A while ago in response to discussions on Triple J’s Hack regarding same sex marriage, I wrote the following on their facebook wall;
“As far as I can tell, there’s no valid argument against it and the whole debate is a waste of time when other matters are more pressing.
Firstly, some people argued from a religious stance. Before you can advocate the law of a god, you must definitively prove its existence as beyond doubt, then that this entity has authority over our actions and then that it has laws against same-sex marriage. I follow Aust laws because I’m aware of the police enforcement, courts and jails. No god is proven beyond a doubt and religious people prove this themselves by fighting over gods – even different versions of the same one! As Christianity was pointed out in the discussions; in that book, that version of a god seems okay with slavery, incest, rape, murder (for various reasons), ownership of women. Hardly a good moral code for modern times.
Secondly, one person argued the biology – that two people of the same sex cannot pass genes down to a child. By that logic, all people who are infertile are just as unsuitable for marriage. Of course, this is laughable, so it should be equally so for same-sex marriage.
Thirdly, it’s just plain sexist. If you say if he can’t marry him or she cannot marry her because of their gender, you’re making a value judgement based entirely on their gender. If you told a woman she wasn’t allowed to drive a truck or be a CEO because she was a woman, you’re being sexist. How is it different to say she cannot marry the love of her life because she’s a woman?”
The only response I received there (indeed circular and tedious as it was) pleaded to the same argument as yet another of Potholer54’s nominees for the upcoming Golden Crockoduck, in this case, I’m referring to Born Homosexual? by Emptywithoujesus.
To make a short sidestep, Mr. emptywithoutjesus comments that male homosexuality is “especially” wrong, compared to female homosexuality, which exposes the man as a hypocrite as well as saying a lot for his own sexual taste. If he truly was against homosexuality, gender would be irrelevant – coming back to the third point of my criticism above.
Anyway, he and the fellow who argued against my comments above both make the same ludicrous leap in their vacuum of valid reasoning; they play the floodgate argument.
Basically, they argue as to where the line should be drawn if we accept gay relationships. Should we not, so they reason, allow too incest, bestiality, polygamy etc etc etc…
All hell will break loose if we relax the strenuous rules on acceptable relationships.
What a load of bullshit.
Again it’s really an argument surrounding point three of my quote above. Anyone in favour of removing sexism from marriage isn’t in favour of allowing variants of marriage.
The easiest two to comment on are incest and bestiality. The former would necessarily remain sexist (ie. to avoid inbreeding) thus incompatible to the actual cause being debated and the latter cannot happen because other species are incapable of establishing a humanistic relationship.
Ultimately the argument we are making is that two out-breeding humans should be allowed to have a recognised relationship. That’s it!
We could counter their argument with a similar floodgate argument in suggesting that if we accept sexism within relationships, what’s stopping us from racism as well? Of course they don’t want that, nor does anyone want incest or bestiality. Making such arguments only demonstrates that such people don’t really have a valid argument to make.
Mr. emptywithoutjesus and the commenter on FB are allowed to simply dislike gay relationships (however, I find it telling when people such emptywithoutjesus demonstrate homophobia against male homosexuality but seem lenient towards lesbians). It’s not up to anyone else what a person feels about certain relationships. Either character may not feel inclined towards certain races or even personality types in potential partners – that’s all part of the game of love.
However, no-one has the right to utilise sexist arguments to suppress others. We should be beyond such things. In any case, such debates require strong cases and neither individuals provide one.
Emptywithoutjesus builds his case on the Bible. His argument demands addressing the first point I make above. You simply cannot draw on authority without a compelling case for it’s accuracy. He even admits that different versions of his authority don’t necessarily agree on homosexuality (in the version he reads out, it’s instead the broad term “effeminate” which could therefore condemn any bloke who doesn’t drool over a V8). Before we live by a version of the word of “god” we need first to know that the certain god is the one and only god, second to know for certain that the view held in the documents truly reflect the word of that certain god and third to know for certain that this god has both the power and will do punish us for going against these documents.
We’re along way from that conclusion and arguably have proven well enough that the story of Genesis is pure fable, thus undoing the need for Jesus as our saviour and the whole premise of the Abrahamic faiths. At best, if the philosophies of the man recognised as Jesus in the New Testament match with the wider morals of society, they could be embraced for that fact alone and if not, studied as part of our history.
Whatever the case, it is not a compelling case for continuing sexism in relationship acceptance and the floodgate argument is just silly. It’s not even an argument, really against personal faith / idology – only in pushing those personal (arguably baseless) personal beliefs on others.