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The compulsion to label & belittle gay marriage opponents

Perhaps the most depressing thing about the debate on gay marriage is the dedication of gay marriage advocates to demonizing those who oppose state-recognition of same-sex marriages.  With their childish “No H8” campaign, they contend that people oppose their view because they hate gay people.

No, there are, I grant, some folks who oppose state recognition of same-sex marriages because of their animus against homosexuals, but they do not represent all such opponents.  Many oppose such recognition because they believe marriage should be reserved for different-sex couples.  Indeed, a good number of these folks (but, alas not all) support state recognition of civil unions, similar benefits, different name.

Should we call the legislators in Rhode Island and Illinois “haters” because they moved forward to recognize civil unions for same-sex couples without calling them marriage?

In fact, some who oppose same-sex marriage treat gay people with dignity.  Such individuals have, for exampl,e hosted me in their homes, listened to my arguments, stood with me in hours of difficulty and even let me play (unsupervised) with their kids.  They know gay people aren’t demons; they don’t disapprove of us, it’s just that their understanding of marriage differs from that of gay activists.

Which brings me to the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing earlier this week on the Respect for Marriage Act, a bill (that I support) which repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

While I believe Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) is wrong to oppose the Act pending before the current Congress, he’s spot on when he takes issue with another supporter of the measure:

One of the witnesses before us today says that DOMA was passed for only one reason: “to express disapproval of gay and lesbian people.”  I know this to be false. Senators at the time such as Biden, Harkin, Kohl, and you, Mr. Chairman, and Representatives at the time, such as Schumer and Durbin, did not support DOMA to express disapproval of gay and lesbian people.  And neither did I.

Instead of demonizing DOMA supporters and questioning their motives, we should be challenging their arguments.

All this leads me to wonder — and not for the first time — why certain gay marriage advocates insist on seeing all those who disagree with them as harboring some kind of animus against gay people.

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19 Comments

  1. I don’t know, but Thomas Sowell seems to suggest that an important part of Progressivism generally is assuming bad motives of one’s opponents.

    Comment by Chillingworth — July 22, 2011 @ 6:20 pm - July 22, 2011

  2. I’m not a supporter of “gay marriage”. I also do not hate LGBT people. I have recieved much hate from LGBT activists in this town for decades. I and a gay Conservative friend of mine have been threatened with violence on more than one ocassion by LGBT activists who I set aside as a class of hateful people not like the non activist LGBT community that I know.

    Comment by Richard Bell — July 22, 2011 @ 6:37 pm - July 22, 2011

  3. “Though victory against such an evil onslaught will never come easy, it will also never come until the church awakes from her slumber and becomes the visible expression of Jesus Christ, raised from the dead in the power of the Holy Spirit, in this fallen world. The homosexual agenda will never be defeated by mere laws. This war will only be won by a church awakened and determined to stand for the righteousness of God. It is my hope and fervent prayer that, before it’s too late and the agenda of death and destruction has overcome us utterly, God’s people will rise.” – Traditional Values Coalition head Lou Sheldon, adding that gays are “the very face of evil.”

    Yes BDB there are many folk out there with more tolerant views. . .but folk like Sheldon, is, well, just the polar opposite of those who ‘throw out the H8 label’

    Comment by rusty — July 22, 2011 @ 6:45 pm - July 22, 2011

  4. The key is that it makes it so much easier to discount the “anti” message if those of us on the “anti” side are simply dismissed as haters and bigots. After all, if opposition is based on hatred and bigotry, then there is no need to actually try to reach consensus because such folks are, by definition, not worth the time and effort to try to include in the consensus. And what’s more, it takes those on the fence and coerces them to join the “pro” side or remain silent. And don’t you know that painting your opponents as bad actors is ever so much easier than actually winning the debate on the merits.

    Comment by Rhymes With Right — July 22, 2011 @ 7:19 pm - July 22, 2011

  5. “And what’s more, [demonizing opponents of gay marriage] takes those on the fence and coerces them to join the “pro” side or remain silent.”

    RwR, you nailed it. Coercion really is how “Gay, Inc.” has succeeded the way it has. Make people terrified that they’ll be branded bigots, haters, homophobes, etc., unless they do what “Gay, Inc.” wants. This nasty strategy is also employed by the Left in other situations. You’re a racist if you oppose illegal immigration. You’re a sexist if you oppose abortion. You’re an Islamophobe if you oppose Islamic terrorism, and on and on it goes. It’s time we conservatives got some real backbone and stood up to this Alinskyist tactic. The labels have power only if we choose to cower before them. We can choose not to, and we’d better start making that choice before it’s too late.

    Comment by Seane-Anna — July 22, 2011 @ 7:57 pm - July 22, 2011

  6. The gay marriage fight is really just the Gay left’s seething hatred of religious people.

    They are angry because certain denominations don’t condone the lifestyle. It’s actually insecurity because they shouldn’t care, but they require so much validation and acceptance that when they don’t get it, they throw a tantrum.

    So, to “show them” the Gay left have banded around the cause of gay marriage to steal something away that many religious people feel is sacred.

    It really boils down to a fight over a word.

    This is why government should get out of marriage. Call EVERYTHING a civil union and let your own church decide what’s a marriage and what isn’t.

    Comment by The Original Chris H — July 22, 2011 @ 8:29 pm - July 22, 2011

  7. Comment 1 and the first line of comment 6 make for an interesting compare-and-contrast.

    Comment by Rob Tisinai — July 22, 2011 @ 9:15 pm - July 22, 2011

  8. yeah, all those folk planning on getting married on Sunday in NY,
    those conversations at all those elobarate ceremeonies and gathering will just ring. . .out Got those Religious Folk right by the balls.

    PUHLEASE. . .(gay-sex folk h/t NDT) really thought about planning their nuptials. Do you really think they are all going’ We have just pissed off the religious right!’

    But I am sure that bitter old Miss Rita Beads will have her way at twisting someone’s point of view. just for the heck of it.

    Comment by rusty — July 22, 2011 @ 9:43 pm - July 22, 2011

  9. Comment 1 and the first line of comment 6 make for an interesting compare-and-contrast.

    Not really, when one considers the statements of the leaders of the gay and lesbian community.

    Actually, Bob, most “reasonable” people, if we’re using the word with a respect for its root word, “reason,” agree that there is no evidence for God’s existence, and thus no rational REASON to believe that any god or gods have determined ANYTHING, much less morality.

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 27, 2010 @ 7:13 pm

    Hahahahaha, um. Dude. Seriously? No one in the history of the universe has ever been able to prove that the idea of “gods,” which have always been used to control populations, ever existed. It’s a ridiculous idea, created by uneducated nomads from thousands of years ago.

    GROW UP>

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 29, 2010 @ 4:13 am

    They all rank 10? because they’re all retarded and none of them can be proven by any human who’s ever lived.

    God, your questions are really stupid.

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 29, 2010 @ 4:29 am

    Bob. That means your god is a weak minded little bitch who changes his mind and is definitely NOT eternal or omnipotent. He’s merely a reflection of humanity’s most disgusting instincts.

    Grow the hell up.

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 31, 2010 @ 4:20 am

    Of COURSE, their idea of god is as a serial rapist. Fundamentalist religious people ARE essentially battered wives. They just act it out on a grander scale without such visible bruises. The really screwed up thing is that their abuser is an imaginary friend.

    But it’s a rapist just the same.

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 31, 2010 @ 4:22 am

    Ben, everything you said was spot on. Bob’s idea of “god” is a moral reprobate, and a child at that. I wouldn’t worship a sniveling ass like that if you paid me.

    Comment by Evan Hurst May 31, 2010 @ 4:25 am

    Antireligious bigotry is the primary motivation of the gay and lesbian community.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — July 22, 2011 @ 9:50 pm - July 22, 2011

  10. But I am sure that bitter old Miss Rita Beads will have her way at twisting someone’s point of view. just for the heck of it.

    Doesn’t take twisting; just quoting how the gay and lesbian community insists that marriage is nothing special and that incestuous, plural, and other relationships are “just as worthy”.

    The really funny part in that is how gays and lesbians insist that single and unmarried parenthood is just as good — and then whine that they need marriage because being unmarried or single parents harms children.

    Add to that how Dan Savage and the gay and lesbian community are now whining and bawling about how awful monogamy is, and it’s pretty obvious to see that gays and lesbians have no interest in marriage for what it is and means; it’s just another way of expressing antireligious bigotry.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — July 22, 2011 @ 9:58 pm - July 22, 2011

  11. http://www.christianpost.com/news/new-york-bishop-orders-gay-clergy-to-marry-52529/

    Comment by David in N.O. — July 22, 2011 @ 10:12 pm - July 22, 2011

  12. Even better, David: http://www.christianpost.com/news/pro-gay-marriage-video-mocking-christians-leaves-christians-speechless-52475/

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — July 22, 2011 @ 10:16 pm - July 22, 2011

  13. I didn’t care much for that either NDT, rather disgusted by it in fact, but at least this was amusing:

    http://www.christianpost.com/news/jesus-christ-image-appears-on-receipt-52665/

    Comment by David in N.O. — July 22, 2011 @ 10:22 pm - July 22, 2011

  14. You’re right, David, that was pretty good. 🙂 But generally, I tend not to laugh at these things; as my uncle the pastor puts it, if it helps people focus on and get closer to God, he sees no reason why Jesus wouldn’t appear on a ham sandwich, much less a checkout receipt. Smile, yes, but file it under the “if it works for you” basket.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — July 22, 2011 @ 10:41 pm - July 22, 2011

  15. As my gay friend, Michael puts it, “hell is a real place”.

    Comment by Richard Bell — July 22, 2011 @ 11:20 pm - July 22, 2011

  16. Dan, have you read Saul Alinsky? You really should. This is not childishness, it is a deliberate tactic. It is rule #13: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

    Comment by American Elephant — July 23, 2011 @ 4:37 am - July 23, 2011

  17. 16.Dan, have you read Saul Alinsky? You really should. This is not childishness, it is a deliberate tactic. It is rule #13: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

    Excellent, AE, excellent!

    We can’t defeat the Left if we don’t understand them.

    Comment by Classical Liberal Dave — July 23, 2011 @ 5:39 pm - July 23, 2011

  18. NDT @ 9:

    Antireligious bigotry is the primary motivation of the gay and lesbian community.

    I disagree. America’s homosexuals are caught up in the narcissism of our age. When absolute egocentrism is your bread-and-butter, anti-religious sentiment natural comes along for the ride.

    Comment by Classical Liberal Dave — July 23, 2011 @ 5:43 pm - July 23, 2011

  19. It is rule #13: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

    Something that too many on both sides of the debate are doing, unfortunately.

    Comment by Pat — July 25, 2011 @ 7:22 am - July 25, 2011

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