Thers has a little piece up that I meant to link to the other day, commenting on some Clown Hall piece on the decline of the sanctity of bedrock institutions like marriage [or something equally convoluted], written by a wingnut called Ken Connor. Here is a snippet of the annoying piece, just to give you a taste of what it is that Thers is making fun of:
[blah blah blah fart] precipitous decline of marriage. What was once venerated as a holy, sacramental institution is now considered an optional, if slightly outmoded social convention, a stultifying but necessary financial convenience. This week’s Washington Post illustrates that proposition. In a recent article, the Post discusses the increasing number of couples opting to have a friend rather then a religious officiant preside over their wedding ceremonies.
Seeking to distance themselves from any prescriptive religious connotations that may cling to marriage, self-proclaimed “hippy types” are redefining the institution along highly personalized, pseudo-spiritual, distinctly non-sacramental lines. From the article:
“Members of the American University crew shared a love of jam bands, including Phish and Moe, as well as a passion for environmentalism and nature. Their wedding ceremonies often reflected those interests.
Some of them talked about vigorously scrubbing the word “God” from their rituals; instead readings came from environmental poet Wendell Berry or novels, such as “Einstein’s Dreams,” which explores human beings’ relationship to time passing.”
It’s that whole “venerated as a holy, sacramental institution” and this part that comes after it, about glue or something, that is annoying Thers:
Traditional marriage (specifically, Christian marriage) has through the centuries served as a critical civilizing force in society. It has been, quite literally, the glue that holds communities and peoples together. As traditionally understood, the bonds of marriage are forged not by man, but by God. They are not merely legal, physical, or emotional, they are spiritual and sacred.
Yeah, so Thers is straight and married and here is what he has to say about that:
That’s precisely why gays want to get married. Steve says to Bill, “before all our loved ones, please let’s together forever participate in what was once venerated as a holy, sacramental institution that is now considered an optional, if slightly outmoded social convention, a stultifying but necessary financial convenience, you sweet bitch you.”
Anyway, I’m straight, and not religious, and I’m pretty sure I got married because of the love thing, and also because I was pretty sure I would like being married and having kids.
There’s no mystery as to why God-botherers want us all to hold to 14th century social norms: it’s good to be the priest.
But as for me — stop bugging me. I’m a straight married guy. Whatever. Stop trying to call what I have some sort of Spiritual and Sacred hot-shit win for Mankind. It’s not. It’s just what I am.
I’ve often thought that the weird way that Religious Right characters talk about marriage — this up in the clouds, sanctified bedrock blah blah blah crap — was more than a little bit unhinged from the reality of married life for the average American. It’s good to know that their weird rhetoric on the topic creeps out opposite-married people too.
You’ll want to head over to Thers’s blog and read the rest of his post, because there’s a whole riff in there about glue holding people together that you won’t want to miss. I’d quote it here, but y’know. It includes the phrase “sticky nipples.”