I’ve been thinking about same-sex marriage recently (no, I haven’t got a boyfriend!), but in terms different from what the public is currently debating. In light of the recent California Supreme Court decision mandating equal marriage rights (and rites?) for same-sex couples, I thought I’d share them.
The Religious Reich’s war against same-sex marriage is only part of a larger picture. Perhaps if it is framed in the context of creedism, rather than just that of homophobia or heterosexism, we can create more effective strategies to stop it.
At the rock bottom of the RR’s theocratic agenda is an appeal to creedism. They believe that they have a “right” to shove their particular (and often peculiar) doctrines down the throats of every man, woman, and child on the planet. This is true whether you are discussing Christian or Islamic Fundamentalists (Jewish Fundamentalists only want to force their doctrines upon people living in Israel or in Hassidic communities elsewhere).
There are plenty of new and old religions in the world, with millions of their members in the USA, who do not agree with the sexual, reproductive, or marital doctrines of conservative monotheism. Why should one group of religions be able to use the power of civil law to enforce their doctrines and deny others’ doctrines?
The fact that Judeo-Christian-Islamic creedists are a voting majority in America is no more relevant to our civil rights than the fact that racists and sexists were once (and in some places still are) the majority of US citizens. The tyranny of the majority is specifically restrained by the constitution.
I advocate fighting this battle over marriage rights, reproductive rights, sex education rights, and all related issues in terms of resistance to creedism. The old protest phrase, “Keep your rosaries off my ovaries,” cuts to the heart of RR bigotry. Their views are rooted in the Torah, Bible, and Koran, so monotheistic creedists are “obligated” to be homophobic and opposed to all sexual freedom issues, just as they were once “obligated” to be racist or sexist.
People are entitled to have any sort of religious beliefs or non-beliefs they like. They are not entitled, under the US constitution, to force all other citizens to live under those same opinions, whether they call them “God’s Law” or anything else.
It may be easier for those of us who are (more or less) “straight” to use the “Homophobia is creedist” frame, but we might all consider using it in appropriate circumstances. Let’s make creedism as socially unacceptable as racism and sexism, and perhaps heterosexism will become equally unacceptable.
Go to www.beyondmarriage.org for some additional interesting thoughts on this issue. I think Robert Heinlein would be pleased at their goals.
As a Neopagan Druid, I’ll be happy to perform same-sex or multiple marriage ceremonies for anyone who asks me to do so. I consider it an obligation of my priesthood. Of course, I would hope that the couple/triad/quad/etc. would help out with any subsequent legal costs!