Marriage & Intrinsic Gender Differences

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I just finished reading a great column by Michael Medved on the issue of same-sex "marriage" and the intrinsic differences between men and women. Medved's piece is concise, well reasoned and articulates the principles I think many of us here at NOVA TownHall have been grappling with for a few months now… definitely worth a read. Here is a good seized excerpt:

If, then, society has achieved a new consensus -- near unanimity, in fact-- on the issue of the significance of gender differences, it ought to be possible to reach more widespread agreement on key elements of the same sex marriage debate. If men and women remain irreducibly different, it’s dishonest to suggest that marrying a man is the precise equivalent of marrying a woman. That doesn’t mean that a male-male relationship is evil, or decadent, or doomed, but it does mean that it’s hugely, inarguably different in its very essence from a male-female relationship --- or, for that matter, from a female-female relationship. Man-woman connections involve a fusion of opposites in a primal, elemental way that same sex associations can’t replicate. You may believe that this binding of the two genders is no better – or perhaps even less beneficial – than a connection between two people of the same sex, but no honest observer can maintain that homosexual and heterosexual relationships are indistinguishable or interchangeable. The endlessly repeated argument of gay union advocates that “we don’t want to change the institution of marriage, we want to expand the institution of marriage” is deceitful on its face. Of course the expansion of matrimony to include same sex couples involves a huge alteration in the long-standing definition of marital dynamics. It requires the abandonment of the timeless notion that bringing male-and-female together in intimacy achieves special power not just because of the reproductive potential but because of the combination of two vastly different genders. A love between people of the same gender may be beautiful, sentimental, even noble, but it’s not he same thing as the union of male-and female. The basis of the natural family has always arisen from the idea of a “Marriage of Opposites” – and that phrase serves as the title of the forthcoming book by my own better half, psychologist and author Dr. Diane Medved.

This recognition answers one more of the constantly invoked arguments of the activists who seek to redefine marriage. “Why is it a threat to your marriage,” they ask, “if the government gives similar recognition to the marriage of two guys or two women in gay relationships?”

The response ought to be obvious: the problem with gay marriage isn’t that it harms my marriage, or yours, but that it changes the institution of marriage – for my children, my grandchildren, and all future generations. It downplays the essential, irrevocable nature of gender differences – and serves to undermine the crucial importance of gender specific roles in all relationships. A gay couple might claim that they fill distinctive roles in their relationship – with one woman working hard to support the family, for instance, while the other cooks and decorates and nourishes the kids. But choosing complementary roles for the sake of convenience or preference isn’t the same as recognizing that these contrasting approaches arise from your very essence as a man or a woman. There’s something arbitrary, synthetic and, indeed, temporary about a same sex couple attempting to imitate a heterosexual marriage by fulfilling distinct responsibilities in the relationship.

If you, like many of us here and across Virginia, agree with Medved’s above points and believe that marriage is the union of one-man and one-woman and no child should be willfully denied a mother or a father… then get out there and support the Marriage Amendment! You can sign-up to do so here.

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5 Comments

"A gay couple might claim that they fill distinctive roles in their relationship – with one woman working hard to support the family, for instance, while the other cooks and decorates and nourishes the kids. But choosing complementary roles for the sake of convenience or preference isn’t the same as recognizing that these contrasting approaches arise from your very essence as a man or a woman. There’s something arbitrary, synthetic and, indeed, temporary about a same sex couple attempting to imitate a heterosexual marriage by fulfilling distinct responsibilities in the relationship."

And how many heterosexual marriages now fulfill your incredibly narrow and frankly, sepia-tinted view of marriage? What utter nonsense.

David said:

A very interesting essay.

For another view, readers may want to read mine at Bacon's Rebellion:
http://www.baconsrebellion.com/Issues06/07-24/Weintraub.php

Stay Puft Marshmallow Man said:

and wait a second! how come the couple in the picture already have two kids on their wedding day? How is that even possible?

Sophrosyne said:

Haha- Touché Mr. Marshmallow Man. I am thinking flower girl/ring bearer but it is open for interpretation.

Radiowilling said:

Are folks familiar with the biological argument involved with intersex/hermaphrodites? One argument I have heard is, "since a percentage of humans are born with male and female reproductive parts or have a chemical combo of both male/female, then wouldn't that person always be sinning when having sex with his/her spouse? Think about it, if doctors choose to "make" this hermaphrodite into, say a woman, then when that woman marries a man, half of her/him is committing the sin of homosexuality.

Even though doctors can surgically change the biological condition of a person, is that person no less the two-sexes that he/she was born to be by God?"

One can say that being intersex is an "imperfection" of living in such a "sinful" world but hermaphrodites have existed throughout all of time and were once respected. Now we let doctors and parents determine the "sex" of a child. how is that leaving our nature in God's hands? What is we allowed hermaphrodites, who are also God's people, to be who they were born to be? Why have we allowed humans who are imperfect to make these decisions?

AND with this argument, how does that change the outlook of the discussion of homosexuality?

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