Tuesday, September 13, 2005

My Big Worry

Why is it that my kids want to discuss The Meaning of Life and other Important Issues when I’m hiding in my bedroom, relaxing? DS#1 is especially good at this.

By Friday night, my brain is fried. I am ready for some mindless entertainment, which the SciFi Channel supplies to my heart’s content. DS#1 comes in and somehow the subject of gay marriage comes up. It’s a current issue, what with the California State Legislature caving to the Gay/Lesbian Lobby and approving it.

DS#1 knows I’m not in favor of it. He accuses me of hating homosexuals and believing in an outdated and intolerant religion.

I try to keep my patience. I really don’t want to discuss this with him. I really want to watch my shows. And I really don’t want to point out that his homophobic, intolerant mother (not to mention his father) is paying his college expenses, as well as providing food and shelter. That would be a cheap shot.

So I point out, again, that I do not hate homosexuals. My objection to homosexual marriage is not merely based on religion—it’s also based on biology. Marriage is not about the adults. If it were, the State would have no reason to care about what adults do in the privacy of their home. Marriage is about the children.

“What about marriages without children?” he asks, sensing a weakness in my argument.

“Maybe we should not consider those marriages, either,” I counter. That throws him for a moment.

“But marriage is about two adults who love each other!” he protests.

“That’s what you think now,” I reply. “Wait until you get married.”

We discuss biology for a bit. I point out that it takes a man and a woman to make a baby (okay, technically, it’s a sperm and an egg). There is also a certain amount of “hardwiring” in humans that have caused us to design the social structure we call “family” and we should be very careful when we propose radical changes to this structure. He makes reference to some study about lesbian monkeys that I had never heard of. I don’t ask him for specifics. I’m too tired mentally. I might Google it later. And he claims that the Supreme Court has ruled that the argument that children need a mother and a father isn’t enough because studies have “shown” that children raised by gay couples turn out normal.

“Get used to it, Mom,” he admonishes just before he leaves. “Gay marriage is a right and it’s coming whether you want it to or not.”

He’s probably correct.

He probably would be surprised that when I was his age, I would have agreed with him.
But as I’ve “grown in grace and wisdom,” I’ve found that we discard 5000 years of Judeo-Christian values at our own peril. These values have endured through the empires of Persia, Greece, and Rome. They have survived Holocaust and Communism. These are values that have stood the test of time—shouldn’t we give them some respect and serious consideration before we toss them out?

In Father Joe, Tony Hendra points out that his generation didn’t merely ignore history and tradition, they thought it was bunk and set out to refute it. Perhaps that’s an effect of being born during a major worldwide war (a subject for another day). But that feeling infected those of us who came later and is now infecting our children. I’m not sure how to inoculate my children against that particular virus. I’m not sure if I can or if each generation has to discover Holy Sophia for themselves.

But will Holy Sophia come in time?

My biggest worry, my core worry if you will, is not a nuclear holocaust or a natural disaster or a pandemic. My core worry is that we will discover that we have broken the social structure of Homo sapiens in some fundamental way—that we have shorted out our hardwiring—and that our children’s children will have to rebuild civilization from scratch.