I have been spending alot of time on various websites studying and debating issues that are near and dear to my heart such as protecting traditional marriage and the plausibility of the theory of climate change. The following is a response I wrote to a well-meaning advocate of same-sex marriage over at Pajamas Mediawho couldn't fathom what all the fuss was about or what harm 2 people who love each other getting married could have on anyone else. It went on a bit longer than I anticipated, but it describes well my heart for marriage and children:
For centuries, the institution of marriage, whether the law recognized it or not, has been between one man and one woman for the primary purpose of bearing children. Why is this good? Because if people weren’t getting hitched and having kids, we wouldn’t be here. It’s a matter of survival.
Fact: Children grow up healthier and more balanced when they are raised by their biological mother and father who are in a committed relationship (marriage).
I am describing the ideal situation for the main benefactor of marriage: children. They are the next generation. If we screw them up, our society is also screwed.
The 60’s (the “me” era, sexual revolution, feminism, Eastern religion…) ushered in a whole new concept of relationships that are very sexualized, and sex has become more about personal gratification than procreating. When people get counseled in preparation for marriage, they are invariably told to “plan” their families; don’t have kids right away, take a vacation, see the world before you get “weighted down” with offspring. The parenting philosophy of today is centered on the parents; making sure they get lots of “me” time and rest, because after all, mommies and daddies are better mommies and daddies when the are in a good mood and aren’t all worn out from parenting, right?
My point is, marriage is ultimately about children, and children have become an after-thought, something to do when the “real fun” is over. This also applies to same sex marriage and what I described as the ideal environment in which to raise children. Let's say 2 committed, in love, homosexual men decide they want to get married and make a family. It’s the American dream, right? So it sounds fair, just let them do it. To accomplish this, we loosen up the definition of marriage a little, what’s the harm? Ted and Steve buy a house together, make out their wills and share a common name as a sign of their love and commitment.
The next logical step is to have children… but here we have an obvious problem, don’t we? The newlyweds have no choice but to adopt, so they do. Or maybe they find a woman big-hearted enough to be artificially inseminated with either of their sperm and carry the baby to term. Voila! Ted and Steve are a white picket fence and a dog away from the complete American dream! And why shouldn’t they have all this?
1. Marriage isn’t recognized and supported by the state so you and I can “pronounce our undying love”. This is drivel we inherited from the generation of “me”, who are focused less on serving their fellow man than fulfilling their own personal desires.
2. The children that will result from either being adopted and raised by Ted and Steve, or the surrogate situation I described will not be raised in the “ideal”, so why do it? Ted and Steve have very compelling reasons for wanting children. They are driven by their desire to paint the perfect family picture and prove that “family” can mean more than it has traditionally. They want to make a powerful political statement about their community. The problem with these motives, regardless of how noble they may sound is how self-centered they are; parenthood should be child-centered, not parent-centered. If you want kids for any other reason than to serve them, then you are starting off on the wrong foot and shouldn’t bother.
This same thing applies to single people wanting children, unmarried heterosexuals who don’t want to marry, or any other situation you can dream up that ISN’T 2 biological, opposite sex people.
The real reason marriage is so good for America is that it creates and fosters the next generation so in 20 years there IS an America.
We should remember that God originally defined marriage, and He loves it dearly. Changing it's definition is no small thing and the impact will not be a good one should it happen.