Marriage redefined PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 05 May 2015 15:32

REFLECTION

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

US President Barack Obama came out of the closet sometime ago and announced that he is for same-sex marriage. He said that was the conclusion of his long period of “evolving.”

Many political observers, however, say that he originally was for it, then against it, then was reconsidering, and then finally is for it again. They say this flip-flopping is a reaction of a political animal to changing political conditions.

Well, we know how this stance is called in our country. “Weather-weather lang ni, bai.” To a certain extent, this attitude is valid given the temporal nature and autonomous character of politics.

But when used indiscriminately, it can enter into forbidden territory as when it is applied on matters of faith and morals, and on the fixed nature of things. And I am afraid this is what is happening in this present issue.

Marriage is not a political issue that has to be defined, and its problems resolved, solely or mainly in a political way. Marriage has a universal, immutable nature, applicable to all of us regardless of race, gender and whatever condition we may be in. When nature of things is involved, we just accept it, we don’t redefine it.

Marriage simply has to be a stable relationship between a man and a woman, because it involves a love that entails the use of sex whose primary purpose is procreation before it provides pleasure and other benefits to the couples concerned.

That’s simply the nature of sex and marriage. It is not a religious imposition, but rather a result of careful, comprehensive metaphysical study of the matter. If we pursue this study thoroughly, then we will arrive at the conclusion that marriage in itself has properties of exclusivity, unity and indissolubility.

Of course, people can have varying understanding of the nature of sex and marriage, and so we just have to undertake a continuing discussion, clarification and formation. The government should also feel the duty to do this. This is everyone’s responsibility.

But we just cannot stop at the level of “that-is-your-stand-and-this-is-mine,” since the issue at hand is not a matter of opinion or personal preferences. It binds everyone to conform to this nature of sex and marriage, in a way that should be more forceful than the binding quality of our tax and traffic laws.

Ironically, the latter laws on taxes and traffic are more strictly pursued than our marriage laws. It seems we are now having the wrong priorities, the wrong emphasis on our varied concerns.

I was shocked when I heard President Obama’s reasons for supporting same-sex marriage. They had the usual rationalizing taste of the tolerance bit. It’s a reasoning that has overreached its purpose, trying to go to a bridge too far.

This alibi about tolerance, while it has its merits, should not be the only, much less, the primary consideration to make especially in issues like marriage. There are many other more fundamental and indispensable considerations that precede it.

Obama was quoted as saying: “No matter who you love or what God you worship, you can still pursue happiness—I will support you every step of the way.”

So, if one happens to love an animal in a sexual way, he is free to marry it, and bestiality can now be elevated to the level of marriage? Or if one happens to fall in love with his own sister, or his own brother, he can also marry her or him, and incest can be marriage?

Anything is always possible with man. That’s why we need laws based on some absolute truths to guide and educate us.

Or if one happens to believe in violence and terrorism as his own God, it would just be ok? The words of Obama did not include any qualifier as to who can be the object and God of one’s love and devotion.

I may be exaggerating and blowing out of proportion Obama’s words, but these words certainly give us a direction that, in their most lenient interpretation, can be considered as potentially dangerous.

There are things that we can not and should not tamper. Marriage is one of them. Everything has to be done to strengthen it. Those who violate them, while we always have to be charitable and fair, should be dealt with clearly, and even strongly.

I have no problem with gays. I know many of them and they are excellent persons, workers and friends. But let’s not call what is wrong, right, and bad, good, just because we are friends.