In an article in the Sunday Telegraph of 11 March, Matthew d’Ancona did his best to argue that black is white. ‘Backing Homosexual marriage is fundamentally conservative,’ he claimed, referring to David Cameron’s ongoing effort to push ‘Equality’ in marriage as in other areas of life in the best traditions of Cultural Marxism.
Marriage needs Updating Apparently
Marriage needs updating apparently and this is conservative because as G K Chesterton remarked, “All conservatism goes upon the assumption that if you leave a thing alone, you’ll leave a thing as it is. But you do not. If you leave a thing to itself, you are leaving it to wild and violent changes.”
Many will think that there could scarcely be a wilder change than redefining marriage from the coming together of a man and a woman for the procreation of children, something which has been an assumption, perhaps unthinkingly because it is so natural, for millennia and in every society imaginable, to include the coming together of two homosexuals for…Full Stop.
D’Ancona thinks that ‘In an age of impatience, lives based on tactics not strategy, and instant gratification, matrimony is in dire need of renewal and restoration’. Well, allowing homosexuals to be ‘married’ is a consequence of that very same malaise and is certain to do further damage to this highly important institution.
‘Equality’ of the Unequal leads to Social Disaster
Just as ‘equality’ in education has led to the dumbing down of primary and secondary schools and the devaluation of degrees; just as allowing abortion on the grounds of the health of a pregnant woman all those years ago has led to abortion on demand (equality of choice), so devaluing all human life; just as ‘assisted suicide’ has led to the same effect in the Netherlands, where doctors, not patients, have decided who should live and who should die; so granting Civic Partnership status to homosexual pairings has led to the demand for their ‘Marriage’.
A host of liberal measures have used the very same arguments that D’ Ancona uses and the results have been much the same. There has been a slippery slope to a disaster of cheapening and destroying in the interests of ‘Equality’ and ‘Choice’.
Why do Homosexuals want ‘Marriage?’ It’s Symbolic
Why, when as D’Ancona says, marriage is so much less popular now and many heterosexual couples do not bother with it, do homosexuals now want to marry? After all, they already get most of the benefits of marriage in the Civil Partnership arrangement, rights that are denied to other couples; brother and sister, for example, who live together. The answer of course is that it is symbolic. Symbolic of social acceptance, that is.
True Marriage is also Symbolic
And true marriage between a man and woman is also symbolic. It's not about social acceptance, at least not much these days. It is about a relationship which involves the coming together of the two in a partnership of difference which is greater than its constituent parts, greater by far than a homosexual partnership of sameness.
It is fundamentally for the getting and the raising of children with all the responsibility that implies, even when there are no children. It is a public avowal of commitment which says that a man (and it is mostly men who do) will not clear off and leave a wife and children to fend for themselves if the fancy takes him but will shoulder the burden of a father and a husband as a married man should. This commitment is far greater than any between two same-sex people ever could be.
‘Progress’ backwards into Paganism. There is nothing ‘modern’ about liberal sexual Mores
Cameron apparently thinks that advocating marriage for homosexuals is to be ‘modern’. Well it isn’t. As in many other ways, such as our diminishing respect for life, such attitudes to marriage and so forth aren’t ‘progressive’ but the reverse. They are just a return to those which one could find in pre-Christian paganism. There are references to same-sex ‘marriages’ between men in classical times in the literature. None of them though are favourable, showing that modern distaste is not unprecedented, at least among these writers.
The Emperor Nero’s three ‘Marriages’
Perhaps the most famous, because best documented, were the Emperor Nero’s who ‘married’ men on at least three different occasions. It is important when reading these accounts to remember that in Roman times such ‘marriages’ had only private, not legal significance. The law did not recognise arrangements between two men (or women). Hence one of the two took the role of the ‘bride’:-
1) Marriage to Sporus (Nero was the ‘husband’):
“[Nero] had a boy named Sporus castrated and tried to transform him into an actual woman; he married him in a regular wedding ceremony, with a dowry and a bridal veil, took him home in front of a great crowd, and treated him as his wife. A witty remark that someone made about this is still circulating: that human kind would have been well off, if his father Domitius had had the same kind of wife” (Suetonius, Nero 28-29).
2) Marriage to Doryphorus (Nero was the ‘bride’):
“…he invented a new kind of game (so to speak) in which, dressed in the skin of a wild animal, he was released from a cage and attacked the private parts of men and women who were bound to stakes and, when he had had enough of this savagery, he was finished off (as it were) by his freedman Doryphorus. This Doryphorus he took as his husband, just as Sporus had with him, and in doing so he imitated the cries and wailing of a virgin who is being raped” (Suetonius, Nero 28-29).
3) Marriage to Pythagoras (Nero was the‘bride’):
“A veil was placed over the emperor, the interpreters of the auspices were sent; a dowry, a wedding bed and marriage torches -- in the end, everything that is concealed by night even in the case of a woman was on display” (Tacitus, Ann. 15.37).
Nero was so hated that in the end he was forced to commit suicide.
Another Emperor, Heliogabalus (d. AD222), who referred to his charioteer Hierocles as his husband, was assassinated. He was said to dress as a woman and to prostitute himself even in the imperial palace.
It will be seen that we in this ‘liberal’ era while in opting for legal homosexual marriage are going further than the Romans, in terms of attitudes and behaviour are still lagging behind somewhat in the degradation of society. But rest assured, thanks to our ‘progressive’, ‘modernising’ conservative, Cameron and his ilk, we will get there in the end.