Gay Marriage Revisited

28 May

Reading a bit of C. S. Lewis this morning, and ran across this in his essay “Priestesses in the Church?” – a clip from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice:

“I should like Balls infinitely better”, said Caroline Bingley, “if they were carried on in a different manner . . . It would surely be much more rational if conversation instead of dancing made the order of the day.” 

 “Much more rational, I dare say,” replied her brother, “but it would not be near so much like a Ball.”

 It immediately occurred to me that this is a part of my objection to gay “marriage”.  It is not so much that I object to any kind of legal coupling of gay people, or perhaps even two heterosexuals of the same sex.  Rather it is the implication of a conversation that goes like this:

 “I should like the institution of Marriage infinitely better”, says person A, “if it were carried on in a different manner.  It would certainly be much more rational if it covered the union of any two people instead of being constrained as between a man and a woman.”

 “Much more rational, I dare say,” comes the reply, “but it would not be near so much like Marriage”.

 I’m sure Miss Bingley’s brother would have had no problem with formally defining a form of entertainment that consisted of conversation instead of dancing.  But, after all, a Ball was a Ball.  By the same token, if same-sex “couples” want to be formally attached to each other, let’s just define the tool to do that, not alter the definition of Marriage that is understood by billions of people throughout the world as between a man and a woman.

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