Saturday, December 20, 2008

'Warren misstates marital history'

This aggravates me too. From Salon's War Room here.

If you haven't had a chance to read our own Mike Madden's fine reporting and analysis on the Obama-Warren controversy, it's good stuff. One statement from a video Rev. Rick taped in support of California's Prop 8, as partially quoted by Mike in the piece, really aggravates me.

That quote is this: "We should not let 2 percent of the population determine to change a definition of marriage" -- that definition being one man and one woman for life, of course, as he states moments earlier in the video -- "that has been supported by every single culture and every single religion for 5,000 years."

This is simply not true. Different cultures have supported different definitions of marriage, to include the following, ahem, deviations from the pastor's purported pristine, 5,000-year tradition: polygamy, marriages involving children and/or forced marriages, marriages for dowry, divorce and remarriage, and now, increasingly, same-sex marriage.

Sure, some of the above deviations from the mythic, Ozzie and Harriet norm do, technically, involve just one man and one woman (or in the case of children, one man and one girl). But Warren clearly intends to imply the voluntary, adult, non-coerced, loving, biological or maybe adoptive child-bearing, straight, monogamous version. To even hint that this model has obtained, only and everywhere, for five millenia is a lie. From a pastor's goateed mouth, no less. . . .

Times change, thank God. I'm so glad that, in my lifetime, homosexuality has been scientifically studied and revealed to have a biological basis. There's no longer any justification for treating gays and lesbians as sinners and deviants and undeserving of the rights that others enjoy.

And, by the way, Jesus never said anything at all about homosexuality, much less that it was "wrong."* He's a guy for our time.

And I'm no proselytizer, or even much of a believer nowadays.
*I used to have a red-letter edition of the King James Bible that my grandmother gave me for, I believe, a birthday present. (Unfortunately it got lost.) Everything Jesus actually said was printed in red type. Once I went through the entire New Testament, looking for something Jesus said about homosexuality. There was nothing, nothing even close. Why the evangelical Christians make such an issue of this nowadays is mostly based on hatred arising from fear and ignorance, while Jesus preached only love and forgiveness. And he certainly didn't preach exclusion from some stupid church. He was kind of anti-church himself, if I recall, and more concerned about the way society treated lepers and other social "misfits." I'm sure he'd be sympathetic to the gays nowadays.

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