Friday, January 6, 2012

The practical choice

This is based on a comment I made here.

What people fail to notice about the "traditional" view of marriage as being people of the opposite sex is that it was an imposed tradition.

First, lots of cultures and societies have recognised versions of same-sex marriage: the social form is a great deal older than people realise. This extends to Roman law.

Second, if you ban such marriages (as the early Christian emperors did) and then kill (i.e. judicially murder) people who engage in same-sex activity then same-sex marriage is precluded. Given the reality of human sexual diversity, such brutality is needed to maintain the "tradition" in any society with some form of moral universalism. Take away the (necessary) enforcing brutality and, given the reality of human sexual diversity, the want to settle down together with legal support will re-assert itself. In a morally universalist society, there is no stable rest point in the middle. You either buy into the (thoroughly utopian) endless repression of sexual diversity or accept equal protection of the law: that is the practical choice.

Agitation for same-sex marriage is not a manifestation of modern "decadence", it is a manifestation of modern decency.

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