Earlier this month, and somehow without a fraction of the noise of the to-ing and fro-ing in California, Vermont and Iowa completed votes that now allow same sex marriage. This enormous victory for realising the rights of loving couples to be recognised as such has, shockingly enough, upset some people. Because it’s now the case that every single person in Vermont and Iowa is now forced, BY LAW, to be in a single sex marriage. That might be wrong. It’s pretty hard to tell when you watch the remarkable advert from an organisation called NOM (National Organisation For Marriage).
You’d be forgiven for being confused by the name into thinking they were for marriage, but what their catchy acronym fails to encapsulate is their rather fevered specificity over the matter. Marriage is for men and women only they say because, well, common sense says so. What they mean is, their interpretation of their religious values says so. In fact, there’s a more sinister reason for the obfuscation: were they to be clear about their reasoning, it would put an even larger irony-shaped dent in their claimed position of defending “freedom of speech”. Here’s the ad:
This use of “freedom of speech”, like some sort of magical incantation that turns all argument no matter how batshit crazy into appeals for the very rights of mankind, is getting a little tired. Especially when it’s being used in the context of so desperately trying to prevent freedoms. Their position, would they only have the sprinkling of balls to state it, is they believe being gay is wrong. This position is usually built out of a combination of learned, ingrained intolerance, fear of the ‘other’, and revulsion at the idea of men’s bottoms and willies getting together. None of which, of course, has any bearing on a gay couple’s wish to be married. This leads to the wholly irrational response from the religious right (for it is always rooted in the very bowels of religiosity) that somehow “their” marriage is being taken away from them.
The advert highlights this to hilarious effect, the fear beginning with notions that somehow their own rights are being attacked in an unspecified way, and reaching psychotic paranoia that some great, thunderous evil is approaching, and it’s all because of those damned gays.
You might imagine visiting Om Nom Nom‘s website would provide at least allusions toward what these threats to marriage might be. Indeed, there’s an entire page of the site dedicated to the very subject, “The Threat to Marriage“. Except, in none of the three sections on that page do they at any point even hint at what threat there is to marriage as a result of same sex partnerships. They instead state that evil rich gays are buying politics, and that if something isn’t done right now, gay marriage will sweep across the entire nation of the United States. We’re then told that,
“NOM seeks to… educate the public about the consequences of same-sex marriage in Massachusetts, especially for children and people of faith”
I’m not convinced they do seek to do this, since they appear to pathologically avoid stating exactly what these consequences are. Dig further and you’ll find the literature they wish people to pass out at their churches (and indeed synagogues).
These pdfs offer a list of reasons why marriage is beneficial to children, mixing some reasonable statements about stability with completely misunderstood statistics. None of which, of course, has any bearing on the subject, since the people they’re so furious about are trying to, er, get married. However, flip it over and finally we get to find out how gay marriage is going to destroy us all.
First there’s this excellent claim:
“Spin a globe and pick virtually any place on earth at any previous time in human history; you will find that they do marriage one way — between men and women. There may be other differences, but marriage has always required a husband and a wife.”
Presumably they use “men and women” in their plural terms on purpose, to get around the slightly awkward problem that when spinning that globe, monogamous marriage might not be what you find. Those differences there might be, eh?
But then comes their repeated refrain, this deeply strange belief that somehow gay marriage is denying children of their parents.
“A loving and compassionate society comes to the aid of motherless and fatherless children, but no compassionate society intentionally deprives children of their own mom or dad. But this is what every same-sex home does — and for no other reason but to satisfy adult desire.”
Which children? Perhaps it’s not worth trying to analyse the logic of these lunatics too closely, when their advertising warns us of impending gay doom, but how can this statement be interpreted? Do they believe that gay couples are stolen from heterosexual marriages? In the night the rich gay mafia, funded by Tim Gill, sneak into houses and steal children’s parents, forcing them into gay relationships? Or do they think that all adults who don’t breed are denying the existence of some otherwise inevitable child? Are spinsters also part of this oncoming cloud? And the infertile?
“How will my same-sex marriage hurt your marriage?” asks the pamphlet. The answer:
“Same-sex marriage advocates want to force everyone to dramatically and permanently alter our definition of marriage and family. The great, historic, cross-cultural understanding of marriage as the union of husband and wife will be called bigotry in the public square. The law will teach your children and grandchildren that there is nothing special about mothers and fathers raising children together, and anyone who thinks otherwise is a bigot.”
But how will my same-sex marriage hurt your marriage? everyone is left asking. Because you sort of didn’t answer the question. You instead went onto more of the frothing paranoid ranting about how all straight people will go to prison. Once again, their logic is so gruesomely flawed. They wish to advocate marriage as the ideal situation for raising children, for which there’s decent evidence. But they then wish to prevent marriages. Demonstrating their remarkable inability to detect irony, the following question goes,
“Is same-sex marriage like interracial marriage? Laws against interracial marriage were about keeping two races apart, so that one race could oppress the other, and that is wrong. Marriage is about bringing male and female together, so that children have mothers and fathers, and so that women aren’t stuck with the enormous, unfair burdens of parenting alone— and that is good.”
Right, so oppressing others is “wrong“. Noted. And… single mothers have a hard time. And that has what to do with being gay? Once again we’re back to the Black Ops Gays nabbing children’s fathers and enslaving them into their evil regime. Then of course we’re told that it’s a slippery slope, what next?, polygamy? Marrying octopuses? HEROIN IN SCHOOL LUNCHES??! Churches will suffer because imposing their belief system on others will somehow become some sort of bigoted act! And what about schools?
“Consider a recent National Public Radio story from Boston. An eighth-grade teacher there teaches about gay sex “thoroughly and explicitly.” When asked if parents complained about their children learning such explicit material, this teacher said, “Give me a break. It’s legal now.” Heather and her two Mommies will become standard kindergarten fare. Our children need to hear a positive message about marriage.”
There you go! A teacher in Boston might have said something in a school (no reference is given to authenticate this story), so that’s it! Children will be forced to have gay sex in the classroom from aged 5 – it’s inevitable.
Still, I don’t seem to have learned how heterosexual marriage is going to be hurt. Which is odd. Since they promised. And finally, there’s a wonderful section on NOM’s site offering you a script for responding to the challenges from the liberal gay elite. So when someone asks you if you’re a bigot for wanting to prevent other people from having the same rights as you because of their sexuality, you just say,
“Do you really believe people like me who believe mothers and fathers both matter to kids are like bigots and racists? I think that’s pretty offensive, don’t you? Particularly to the 60 percent of African-Americans who oppose same-sex marriage. Marriage as the union of husband and wife isn’t new; it’s not taking away anyone’s rights. It’s common sense.”
I’m not entirely clear how it’s offensive to black people to point out when someone’s being a homophobe, but then I’m probably not stark raving mad enough. So I’d like to apologise to sixty percent of black people when I point out how NOM are stark raving mad homophobes. I’m sorry for the offence caused. Oh, and of course, it’s “common sense”.
So there you go. There’s a terrifying homosexual storm coming, and it’s going to steal all daddies from their children, and schools are going to force children into bumming each other, and your own marriage is going to be destroyed because of common sense.
Meanwhile, here’s Funny Or Die‘s response to NOM’s commercial.