Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Newsweek finds nothing against gay marriage. Case closed, gay marriage for all now, please.
The current edition of NEWSWEEK may shake up a thing or two. In the fight against gay marriage, religious wingnuts use the 'For the Bible tells us so' argument. So, Lisa Miller over at Newsweek has done something few of us have done, sat down and actually read it. And what does she find? Not only does (and no surprises here, baby) the Bible not discuss gay marriage - it's 'traditional definition' of marriage is something that modern society should not really aspire to. Some excerpts, anyone? Shall we look to Abraham, the great patriarch, who slept with his servant when he discovered his beloved wife Sarah was infertile? Or to Jacob, who fathered children with four different women (two sisters and their servants)? Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon and the kings of Judah and Israel—all these fathers and heroes were polygamists. The New Testament model of marriage is hardly better. Jesus himself was single and preached an indifference to earthly attachments—especially family. The apostle Paul (also single) regarded marriage as an act of last resort for those unable to contain their animal lust. "It is better to marry than to burn with passion," says the apostle, in one of the most lukewarm endorsements of a treasured institution ever uttered. Would any contemporary heterosexual married couple—who likely woke up on their wedding day harboring some optimistic and newfangled ideas about gender equality and romantic love—turn to the Bible as a how-to script? Religious objections to gay marriage are rooted not in the Bible at all, then, but in custom and tradition (and, to talk turkey for a minute, a personal discomfort with gay sex that transcends theological argument). Case closed, gay marriage for all now, please.