I did an interview wth HuffPo Gay Voices. Of course some might call this an admission of defeat—because I repeat my belief that it is clear they now have 5 votes for gay marriage on the Supreme Court.
But really it is about taking up the next battle. If true, what next for those of us who do not believe in gay marriage?
A taste here:
‘ What’s next? In my view people who believe in the traditional understanding of marriage, and believe that it matters, have to become a creative minority, finding way to both express these sexual views, culturally, artistically and intellectually and to engage with the newly dominant cultural view of marriage respectfully but not submissively.
Lots of thoughts packed into the latter sentence.
As for social conservatives as a political movement, even to retain religious liberty protections is going to require a new and more serious engagement with politics. Gay rights people donate enormously more money to direct political action than Christian conservatives who tend to prefer giving to [501(c)(3) nonprofit, tax-exempt] ministries who do research, pastor-organizing and spokespersoning — which is fine as long as you don’t imagine you are going to have sufficient political influence that way. It’s a failed strategy on its own.’
On the Arizona religious liberty law Gov Jan Brewer vetoed;
‘What I see, as I suspect you do: powerful corporations, elite institutions are all lining up to protect and proclaim the dignity of gay people. Small numbers of unusually devoted Christians are just trying to feed their kids. I do not see who is benefited really by putting them out of business. Melissa has five kids, her husband (I was told) now hauls garbage. I understand it would be a rude shock to realize the woman happy to bake you cupcakes doesn’t want to bake your happy wedding cake, but I really don’t get deciding to put her out of business. It is abstract justice versus real concrete and unreasonable harm.”
On polls showing support for gay marriage growing, including among religious people:
‘ I would not expect religious people to remain insulated, which is one reason of course I thought the fight over [same-sex marriage bans] matters culturally and broadly. It is not just a matter of making some gay couples happy by providing benefits to help them live their lives with no consequences for anyone else. It’s a broad cultural shift redefining not only the place of gay people in society but of traditional religious believers as well. And also of what marriage is and what it means.
A lot of people are going to want to escape from the moral disapproval and really sometimes the open hatred directed at you for maintaining the classic view of marriage — the view that I would say goes something like this, at least in my head and heart: “We are born male and female, our bodies contain a call to come together in love to make and raise the next generation as their mothers and fathers. Yes, many people, for a variety of reasons some, under their control and many not, are not going to end up being married; we should be as kind to one another as we can manage.’
This is the view being discarded and many people will try in a variety of ways to reconcile the new culturally dominant marriage narrative with their religious views and their views about human nature. I am one of those who believe my job is to explain, first to myself and then possibly to others, why I cannot. ”
Thank you for our fellowship, and your courage. Together we face the next phase: creatively working to sustain a culture–or a subculture– of marriage under very challenging new conditions.