Fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly – that’s nature’s way

“No celebration for this lesbian”, Lauren Taylor tells us in yesterday’sWashington Post. She makes some good points in her response to President Obama’s jump off the fence earlier this week – but she still misses the truth at the heart of this debate.  Like her we all “love the idea of commitment, of getting community and family support for a relationship, and of the accountability to that community and family.” The institution of marriage as we have known it for millennia is about far more than that. Essentially the things it is about have to do with the very special relationship which a man and a woman can share, a relationship which can never be equated with that between two men or two women. In other words, conjugality.

We will all agree with her that “anyone who wants to should have a ceremony and make a commitment and throw a big party. But that shouldn’t affect whether they then get health insurance, or get to take time off to take a sick person to the doctor, or are able to sign a permission form for a field trip.”

She tells us that  she is “not fighting for access to marriage, and I wish that wasn’t where the gay rights movement was putting most of its effort and resources. (Violence, housing, employment, education, anyone?) But (with apologies to Groucho Marx), if someone is trying to keep me out of this club, I want in. How dare anyone say that I don’t deserve access to marriage and all it brings? How dare they say I, and my relationships, aren’t good enough?”

Those fighting for the very existence of the institution of marriage are not telling her that her relationships are not good enough. They are just telling her that they are not the kind of relationships which fit the definition of marriage. Try this analogy: If you want to swim you need water to swim in. Mountain air is very refreshing and beautiful but it won’t support you swimming. Pretend you are swimming in it and you will just look silly. If you are a man and want to marry you need a woman to marry, and vice versa. Or as Julie sings in Jerome Kern’s Showboat, “Fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly, I gotta love one man till I die, Can’t help loin’ dat man of mine.” The sea is for fish, the air is for birds and marriage is for men and women – sorry, that’s Mother Nature’s way.

(Posted earlier to MercatorNet’s Conjugality blog)

Are Obama and Cameron playing with electoral fire?

As was widely anticipated, President Obama’s “evolution” on the marriage question has now reached its final resting place in the gay lobby camp. But the political consequences are not so clear and the electoral rout which the other convert to the redefinition of marriage cause, Britain’s David Cameron, experienced at the polls last week might be worrying him. But really, given his imprisonment – not necessarily an unwilling confinement – by the ultra liberal caucus, he had little choice as to which side of the fence he was ultimately going to choose.

Political observers in Britain are already speculating that the coalition government there, following the disastrous showing in last week’s nation-wide local elections, rewrote the content of yesterday’s Queen’s Speech, the speech written by the Prime Minister but read by the Queen to Parliament and outlining the forthcoming legislative plans. “Gay marriage” was not mentioned in the speech…. Read more on the Conjugality blog.