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February 12, 2012

Some comments about same-sex marriage

We recently got a few interesting new comments on some old blog posts:  Mars Needs Moms. Earth Needs Less Homophobia and Sexism. (a blog about the film Mars Needs Moms and its possible homophobic and anti-feminist undertones, originally posted in March 2011) and Stupid Protest: The Million Moms Against Miley (a blog about the One Million Moms criticizing Miley Cyrus for advocating love, tolerance and acceptance, originally written in May 2009).

We're not sure why these blogs are getting some attention, so long after they were posted. Perhaps it has to do with the recent attention the OMM have gotten lately thanks to their misguided boycott of JC Penney and Ellen Degeneres or maybe they googled "same-sex marriage" or something. Either way, some anonymous commenter/s (it might be the same person) has revived two old posts in order to scold and educate us for being wrong about the gays.

We think their comments are both hilarious and sad, so we thought we'd share some of it with you all and respond.

From the Mars Needs Moms blog:
And what the hell..Are you saying this movie is against same sex marriage?It looks like you are some crazy homosexual trying to convince heterosexuals about your superiority and you see a threat in everything that is,among the majority of society considered normal.Saying things like "gay marriage may actually be better for kids" is unacceptable,just as much as saying that gay partners can't take care of children. [Feb 5, 2011]
We think we already explained in detail why we feel the movie comes off as anti-feminist, homophobic and biased against any non-traditional family, but if the commenter doesn't agree that's their opinion. But we felt we had to address their outrage over the "gay marriage may actually be better for kids" comment.

The actual line they were referring to was: "A lot of experts have stated that not only do the children of same-sex couples grow up just as well developed as other kids, but gay marriage may actually be better for kids." That's not our idea that we made up. We were simply stating that there has been evidence to suggest that same-sex parents might be better for children.

The theory is that gay parents may tend to be more motivated, more committed and more involved because they more often chose to be parents (while there's a 50% "accidental pregnancy" rate among heterosexuals). There is also evidence to suggest that children of same-sex couples are more tolerant, more open-minded, more empathetic and less likely to be held back by outdated gender stereotypes. [Here's just one source on this research: Gay Parents Better Than Straight Parents? What Research Says]

That's not to say that all children of gay parents will do "better" than all children of straight parents. It's just a theory based on averages. (Just as it's not fair to say that all children from two-parent households will do "better" than all children from single-parent households.)

While there is evidence that might suggest that same-sex parents are better for children, as far as we know, no one is out there making the claim that children need to be raised by same-sex parents (or single parents or grandparents or any other non-traditional family) in order to succeed. But there are a lot of politicians and government agencies that are making the argument that kids need two heterosexual married parents in order to succeed... even though the research doesn't support that claim.

And of course, the commenter called me "some crazy homosexual" because only gay people support equality, right? It's no one's business what my orientation is, but the fact is I'm heterosexual. But I'm also a single parent, another form of "family" that is dismissed as inadequate in the film. We responded to their comment and then a few days later two new comments popped up.  One on the Miley Cyrus blog:
This was an amazing action Miley Cirus took. God wanted everyone to love eachother and in that way she is dead on. However, God made marriage and it's between a man and a woman. Gays were around when Jesus was and he said it was a sin, but to love everyone regardless. Love them all, just don't let them spoil the marriage God made. [Feb 10, 2012]
To which we responded:
Not everyone believes in the same God that you do, so it's not correct to say that God made marriage. God made your understanding of marriage, not mine. Marriages take place outside of Christianity all the time and many Christians do not believe that marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

I can't stop anyone from practicing their religion the way they see fit, nor would I try to. No one is forcing Christian churches to perform same-sex marriages; civil marriage has nothing to do with your God or your religion.

Unless they're trying to marry you, there's nothing any gay couple can do to "spoil" your personal idea of marriage. Is your faith in God and Jesus so weak that you cannot have the marriage you believe in just because others happen to marry differently?

The greatest lesson to learn from Jesus is to love one another. And that's that. [Feb 10, 2012]
We also got another angry comment on the Mars Needs Moms blog: 
You people have a serious problem if you don't appreciate traditional families! How DARE you belittle families like the one I was raised in! I was raised by my Mom and Dad, and I wouldn't have it any other way! That's right! I call my parents "Mom and Dad!" Do you think I'm hateful and homophobic for calling them that? Well, let me tell you something! If it wasn't for Moms and Dads, the world would be completely devoid of people! What do you heterophobes have against men and women marrying each other and having children together? Do you not realize that it takes a man and a woman to conceive a child? Two people of the same sex cannot do that! Do you want to see traditional families dwindle out? I happen to love my Mom and Dad! I am honored to be their daughter! And nothing you people say to me will ever change that! [Feb 10 2012]
Now that was just annoying. They took the previous commenter's misconceptions and just doubled them. I get really pissed when people completely twist and distort what we write and then use that to make stupid assumptions about us. I also get really pissed when people are so grossly ignorant about... well... everything. She completely doesn't get what gay people are actually doing when they fight for equal rights. It's not about taking away anything from straight people. I feel like that is one of the dumbest arguments that anti-gay bigots make - the world will cease to exist if gay couples marry! Traditional families with dwindle out! (Plus the sarcasm in their comment was so barfy: "I call my parents 'Mom and Dad!'" Gasp!)

Sometimes we're content to just let these kind of ignorant comments slide, but I felt the need to put this woman in her place because she was just so wrong and so angry about it. ("How DARE you!")

I quickly responded:
Where did anyone say we had a problem with "traditional" families? We just disagree with the bigots who have a problem with non-traditional families. I was raised by heterosexual parents and I am a heterosexual parent. So I don't know where you people are getting that idea that we're heterophobes or against men and women marrying each other. Get a grip.

I don't care if traditional families dwindle out, because I don't think that's the only valid family. But that doesn't mean I want it to happen. I just want same-sex couples (and single parents) to have the same rights and respect as anyone else. [Feb 10, 2012]

This caused her to backtrack a little bit... but only a little bit. And then she posted some of the most ridiculous drivel we've seen in a while here at Evil Slutopia:
Okay, Lilith, (and anyone else I may have offended), I apologize for my outburst. But I have to be honest here. I did read some things by you and some of the other people who commented on this blog, and those comments did sound heterophobic to me, whether they were intended to be, or not. Some of the people who commented said that children who were raised by same-sex couples are better off than children who were raised by their biological parents. I happen to disagree with that. Also, Lilith, that comment you made about not caring if traditional families dwindle out is, whether you think so or not, heterophobic. Believe it or not, the world needs traditional families. As I said before, I would not change a thing about the kind of family I come from. I do appreciate knowing that you yourself came from a traditional family and are raising your own children the same way. I would think that that fact alone, would make you appreciate traditional families more, and not want them to dwindle out.

If anybody here thinks I'm a horrible person, judging by what I've been saying, think again. People know me as a kind and loving person. I would never intentionally upset anybody, but to be honest, I do have a temper. The times we're living in are difficult, because there is so much hatred in the world. Look, I don't hate people who live alternative lifestyles. I love everybody. I just hate alternative lifestyles, themselves. I'm a devout Christian, and I believe that God created two different sexes for a purpose. Let's face it, God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. If God had intended for two people of the same sex to marry each other, He would not have created Adam and Eve in the first place. But I know you people believe otherwise, and I can't change your minds. I pray that God will open your eyes to the truth one day. I hope you all will not think badly of me and my beliefs, and I do hope you will forgive me for my outburst the last time I posted. This will be my final post on this blog, and I will not be coming back here to read it, so let's call a truce, okay? 'Nuff said. [Feb 11, 2012]
Yes, she actually said "Adam and Steve" in all seriousness. Clearly I wasn't going to call that a truce. It wasn't even close to a truce. She was dead on wrong. Heterophobia is not a real thing. It's like when people throw around arguments about "reverse racism" or "sexism against men". It just doesn't exist in even remotely the same way that real homophobia, racism, and sexism does. I really hate when people try to educate me and preach to me, so I had to have the last word:
Oh geez. Okay...

First of all, I call bullshit on this whole "heterophobic" thing. The U.S. is extremely heterosexist and homophobic. If someone who feels that all people deserve the same rights and respect happens to fight against that homophobia and heterosexism, it doesn't make them heterophobic.

I think you are using the word incorrectly and you are just grossly misunderstanding everything that we here at EvilSlutopia are about. We are about equality for all. I also think you're very mistaken about what gay people are trying to accomplish when they fight for equal rights.

Also, pointing out that there is evidence to support that children of same-sex parents may actually be better off, isn't heterophobic either. It's just stating the findings of a study. I think I was more than clear (above) in fully explaining what that statement meant and what the findings of the studies were, so I don't feel as though I need to defend that yet again.

No, I do not care if "traditional" families "dwindle out" because if that is what is meant to be, that is what is meant to be. I don't think that society "needs" traditional families any more than any other families. The President of the United States was raised by a single mother and his grandmother - a non-traditional family - and he turned out okay. Children need loving parents/guardians. Period. So no, I'm not overly concerned with the possibility that traditional marriage will "dwindle out".

But I don't actually think that's even a remote possibility. I do not for one second think that that will actually ever happen and I just think that's one of the arguments that anti-gay bigots use to stop same-sex couples from marrying. It is propaganda and offensive.

Do you really think that if gay couples are allowed to marry then heterosexual couples will cease to exist? Do you think that there is a limited number of marriages that the U.S. is allowed to perform and that gay couples are stealing all the good spots? LOL.

Straight people will continue to be straight, even if gay people are given equal rights, so what are you so scared about? You will still have the same chance to raise your children the same way you've always wanted to so get over this fear-mongering misinformation and follow Jesus's teachings about love and tolerance. You can hate the "alternative lifestyles" as much as you want, but keep it to yourself unless you want to come off as a hateful person... because not everyone shares your religious beliefs and your values.

To quote Ellen: "I stand for honesty, equality, kindness, compassion, treating people the way you want to be treated, and helping those in need. To me those are traditional values." [Feb 11, 2012]

We don't know if she will respond again or if she will even get to read that. Who knows if any of the other anti-gay marriage commenters will come back either. But we felt it had to be said (and shared). We're so sick of the fear mongering that anti-gay bigots use to support their homophobia. We can't force anyone to interpret their religion the way that we do... but we definitely won't let them pressure us into sharing their warped beliefs.


Yandie, Goddess of Pickles. said...

awesome takedown of those comments!

Epiphora said...

OH GOD a world without "traditional" households, whatever would we do!!! I also love that she gave you more respect once she learned that you were raised by heterosexual parents. Ugh.

Anonymous said...

I was raised in a traditional household and believe that everyone should have equal rights. I would love to see my LGBT friends get married and live the lives that they dreamed about.

I completely agree with your blog's message about equality for all. I second Yandie's praise. Excellent rebuttal!

Jacob said...

About the comment that said Jesus spoke out against homosexuality, I have to ask where? From what I can remember, it is not in the Gospels.

Paul (I think) spoke about it. But Paul is not Jesus. He is a zealot who switched sides.

What else is there?

There are rules about it in the Old Testament. But there are also rules in the Old Testament about what people can eat. Keep kosher or shut up is what I say.

Also, there is Lot's tale in Sodom. But I never took it as homosexuality is bad. I thought it was more about the ancient societies' obsession with being a good host. Because well, first of all, gang rape is not homosexual sex any more than it is heterosexual sex. If the issue is what hole they are sticking it in, then the passage also can be used to justify gang rape of women. Or allowing your daughters to be raped. After all, if the problem is the gang rape, then where do people get that it teaching homosexuality is wrong? It only works if you say the men of Sodom would have been doing the right thing if they took Lot's offer of his daughters.

So, for my own sanity, I take the story of Sodom as not preaching anti-homosexuality, lest I am surrounded by people who believe in a religion that supports the gang rape of women.

Sorry for rambling.

Jillms said...

I would like to see a "traditional" couple prove how any same-sex marriage has harmed their marriage or their relationship. They can't.

Jen said...

I just found your blog today and I have to say, I'm in love! It's articulate, witty and hilarious, not to mention my kind of liberal. Keep up the good work!

This thread made me think of an article (if you can call it that) that I just read. The message is appalling but I still thought it warranted being shared. It's amazing how people can skew research to support their views. I think we, as a society, all need to engage in a little more critical thinking and stop taking everything we read at face value. It's unfortunate to think about how many people read things like this and think, "This proves I've been right all along!" It goes to show we have a lot more work to do and I applaud you for doing that work and doing it well!


G Harris-Howe said...

I was raised in a traditional household with a stay-at-home mom. I'm 21 years into a delightful, loving, monogamous, same-sex relationship with a man who was also raised in a traditional household with a stay-at-home mom. Our relationship was embraced by both of our families and friends (we've hosted Thanksgiving many times). Yes, we are proud. And we are greatful. God sees, and He understands.

Anonymous said...

How traditional? Whatever happened to the good old traditional family where we would just add another bedroom when one of the kids got married, anyway? Wasn't it easier to find a babysitter when that was traditional?
When people talk about traditional families they should be asked to specify whose tradition they mean.
(in Wikipedia, find this under Extended Families - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extended_family)
M Davis

Anonymous said...

To me the most tragic aspect of the story of Christ is how the message of His ministry, neatly encapsulated by Ellen's comment, became hijacked by a populace who would see a sign, who needed miracles in order to believe. Apparently the proper answer to Christ's question to Pilate, "What is truth?" would be "Not enough".

Anonymous said...

@ G Harris-Howe:
I was raised in what you call a traditional family, too - it was awful. Dad was a tyrannical baby who had to have his way in everything, prone to shouting and racing around with hands flapping and generally terrorizing the family. After mom died, he was interrupted in the process of setting up the blackmail and the alibi to get away with killing me. So now I comment.
Tell me, in what way does this traditional marriage support God the father as a loving god? I remember getting stuck at "when a child asks a father for bread, would the father give the child a stone?" to which I thought - "Well, Yes!" and put that book down for about 15 years.
Point being, it is the individuals in a living arrangement that make it loving or a living hell.
Just think of me as a random Samaritan.
(left anonymous for privacy reasons)

Inferno said...

With all the screwed up people running around blaming their parents and how they happened to be raised in "traditional households" you'd think people would want to be seeing something different being added to the norm.