The letter YOU sent to parliament objecting to gay marriage. Pt 2.

Another blog by neil hart on gay stuff and the lutheran church of australia

My heavily pregnant daughter came home from the vide store with, “She’s Having a Baby”. (kenin bacon, elizabeth mcgovern)

Are you kidding me???

thats like me bringing home a video called “sad, boring, old guy sitting on the couch typing”

sigh….

anyway… part 2 of the Letter YOU sent to the parliament…

Remember where we left off? i said something like…

“the logic behind the letter is simple, impecable and increadibly disturbing. The only “proper” married sex is sex that leads to reproduction. Gay sex is non reproductive. therefore. gays cant get married.”

after being challenged by greg…

You’ve bent the statement and intent of the document so far out of shape, I’m not sure it can be put back in order. They may have to reprint from scratch and in bigger font so you can read it.

The document clearly states the intimate union of husband and wife as a fulfilment of the marriage relationship in and of itself. refer to points 2.3 – 2.6 in the document. It’s very clear.

I reread the whole document…again…

well, no, it isnt clear and, no, it certainly doesn’t refer to “intimate union of husband and wife as a fulfilment of the marriage relationship in and of itself”. the intent of the whole document and the letter to parliament that forms its culmination is to assert that proper married sex is only that which has the capacity to impregnate the woman. And that also is the reading of the other commentators. But…hey… the floor is still open for others to agree with greg…

ill just repeat some of the section from the pastor’s background notes so that we remeber what we are talking about…

By describing marriage as a comprehensive union of spouses, we mean  the bodily union of a man and a woman whereby the two become “one flesh”. If two people want to unite in the comprehensive way proper to marriage, they must, among other things, unite organically – that is, in the bodily dimension of their being through sexual intercourse…In sexual intercourse, but not in any other form of sexual contact, a man’s and a woman’s bodies coordinate by way of their sexual organs for the common biological purpose of reproduction. In this way they perform the first step of the complex reproductive process… marriage remains deeply and uniquely oriented to bearing and rearing children. By contrast, two men or two women cannot achieve the same kind of union, since there is no child-oriented outcome or function toward which their bodies may coordinate. Same sex partnerships lack essential and natural orientation to children: they cannot be sealed by the generative act. (from section 3 of the document)

so, according to the letter,  marital sex is properly for the “generative act” or a “complimentary union” which can lead to conception…ok..so what about the problem that Helga raised in the blog comments?  what about all those straight people for whom sex can never be a “generative act.”?

what about the 70 year old couple, both widowed, both with families of their own who fall in love and wish to marry but have neither the desire nor the ability to have children?.

what about the couple where the man has a vasectomy or the woman has a tubal ligation, or either of them are infertile for any reason?

what about a young couple who are both profesionals and dont desire to have children at all?

Listen to this “sage” peice of advice for these poor people…from the document…

4:46-47(some) circumstances unfortunately keep certain people from marriage.

This is so, not only for those with exclusively homosexual attractions, but also for people who cannot marry because of, for example, prior and pressing family obligations incompatible with marriage’s comprehensiveness and orientation to children, inability to find a mate, or any other cause. Those who face such difficulties should in no way be marginalised or otherwise discriminated against, and they deserve our support in the face of what are often considerable burdens. But none of this establishes the first mistaken assumption, that fulfilment is impossible without regular outlets for sexual release – an idea that devalues many people’s way of life.

Yup, sorry infertile people, young proffesional couple, elderly couple, just like the poor gays, if your sex is not “compatible with marriage’s comprehensiveness and orientation toward children”,  then… no sex for you!

but, hey, dont be sad. just coz you’re forbidden from obtaining “sexual release”, a sexless life isnt a devalued life…

sigh…

anyway….moving on….the document also make a rather spurious claim.

Marriage has a place in the law because a relationship between a man and a woman is the kind of relationship that may produce children. Marriage is linked to children, for the sake of children, protecting their identity and their nurture by a mother and a father. The State would have no interest in the permanence and exclusivity of marriage if it were not the fact that marriage may produce children.

Now, when one says something as if it were fact, that does not automatically make it fact. This statement is simply not true. Im not an expert in marriage law but i was questioned by a judge in the Armadale court on my understanding of the Marriage act before they would let me marry anyone. I passed that test. i doubt that these people would.

the state does have an interest in the uniquely permant and exclusive married relationship and the states’ actions in protecting married relationships do not only revolve around children. When refugee status is granted to an individual their married partner (and only their married partner) will be reunited with their spouse and rightly so. We want the state to be concerned about the reuniting of that family unit, whether there are children involved or not. If people in the military are moved around the country or overseas, the state considers and caters for the needs of that service person’s spouse, whether there are children or not. The state does give consideration to defacto relationships however they are not held at the same level of importance as the married relationship precisely because of the permanene and exclusivity of marriage.

Anyway…im getting tired of this so i know that you, dear reader,  definitely are (yup..jback to just one of you. the old lady next door has nodded off to sleep…she’s not dead is she?…)

so…to my last point.

You know, i really had to laugh. the letter includes one section that was supposed to serve a s a critique of the opposing “revisionist” view. and i found myself wholeheartedly agreeing with the very thing they were highlighting as a problem

3.10 In contrast to the current understanding of marriage, the revisionist view asserts that marriage is the union of two people (whatever their sexual identity or orientation) who commit to romantically loving and caring for each other and to sharing the burdens and benefits of domestic life, so long as love and mutual care remain. It is essentially a union of hearts and minds, enhanced by whatever forms of sexual intimacy both partners find agreeable.

Yes. Yes.and Yes.  Give me this  “revisionist” definition of marriage rather than the horrible and (apparently) “current” view of marriage that serves as the backdrop to this letter….ie.  a man putting his penis into a woman’s vagina and ejaculating fertile sperm. (i know…crass isnt it!)

let me finish by taking the “revisionist” view and building on it a little. Let me talk about “one flesh”  and marriage and sexuality. But let me do it in a way that i was taught to by my professors at Luther Sem. To these men i owe my respect and my gratitude. they opened the scriptures to me in a way that is beautiful and alive, in a way that reveals the loving heart of God.

“at last” says Adam , “bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh”….such poetry. such beautiful words to express how i feel about my beloved. I experience that reality…that beauty… every time i touch my beloved’s hand, when we kiss, when we lie in bed, faces almost touching, falling off to sleep and feel each others breath. When we cover our embarrasment and insecurities with a great wave of love and dare to tell of the things that give us pleasure. When all of the varieties of sexual intimacy are employed and the focus is always…always….on the pleasure that i can give my beloved. that is God ordained and that is beautiful. and it is true when we are 18 and when we are 80. and it is true and beautiful for a man with a vasectomy and a woman with an IUD.

ultimately, “one flesh” is about people, young and old, black and white, gay and straight, who feel an ache of lonliness, who know that, for them,  “it is not good to be alone…”. For these people one fleshi s about finding a life’s partner and uniting lovingly, caringly, in all manner of emotional and physical ways. For these people it is about realising that God himself has brought them to this most beautiful and sacred space where the two can say together, “At last, bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh”.