So begins most "traditional" marriage ceremonies in Western culture for as long as anyone can remember. Now we are told such exclusivity of preserving marriage for men and women "discriminates" against people of the same sex who wish to "marry" each other. Some forms of discrimination are good, because they send a signal and provide an example that certain behavior is to be preferred over other behaviors for the betterment of society.
That a president of the United States would feel compelled, for whatever reason, to make a public statement that marriage should be reserved for men and women is a leading indicator of the moral state of the union. Imagine Calvin Coolidge saying such a thing, even in the "Roaring '20s." He might as well have stated the equally obvious that the sun rises in the east.
Today, right and wrong, an objective concept rooted in unchanging truth, has been dismissed in favor of the imposed rulings of federal judges guided by their own whims and opinion polls (various polls show the country equally split between those who oppose same-sex marriage and those who would allow it). We are now adrift to sort out our choices based on a weather vane principle: whichever way the wind blows is where we'll go.
When nothing is either true or false and all decisions about life and morals are based on personal choices and whatever new "trend" happens to capture our attention, we lose our moral sense, which, like an immune system, was established to protect us from cultural, as well as biological viruses.
The charge is made that President Bush is "again" using the issue of same-sex marriage to rally his base. But it is not the president who has made this a political issue. Those who would melt the glue of marriage, which has held societies together for millennia, are using the legal and political system for their own ends. In every state where same-sex marriage has been on the ballot, it has been decisively defeated. But like the war in Iraq, the "insurgents" in the culture wars believe all they must do is hang on long enough and the majority will surrender because protracted warfare interferes with our pursuit of pleasure and material consumption.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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