Continuing with non-Scriptural, natural law arguments against homosexual marriage.
3. It will drive a deeper wedge between man and woman.
The unhappy parting of man and woman that I have described in argument 2 is already a common feature of our day. In my own lifetime I have witnessed the last petering out of a tradition of song and poetry that had lasted eight hundred years, from the troubadours of Provence to its last and decadent efflorescence among the rockers of the 1960’s. I am speaking about poetry and song of love. What has happened to it? Men no longer celebrate the beauty of women they admire from afar, whose hand they aspire to hold; more to the point, men are no longer inspired by women, as Dante was by his Beatrice, and Petrarch by his Laura. The reasons are distressing. It takes a good man to admire a woman, and a good woman to be admired by a man. But does a good man snarl at woman, calling her names that I do not care to repeat here, or, even if he is too polite to use the words, treating her as such? Does a good woman look down with ignorant contempt upon her brothers?
Perhaps the reader will ask what homosexuality has to do with this problem. It is simple: the acceptance of homosexuality is predicated upon the tacit assumption that male and female are not made for one another. It defines male apart from female, female apart from male; or it leaves those terms free-floating, without definition. Young men and young women already are growing up without understanding what they are to be for one another. Again, the results are predictable. Fewer young people marry. When they do marry, their emphasis on personal fulfillment, rather than on interpersonal and complementary gifts, bodes ill for the survival of the marriage; for a spouse will destroy many a foolish daydream of youth. They will have fewer children. In no western country does the birth rate now assure even a replacement of one generation by the next; in many countries, the birth rate is so low as to constitute a slow and numb despair, a resignation to cultural suicide. If this situation is to be reversed, and the unarguable mathematics shows that countries like Italy and Japan are rapidly nearing a point of irreversible decline, then men and women must be brought together again. How they can be brought together, when we offer them the chance, though delusory, to “fulfill” themselves sexually apart from one another, or when we implicitly affirm that sex is simply a matter of individual preferences, is hard for me to fathom.
4. It makes a mockery of chastity.
Every faculty of man has its proper use. If I walk every day, I will develop strong legs for standing and walking and bracing myself. That is what legs are for. Chastity is the virtue of using one’s sexual desires properly. Since the act that is biologically designed to produce babies has the predictable propensity to, well, produce babies, and since the desire to perform that act is one of man’s strongest and most violent drives, all cultures have resorted to means of curbing that desire or channeling it towards healthy ends. Before the advent of the modern welfare state, most peoples laid heavy blame on those who brought children into the world when they were unfit to care for them. Traditions regarding these matters vary from culture to culture, but several things remain notably constant. If you indulge yourself in the marital act and produce a baby out of wedlock, you are in big trouble. In general, that act is reserved for marriage, or for something closely associated with it (as, for instance, is the tradition among some peoples, where a man is duty-bound to sleep with his brother’s childless widow, that his brother’s seed may endure).
Chastity has all kinds of practical considerations going for it. If you are chaste, you stand a much lower chance of being beaten or murdered by someone driven witless by jealousy; you will probably not contract certain filthy and debilitating, even deadly, diseases, and if your spouse is chaste, you certainly will not contract them; your marriage begins in better shape, as you will not be spoiled or confused by memories of previous affairs, many of them painful; you will not help destroy a family with your looseness, your own family or someone else’s. The psychological considerations are greater still. What insanity of ours, that we encourage boys and girls to set forth on a long series of sexual train wrecks, with all their concomitant misunderstandings, abuses, and treacheries, as preparation for lifelong marriage! It is a miracle almost if they do not reach their twenties as thoroughly cynical about themselves and the opposite sex as is the most embittered divorcee. How can love survive the bath in acid?
But how can we recommend chastity to the young, when we enshrine the principal that what they do with their genitals is strictly their own business, and that such activity is all for personal fulfillment? What value can sexual restraint possibly have, except as some cold, calculating means towards keeping one’s resume clean along the road to wealth and power? In particular, how can we even talk about chastity when we accept homosexuality? For a homosexual defines himself or herself by the action. A teenager calls himself homosexual because he has performed homosexual acts. It is utterly incoherent to suppose that we can ever recommend to “straight” teenagers a chastity that must be violated by the homosexual in order for him to define himself as such. What homosexual could possibly “wait until marriage,” even if such “marriages” were made legal? What reason would there be for him to do so? In short, if homosexual acts are accepted, there remains no reason at all to condemn or even frown upon premarital sex.
That point illustrates what I have often argued, namely that sex can never be merely a matter of satisfying an individual’s desires. We are all in the same cultural boat. What you compel me to condone in one case will cause me also to condone other things, necessarily. We are not islands unto ourselves.