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Travis Rowley: Gay Marriage is a Sham

Saturday, January 05, 2013


The consequences of silence were on parade this week when Channel 10 aired a report titled “Same-Sex Marriage Could Help RI Economy.” The premise for saying so is that many people, while decidedly against the passage of a gay marriage bill, have been entirely bullied out of the controversy – and that this has resulted in a growing confusion over how to even begin defending traditional values.

Of course, it follows that there has been a growing acceptance of one of the silliest ideas to ever manifest itself – gay marriage.

Bishop Tobin, House Speaker Gordon Fox, the president of Bishop Hendricken, the owner of Chick-Fil-A, Miss California 2009, and Brad Pitt’s mom are only a few who have recently suffered the viciousness of the programmed progressive response to anyone who dares to challenge the Left on this issue.

America is going to get gay marriage. And not merely because upcoming generations have been trained to believe in the righteousness of the cause, but largely because of the bullish political demeanor of gay marriage advocates. These are not nice people.

The Channel 10 Story

The overarching message behind Channel 10’s report was that “Newport businesses say legalizing same-sex marriage in Rhode Island could bring economic benefits.” Being an “international wedding destination,” the legalization of gay marriage would cause the city to experience even more economic activity associated with the marriage industry.

Only a media outlet under the spell of the progressive worldview could report such a ridiculous story, one that is fraught with glaring curiosities that were never investigated; a story that arrives on the eve of a controversial vote on gay marriage; and a story that offers – oh so conveniently – cover to any legislator still considering a nay vote.

Yes, I voted for gay marriage. But only to give the economy a jolt! Please, please re-elect me.

It just never occurred to Channel 10 to wonder why homosexuals have been holding out on getting married in the first place (if they truly have been). This question would have served to raise the point that these economic activities – ceremonies and receptions – have nothing to do with the government sanction of same-sex unions.

What has ever stopped gay people from hosting a wedding celebration in Newport?

Channel 10’s story was a clear derivative of a leading misconception advanced by gay marriage advocates – that is, that gays “aren’t allowed to marry who they want to marry.” It is with great frequency that callers to talk radio point to the “hypocrisy” of small-government conservatives who suddenly want to “tell others how to live their lives” when it comes to gay marriage.

This is the delusion that results when liberals are the only ones who are allowed to speak.

The Argument

The fact of the matter is that the case against gay marriage has nothing to do with outlawing homosexual rituals and celebrations. Despite what progressives would have people believe, nobody is in favor of having the FBI bust in to the Viking Hotel while two men take things to the next level.

The opposition to same-sex marriage has always been about what marriage truly is, just how vital it is to the shape and survival of a free society, and the fact that there has yet to be provided a compelling reason to alter its longstanding definition – let alone risk the unforeseen consequences of establishing such a precedent. Furthermore, should taxpaying citizens be forced to not only accept – but also subsidize – such relationships? And what might the consequences be of injecting the concept of same-sex marriage into American culture?

These are the precepts that are conspicuously absent from Channel 10’s story.

Another is that marriage existed well before the United States government. It follows that, just because the government has found it prudent to involve itself with marriage (as it unfortunately does with so many other things), this hardly amounts to unjust “discrimination” or a “violation of civil rights.”

Home ownership is also an institution that people have taken part in long before the establishment of the US government. Do tax breaks for homeowners infringe upon the civil rights of those who choose to rent apartments?

I didn’t decide to rent! I was born this way!

Newsflash for Progressives: The very nature of government is to discriminate. If you have a problem with that – that is, if you wish to limit the government’s authority to discriminate – then become a libertarian. Join the Tea Party!

But progressives won’t do that. Instead, their fickle philosophy instructs them to argue that renting is – somehow – the same as owning.

Per usual, progressives have framed the issue of same-sex marriage as a battle between good and evil – enlightened liberals raging against “hateful” religious fanatics. This intellectual and moral superiority that progressives bestow upon themselves is what ultimately justifies all their acts of thuggery and indecency on the road to “progress.” This is the elitism that authorizes the Left’s political intimidation, and it’s also the mentality that has considered it justified to sidestep legislatures in favor of having the judiciary thrust gay marriage onto objecting populations.

Yes, it is the Left that has – once again – utilized the force of government. Yet, amazingly, they have convinced millions that conservatives are the tyrants and fascists when it comes to the issue of same-sex marriage.

A Disingenuous Cause

In order to buttress their efforts, progressives are finally telling us what benefit there is to the state for acknowledging these same-sex relationships: There will be a boon to the economy!

Ah, yes. The saving economic grace of homosexual weddings.

But are we really to believe that the state’s homosexuals have been intentionally holding the economy hostage all these years, refusing to host lavish weddings until the General Assembly comes to its senses?

And if that is not the case, are we to believe that homosexuals have truly been unaware that they could get “married” even while the state wasn’t recognizing their relationships?

These are the types of curiosities that are never spoken by a media that reflects the sentiments of a pop culture that is void of a traditional voice. Yet, these are also the questions that would help to reveal the fact that the controversy over same-sex marriage has little to do with “equality” – or even marriage.

There has always been something entirely insincere about the crusade for gay marriage – always a hint that the issue was more political than authentic. Gays and lesbians posing for the press at their wedding ceremonies always seemed to be more staged than genuine; more like activists than brides and grooms. Why were they smiling so brightly? Because it was their wedding day? Or because their neighbors were now being forced to accept them? Was this marital bliss? Or victory?

If gay marriage is truly about economic equality, why was the passage of civil unions last year considered to be unsatisfactory to progressive activists?

It’s because this is more of a moral crusade for the Left than it is for the Right. This is about the acceptance of a lifestyle (and, at least on some level, the tearing down of another). The advocates of same-sex marriage want the word “marriage” – and nothing less. Until then, they argue, gays will remain “second-class citizens.”

Yet another leftist mission grounded in feelings rather than history, logic, debate, and reason.

Gay marriage should be seen for what it truly is, the quintessential progressive issue – fueled primarily by emotion, politics, media bias, lies, and intimidation.

The silence from traditionalists has sadly resulted in their own moral uncertainty, served to expand apathy within millions of others, and amplified a pre-existing media ignorance for reporters who are bringing us the images of our new world.

Travis Rowley (TravisRowley.com) is the author of The RI Republican: An Indictment of the Rhode Island Left.


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great, GREAT article!

Comment #1 by Jared D on 2013 01 05

Isn't it true that Civil Unions allowed gay couples to register for all of the economic benefits of married couples? But the state wouldn't call them "married">>>>Why wasn't this good enough?

Comment #2 by Bryan Sullivan on 2013 01 05

any progressives out there? Don't want to touch this one, do you?

Comment #3 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2013 01 05

lol jeremy!

Comment #4 by Jared D on 2013 01 05

I think this has to be one of Travis’s most ludicrous columns. He has basically three arguments against gay marriage, each dumber than the last:

First, he argues that legalizing same-sex marriage has no effect on the incidence of marriage, because same-sex couples could just hold marriage ceremonies anyway. This is patently absurd. Whenever marriage equality legislation is passed, there is an explosion in the rate of same-sex marriage ceremonies. It also assumes that marriage is just about a ceremony, which is also dumb.

The next argument is even sillier: that because progressives are supposedly okay with homestead exemptions, which discriminate against renters, they must be okay with all government discrimination. What makes this argument so ridiculous is not just that there’s a real difference between discrimination based off who you are and discrimination based off what you choose to do. It’s also absurd because progressives do oppose tax discrimination against renters.

The final argument is that the case for same-sex marriage is a moral crusade for equality, and that somehow this is a bad thing. Of course it is a moral crusade for equality. Why Travis believes equality for all is not a good idea remains unstated. Indeed, conservatives have always maintained that they do believe in equality for LGBT Americans, but that marriage somehow has nothing to do with equality. Travis abandons that pretense. He confirms what we all already knew--that conservative opposition to marriage is about discrimination pure and simple.

Comment #5 by Samuel Bell on 2013 01 05

Samuel, You know what's "dumb"?? Claiming that gay marriage will save the RI economy. Pff!

The rest of your argument (thanks for actually making one by the way) can be discounted by acknowledging the difference between the way the right and left perceive marriage. The right sees it as a union b/w a man and a woman for the purposes of raising children and perpetuating society. The left sees it as a union b/w any two people. Once you acknowledge how the right perceives marriage (that it has a longstanding definition that "existed before the US govt") all of Rowley's points make more sense (even the home owners vs renters stuff)

Unfortunately for you, Rowley is right. "Marriage" has a definition. Progressives can't get around the fact that they're trying to redefine a word.

Your last point sort of misses the point. Yes, Rowley acknowledges "discrimination" but also claims that "discrimination" isn't necessarily a bad thing, that it is in govt's nature to discriminate. which basically pointed out the absurdity of the left's claim that gays are victims of discrimination. And then he explains that gay marriage isn't really a crusade for equality, but a crusade for "acceptance"...And he did a pretty good job of proving that that is so.

Comment #6 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2013 01 05

S. Bell---"First, he argues that legalizing same-sex marriage has no effect on the incidence of marriage, because same-sex couples could just hold marriage ceremonies anyway. This is patently absurd. Whenever marriage equality legislation is passed, there is an explosion in the rate of same-sex marriage ceremonies. It also assumes that marriage is just about a ceremony, which is also dumb."

An "explosion" of gay marriages? Why is this? And do they suddenly die out? As travis states, people were getting married before the US govt. So marriage IS "just a ceremony" really, if what you mean is that it is a cultural practice that has nothing to do w/ the government.

So why were gays waiting around? Are these political marriage ceremonies? Celebratory marriages? I thought that was interesting how travis pointed out the political atmosphere surrounding gay marriages that we've all seen on the front-page of the newspaper.

Comment #7 by Bryan Sullivan on 2013 01 05

Excellent argument Travis. I cant tell you how I enjoy reading your thoughts each week. You have always demonstrated that the Republican party stands for the American way of life and that, once and a while, someone with an intellectually superior mindset needs to enlighten the masses. Unfortunately, this same exact argument has been used in the past on other issues. Although it may makes sense to true "patriots" who really don't have an extensive grasp on the constitution, this argument is flawed in reason, law and logic. Read the case of Loving v. Virginia and get back to me. You are better than this Travis.

Comment #8 by Petr Petrovich on 2013 01 05

Well, I see that liberals are still attempting to equate interracial marriage with homosexual marriage. Nice try, Mr. Petrovich.

Another great read, Mr. Rowley. Thank you.

Comment #9 by William Suffik on 2013 01 05

Gay "marriage" is not marriage at all. They shouldn't be prevented from doing what they want in private and they shouldn't be penalized financially for their unions, but to make it the equivalent of a religious sacrament when it is expressly forbidden in the Bible is ridiculous.

Comment #10 by Bernie McCrink on 2013 01 05

I am not equating, merely pointing out the similiarities between the two arguments. If there is a difference, I am all ears. Travis could be the future of tis party, but I get sad when he formulates arguments of this nature. he needs to get creative and think outside the box. If he continues in this manner,he is going to make the most basic mistake of any business; He will continue to get an increasing share of a shrinking market. I am sincerly interested in what he has to say, so dont get frustrated. Just convince me why one person can receive a benefit, while another cannot. Please dont use the sacrement thing or the traditional values thing. If you cannot formulate something creative just call me a name. I will understand.

Comment #11 by Petr Petrovich on 2013 01 05

"Unfortunately, this same exact argument has been used in the past on other issues."

I call that "equating."

I believe Mr. Rowley would agree with you that this is a losing issue. After all, he begins by saying that America is going to "get gay marriage." I don't think he's attempting to fight it, or speak for the GOP here. I think this article is explaining WHY we're going to get gay marriage.

Comment #12 by William Suffik on 2013 01 05

Oh, to answer your question, the difference between laws that ban interracial marriage and homosexual marriage is that interracial marriage still commands the presence of a man and woman - which fits the context and definition of the definition of marriage in the Western sense of the word. Plain and Simple.

Comment #13 by William Suffik on 2013 01 05

Whatever happens with legalizing gay marriage, it sure will be interesting to witness the strange brew of liberalism and Catholicism that make up the mindset of so many in this state slosh about. Talk about inner turmoil and conflict!

Comment #14 by Art West on 2013 01 05

This article is so bigoted it's unbelievable. No wonder everyone hates the Republican party that has you as a spokesman!

Perhaps you should look towards more reasonable Republicans like Sen Hodgson and that girl at the national convention (Fenton I think?) who are compassionate and, as I understand their positions, advocate for civil unions for all in the eyes of the government, thereby keeping rights equal for all. I believe that girl has actually been very vocal about saying marriage is a religious sacrament, and therefore should stay in the churches. Isn't that the libertarian stance anyways? Less government interference?

Comment #15 by Randall Spazniak on 2013 01 05

I like theatre of the absurd. I even like writing of the absurd. This, ah, article is an excellent example of total absurdity, in it’s finest. There are several fallacies being promoted here. That marriage is a purely religious ritual that should be reserved for heterosexual couples only, is just one of them.

Conservatives would have everyone believe that marriage is rightly reserved for heterosexual couples only, as an act necessary to perpetuate the human species. The human species needs no such help. According to the Supreme Court in Loving vs. Virginia, marriage is a basic constitutional right, not something to be reserved for only those that meet with the approval of some committee.

There is no credible evidence to show that allowing gay marriages to take place will in any way threaten the structure of the family unit. Divorce is a larger threat to the family than gay marriage could ever be. Take a close look at the large number of serial divorcees among the wealthy conservatives.

Travis’ claim that gay couples are free to marry anyone they wish is absurd, since the federal government would not recognize those marriages at this time, anyway. Most states will not recognize gay marriage, giving those couples no legal benefits. Government benefits from marriage are only available to heterosexual couples; this is an example of unequal treatment under the law.

There is evidence to support the notion that gay marriage has boosted the economies of states and nations that have chosen to recognize them. Recently, the state of New York reported a marked increase in hiring in the marriage industry to support the increased demand. More people spending money and getting married, means that more people are getting jobs. That is an increase in the economy of that area.

If a large group of people has more political power than a smaller group, disapproves of that smaller group, and uses that power to deny that smaller group their equal rights under the law, that is tyranny of the majority. Slavery is an excellent example of tyranny of the majority that was done away with in this country. Slavery was an evil institution that was once supported by the same kind of conservatives that would deny marriage equality to the gay community today.

Travis argues that we gays are using thuggish tactics against anyone that oppose us in our struggle for marriage equality. I can see how he would feel that way, given that he’s one of those on the receiving end of our efforts to gain our basic civil rights. He does not like what we have to say. Fair enough.

What about the large numbers of gays that are hunted down and beaten by so called religious conservatives for nothing more than holding hands while walking down the street? What gives them the right to do that?

Comment #16 by Chutney Grey on 2013 01 06

I would like to make three points in support of Mr. Rowley’s article.

1. “There has always been something entirely insincere about the crusade for gay marriage – always a hint that the issue was more political than authentic. Gays and lesbians posing for the press at their wedding ceremonies always seemed to be more staged than genuine; more like activists than brides and grooms. Why were they smiling so brightly? Because it was their wedding day? Or because their neighbors were now being forced to accept them? Was this marital bliss? Or victory?”

This is perhaps the best and most compelling argument against gay marriage I have heard in a long time. We tend to forget that marriage is about two people (one man and one woman) who are in love and who are divinely called together to serve and honor God in a committed relationship. It is not a political institution, but a religious one. I do not doubt that two men or two women can love each other, but it does seem that often homosexual couples get more satisfaction in changing laws and in getting states to recognize their marital status then they do in marrying their significant other. If they truly love one another then that love should be fulfilling enough, and they shouldn’t worry about technicalities like laws. One’s love for someone should not be dependent on the law of the land (or state), but rather dependent on each other.

2. “…marriage existed well before the United States government.”

To bring this quote a step further, marriage existed before any government, in history. No person or government is credited with “inventing” marriage. No one said “What if we allow two people to sort of build their lives together. And we could give them tax breaks and benefits if they do certain things or have children, you know contribute to the economy.” It existed long before political parties and governments. That is because marriage was not defined by man, it was defined by God, our creator. It exists, first and foremost, for religious purposes, to serve God and to bring children into the world in a loving and nurturing environment. (I know, I know; heterosexual married couples haven’t always done the institution of marriage justice, that is certainly true, but it is not justification for allowing homosexuals to marry) The political aspects of marriage came much later, as an add on to the already existing institution. That is why no man (or woman) has the right to redefine it, because it comes from God not from man.

3. Randall Spaznik – “This article is so bigoted it's unbelievable. No wonder everyone hates the Republican party that has you as a spokesman!”

I must admit I was surprised there were not more comments on this article with this type of hateful speech. It took a while but we finally got one. It is perhaps my biggest pet peeve that people can’t fathom the idea of someone disagreeing with or not supporting an issue without being a racist, bigot, homophobic, or whatever other insults you want to throw out there. I have the utmost respect for all people, including homosexuals, and do not look down upon them or see them as anything less than dignified human beings who should be treated with as much respect as anyone else. And Mr. Rowley’s article gives me no reason to believe that, despite his disagreements, he does not feel the same way. However, I do have a respectful moral objection to the homosexual lifestyle and to the notion of gay marriage. So leave the insults out, they are unnecessary and unfounded.

Comment #17 by Ned Isakoff on 2013 01 06

You see, it's arguments like this that take away from discussing real issues. Who could possibly care if two people of the same sex get married? How does that affect your life or mine? Let me answer that for you, it doesn't. When we have to talk about insipid things like this we don't talk about the debt or the NDAA taking away our freedoms,or a whole host of things that are more important than what two consenting adults do in the privacy of their homes. These are the things that are ruining the conservative movement in this country.

Comment #18 by Mark Bedrosian on 2013 01 06

Mark - they are not doing it in the privacy of their own home, that's the point; if that was the case you'd be right, no one would or should care. They are making it a societal issue by trying to change the definition of marriage. The problem is we do not understand the root cause of the problems in our world today. The break down of the family unit has, in large part, led to the economic decline of our society. When families suffer our society suffers. When young people do not have a balanced upbringing and are not instilled with a moral understanding of right and wrong and common decency, and instead are infiltrated with left wing propaganda every day by our public education system and our media coupled with the increasing societal notion that God doesn't matter or belong in the public realm, and are told do what feels good and don't worry about the consequences, then we continue to see a decline in their moral character as they become adults - and then they don't end up not caring about the debt or the NDAA.

Comment #19 by Ned Isakoff on 2013 01 06

"...a person in a civil union in Rhode Island "could be denied the right to make medical decisions for his or her partner, denied access to health insurance benefits, denied property rights in adjoining burial plots or denied family memberships at religiously-affiliated community centers." These are crucial rights that heterosexual couples automatically receive, and to allow those rights to be denied to gay couples for any reason is unjust. By shunning this law, the Rhode Island gay community has shown it will not legitimize a discriminatory concession to true first-class citizenship."

The Brown Daily Herald

Comment #20 by Jonathan Jacobs on 2013 01 07

Furthermore, where in Rhode Island's state constitution does it prohibit same sex marriage? Why should your God infringe upon the rights of another? Does an atheist or secular humanist or Buddhist or Shinto or Muslim or Jew not have the same rights as a Christian? There was a time when people protested integration and inter-racial marriage. Was that the right side of history? Finally, how would allowing same sex marriage of two consenting adults hurt Rhode Island's economy? Or is this just another one of Mr. Rowley's Limbaughesque, anti-progressive rants in order to fill his editors' monthly quota of hate-mongering? My wife and I were married on the steps of the Rhode Island State House and there was no mention of God. We believed in a promise and we believe in community in a true sense. We do not exclude others based on what they do not offer. Rather we embrace people into our lives and family based upon what they can bring. Now we do our best to pass that message down to our daughter. And we keep our promise to one another. If our daughter grows up and falls in love with a man or a woman or whoever, we do not want to tell her, “mommy and daddy were on the wrong side of history so, as a result, you don't have the same rights as we do.”

Comment #21 by Jonathan Jacobs on 2013 01 07

So often, just as Jonathan Jacobs has done here, progressives bring up the religious aspect of marriage while the conservative has not. Rowley argues purely from a secular perspective here. Rowley is RIGHT----Progressives are so brainwashed by the media. They really think that the conservative argument is dependent on the Bible -- so much so that Jacobs is arguing against something Rowley never said.

Comment #22 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2013 01 07

Ned Isakoff DID bring up religious precedent as a lengthy affirmation to what Rowley proposed. My message was one of community building and conflict resolution as opposed to further divisive disenfranchisement based on an argument that, because same sex marriage legislation will not solve Rhode Island's economic crisis, it's not worth the equal rights discussion. So, Jeremy, if scriptural precedent is not the reason behind the conservative argument against queer culture having equal rights under the law, what is? There is nothing in the Rhode Island constitutional language speaking about same sex marriage. That's a fact. That's not "brainwashing."

Comment #23 by Jonathan Jacobs on 2013 01 07

There are purely secular arguments against gay marriage. Travis Rowley makes one above. Only the brainwashed think that it's a religious argument.

By the way, not that I believe "religious" arguments should be discounted. What is a "religion" anyway? Many great and moral movements have been based on Scripture >>>>> FREEDOM, ABOLITION, INTEGRATION...just to name a few. For those of us who are informed, we get a big laugh out of modern "progressives" try and tell us that Christianity should have no part in the public square.

Comment #24 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2013 01 08

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