Yesterday evening I took my father to see our local minor league team, the Ironbirds, and when we got home we watched an episode of “Columbo,” one of my father’s favorite TV shows, through the magic of Wii and streaming Netflix. Dad loves how Peter Falk springs the trap on the murderer. I am saddened to learn of his passing from dear Moe Lane and dear Little Miss Attila.
I enjoy “Columbo,” too, but pulled out my iPod Touch to check out Twitter, which is how I learned that the gay marriage equality bill passed in New York. I see Hot Air had the live feed of the voting. I had not wanted to get my hopes up, having gone to watch the Maryland House of Delegates give final approval to Maryland’s same-sex marriage equality bill, only to see it sent back to committee to avoid being defeated on the record. (I plan to make YouTube videos of each of the speeches and add my own remarks.) Regarding New York, I am semi-elated: elated because it’s an advance for gay equality, semi because equality should not be subjected to the whims of majority votes and it should not vary from state-to-state. I consider equality for lesbians and gays to be an unalienable right, even if it is almost totally alienated right now.
In the conversation on Twitter, some conservatives were decent enough to call for conservative arguments for gay equality — @jtLOL (Jim Treacher of “The Daily Caller,” who correctly sizes up Obama’s recent speech to an audience of the last 600 gays unable to process the fact that “he’s just not that into them.”), @NolteNC (John Nolte, editor-in-chief of Big Hollywood, who has a lovely tribute to Peter Falk) and @sistertoldjah (who is one of the first conservative bloggers I began to read in 2008 and yesterday noted that the conservative world is more diverse than it gets credit for), and I suggested they read my blog. Oops! I’ve been focusing on my health and haven’t posted since May 16. Regular readers will recognize the following list of conservative reasons I have advanced for gay equality in general, and gay marriage equality in particular:
- Religions are free to define marriage any way they want for their own members. The Catholic definition of marriage does not bind Unitarians or Mormons or Jews or atheists. In fact, Mormons have THREE definitions of marriage, including one that defines all marriages not celebrated in a Mormon temple between Mormons according to Mormon rites to be inferior, base and spiritually dead. Mormons use this inferior marriage — a civil union for straight people, really — to force their members into the absolute obedience and tithe-paying required for the superior temple marriage. The reason that government must define marriage in a religiously pluralistic society is that secular legal marriage protects the individual’s liberty to change religions or be free of religion and still marry–and divorce. (I think I’m the first person to point out the value of government-defined secular marriage in preserving individual liberty and religious freedom.) Governments, which are the realm of coercion, can only provide for individual liberty when they restrict religions to the realm of persuasion. All the arguments against equality for gays are founded in religion and religions must not be allowed to appropriate the coercive powers of government to impose their rules on an entire population.
- The modern gay rights movement has a spiritual foundation because it really began in October 1968 when gay ordained Baptist minister Troy Perry founded the Metropolitan Community Church, not with the Stonewall riots in June 1969. Because the MCC performs religious marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples, there’s no need for gays to sue any Christian religion for discrimination. (Similarly, women are not barred from equality on the grounds that it would allow them to sue the Catholic Church to force it to ordain female priests.)
- If the Left could weaponize gays to bring down free market economies and democratic republics, then it would fight as hard for gay equality as it has for black equality. It can’t, so it hasn’t and it won’t. No group experiences discrimination as comprehensive as that forced on gays: in the name of family values, we are forced out of our own families. However, gays have responded to discrimination by becoming entrepreneurs and professionals, which makes gays a natural constituency of fiscal conservativism and explains why 31 percent of gay voters voted for Republicans in 2010 (including me). Gays are the most getable demographic in 2012 for Republicans because there’s no voting bloc Obama and the Democrats have screwed over more than gays and they are furious and looking for a new home. They are worth getting: Obama’s margin of victory in 2010 was almost exactly the size of the gay voting bloc.
- Regarding the demographic composition of the Left: there are three groups who are only on the Left because social conservatives drove them out of the Right for religious reasons: gays, women who support choice because they do not want to be the property of a man or a religion, and Jews. The first two groups were driven out because they are uppity and do not respond to the demands of a religion to produce children. Jews got tossed out for refusing to become Christians. The Left strings these three groups along but never really fights for them because each one has too many entrepreneurs to allow them to be weaponized against free markets/capitalism. Instead the Left exploits them for money, labor and votes. Let us call them useful idealists.
- Gays want marriage for the hundreds of rights at the state level — and the 1031 rights at the federal level — that allow same-sex couples to build their lives together. We have no agenda of destroying the family — we want to make families . If we can have full federal and state secular marriage rights, we have no reason to persuade any religion to change.
- I think one of the reasons some religions are fighting gay equality harder than others is that they have figured out how to get government money through their various charities and enterprises, such as adoption services and hospitals, which also function as recruitment centers to gain converts, and gays will be like a radioactive dye exposing the rivers of cash they’ve been taking in that will be cut off if they refuse to operate on the same non-discriminatory basis as any other government-funded operation. Remember, religions retain the right to discriminate according to their beliefs as long as they do so on their own property and their own dime.
It’s almost 4 am. That’s enough for now.
Update: Prof. Reynolds, unalienable rights that are opposed by a majority are going to have to be imposed by courts. It is not acceptable to gays to be fully human in one state and not in another. It is antithetical to the concept of unalienable rights. Such a checkerboard also is a source of economic and social stagnation. Until mid-2001 when Maryland included sexual orientation as a class protected against discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations (such as restaurants, theatres, stores), I couldn’t move from one county in Maryland to another because I had equality where I lived and therefore could protect my quadriplegic life partner, but did not in the county where my parents lived when it would have been best for me to move. This disparity almost cost me my life and did result in heavy financial losses.)
Update: Thank you, Prof. Reynolds, for the link, and welcome, Instapundit readers!
I also thank Daniel Blatt for his link and welcome Gay Patriot readers. Daniel ponders the following:
The question is: how do we break them [Leftist gays] from their prejudiced view of the GOP, particularly given how the media dwell on social conservatives’ (alleged) dominance of the movement — and the ignorance of many gay leaders of the underlying philosophy of the Republican Party as it has evolved since the nomination of Barry Goldwater in 1964 and the election of Ronald Reagan sixteen years later.
One of the reasons I started this blog is to educate gays about the principles of fiscal conservativism so they can see their natural home is on the Right. By casting gays out of every socializing institution and by stigmatizing gays as intrinsically evil, it is the good intentions of social conservatives that have paved the road to hell for gays. That is why another reason I started this blog is to educate social conservatives about gay equality so they can see that gay equality actually supports their core values of individual liberty, strengthening marriage and the family and creating a more moral, stable and prosperous society. So, Daniel, that is what gay conservatives must do. We are the among the pioneers and the ones in the best position to do it.
I also welcome readers from the Sundries Shack, and thank dear Jimmy Bise for linking this post even though he opposes gay marriage equality.