Friday, September 11, 2009

Gay Marriage and the MRM...

For some strange reason gay marriage (or as it is correctly called civil union or same sex marriage) sparks some interesting discussions among MRAs. Being out of Germany, as we already have civil union here and I don´t see it as such a big thing, some arguments often confuse me. Apparently I am in good company. Recently on Glenn Sack´s blog.
I pay attention to social science on the value of marriage to children and society and there are few people who are more adamant on the subject than I am. In fact, I'd say that the decline of marriage and the astonishing rise in out-of-wedlock childbearing may be the single most important issue we face as a society. So when anyone claims that something stands to threaten or further damage the institution of marriage, I listen hard.
And I still don't get it.
It's true that marriage has always been between a man and a woman (or a man and several women). But in the past, it served to enhance human procreation by giving men a greater reason to invest resources in offspring they could be reasonably certain were theirs. That was at a time when expanding the number of human beings in the world was perceived as important by human beings. Now the opposite is true. There are far too many of us for the resources of the planet. Contraception is more important than procreation.
That doesn't mean that marriage isn't important, though. It is vitally important to the children that we choose to have. But I completely fail to understand how granting the right to marry to homosexual men and lesbian women threatens the rights or abilities of the rest of us to marry, and have and raise children. On the contrary, I view changing laws to permit gay and lesbian marriage as an expression of how much we value the institution. We think it's such a good idea that we don't want to prevent anyone from doing it.
And, contrary to what the article cited implies, lesbians and gay men adopt and raise children. I know several of each who've adopted and, although the synergy of male-female parenting styles is largely lost in those couples, are they really worse for children than raising them in foster care or orphanages? That's not a tough one to answer.
The article says that if we allow same-sex marriage, "children would view marriage completely different (sic) and fewer are likely to set marriage as a goal." But why would that be so? Indeed, gay and lesbian children would be more likely to "set marriage as a goal" because they'd know they could.
I definately share Glenn´s sentiment. It gets especially confusing when in a discussion among divorced fathers suddenly marriage, formerly known as peonage-contract that enslaves all men, turns into something sacred by god, only a man and a woman can share.

As I said before, like quite a few countries on that planet we have same sex marriage here and pretty much nothing changed. So for me this discussion falls into the "who cares category". Who cares, not because on the topic of same sex marriage (nothing wrong with that imho), but on the topic of men´s rights.

The problem I see, and the same is true for abortion to some degree, that focusing on that issues distracts from the real issues there are. And there are many. And another problem I have is the impression this makes on the whole movement, because people will very likely hear these arguments and come to the conclusion that the MRM is nothing more than another anti-gay / pro-life group. For once, the MRM was not about these topics and secondly there are already plenty groups that focus on that issues.

All I am trying to say here is, focus. Don´t get distracted, and look at the real issues. Any thoughts on that one?

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