here….I gotta catch my train!)

  12. Mark:

    Of course the proportion matters. If it is truly a tiny proportion, why all the noise? Why does it matter?

    Did it matter that the overwhelming majority of black people wanted to marry black people and white people wanted to marry white people?

    I’m pretty sure a higher percentage of gays want to marry each other today than straights wanted to marry members of other races in the 60s. What matters is not how many people we are discriminating against, it’s whether we should be discriminating against them in the first place.

  13. Mark says:

    To both of y’all,
    Recall my position is that I’m against laws for and against SSM (or any sort of marraige) at the federal or state levels.

    So I’d be “with” the gays on prop 8 in CA, but I’d also be against a proposal legalising SSM at a state (or federal level).

    I’m against both parties on this one, I guess.

    JA,
    The question isn’t about the majority of black/black black/white marriages being allowed to marry, it’s about whether the state calls it marriage, which is a different thing.

    Black and white couples couldn’t live together at all, which is a far cry from what is being sought now.

    Boonton,
    My impression was that in Canada, which has had it for some times the rates were around 6%. As I’ve noted before, my rough calculation puts that number as on the par with people held in slavery in the US today.

  14. Boonton says:

    My impression was that in Canada, which has had it for some times the rates were around 6%. As I’ve noted before, my rough calculation puts that number as on the par with people held in slavery in the US today.

    6% of the population is in a gay marriage? If gays are 5-10% of the population (with 10% being a figure most conservatives dismiss as too high) you’re talking about a 60% utilization rate of marriage…even higher if gays divorce which means that some single gays now were once married at some point in their lives.

    Or do you mean 6% of the gay population which, if it’s like 5% of the total population, is a much smaller number. Either way I’m not seeing the argument that underutilization of marriage by a particular cohort merits limiting access to marriage for them.

  15. Mark says:

    The number was 6% of the 4-6%, which puts as I noted earlier the number of people desiring marriage of this sort, at about the same as the number who are illegally held in slavery.

    The argument is that its a proxy. That is, Germany didn’t invade the Sudentland because it really desired the Sudentland, but it was a proxy, or a pawn in a larger set piece. Similar remarks might be made of the Russian Federation and Georgia regarding their Ossetian independence (and the rhetoric regarding Kosovan independence).

    And as I noted, I’m against state regulations forbidding gay marriage and also state regulations permitting them. These things should be decided at a more local level.