"This is the generation of the great LEVIATHAN, or rather, to speak more reverently of that mortal god, to which we own under the immortal God, our peace and defense." -Thomas Hobbes: Leviathan
I see the almost religious fervency in which progressives defend gay marriage as the product of mass democratic disenfranchisement. It is the last banner which they can wave about to prop up the illusion of progress and the world “getting better”, even as it collapses of all around the world.
The advocacy of gay marriage is like attacks on and tinkering of contemporary monarchies. Long after the monarchy has lost all substantive political power over vital economic forces, and which cost is minuscule compared to the billions squandered by the incompetence and corruption of their democratic politicians, still they persist in their attack on a practically useless and hollow institution, when all persons of prudent rationality would rather direct their energies towards their politicians who wield actual power. For example, David Cameron recently revised the laws of succession to permit a Roman Catholic to inherit the throne, long after the monarchy has ceased to play any real role in the life of the Church of England. Why bother?
They do it because that’s the only thing they can do. Helpless to influence and affect actual social-economic forces, disenfranchised by the established political system, they turn their attention to what will give them the illusion of progress, the abolishment of the monarchy. Of course the politicians are more than happy to give them something to distract them from the actual problems of the country; they are hardly threatened by the tinkering of an institution which has lost all substantial political or economic significance. So, never mind that elections are meaningless, voters are disenfranchised, the economy is shot to hell, and poverty is rapidly increasing and corporations and the rich are ripping you off, at least you got rid of those poor helpless crown heads eh? Progress! Power to the people!
It is more or less the same thing which gay marriage. Long after marriage has ceased to be a substantive promise and obligation by at will divorces and has become an illusory contract, long after premarital fornication and other sexual vices have severed all erotic significance from the marital bond, still, inexplicably, people want to extent the benefits of a useless piece of paper to homosexual couples. Homosexual advocates of an earlier generation would have been considered marriage to be an oppressive bourgeois institution standing in the way of the free flow of love. Today everyone wants the magic fairy dust of a meaningless piece of paper to “express” their love, but none of the actual substance of a binding promise and obligation. This is why the homosexual lobby outrage at the straight New Zealand rugby best buds getting into a gay marriage was so hilarious. Uh, yar, your marital contract which you so coveted is actually a meaningless piece of ornamentation, what are you so pissed off about? It’s like suddenly they actually realise that it is really magical fairy dust. Of course, like the monarchy, it is once more very easy to tinker with useless and hollowed institutions after the fact once it has been emptied of any real erotic, social or substantive significance.
Even though the ISIS is rising, the Western economy is collapsing, Pax Americana is weakening, democratic movements are failing all over the world, authoritarian governments are gaining strength, civic bonds, families, and civil society are unraveling and unemployment and poverty are rising at phenomenal rates… at least we got gay marriage.
What a great triumph for the progress of the world!
Without gay marriage, how else can The Economist tell people that the world is still “leaping forward”?
This is why they will tenaciously fight for it, argue for it, fervently advocate for it. Without these illusions of progress, they would be forced to confront their actual disenfranchisement, their inability to make any real difference to substantive political or economic issues, and that the progressive oracles who have promised power to the people and bread have lied and all we have is the wasteland of mass bureaucratic deadlock.
And then they would despair.