Saturday, December 13, 2008

Light To See By

Here's Jon Stewart of The Daily Show, going head to head with Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee on the subject of Gay Marriage.

H.T. to Dr. Ralph....

Huckabee argues that marriage has always meant one man and one woman, he argues that marriage is defined "anatomically" as between a man and a woman because of the need to create the next generation. He claims that through 5,000 years of recorded history, that's what it has always meant.

Stewart takes the easiest shot first. Marriage used to mean polygamy. (Think King Solomon, Abraham, etc.)

Stewart then asks if it would be ok to say that Hispanics can't get married.....

Huckabee responds that "there's a big difference in a person being black, and a person practicing a lifestyle and engaging in a marital relationship".

Throughout all of this, the studio audience is cheering Stewart. My question is, where the hell were all these people when California's Proposition 8 was being voted into law????? Huckabee claims that 68% of voters are opposed to gay marriage, but you wouldn't know it from listening to the people in this video. (My best guess is that there's a lot of difference between people in a herd, and individuals in a voting booth.)

Stewart winds things up by asking Governor Huckabee when he chose to not be gay.

The only point I would've added? Here's the Apostle Paul, in 1 Corinthians, Chapter 7, verse 1: "Now for the matters you wrote about: It is good for a man not to marry."

Paul goes on to write about how marriage is no better than a necessary evil, and how he has chosen to remain celibate. In verse 6, he says "I say this as a concession, not as a command. I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that."

Let's assume that Mike Huckabee is correct, and that Paul was divinely inspired when he wrote those words. It gives some perspective to the self-proclaimed superiority of the "Focus On The Family" people, doesn't it?

(Full Disclosure: I think that most of what Paul wrote was about as divinely inspired as The Daily Kos, or The Huffington Post. Half the time, the man was just blogging. If he'd had any idea that 2,000 years later, people in places he couldn't even imagine would be reading his stuff every Sunday and arguing about the true intent, he would've tightened up his prose a bit.)

Next point.....

Leslie Jordan is an actor, comedian and writer. He is as gay as a Barbra Streisand Film Festival, and has a new book out called "Down The Pink Carpet", which is about growing up not just gay, and not just effeminate (I know, I know, they're not the same thing), but growing up gay, effeminate, and almost freakishly flamboyant in a small town in the deep south. In the Southern Baptist Church. Surrounded by people who thought he'd outgrow it.

It didn't happen. It ain't gonna happen. But Leslie Jordan, in Mike Huckabee's worldview, is merely a confused heterosexual.

What a crock.

At one point in the book, Jordan talks about going to a helpful therapist/counselor to deal with some family issues and resentments, and this therapist explained that Jordan's father "was doing the best he could with the light he had to see by". Jordan Sr's inability to understand his obviously gay son was like the racism (by our standards) found in the words and writing of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln didn't have as much light to see by.

Which gets us back to Mike Huckabee. On the issue of gays and lesbians having a "choice" in their sexual orientation, we now have plenty of "light to see by". It's high noon with a clear sky. We're standing in the middle of the football field with the floodlights on. We're holding flashlights.

Anyone with eyes to see, and an ounce of compassion buried in their creeds, superstitions, and dogmas - anyone can tell that gays and lesbians aren't confused heterosexuals. They didn't choose to be the way they are. Many of them have gone through stages where they would give anything in the world to be just like everyone else.

There came a time when theologians had to give up the idea of a flat earth, the sun rotating around the earth, infant damnation, and the existence of witches. (If you just finished reading that sentence, and thought to yourself that the scriptures in question aren't "wrong", but were just misinterpreted? Get some professional help. Leslie Jordan can recommend a good therapist.)

We now have plenty of light to see by.


Nick M said...

The most repugnant argument contra gay marriage is that it devalues the het sort.

OK. In what way does Dave and Bob down the road getting married devalue my marriage? Please answer that. It doesn't mean I love my wife any less. It doesn't mean I'm going to go off with Pete. It is a matter of supernatural irrelevance to me. I'm sure somebodies got married in Thailand today and it's that relevant.

The only way it matters to any but the principles is if you yank out the whole "society" line and then we're in trouble because that's saying gay marriage is "bad" for society but straight marriage is "good" for society.

Which is an horrendous thought. My marriage has nothing to do with society. It is entirely to do with me and my wife.

Mike Huckabee can go Fuckabee as far as I'm concerned and I have no pink dog in this fight.

Dr Ralph said...

WS -- thanks for the shout-out and even bigger thanks for expanding on the Huckabee-Stewart debate.

For me it was one of the most amazing political moments of 2008--far more interesting than any of the 90 minute "debates" during the election cycle. Stewart's "When did you decide not to be gay?" pretty much sums things up.

As to where the cheering throng in the studio audience was when Proposition 8 was being passed in California, one suspects they were in New York, where the Daily Show is taped. Even though Los Angeles and San Francisco get most of the press attention, most of the rest of California is fairly conservative. This is the state that gave us Ronald Reagan.

One final note, as the Token Democrat around here: the issue of gay rights -- gay marriage rights in particular -- is one area where the Democrats have been shamefully craven, and where the Libertarian Party is to be commended (not that I should have to say this, but I am a happily married straight male).

Those of you who know me, know my position on gun control. As much as it pains my bleeding heart to say, if I were horse-trading with the Libertarians, I'd gladly vote for gun rights in exchange for the guarantee of gay marriage rights.

Uncle Fester said...

It was great to see Stewart really back Huckabee into a corner. I just wish Stewart had asked the question on every libertarian mind when the subject of marriage is brought up, "why is government involved in the marriage process anyway".

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