, , ,

by Mary Griggs

rainbow scalesWe are fighting for more than marriage. We are fighting for our right to love.

Marriage equality opponents would condemn us to live without it. Denying us marriage is just the latest sortie from people who want to forbid people of the same sex the most fundamental of human rights.

And they intend to continue their fight beyond any Supreme Court ruling. Gary Glenn of the American Family Association called on Christians and the governors of the states which have outlawed gay marriage to ignore any ruling that might strike down those laws.

They speak of sin and temptation but, in their hearts, they believe that being lesbian, gay or bisexual means that you aren’t entitled to give or receive love.

Just listen to the words of our opponents.

Russell D. Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, said in an interview with the Baptist Press news service, “The Christian church has always maintained that sexual expression is directed only toward the one-flesh union of male and female in marriage. Anything else is to be turned away from, regardless of how difficult that is.”

The Catholic bishops couldn’t be more plain in their notes on Human Sexuality #55 (and in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, #2357-8):

“(W)e believe that it is only within a heterosexual marital relationship that genital sexual activity is morally acceptable. Only within marriage does sexual intercourse fully symbolize the Creator’s dual design, as an act of covenant love, with the potential of co-creating new human life. Therefore, homosexual genital activity is considered immoral.

Therefore, the Church calls all homosexual persons, like their single heterosexual counterparts, to be chaste, that is, sexually appropriate for their uncommitted, unmarried state in life. Various Church documents acknowledge that this may be a difficult challenge, even a lifelong cross to carry. This is particularly true since heterosexual couples may anticipate marriage-to-come, while for gay or lesbian couples such a future sacramental union is not available.”

When they aren’t calling for perpetual celibacy our opponents are advocating for us to choose loveless unions, regardless of the pain that may cause our partner.

For example, Michelle Bachman and Jason Lewis are just two of the many who argue that bans on same-sex marriage don’t discriminate against gays or lesbians because we have an equal right to marry someone of the opposite sex. Michelle was talking to high school students when she famously said, “We all have the same civil rights…They (same-sex couples) can get married but they abide by the same law as everyone else. They can marry a man if they’re a woman. Or they can marry a woman if they’re a man.”

They fear a slippery slope that Justice Scalia articulated in his dissent on Lawrence v Texas:

Today’s opinion dismantles the structure of constitutional law that has permitted a distinction to be made between heterosexual and homosexual unions, insofar as formal recognition in marriage is concerned,” Scalia wrote. “If moral disapprobation of homosexual conduct is ‘no legitimate state interest’ for purposes of proscribing that conduct … what justification could there possibly be for denying the benefits of marriage to homosexual couples exercising ‘(t)he liberty protected by the Constitution’?

So true – marriage equality is inevitable to anyone with eyes to see and hearts that feel. It might not come today but it is coming.

Marriage equality opponents, blinded by planks in their eyes and with their hearts of stone, demand for us to spend our lives cut off from love or any physically intimate relationships.

We are never to know the joy of minds and bodies connecting. Never to feel the empowerment that comes from sharing our lives with our love or participating in the fulfillment of our essential nature.

These so-called Christians completely disregard their faith’s teachings about love. Those red letter words in the New Testatment should take precedence over the law – Jesus said it himself:

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:36-40, Mark 12:28-31)

Love – it is worth fighting for!