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NOM is founded on generalized animus. Here's its cofounder making that clear

by Jeremy Hooper

Screen Shot 2011-06-29 At 9.41.18 AmLest you think the National Organization For Marriage is built, fundamentally, on much more than animus for the idea that certain sexual orientations are anything beyond an affront to sexual "norms," let's examine some of the latest quotes from NOM co-founder Robert George (pic). All quips come from an interview with National Review Online's Kathryn Lopez:

"The vote in New York to redefine marriage advances the cause of loosening norms of sexual ethics, and promoting as innocent — and even 'liberating' — forms of sexual conduct that were traditionally regarded in the West and many other places as beneath the dignity of human beings as free and rational creatures."
"...New York has abolished marriage as a matter of civil law and replaced it with a counterfeit that New Yorkers’ children and grandchildren will be taught to accept and approve as if it were the real thing. What New York now offers its citizens is 'marriage' in name only. In reality, it doesn’t give marriage to same-sex partners — the nature of marriage makes that impossible, just as it makes it impossible to offer marriage to parties of three or more persons in polyamorous sexual partnerships. Rather, it takes away the legal recognition of marriage — a comprehensive union of persons ordered to having and rearing a family (on procreation’s intrinsic link to marriage, see here and here) — and offers in its place legal recognition of a form of domestic partnership for romantic-sexual partners (in pairs for now, but that will not hold), be they same-sex or opposite-sex. Because these domestic partnerships are not actually marriages, despite the appropriation of the label; there is no intelligible basis in them for the norms of monogamy, exclusivity, and the pledge of permanence that structure and help to define marriage as historically understood in our law and culture. Of course, many people’s understanding of, and authentic commitment to, these norms has already eroded substantially since the 1960s under the pressure of sexual-revolution ideology. They will now erode further, though for a while some people who are still 'evolving' (as President Obama might put it) toward the complete embrace of that ideology will be moved by sentimentality (which will seem increasingly quaint) and the residue of the 'old morality' to cling to the belief that 'marriages' (same-sex or opposite-sex) should be monogamous and sexually exclusive. And the erosion of these beliefs (and practices in line with them) will further wound our communities — especially mothers, children, and the poor."
"...[T]he whole edifice of sexual-liberationist ideology is built on damaging and dehumanizing falsehoods. It has already done enormous harm — harm that falls on everybody, but disproportionately on those in the poorest and most vulnerable sectors of our society.
"Marriage is a profound human and social good; its weakening and loss is a tragedy from which affluent people can be distracted (and protected) by their affluence for only so long. The institution of marriage has already been deeply wounded by divorce at nearly plague levels, widespread non-marital sexual cohabitation, and other damaging factors. To redefine it out of existence in law is to make it much more difficult to restore a sound understanding of marriage on which a healthy marriage culture can be rebuilt for the good of all. It is to sacrifice the needs of the poor, who are hurt the most when a sound public understanding of marriage and sexual morality collapses. It is to give up on the truth that children need both a father and mother, and benefit from the security of their love for each other."
FULL INTERVIEW: Sex and the Empire State [NRO]

Robert George's case is, at root, built around the idea that homosexuality is a lesser than. A flaw. A fluke, at best. Homosexuality is positioned as an abnormality, with anti-equality advocate George seemingly wanting to return to a time when gay people were "regarded in the West and many other places as beneath the dignity of human beings as free and rational creatures." That is the only rational interpretation of the NOM co-founder's words, all of which position loving gay bonds as a destruction of righteousness. Words that paint gay acceptance as pushing "damaging and dehumanizing falsehoods."

But here's the thing: LGBT people exist. Few debate that, even if they see the existence as wrong or objectionable or even "changeable." Also, same-sex couples already exist in committed partnerships. Again, few debate this. So what we are talking about, with the modern civil marriage conversation, is how we honor -- or at the very least accommodate -- the full spectrum of two-partner bonds, with the prevailing consideration of whether or not sexual orientation is a valid enough reason on which to discriminate against certain kinds of tax payers. Increasingly, people (and courts) are realizing the answer is no. Now, if anyone advocating for any of the other causes that people like Robert George so regularly throw in the face of gay equality activists wish to reach such a strong "no" consensus, then that movement's practitioners will have to make their own strong case. The gay equality movement has already made such case. The marriage equality movement is winning, largely.

When Mr. George positions gay orientations as "sexual-liberationist" or frames this conversation as "loosening norms of sexual ethics," he's not really considering the legal questions on the table -- he is laying bear the generalized animus that underlies the whole NOM mindset. From there, all of his views about same-sex marriages springboard off of the irrational (and extremely offensive) notion that acknowledging the always-present reality of LGBT somehow leads to degradation. Again: There is no other logical interpretation of his words! He is coming right out and admitting it! Without these unfortunate views, Robert George would have no reason to oppose civil equality for a population that has so fully committed itself to making a credible case. Or at the very least, he would focus on legal concretes rather than fearful canards that wantonly throw mud at both the discourse in general, as well at the good, decent people on one side of it.

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