Hobbes saidHey guys,
I have a Mormon friend who I've known for 9 years is coming here to visit me in a few days to have an inevitable and heated discussion about the passing of Proposition 8. She knows I'm gay and I got a feeling she'll rebound her beliefs of marriage from the bible. She was very happy and approved of the Supreme Court's decision. She posted her remarks on Facebook that "We are in for the fight of our lives". Do you think I should tell her that I would like to be happy and married someday without any ramifications? What should I do to keep my friendship?
How the hell
do you maintain-- do you want
to maintain-- a friendship with someone who opposes your happiness, your full rights as a citizen, and your dignity based on superstitious gobbledygook? And a Mormon
? Who the hell are Mormons
to tell anybody
about a shared social standard of marriage? I wouldn't want to be friends with someone who didn't grasp the irony of their own prejudice. But... if you want to try and make your case to her... without using the terms "stupid" or "bigot"... ugh... let's see.
"You don't understand this: you're free to believe what ever
you want-- you can believe in Mormonism if that's your choice, and religious belief is
a choice, unlike my feelings for men-- but this country was founded
so that people could be free from religious persocution. It was colonized by people who wanted to be free from the faith-based oppression back home, and when it fought for its independence the people who wrote its constitution enshrined the principle that a person or group's religious beliefs should not be the basis of the laws that everyone-- believers and non-believers alike-- have to live under; otherwise this would be a religious dictatorship or a theocracy like Iran.
So when you and your ilk take your personal
religious beliefs and you pressure the politicians who were elected to serve everybody
, me included, to write into the law that I am not free to marry-- to form a legal contract with the person I love
before the government-- because we're both men, you're destroying this country and you're hurting me. You're saying I'm less of a citizen and less of a human being. And you're saying that if tomorrow a 51 percent majority of people in this country (or state) decided Mormons shouldn't be allowed to get married, then that would be fair too because in a democracy 'anything goes' as long as more people agree than disagree.
What you don't get is that our government is supposed to treat us just the same as citizens; if there aren't two different classes of tax-paying, law-abiding citizens-- "male citizens" and "female citizens"-- then it's unjust to say that I can't marry another consenting adult because we're both men; saying I can only
marry a woman says that only a woman can 'complete' me and that's no one's call to make but my own.
And finally, by supporting a law that bans me marrying the partner of my choice you're actually discriminating against other religions
too, because there are faiths and churches that will
marry two people of the same sex. So you've made the government a threat not just to non-believers but also to people who believe differently
from you. You're attacking the values that are supposed to make this the 'greatest nation on Earth' all because you think you know how God feels about the way I have sex, which is immodest at best, you claiming to understand the mind of an all-powerful being.
Whatever you want to believe, you can believe, but your faith is yours
, it's private, between you and whatever god you believe in, that's your private
life that you're entitled to while you deal with the government of this land. But in my
private life, I want to marry another man; that doesn't effect you, it doesn't injure you, it doesn't have any effect whatsoever
on you-- it's between me, and that man, and the government that we elect and pay our taxes to. When you intrude into my private life and my relationship with the government, you're being un-American, and you're being a bad friend,
and I wish you would understand all of this and stop hurting me
You can parse and paraphrase and whatever, but that's the speech I'd give or the letter I'd write if for some bizarre reason I decided to try and discuss gay marriage and
remain friends with someone who thought they had the right to attack my citizenship and my personhood with their pre-Enlightenment, Sun-revolves-around-the-Earth, special-underwear-protect-me-from-the-forces-of-evil, women-are-wives-and-mothers-and-all-but-property-of-their-fathers-or-husbands bullshit. But more likely, I'd tell such a person to get the hell out of my home and my life before I doused them with lighter fluid and lit them on fire.