Response to Andrew Bolt who says if gays marry they will encourage monogamous straights to stray (ROFL)
Andrew Bolt has had a go at my gay marriage speech in his blog today.
As far as I can see he has two points to make.
First he says that if you recognised gay unions with the title of marriage you open the door to polygamy. This is the weakest and worst sort of argument used against any change and known as the “slippery slope” argument – if first you make one change then a whole series of other changes will follow. As any lawyers reading this blog will know, judges treat arguments like this with the contempt they deserve.
But let us deal with the substance. There is no demand, no lobby, no support, no constituency for legalising polygamy under the Marriage Act. If you needed a contemporary, as opposed to a traditional or cultural, justification for not recognising polygamy it can be found in our, and most societies’, view of the equality of men and women.
Second he says that the whole purpose of marriage is a permanent relationship, that gay couples (gay men he is speaking about here) are more likely to be promiscuous and have extra-marital affairs and that therefore if gays are allowed to marry they will influence the understanding of marriage among the straights who will accordingly become more promiscuous.
This must be the longest bow of all – all those chaste and monogamous heterosexuals out there are about to become slavering, dissolute, philanderers because gay couples are according to Mr Bolt less faithful to each other than men and women.
And he wonders what I am talking about when I speak of the hypocrisy of the sanctimonious. Open your eyes, Andrew! If a heterosexual married couple want to find an example of marital infidelity, adultery, promiscuity they hardly need to look out for any gay couples they know. How many of their friends’ marriages are breaking up? How many of their friends husbands or wives are playing up?
Or they can turn on the television or open a magazine or newspaper. Where shall we start?
Take Hollywood – most of the news is about who is having an affair with whom, whose marriage is breaking up, who is getting married for the umpteenth time.
What about politics? Take Silvio Berlusconi for example, would he have been, could he have been, more promiscuous if there had been gay marriage legalised in Italy. Could he have had even more bunga bunga parties?
Finally, and speaking from my own experience, the gay couples I know who have told me they would like to have their unions recognised as a marriage have generally been together for a very long time and lead lives of demure domesticity.