The Unintended Hilarity of the Anti-Gay Movement

George Weigel, who is apparently a “Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center” has written a terrible article about marriage. His mistakes are pretty revealing, and I’ll write more about them later. For now I just want to point out one hilarious bit.

Weigel’s rehashing the idea that marriage predates government, so no government can dictate what marriage it; it can only recognize it. A government trying do otherwise is a danger to freedom:

And if the state can define marriage by diktat, why not other basic human relationships, like the parent-child relationship, the doctor-patient relationship, the lawyer-client relationship, or the priest-penitent relationship? There is no principled reason why not. Thus gay marriage is another expression of that soft totalitarianism that Benedict XVI aptly calls the “dictatorship of relativism.

Did you catch the funny bit? No, not the “soft totalitarianism.” It’s this:

…the lawyer-client relationship…

Yeah. In George’s universe, lawyers and their clients predate government (and therefore laws?). Thus government cannot define that relationship but can only recognize it, based on those universal and prehistoric customs regulating confidentiality, conflict of interest, and billable hours.

These guys, sometimes they crack me up.

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9 comments to The Unintended Hilarity of the Anti-Gay Movement

  • 1
    Spunky says:

    I believe Weigel intends to say that marriage is a “deep truth” (his words). What I want from him is a clear explantion of exactly what that truth is. Of course it suffices to argue gay marriage can’t be a real marriage if we know that marriage can only be between a man and a woman. But I’m wondering if gay marriages are the only types of marriages allowed by our government that don’t fit the Catholic definition.
    Some examples:
    1) Consent laws. What was God’s cutoff age for the proper time for a person to marry? If no age exists, then what right does the state have to define marriage by diktat, when we really should be following the word of God?
    2) Inter-reilgion marriages. Apparently Catholicism does not recognize a marriage between a Catholic and someone from another religion (I learned this from you, Rob). By allowing these sham marriages, the government has successfully redefined marriage! (Now, I suppose the Catholic Church might admit that these relationships are marriages, just not ones that they recognize. Someone can correct me since I’m not an expert.)
    3) Arranged marriages. Bad? Yes. Marriages? Yes.
    4) Polygamy.
    5) I’m bored. Weigel’s article is a waste of time.

  • 2
    mikenola says:

    i kind of like the the doctor-patient relationship and the priest-penitent relationship? entries for humor.
    Doctor Patient only goes back to 18th century Europe and was never a “law” that prevented testifying in court, or revealing to higher authority (husband?) information they demanded. It merely was to prevent gossip as a policy.The U.S. formalized that legal privilidge somewhere in the 1820’s
    Pentinent Priest is the same thing. The King was always allowed to know what someone confessed to their priest, under danger of torture if need be.
    The Holy See demanded that right from the Church of England and that passed out to the rest of Europe and the America’s.
    All these claims of Gods will really just make me laugh most of the time..

  • 3
    Matt Flipago says:

    Laws existed before government in many places. Such areas often have common law, where cases are heard by judges and often take precedent into account, some binding, others not. Some of these judges are part of a government, like the supreme court, but others can be based on a system of judges and cases where parties consent to a judge, and enforcment is based on the consent from the court case, and intersubjective prefrences based on the fairness of such court cases. Civil law requires government, common law does not. Examples can be the Xeer of Somalia, Early British common law prior to the Norman invasion, and many religous law systems.

  • 4

    […] it explicitly: Every American’s kidneys enjoy socialized medicine.• I had not realized that the lawyer-client relationship was ordained by God in the mists of prehistory and that viewing it as a social construct, or as anything over which the state might have […]

  • 5
    Jeffrey Kramer says:

    “Soft totalitarianism” is also good.
    Q. “In what ways is gay marriage like Nazi Germany?”
    A. “Look, John, if you don’t want to get married, you should just say so.”

  • 6
    lawguy says:

    Well Matt I would guess it would depend on how you define government.  

  • 7

    Another hilarious part of his article is that he’s arguing for a separation between government definitions and marriage in order to argue FOR government to decide what is and is not a “marriage.” 
    If he truly believed that marriage should be defined by the couple involved, their friends & families, and (possibly) their church, then he would be AGAINST people passing secular laws dictating which couples do and do not qualify as “married.”

  • 8
  • 9
    Rilian says:

    But they want the govt to dictate what marriage is….

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