Defending Traditional Marriage

Glenn Greenwald at Salon talks about Rush Limbaugh's fourth marriage and wonders about how this relates to being against gay marriage:

As is so often the case, the Traditional Marriage movement is led by people who discard their wives and get new, younger replacements the way most people change underwear. That's how so many Americans sit on their sofas next to their second and third spouses, with their step-children and half-siblings surrounding them, and explain -- without any recognition of the irony -- that they're against same-sex marriage because they believe the law should only recognize Traditional Marriages. And it's how Rush Limbaugh can hide from his followers that, by demanding state recognition for his fourth "marriage," he himself believes "that traditional marriage should not have privileged status." As usual, all of the actual rules of Traditional Marriage are casually discarded when it comes to the law (all that dreary, annoying stuff about "till death do us part" and "in sickness and in health" and "for as long as we both shall live") and the only one that's maintained is the one that is easy and cost-free for most Traditional Marriage proponents people to fulfill (the one about needing "a man and a woman").

As the gay Wired writer Steve Silberman wrote yesterday: "Between them, Gingrich and Limbaugh have had 7 marriages. And they want to abolish my one."

H/T Daily Dish

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13 thoughts on “Defending Traditional Marriage”

  1. Clearly, the entire argument against gay marriage has been undermined because Gingrich and Limbaugh have had multiple wives.

    If we allow the hypocrisy of select adherents to any position undermine the argument in favor of or against any given position then we're just not thinking rationally.

  2. our president smokes two packs a day, therefore his policies on health are wrong.

  3. It is not an issue of hypocrisy so much as sleight of hand. It is as though the president were smoking two packs a day and trying to distract attention from that as the real problem for his health by saying lung cancer is really being caused by something else.

    The issue is that so-called "defenders of traditional marriage" aren't interested in "defending" it from anything other than its expansion to homosexuals. The Bible's teaching about divorce, the inequality of how people of different genders are treated in ancient Israel's laws, polygamy - none of that is being defended.

    And so the issue is not hypocrisy (although there is that too) but selectivity. If they were honest enough to say "I'm defending the bits of traditional marriage I like" I wouldn't object. But of course, those who support the right of homosexuals to marry can say the same thing.

  4. For me the issue here isn't about Limbaugh. Those living in glass houses and all. I'm mainly interested here, as a Christian, with our collective witness regarding the institution of marriage (our record is pretty abysmal) as it sits up against our rhetoric about wanting to "protect" the institution. The two don't jibe.

  5. I don't know if this is a case of hypocrisy. I don't think Limbaugh sees his marriages as a "moral failure." His Christian fans might see it that way, but I doubt he does. That is, he's not preaching against something (e.g., divorce) and then doing that very thing (e.g., getting a divorce). That would be hypocrisy, not practicing what he preaches. So I don't think hypocrisy is the relevant category here.

    The problem, as Greenwald sees it, is that Limbaugh doesn't believe in "traditional marriage" in the first place. That's fine. It's a free country. But when the issue of gay marriage comes up many of these people (who clearly don't believe in or practice "traditional marriage") rush in to "protect" this thing that, pragmatically speaking, they don't even think exists.

  6. Yes. More specifically, I think the government should get out of the "marriage" business and restrict its actions to granting and managing civil unions. This is one of those areas where I lean libertarian.

  7. Would you be in favor of a gay marriage being performed in the church you attend?

  8. In the four canonical Gospels, the Lord Jesus has nothing to say about homosexuals and homosexuality, but he has plenty to say about marriage, divorce, and remarriage. Persons who practice sexual promiscuity or serial monogamy have nothing to say to homosexuals about "marriage."

    In churches now divided over "same-sex marriage" or the ordination of homosexual clergy, the argument is about the legitimation of sodomy. There are those who are determined to have it, and those who are determined that they will not; between those camps it is difficult to find "common ground." The cause of the opponents of the legitimation of sodomy is not helped by the perversion of marriage among so many who enter into it as a casual liaison.

    May God have mercy.


  9. I agree. In my view, marriage is defined by churches, and churches should have freedom to exercise which ceremonies they will or will not perform, according to their convictions without condemnation. Government recognizes unions of any sort basically for tax purposes, not to sanctify anything. It's divorce attorneys who would profit most from marital definition expansions. A lesbian friend and neighbor of ours recently exercised the good sense to end an abusive, long-term relationship. I was glad for her that she didn't have to deal with divorce proceedings in addition to restraining orders and police protection. She was glad, too.

  10. Just want to clarify... If someone came to you and admitted to being homosexual would you counsel them to turn away from that lifestyle and that the bible teaches that that lifestyle is sinful?

  11. So I want to clarify...If an ACU student (or anyone for that matter) came to you and admitted to acting on homosexual feelings, would you counsel them to stop and that the bible teaches against homosexuality?

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