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12 reasons why gay marriage is wrong

  1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control.
  2. Heterosexual marriages are valid because they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can’t legally get married because the world needs more children.
  3. Obviously, gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.
  4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage is allowed, since Britney Spears’ 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.
  5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and hasn’t changed at all; women are property, blacks can’t marry whites, and divorce is illegal.
  6. Gay marriage should be decided by people, not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.
  7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That’s why we have only one religion in America.
  8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.
  9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.
  10. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That’s why single parents are forbidden to raise children.
  11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven’t adapted to things like cars or longer life-spans.
  12. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because a “separate but equal” institution is always constitutional. Separate schools for African-Americans worked just as well as separate marriages for gays and lesbians will.

via: TheDailyWhat


  1. R.O. Flyer wrote:


    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Permalink
  2. Cortney wrote:

    This just made my day.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Permalink
  3. Andrew wrote:

    I’ve already got the tropical island picked out for when the legislation passes. . .

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 4:03 pm | Permalink
  4. Theophilus wrote:

    Very nice. Here’s a real kneeslapper from the other side… Temple Prostitution!

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 4:25 pm | Permalink
  5. Gabby wrote:

    Excellent! :) at first I thought it was serious, but shortly realized it was quite sarcastic. Thanks :D

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Permalink
  6. James Page wrote:

    I wonder if you might spell out for me when we began to extend the core and indisputable part of our person as including a particular sexual desire? Are there not all sorts of desires that should not be affirmed?

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Permalink
  7. Halden wrote:

    I don’t know, when did we?

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:07 pm | Permalink
  8. James Page wrote:

    This post just seems to find sexual desire to be as much a given as one’s skin color and so judgement against it is ruled out by virtue of the black/gay equation. I’m just not yet sold that things are that straightforward that’s all.

    I understand this is a satirical post so I don’t want to transgress genre but the argument seems to be one that takes a liberal “rights” paradigm as the fundamental arbiter of identity and personhood. Do you have something that might be a bit more Scriptural for me to think on? I’m being genuine by the way.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:15 pm | Permalink
  9. Halden wrote:

    I reproduced this little list simply because I thought it was funny. It serves no purpose other than that.

    Since you ask, I’ve written some other stuff about homosexuality here and here, though personally I remain deeply ambivalent about this issue in the context of the Christian faith. So, I want to make the disclaimer that I wrote these nearly three years ago, and would need to think long and hard about what I would say if I wrote them today.

    I do, however continue to believe that Christians should not view marriage or genital sexual activity to be the apex, or even a central part of “self-fulfillment.” But most gay Christian’s I’ve known don’t think that either.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:19 pm | Permalink
  10. Steven D wrote:

    #3 is made my day. Haha, nice post, Halden.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:20 pm | Permalink
  11. James Page wrote:

    Thanks, those posts line up pretty much with my own sense of confusion about the issue.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Permalink
  12. We are missing the texts from the OT that command us to stone homosexuals. Since we stone people for other sins,such as breaking the sabbath, we need to be consistent.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Permalink
  13. Dan wrote:

    It is worth noting though that the same argument could be made about religion.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 9:10 pm | Permalink
  14. Hill wrote:

    This sounds awesome

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 9:37 pm | Permalink
  15. dan wrote:

    Hey Halden,

    I was wondering if your views on homosexuality have changed since we disagreed on the subject back in the day. Perhaps you would be interested in writing a post detailing where you currently stand? I’d be curious to know, but I like the trajectory your writing appears to be taking.

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010 at 11:19 pm | Permalink
  16. Kampen wrote:

    Mmm, satire.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:00 am | Permalink
  17. roger flyer wrote:

    Halden, I appreciate you saying– “personally I remain deeply ambivalent about this issue in the context of the Christian faith.” Honestly, I don’t know how a reflective Christian can feel anything but ambivalence about the issue.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 5:23 am | Permalink
  18. dan wrote:

    I used to feel ambivalence about ‘the issue’ but I don’t anymore… and I know a good many reflective Christians who have traveled a similar road. Ambivalence is but one step leading us out of oppressive and anti-Christian mentalities that have been pounded into us (and, be it note, this ambivalence still often functions in an oppressive manner — despite the good intentions and the sensitivities of the one who feels it).

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 6:51 am | Permalink
  19. Matt wrote:

    I find it highly offensive that gay people are compared to polyester, which is clearly a heterosexual fabric.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:00 am | Permalink
  20. Chris Donato wrote:

    To my mind, state-recognized marriages are the state’s business, and insofar as the rights of others aren’t being impinged upon, so be it. Dan’s right: ambivalence can be quite oppressive.

    But personally I think practicing homosexuality is totally bass ackwards—just like a whole host of other human actions.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:15 am | Permalink
  21. James wrote:

    There are so many category mistakes in that list I don’t know where to begin!

    Surely there are better ways of making the case for gay marriage than this, else whence the ambivalence?

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:21 am | Permalink
  22. david wrote:

    I’d like to agree with you there, but it seems to me that this would mean ignoring some fairly stark comments by St Paul regarding homosexuality. I find it very hard to believe that he was wrong in this respect. I’m not sure that I totally know why he was right, but I am sure that his “wrongness” is righter than my rightness in this respect.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:23 am | Permalink
  23. Aric Clark wrote:

    You mean Paul’s comments about idolatry in Romans? Maybe St. Paul’s mysoginist tendencies were also righter than our rightness.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:23 am | Permalink
  24. Aric Clark wrote:

    Anytime someone says a phrase like “I don’t know how a reflective Christian could…” they inevitably follow it with a synonym for “think/act just like me!” Intelligent, faithful people can indeed disagree without being ‘unreflective’. Try to imagine it.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:26 am | Permalink
  25. roger flyer wrote:

    Point taken. I retract the word reflective.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:38 am | Permalink
  26. roger flyer wrote:

    James-I felt the same way. The categorical mistakes were stupid and it wasn’t funny.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:40 am | Permalink
  27. roger flyer wrote:

    My agreement is with the word ambivalent. How about you?

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:41 am | Permalink
  28. Aric Clark wrote:

    I am not ambivalent. Homosexuality isn’t a disease or a disorder. It isn’t intrinsically harmful in any way that heterosexuality is not also. It isn’t socially harmful either. Children raised in a loving homosexual home are indistinguishable from those raised in a heterosexual one. I personally know homosexuals called into ministry who are astonishingly virtuous practitioners of their faith. There are just no good reasons to discriminate.

    As for scriptural witness. The Bible says more objectionable things about slavery, war, genocide, family relations, parenting and judicial punishment which I have also rejected as inconsistent with the character of God revealed in Jesus Christ. Why would homosexuality be different?

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:58 am | Permalink
  29. Gabby wrote:

    I found this HIGHLY amusing; more so, I find all of you amusing. :)

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:03 am | Permalink
  30. Gabby wrote:

    Especially you Matt.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:09 am | Permalink
  31. R.O. Flyer wrote:

    That part was, I’m afraid, completely out of line.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:49 am | Permalink
  32. adhunt wrote:

    It’s unsettling to me how easily the “oppressed” vs “oppressor” can be used to marginalize theologians and Christians who support their received Tradition in matters pertaining to sexual expression and personhood (or anything for that matter).

    The “liberative” part of the Gospel is used glibly to support many things unthinkingly. We become “liberated” to be conformed to Christ. Now whether this means we should shift our understanding of sexuality is surely open to debate, but “freedom” is not a word with a predetermined and unchallengable meaning.

    It is on those who would deviate from Tradition to demonstrate their position from Scripture. Some sociological debunking of naive assumptions concerning marriage hardly amounts to such.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 10:31 am | Permalink
  33. dan wrote:

    It should be unsettling to you, given that much of the ‘received Tradition’ is oppressive. And it is just as much on those who hold to their ‘Tradition’ to demonstrate how that ‘Tradition’ is faithful to Scripture.

    Anyway, I’ve talked elsewhere about these things in relation to Scripture, so I won’t repeat myself here (cf. and here: ).

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:08 pm | Permalink
  34. adhunt wrote:

    Well you told me. Listen, I’m in the Episcopal Church, I’m up to my ears in “prophets” so you can keep right on raging against the tradition straight into being a liberal protestant for all I care. Your posts make decent points but it doesn’t change the fact that your rhetoric is designed to shut off mutual challenge and growth.

    There is something so easy about being for innovative sexuality when one is, as we are, in the affluent West. We get the freedom to be obsessed by phalics.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Permalink
  35. Aric Clark wrote:

    Christians who “support their received Tradition” are anything but marginalized. It stretches the term beyond recognition to suggest that the vast majority of the largest religious organizations in the world, including virtually all those in positions of authority, are marginalized. Criticized? Perhaps. And rightly so.

    Tradition isn’t a monolith. Even inside an individual stream of the Church it is varied and flexible. Furthemore, no one passively “receives” Tradition. Tradition has to be carried on; actively (and selectively) reinterpreted, promulgated, and debated. Saying “we’ve always done it such and such a way” is an utterly inadequate defense because a) it is simply not true (there is nothing we have always done) and b) it is beside the point in the face of an ethical critique. We have always waged wars. We should stop that too.

    There is not liberative “part” of the Gospel. The Gospel IS liberative. Sure there is content to that liberation. Agreed. I am not saying do anything you want (I just said in the previous paragraph that we should stop waging war). I am saying there is nothing in the character of Christ which would prohibit homosexuality.

    It is on all of us always to demonstrate that our lives are consistent with the character of Christ. No one gets to claim the safe enclave of Tradition to hide from moral criticism. That is the trajectory of the pharisee. And the case for acceptance of homosexuality is not confined to “some sociological debunking of naive assumptions concerning marriage”. It is, rather, a thorough and utter demolition on sociological, scientific, ethical, and I would say theological grounds of the paltry case against homosexuality.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Permalink
  36. adhunt wrote:

    “Marginalization” is a relative term. As is “Tradition,” which is why I said “received.” I, as a Pentecostal turned Anglican, live in a body with a “recieved” Tradition that perhaps you do not have. I’m quite aware of varieties in Church streams. In my own church, Traditionalists are actually marginalized (especially after all the conservatives have left).

    In point of fact you don’t even know where I “stand” on “the issue.” I merely think that there is a strong naiveity in maintaining, as some do, that we can or even do or should “start over” again every generation as it were with a new confession “tested against Scripture.” In most cases this has led to a glorification of theological novelty and unfaithfulness.

    And, as I said, sure the “Gospel” is “liberative,” but it “liberates” us to be conformed, not to have our “inner selves” free to be affirmed. But whatever, I’m not even talking about homosexuality as needing to be or not be blessed per se. I get pissed when innovators act as if it is obvious.

    There were always prophets in Israel, it took time, testing, and imagination to sift the ones who were “really” from YHWH.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Permalink
  37. Halden wrote:

    Dan, maybe sometime I will write such a post, but I am not ready to now. This whole topic is deeply heavy to me for a variety of reasons I don’t want to go into in this medium, at least not at this time. I do want to say that my “ambivalence” about the matter is not something I seek to inhabit for the sake of embodying a sort of constant indecision (as some have accused Rowan Williams, rightly or wrongly, of doing). But I haven’t yet done the biblical study that I feel I need to do, and until I have I don’t dare do much more than pray and continue to investigate, while listening to as many voices as possible.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:45 pm | Permalink
  38. Halden wrote:

    Not to just take a shot across the bow here, but I think its kind of disingenuous to claim that you “received” a tradition, when you in fact converted into the tradition you now support. You chose your tradition and, thus are not in a different epistemological place than those who dissent from tradition.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Permalink
  39. adhunt wrote:

    Anglicanism came before me and “it” had a/some Tradition(s) before I got there. I don’t think I’ve anywhere said that we should not dissent from Tradition. I certainly dissent in certain things. But the individual theologomena of members do not negate or even “change” Tradition.

    My point was on mutual challenge and the problematic that is posed by “oppressed” vs “oppressor” language. Not least when, as in my church, “Traditionalists” are in poor countries who are financially dependent on those Churches with whom they disagree.

    In fact I’m pretty much saying what you said in the posts you pointed to.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:54 pm | Permalink
  40. Halden wrote:

    Yeah, I’m not seeking to speak to those issues. All I’m saying is that you didn’t “receive” a tradition any more than advocates of change do. You’re both choosing your beliefs on the basis of what you believe to be correct.

    All I’m saying is that there’s not an epistemic difference between what you’re doing in holding to tradition and what Aric and Dan are doing in holding to a different belief. And thus, I’d say the onus is rather equally on everyone to argue for the rightness of their views (and this, actually I take to be my most significant shift from how I felt 3 years ago).

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 12:58 pm | Permalink
  41. Hill wrote:

    I’m going to chime in in agreement with the Elder Flyer. Regardless of how one feels about the issue of gay marriage, this list is simply wooden, unfunny and in some places, stupid. I think it attests to an unacknowledged enthusiasm to establish one’s liberal bona fides that something like this is met with such knee-slapping. It’s not funny! It’s ok to think that and not be a homophobic fundamentalist… or maybe it’s not ok? I don’t know.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Permalink
  42. Halden wrote:

    I think its ok to think that. For my part I thought it was funny, though I agree it is not well-written.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Permalink
  43. Halden wrote:

    I also agree that Roger is to be called Elder Flyer from now on.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 1:06 pm | Permalink
  44. adhunt wrote:

    I appreciate what you’re saying Halden. I feel that it’s quite a volunteeristic account of the the Church(es) and one that I disagree with. A Church is not simply an aglomeration of the individuals and what it is ontologically is not accounted for by the conscious assentional beliefs of members.

    I did not “choose” to take Anglicanism upon myself but to put myself under its authority. And advocates of change, by virtue of staying in a Church, are likewise putting themselves under the authority of their Church and Tradition.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 1:10 pm | Permalink
  45. adhunt wrote:

    Can I scratch most of that last comment? I don’t think I was ‘getting’ what you were saying. Or rather the first part which I think went off wildly into tangential territory.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Permalink
  46. adhunt wrote:

    Alright, a better response, in good faith, I hope:

    You said: ” the onus is rather equally on everyone to argue for the rightness of their views”

    I don’t agree with this and I think you probably do not as well. An example. Perhaps a Mennonite person came to be convinced of the rightness of “Just War” theory. Let us also say that this person became very uncomfortable with the Mennonites historical position on non-violence to the point where s/he could not bear it anymore.

    Do you think that this person should start publishing “Mennonite Just War” tracts? She s/he start gathering “support” for h/er position by preaching pro-war sermons and writing pro-war Mennonite papers? Should s/he start decrying the ‘ethical laziness’ of those who would rather ‘watch the innocent suffer’ than step in with force? When encountering resistance within Mennonite churches should s/he start quoting Martin Niemoller and proclaiming the rightness of h/er views? When people said that s/he was breaking with Tradition do you really think s/he should have been right to say that every Mennonite had to “argue for the rightness of their views?”

    Or, would it be a genuine transgression against the Mennonite tradition? Would it not be more right and even holy for h/er to have left a long time ago and been incorporated into a Tradition that s/he affirmed?

    There are Traditions and they are worth keeping and their foundations should not be torn down every generation and be made to be argued for all over again. It’s doctrinal anarchy.

    Now, this person could have stayed a Mennonite and made their arguments and advocated for change, but if s/he had remained a Mennonite then it would have been more right to also submit to the Mennonite authorities and realized that s/he might not “win” than molest and upset the Churches.

    All of this is hypothetical but I think it makes a fair point.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Permalink
  47. Halden wrote:

    I do understand this point. I should say that I wasn’t referring to the inter-anglican discussion, but rather to the discussion taking place here and in Christianity more broadly.

    That being said, though I do tend to think that traditions should be arenas of discourse over issues, and sometimes that should include ones previously thought settled. What those are and are not is a crucial thing to figure out, of course.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Permalink
  48. “Innovative sexuality”? I call bullshit!

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Permalink
  49. I really don’t see what there is to be ambivalent about. Am I missing something? I know, you’re going to go with the magic book of spells thing, but are you deeply ambivalent about whether or not the sun moves around the earth because of Joshua? Or, perhaps you are, but that ambivalence doesn’t seem to mean much for social and political issues. I suppose I find the ambivalence a kind of violence because it is the sort of thing that keeps people from calling bullshit on churches when they pull out of doing things that are basic to their core teachings, like ministering to the poor and oppressed (and this has happened across the US recently, in Protestant and Roman churches).

    Yeah, I’m “marginalizing” the oppressors. Big fucking deal.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Permalink
  50. adhunt wrote:

    I never even said what I think about sexuality but whatever, just give me a call when immanentist ontology saves the world.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 6:42 pm | Permalink
  51. roger flyer wrote:

    I should like you to refer to me as Flyer the Elder, (and nobody be disrespecting me) but I lost my ‘elder title’ when I fell out of church. I don’t know if I can ever go back and wear my Pastor hat and I know it upsets some of you ecclesial types.

    Halden, things are never funny when they are poorly written and carelessly executed. Well, maybe a few Simpsons episodes are the exception…

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:37 pm | Permalink
  52. roger flyer wrote:

    Polyester is not exclusively hetero. There are gay people with bad taste, too.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:38 pm | Permalink
  53. roger flyer wrote:


    It sounds like you’ve got the stirring of a book in you. I think you need a bigger back-story to some of your theological conclusions to support statements like this…

    “And the case for acceptance of homosexuality is not confined to “some sociological debunking of naive assumptions concerning marriage”.

    It is, rather, a thorough and utter demolition on sociological, scientific, ethical, and I would say theological grounds of the paltry case against homosexuality.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Permalink
  54. dan wrote:

    I think you’ve mentioned that a few times now so, good ahead, feel free to share what you think about sexuality.

    But really, conversations like these just drive me batshit crazy. I try to point to a scriptural argument and then the arguments I make are ignored while my rhetoric is called into question… by a person who seems to engage in quite a bit of petulant and abrasive talk in this thread (while avoiding making any arguments whatsoever on the subject at hand, heck, he hasn’t even said what he actually thinks about sexuality)… which then makes me want to respond in a similar manner… and then everybody just gets caught up defending themselves and their style of writing and taking digs at others… which then leads us away from the subject under discussion and, very quickly, makes us all sound like a bunch of obnoxious douchebags who think they’re brilliant because they got ‘A’s in college, drink microbrews and smoke pipe tobacco. Fuck. I have no idea how to negotiate this sort of situation.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Permalink
  55. Not true. Polyester is the fabric of the disco era. While heterosexuals obviously participated in the disco era, they mostly swung both ways. Disco culture was a phase for the heterosexual population, but persisted in the homosexual population for a long time.

    Polyester is gay.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Permalink
  56. adhunt wrote:

    But Dan that’s not the point I was trying to make. I hate talking about homosexuality because I’m a straight white married westerner. It’s too fucking easy for me to talk about it. So I talk about Tradition and how we approach it.

    I could really care less what people do with their genitals. I know gay partnered priests who care more about the Creeds and caring for the Church than plenty of straight revsionists. What I do care about is the public worship of the Church and so I do not support (in my own church) the rejection of Catholicity just so we can compose marriage rites for same sex couples. But I’m in the minority right now. And then I’m automatically the homophobic fucking fundamentalist/literalist/oppressor so what’s the point of bringing it up?

    Either way, I think moral authority in the Church belongs most times with those Churches who are still suffering martyrdom, and they are all pretty much on the “conservative” side.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 8:52 pm | Permalink
  57. Derek wrote:


    that statement in the parenthesis is great. It resonates with much of my experience as a student of theology the last few years. I am unsure of where you come out on this topic, but I agree with your sentiment here.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:28 pm | Permalink
  58. Aric Clark wrote:

    I fear books on homosexuality have been done to death. You’re right of course, Flyer the Elder, that what I said needs more background, but this is a blog comment thread on a post that was really an off-handed attempt at humor so we’ve already taken it too far, probably. Happy to discuss it with you more another time or at my own blog if you ever venture there.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:50 pm | Permalink
  59. Aric Clark wrote:

    Hey, I resent the implication that I drink microbrews or smoke pipe tobacco! I am definitely brilliant though. I got A’s in college after all. And Seminary too – which we all know is WAY harder than college.

    Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Permalink
  60. Auggie Webster wrote:

    Serious practical questions addressed to all the posters on this thread.

    1) In the next 500 years, will the Roman Catholic Church extend the sacrament of marriage to LGBTs? Why or why not?

    2) Will Protestantism exist in 500 years? Why or why not?

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 12:08 am | Permalink
  61. So what do you do when the Church catholic is wrong?

    Seriously, the microbrew/pipe tobacco line was brilliant. And immanentist philosophy never claimed to save the world. That’s sort of the point.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 4:45 am | Permalink
  62. roger flyer wrote:

    I’ll visit. You don’t have to call me flyer the elder, but I like the respect.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 7:20 am | Permalink
  63. Paul wrote:

    As soon as I saw point #9, my heart leaped for joy! I’ve been repressing feelings for my dog for years!

    *clears throat*

    After looking at the contentious discussion thread here, may I suggest that we stop talking about this issue on this thread? Actually, may I go further and suggest we stop talking about it on theology blogs, period, unless we all mutually agree to set aside our egos and talk about this cordially? I’m already seeing the usual caricatures popping up here: “You’re attacking/not submitting to tradition”, “Your ambivalence is an accessory to oppression”. Gee, I’ve never heard this stuff before.

    As Christians, don’t you think it’s best we reserve discussions like these to face-to-face conversations over coffee or beer? Face it, the Internet always has and always will be a terrible forum to debate something this divisive. Let’s not descend to the immature pot-shooting of our culture, okay?

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 7:30 am | Permalink
  64. roger flyer wrote:

    The brew that is often brewing just below the surface in Halden’s blog community is one of deep anger, resentment, hurt and rejection. A lot of brilliant and passionate young white men smoking pipes and popping off.

    I, for one, frequently feel that there is no way to negotiate ‘this sort of situation’ with you and others, because you’re so ‘right’…

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 7:32 am | Permalink
  65. roger flyer wrote:

    HI Paul-
    I’m with you. What kind of beer do you have in your fridge?

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 7:33 am | Permalink
  66. saint egregious wrote:

    Why not reject the ‘rejection of Catholicity’ at the same time one embracing the catholic possibility of blessing same sex relations of quite catholic members of the body (catholic in that many have, as you said, embraced the very creeds you are anxious to uphold)?
    There are plenty of good resources to uphold a catholic reading of same sex relations, as I’m sure you know. (Williams, Rogers, D’Costa, Alison, the list goes on).
    I guess I don’t see why you need to allow your understandable frustration with a stupid knee jerk liberalism prevent you from a more integrated Catholic position.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 7:47 am | Permalink
  67. Jim West wrote:

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 8:21 am | Permalink
  68. roger flyer wrote:

    Whoah Jim! Now that is a thread killer.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 8:31 am | Permalink
  69. Jim West is an idiot. “Magic spell book says so!”

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 8:55 am | Permalink
  70. roger flyer wrote:

    Sounds like you left with Ichabod

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 9:56 am | Permalink
  71. adhunt wrote:

    That fits quite well with me Roger. I can’t even count the number of times that blogs have left me ill on account of my lack of charity. And ask your son, I’m a half decent guy over a glass of wine. Really, I quickly forget how inexperienced, young and naive I am compared to the type of intellectual talent that frequents this blog.

    kyrie eleison

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 9:56 am | Permalink
  72. adhunt wrote:


    You suffer through it and engage it. Or at least that’s what I feel I should do.

    St. Egregious,

    I’m thinking less of ‘catholicity’ in the sense of a horizon of theological interpretation – in which case you’re right that there are plenty of ‘catholics’ who make powerful cases for ‘inclusion’ (for lack of a better term).

    I mean more the rejection of Communion between churches. IMO, Anglicanism’s “catholicity” will be compromised if we continue to fracture.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 9:59 am | Permalink
  73. Aric Clark wrote:

    ROFL. Your satire was almost as funny as Halden’s.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 10:13 am | Permalink
  74. Ichabody wrote:

    Jim West is the thinking man’s fundamentalist.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 12:13 pm | Permalink
  75. saint egregious wrote:

    Perhaps, but as I read Williams, and, oddly enough, Radner, with whom I mightily disagree on the presenting issue, it may be that in a steadfast fidelity to a ‘fractured’ communion we witness most powerfully to our faith in Christ alone, and not in any ecclesial immaculateness. That is, I am willing to enter into a covenant with my brothers and sisters who reject gay and lesbian Christians as brothers and sisters, and even accept excommunication if the covenant makes that exclusion. Not unlike what the non-Jurors did (see Radner’s analysis of this in his remarkable essay, The Humiliation of Anglicanism’). No need to panic in such exclusion, or in the fracture, nor to jump ship or seek greener pastures. Cruciform faith may necessitate, as Radner argues, a cruciform church.
    St. E

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Permalink
  76. saint egregious wrote:

    “Both superstition and unbelief are forms of unfreedom. In superstition, objectivity is conceded to be a power–like that of Medusa’s head–which can petrify subjectivity, and unfreedom does not will that the spell be broken.” –Kierkegaard [Concept of Anxiety, Hong trans. p. 138]
    Your Bible, my utterly orthodox friend, is a slitherin’ and a slidin’ and has turned your heart to stone. Mind yourself, your indesluttede is showing.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Permalink
  77. Why?

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Permalink
  78. adhunt wrote:

    Perhaps. I certainly find both to be among the most powerful thinkers on ecclesiology writing today (Anglicans from Hooker to Ramsey to Milbank seem to be especially keen on this topic). I still find some trajectories within TEC to be ambiguous at best.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Permalink
  79. roger flyer wrote:

    You mean like jumbo shrimp? military intelligence?

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Permalink
  80. R.O. Flyer wrote:

    Only if I can be called Flyer the Younger.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Permalink
  81. Seems like this discussion started out engaging issues between scripture and tradition/interpretation, then sort or veered on to other important points. I just wanted to add something to the initial posts since I happen to be watching all 3 versions of “fiddler on the Roof” and am comparing them with each other and Aleichem’s story. The US version (1971) begins With the Chagall like figure of the fiddler balancing precariously on the roof. Tevye compares the Jews to the fiddler and asks, how do we keep our balance in such a dangerous world? “Tradition,” he answers, “…without traditions our lives would be as shaky as a fiddler on the roof.” Then the movie cuts to a rapid montage of images representing tradition such as the Mosaic law, and the Magen David, then to applauding how their ‘traditions’ guide them in every aspect of their lives; how they work, eat, dress, pray, etc. ‘Tradition is how we survive(d).’ Of course, the pogrom is coming, Spinoza is busy unraveling the threads of their tallits (as well as Calvin and catechism), and later a socialist shows up in their village from Kiev with radical ideas (but that’s later in the movie). Perhaps more challenging, that precocious former Catholic altar boy, Foucault, is penning a searing critique of religion and tradition. In his “What is Critique,” he argues “…the Christian Church developed this idea…that every individual, whatever his age or his status, from the beginning to the end of his life and down to the very details of his actions, ought to be governed and ought to let himself be governed, that is to say, be directed toward his salvation, by someone to whom he is bound in a total, and at the same time meticulous and detailed, relation of obedience.” Now, Tevye puts it a little differently, “tradition let’s everyman know who he is and what G-d expects of him.” Back to that montage on tradition in the movie, one quick frame shows the women sealed away behind the mechitza, another shows the children in Hebrew school, all boys, then cuts back to the Torah! So, will Tevya find husbands for his 5 daughters, oy vey?! Are all the Jews slaughtered in the coming pogrom by their Christian neighbors? Will Purjic the socialist get universal health care passed? I won’t spoil the ending for youall, check out the movies @ Netflix. Obliged.

    Friday, February 5, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Permalink
  82. roger flyer wrote:

    I think you’re a very thoughtful Christian (and Anglican by way of Pentecost ;) )
    and I appreciate your humility. It’s a great gift. and glad that you and Ry have gotten together…

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Permalink
  83. roger flyer wrote:

    or Flyer the Brilliant son.

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Permalink
  84. roger flyer wrote:

    I would be happy to answer your questions. Send $19.95 for my DVD. “What will the world look like in 2510?”

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Permalink
  85. roger flyer wrote:

    Are you addressing Flyer the Elder? Please take off your tuque.

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:15 pm | Permalink
  86. roger flyer wrote:

    As always, thoughtful comments, if also somewhat off-topic and at times stream-of-consciously somewhat incoherent. But certainly a good Yiddish wake up call to us pipe smokers: “Boys, be mensches!”

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Permalink
  87. roger flyer wrote:

    Friends, I know you’ll miss me as I’ve tried to extend this thread to 100 comments, but I’ll leave you to arm wrestle each other for awhile. Love to all.

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Permalink
  88. Auggie Webster wrote:

    The only thing we can be sure about the world in 2510 is that it will be, as always, “the world” and it is the Church’s task to let it know that it is so.

    But what will the Church look like and will that Church be marrying gays?

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 4:55 pm | Permalink
  89. R.O. Flyer wrote:

    Of course that works too.

    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 5:17 pm | Permalink
  90. R.O. Flyer wrote:


    Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Permalink
  91. Well Roger, I should apologize, perhaps I am overly influenced by the ‘Language Poets’ and experimental writers like Perec, Bernstein, Zukofsky, Silliman, etc. that I read a lot. Sometimes the discourses of these issues become entrenched and one looks for a way to enlarge or disrupt the dominant patterns of argument. Halden’s ‘12’ seems a good attempt at that. “Fiddler,” address almost all of Halden’s 12, but in a different way. The question in Fiddler is not ‘gay marriage,’ but the status of women, children, and the traditions (Torah+Talmud) around marriage contracts, family hierarchy, the economic imperatives involved in all social relations, the power differentials among people, state, sexes, classes, religions, as well as theodicy, all set to music and dancing and reeking of pathos and irony! One of Tevye’s daughters breaks tradition and unimaginably marries for love!. The next daughter takes up with a communist (atheist) and leaves the shtetl for the big city. The third wants to marry a Russian Christian! “How far can a man bend before he breaks” cries out their father Tevye? And what if his fourth daughter wants to marry another Jewish woman, and the fifth a transgendered Baptist? What is the breaking point Tevye asks God. And just where is God in all this? the failed harvest, the lame horse, the broken promises, the swords of the Cossacks;? In The Book? The Book! And when the book breaks or breaks us? Is this breaking what God wanted all along?

    But, for once in his life the old Rebbe Zvee bent the rules and danced with a women, and his face was turned towards heaven with a radiant mosaic smile. Obliged.

    Sunday, February 7, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Permalink
  92. roger flyer wrote:

    Thanks for your transparency, Daniel. And I’m obliged. When you post, I often get glimpses of your ‘experimental writers’ influence. I understand your compulsion to throw curveballs to the sultans of swat–

    I love your review of the underlying themes and thoughtful consideration of the characters in Fiddler…but I’d forgotten the fourth daughter and her love affair with the transgendered Baptist. He probably didn’t have that in mind in sunrise, sunset.

    Wednesday, February 10, 2010 at 5:30 am | Permalink
  93. roger flyer wrote:

    That is, Tevye didn’t.

    Wednesday, February 10, 2010 at 5:31 am | Permalink
  94. Michael Harris wrote:


    Thursday, February 18, 2010 at 8:00 am | Permalink

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