Tuesday, March 26, 2013


So today is the day that the Supreme Court is deciding what to do with California's Proposition 8. Social media is plastered with debates about gay marriage, most of which are predictable. Several people have been posting the following picture in support of gay marriage:

Simple, eye-catching and to the point, this symbol effectively communicates where a person stands on the issue rather quickly. One of my Mormon Facebook friends posted this image as her profile pic which was met with the following comment:

"We solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God... Or have you forgotten?"

It should be common knowledge by now that Mormons are almost universally against gay marriage, if not purely homophobic. This view stems primarily from an official statement issued in 1995 by the Church and is functionally scripture for many members. In "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" Mormon leaders officially state that marriage is ordained by god as being between a man and a woman for the expressed purpose of procreation and building families. And of course their reasoning behind all of this is their deeply held religious beliefs, which they wish to impose on the rest of us.

Now, generally speaking I am in favor of free speech and Mormons certainly have the right to oppose whatever they want based on whatever reasoning (or lack thereof) they wish to employ. But as soon as they try to legislate those beliefs with nothing more than a vague claim that homosexuality weakens ones spirituality, or that it is bad for kids (a claim which contradicts several sociological studies from the past several decades), then they have crossed the line. Those claims need to be substantiated through empirical evidence if they intend to have people not of their faith abide by them.

A while ago someone told me that the reason marriage is ordained by god as being between a man and a woman is because that is how marriage was established with Adam and Eve. Setting aside the utter lack of evidence that Adam and Eve actually existed, I wonder how this could stand in light of Mormonism's polygamist history? You see, for the first several decades of Mormonism, polygamy was taught as being essential to one's eternal salvation. But how can this be if the claim is true that god ordained Adam to have only one wife?

Mormons seem to have jumped on the mainstream Christian notion of "traditional families" because it suits their current agenda (to appear more mainstream Christian). Looking at the first 70 years of the Church's history tells us that doctrinally Mormons do not believe that traditional families started with and continued since Adam and Eve or that they are the foundation of society. Even if traditional families really are the foundation of society, how does this demonstrate that being raised by two men or two women is harmful? Shouldn't we be able to actually see the harm? Aside from a few fringe ideological researchers, why don't sociologists and psychologists report on all of this harm?

A thorough search of the Bible will turn up very few examples of so-called traditional marriage, but many examples of polygamy, polyandry, incest, concubines, sex slaves and so on, not to mention arranged marriages where girls were bought and sold as property. So tell me, when exactly did this tradition start? Even if you could answer that, it is still a tradition based solely on religious views and cannot be constitutionally imposed on others.


The Atheist Experience on marriage in the Bible:

And an article on today's proceedings from The Onion (some language).

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