Following new government plans for gay marriage, Catholic commentators have crawled out of the woodwork to bitch and moan to anyone who’ll listen, despite the fact that marriage has been around for far longer than the Catholic Church and it has only taken on a strongly religious context after the Church spotted the money-making opportunities in the 12th Century.
Cardinal Keith O’Brien called the plans a “grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right” and went on to say that “It would create a society which deliberately chooses to deprive a child of either a mother or a father“. (N.B. O’Brien’s claims about gay marriage breaching human rights stem from a misinterpretation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
O’Brien’s comments were described as “a bit rich” by Paolo Viscardi, who went on to say “The need for both a father and mother is a biological one that ends with conception. Further, a human right is only meaningful when enforceable, yet the loss of a parent or parents is impossible to prevent in many instances, thereby making the ‘right’ for a child to have both a mother and father meaningless”.
Viscardi went on to say “There is no reason to suppose that a loving same-sex couple would fail in their care of children – indeed I believe they would do a far better job than, for example, a Catholic orphanage. O’Brien should check John 8:7. Members of the Catholic clergy have committed a host of human rights abuses against children and such abuse has been endemic in parts of the Catholic Church. O’Brien may have apologised for such abuses in the past, but to claim that the loving union of a same-sex couple is an abuse of human rights twists the meaning of that section of the Declaration of Human Rights and it throws the self-deluded sense of sexual morality held by the Catholic clergy into stark relief.”
*Notably, more priests have stepped up to condemn gay marriage than have gone on record condemning child abuse by members of the Catholic clergy. The Irish Cardinal Jack Hackett, suggested that this was because many priests believe that “Sex is a sin unless it is intended to bring forth new life in the agonies of the woman as God intended. By abusing children the Catholic clergy are teaching them that sex is a dirty business that causes great suffering.”
Cardinal Jack Hackett finished by saying “Gays have too much fun to get married. Marriage is not about having fun, it’s about having babies and being miserable for the glory of God“.
*N.B. This last section may not be entirely true, but it paraphrases the jist of several arguments I’ve heard in the past.
If you disagree with the Catholic Church’s stance on gay marriage, and if you live in the UK, perhaps you would like to sign the Coalition For Equal Marriage’s petition to show your support.