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by
Scott Ott

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July 31, 2014 - 11:18 am
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How many more social conservatives must we endure as they make the utilitarian case for traditional marriage, dodging the more frank, powerful and controversial biblical case, summarized thus: “God says.”?

In Sen. Marco Rubio’s recent speech at Catholic University, as my colleague Rodrigo Sermeño reports, Rubio defended “strong values for a strong America.” But the senator connected these values only tangentially with the God who designed us and who sanctifies our relationships. He rested the weight of his argument upon the social sciences, history, conventional wisdom and stats about wealth and happiness.

Thousands of years of human history have shown that the ideal setting for children to grow up is with a mother and a father committed to one another, living together, and sharing the responsibility of raising their children. And since traditional marriage has such an extraordinary record of success at raising children into strong and successful adults, states in our country have long elevated this institution and set it apart in our laws.

This is what I mean by the utilitarian argument. Essentially, he says that marriage works, so the government should recognize it.

“I was taught certain values that led me to live my life in a sequence that has a proven track record of success. In America, if you get an education, find a good job, and wait until marriage to have children, your chances of achieving economic security and professional fulfillment are incredibly high,” Rubio said.

Rubio calls this the “success sequence,” and attributes our moral decline to the “erosion of the success sequence.”

But the truth is that the social and moral wellbeing of our people has a direct and consequential impact on their economic wellbeing.

Top Rated Comments   
I'm for smaller government. Get government OUT of marriage. Whether traditional or not. If traditional marriage is an establishment of religion, then so is any other sort of marriage. If only a jurist had grabbed this point of view and run with it.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
"God says" isn't an argument; it's an appeal to authority designed to end argument. For those of us who are conservative but not religious, Rubio's argument is more persuasive.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (14)
All Comments   (14)
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The institution of marriage as a relation between members of the opposite sex is as old as sexually-reproducing animals, not just thousands of years, millions (or perhaps billions) of years. The birds mate male to female, for the purpose is raising families. The proponents of so-called "gay marriage" are dishonest, since any adults can live together, with or without sexual relations (except for incest), make whatever financial arrangements they want. Homosexual couples should not be given the rights of married people, e.g., to adopt children, tax benefits. etc. And yes, the Federal Government has some jurisdiction over marriage, which is why Utah could become a state only after it had outlawed polygamy.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Most parents have tenderly said something like "Do you think I told you not to do that so you wouldn't have fun, or so you wouldn't get hurt?" And the kid sobs "So...I..wouldn't...get...hurrrrrt-t". A mature Catholic understands that God's laws are like that, our loving Father tenderly telling us that you know, I made you to be happy when you live this way and not that. We can also think of His laws like an Owner's manual (Frank Sheed called it a Map of Life). So "Because God says so" is shorthand for "My loving Creator made us so that we would ultimately be happier if we do things this way, and made us so that things just won't turn out very well if we rebel against His laws, both as individuals and societies". In this post-Christian Western society, many non-Christian and nominal Christians don't understand that the consequences of disobeying His Book have the same effect on us, as rebelling against our car's owner's manual suggestions about oil changes and other maintenance, parts, etc. so we have to spell it out.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Without unity of culture, forget it. Today’s mantra is multiculturalism, which by definition is a variety of religious and moral systems roasting in an unquiet stew. No one can decide “what marriage is for” in such an environment, let alone questions of life’s purpose, the point of education, and the value of honor.

The multi-culti experiment has been a disaster. People are almost at each other’s throats NOW. Think what it will be like as the economy worsens and life gets really tough. In a misery like that, then (perhaps) even the thick-headed ignorant can “get their brains” around WHY the Emperor Theodosius closed the temples or the Spaniards threw out the Moors or why the Protestants and Catholics couldn’t live together; why so much of human history is taken up with attempts to impose cultural conformity. But we in the U.S. are throwing open the borders to true aliens from very different cultures from all over the world and puerile enough to think we can all live together peacefully. Recently the Scots inadvertently insult the Muslims by including terriers in some sporting event, and the English are discovering child sex slave rings involving members of the same religion. THAT's multi-culti in action.

And all that’s bad enough without home-growing an endless variety of the morally imbecilic, the sexually bewildered, and the perversely brazen.

This witchs' stew we're cooking up just won't over cook or boil over. It'll blow up.

An P
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Senors y Senoritas, Ladies and Gentlemen, Peeps and Peepettes, Rulers and Ruled. The time will come when a first world America will outlive its usefulness. Marx, either Groucho or Karl, I can’t remember which, maybe it was both or maybe it was Harpo, once said that America is the opiate of the people. I say that when America outlives its usefulness and becomes a majority Mexican and Central American nation , then opium…will be the opiate…Ahh that’s not a bad idea… we are going to need that badly especially when the booze runs out …

And the completely unbiased and bi-partisan panel, has determined to give the grand prize to Marco Rubio for his EARNESTY’S RAINBOW. Now EARNESTY’S RAINBOW is a token of this man’s genius…he told me so himself and repeatedly … that he could change perceptions by calling his plan for knocking down those pesky borders EARNESTY …in other words, he could have been more specific, but rather than allude to an articulation of the mundane, he has come to the conclusion that brevity is the importance of our nation’s shallow first world existence. God damn!

Marco Rubio’s and Paul Ryan's. EARNESTY’S RAINBOW – is a small contribution to a certain degree, since there are over seven billion people in the world today. 315 of them … million live in the United States which is a very, very small amount compared to those who will be miserable and enslaved and dying elsewhere…Well, I say that you will be on the road to new horizons, for we who live in a society where citizenship is a commodity and a politician can become a TV personality and very wealthy, it’s not easy to conform if you have any morality at all…I, I, I said that myself many years ago…

But I do want to thank la Raza…I mean the DNC ... I mean the Chamber of Commerce ... I mean the RNC … I mean la Raza and the DNC and the Chamber of Commerce and their wholly bought and paid for subsidiary the RNC, the organization for the $500 in donations for Central American children they’ve given out…tonight they took in over $5,000,000, but they do have expenses for their brilliant consultants you know, and I think that I have another appointment. I certainly hope so. I would like to stay here, but for the sake of brevity I, I must leave. I do want to thank you, and I want to thank the founding fathers for all the sacrifices they made however much they were in vain but now, most of all, and looking into the failure ... I mean the future .. I want to thank Marco Rubio – acting el Presidenta of Juarez la Raza Mexiamerica and Paul Ryan – acting First Lady of Juarez la Raza Mexiamerica and also Mr. Obama – acting Pharaoh and Peeping Tom ... I mean Drone Commander and Spy Master of the World – and also I want to thank Professor Irwin Corey and again, thank you. …
..


7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who wants to live in an institution? - Groucho
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
When Rubio talks about marriage, it just reminds me of how he married amnesty for millions of third world invaders.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm for smaller government. Get government OUT of marriage. Whether traditional or not. If traditional marriage is an establishment of religion, then so is any other sort of marriage. If only a jurist had grabbed this point of view and run with it.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
The history of the gay-rights movement, which was built around the objective of destroying marriage, should be discussed.

People may or may not believe in God; even if they do, that is their business. God does not make American law at the state or the federal level. But people should be able to understand that a communist-founded movement which had the destruction of marriage as one of its original objectives is not something to grant concessions to---and people who have begun to understand the Cloward-Piven strategy should be able to understand that the push for "same-sex marriage" is merely a Cloward-Piven strategy to destroy what is being allegedly sought. It is a change in tactics, not objectives.

Furthermore, people should be able to understand, if it is clearly explained, that the sole reason for pushing for same-sex marriage instead of accepting civil-union laws was to build a siege platform for attacking traditional morality and religion as "hate speech" on an equal-protection basis---a plan to gut the protections of the First Amendment without repealing it.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
"God says" isn't an argument; it's an appeal to authority designed to end argument. For those of us who are conservative but not religious, Rubio's argument is more persuasive.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
If God is God, then, in fact, this is legitimate argument. In any case, divine revelation should have a place, at least at a nominally-Christian institution. Even as a nonbeliever, I'm sure you want people speaking authentically, based on what they truly think, not merely pandering or talking down to you based on what they think that you think. I appreciate that you read the piece, and shared your view. May the Lord bless you.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
And if not, then it is not a legitimate argument.
So you have now excluded all non-believers from the concept.
(Though even if true it is still an appeal to authority so it is not a legitimate argument under any circumstances.)

Yes, divine revelation should have a place - in religion.
You however are demanding that it be the only thing given a place, with nothing else allowed to be considered, when discussing a political issue at a religious location.
As a non-Christian, I'm sure I don't want people speaking in a way that utterly excludes me and my beliefs from consideration. I don't consider an inclusive argument to be either pandering or talking down, though apparently you consider it such for Christians to have to hear something that isn't absolutely based on divine revelations you have accepted.

If the only way Christians can be approached to consider interactions with government is on a basis of divine revelation then you are inevitably going to catastrophically collide with government being barred from establishing a religion or setting any religious tests for office.
And you will create a similar inevitable catastrophe between religions who must, by extension, also only be able to interact based on divine revelation.
History, and current events, shows just how catastrophic those collisions will be.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Umm... Scott? Marriage isn't a uniquely Christian institution. If it were, my parents (Jewish) would not be married, nor would any Hindus, Sikhs, etc.

A *religious* institution, perhaps (there are arguments both ways with examples dating back to pre-Roman times), but not a Christian one. Even there, a claim of "G-d says so" meets a response of "Which one? And in which translation of which book as interpreted by whom?"
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
No, marriage is not uniquely Christian, but I referred in my response above to Catholic University, not marriage. Sorry if that wasn't entirely clear. English can be a blunt tool in the hands of a professional writer.
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
Fair enough - I had read it as "the institution of marriage"
7 weeks ago
7 weeks ago Link To Comment
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