Saturday, May 12, 2012
Pre-Occupied by the One-Half of One Percent
Occupy Wall Street and related groups were indignant, and rightly so, that the wealthiest one percent of the population seems to control the government.
We would all agree that in a democratic republic, policy that affects every American should not be set by an elite, particularly if that elite is only one percent of the people.
But what if that elite is only half that size?
The (un-"occupied") Wall Street Journal reports that, according to the 2010 U.S. Census, about five of every one thousand households is a "same sex couple" household - which, apprently means not just "room mates" but sodomites and Lesbians living together as a kind of "family".
And so, even with "gay marriage" legal in many states, and with homosexual cohabitation legal in all states, only about point-five percent of households in this country are "same sex couples". Whence, then, comes this tremendous political push to cater to the whims of one half of one percent of the U.S. population?
The only conclusion that we can draw from this is that "gay marriage" is a contrived issue, politically speaking. It is the "One half of one percent" trying to bully the rest of us.
Philosophically speaking, however, it is an issue that has gripped the hearts of many - and I am tempted to say an issue that has gripped hearts but not minds, as it is an issue for which a rational case can not be made - but that's not exactly true. "Gay marriage" is rationally in-defensible only if you define marriage according to its nature; "gay marriage" is quite defensibe - and in fact, compelling - if you define marriage as having no nature, as being entirely man-made. "Gay marriage" quite logically follows from the way marriage has been viewed since Henry VIII and especially in modern times. Heterosexuals have been deconstructing marriage for years now, and our presumptions about marriage are finally bearing their rotten fruit.
For example, Rush Limbaugh rightly defends marriage on his radio show, but actions speak louder than words. Now on his fourth marriage, he has made a vow to live with a woman forever after breaking a vow to live with a woman forever after breaking a vow to live with a woman forever after breaking a vow to live with a woman forever. He has been, many times over, "sworn on one altar and forsworn on another" as Chesterton says. He has no more moral authority on this issue than the Kennedies.
In our culture, marriage has become, de facto, a sham - so why not acknowledge the de facto via de jure? It is not even a social custom any more. It has no purpose, apparently. So why not make of it what we will? - which is the way we approach man himself these days.
So in a way, the "gay marriage" boosters get it right. They simply apply what marriage has become (a purely arbitrary social construct) and extend the logic to what they want it to be - which is an even more arbitrary social construct, something completely severed from its true nature. But then again (they ask) what is nature and what is truth? When we, even we defenders of common sense and reason, live as if there were no nature and there were no truth, we can't really be surprised when our children, convinced of their moral superiority over us, condemn us for our hypocrisy, simply by applying the logic of our actions against us.
And when a debater on Facebook tells me that marriage has no purpose because sex has no purpose - that the only purpose of sex is selfish pleasure - how can you argue with him, when this is the way even most Catholics treat sex, in this era of Contraception?
When we remove purpose from anything, we kill its nature.
Contraception turns sex into something inherently pointless. Divorce and remarriage turns marriage into something just as pointless - a mere temporary convenience, a way of making sex (which is pointless) easier to get, since you don't have to drive home afterwards.
We must understand that this view of life - the view that nothing has a purpose, most especially our own existence - is what is fueling the Culture of Death all around us.
And we can't argue with the "gay marriage" boosters because - in one very important sense - they are too logical.
And their logic is the witness of our own moral failure.
ADDENDUM: It has been pointed out to me that the argument I make above, while quite accurate, might serve to discourage orthodox Catholics and other serious Christians from defending the integrity of marriage. I make it sound as if the fall of marriage is inevitable, given the way we've treated marriage all these years. That is not my intention; we must all rally now, when things look most grim. But we must defend marriage as God made it, not as we would like to remake it. For more on that, read my latest post - Will We Defend All of Marriage - or Part of It?