1/ 26/ 10

Those who argue against the recognition or existence of homosexual marriage often claim that the problem with it is that the marriage cannot be fruitful. Homosexuals, it is said, cannot marry because they cannot procreate with each other. A better argument would be to say that homosexuals cannot marry because they cannot consummate their marriage. Consummation is a kind of union, and union requires more than person X to have some part of himself in person Y. At any rate, there’s no dispute that sexual activity is not the same thing as sexual union- though much of our talk about sex fails to clearly distinguish the one from the other.

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6 Comments

  1. onus probandi said,

    January 26, 2010 at 4:46 pm

    “A better argument would be to say that homosexuals cannot marry because they cannot consummate their marriage.”

    I believe this too would fail; this argument can be easily attacked when you take into consideration men who are impotent and likewise are incapable of doing same.

  2. danielj said,

    January 26, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    Wouldn’t the Thomist reply that two males are metaphysically incapable while the impotent man is just an imperfect instantiation and therefore not representative?

  3. January 26, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    Onus,

    They can’t get married either. I don’t even think there is controversy over this. Both ecclesiastical and civil marriages are considered void without consummation, and always have been.

    There is a bit of nuance to the meaning of impotence. St. Thomas explains here:

    http://www.newadvent.org/summa/5058.htm#article1

  4. Martin T. said,

    January 26, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    Here, I think sheer ignorance wins as I contemplate explaining this to the people at my workplace. I envision the blank stares and the reply, “And whatever does that have to do with being married”?

    Oh forget the people I work with, they are quite capable of normal reasoning. Let’s drive 25 miles east into the District of Columbia where the Elctorial Board backed by the local judges has ruled that a petition for a ballot on same sex marriage is illegal because, “you do not vote on a civil rights issue”.
    Logic has nothing to do with it.

  5. January 26, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    In addition to reasoning with rational people, you have to speak with real pols, write newspaper eds, deal with crazies, suffer through the irrationality of actual people. My arguments and posts are written for the very small group of people that open this web page. Pretty insulated. As soon as I take one step off this very small island all this “reasoning” I talk about has no purchase. We agree on that.

  6. Am. said,

    January 27, 2010 at 4:23 am

    “My arguments and posts are written for the very small group of people that open this web page.”

    I found your web page accidentally and I think it’s great and you’re doing a great job. But still I don’t know, why have you been doing it for so many years?


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