Just Think About It

Christian apologist Frank Turek (author of I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist) just wants you to consider these questions in light of the California Supreme Court decision to overturn the gay marriage ban:

1. For what secular purpose does the state endorse traditional marriage (i.e. what benefits does the state experience from traditional marriage)?

2. What would be the results to society if every adult lived faithfully in traditional marriage?

3. What would be the results to society if every adult lived faithfully in same-sex marriage?

4. In light of your answers above, should the state legally equate heterosexual and homosexual relationships by endorsing same sex marriage?

… I just want to see how much people have thought through this very controversial issue.

Because allowing gay marriage means you will be forced into a gay marriage, no children will ever be born, and civilization as we know it will die out.

Either that, or the crime rates will go up, children will be hurt, and taxes will go up.

No joke. He really thinks that.

According to Turek, here’s what will happen (PDF) if we allow same-sex marriage:

  • Legalization of same-sex marriage will provide state and cultural endorsement of unhealthy behavior that reduces lifespan significantly.
  • Endorsement will lead to more homosexual behavior, higher medical & health insurance costs, and restrictions on free speech and religious liberty.
  • Endorsement will make same-sex marriage the legal and cultural equivalent of traditional marriage.
  • With same-sex and traditional marriage equated, marriage itself will become just about coupling; it will not be culturally necessary for having children.
  • With marriage not culturally necessary for having children, cohabitation and illegitimacy will rise to historic highs.
  • Higher cohabitation & illegitimacy rates will hurt children, increase crime, and result in huge costs to individuals and government. Taxes will rise and/or benefits and services will be cut.

That is *so* airtight right there.

I see no flaws whatsoever.

Want a little more?

How would legalizing same-sex marriage hurt you?

a. Higher medical and insurance premiums

b. Higher taxes to pay for the financial benefits of marriage to homosexuals and the social costs that result from increased illegitimacy (including crime and welfare)

c. Reduction of your employee benefits to pay for those of homosexual couples

d. Workplace indoctrination

e. School Indoctrination of your children into the “normalcy” of homosexuality (despite the health concerns and moral objections of parents)

f. Preferential adoption to homosexuals at the expense of married couples (Children will be treated as trophies!)

g. Loss of tax-exempt status to organizations that refuse to hire homosexuals

h. Loss of free speech/religion rights (as is now the case in Sweden and Canada)

Air. Tight.


[tags]atheist, atheism[/tags]

  • Aph

    That guy is really on the ball. He has done some deep thinking about this issue. Now that he has closed the book on limiting marriage to only some Americans I hope to see other important work on limiting opportunities and maintaining second class citizens.

    Seriously though, it’s frustrating to read things such as the above.

  • Siamang

    d. Workplace indoctrination

    That’s the most hilarious one!

    It’s the word INDOCTRINATION that makes me laff.

    OH GEEZ… I just got back from a new mandatory meeting here at work… “Why you should be a gay!” I guess I’m going to have to be gay now, with all the indoctrination and all.

  • Polly

    Gay marriage is better for society and for a reason that Xians should agree with – it encourages marriage in general. The larger the proportion of singles in a population, the more the real-estate and other markets will be tailored to them, thus making singlehood the economic mode of living. As long as we keep gays single, they will always contribute to a significant anti-permanent-coupling atmosphere.
    You want to protect marriage? Start with the heterosexual divorce rate. Solve that with mandatory pre-marital, and pre-divorce, counseling.

    As for all those arguments, they are all self-evidently incoherent and need no rebuttal. Except that I’ll say this: The exact same benefits related arguments would apply to a higher rate of hetero-sexual marriage, say if all those kids “shacking up” decide to tie the knot like the Good Book says.

  • http://www.skepchick.org writerdd

    I wish there were a disease that would wipe out stupid people.

  • http://www.xtra-rant.com Jason

    There is so much wrong with this it is literally impossible to begin to point them all out. Once I begin trying to write any response I get all mad about yet another point of stupidity and lose my place.

  • Siamang

    I wish there were a disease that would wipe out stupid people.

    Hey, if the antivaccination nuts keep up their work, you may just get your wish.

  • Jen

    I stopped reading when I saw the title of his book.

    Well, I didn’t, but I should have.

  • RobL

    His base belief must be that homosexuality is a learned behavior or something straights can be tempted into. Makes me wonder if he is homosexual himself and not admitting it. I cant imagine someone worrying about homosexuality taking over the world this much unless they were fighting those feelings themselves and projecting it on everyone else. Either that or he is just a run of the mill closed minded religious bigot. Pretty silly to think the world is going to end because you legitimize the union of people who are going to live together anyway.

  • RobL

    I wish there were a disease that would wipe out stupid people.

    There are lots of things that kill stupid people, problem is they usually have a chance to procreate before their stupidity catches up with them.

  • Siamang

    Just ridicule it point by point, Jason.

    Like this one:

    e. School Indoctrination of your children into the “normalcy” of homosexuality

    Yep, like I need the school to indoctrinate my child into feeling that her two married grandmothers are “normal”. Can’t we go back to the good old days where they’d be tarred and feathered as freaks?

    f. Preferential adoption to homosexuals at the expense of married couples (Children will be treated as trophies!)

    AHHH!!! TROPHY CHILD!!! TROPHY CHILD!!!! I want a TROPHY CHILD!

    g. Loss of tax-exempt status to organizations that refuse to hire homosexuals

    MMMM….. good idea!

    h. Loss of free speech/religion rights (as is now the case in Sweden and Canada)

    Just like the KKK’s religious rights were violated by the civil rights movement. :rolleyes

    a. Higher medical and insurance premiums

    OH NO!!!! We’d better vote HILLARY and nationalize health care QUICK then!

    Higher taxes to pay for the financial benefits of marriage to homosexuals and the social costs that result from increased illegitimacy (including crime and welfare)

    Because as we all know, getting gay married leads to a life of crime and welfare! I know my neighborhood is overrun by married gay men shaking down old ladies, holding up antique stores and wine shops at gunpoint, and forcing everyone to watch episodes of Will & Grace!!! It’s a MADHOUSE!!!

    c. Reduction of your employee benefits to pay for those of homosexual couples

    Because those people SHOULDN’T get equal benefits to you if they do equal work side by side with you!!! They’re HOMOS!

    Are you sure this guy’s book isn’t titled “I don’t have enough BRAINS to be an atheist”?

  • the Shaggy

    Endorsement will make same-sex marriage the legal and cultural equivalent of traditional marriage.

    I love the assumed “wrongness” in this statement. Just like when people try to say “but don’t you think your atheism will offend God?” as if it actually means anything.

    If none of us think homosexuality is wrong, then why do we care if it is equated with “traditional” marriage.

    h. Loss of free speech/religion rights (as is now the case in Sweden and Canada)

    … oh….. kay….

    *suddenly disappears in a big cloud of restricted free speech.*

    *actually, I didn’t.*

  • Cade

    I agree completely. Marriage is only for producing more children. That’s why we should ban all infertile people from getting married. And any married couple that doesn’t have a kid in 5 years should be put to death. Forget the fact that many gay couples adopt. It makes much more sense to discriminate against a significant portion of society.

  • Tom in Iowa

    But I thought the biggest threat to traditional marriage was divorce. Silly me. I would assume that these “thoughtful” people who want to save civilization would want to start with the BIG problem and outlaw divorce before turning to the little stuff. But what do I know?

    It’s too bad that being stupid isn’t painful.

  • http://mcshaggy.blogspot.com Brett

    h. Loss of free speech/religion rights (as is now the case in Sweden and Canada)

    Up here in Canada, religious wingnuts are allowed to say that gay people are bad. The cool bit is that I get to call them religious wingnuts. Or bigots. Or whatever. They’re not free from their own speech or its consequences, just free to say it.

    I understand that’s more or less the same way it works south of the border, too, right?

    Did I misunderstand his point?

  • Siamang

    I understand that’s more or less the same way it works south of the border, too, right?

    Yep.

    Did I misunderstand his point?

    I think his point is exactly what the wingnuts tell us about healthcare. “They got this same thing in CANADA, and their society is falling APART!!!”

    Because Americans are secretly afraid we’ll turn into Canada.

  • Tom in Iowa

    On the “How would it hurt you” part – just substitute “inter-racial marriage” and you can feel yourself going back 50 years in a time machine. Same arguments then.

    “Loss of free speech/religion rights” Does this mean that members of the KKK are have lost their rights by not being able to lynch people who’s skin is a shade or two darker?

    I’ve gotta get up and go pace around in an agitated manner.

  • Tim Plausible

    Having been through a divorce, I’ve come to see marriage very differently. I think the state is way too involved in marriage – heterosexual or otherwise. People are going to commit to other, and build lives together and start families (or not) as they see fit, no matter what. But there’s this government institution of B.S. layered on top of it, which is artificial, and mired in religious and social traditions based largely around controlling people. Yes, it can provide benefits, but are they all necessary? Couldn’t the important bits be implemented in a simpler way without all the baggage?

    This whole notion of using marriage laws to control how people pair up and split up is horrendous. All it does is hurt people and families. Marriage laws don’t, and never will, change the way people fall in love and choose to live their lives.

    “Imagine there’s no marriage. I wonder if you can.
    No tax implications. No illegitimate children.
    Imagine all the people, loving as they please. Woo-hoo-oo-oo.”

    Of course, I just became engaged again this month. ;)

  • Richard Wade

    This guy is an apologist? Who apologizes for him ? Any Christian with an IQ over 75 should be immediately embarrassed by him. He should re-title his book “I Don’t Have Enough Brains to Be an Atheist.”

  • http://skeptigator.com Skeptigator

    @Tim Plausible (i’m assuming you are a guy)

    “engaged again” ?

    Didn’t you learn your lesson the first time ;) Ooh, zing!

    Seriously, I hope you didn’t get engaged in Cali, I hear they’ll make you marry a gay guy and adopt a trophy child (I hear the blue-eyed, blond haired models are out of stock)

  • Karen Brown

    Everyone knows marriage is for the production of children. So.. I propose the following.

    Everyone getting married has to have a fertility test beforehand. But that’s not enough. So, in the grand old tradition of many cultures already out there, prospective married couples must have sex for a certain period of time (say, three months). If and only if the woman is pregnant at the end, the marriage may proceed. If not, then they can not get married.

    If or when one party becomes no longer capable of reproduction, then the marriage is dissolved. They can live together and raise the children, but no working reproductive organs.. no marriage.

  • http://philipandjenny.com Philip

    It’s very simple: his arguments, aren’t.

    If he was looking to compel the non-religious into disapproving of same-sex marriage, he failed, because he can’t even convince the religious with those arguments.

    If anything, I think there should be a federal marriage amendment banning any whacked Christian apologist from getting married (just kidding, but only slightly).

  • aratina

    Frank Turek is simply wrong about gay couples not being able to procreate. Being gay does not render a person infertile. Even if all couples were same-sex, they could still procreate and raise their own children, they would just make more use of sperm banks and surrogate mothers than many couples already do. And if gay couples can adopt children in need, then what’s the big problem? Cade is right.

  • http://joshuamcharles.com/ Josh Charles

    I learned pretty quickly when reading ‘I Don’t have Enough Faith to be an atheist’ that him and geisler both were fucking idiots who have absolutely no understanding of science, reason, or logic.

    They’re basically just like the ‘new agers’ they claim to detest.

  • Miko

    2. What would be the results to society if every adult lived faithfully in traditional marriage?

    Interesting question. Given the current rates of single adults, this would necessarily involve some sort of government intervention by which people are forced to marry against their will. Incidentally, this would include priests who have taken vows of celibacy. If the adult population was an odd number, one person would have to be killed off to avoid having an unmarried person. To avoid problems with children becoming unmarried adults for a brief period before their government-appointed marriage, we’d also have to either kill all children before they reach adulthood or implement forced-marriages between them while they’re still children. Since “traditional marriage” requires an intention for childbirth, we’d also have to force these children to have sex with each other. Ensuring ‘faithfulness’ would additionally require some sort of totalitarian government surveillance program which would have to involve killing both partners if one was unfaithful, as otherwise the perfect record of faithfulness in every adult couple would be ruined. The long term result would be civil war and the death of every person on the planet. Clearly this is a even slippier slope than that imagined by the anti-gay bigots and so it must be true.

  • Darryl

    Oh, how I love it when the dumb-asses make detailed predictions! What will happen if gays can marry? We’re about to find out. Oh, what embarrassment the doom-sayers will suffer when absolutely NOTHING BAD HAPPENS, AND GOOD STUFF DOES! Kudos to the supreme court of CA. By the way, I’m guessing that the Governator is breathing a secret sigh of relief that he doesn’t have to keep pretending to be morally outraged by the idea of legal homosexual marriage.

  • http://kbarrett.cotse.net/idiot Kristopher

    There is a simple solution to this … ban state-sanctioned marriage.

    Marriage should be a contract signing, an exchange of powers-of-attorney, and if desired, a ceremony.

    If someone wants to get extremely far right about this … I don’t see any mention of the term “married” in the Constitution.

  • Steven

    Siamang said:

    “Because Americans are secretly afraid we’ll turn into Canada.”

    Some Canadians are secretly afraid we’ll turn into America. I’m not worried about it – we’re too busy trying to stay warm (maybe that’s the real reason that same-sex marriage is legal in Canada – conservation of body heat).

    California is welcome to join Canada’s confederation, and we’ll take Florida too.

  • http://www.chickengirl.net/ Chicken Girl

    I don’t think these idiots understand the concept of “diff’rent strokes for diff’rent folks”, as evidenced by their apparent conviction that gays are determined to make everyone else gay and if gay marriage is legal, then everyone will be required to be in one.

    For Pete’s sake, they haven’t even ever heard of Loving v. Virginia, and yet here we are again, the same kind of bigotry the Lovings had to deal with. Those who refuse to learn from history will be doomed to repeat it. >.<

  • Cindy

    You can have Florida….for free! But you have to take their creationists and Republicans, as well.
    But won’t Florida look funny sticking off the edge of Canada?

  • emilyelle

    Loss of free speech and religion rights in Canada? Hell no, i see waaay more liberty here concerning those things than in America.

  • Shaded Spriter

    Yes Free Speech is dead in Sweden home of the Mohammad Dog. Also that reminds me – Dogma Free America had an interview with Lars Wilks (sorry If i spelt his name wrong) Artist who created the Mohammad Dog drawings.

  • Karen

    Oh gawd, I have to go bang my head against a wall for a while after reading that idiocy. ARgh…

    If or when one party becomes no longer capable of reproduction, then the marriage is dissolved. They can live together and raise the children, but no working reproductive organs.. no marriage.

    Quite seriously, I ran up against an old-school Catholic a few months ago who was making that argument in all sincerity. He truly believed that married couples who chose not to have children (for any reason at all) were “shirking their duty to society” and should not be permitted the legal rights of marriage. He was kind enough (urp…) to let infertile couples off the hook, but if folks used birth control to prevent conception because they didn’t think they’d make good parents, were concerned about overpopulation, or whatever – they were traitors, and worse, in this guy’s mind.

    It’s un-freaking-believable what people think. And religion seems to take moderately-kooky people and give them the rational to become complete nuts.

  • jdcollins

    I will attempt to answer the questions he poses:

    1. For what secular purpose does the state endorse traditional marriage (i.e. what benefits does the state experience from traditional marriage)?

    To be honest, I don’t think many, really. I mean, married people get a tax break. My state (FL) doesn’t because we don’t pay State Income Taxes, (because we’re stupid) but I haven’t found how my state benefits from my marriage.

    2. What would be the results to society if every adult lived faithfully in traditional marriage?

    Well, if it were a faithful traditional marriage, I assume that the divorce rate would decrease drastically. However, all those singles bars would shut down and the owners would be out of business. So, I guess, literally hundreds of people across the US would lose their jobs.

    3. What would be the results to society if every adult lived faithfully in same-sex marriage?

    I imagine there would be a lot fewer mini-vans on the road, which would help with traffic flow problems. Also, buildings and bridges wouldn’t be built in those drab black and gray. So a total infrastructure face-lift and less traffic.

    4. In light of your answers above, should the state legally equate heterosexual and homosexual relationships by endorsing same sex marriage?

    I don’t think so. It seems to me that heterosexual marriages cause people to lose their jobs, and homosexual marriages turn our cities more artsy. I believe, therefore, that all gays should be forced to marry, just so they can liven up the place a bit.

  • bernarda

    Frank Baby would have a stroke if he read Victoria Woodhull from the 19th century.

    “Victoria Woodhull’s great virtue and her great failing were one and the same — her refusal to remain silent about the sexual empowerment of women and about the sexual hypocrisy she saw all around her among important political figures of her day, both within and outside the suffrage movement. Frequently overtaken by the “spirits” from whom she drew her inspiration, she insisted on speaking uncompromisingly about what she believed and, when hypocritically attacked for her sexual views, about the dalliances of the people around her.

    With regard to women’s sexual appetites, she was both indignant and uncompromising: “Some women seem to glory over the fact that they never had any sexual desire and to think that desire is vulgar. What! Vulgar!… Vulgar rather must be the mind that can conceive such blasphemy. No sexual passion, say you. Say, rather, a sexual idiot, and confess your life is a failure… It is not the possession of strong sexual powers that is to be deprecated. They are a necessary part of human character… they are the foundation upon which civilization rests.”

    With regard to marriage, Woodhull was equally outspoken: “Why do I war upon marriage…. because it is, I verily believe, the most terrible curse from which humanity now suffers, entailing more misery, sickness, and premature death than all other causes combined…. Sanctioned and defended by marriage, night after night there are thousands of rapes committed…. There was never a servitude in the world like this one of marriage.”

    http://www.sexuality.org/authors/steinberg/cn70.html

  • Krista

    I am so offended by this I feel sick. I could just cry. I’m upset.

  • http://www.bernerbits.com Derek

    Loss of free speech and religion rights in Canada? Hell no, i see waaay more liberty here concerning those things than in America.

    Ah, you misunderstood the original quote. “Free Speech” to these types means “Freedom for Christians to mercilessly harass people who believe differently” and “Freedom of Religion” means “Freedom for Christians to push their religion on everyone”. Many of them sincerely believe that this is all these terms have ever meant. Read those translations into the original, and it will start to make a whole lot more sense…

  • Xeonicus

    You know what the real issue is? It’s really none of the thousands of half-assed rationalizations and arguments that have been used to convince people to oppose same-sex marriage. The real issue: Marriage is a token part of Christianity and they feel a sense of ownership to the institution of marriage. It’s “their’s” and they don’t want any of those devil worshiping gays treading all over it.

    Christians need to stop making up B.S. excuses and just be frank.

  • http://www.otmatheist.com/ hoverFrog

    With marriage not culturally necessary for having children, cohabitation and illegitimacy will rise to historic highs

    I didn’t realise that marriage was a cultural prerequisite for having children. I really wish someone had mentioned this to me. It may have stopped us from remaining in a stable, monogamous relationship and rising our children together.

    If a white, middle class, heterosexual professional like me doesn’t give a shit about “cultural necessity” bullshit does he really think that a gay, lesbian or transgendered person does?

  • Daktar

    Wow. Just wow. Is there anyway that guy’s statement and arguments could be anymore disconnected? How in the world does legalising homosexual marriage push up the health and insurance premiums of a place?

    Oh, and as for his statement about the Swedish losing their rights to free speech…

    http://www.lu.se/o.o.i.s/11667

    …doesn’t seem to have done them any harm.

  • http://journals.aol.ca/plittle/AuroraWalkingVacation/ Paul

    He has made the traditional mistake when thinking about Homosexuality, in that he believes being homosexual is only about sex. The reason for that, of course, is that he cannot stop thinking about the sex part of a homosexual relationship. He’s the messed up one in this equation.

  • Robin

    This Turek dude is a tool.

  • http://mcshaggy.blogspot.com Brett

    Forget what Steven said. You guys can keep Florida. I’d rather have Washington anyway. Maybe Oregon.

    Actually, let’s just take the whole left coast.

    And Hawaii.

  • http://blog.lib.umn.edu/fole0091/epistaxis/ Epistaxis

    Wait, what’s “traditional marriage?” According to the Bible, it might involve polygamy and/or incest.

  • http://www.silentdave.net Dave

    If you’ve made any sort of attempt to participate in discussion on his blog, you’ll know that he doesn’t really want discussion. He wants people to agree with him. He wants sycophants. Particularly on this issue, it seems — he wants people to express agreement so that it’ll be easier for him to squelch the tiny little voice deep down in his heart that says no, it is NOT okay to be homophobic and bigoted. And since other homophobes need to do the same thing, he’ll have enough takers, I think.

    Hemant, you introduced me to Turek’s blog a couple weeks ago, and ever since then I’ve felt dirty and slimy and a few IQ points stupider. Damn you for that. I’ve summarized my experience here: http://www.silentdave.net/?p=23

  • Gabriel Brawley

    Well I came home the other day and divorced my wife. Then I walked down to the 7-eleven and held it up at gunpoint. I beat the chilrdern. Kicked the dog. Set fire to a couple of random houses. Grabbed the first cute guy I saw and flew off to California to get married. I didn’t want to do any of this but now that gays can get married I didn’t have a choice. I mean I can’t be held responsible for my actions if gays can marry. I loved my wife and was planning to stay with her for the rest of our lives but I couldn’t. I mean gays are allowed to marry. What can I do?

  • Iztok

    Preferential adoption to homosexuals at the expense of married couples (Children will be treated as trophies!)

    While I can only tell numbers for North Carolina I am sure situation in US is about the same. There are close to 11,000 kids in foster care in NC at this point. I can assure you that there is not a line of heterosexual married couples waiting to adopt majority of these kids. Most of them will age out of the system at the age of 18. The chances of a kid older then 10 years to get adopted is about 4%.

    Position: Adoptive parent of a 16 year old daughter.

  • mark

    Hey, we should put together a list of the harm to society that follows because we allow churches to exist and be involved in politics while avoiding paying their fair share of taxes.

    1. The taxes of the rest of us has to go up to compensate for the taxes the church isn’t paying.

    2. Churches illegally act as political action committees thus robbing you of your share of influence on the political process.

    3. Churches cover up child molesting priests in order to protect their “reputation” at the expense of innocent children in the community.

    4. Churches foster hate and violence in the name of God which is a threat to the general safety of the community.

    5. Churches cause medical harm to innocent people by encouraging them to pray instead of seeking proper medical attention.

    6. Churches harm the quality of education in the community by home schooling children by untrained and unqualified parents.

    7. Churches do harm to the advancement of science by arresting people such as Galileo who make major breakthroughs in our understanding of the universe.

    8. Churches harm the poor and the starving when the vatican hords billions in valuable historical artifacts, buildings and land when they could be sold and the money used to feed the poor around the world.

    What other harm to the community do churches pose and thus justify their not being allowed to legally exist? Feel free to add to this list.

  • http://www.otmatheist.com hoverFrog

    Why should the state endore marriage as a religious institution?

    Why should the church endorse marriage as a legal contract?

    Should’t the legal and religious aspects of a decision to wed be seperate and distinct?

  • http://www.myspace.com/timandjeffrey Tim D.

    I’ve been posting on that guy’s site for a couple of days now, and I have to say I’m troubled by his mannerisms. Of course, I’m always troubled by people who refuse to acknowledge scientific developments beyond the 1960′s and 70′s….you know, back during the era when people were so stupid, they thought only gays could get AIDS?

    I’m serious; it’s like people just look for things that some gay people do that offend them, and then try to say that they’re against gay people. It’s a lot like those people who read select parts of the Bible and decide that they agree with those parts, and so they must be Christian. I don’t even think they get it….


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