More Marriage Responses

Continuing my discussion with POUNDS from yesterday…

So, absent the religious belief that the purpose of marriage is to procreate (and your very interesting assertion that it serves to “tame” the beast that males essentially are), what function is served by having the civil law decide who to include or exclude?

This question almost strikes me as a non sequitur. If we establish that society benefits from promoting the ideal of a mother and a father at the head of a family, then, absent any religious considerations, it makes sense that society should encourage that ideal in the civil law by holding to marriage’s current definition. What societal benefit comes from equating a non-marriage relationship – same sex, multiple spouses, or whatever – to marriage?

And you can spare me the response about incest.

I don’t have one.

(I mean half of the Oklahoma Panhandle would already be ……… no wait I better not finish that thought. Although, I am reminded of the old joke about “What do you call a 13 year old girl in Alabama who can run faster than her 14 year old brother?” ……. Answer: a virgin)

That’s the old face of Alabama. This is the new one:


The other question I have is: How do you determine which “foundational principles of civilization” are so immutable that they are beyond evolution, refinement, or even outright abolition? Certainly things like slavery, polytheism, women as chattel, primogeniture, and many other concepts were historically considered to be foundations of civilization. Later we came to realize that changing or eliminating them were the true measures of a civilized society.

This strikes me as a bit of a feint. Are you arguing that marriage is equivalent to slavery? You’re right that we shouldn’t revere marriage solely because it’s ancient, but it seems as if you’re suggesting tossing it out for the same reason. I think marriage’s long pedigree means it should not be tossed aside lightly, but I also think there are demonstrable societal benefits that argue in its favor. Antiquity is certainly a consideration, but not the only one.

Surprisingly, I really don’t feel that strongly, either way. I was just asking some questions. I would like to understand your perspective better. Personally, I think those with the most to gain from the legalization of gay marriage will be divorce lawyers!

Respectfully, POUNDS

Well stated, sir.

Now let’s move on to Abbot of Arbroath’s comments:

No your not a bigot or a homophobe or filled with hate – simply a reducationist.

I looked up “reducationist” and came up empty. Redactionist? Reeducationist?

Marriage existed before Christianity and before nation states – something people in the US get confused with since their country was formed after both ideas had taken ground.

Yes. Although I think this point favors my position – i.e. marriage is a fundamental element of civilization that should not be tampered with lightly.

Marriage is not immutable as a defined good: Women were material wealth once, some family connections through marriage are forbidden in come countries some not, inter religion marriage was illegal, inter racial marriage punishable by death, divorce was illegal or at other times divorce was easy.

All this is true, although I think it’s tangential to the topic at hand. Marriage has had much baggage attached to it over the years, much of it unpleasant, but the central nature of the institution has always been between a man and a woman.

Ironically to your case, polygamy is the GOLD standard of marriage and that is YOUR beliefs.

I, personally, am the preeminent authority on what I believe, and I can categorically state that I don’t believe polygamy to be the gold standard of marriage.

Marraige is between a man and women. Now, if you dont have the cojones to stand up and act according to your scriptural beliefs and fight the federal and state laws then thats your beans

You’re creating a straw man here, one who believes that polygamy should be legal. That’s not me. I’d be happy to discuss the theological issues involved, but you’re misrepresenting my position.

(it would also address the reality of decreasing attendance Roll as ineffective missions would be replaced by highly effective pregnancy!)

Again, you’re wandering far afield. Low conversion rates by Mormon missionaries are a separate discussion entirely.

I am sympathic to polygamy on religious grounds – does not mean I would ever want one! In South Africa, a liberl democracy it is a right and the President has 3 wives.


So pretending marriage arrived in 1620 or was revealed from heaven intact is wrong.

Again, by making that point, you’re arguing with someone other than me.

The LDS church has been against every form of social progress since its inception ( and same sex marriage is no different).

That’s certainly debatable, but it’s changing the subject. A topic for another day, perhaps.

Even the LDS church will whitewashes its past and adopt a different strategy. Mormons are survivors first and foremost.

Look, I know you’re no fan of the church, but my purpose in discussing these things is not necessarily to defend or even be consistent with any supposed LDS official position. I think there’s a reasonable, secular case to be made that redefining marriage is a rotten idea, and that’s the case I’m trying to make. You can maintain that what I’ve said is going to get me in trouble with my Mormon overlords, but I find that discussion to be singularly uninteresting.

Religion, Politics, and Holy Matrimony
Winding it Up

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