Family Values Still Threaten GOP


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By Edward Hudgins

May 30, 2014 — In another skirmish in the GOP’s civil war, Ken Blackwell recently linked mass killings with same-sex unions. This is why, in spite of the prospects for a Republican takeover of the Senate in 2014, the party is still in a death spiral.

Blackwell is a prominent Republican: a former Ohio secretary of state and now a senior fellow at the Family Research Council. On May 27, reacting to the recent shootings in Isla Vista, California by a young mentally unbalanced nut, Blackwell placed part of the blame for the killings on “the crumbling of the moral foundation of the country” and on “the attack on natural marriage and the family.” He made the even more outrageous assertion that “Throughout history, in order for totalitarianism, Marxism or a welfare state to occur two things have to happen—the marginalization of the church and the destruction of the family.”

First, Blackwell’s history is bad. Churches and religions have as often backed and even spearheaded political repression as opposed it. And the preservation of family and tradition has often been used as an excuse for repression.

Second, the purpose of government is to protect the lives, liberty, and property of individuals, not to dictate to them how they should live their lives. People should be free to enjoy their liberty and use their property, whether or not Blackwell or anyone else approves of their choices. If two gay individuals want to enter into the particular contractual relationship referred to as “marriage,” this does not limit the freedom of anybody else and is not anyone else’s political business.

Third, Blackwell is correct that the moral foundation of the country is crumbing. But the problem is not same-sex marriage or the erosion of the family as such. Rather, it is the erosion of individualism. Individualism is the understanding that individuals should pursue their own happiness and flourishing, guided by their reason, to produce the means of their own survival, prosperity, and spiritual well-being, dealing with their fellows based on mutual consent. This country’s liberty, which is rooted in this philosophy, has allowed millions of realize the “American Dream”—individual flourishing. This country’s individualist culture has nurtured and encouraged the entrepreneurship that has made America the richest country in the world. But the welfare state, which Blackwell and most social conservatives denounce, has had a major role in destroying this philosophy, the morality of personal responsibility, and individual liberty.

Blackwell’s Christian traditionalism echoes too many social conservatives who, by giving priority to a social agenda that limits liberty, actually empower the welfare statists whom they denounce. For example, these intolerant polemics distract the political debate from the clash between individualism and collectivism, between producers and expropriators, between liberty-lovers and control freaks. They drive away from the Republican Party young people who are socially liberal, accepting of same-sex unions, and who want nothing to do with what they see as a bigoted GOP.

The more social conservatives push their liberty-limiting conception of “family values” as a political priority, the more they will not only see their own agenda fail but, in the process, will cripple the pro-freedom faction within the GOP, leaving the country open for an ever-more expansive, repressive, and family-destroying welfare state.
---
Hudgins is director of advocacy and a senior scholar at The Atlas Society.

For further information:

Edward Hudgins, The Republican Party’s Civil War: Will Freedom Win? February 2014.

Edward Hudgins, “Questions for Conservatives about Gay Marriage and Sock Drawers,” July1, 2011.

William R Thomas, “Myth: Ayn Rand was a Conservative,” 2012.

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Pleasant, politically correct libertarian wet dream of ejecting conservative Christians from the Republican Party, with individualism and "contractual relationships" for all -- because that's what young social liberals want?

Doesn't make a hoot of sense. Young social liberals voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama. Nor is it the purpose of government to defend queers or individual consent as a first principle. Enormous harm has been forced on our society by gay judges who overturned state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Sodomites quashed the Constitutional guarantee of a republican form of government in which the people of each state make civil law by elected representatives and majority-rule ballot initiatives.

The libertarian agenda never stood a chance of winning a majority. It is vain to think that conservative Christians are going to walk away and surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists. Moreover, Ron Paul had no real chance of winning nomination, despite the fact that Dr. Paul was widely admired for being strongly pro-life and "an unshakable foe" of abortion.

If it is now the opinion of my fellow men that the public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals, then the public good be damned, and I stand with conservative Christians in defense of child welfare. Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex.

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Pleasant, politically correct libertarian wet dream of ejecting conservative Christians from the Republican Party, with individualism and "contractual relationships" for all -- because that's what young social liberals want?

Doesn't make a hoot of sense. Young social liberals voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama. Nor is it the purpose of government to defend queers or individual consent as a first principle. Enormous harm has been forced on our society by gay judges who overturned state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Sodomites quashed the Constitutional guarantee of a republican form of government in which the people of each state make civil law by elected representatives and majority-rule ballot initiatives.

The libertarian agenda never stood a chance of winning a majority. It is vain to think that conservative Christians are going to walk away and surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists. Moreover, Ron Paul had no real chance of winning nomination, despite the fact that Dr. Paul was widely admired for being strongly pro-life and "an unshakable foe" of abortion.

If it is now the opinion of my fellow men that the public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals, then the public good be damned, and I stand with conservative Christians in defense of child welfare. Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex.

Wolf, I see you are still coming out from your anasthesia.

I'm going to have to read your book now to see how you've managed to reconcile your cultural with intellectual (logical) values. The former obviously has deep roots. The latter? I dunno.

You ain't doing it here.

--Brant

so far

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There are official Christian leaders (typically on the wrong side of an issue, including being for open immigration), and then there are rank and file Protestant Christians. Generally the latter are more pro-freedom than the rest of the population.

(I don’t know of any statistical study done on [rank and file] Protestant Christian opinion of open immigration, but if they’re consistent with wanting freedom they’re against it.)

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Pleasant, politically correct libertarian wet dream of ejecting conservative Christians from the Republican Party, with individualism and "contractual relationships" for all -- because that's what young social liberals want?

Doesn't make a hoot of sense. Young social liberals voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama. Nor is it the purpose of government to defend queers or individual consent as a first principle. Enormous harm has been forced on our society by gay judges who overturned state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Sodomites quashed the Constitutional guarantee of a republican form of government in which the people of each state make civil law by elected representatives and majority-rule ballot initiatives.

The libertarian agenda never stood a chance of winning a majority. It is vain to think that conservative Christians are going to walk away and surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists. Moreover, Ron Paul had no real chance of winning nomination, despite the fact that Dr. Paul was widely admired for being strongly pro-life and "an unshakable foe" of abortion.

If it is now the opinion of my fellow men that the public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals, then the public good be damned, and I stand with conservative Christians in defense of child welfare. Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex.

Wolf, I see you are still coming out from your anasthesia.

I'm going to have to read your book now to see how you've managed to reconcile your cultural with intellectual (logical) values. The former obviously has deep roots. The latter? I dunno.

You ain't doing it here.

--Brant

so far

Brant,

It would be helpful to me if you could identify which proposition(s) in particular you found illogical. Thanks.

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These days when I think about the nature of government, I have concluded that it emerged from family. People tend to transpose the structures they learn from their family as they grow up to how they view government.

This is a broad topic, one that merits a lot of discussion among the individualism folks (like me, too :) ). We need a good, long, solid, passionate debate--acrimonious if necessary--on what family values are and should be, not simply a rejection of family values for a principle.

We are all born into families (and I consider an orphanage a type of family). We have no choice about that. Simply ignoring family, or downplaying it is the Achilles Heel of libertarianism and Objectivism. The reason?

Everybody has a family. And most people find a hell of a lot of love in their families. Some get the booby prize in life, but look at social media like Facebook and observe how people deal with their families, look at the photographs.

Look at entertainment. The biggest selling stories (in all the different kinds of media) center around the family. People don't ignore family life. They buy it! What do freedom promoters think they are going to resonate with when it's time to vote? Hellooooo...

Christianity does not have a monopoly on defining family values. There are all kinds of ways to define them, all kinds of different structures to study. But Christianity does have a structure and value system that works well (from a family lens) and is attractive to a hell of a lot of people.

Why do people like Glenn Beck resonate so strongly with the public--just look at his public!--and spread libertarian ideas more effectively than the formal Objectivist and libertarian organizations? Maybe because he doesn't appeal just to one stage of a person's life, but the entire family instead? And because he says family is good? Think about it.

It's a great idea to study how and why this works. I hold it is entirely possible to hold strong family values and individualism values at the same time. Not only is that possible, I believe this is what people (except power mongers) truly seek in a world-view irrespective of religion or ideology.

This is a topic I intend to expand on in the future.

Michael

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Pleasant, politically correct libertarian wet dream of ejecting conservative Christians from the Republican Party, with individualism and "contractual relationships" for all -- because that's what young social liberals want?

Doesn't make a hoot of sense. Young social liberals voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama. Nor is it the purpose of government to defend queers or individual consent as a first principle. Enormous harm has been forced on our society by gay judges who overturned state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Sodomites quashed the Constitutional guarantee of a republican form of government in which the people of each state make civil law by elected representatives and majority-rule ballot initiatives.

The libertarian agenda never stood a chance of winning a majority. It is vain to think that conservative Christians are going to walk away and surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists. Moreover, Ron Paul had no real chance of winning nomination, despite the fact that Dr. Paul was widely admired for being strongly pro-life and "an unshakable foe" of abortion.

If it is now the opinion of my fellow men that the public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals, then the public good be damned, and I stand with conservative Christians in defense of child welfare. Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex.

Wolf, I see you are still coming out from your anasthesia.

I'm going to have to read your book now to see how you've managed to reconcile your cultural with intellectual (logical) values. The former obviously has deep roots. The latter? I dunno.

You ain't doing it here.

--Brant

so far

Brant,

It would be helpful to me if you could identify which proposition(s) in particular you found illogical. Thanks.

I'll have to beg off a while until I do more reading, but you seem to be socially conservative and politically libertarian. If so it's a new combination for me except for hints in Ayn Rand (homosexuality is "disgusting," we need a "just war" with the Soviet Union, we-can-[and-will]-have-an-affair-Nathaniel-but-only-us-four-are-to-know-about-it [a face-saving coverup]).

--Brant

BUT: why should the state have anything at all to do with marriage (and, by extension, the legal creation and maintenance of corporations)?

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  1. Nor is it the purpose of government to defend queers or individual consent as a first principle.
  2. Enormous harm has been forced on our society by gay judges who overturned state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.
  3. Sodomites quashed the Constitutional guarantee of a republican form of government in which the people of each state make civil law by elected representatives and majority-rule ballot initiatives.
  4. It is vain to think that conservative Christians are going to walk away and surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists.
  5. If it is now the opinion of my fellow men that the public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals, then the public good be damned, and I stand with conservative Christians in defense of child welfare.
  6. Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex.

Wolf is opposed to so-called marriage equality, on several grounds. First because -- he says -- it's not government's purpose to "defend queers" (queers here stands for gay males and lesbians, I assume). I don't know what he means by 'individual consent as a first principle.'

It's clearly a function of Wolf's beliefs about government, a just state, personal freedom and so on -- that he is opposed to 'queer marriage' from the get-go. But he also sees practical, cultural, and moral issues.

One of the moral/practical/cultural issues concerns the harm already done by queer marriage, in Wolf's view. He calls it "enormous harm ... forced on our (USA) society." It would be helpful for my understanding to have the harm identified and further quantified. The harm is likely to be seen in some states and not in others -- unlike in Canada/Spain/Netherlands and so on, where marriage laws function at the national level (I expect Wolf can tabulate some harm from the effect of the federal Defence of Marriage Act being struck down, requiring the federal government to respect same-sex marriages).

About 'gay judges' who enforced this harm, it's unclear if this is but rhetorical salting. At least in Canada, that would mean all the Supreme Court judges were gay. With regard to DOMA, the majority judges would be gay.

This doesn't make sense to me.

'Sodomites' is a choice old word, with choice connotations that extend from 'queer.' I don't see the argument here, only the conclusion. The USA has had democratic expression, through means of balloted constitutional amendments (or legislation like DOMA) curbed or overturned by the queers (gay judges, sodomites). Some states have had their republican structures damaged, their abilities to legislate reduced.

As for Ed Hudgins' assertions that Republicans are hobbled by their ties with evangelical Christianity -- and the moral positions of its constituents -- Wolf assures that the only young folks the Republicans might lose on the queer marriage issue are already or likely to be Democrats (or 'social liberals').

This is not so clearcut; according to historical polling, the numbers of those in support of gay marriage equality (queers) grows even within the Republican and Independent contingents. Several historical trends can be seen in the polls represented at the Wikipedia page: Public opinion of same-sex marriage in the United States. My takehome from demographics is the Ed Hudgins is right: young people increasingly favour legalizing gay marriage, across the parties. Wolf may be right that the young evangelical Republicans hold fast ... but this group does not comprise a majority of the young.

I think that there is evidence of a social change, a change in opinion, that gives strength to Ed's argument over the coming years and electoral seasons. If the Republicans champion the most 'rejectionist' candidates, if they consistently work to serve the 'rejectionists' in electoral propaganda and platform, they will tend to lose the votes of the young.

Some opinion researchers have spoken of a tipping point, that opinion can move quickly to a large majority in favour of gay marriage. For example, from the same Wiki article:

[O]ver time, same-sex marriage will continue to gain support simply due to the increasing number of more supportive youth and the decrease of less supportive seniors. Lax and Phillips also suggest a "tipping point" effect at which point support for same-sex marriage begins to grow increasingly quickly once a certain level of support is reached by the population. This would explain why support for gay rights has increased more quickly among all age groups in states that were initially the most supportive of gay rights than in states with low initial levels of support.

.

The article is worth looking at for its breakdowns of opinion by region, party, and other demographics. To my eyes it's Ed's understanding of trends (and his own position on queers or gay judges marrying sodomites) and the shape of things to come that led to his article. Wolf may be right that conservative Christians will not "surrender the Republican Party to strippers, drug addicts, queers, and anti-war isolationists," but Ed's and my point is that the electoral power of the Christian conservative is waning on this issue.

On to the more moralistic part of Wolf's assertions. I don't like this part. Although he hasn't put evidence of harm from gay marriage to the fore, he has some scarecrows to set out.

First up he takes issue with this assertion: public good requires orphans to be indoctrinated by homosexuals.

Where did the orphans come from? I guess we needed to talk about the children, and few are more vulnerable than orphans. We needed to talk about a danger haunting orphans, the danger of being snatched up by queers, for indoctrination. Presumably this means sodomite adoption. Apparently this holds intrinsic negative outcomes, which require attention to child welfare more than another adoption.

Perhaps this part is just a visceral rejection of the whole idea of gay parenting. That gays could be parents, good parents. It occurs to me that Wolf may be unaware how many lesbian moms and gay dads might already have children from heterosexual couplings, having come to sodomy later in life.

Anyhow, Wolf's reaction to Ed ends on a real sour note for me. The final line, "Parenthood is more than a handshake and anal sex," turns off any charitable or positive reading of Wolf's positions.

A simple reversal indicates to me that Wolf might mean: "Sodomite or queer parenthood is little more than a handshake and anal sex." If that is what he believes, too bad for him, because it is not true, of course. Adding repulsive connotation and now entailments of child sexual abuse to gay people/marriage, I thus take nothing away from Wolf's arguments but that gays are disgusting in all their ways and thus inimical to a good society, and so fuck the growing majority who believe no such thing, and fuck the rights of the disgusting outliers themselves.

Point to Ed Hudgins. Disgust is not an argument. Wolf may blames America's disgusting marriage laws for a lot of harms, though perhaps he does not hold these laws responsible for atrocities like the Isla Vista killings, as did Republican Ken Blackwell. I'd like to know if Wolf stands with Blackwell to this knuckle-headed extreme. That extreme turned Ed's stomach, which led to a considered argument, which Wolf dismisses entirely.

For those curious about where US opinion stands in international context, see this table from a recent Pew Global Views on Morality survey which looks at attitudes to homosexuality. Look especially at the lowest countries in the table.

Spain, destroyed by queers, gay judges and sodomite orphan anal sex. Among several notable others, including your northern neighbour, Wolf!

Signed,

A drug-addict queer anti-war Stripper supporter north of Seattle

ssmcanada.jpg

Edited by william.scherk
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why should the state have anything at all to do with marriage (and, by extension, the legal creation and maintenance of corporations)?

It's not a question of the state's authority to regulate marriage or to create corporations. Rather, there is and must always be a continuing family law jurisdiction, in both the current state and the laissez faire legal regime set forth in The Freeman's Constitution. Custody is always challengeable. Since homosexuals cannot produce offspring, it is implicit that their putative custody of children resulted from a divorce proceeding or an adoption. The rationality and objectivity of judges and the manner of their appointment matters. In the current state, Federal district judges are political appointees, and those who recently struck down state constitutional amendments and state laws that define marriage were declared homosexuals or political advocates of "LGBT rights" -- in other words, prejudiced and unfit to adjudicate such cases.

In 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (enacted September 21, 1996) by a 5-4 vote made possible by Obama's nomination and Democrat-majority Senate confirmation of justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Same-sex marriage was a national Democrat party platform commitment made in 2012, and the fuckers got away with it because young "social liberals" voted overwhelmingly for Obama twice. It's preposterous for Ed to suggest that he can entice liberals to switch sides and vote Republican.

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I don't know what he means by 'individual consent as a first principle.'

Almost all Objectivists and libertarians point to uncoerced individual consent as the touchstone and first principle of a just society.

I disagree. Individual consent is a personal ethical decision, irrelevant to the purposes and practical business of government.

Moral inquiry pertains specifically to the interests, powers, and dilemmas of an individual, epitomized by the question: "What shall I do?"

Legal philosophy addresses impersonal administration of public justice, litigation among parties in dispute, the combined might of a community, and custodial guardianship of certain individuals who are unable or legally prohibited to conduct their own affairs. [The Freeman's Constitution]

Laissez faire constitutional law flows from a single proposition, which is that no one may legally judge his own cause of action or act to penalize another without fair public trial and impartial due process of law. Laissez faire law is discovered and demonstrated in the process of litigation and trial. It cannot be legislated, codified, or imposed by a "lawgiver." [The Constitution of Government in Galt's Gulch, p. 126]

Equity jurisdiction is especially important for the protection of innocents. "Great inadequacy of consideration, joined with great disparity of mental ability in contracting a bargain, may justify equity in setting aside a sale or other contract." [ibid, p. 149, quoting Georgia equity rule 23-2-2 ]

Your consent does not extinguish law enforcement, nor a summons to appear in court as a defendant or witness or prospective juror; due process of law; a decision to void contracts in the interests of equitable justice; or the lawful business of national defense. The purpose of government and impersonal administration of public justice is not derived from or contingent upon any individual's voluntary consent.

Dictators in particular and men in general never admit to evil. The bloodiest villains always cling to the idea that they're right and just; that their actions, however cruel and horrible, are sanctified by some sort of 'mission' or moral code. Some of my critics have asserted that the best law is no law, pleading a bald contradiction in terms, as if acquittal was their birthright, a perfect haven of immunity, guarded by an impassable moat. Men are incapable of confessing openly that they want to escape justice. Friend or enemy of due process, we declare with one voice that our conduct is fair and honorable, with malice toward none. The claim is usually false. In simple, 18th century language: Men are not angels. Our protestations of innocence and truth are frequently exaggerated and unwarranted. That's why we need courts of justice, with compulsory production of evidence, cross examination, and felony penalties for perjury. Men lie. We also remember wrongly, forget, etc. Evildoers should not be allowed to judge their own innocence. [op cit., p. 131, emphasis added]

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It's preposterous for Ed to suggest that he can entice liberals to switch sides and vote Republican.

That's queer. To test for preposterous, note that Ed does not put his argument in that form. He is more suggesting that 'liberal' Republicans (and Independents) will drift away if the party continues to court the most extreme, dwindling minority.

I take Ed to be talking about political reality. It is unclear how opposing gay marriage serves electoral goals nationally. Without respect to a perfect constitutional regime, but with respect to the institutions as they are. It does no work to decry gay or LGBT-tainted judges having overturned DOMA and state law. State and federal marriage law is changing, and as it changes, so does public opinion.

Look at newer numbers, from March:

Support for gay rights more entrenched across the country.

Half the public says same-sex marriage is a protected right under the U.S. Constitution. And nearly six in 10 support such unions, regardless of how they feel about their constitutional protection. Gay adoption is just as accepted as same-sex marriage. And people reject allowing businesses to refuse service to gays, even based on religious principles.

wGayPoll05CLR.jpg

So, Wolf, what's your argument for the Republican party in the face of a softening of a former majority among the entire electorate? How do you want that party to play out the gay marriage issue in the coming electoral season, given the social reality we observe? Maybe, in a not too preposterous future, we will find that Folks generally are just not as morally disgusted as the evangelicals and you are now, and maybe the Republican party will go soft too, and will move on.

And then what? Will the freaking sky will fall in? Would anyone argue that the sky has fallen in in Canada in the number of years we have been subject to gay marriage? What is the worst that is going to happen to the fabric of society in the USA, seriously?

I just don't get the gravity of the situation. I don't see how Wolf's life will change whatsoever if a same-sex couple down the road has a marriage certificate.

Wolf, do you ever talk much to gay people in real life on these issues?

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Wolf, do you ever talk much to gay people in real life on these issues?

That's what you and I are doing at this moment. Opinion polls are not good criteria for constitutional law. You asked what difference it makes to me personally? Child custody of an innocent 12-year-old matters, if my wife and I die in a car wreck tomorrow -- and the moral character of our city and state and school districts matter to her future and ours. Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

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Wolf, do you ever talk much to gay people in real life on these issues?

That's what you and I are doing at this moment. Opinion polls are not good criteria for constitutional law. You asked what difference it makes to me personally? Child custody of an innocent 12-year-old matters, if my wife and I die in a car wreck tomorrow -- and the moral character of our city and state and school districts matter to her future and ours. Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

Sorry Wolf. This is too much for me.

--Brant

way too much

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Wolf, do you ever talk much to gay people in real life on these issues?

That's what you and I are doing at this moment. Opinion polls are not good criteria for constitutional law. You asked what difference it makes to me personally? Child custody of an innocent 12-year-old matters, if my wife and I die in a car wreck tomorrow -- and the moral character of our city and state and school districts matter to her future and ours. Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

Well, no, OL is not what I would call real life. Forums don't have the ebb and flow of questions and answers.

Re opinion polls being criteria -- again I call your attention to the argument made by Ed and extended by me. It is a political criteria, applied to the Republican party. His argument had little to do with constitutional law, nor does yours offer a constitutional correction to overturned DOMA and multiple state gay marriage law.

What will gay marriage/gay adoption matter if your 12 year-old becomes an orphan? You see a slippery slope where your child is likely to be sexually abused, prostituted, led into drug use, or otherwise harmed by any gay couple seeking to love and raise a child? Where does this fear and association of danger originate, I wonder.

I find the equation containing homosexuality, prostitution and drug use mostly prejudice and not amenable to reason. Is there a reasonable supposition that your orphan will be gay-adopted and then subject to serious abuse or appreciable harm? I don't think so, and there is where your moralism kind of hits home, the gay menace ... that's me.

I don't think I will get much traction arguing with Wolf on homosexuality as public health menace or menace to children. I will just mark my opposition to queer menace arguments and move on.

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I don't think I will get much traction arguing with Wolf on homosexuality as public health menace

In 2008, men who have sex with men accounted for 63% of primary and secondary syphilis cases in the United States. Men who have sex with men are 17 times more likely to develop anal cancer than heterosexual men. http://www.cdc.gov/msmhealth/STD.htm

2002%20DV%20Victim%20SO.gifhttp://www.ncavp.org/issues/DomesticViolence.aspx

Island and Letellier describe it as "the third most severe health problem facing gay men today," behind HIV/AIDS and substance abuse [Men Who Beat the Men Who Love Them: Battered Gay Men and Domestic Violence, Harrington Park Press, New York, 1991]. Among lesbians, a 1985 study by Gwat-Yong Lie and Sabrina Gentlewarrier reported that slightly more than half of 1,109 respondents had been abused by a woman partner in their lifetime ['Intimate Violence in Lesbian Relationships: Discussion of Survey Findings and Practice Implications', (1991) 15 Journal of Social Service Research 46]. Several smaller studies seem to support this finding. Coleman's 1990 study of 90 lesbians, for example, reported that 46.6% had experienced repeated acts of violence, and Ristock's 1994 survey of 113 lesbians reported that 41% been abused in at least one relationship with another woman ['And Justice for All?...The Social Context of Legal Responses to Abuse in Lesbian Relationships', (1994) 7 Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 420]. Studies of other populations in the LGBT community have documented even higher rates of abuse over respondents' lifetimes. The Portland, OR based Survivor Project's 1998 Gender, Violence, and Resource Access Survey of transgender and intersex individuals found that 50% of respondents had been raped or assaulted by a romantic partner ['Trans and Intersex Survivors of Domestic Violence: Defining Terms, Barriers, & Responsibilities', www.survivorproject.org/defbarresp.html]... LGBT survivors of domestic violence continue to exist in isolation, suffering long-term psychological, emotional and physical harm. Even in the best cases, providers frequently lack the skills necessary to respond appropriately to same-sex violence. Well-meaning and otherwise knowledgeable providers often fail to identify domestic violence in same-sex relationships and consequently do not respond appropriately. [NCAVP]

Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men represent approximately 2% of the United States population, yet are the population most severely affected by HIV. In 2010, young gay and bisexual men (aged 13-24 years) accounted for 72% of new HIV infections among all persons aged 13 to 24. In 2011, in the United States, gay and bisexual men accounted for 79% of 38,825 estimated HIV diagnoses among all males aged 13 years and older. [CDC Fact Sheet, 2014]

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Wolf,

I believe health problems will be solved by health science.

Using the reasoning of public health menace as a fundamental principle of family law, it could be argued that those in poverty suffer far worse health than wealthy folks. Poverty is a perfect health menace. An orphan, by that standard, would have to have a law protecting him or her from being adopted into poverty or the risk of poverty. Then we could probably look at regions of the country, occupations, school districts, and on and on. There are many parameters where the health stats are worse than others.

That's a Pandora's box we really don't need to open for the statists.

I do agree that where there is poor health, or health risks, there needs to be focus, remedies and prevention.

But nobody is going to eliminate homosexuality in mankind. It's been with us humans since antiquity. It will continue to be with us. I don't think it is a question of indoctrination (although some activists probably go in that direction).

I'm fine to live and let live. "It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg," to quote Jefferson (in another context but tangentially relevant).

The way society is going now, we will start having hard data on the effects on children raised under the care of gay parents. My gut tells me a loving, fair and intellectually stimulating environment is going to be far more important than the sexual orientation of the parents. If the stats start showing troubled kids due to homosexual parents, I have little doubt we humans will become more restrictive.

Michael

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Poverty is a perfect health menace.

Since 1964, America has spent $20.7 trillion on the War on Poverty — around 6.6 percent of gross domestic product. This includes housing, food, Medicaid, cash assistance, Head Start, and tax breaks like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Roughly one in three Americans receives some form of means-tested poverty assistance. [Heritage Foundation]

According to Michael Tanner, Cato’s director of health and welfare studies and author of The Poverty of Welfare: Helping Others in Civil Society, "Government spends $20,610 for every poor person in America, or $61,830 per poor family of three. Given that the poverty line for that family is just $18,530, we should have theoretically wiped out poverty in America many times over."

Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, income security and other entitlements now comprise 69% of all Federal spending.

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I appreciate the desire to persuade voters to dump welfare-state Democrats and join the Republican Party. It is not exactly a new idea. Ed's proposal to boot conservatives and make Republicans more "socially liberal" means walking away from Evangelical Protestants and Roman Catholics who comprise over 50% of the electorate [according to Pew Research]. How much sense does that make?

For over 30 years I have been among the very harshest, most strident critics of revealed religion. I have repeatedly implored readers to "identify religion for the sewer it is." For the Republican Party to say such a thing would be political suicide.

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas House member announced Friday she was leaving the Democratic Party to seek re-election as a Republican, citing what she calls Democratic hostility to her opposition to abortion and gay rights. “I’m sick of having the party work against me,” Rep. Jan Pauls said. “I don’t know that they could have done enough to keep me.” Pauls said the party was more centrist when she was first elected in 1996 when Gov. Joan Finney, also a Democrat, was in office. “By giving priority to those who advocate for abortion, the homosexual agenda, and even gun control, the Democrats have lost much public support and lost elected representatives because of their ever more leftist image,” she said.

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By Edward Hudgins

... "He made the even more outrageous assertion that “Throughout history, in order for totalitarianism, Marxism or a welfare state to occur two things have to happen—the marginalization of the church and the destruction of the family.” " ...

While I wouldn't apply that statement to the dead past or to other nations, it does logically apply to today in America.

It is impossible to build a liberal socialist welfare State upon any other foundation except immorality. Decent independent Americans are anathema to the State because those who govern themselves have no need to be governed, and so cannot be governed. It is the indecent who sold themselves into slavery by their own need for the bureaucratic approval of the State of their depravity. It is they who form the brick and mortar of the liberal socialist welfare state built in their own rotten image.

Greg

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Ed's proposal to boot conservatives and make Republicans more "socially liberal" means walking away from Evangelical Protestants and Roman Catholics ...

No reason to add the qualification Evangelical to Protestants since other Protestants also tend to vote Republican. On the other hand Catholics tend to vote Democrat. Ed's proposal means walking away from Protestants, about half the population.

This applies to the regular members. The leadership of each religion is something else again.

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Wolf, do you ever talk much to gay people in real life on these issues?

That's what you and I are doing at this moment. Opinion polls are not good criteria for constitutional law. You asked what difference it makes to me personally? Child custody of an innocent 12-year-old matters, if my wife and I die in a car wreck tomorrow -- and the moral character of our city and state and school districts matter to her future and ours. Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

Sorry Wolf. This is too much for me.

--Brant

way too much

Wolf: "because"

Making these things into public health issues is slapping people down to set them up for the mercy of the state. In this context homosexuality is euphemistic for homosexuals and moral differentiation from heterosexuals who, by the same standard are a "public health question" in Africa or heterosexuality is a public health question. But over there the straights are the majority population and aren't going to be group condemned, rounded up and dealt with. In the 1930s in Germany Jews were a public health question or issue. Note also the two different categories you used. Prostitution and drug use are things people do while homosexuality is what some people are. The built in assumptions are 1) homosexuals engage in sex and 2) do it destructively or irrationally--that is, they all do and are ipso facto walking around "health" menaces.

What happens out of such considerations are lynchings, stonings and concentration camps. Torches and pitchforks.

--Brant

dehumanization

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Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

All of those certainly are health issues. And behavioral diseases such as hepatitis c, chlamydia, aids, herpes, gonorrhea, and syphilis are all physical symptoms of a cause. But there is no need to be concerned, for medical science constantly labors to come up with new chemical compensations for the consequences of behavior.

American society has become absorbed in its futile never ending quest for the Holy Grail:

Immorality without consequence.

Greg

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Homosexuality, like prostitution and drug use, is a public health question.

All of those certainly are health issues. And behavioral diseases such as hepatitis c, chlamydia, aids, herpes, gonorrhea, and syphilis are all physical symptoms of a cause. But there is no need to be concerned, for medical science constantly labors to come up with new chemical compensations for the consequences of behavior.

American society has become absorbed in its futile never ending quest for the Holy Grail:

Immorality without consequence.

Greg

But not excluding the consequence of inappropriate moralizing.

--Brant

don't forget the heterosexual consequences of millions of aborted babies

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Yup. Post facto moralizing. I've deemed such-n-such wrong, therefore I can show that all that follows is bad.

I know of gay couples every bit as commited as many heteros. I know of two who've adopted abandoned black children who from all evidence are going to be as good as parents - well, as my own were - if such were measurable. The decisions I gather, were made with the utmost caring responsibility and forethought, which is more than can be said sometimes for hetero couples deciding on having children.

All that Objectivists and libertarians should be offended by is the fact that gay rights should even be important. It's offensive to individualism, to individual rights and to the individual gay. Of course I understand the context: one bunch of people (the religious) holds some influence, so all one can do is create your own influence group in self-defence. As bad though, or worse imo, it is the progressives who picked up the banner and righteously uphold gays' 'collective rights'. The devil and the deep blue sea, morally.

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don't forget the heterosexual consequences of millions of aborted babies

Fetus snuffing also serves the same goal of immorality without consequence. The medical establishment has become quite sophisticated at mitigating the consequences of behavior because this is what people demand... and so they get exactly what they deserve.

Greg

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