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Hay(worth) Is For Horses

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Homosexuality does not lead to bestiality. However, the institutionalizing of gay marriage does lead to definitional confusion. CNN evidently does not know the difference between these two basic points.

In covering J. D. Hayworth's campaign for an Arizona seat in the U. S. Senate this week, the news agency misrepresented Hayworth's remarks about the idea of gay marriage and its implications. Hayworth is right, and CNN is wrong.

Last week, I chastised Hayworth for his radio ad which championed him as a “good Christian and a good neighbor.” The self-righteous pomposity saturated the airwaves. This week, however, Hayworth is right. Regarding marriage, he made this comment in a recent interview with an Orlando radio station. "But I guess I can make the point of absurdity with an absurd point. I guess that would mean if you really had affection for your horse, I guess you could marry your horse." An argument from the absurd extreme, but a valid argument nonetheless.

Sean Hannity FREE

The point is simple, but evidently beyond the grasp of the CNN staff who reported that statement and then followed it with an absurd claim of their own. Hayworth, they said, is “ worried about states allowing same-sex marriage, he fears it'll lead to bestiality.” Hayworth is not afraid that gay unions will lead to bestiality. He is concerned, and rightly so, that when one throws out the definition of a word or an institution (in this case, marriage as being by definition between a man and a woman), anything goes.

Although CNN may find it difficult to grasp, Hayworth's analysis is spot on. Very simply, where there is lack of definition, confusion reigns. This point applies in all kinds of settings, from employee policy handbooks to boundaries on a football field. When roles, boundaries, words, or ideas are unclear, conflict and chaos inevitably result.

And that is exactly what we are seeing in the arena of marriage right now. A segment of our society, evidently at home at CNN among other places, desires to redefine marriage entirely. Marriage has long been identified in most successful cultures as between one man and one woman. Two people. Joined in a covenant. With the goals of monogamy, procreation, and companionship. Time and history have demonstrated that institution to be the single- best provider of stable homes and families for the rearing of children, and therefore for the continuance of a healthy society.

Scientific study has reinforced the same results. Social research readily recognizes the sociological pathologies that occur when children are divorced from the moorings of two-parent homes. Higher crime rates, dropout rates, and substance abuse rates all result when marriages disintegrate or fail to launch in the first place. In our culture, where divorce is easy, and unwed mothers now birth nearly 45% of American children, our children are already under assault.

Healthy societies do not thrive when social pathologies run rampant. Society and the government have a vested interest in encouraging and promoting healthy marriages and families. Those families do what government cannot – namely, produce healthy, productive citizens who populate and stimulate a vibrant nation.

When one opens the door for redefinition of a basic institution like marriage, anything goes. Questions immediately emerge. On what basis, and on whose authority, shall we redefine the word or institution? Who says that marriage should just be between two people and not three or more? Why should that same “right” not be extended to multiple parties who want a group “marriage”? If marriage is merely a “right” in the eye of the beholder, why could a man not marry his horse? In Asia recently, we have already seen the first removal of marriage as even being between humans as young men have recently “married” virtual cartoon characters and body pillows.

The foundational role of marriage is too crucially important to leave its definition up in the air. Given our predilection for easy divorce, unwed mothers, and gay relationships, our unwillingness to support and encourage strong, healthy families places the future strength of our nation at considerable risk. Encouraging the institutionalization and growth of gay “marriage (as if there were such a thing) only leads to the removal of one more basic building block that lies beneath the house that hopes to be a healthy culture.

As marriage wars rage, courts, like the Massachusetts Supreme Court, struggle to define the concept of marriage and usually use terms like “intimacy, companionship, and mutuality.” We are going to let courts decide and define marriage? Really? Remember, where there is lack of definition, confusion reigns.

The recent Olsen/Boies Complaint, filed as a result of the marriage wars in California, fails to even mention the issue of children's well-being and development. A team of lawyers will argue this Supreme Court case regarding marriage by completely estranging the concepts of marriage and procreation. Again, where there is lack of definition, confusion reigns.

As Helen Alvare has noted, even though nearly every prior Supreme Court opinion quoted in the Olsen/Boies Complaint actually speaks of rights to “marriage and family life,” those who propose radical change fail to see that marriage and parenting go together. By definition, they do not go together in any same sex relationship. Homosexual relationships are intrinsically barren. Nevertheless, a bill has been introduced into Congress to require all adoption and foster agencies to recognize same-sex couples as equal opportunities for placement. In other words, what God and/or nature has denied, Congress shall establish and ordain. Even in spite of sociological evidence to suggest that homosexual men exhibit the highest incidence of pedophilia in our culture.

Moreover, all studies and research indicate that homosexual relationships also seek to redefine monogamy, if they use the concept at all. A majority of gay men, and slightly less than a majority of gay women, in “committed relationships” acknowledge having had sex outside that relationship with regularity but are unwilling to consider that behavior as infidelity.

So, in essence, we are being asked to redefine not only marriage, but also parenting and adultery. Family will never be the same, nor will our society. The assault upon marriage and family (yes, the two go together) will be complete. Essential social morality, and conventional wisdom, not to mention social science, will be swept out the door in the name of a new “equality” that fails to consider real consequences for children and a nation.

And that is where Hayworth is right. It is time for a federal marriage amendment. Definition matters. Once the institution of marriage has been eviscerated of its core essentials (monogamy and procreation), it is quite simple to argue that one can marry whomever or whatever one wants. If you take monogamy and procreation out of marriage, what exactly do you have left? Not much. If marriage is just an agreement to live together for a mutually-satisfying period of time, why bother with the institution at all? For a tax benefit? If so, who cares that it exists at all?

Just the children whose lives, development, and stability depend entirely on the homes and families where they are reared. And, by extension, the society whose hopes, dreams and future rides on those children.

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