For Marriage: Let’s Get Ready to Rumble

Oh, the irony of it all.  For the past two years, the Republican establishment has been insisting that the only effective way to beat President Obama in 2012 is to set contentious social issues aside and focus like a laser on the economy.  Who would have thought that it would be the President himself who would catapult these issues to the fore just as campaign season enters full swing?

Forced out of the closet by the unscripted remarks of Washington’s original gaffemeister, Vice President Joe Biden, Mr. Obama has pledged his support for same-sex marriage.  Naturally, the President is being hailed for his bold stand by the liberal media, although everyone knows that he only went public because Biden’s comments on the subject left him no alternative.  Given his druthers, Obama would have maintained his coyness and not made his sentiments public until such time as he he felt he could maximize the political benefits of doing so (i.e., right after the November election).

For better or worse however, the cat is out of the bag and Mr. O is out of the closet, and the strategists behind the Republican electoral machine are wringing their hands now that the spotlight is focused elsewhere than on the economy.  If you are one of the few remaining conservatives who believes that the Republican Party represents traditional cultural values in addition to free market principles, you’ll be disappointed to know that the current Republican leadership has little interest in advocating for traditional marriage on the public stage.  This is why they were cringing in the corner when would-be presidential aspirants like Rick Santorum and Michelle Bachmann were stressing the importance of families headed by a mom and a dad.

For his part, Mr. Romney will find it difficult to navigate this issue because the perception is that he has been on both sides of the so-called fence at various points in his political career.  In the 90’s he pledged fealty to the radical gay agenda, promising to out-advocate his then opponent, Ted Kennedy, on all issues homosexual.  Today of course, he has a different opponent and is seeking to appeal to a different constituency, so he will try to portray himself as a consistent, lifelong supporter of traditional marriage.  Doing so without coming off as a flip-flopper will be difficult, and unfortunately he won’t find much help from Speaker Boehner or Republican leaders in the House or Senate, as they’ve made a policy of essentially ignoring all issues that are not economic.

Nevermind that marriage is an institution ordained by God that has served as the fundamental building block of human society since the beginning of time.  Nevermind that basic common sense (as well as several formal sociological studies) tells us that children need the influence of a mother and a father in shaping their understanding of the world, their sense of personal security and confidence, and their preparedness to function as healthy and productive members of society.  Nevermind that natural law, our anatomical appendages, and the reproduction of the human race all seem innately geared toward heterosexual unions.  Republican leaders in Washington today can’t be counted upon for anything more than a tip of the hat toward traditional marriage.  Such would be beneath the station of Washington elites and is dirty work better suited to the hoi poloi (those of us in fly-over country who cling to guns and religion).

But the American people understand the significance of the paradigm shift advocated by Mr. Biden and his Johnny-come-lately boss.  As recently as last week, 61% of North Carolinians voting cast their ballot in favor of traditional marriage and against extending the sanctity of this ancient institution to same-sex unions.  All in all, 35 states have come down on the side of traditional marriage when their citizens were given the opportunity to do so, indicating that while marriage is under assault from many quarters (high divorce rates and an increase in the rise of cohabitation), the American people intuitively understand that traditional marriage is nonetheless an institution not to be trifled with.

So social conservatives had better get ready to rumble.  The stakes couldn’t be higher, nor the impact of the outcome of the election greater.  It’s about more than the economy Messrs. Romney and Obama, and no, the American people are not stupid.

Ken Connor


Ken Connor is the Chairman of the Center for a Just Society. An esteemed attorney, Connor is affiliated with the law firm of Marks, Balette, & Giessel, a firm nationally known for its successful representation of victims of nursing home abuse and neglect.

Subscribe to CE
(It's free)

Go to Catholic Exchange homepage

  • Joe DeVet

    If one reads the brilliant book “Love and Economics” by Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, one sees why the life and health of the family is intimately tied to the life and health of the economy. 

  • Peter Nyikos

    The case against same-sex marriage can be effectively argued on secular grounds, without any reference to God or religion. Besides the family issues that Ken Connor and Joe DeVet mention, we can also attack the notion that same-sex marriage is a “civil right”.

    It is only because those Mormons and Muslims who wish polygamy to be legalized do not
    have the political savvy that the Gay Power Movement has, that we don’t hear
    claims that polygamy is a civil right. Similarly, single people caring
    for aging parents and wishing to have the financial breaks that married couples
    have, could be agitating for the right to marry one or both of their parents,
    but most of them are too decent to call such an arrangement a civil right, and
    those who would like to call them that are too disunited, and have not yet
    learned how to get liberal propagandists and the sheep who follow them on their


  • Timjhamel

    Could it be that Biden purposely made his comments to force Obama to take a stance earlier that Obama would have wanted?  Seems like Biden has done us all a favor for bringing this issue to the forefront. This now gives Americans more time to realize what Obama’s stance is and to make a moral judgement before they vote.  Sometimes God works in mysterious ways.

  • To say the economy ($$$) is more important than the importance of the family, life-issues, and morality is deeply flawed.  The economy, for sure is in trouble, but if our morale is off track so will be everything else.  This country better get its priorities straight or we are heading to the point of no return.  God bless all politicians.  

  • QuoVadisAnima

    Totally agree that we can argue this from a secular standpoint.  Once people understand that it is people of all the major faith groups who are deprived of their civil rights by such legislation, it becomes much easier to get the ambivalent to take a stand against it.  I have been posting the following as often as I can on the internet:
    Redefining marriage in order to accomodate the views of a very small minority
    has ALREADY PROVEN to deprive Americans of their Constitutional rights to free
    speech & the free practice of religion without govt interference.

    Many people of faith (no, it’s not just Christians who believe that
    homosexual behavior is offensive to God, but all the major religions of the
    world) have been fined & jailed, lost their business or job, been legally
    harrassed – even for words spoken within a church, have been refused their
    parental right to exempt their children from homosexual proselytizing in school
    whose goal is to teach kids that their parents are homophobic bigots and that
    the faith they’re being taught is wrong, too.

    Homosexuals are not being deprived of the rights granted by the Constitution
    to EVERY American; however, their effort to redefine marriage clearly DOES deny
    others their most BASIC of Constitutional rights.

    Their legal issues & concerns could be readily addressed by means other
    than trying to force the rest of us to accept their so nebulous as to be
    meaningless redefinition of marriage. The fact that they are not pursuing those
    more easily won solutions makes it pretty clear that it is precisely that effort
    to force the rest of us to submit our beliefs to theirs that is at the heart of