Friday, May 23, 2008

In the Whatever Happened To...Column

I am so glad that the Philadelphia Inquirer signed Rick Santorum on as a columnist. This way, we can continue to be amused at his batshit crazy fundamentalist logic. I mean, what's Mark Foley been up to? Who knows?

Now that California has said that creating separate language in the state constitution for a group of individuals amounts to discrimination, thus opening the doors for gay marriage, Rick is all 'uh hum, toldya the world would end' in his Inky column.

I plucked some bon mots:

First, he says his alarm! went unheeded. It's right in the title:

The Elephant in the Room: A wake-up call on gay marriage after '03 alarm went unheeded

One could just say you lost, Rick.

He says:
Five years later, do I regret sounding the alarm about marriage? No.

I'm just saddened that time has proved right those of us who worried about the future of marriage as the union of husband and wife, deeply rooted not only in our traditions, our faiths, but in the facts of human nature: as Pope Benedict said, "The cradle of life and love," connecting mothers and fathers to their children.

Okay, he's upfront in admitting that his notion of what is marriage comes from his faith. But then, get this and try not to giggle, he says that it's due to the facts of human nature that only men and only women should marry. His source? An anthropolgist? A genetic scientist? A biologist (known to Santorum as a Darwinist, btw). Nope. The Pope. Yeah, all us non-religious types who believe in equality and separation of church and state should look to that man of science and reason for our stand on human nature. The Pope. Who, I don't think, gets peer reviewed.

Then he raises the clouding of a spurious correlation to a high art. In Norway, he says, gay marriage was legalized in 1990 and then all hell broke loose. (If it's Norway, does that mean that Hell has frozen over? Just WonderingTM)

Look at Norway. It began allowing same-sex marriage in the 1990s. In just the last decade, its heterosexual-marriage rates have nose-dived and its out-of-wedlock birthrate skyrocketed to 80 percent for firstborn children. Too bad for those kids who probably won't have a dad around, but we can't let the welfare of children stand in the way of social affirmation, can we?

How is this related to gay marriage? I haven't the foggiest idea and Santorum doesn't bother to explain. How does he know these children are growing up without father? Maybe some of them are growing up with two dads? Further, does he really want to use Norway as an example of a place where they suffer the little children? Norway has, since adopting the gay marriage law also raised itself to the top spot in standard of living among all countries of the world - a feat it has been repeating year after year. Since adopting the gay marriage law, Norway's infant mortality rate has steadily dropped every year. It currently stands at 3.64/1000 births compared to the US who's rate is 6.4/1000.

Okay, but that's the disingenuous part. What of the batshit crazy stuff? Well lookie here:

But what about love? That's the question a student asked this winter when I spoke at Georgetown University.

Is anyone saying same-sex couples can't love each other? I love my children. I love my friends, my brother. Heck, I even love my mother-in-law. Should we call these relationships marriage, too? Marriage is and always has been more than the acknowledgment of the love between two people.

What about the constitutional right to equal protection under the law? Marriage is not an inalienable right; it is a privilege, a license granted by government conferring certain governmental benefits.

There is a constitutional right that is under threat: the free exercise of religion.

Let me go out on another limb here and make another crazy prediction. Within 10 years, clergy will be sued or indicted for preaching on certain Bible passages dealing with homosexuality and churches, and church-related organizations will lose government contracts and even their tax-exempt status.

Wha? Where to begin?

Let's look at Santorum's Syllogism, shall we? (As if he didn't get enough abuse from his man-on-dog comments)

I love my brother. Marriage=Love. Therefore I have married my brother

I know the Appalachians run up through Pennsylvania, Rick. But really.

He rightly assigns the governance of marriage to the government. It is after all the government that issues the license. But then he goes on to say that it's a privilege. Then he collapses all sanity by saying that only the government is allowed to confer privilege on people and it can do so by saying which ones deserve the privilege. Which is exactly the point the Supreme Court of California made.

Going into foaming at the mouth mode, he claims that if two people in California get married my free expression of religion is going to be infringed upon. Again, we don't get the mechanics of how this works. Yes, if my religion says that I'm going to hell for casting my eyes upon an elderly gay couple sitting in a hospital room kissing each other goodbye on the day that death do them part, then yeah. But what kind of religion is that? Makes you want to run to your nearest atheist temple and lie prostrate upon the ground, doesn't it? Oh, I kid. There are no atheist temples. Maybe universities, or libraries, or possibly Unitarian churches. But we're not much into organization.

Then he says he's going to make a crazy prediction. (Oh, Rick? They've all been crazy, this isn't your first). All of his predictions center around Churches losing their federal advantages for promoting bigotry. And my response is: yeah, so?

Here's the deal. If you want to have a church that doesn't allow gay marriage go right ahead. But do it without the federal grants and the federal tax exemptions. In other words, religions, pull yourself up by your bootstraps. No one says you have to go out of existence. We're just saying our tax dollars don't have to support you.

That's a position you ought to understand.


Claire said...

Outstanding post. I'm so embarrassed for my hometown paper hiring Santorum as a columnist. Still, if it's a choice between seeing him write a column and seeing him return to the Senate, I'm happy to see him in his little green eyeshade.

Dean Wormer said...

Wow, awesome post.

I think you pretty much ripped Sanatorum to pieces but I want add one thing. This quote-

I'm just saddened that time has proved right those of us who worried about the future of marriage as the union of husband and wife, deeply rooted not only in our traditions, our faiths, but in the facts of human nature: as Pope Benedict said, "The cradle of life and love," connecting mothers and fathers to their children.

Demonstrates a philisophically weak position on his and Pope Ratzinger's part.

Marriage has to be more than just the possibility of procreation OR PEOPLE THAT WERE OLD OR INFERTILE WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO GET MARRIED.

The argument falls apart on logic.

Dr. Zaius said...

Poor Sanatorum. You told him!

"Right-wing religious leaders like to argue that allowing gay couples te marry will lead to an erosion of the institution of marriage, Eskridge adds. But in Denmark, among heterosexuals, rates of divorce and out-of-wedlock births have actually gone down since 1989, while marriage rates have gone up."

Regarding the Netherlands... "...In fact, "out of marriage" births have increased steadily since 1995, six years prior to the legalization of same-sex marriages." Media Matters

I still advocate civil unions with all of the benefits, although many would disagree with me. The the religiously minded get to keep the word "marriage." It would become merely a battle of semantics at that point. It's a freakin' word ferchisakes. the difference is only a word. The religious position becomes very weak at that point.

Fran said...

Rick Santorum - an ongoing embarrassment to Americans, Italian-Americans, Catholics, intelligent people and pretty much everyone for almost 50 years!

What an asshat.

And I am surprised that the fjords are still cutting deeply into the awesome landscape since that whole gay marriage thing ruined the country. Blogger Suzy lived there. I think it would get dark at like 3pm in the winter.

Now with this whole frothy, Santorum-y, gayness going on... The sun never shines there.

Oh Rick, we should have listened!

What a freaking loser.

BTW, may I recommend a great film to one and all... For the Bible Tells Me So is a great movie about lgbt people and how the Bible is always used against them.

Highly recommended even if you are not a churchy type. It is worth it to watch the one-time conservative Lutheran family from Minnesota stand up with their gay son and get arrested trying to talk to James Dobson.

Distributorcap said...

great post (as always) Jess

you sure knock the Sanatarium down --- but then again he is a good target

anyone who brings a dead fetus home for a funeral has a few loose sperms running around his testicles....

the best part is the world gets to see how insane he really is -- the sad part is there are people who actually think the pope is law.....

but amazing how $5 gas is making that crowd smaller and smaller

Freida Bee said...

Jess, This is one of the best posts I've read in a long time. Isn't the United States's heterosexual marriage trend on the decline as well, as well as out-of-wedlock births despite the illegality of gay marriage?

Churches can refuse to marry gay people all they want, but just watch those stats decrease further. After shackin' up with my "husband" for 1 years, I don't need a church, nor a governemnt, to tell me whether or not I am married.

Freida Bee said...

That's 10 years. Ha, the impact is a bit lessesned with 1 year. And it's sooo big otherwise. Did I say this is a great post? I'm putting it in my Blog Hall of Fame. Ooohhh.

s. douglas said...

I heard Ricky not only married his brother, but he gave him HPV.

Doorman-Priest said...

I so enjoyed reading this. I love it when self-important people have their silliness deconstructed.

dguzman said...

Great post, Jess. I can't believe anyone (even stupid people) listen to this idiot.

For all their "logic," I just want to ask these morons whether man/woman marriages in California and Massachusetts are falling apart as we speak, since those states "allow" gay marriage. I'm SURE the entire institution of marriage is now a complete sham!, and straights everywhere are running to their divorce lawyers because some gays got married. It's a national tragedy, really. I'm all broken up about it.

Jess Wundrun said...

D-the moment I heard you got married I looked at Ben and said "that's it! our marriage is OVER!"


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