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home : opinions : opinions May 26, 2016

6/22/2014 7:02:00 AM
Commentary: Support of traditional marriage is not to be confused with hate speech

Kathryn Lopez

"All day long, some of them tended to the dying and to their burial, countless numbers with no one to care for them. Others gathered together, from all parts of the city, a multitude of those withered from famine, and distributed bread to them all."

At a recent event in Washington, D.C., San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone quoted from Eusebius, a historian who chronicled pagan Rome. Having Christians around (the "them" in the above quote,) wasn't the worst thing in the world. They'd stick around and care for you when you were sick and forgotten.

In today's outrage-fueled media cycle, human stories often get lost unless used they're for propaganda. This is a predominant reality of our current culture. We opine about decisions or activities without ever having facts. This is who we are as a tweeting, blogging, status-updating people.

And so during what has become an annual March for Marriage in our nation's capital, Cordileone made a plea: "Please do not make judgments based on stereotypes, media images and comments taken out of context. Rather, get to know us first as fellow human beings."

He was responding to a group of politicians and activists protesting his involvement in the march.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who took to excoriating Cordileone, too, might not agree, but her city's archbishop is worth taking a moment to listen to, whatever you make of the ongoing marriage debate.

At the event he also said: "Every child comes from a man and a woman, and has a right, a natural human right, to know and be known by, to love and be loved by, their own mother and father. This is the great public good that marriage is oriented towards and protects. The question is then: does society need an institution that unites children to the mothers and fathers who bring them into the world, or doesn't it?"

That's not hate speech. That's taking a moment to pause and consider why government should have anything to do with marriage in the first place.

Cordileone suggests that there can be "no justice, no peace, no end to poverty, without a strong culture of marriage and the family." He points to our modern reality: "All we have to do is look around and see that our society is broken and hurting in so many ways ... We need to fix our economy; we especially need to pay a living wage to working-class families; we need to fix our broken immigration system; we need to improve our schools, especially those that are failing children from poorer families."

But to fix these things, Cordileone insists that we must first "rebuild a marriage culture, a culture which recognizes and supports the good of intact families, built on the marriage between a man and a woman committed to loving faithfulness to each other and to their children."

That's what this country should be about. Individually, we may wind up choosing something else, wanting something else, doing something else. But can we reflect on what's common about human nature and what's good for a society?

The Catholic Church's teaching about the true nature of marriage is no condemnation of people who are gay. We simply believe that two people of the same sex should be unable to marry. That is not to say that gay people cannot experience deep friendships, commitment, loyalty, generosity and love, just like anyone else. It is to say that men and women were made for each other in a unique and complementary way by God. Such a union is something that we believe cannot occur between two people of the same gender.

The capacity of a man and woman to procreate gives their union special and unique significance. This complementarity and the capacity that exists for the creation of a new person are essential to marriage, even when this potentiality is not fully realized, as in the case with couples who divorce or couples are unable or choose not to have children.

We live in a fast-paced time. So if we can take a news event -- in 140 characters, or a short video, or a quick conversation -- to draw people into something deeper, we might impart a bigger picture than our computer screens, news debates, and certainly political campaigns typically show. If we try to encounter people instead of bludgeon them, we might be surprised whom we meet and what good, beauty and truth we're drawn to.

Kathryn Lopez is the editor-at-large of National Review Online www.nationalreview.com. She can be contacted at klopez@nationalreview.com.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, June 30, 2014
Article comment by: Amazing how the haters are trying to deflect this.

Alleging that the LGBTQ community has been writing 'hate filled rants' is ridiculous at best. A simple review of the comments both in response to this letter and previous letters will bear proof that the only folks ranting in a hate filled way, and calling names are the ones claiming that the others are doing so.

As evidenced by several comments warning Mary Jane and whatever others are speaking in kind, that they are only proving whom the hateful people really are with every added comment.

So once more...there is no hate from the LGBTQ side of this...only the expectation of equal and fair treatment. If that is what you call name calling and hate filled rants then that is your view to have but rational and reasonable folks still see your words for what they really are. Attempts to justify your position of anger or disgust at that which you fear or know little about. While that is human nature, one might hope that your stated belief in a loving god might appeal to your kinder angels in trying to understand the simplicity of the issue and the way that you are hurting your own position by clinging to your prior thoughts on the issue rather than evolving to accept and love all gods children, last we heard he did not make mistakes.

Unless you are willing to throw your own beliefs under the bus out of hatred for gods own children?

Posted: Monday, June 30, 2014
Article comment by: Pretense = Hatred

The hatred of the militant homosexuals for all religions is easily understood. In their minds it is inconceivable that every religion in history repudiates their lifestyle when Hollywood seeks to validate their deviancy at every turn.

Adults having the right to engage in any behavior they wish to is quite American. It is the retribution that the homosexual militants wish to wreak on society for their refusal to redefine marriage that is really what society finds most repulsive. Brad and Angelina's opinions on the subject don't matter, sorry to say!

If you accept the pretense that homosexuality is the equal to heterosexuality (thereby discarding 50,000 generations of wisdom from every society on Earth) you should be prepared for the consequences. If your third grade child is reading about the romance of Tom Sawyer and Becky Thatcher, is it not discriminatory not to rewrite the story depicting the real romance to be between Tom and Huck Finn? After all, if your son thinks girls are icky in first grade, maybe the teacher should teach him that there is an alternative that might even be better than girls. Maybe those feelings are really homosexuality manifesting itself. We better explore that possibility kids. After all, we want to celebrate sexual deviancy with our children starting in preschool, right? Is this what we want schools to teach our children? No? Then STOP the pretenses and the fake issues that the homosexual movement wishes to impose on the world.

The reason that you don't see any responses to these assertions, but rather name calling and hate filled rants, is that they know their position is indefensible! They know it, I know it and you know it!

Posted: Monday, June 30, 2014
Article comment by: For What Would Be

The Precedence

You say: "The idea that we have to pander to militant homosexual's anger regarding the world's religious societies' universal repudiation of their behavior is nonsense!"

I say: The only nonsense here is A) your warped misperception that same-sex love is answerable to organized religion for how it can and cannot conduct themselves and commitment within their relationships, and B) That their doing so fearlessly is so hopelessly skewed in your mind as "hatred".

It couldn't be more obvious who's doing the hating here, and anyone who actually comprehends the core truth of religion and spirituality knows that it's living love and compassion for ALL.

Time to get a clue...

Posted: Saturday, June 28, 2014
Article comment by: What would be the Precedence

for redefining marriage for the world's societies? Since all law is based on precedence, what societies have ever described marriage as anything but a union of man and woman?

Not since the first recorded codification of laws around the time of Hammurabi has any society EVER considered homosexual relationships to be anything other a sexual behavior, sometimes tolerated and sometimes not. The government's recognition of the Church's rite of marriage doesn't give it the right to redefine it. If the government determines that the recognition of homosexual unions in warranted, all they have to do is allow a civil union contract.

The idea that we have to pander to militant homosexual's anger regarding the world's religious societies' universal repudiation of their behavior is nonsense!

Posted: Friday, June 27, 2014
Article comment by: Shall we keep handing Mary Jane shovels ?

Every time she replies to a calm and reasoned point she seems to dig her self deeper and deeper into a hole of her own making.

So please Mary Jane...proceed.

There can be no confusion with this speech, over an and over again it is clear that while they claim a peaceful origin... the outcome is hate filled plain and simple.

Posted: Friday, June 27, 2014
Article comment by: Reply to Mary Jane By But Mary Jane...

Who do I want dictating the rites of first communion, confirmation and marriage? How about any one of the 4200 organized religions as these are rites, not rights. And yes, I want the state defining marriage - not you, or your choice of religion, so that it is fair and equal to the citizens of these United States.
Maybe you don't remember or have never been married, but the ceremony of marriage conducted by a religion, is conceived in the eyes of your God only - you still have to get a marriage license, which is issued by whom? The State.

Posted: Thursday, June 26, 2014
Article comment by: Mary Jane

@ But Mary Jane...

Why is it a continual battle of straw man arguments with proponents of homosexual redefinition of marriage?

Read the bill of rights, it is not a choice of Church or State. But let us proceed using your favorite techniques, eh? Who do you want dictating the rites of first communion, confirmation and marriage? The State I presume? After all, according to you, the government's rights to impose its wishes trump all, right? Oh wait, there's that pesky Constitution again! How will you ever get around that?

Oh, I know! Civil contracts. No need to redefine marriage to assuage the anger of militant homosexuals! WOW, problem solved!

Posted: Thursday, June 26, 2014
Article comment by: Mary Jane

@ Oh bull...

How about you tell us what to do with the 100's of young men pushed out of their homes and community so as not to compete with the elder's acquisition of new child brides!

Seems that homosexuals and polygamists have something in common, eh? PEDOPHILIA! Every perversion has its dark side, yet you want to promote everything sexual as something wholesome and to be celebrated. Hey, I know what we should do! Redefine 50,000 generations of accumulated wisdom regarding marriage to assuage homosexual/pedophile guilt!! NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Article comment by: But Mary Jane...

Quoting you, "The constitution protects our freedom OF religion FROM government interference." Take your pick, which would you prefer, to have marriage defined by the government or "the world's religious communities". Which is it you truly want, church or state?

Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Article comment by: Not confused at all .

It is just your flowery way of excusing your hate speech.

And it's pretty clear that most folks that post agree.

Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Article comment by: Oh bull, Mary Jane

Social stigma is "a recipe for disaster, mental illness, drug/alcohol abuse and lifelong dysfunction."

But let me ask you and Kathryn Lopez and everyone else on this thread:

What is your position on the 7,000-some residents of Colorado City?

Are they all brainwashed or perverts, as the media would have us believe? Or are they simply people who prefer a polygamous communal lifestyle--and have become insular and paranoid after repeated attacks from a series of ambitious Arizona Attorney Generals?

Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Article comment by: As we read Mary Janes comments we can just see the 'absolutely seething hatred'-

It is in her words her phrasing and her diction.

Here we have the classic deflection taking place, the pot meet kettle moment.

As she attempts to call out the object of her almost fetish like source of angst... she is proving their point over and over in spades.

The best thing Mary Jane can do to support the very thing she abhors is to keep lobbing her slings and arrows, steeling those simply looking for equality, and ensuring them that they are on the right side of the issue.

Posted: Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Article comment by: Thank you Wacka

-- for making my point better than I did!

Posted: Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Article comment by: The Goatherder

I support traditional marriage 100%. For myself and spouse and anyone else who wishes to be in a heterosexual union. I would not presume to know what's best for or interfere with the equal protection under the law for others who see things differently.
My marriage is not threatened by anyone else's wishes and I fail to see why it needs "protecting".

Posted: Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Article comment by: Mary Jane

Support of homosexual marriage is not to be confused with free speech!

The absolutely seething hatred of those who promote the pretense that homosexuality and heterosexuality is easy to see. To promote lies, one must act with a complete lack of tolerance for others.

The homosexual lobby now wants to violate the constitution by forcing all religions to accept the lie that their behavior is something to celebrate and teach to our children as somehow equal to the natural behavior dictated by Darwinian evolutionary standards.

Nobody is telling anyone what kind of sexual behavior they may engage in. The argument is about whether we allow homosexuals to redefine marriage for the world's religious communities. The constitution protects our freedom OF religion FROM government interference. If you wish to pander to the homosexual community for the sake of political correctness, you will have to do with civil union contracts.

The homosexual lobby seeks to punish the world for its repudiation of their sexual behavior by forcing them to redefine marriage. Everyone instinctually knows that homosexual behavior is a recipe for disaster, mental illness, drug/alcohol abuse and lifelong dysfunction.

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