Tradition includes more than heterosexuals
I was appalled to read the line at the bottom of the letter ?Same-sex marriages not morally acceptable.? It reads, ?Ed Matusek is a first-year student in the philosophy Ph.D. program.?
I would have expected such poor reasoning of a freshman, perhaps even a sophomore … but this person has (supposedly) been exposed to the myriad of philosophies and moralities that make up our modern world, and is still this narrow-minded? At least I can hope he did not receive his prior degrees from this school.
Let?s examine his argument. In essence, he?s stating that bigotry is and should be acceptable because it has been before and attempts to play semantics games with the use of the word ?tradition.?
His claim that the so-called ?moral aspects? of the issue are being ignored and assumes there is only one morality regardless of whether you call it his or William Bennett?s.
Tradition, as used by those desirous of solemnifying gay unions, is not a desire to blindly accept all the ignorance and prejudice of the past, but to gain the benefits afforded those who adhere to customs that one could reasonably argue should not be used to provide special rights in the first place.
Even in heterosexual relationships, why should government grant more rights to those who choose to undergo a religious ceremony? The most arbitrary part of the argument here is government-sanctioned unions, period.
As for ?sanctity and uniqueness of heterosexual marriage,? those are unusual words applied to a concept that would receive a failing grade in the classroom if percentage of success is the goal. Is Matusek really afraid gay marriages will be more successful than straight ones?
?Advocates of same-sex unions should begin realizing how such approval would encourage the advancement of even more unconventional and socially harmful practices.? Such as?
As if the political sphere alone doesn?t provide plenty of evidence that a plethora of nonmarital behavior isn?t already going on … is his goal to encourage hypocrisy?
And why does every homophobic bigot have to mention pedophilia, an entirely different subject from relationships between consenting adults? Most pedophilia is heterosexual, not homosexual.
Matusek forgets (as do most who cite the tale) that Pandora?s box also included hope. Even if one agrees that opening the box would bring more evils into the world (obviously, I do not, given the choice between more gay/lesbian students and friends or more close-minded homophobes, I?d choose the former.), it would also bring the hope for a more tolerant society in general.
Brent Yaciw is an adjunct instructor in the Department of English.