Ignoring a danger to liberty

Posted: Jun 06, 2006 12:05 AM

So, essentially, the argument in opposition to a federal marriage amendment comes down to this: sex trumps God.

Sex trumps religious liberty. Sex trumps the well-being of children. Sex trumps personal conscience.

Sex trumps the Constitution.

By forcing court-ordered same-sex “marriage” on the rest of us, political activists pushing the homosexual agenda will compel the great majority of American citizens and religious groups to ignore their deepest spiritual convictions, and effectively embrace—at the point of a legal shotgun—a homosexual definition of matrimony.

And, in doing so, these same advocates will force open the door for polygamy and countless other redefinitions of the term. Marriage, having ceased to become what it is, will effectively become nothing at all.

Mission accomplished.

Then, on to the next mission: search out and destroy any church or religious institution that doesn’t embrace homosexual behavior.

Twenty-three years ago, the courts took away Bob Jones University’s tax exemptions, in response to school rules prohibiting interracial dating and marriage. Though the arguments equating homosexual behavior and race hold no water whatsoever, it would be no great stretch for those same courts to de-exempt, say, a Bible college that outlaws homosexual dating and other behavior. Already, parents in Massachusetts who object to the teaching of pro-homosexual messages in their children’s public schools have been told they have no say. Same-sex “marriage” is legal in their state, a judge told them; why shouldn’t teachers promote it in the classroom? 

Scott Savage, a Quaker and librarian at Ohio State University, is only the latest in a long line of college faculty and staff members all over the country to find his job and reputation hanging by a thread, merely for questioning the politically-correct, pro-homosexual status quo. Does anyone really think judicially mandated same-sex “marriage” is going to lessen the number or kind of allegations (bigotry, sexual harassment) that Savage and other conscientious students and educators are being forced to endure?

The Hobson’s choice made by Catholic Charities Boston (to discontinue its work, rather than arrange adoptions for same-sex couples) illustrates the kind of pressure more and more religious-based organizations will face once states hand over their legal keys to the homosexual activists.

And the case of Pastor Ake Green—arrested in his native Sweden for daring to preach a sermon in his own church on what the Bible says about homosexual behavior—gives an ominous preview of coming attractions, once religious liberty falls afoul of the homosexual movement’s aggressive intolerance—an intolerance demanding religious liberty give way to the homosexual agenda.

That intolerance is building like a tsunami, just off the shores of federal law. It’s all well and good for some United States senators to mount a high horse, wrap themselves in the flag, and sidestep their responsibilities, grandly announcing that marriage amendments should be handled at the state level. They know that no matter how many citizens approve such amendments, leftist federal judges—urged on by the ACLU and radical homosexual advocates—will continue to try to nullify the referendums.

Furthermore, the precedent of federal protection of marriage is long established.  Western states like Arizona and Utah had to proscribe polygamy in their constitutions to come into the union. This was in the 19th and 20th centuries, as part of the Republican national platform.

Soon enough, what’s left of marriage will be engulfed by politically-correct edicts.

It’s amazing to realize how much has come to hinge on this amendment, and in such a short time. Once, and not so long ago, religious freedom was understood as a priority – indeed, as the fundamental right protected by the Constitution. But that was back when Divine directives were acknowledged as both prescient and legal precedent; the horrors of persecution weren’t so far removed but that people—even judges—recognized how precious it is, this freedom to preach and pray.

Even those who had no real intention of putting God before salacious satisfaction understood that, in sidestepping thousands of years of holy revelation and moral conviction, they were deliberately choosing “the dark side.” They recognized their hypocrisy, in Matthew Arnold’s famous phrase, as “the tribute vice pays to virtue.” 

These days, vice is widely regarded as the virtue, and it’s receiving tributes galore from judges, academes, actors, and even pastors too besotted with the glories of humanism to recognize the freedoms slipping fast through their fingers.

The problems with same-sex “marriage” are myriad—the emotional implications for children, the permanent physical and psychological dangers for those engaging in homosexual behavior, the structural cracks in society, the precedent for government intrusion in profoundly personal arenas.

But even the most sobering of these social ripples pales beside the very real threat that court-decreed homosexual “marriage” poses for the future of religious liberty in America. 

The couples themselves can talk all they like about love and benefits. But what they really want isn’t marriage at all. 

It’s a divorce of Americans from their most basic freedom.