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These Doctors are Nuts

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Representatives of the American Psychiatric Association, the nation's top psychiatric group, approved a statement on May 22, 2005, urging legal recognition of gay marriage. These guys are nuts. Tom Minogue, who is on the medical faculty of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a practicing psychiatrist and an APA member, sees some “disturbing trends” in psychiatry. Everything is now a “disorder.” “Whatever happened to evil and wrongdoing in the world?,” he asks. He also objects to organizations like the APA using “its influence and prestige to move from [an] appropriate ethical agenda to a very controversial social one” like this year’s meeting to approve homosexual marriage.[1] Psychiatry has no moral base. The medical profession, like the courts, has allowed so-called evolving moral standards to shape their policies. The APA has allowed the patients to redefine their policies. Who even needs a psychiatrist if no one is really “sick”? The behavior practiced by homosexuals would fail any standard test given to evaluate rational behavior, but since there is no longer a standard, homosexuals are deemed “normal.”

The following is a “patient” redefining his “illness.” Stephen Hendricks, who serves on Montana's homosexual-rights advocacy group, offers up typical objections and attempts to answer them.[2] In this case, the psychiatrist is on the couch. My rebuttal follows each rebuttal made by Hendricks.

Claim 1: "Marriage has always been the way it is; you can't change it just to fit the times."

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "Gay marriage is perfectly in keeping with the evolving nature of the institution. Once blacks couldn't marry whites, Jews couldn't marry Christians and wives were property of husbands. Such features changed as notions of equality did."

Rebuttal by DeMar: Notice that Hendricks assumes the validity of marriage. Why is marriage legitimate in the first place? He never says. He must assume the biblical origin of marriage in order to reject it. He's like the atheist who denies God and then uses the attributes of the divine creation of man—reason, logic, justice—in an effort to refute God's existence. But you can't account for reason, logic, or justice unless you first assume the existence of God. In a similar way, Hendricks borrows the biblical definition of marriage to deny the biblical definition of marriage. Given that the science of the day is evolutionary, marriage is nothing more than a lingering religious holdover of a pre-scientific worldview. What Hendricks should be advocating is a National Freedom From Marriage Day. Marriage should be abolished for everyone! Animals don't marry; they only mate. So why should the human animal be bound by such outdated religious restraints? If you're going to use the word "marriage," it's necessary that you account for its origin. Hendricks doesn't.

Hendricks then moves on by discussing the "evolving nature of the institution." Of course, if evolution is true, then he's right. Marriage can be anything we want it to be. But if we begin with the biblical origin of marriage, then there's nothing evolutionary about it: "For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh" (Gen. 2:24). In biblical terms, marriage has always been between one man and one woman. There's nothing in the Bible that says blacks can't marry whites. Marriage prohibitions were based on ethics (morals) not ethnics (race). Jews were warned not to marry unbelievers for ethical not racial reasons: "Shall we again break Thy commandments and intermarry with the peoples who commit these abominations?" (Ezra 9:14). Paul states it like this:

Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? (2 Cor. 6:14–15).

There are no biblical laws that state it's a crime for Christians and Jews to marry. If such laws exist, it's only because man has created them. In some cultures, wives are considered property, but not in the Bible where the definition of marriage is found. If, as Hendricks says, marriage is an evolving institution, then what would make any of these prohibitions wrong? If the State can change marriage laws to include homosexuals, then it can also create laws to exclude others.

Claim 2: "Homosexuality is immoral; the Bible condemns it."

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "In the Bible, the book of Leviticus does say gays should be killed. But the Bible would also have us kill women who have premarital sex and men who masturbate, and it forbids tattoos, working on Sunday, eating shrimp and playing with pigskin (in other words, football). With good reason, America is a democracy not a theocracy."

Rebuttal by DeMar: This is a loaded one. I'll start from the bottom and work my way up. America is a republic not a democracy. If America were a democracy, then if 50+% of the people wanted to prohibit homosexual marriage, then homosexuals would have to live with the democratic consensus. Of course, this would be true for anything. Footballs are not made from pigskin, and even if they were, only religious observant Jews might be prohibited from handling the ball. There are no civil sanctions against handling pigs or their skin. The prohibition against eating shrimp is also religious and does not carry civil sanctions. The Bible does prohibit work on the Sabbath and the Constitution acknowledges this (Article I, section 7), but I don't see how this is an argument against the Bible since the Bible also prohibits murder, rape, incest, bestiality, kidnapping, theft, perjury, and other acts that remain on our law books. Would homosexuals call for these laws to be rescinded in order to normalize sodomy? Tattooing the body is prohibited, but again, there are no civil sanctions against it (Lev. 19:28). There is no death penalty for masturbation. Onan was struck down by God because of defiance (Gen. 38:8–9). The issue of premarital sex is more complicated. It's more accurate to say that a betrothed person who engages in premarital sex could be executed if found guilty in a court of law. Joseph did not intend to claim this right (Matt. 1:19). By this law, the Bible certainly means that adultery is a serious act that has larger social ramifications. Contrary to what Hendricks claims, the Bible does not say "gays should be killed." Public acts of sodomy are condemned with civil sanctions (Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Rom. 1:18-32). The main purpose of these laws is to keep homosexuality closeted. Obviously, homosexuals object to these civil sanctions, but it's a great leap in logic to move from "the Bible condemns homosexuality in the harshest terms" to "homosexuals should be allowed to marry."

Claim 3: "Gay Marriage doesn't lead to children, the purpose of marriage."

Rebuttal by Hendricks:"Wrong on both counts. States give marriage licenses to straight couples who don't or can't procreate. And like many straight couples, gays raise children thanks to adoption or sperm donors."

Rebuttal by DeMar: The State does not know whether a heterosexual couple can or can't procreate. The State does know that homosexuals who engage in same-sex sex will never be able to procreate. Hendricks is equivocating in the way he is uses "lead to children." It's a biological fact that homosexual sex will never lead to children. Given what we know about male and female anatomy, the vast majority of heterosexual couples will be able to conceive and have children. Men and women are anatomically suited to procreate. They were made that way by God. The fact that homosexuals have to use extraordinary means in every case to make children a part of their manufactured family is good evidence that there is something inherently wrong with homosexual marriages. If a child keeps hammering a square peg into a round hole after he's been shown that the round peg goes into the round hole, we must assume that his intellectual abilities are somewhat diminished. Does it ever register with homosexuals that maybe God is telling them something when they get life-threatening diseases because of their sexual practices and can have no children no matter how hard they try? Like Dr. Frankenstein, homosexuals take God's design of marriage and manufacture an artificial monster from its parts.

Claim 4: "If gays marry, next people will want to marry horses or children."

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "The equine argument is a Montana favorite, as it was for foes of interracial marriage. But marriage gay or straight, is a contract between two consenting adults. Nobody proposes changing this."

Rebuttal by DeMar: No one right now proposes marrying horses or children like no one twenty years ago thought there would be any consideration of homosexual marriages today. Homosexual groups have been trying to lower the age of consent. If your son or daughter can marry at the age of fifteen or sixteen, then what will stop homosexual marriages of the same age? The definition of consenting adult can change. "Consenting adult" would also include the marriage of sister and brother, mother and daughter, father and daughter, father and son, and any other combination you don't want to think about (1 Cor. 5:1).

If homosexual marriage is based on the evolving nature of the institution and the free-will consent of adults, then what arguments will be used against bigamy and polygamy? It was little more than a hundred years ago that polygamy was dealt with by the Supreme Court in Davis v. Beason (1890). Notice that marriage is given a biblical definition by the court:

Bigamy and polygamy are crimes by the laws of all civilized and Christian countries. They are crimes by the laws of the United States, and they are crimes by the laws of Idaho. They tend to destroy the purity of the marriage relation, to disturb the peace of families, to degrade woman, and to debase man. Few crimes are more pernicious to the best interests of society, and receive more general or more deserved punishment. To extend exemption from punishment for such crimes would be to shock the moral judgment of the community. To call their . . . advocacy a tenet of religion is to offend the common sense of mankind. If they are crimes, then to teach, advise, and counsel their practice is to aid in their commission, and such teaching and counseling are themselves criminal, and proper subjects of punishment, as aiding and abetting crime are in all other cases.

Once homosexual marriages are sanctioned by law, anything goes. Yes, even the marriage of horses (most likely dogs) and children will not seem out of the realm of possibilities.

Claim 5: "Gay sex is disgusting."

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "So are, to many people, some ‘straight’ sex acts. It's not the state's job to intrude in the bedrooms of consenting adults."

Rebuttal by DeMar: Yes, homosexual sex is disgusting and dangerous. AIDS is the disease of homosexuals. The statistics are there for all to see. The fact that some heterosexuals might engage in similar practices does not make them right. Furthermore, no one I know is proposing that the bedroom should be open for police to inspect, for heterosexuals or homosexuals. If homosexuals practiced their perversion behind closed doors, few people would object. God will ultimately judge them. Homosexuals, however, aren't content with only having the bedroom. They have taken their perversion into the classrooms, teaching that such practices are normal. There is nothing normal about what homosexuals do.

Claim 6: "You can't force a church to marry gays."

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "True, but irrelevant. Gays are asking for state-issued licenses. Religions will remain as free to ban gay weddings as they are to ban women ministers."

Rebuttal by DeMar: Maybe right now. The way "hate crime" legislation is moving, churches may find it difficult in the near future to say anything critical of homosexuality in general. In a December 11, 2002 decision, a judge in Saskatchewan, Canada, ruled that a man who placed Bible verses about homosexuality in a newspaper ad was guilty of inciting hatred. What will happen when a minister refuses to marry homosexuals who have joined the church in an attempt to test the limits of hate crime legislation? Could a church lose its tax-exempt status? Could litigation costs bankrupt a small congregation and set a legal precedent for larger churches? If you want to know what the future will be like if homosexuals get their way, then read When the Wicked Seize a City by Chuck and Donna McIlhenny. The church's baptism of fire began when their church was sued by their church organist who had been fired after it was discovered that he was a practicing homosexual. As this book details, the homosexual movement is about intimidation.

Claim 7: "Why do gays need to marry anyway?"

Rebuttal by Hendricks: "Many basic rights and protections are conferred by marriage, like the rights to visit a hospitalized partner, receive family health benefits and inherit a partner's property."

Rebuttal by DeMar: Property can be passed on to anyone. You don't have to be married to inherit. In fact, you don't have to be a human being to inherit. Foundations, charities, and schools receive millions of dollars every year through inheritance clauses in wills. Even pets can inherit. Fundamentally, marriage is not about certain economic rights and protections. Redefining the family and the nature of marriage for economic and personal reasons is off the mark and falls outside the jurisdiction of the State.

Homosexual advocates like Hendricks and the American Psychiatric Association are counting on the majority of Americans not being able to think clearly on this topic. The fact that Hendricks is willing to have his own poorly reasoned arguments published only goes to show how gullible and unthinking he considers most Americans to be on this topic. And maybe they are. Only time and the law will tell.

Endnotes:

[1] Tom Minogue, “In effect, psychiatrists lying down on the job,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (May 24, 2005), A15.
[2] Stephen Hendricks, “In Support of Gay Marriage” (February 12, 2003),  www.progressive.org/mediaproject03/mphf503.html

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