Surprise, surprise. Calvin has something controversial to say. That's right. I'm about ready to talk about something that you have a strong opinion about. I'm not sure what your opinion is, but I'm sure it's a strong one.
First let me start out by saying two things. First, I love everyone (except for my stupid co-worker initials B.S. coinidentally. He's an idiot and I hope he gets hurt really bad and ends up with a nasty scar). Even if we disagree, I still love you. Second, I'm perfectly able and willing to recognize that all of my feelings toward you... be it 'shock', 'amazement', 'frustration', 'anger', etc... are mostly likely felt by you... toward me. I know. I know. As bad I want you to agree with everything I say, I understand that you want me to agree with everything you say. I just want you to know that I understand that concept before I delve into the meat of this post.
Jake doesn't like it when we talk politics on this blog, Twitter, or Facebook. Mostly because he's afraid that a lot of people might assume that he and I are on the same page... but that is seldom the case with stuff like this. Jake has an opinion about gay marriage, but it isn't as strong as mine and he isn't even close to as passionate about it as I am (tee hee... I said "gay marriage" and "passionate" in the same sentence).
So a couple of days ago I found out that Proposition 8 was overturned in California. I wasn't surprised to see a lot of my non-Mormon friends celebrating this fact. It was truly a landmark occasion. I honestly believe that. However... just because it's a "landmark" occasion doesn't always make it a good occasion. I was watching everyone celebrating and expressing their joy at the judges ruling. Good for you, guys. Good for you.
I was shocked, however, at how many of my Mormon friends and acquaintances were also expressing their enthusiasm over the ruling. I couldn't believe it. 'Surprised' is an understatement. I was utterly shocked. I thought there might be a few, but I was astounded at how many people were happy about Prop 8 being overturned.
Now, I could go on for pages and pages about my opinion, but I don't have the time or the energy so I'm going to try to be as brief as possible as I communicate my feelings over the last few days.
"Finally, the State of California is doing the right thing." Actually, no. The people of California voted twice and both times voted against allowing gays to marry. ONE SINGLE JUDGE overturned the ruling. Not the State of California.
"I'm just happy that people born gay will be able to get married." Born gay? So if a person is born with gay tendencies, that makes it ok? Cause there are people born every day with tendencies toward a myriad of sins, but we're taught that the natural man is an enemy to God. We should always be trying to overcome temptation to sin. It's unfortunate that some gay people are attracted to their own gender, but that doesn't mean it's not a sin to engage in that type of behavior.
"As long as it doesn't affect me, let them do what they want." So what happens if gays are allowed to marry? Won't school teachers be forced to include gay relationships as legally accepted forms of marriage in classrooms? During the sex-ed talk in 5th grade, are they going to start including gay butt sex? I mean, it's legal and socially acceptable now, right? They should probably talk about it so our 11-year-old's are completely clear on that kind of stuff.
"Okay... but other than that, it doesn't affect me." For arguments sake, let's pretend that they legalized gay marriage today. Then tomorrow two gay men approach their Mormon bishop and request to get married. The bishop doesn't agree with gay marriage so he refuses to perform the ceremony. Those two gay men can now sue the church for discrimination. A person who has the power to marry two people has been accused of discriminating against a gay couple. You don't think that affects you?
"Gays being allowed to get married is inevitable. What's the point in trying to stop it?" I actually agree that gay marriage will eventually be legal in the entire country and possibly the entire world. But just because I think it's probably going to happen doesn't mean it's okay for me to sit back and let it happen. It's my responsibility to do everything in my power to stop it.
"I don't know why people are making such a big deal out of this." Maybe it's because some of us are afraid that legalizing gay marriage will open the door to other types of things.
"You're not gonna talk about humans trying to marry animals are you?" No. I'm not. I don't think that hypothetical argument is very feasible. I will, however, mention that polygamy or maybe adult siblings wanting to get married is extremely likely to come up as a result of legalizing gay marriage. In both of those examples we have consenting adults wanting to marry each other. Why would we allow two guys to get married, but not a brother and a sister?
"Because that's just gross. And they'd have deformed kids." What if they could prove they were unable to reproduce and they only wanted to get married because they loved each other dearly and wanted all the rights that come with marriage?
"Now you're just being stupid." I have a feeling that 2o years from now when the world is comparable to Sodom and Gomorrah, we're gonna look back at gay marriage and think, 'That's where it all started'.
"But forcing gay people to live the same morals as we do sounds a lot like Satan's plan. Didn't he try to force everyone to obey the commandments? We can't take away their agency." So... why do we have any laws then? If murdering someone is against the law, then we're taking away their freedom to do what they want, right? Of course not. People still have the agency to do what they want... it's just that we impose certain consequences on those actions. Not allowing gay people to get married isn't taking away anyone's agency.
"Yes it is. It's taking away their right to marry a member of the same sex." Well, I don't have that right, either. A gay man can't marry another man... and neither can I. So really, what gay people are requesting are additional rights. They want a right that I don't have.
"But us Mormons believe that unless it's a temple marriage, it's not a 'real' marriage anyway (as in, not for time and all eternity). So what's the difference between a marriage outside the temple vs a gay marriage?" A man and woman marrying outside the temple still have the option available to them in this life or the next, to accept the Gospel and spend eternity together. Two men will never have that same opportunity. Ever. Two men will never be able to be sealed for time and eternity. Ever. No matter what.
"How can you say that? At one point in Mormon history, God didn't allow blacks to hold the Priesthood. I'm sure back then, some ignorant Mormon said the same thing about blacks never ever ever being allowed to have the Priesthood. And today... they have it." Are you honestly trying to tell me that at some point in the future, God is going to allow two gay men to co-habitate in the Celestial Kingdom and create worlds together? I'm assuming you think they'll just be allowed to spiritually adopt spirit children from the heterosexual couples chillin' with them in the CK.
"I think that gay couples deserve to be happy. If they want to adopt and raise children, I think they should be able to." You think they should be able to raise a child in a homosexual environment as long as it makes them happy? Does the welfare of the child come into play at all in your mind or are you only concerned about what make gay couples happy?
"What do you mean 'welfare of the child'? There are thousands of heterosexual couples who are horrible, abusive, neglectful parents. If gay couples provide loving environments for children, that's all that matters." You can't compare the best possible gay marriage to the worst possible hetero marriage. That's not fair. Let's look at it this way: If you had a child you were putting up for adoption and you had it narrowed down to two couples, one straight and one gay, which would you choose?
"That depends on a whole lot of other things." Let's pretend you could see into the future and you knew that both couples would provide an equally loving home for 50 years. I'm asking you straight out which couple you would choose to care for your child.
"Fine. Fine. I'd choose the straight couple." Did you choose the straight couple because you don't want your kid to get made fun of at school or do you honestly believe that the best environment for raising a well-rounded child is in a home with a father and a mother?
"All I know is that I think the Mormon church leaders were wrong when they didn't let blacks have the Priesthood and I think they're also wrong about this." So what your saying is that you're planning on disagreeing with the Proclamation to the Family and our First Presidency including the Prophet of God because you think at some point down the road, they're all gonna change their minds. If they changed their minds once (ie blacks and the priesthood) then they might do it again... so you're gonna go in the complete opposite direction of the Mormon Church and it's counsel.
"The Church isn't allowed to tell me how to vote. I'm super pissed that the Church has chosen to become so involved in this obviously political issue." Sure. Gay marriage is a political issue. And I recognize that churches aren't allowed to tell it's members how to vote or else they'll lose their tax exempt status. But the Church isn't doing that... no matter how bad you want to blame the Church for disagreeing with you... they aren't doing anything they're not supposed to do. They are simply expressing their opinion and reiterating their (our) beliefs. Don't you remember how often we are counseled by our church leader to "vote with your conscience"? Just because a church says, "Marriage between a man and woman is the bedrock of society." doesn't mean they are telling their members how to vote. Get over it! If you feel guilty about voting against the church, that's your problem. Quite blaming the church for reminding you about your own beliefs. Stand up for yourself. Own up to it. Admit that you think our church leaders are old-fashioned hypocrites who need to get with the times and start being more accepting of the sins of others.
That is all. Have a great day.
Next Week: The Myth of Global Warming