Raleigh’s News & Observer published an insightful column Sunday:
Every argument against gay marriage is rooted in prejudice. There is no compelling state interest that should trump the gay community’s demand for equal rights.
Opponents of same-sex marriage offer two lines of attack.
The first is religious. The Bible (and the Quran), they say, casts homosexuality as a sin. That’s true. But the Bible also suggests that the world is 6,000 years old and offers scores of rules we blithely ignore. I don’t believe anyone wants to start executing adulterers (Leviticus 20:10).
If most believers followed the Bible literally, their rejection of homosexuality would truly reflect their faith. Instead, they cite its prohibition because it confirms their prejudices and fears.
Writer Peder Zane should be proud, but I should add he missed another great insight near the end of his piece:
The second line of attack involves the slippery slope. If we approve gay marriage, opponents say, then everything will be permissible.
Warren expressed this rationale in a December interview with the Web site Beliefnet.com.
“I’m opposed to redefinition of a 5,000-year definition of marriage [as being between a man and a woman],” he explained. “I’m opposed to having a brother and sister being together and calling that marriage. I’m opposed to an older guy marrying a child and calling that marriage. I’m opposed to one guy having multiple wives and calling that marriage.”
In fairness, his appeal to 5,000 years of history is not without weight. Social structures do not arise and endure willy-nilly but because they satisfy basic societal needs. They also change over time as they conflict with evolving needs and sensibilities.
A commenter called him out:
The author of this article and the editor who approved are both clueless! The argument that it’s the way we have always done done it was used to justify slavery and has been used to suppress womens rights and now to suppress the rights of people who are born gay. It seems there is an element of society which needs to define it self by what it can offer but buy what it wants to deny others. Shame on you!