What ‘Family Values’ Really Means

Pat Robertson showed conclusively what I and many others have been saying for a long time, that the phrase “family values” means nothing more than hating gay people (and women, of course. And pagans. And everyone else non-Christian) by telling a woman she should ruin her relationship with her sister rather than attend her wedding to another woman.

Meeuwsen: This is from Kathryn who says: ‘I’ve been asked to be a bridesmaid in my sister’s wedding. There is only one problem. My sister is gay and she’s marrying her partner. I don’t know what to do. If I don’t agree, our relationship will be ruined. I don’t even know if I should attend the wedding, much less be a part of it.’

Robertson: That is a very hard decision but you can’t add you’re—if you go what you’re doing is saying ‘I bless this union and I agree that what you’re doing is right.’ You know the Bible is so clear about homosexuality and when you read in what Paul said, he said, ‘Wherefore God gave them up,’ and having given them up they did evil things with their own bodies, men for men and women with women, defaming their bodies. Read Romans, read the Book of Romans, this isn’t something I came up with, read it in Romans. You say, ‘should I go to my sister’s wedding, should I participate,’ the answer is to tell your sister, ‘I love you but I cannot participate a ceremony that is contrary to God’s word, period.’ If she doesn’t like it, if that breaks the union between you, that’s tough luck.

Because the one thing you should always do if you’re in favor of “family values” is destroy relationships with members of your family because they’re gay.


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  • RickR

    I don’t know what’s sorrier- the sick, fucked up excuse for a human being that is Pat Robertson, or the person who comes to him for advice.

  • jamessweet

    No no no, you are thinking of the wrong definition of “value”. You are probably thinking of “A principle, standard, or quality considered worthwhile or desirable” (definition 4 here). But Pat Robertson and friends mean it as in “McDonald’s extra value menu.”

    In other words: “Family values” means it’s sort of like normal families, except shittier and cheaper.

  • Doug Little

    For any reasonable person there would be no conflict here and consequently no decision to make. Family values pffftttt… more like moral bankruptcy.

  • +1 internets for jamessweet.

  • The Lorax

    And, slowly but surely, bit by bit, “family values” is becoming an oxymoron.

  • It’s at times like these I like to turn to my good friend Morbo for his stance on this advice:

    “Family values do not work that way!”

    Thanks, Morbo.

  • MikeMa

    The value, if this poor confused woman accepts Robertson’s advice, is there will be one more miserable, angry and vindictive human willing to place her phony religion above her friends and family. Religion, adding misery and hate to life for thousands of years.

  • peterh

    I’ve come to be very leery of any statement containing the term “value” unless it’s along the lines of “That value (as in mathematics) is ________ “

  • lancifer

    It is unfortunately a fact that many religious people have problems with homosexuality in general and gay marriage in particular.

    To expect them not only to attend but actually participate in a ceremony that celebrates gay marriage may be hoping for too much from them.

    I am an atheist but almost all of my family are “born again” Christians.

    If I were gay and getting married I would probably invite them them to participate in the ceremony but let them know that they could just come to the reception afterward.

    I wouldn’t put them in the position of having to chose between their family and their faith.

    I know they believe a bunch of irrational horse shit, but they are my family and I love them. I have long ago gotten past the need to challenge them or defy them. They have also gotten used to the idea that I am not a believer and they (mostly) accept me for who I am and what I believe.

    I would hope that if I were a homosexual they would eventually accept that as well and I wouldn’t want to use the celebration of my marriage as a wedge against my family.

  • “If I were gay and getting married I would probably invite them them to participate in the ceremony but let them know that they could just come to the reception afterward.”

    So basically this implies that they have their god-given Values which they will put before everything: family, friends, everything…

    Except of course free nosh and booze.

    Is that right?

  • Why would they celebrate the marriage at the reception if they wouldn’t even attend the ceremony?? AND why would you pay for them?

  • Aquaria

    I don’t get why they’d go to the reception, either. The reception is a continuation of the celebration of the marriage itself, and the marriage still isn’t approved of. Why would you want a hateful cow at your reception, anyway? Who wants a hateful bigot vomiting up their disapproval on such a happy occasion.

    If a sibling said that to me, I’d tell them to stay away from anything involving my marriage completely, and don’t expect their birthdays or other important events to be acknowledged henceforth, since I don’t approve of bigoted fuckwits. If you want to play the approval game, then you get to have it turned on you.

    But then, I don’t think that family should get passes for things that I wouldn’t put up with for ten seconds from anyone else.

  • Doug Little

    I wouldn’t put them in the position of having to chose between their family and their faith.

    Sounds like they have already made that choice then.

  • greg1466

    Seems to me that it’s already too late if you even have to ask this question. She’s your friggin’ sister! But since you do have to ask, your sister’s better off without your relationship anyway.

  • bahrfeldt

    Given that Pat Robertson is, was and will be an ongoing, deceitful and obscene scam, one would almost have to assume that the entire guidance request scenario is a lie.

  • twincats

    If Lancifer @9 (and people like Lancifer) can come to a compromise like that with family, more power to ’em, I say.

    I have family who have gotten quite fundamentalist over the years and I am definitely not out to them as an unbeliever. Fortunately for me, they live a couple thousand miles away and we don’t see one another often. When we do, I just want to enjoy their company since they are getting on in years and we do all love one another. It’s just not worth it to me to upset them and create bad blood over this.

    I wonder what ol’ Pat would say to someone who was similarly undecided about being in an atheist sibling’s wedding?

  • Moggie

    She wasn’t genuinely asking Robertson for advice, since she couldn’t possibly have been in any doubt about what his response would be. No, she was seeking validation of the bigoted decision she’d already made. I don’t want to make excuses for hate, but I suppose a crumb of comfort here is that her need to get permission suggests that she’s a little insecure in her hatred. Given time, there’s still a slim chance of Kathryn becoming an adequate human being.