Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Inference [Sic] Here Is That Tory MP Maurice Vellacott Is Preposterously Wrong.

Having been raised in the Roman Catholic tradition I lay claim to what I like to think is just the tiniest bit of an edge by way of insight into the langer-thick idiocy and hypocrisy at work in the religious crawthumping that tends to erupt in the matter of "gay marriage," which is a meaningless term to begin with because either it's marriage or it isn't, but nevermind that.

Only too well do I remember having been hectored in my libidinous Catholic youth about the shabby and sham institution of "civil marriage." Oh you wouldn't want to do anything like that, lad. Why Father? Well, you see, my child, to enjoin with a woman in a mere civil marriage is to place yourself and the girl in a state of sin, and think about the implications for the 17 babies you'll be wanting herself to provide you besides. A marriage commissioner officiates over a worthless and invalid institution that does not amount to a true bill of "marriage" at all. It's the genuine article you'll be wanting, my child, the proper Holy and Apostolic sacrament of marriage, so leave off this business of paying a fee to the Crown for a scrap of paper that has neither soul-perserving nor ecclesiastical value.

And thus it had come to pass down through the holy centuries that for a man and a woman to co-habit without first procuring the sacrament of marriage was to be consigned to an ash-pit of depravity, and to resort to the mere confines of a civil marriage was to engage in a delusion and a calamity so bereft of grace that the institution could be said to be fit only for homos.

But do you know what happened then? In the final years of the 20th century, those among us not given to the heterosexual persuasion but nonetheless given to some pluck and ginger began to triumph in their brave and righteous agitations not for holy matrimony but for the right to the benefit and security of civil marriage. And do you know what happened next? No quicker than you could say segregated and unconsecrated graveyards for unbaptised babies, clergymen of all stripes, not least the Roman, commenced to thunder and caterwaul about the sanctity of civil marriage, if you don't mind. Let not this institution fall, we were instructed, to the advance troops of the sinister homosexualist agenda.

One minute, that hollow, worthless and fraudulent institution was a thing we were admonished to avoid at all costs to our immortal souls. The next minute it was worth its weight in the Holy Father's toenail clippings. Suddenly it was the bedrock of our civilization. Priests were howling from the pulpits with exhortations that we protect the (utterly foreign and un-Catholic, but nevermind) institution and stand a vigilant guard against the hordes of sodomites shimmying up the very ramparts that separate all that is decent from all that is savage.

Well, the priests lost. But some geezers just don't get it.

Good news comes by way of the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal ruling that discovers to no one's surprise that like every other civilized jurisdiction in Canada, in Saskatchewan a marriage commissioner cannot resort to some weird personal or religious gimcrackery to justify a refusal to provide the benefit of the marriage law to heterosexual citizens and homosexual citizens alike. It is a straightfoward finding. But it is perplexing to Conservative MP Maurice Vellacott, who raises an objection, and has now lodged it with Justice Minister Don Morgan. Here it is:

"It’s a serious misunderstanding of Christian faith or any faith for that matter. . .the inference [sic.; he means 'implication'] here (is) you can hold these beliefs and freedom to worship just long as it doesn't affect your life or how you live out your life. And that obviously is a serious problem. It sets up a hierarchy of rights saying these same-sex rights are more important than freedom of conscience and religion."

The ruling does absolutely nothing of the kind. The Canadian people are entitled by law to enter into marriage, and whether one is queer or straight should not enter into it at all. It's that simple. Marriage commissioners who find this confusing because of their superstitions or because of their unfamiliarity with plain logic or for any other reason might want to think of taking up some other vocation, like standing on streetcorners to shout and shake bibles at passersby.

In Ontario, as a bent-over-backwards concession to dyspeptic marriage commissioners of the religious class, government policy allows such imbeciles to excuse themselves on "religious grounds" while at the same time ensuring that no "same-sex" couple is turned away. Personally, I think this is a specimen of "political correctness gone mad," but Saskatchewan might nonetheless consider a similar approach, if only to spare gay couples the indignity, on their wedding day, of having to put up with the winces of such sour-faced Jansenists as still infest the ranks of marriage commissioners in that province. In any event, the old days will soon be over. Cheer up. For those who don't like it, tough. Pay attention, PEI. You're next.

Anyway, it's going to be very quiet around here for some while as I'm getting down to the last lengths of a writing project that has consumed a great deal of my attention for too long. So for now, in the spirit of the subject of this post, and in keeping with the proposition that Canadians are equal before the law, that being queer or straight shouldn't even come into it, and in Saskatchewan the Charter of Rights and Freedoms is in operation just like anywhere else, let's recall Father Murphy's immortal words. "The ten commandments are in operation in Ballybunion just as they are anywhere else." Yes, even in Ballybunion, that den of wickedness, drink-taking and who-knows-what else:


Blogger kellie said...

Post of the year, so I'm off to bed again now. Wake me in 2012.

1:50 AM  
Blogger RuralRite said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:15 PM  
Blogger j said...

Enjoy the writing.

These are very silly people. If I want to buy a dog licence the person at the booth has to sell me one. This is not complicated.

Want to be a Marriage Commissioner? Park your "position" down the block. If not, there are other places to exercise your bigotry.

Meanwhile, Smugglers Cove is just down the street.

1:04 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home