Thursday, August 12, 2010

X-Post: Lifelong Heterosexual Monogamy is Unique and Indispensable.. ..and Rare, Regardless of What Gays Do

In the post American Power: Celebrating Lifelong Heterosexual Monogamy as Unique and Indispensable, Donald sends mixed messages. He says:
I've dealt with these arguments over and over again, but I must say Ross Douthat's piece yesterday was an extremely clever analytical outing. He makes the case that marriage not only is entirely unnatural, but has virtually collapsed as a social institution as well.
While all of that is true, Dr Douglas neglects to say that Ross Douthat's clever analysis consists of points in direct contradiction to much of what Donald has said himself in his dealings with these arguments. Does Dr Douglas no longer believe that heterosexual "marriage is an ancient institution that has always been defined as the union of one man and one woman," or that "lifelong heterosexual monogamy is natural," or that "the nuclear family is the universal, time-tested path to forming families and raising children?" (Quotes taken directly from the Douthat op-ed, right before he argues that each of them is factually incorrect.) I find it pretty hard to believe that Donald actually changed his mind, and thus I find it interesting that he so easily glosses over Douthat contradicting his oft-argued beliefs. Apparently though, Donald finds Douthat's conclusion worth accepting (or more than likely, pretending to accept) Douthat's arguments against much of what Douglas has been saying on the subject of gay marriage for so long.
The clincher is the last couple of paragraphs where he describes marriage is a civilizational ideal that's "unique" and "indispensible," and concludes:
That ideal is still worth honoring, and still worth striving to preserve. And preserving it ultimately requires some public acknowledgment that heterosexual unions and gay relationships are different: similar in emotional commitment, but distinct both in their challenges and their potential fruit.
Here's the thing... I don't know how many people, even over here on the other side of the debate, disagree with too much of that. Heterosexual marriage is an institution worth honoring and preserving. Heterosexual relationships and gay unions--(See what Douthat did there, and I played the opposite way? Sneaky bastard...) Heterosexual relationships and unions and gay relationships and unions ARE different, with distinct challenges and potential fruits for each.

The place to honor and preserve heterosexual marriage is in one's faith and according to one's familial moral and cultural traditions, not as a matter of law. It is not the place of the US government to hold one set of relationships and unions, challenges, fruits and all, above the other, challenges, fruits and all, particularly absent a compelling legal reason to do so, and especially when doing so would violate another civilizational and constitutional ideal concerning equal protection under the law and the innate worth and dignity of every person.
I've read around the horn quite a bit, and Douthat was certainly successful in firing up the masses. With the exception of the Steve Chapman piece (excerpted with additional commentary at Protein Wisdom), it's mostly howling gay bloggers who're up in arms about it.
Howling gay bloggers? Memeorandum lists The Daily Dish, Matthew Yglesias, Washington Monthly, GayPatriot, Prairie Weather, TBogg, Hullabaloo, The Awl, Truth Wins Out, Left in the West, Patterico's Pontifications, INSTAPUTZ, First Draft and Sadly, No!. Not that it matters (or at least, not that it should matter, even to Dr Douglas) but are most of the writers of those blogs gay (let along howling gay, whatever that is)? I count Sullivan, GayPatriot, and TruthWinsOut, I think, but I don't know that any of the others are... (And then you have to wonder whether Douglas is even intending to be literal, or whether he's just trying to slur the bloggers with whom he disagrees by suggesting that they're gay. It wouldn't be the first time he did that, for certain...)

And I wouldn't say that these bloggers are "up in arms" about Douthat's post, any more than I'd suggest that Douglas is in bed with Douthat; they just disagree with some or all of what he wrote, no different than Dr Douglas agreeing with somewhere between some and all of it.
Glenn Greenwald's piece appears to have little familiarity with actually law (or at least moral foundations of the law), but Andrew Sullivan in fact wrote a pretty good essay.
Great, now Douglas is crawling into bed with Andrew Sullivan, too. What is this world coming to?
Click on memeorandum to sample some of the responses.
I strongly urge you to do exactly that if you're interested in this issue. Donald Douglas' characterizations of how these other bloggers replied and what they said bears little resemblance to the truth in my opinion (though like Donald, I thought Sullivan's piece was pretty good). Click on the memeorandum link, read the posts, and make up your own mind.
And I suppose it's a good thing that Sully and Rick Ellensburg et al. are pushing for marriage, considering how the gay hookup culture --- despite its murderous health and safety risks --- is still pretty much the rage, at Gawker.
The hookup culture in general is morally pretty bad (as well as murderous and unsafe), Don... It surely ain't limited to teh gay. Pretending that it's a gay thing, rather than a people thing, is kinda cheesy...

American Nihilist X-post

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