Sunday, March 31, 2013

Huh, ya think?

Ross Douthat:
"Yet for an argument that has persuaded so few, the conservative view has actually had decent predictive power. As the cause of gay marriage has pressed forward, the social link between marriage and childbearing has indeed weakened faster than before. As the public’s shift on the issue has accelerated, so has marriage’s overall decline.... 
"Correlations do not, of course, establish causation." (itals added)
But we needn't let such science-y nitpicking spoil a good piece of mindless bloviating, need we?

I do hope Douthat is correct when he frets that marriage equality is damn near inevitable. I like to think that this has something to do with it being so obviously good and fair, and so harmless even to those who personally find homosexuality icky. But perhaps it also reflects just how utterly lame some of the conservative arguments have been. My favorite is the claim, cited by Douthat in his column, that marriage is all about procreation. I actually have some sympathy for the notion that if the state has a legitimate interest in regulating the institution of marriage, it has something to do with children, aka procreation. The problem is that almost any nitwit understands that procreation is not mostly about fertilizing an ovum by sticking a convex body part into a concave body part, fun as that may be. It is, rather, mostly to do with the complex and resource-intensive process of raising to adulthood the next generation of functional human beings. This usually takes a little more time and commitment than the initial sticking in and out of body parts. In this view, marriage is about honoring and facilitating this commitment. Hard to believe heterosexuals have a monopoly on that.

No comments:

Post a Comment