You Keep Dragging Reason Into the Conversation
Bill Quick

On casting stones at same-sex couples | Questions and Observations

It seems to me that when persuading Christian conservatives, one should be absolutely clear that the status quo is coercion – discriminatory taxes and inheritance rules, and denying the right to contract, all of which conservatives agree is state coercion when it’s applied to them – and that when Jesus was challenged to support such coercion (stoning a woman caught in the act of adultery, according to Mosaic Law), he in turn challenged the teachers of law and Pharisees that the first stone should be cast by one who is without sin.  When no one would stone her, he said he would not condemn her that way either, and he simply told her to leave her life of sin.

If even Jesus doesn’t think it’s humans’ place to punish violations of one of the Ten Commandments dealing with marriage, then it’s an uphill climb for a Christian conservative to argue that it’s their duty to uphold the use of such force based on moral strictures that are much less clear.

I find it baffling that conservatives think the government is capable of making a compact sacred by calling it a marriage, but there I see it in the RedState comments.

Baffling? Why?

If God tells you to jump (or you think he does) the only response permitted to you is “how high?”

You filthy statist-leftist. (Currently the socon version of the lefty “racist.”)

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Bill Quick

About Bill Quick

I am a small-l libertarian. My primary concern is to increase individual liberty as much as possible in the face of statist efforts to restrict it from both the right and the left. If I had to sum up my beliefs as concisely as possible, I would say, "Stay out of my wallet and my bedroom," "your liberty stops at my nose," and "don't tread on me." I will believe that things are taking a turn for the better in America when married gays are able to, and do, maintain large arsenals of automatic weapons, and tax collectors are, and do, not.

Comments

You Keep Dragging Reason Into the Conversation — 17 Comments

  1. When no one would stone her, he said he would not condemn her that way either, and he simply told her to leave her life of sin.

    Note that He didn't say that her life of sin was an equally valid lifestyle choice, that the government should give it special affirmative action preferrences at the expense of those who weren't living a life of sin to begin with, and that telling her she was living a life of sin and that it would be better for her soul and body's health if she left it was "unacceptable bullying" or a "hate crime".

    He wasn't going to support the death penlty for adultery, but neither was He going to pretend it was a Good Thing.

    Unfortunately, the Left is demanding all of those things, and you seem to be perfectly happy applying as much government coercion as needed to oblige them. Again, there's a vast difference between punishment and approval. All the government should be doing is guaranteeing the right of every citizen to live their life free from physical coercion as long as they physically coerce no one. The right to not be disapproved of is one I've never been able to find, and wouldn't want to have; there's people whose disapproval I want to have. Nancy Pelosi comes to mind.

     

    And what discriminatory tax and inheritance rules are you talking about? Any gay person can make out a will leaving all their worldly goods to the protection and support of the Naked Naturist Society, or any random stranger they meet in a bar; so can I. When it comes to tax treatment, the actual advantage is in remaining single; there's a reason the phrase "marriage penalty" entered the language. Put in a flat tax and be done with it.

    • When it comes to tax treatment, the actual advantage is in remaining single;

      Live together, one can file the kids as dependents and claiming “Head of household” the other can file the kids for EIC only.

    • “And what discriminatory tax and inheritance rules are you talking about?”

      Gays cannot file as “married, filing jointly,” which offers advantages for many taxpayers over filing “single” or “head of household.” Further, gay couples cannot claim the same marital exemptions to the inheritance and gift taxes.

      “Again, there’s a vast difference between punishment and approval.”

      There’s also a vast difference between legal tolerance and social approval. There are many things one could do that would be both legal and seriously damaging to one’s relationships and one’s career.

  2. And what discriminatory tax and inheritance rules are you talking about?

    Gee SDN, have you missed the entire DOMA argument in court?  Plaintiff had to pay over $300K in inheritance tax after her spouse's death, which would have been $0.00 without DOMA.  Your animus, based on ignorance is showing.

    And don't Social Conservatives like the idea of a "stay-at-home" parent able to provide nuclear support for the family, with the other parent earning a living and taking advantage of family medical insurance?  Interesting that the kids of gay parents are not included in that evaluation.  The "Marriage Penalty" only applies to two earner families, so your comments are again, either ignorant, or based on animus.

    • So the answer isn’t to reform the tax system (like the flat tax I suggested above); the answer is to join the Left in breaking down an institution that by X thousand years of empirical evidence works the best in producing and raising kids?

      Again, you are arguing with the cardboard socon in your head.

      • Agreed. The whole inheritance tax situation is out of line. However, in the meantime, until such time as that rather intractable problem is fixed, here’s an easy way to fix one part of it simply by treating your gay neighbors as you yourself are treated. Wonder where that concept comes from?

        I guess that “cardboard” in my head would be less of an issue if the arguments provided by socons didn’t continually let slip the animus showing from behind their skirts.

  3. Speaking of animus, here's Walter Olson, of Overlawyered.com, pointing out more of that animus toward gay families (and now adopted ones) coming from the National Organization for Marriage crowd and their institutional supporters

    Until lately, NOM and its friends had actually spent little time criticizing adoption by gays, and some had even put in a kind word for it. Many anti-gay activists were also active in the anti-abortion movement, which generally regards adoption as an extremely good thing. But with the new strategy shift a distinctly harsher line has emerged. Any parental structure other than a married biological mother and father, it is now argued, should be presumed to inflict damage on kids.

    So, in an effort to keep gay people in their place, the traditional marriage folks are now pushing a strategy that throws all adoptive families under the bus.  What's that about "foolish consistency?"

    • I was not aware of the examples Rosen cites; based on what I see reported, I would have to disagree with NOM and Bill Donohue. Any family is better than no family. Is it the optimal arrangement? X thousand years of experience says No.

      I also have to take Mr Olson with several grains of salt as he employs the typical Left tactic of attacking the study by impugning its’ funding without noting that its’ debunkers were also drawing paychecks from organizations on the other side.

  4. SDN, with all due respect, straights have done far more damage to their own institution of marriage than anything gay marriage can possibly do.

    Where is your “procreation, family, and children” argument going to go when 98% of kids are born out of wedlock, rather than the current 50%? And, you know, gays didn’t have one single damned thing to do with that, nor will they.

    So I wish you’d drop the hysteria about gay marriage destroying straight marriage.

    I was watching Dana Loesch supposedly “destroy” Piers Morgan on gun control (she didn’t, because Piers could control the mike), but what really got me was that smug black commie Obama buttboy Van Jones arguing about gun control. I really wished that somebody would point out to schmucks like him that guns in law abiding citizens’ hands aren’t a problem, and if we wanted to address the bulk of the real problem we’d look at the fact that gun-slinging young thugs of his own race are responsible for more than half of all gun murders in this country.

    Gay marriage isn’t a threat to straight marriage. The real threat is coming from you straight folks yourselves.

    • You know, Bill, you’re probably right. I need to admit that we’ve lost the argument and move on. Because tearing down society’s institutions can be stopped only where the reasonable people say it should be.

      Welcome to the future.

      Paedophiles may be wired differently. This is radical stuff. But there is a growing conviction, notably in Canada, that paedophilia should probably be classified as a distinct sexual orientation, like heterosexuality or homosexuality. Two eminent researchers testified to that effect to a Canadian parliamentary commission last year, and the Harvard Mental Health Letter of July 2010 stated baldly that paedophilia “is a sexual orientation” and therefore “unlikely to change”.

      The reclassification of paedophilia as a sexual orientation would, however, play into what Goode calls “the sexual liberation discourse”, which has existed since the 1970s. “There are a lot of people,” she says, “who say: we outlawed homosexuality, and we were wrong. Perhaps we’re wrong about paedophilia.”

      Social perceptions do change. Child brides were once the norm; in the late 16th century the age of consent in England was 10.

      The Gods of the Copybook Headings are on line 1.

      • You know, Bill, you’re probably right. I need to admit that we’ve lost the argument and move on.

        What’s the argument? That gays are destroying straight marriage?

        If that’s your argument, prove it, instead of ignoring the fact that, in truth, straight people are doing far, farm more to destroy straight marriage.

  5. Glad to see rejection of the NOM crowd, so I assume you'll be using your influence to change their strategy.

    Don't like Olson?  So, shooting the messenger is OK, I guess.  Becha you like his contributions to overlawyered.com, though.

    Regardless, all the arguments you put forth are backed by NOM and its adherents, and I for one kinda hope they keep making them.  It will just move more people into support for marriage equality as a result.  See here, for example:

    But the National Organization for Marriage pamphlet stunned me for not for its recognition of the biological bond between parents and children but rather for its suggestion that all families built outside that bond were the result of unseemly adult machinations — and so “inverted the purpose of marriage.” Indeed, its argument against same-sex marriage was secondary to its argument against any violation of what it regarded as the natural order, from “artificial reproductive technology” to, once again, adoption. It was a sweeping broadside, and for every truism it contained — “adopted children…tell us they long for relationship with their biological parents” — it proffered a nugget of pseudo-scientific hysteria, such as the assurance that “pre-teen girls not living with their biological fathers get their menstrual periods earlier than girls who live with their fathers.”
     

    You've rejected, implicitly anyway, the idea that the perfect should be the enemy of the good, yet feel a need to write, "Is it the optimal arrangement? X thousand years of experience says No."  Talk about erecting cardboard cutouts. That slip is becoming more noticeable to others.

  6. Ok I’m no biblical scholar so aside from St Paul’s hangups where in the bible is homosexuality condemned as a sin. Certainly not in the Ten Commandments I learned.

    Gays are a small percentage of the populace but through the millenia their isolation and guilt due to societal disapproval based upon someone’s hangups (celibacy for priests is another one) has done more harm than good. I think it is time to give them access to the normal institutions of society if they so desire. How does this harm anyone? I think it is overall good for society when gays can feel they are a part of society rather than outcasts or fringe members. Second class, so to speak.

      • Not to thread-jack, or anything, but one of the things I’ve learned in my own Biblical examinations, and reading of Scripture, is the odd way Paul’s epistles have been abused historically against gay people. The overriding theme in all of his letters is one of inclusiveness, whether directed toward (at the time) Jewish-centric congregations, or Gentile-centric ones. Here’s one exigesis exposing what I’m talking about:

        http://www.jamesalison.co.uk/texts/eng15.html

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