REFLECTIONS: a fixing of the thoughts on something; careful consideration.
Johann Wagener 3-18-13
Johann Wagener 3-18-13
Let’s try to clear the air here! The institution of marriage is comprised of the joining of 2 (or more in some cases) people into a contractual “civil” agreement which is (but doesn’t have to be) validated or blessed in a variety of religious ceremonies depending on the sect or denomination one belongs to. There’s nothing in the fine print of civil contracts that specifies gender so anyone (with the exception of age) should have the right to enter into these civil unions regardless of gender.
When it comes to religion, it depends on the doctrines they adhere to and vary across denominations, sects, and civilizations. Mormons, for example endorsed one-way monogamy which allowed males to marry multiple women concurrently while the rest of society practiced ‘serial monogamy” having to divorce one partner before taking another. Civil rights don’t enter into these arrangement and the civil contracts are affected only by law and not religious beliefs. So, what is all the fuss about?
The issue for many people is not same-sex-marriage but same-sex-sex.
That’s right. When you get down to the specifics it’s mostly about sex. Who’s doing it and how are they doing it. Whether we want to admit it or not, our ‘reptilian brain” stills rules when it comes to sex; in that its driven for the sole purpose of procreating to ensure survival of the species. Nothing more, nothing less. So, for many of us, and all other living organisms on the planet, we stick to the tried and true; male/female sex.
Or, at least, that’s the way it was intended until free market forces introduced social more’s which succeeded in selling the idea that sex was much more than a function of procreation (at least for humans) and that it also symbolized romance, love and marriage. Bringing these elements together created a huge and profitable market for greeting cards, flowers, candy, perfumes, ocean cruises, wedding planners, and the catering industry, just to name a few of the businesses that thrive on this concept.
Still, somewhere in the grey matter our primitive survival instincts tells us that same sex-sex will not reproduce anything no matter how hard we try. Frankly, most heterosexuals (more males than females) are turned off by male-on-male sex which is supported by the lack of interest in gay porn, whereas hetero and lesbian porn sales are booming. Nearly $1 trillion globaly on the internet alone.
The gay marriage issue is a marketing tool and here’s how it works. In the past all the industries I mentioned were satisfied with the status quo; including the religious community.
All this changed in the last few decades. Freak “reality” TV replaced “soap operas.” Action packed, “blood lust”, overtook “romance” in films and videos. The only exception were “sex/lust” products being dished out by the porn industry and big Pharma’s “little blue pill” sex revival that has brought the “Cocoon” generation back to life; Cocoon (1985)
Even though few will readily admit it violence and porn attracts a large number of upstanding, law-abiding, God-fearing Americans who (discretely, of course) have no problem with, and seem to enjoy, looking in on 3-somes, 4-somes, girl-on-girl, whips and chains, leather, rubber, and a bag full of other toys used to satisfy their libidos and fetishes. Let’s not forget Playboy/Playgirl - type magazines that also continue fly off the shelves into someone's bedroom (or bathroom) while the rest of the print industry is collapsing.
Another important factor is that interest in marriage has become less popular with the younger generation. The wedding industry, which generates an enormous amount of revenue from marriages, (In 2011 alone, the wedding industry was worth $321 billion) has taken a big financial hit lately. In an effort to fill the growing vacuum created by mainstream society the focus has turned to the “alternative lifestyle” population and the “gay marriage” campaign has become the biggest cash cow the industry has seen since Princess Diana’s bash.
The reality is that money and profits trump all other issues; social, religious and political, so it should come as no surprise that the gay community has been welcomed with open arms by those who can profit from it.
Thanks to the outstanding efforts of the marketing industry the “alternative lifestyle” population has entered into the mainstream. This economical marriage between mainstream markets and these fringe groups has ironically also received a boost from the religious community because, along with the decline in marriages, church attendance has also been shrinking. In their efforts to beef up membership many churches have thrown out feelers to the gay community, assuring them that they were willing to minimize or overlook biblical references to the evils of homosexuality and, I believe, accurately interpret these biblical references as pertaining to the “act”, not the “condition.” Condemn the sin, not the sinner. Though reconciling the two requires a willingness to offer perpetual forgiveness. One could look at this process as a “reverse conversion” in that the followers are converting these churches to their way of thinking.
As for those who most strongly oppose the gay way of life; primarily heterosexual males, there’s an interesting recent study Watching porn boosts support for same-sex marriage which proposes;
A new scholarly analysis suggests that the more straight guys, especially those who are less educated, watch pornographic videos, the more they warm to same-sex marriage. The reason: Porn opens their mind up to accepting non-traditional sexual situations, like gay sex.
Few are willing to agree with these findings because it contradicts the popular talking points like “equal rights” or “love” and “marriage." The implication is that porn and gay sex have something in common and that it has nothing to do with either love or marriage.
None the less we persist to continue using “magical thinking” to avoid the reality that what we are really talking about is sex. A biological fact that is not going to change by dancing around it any more than making a fuss about guns and violence while at the same time entertaining ourselves with movies, video games, and freakish “reality” TV that reeks of it. Much like the Romans who filled coliseums to quench their lust for blood and the macabre.
Once we drop the pretenses of what is motivating these debates we can then begin to address “same-sex-sex.” Can we really say it’s any better or worse than what we already find acceptable in our mainstream culture? Having a conversation about sex without throwing in marriage, love, or equal rights will go a long way in putting this issue to rest.
Take the porn industry, for example,
Pornography is a big business in the United States, with total sales estimated to be $13.3 to 14 billion per year. INSIDE THE PORN BUSINESS yet how many of our neighbors or co-workers are up front about it? Porn? Who me?
Once that’s done we can go about addressing the other issues (sans sex) and begin applying common sense explanations to our real motives regarding equality, the marriage/romance industry, and the like.
As a "reformed hetero-homo-phobe" I’ve come to the conclusion that Jesus had it right when He is purported to have said to a crowd intent on stoning a sinner to death, “let he who is without sin, throw the first stone.”
In keeping to that standard, and following the golden rule of not mixing politics with religion, there should be no reason to continue this debate other than just for the sake of debate. Politically and economically same sex marriage is a non-issue. Sexual preference is a constitutional right and the markets that support it will continue to grow exponentially.