Friday, January 21, 2005

The Axis of Stupidity: The Cardinal, Stephen Harper and Sponge Bob

It’s been a banner week for same-sex marriage in Canada. To recap:

1. Calgary’s Catholic Bishop links homosexuality with adultery, prostitution and pornography, and says the state should use its coercive power to put an end to homosexuality (Jan. 18).

2. The Globe and Mail publishes an open letter from Cardinal Aloysius Ambrozic to the Prime Minister urging him to maintain marriage as a heterosexual rite and use the Constitution’s notwithstanding clause to override the Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Jan. 19).

3. The Conservative Party of Canada announces it will launch an ad campaign against gay marriage that will target Canadian ethnic groups (Jan. 19).

4. American Christian groups protest "pro-homosexual" Sponge Bob, a cartoon character who holds hands with his animated sidekick Patrick and likes to watch a TV show called "The Adventures of Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy." (Jan. 20)

I’m sorry. You actually expect us to take you seriously? Cranking out an offensive ad campaign and making an enemy out of Sponge Bob (he’s a cartoon character for crying out loud!) does not bolster your case. It makes you a laughingstock.

Can this so-called "debate" please just go away? Seriously, it’s so over. News flash: Lots of gay people are already married, and some of them are even raising kids. The world has not come to an end.

In the end, we’re all the same really. We all shop at the same stores, drive on the same highways, work at the same offices. We all fall in love, out of love and back in love again if we’re lucky. Does it really matter who it’s with?

Same-sex marriage is a human rights issue. It couldn’t be any more black and white than a Dalmatian.

You see, societies change and evolve over time, and laws change and evolve over time to mirror the moral values of those societies. This is a good thing. Otherwise, black people would still be slaves and women would still be second-class citizens.

Anyway, we’re talking about civil marriage, not religious marriage. The Prime Minister has said no church, temple or synagogue will be forced to provide a marriage that contradicts their beliefs.

Still, the Cardinal is worried that same-sex marriage "will be teaching that homosexual activity and heterosexual activity are morally equivalent." Wait a minute. They’re not?

I’m so sick of the self-righteous, morally superior, blindly obedient Catholic attitude. I’m not spewing knee-jerk, reactionary words all over the screen either. I spent 13 years in Catholic school and went to church every Sunday until I was 18. I know a thing or two about Catholic fundamentalism.

I have read the Bible cover-to-cover. I was forced to watch a video of an abortion in religion class. I was taught "sex ed" ("sex ed" meaning "we’re not telling you a damn thing about it until you’re married") by priests and nuns. I even had anxiety attacks about confession when I was a little kid. I used to make shit up because I couldn’t think of any actual "sins" I had committed. Then I’d feel guilty about lying about my fake sins and confess that too.

Brainwashing, all of it.

In a way, I feel sorry for the Bishop and the Cardinal and Stephen Harper. I think they’re coming from a place of ignorance and fear. It can’t be easy to be that rigid.

We’ve been here before. We’ve heard the same "this will ruin society" argument when women wanted the vote, when black people wanted equal rights. It turned out okay, didn’t it? We’re all better people for it, as we will be when we give gay people the same rights as everyone else. I can’t believe this is even a debate.


Anonymous said...

I looked up the provincial Marriage Act statutes and the concept of marriage appears to me to be a legal contract between two parties (Doukhobors get some special deal but hard to say just what). It would seem that a religious definition of marriage includes the concepts of love, heterosexual relationships, procreation and all that kind of stuff in addition to the legal contract.

If the concept of loving your partner was part of the government's definition, I suspect that only those people who exhibit the qualities of Squarebob Spongepants would be in the running to get married. Sounds like a job for the Ministry of Love...

Myself: I'm just happy they brought back Battlestar Galactica.

Sarah said...

Funny how Brittney Spears can go to Vegas, get completely hammered, marry some dude, divorce said dude, get married to some dancing dude...and all that is considered to be somehow more sacred than a same-sex marriage. If anything is upsetting the social order and degrading the "sanctity" of marriage, it is the heterosexual model.

-- Sarah

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Sarah: Not much to disagree with in this particular rant either. :)

Bill D.

The Black Rose said...

Well said Sarah!

Rob Cottingham said...

Bang on. Between "Wife Swap" and Larry King, marriage needs a big infusion from the lesbian and gay communities -- if only to save its dignity.

misschief said...

you sing it sister!!!!

and while we're at it why don't we marry sponge bob and tinky winky ( the gay teletubbie) that'll show them.