Bill Murchison

You really can't have "gay marriage," you know, irrespective of what a court or a legislature may say.

You can have something some people call gay marriage because to them the idea sounds worthy and necessary, but to say a thing is other than it is, is to stand reality on its head, hoping to shake out its pockets.

Such is the supposed effect of the Iowa Supreme Court's declaration last week that gays and heterosexuals enjoy equal rights to marital bliss. Nope. They don't and won't, even if liberal Vermont follows Iowa's lead.

The human race -- sorry ladies, sorry gents -- understands marriage as a compact reinforcing social survival and projection. It has always been so. It will always be so, even if every state Supreme Court pretended to declare that what isn't suddenly is. Life does not work in this manner.

The supposed redefinition of the Great Institution is an outgrowth of modern hubris and disjointed individualism. "What I say goes!" has become our national philosophy since the 1960s. One appreciates the First Amendment right to make such a claim. Nonetheless, no such boast actually binds unless it corresponds with the way things are at the deepest level, human as well as divine. Surface things can change. Not the deep things, among them human existence.

A marriage -- a real one -- brings together man and woman for mutual society and comfort, but also, more deeply, for the long generational journey to the future. Marriage, as historically defined, across all religious and non-religious demarcations, is about children -- which is why a marriage in which the couple deliberately repudiates childbearing is so odd a thing, to put the matter as generously as possible.

A gay "marriage" (never mind whether or not the couple tries to adopt) is definitionally sterile -- barren for the purpose of extending the generations for purposes vaster than any two people, (including people of opposite sexes), can envision.

Current legal prohibitions pertaining to something called "gay marriage" don't address the condition called homosexuality or lesbianism. A lesbian or homosexual couple is free to do pretty much as they like, so long as it doesn't "like" too much the notion of remaking other, older ideas about institutions made, conspicuously, for others. Marriage, for instance.


Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
 
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