The Terms of our Surrender

The Anchoress notes the rank hypocrisy of the gay hair stylist who refuses to serve the New Mexico Gov’s hair as penalty for her failure to approve of homosex. How is this different from Christians who don’t want to be forced to participate in things that suggest approval for homosex, she wonders?

Well, it’s no different except for one thing: people who oppose homosex as sinful have lost a power struggle and those who approve of it have won and those who approve of it have no actual interest in justice, but simply in power. And so, as Ross Douthat points out, we are now in the phase of history where we are simply going to have dictated to us the terms of our surrender. Those terms will not be predicated on justice or even logic. They will be predicated on vengeance and punishment and whatever unchecked power can get away with. We are talking about a subculture whose primary feature is narcissism. You can point out illogic all you like, but capricious power has no interest in logic. And Public Enemy No. 1 will be the Catholic Church for these people.

  • Colin Gormley

    One of the trends I’ve noticed is the conversion of racism from prejudice against another race to “something evil white people do”. I see something similar in this. The exact behavior condemned in Christians is ignored or praised.

  • SteveP

    Surrender? NUTS!

  • kenofken

    From a legal standpoint, the actions of the hairdresser are vastly different from those of a wedding photographer who might refuse his business. Under many local and state laws now, sexual orientation is a specific category under civil rights and related public accommodations laws. Fundamental to the whole concept of civil rights law is that it comes with no astererisks. That means you can’t say “gay (black, Jewish etc.) money doesn’t spend here” There’s no exceptions to that. You can’t honor it just when you feel like it or when it agrees with your conscience or on prime numbered Tuesdays in months that end in “r”.

    Civil rights law is utterly meaningless if it’s optional. An optional civil right is not a right, it’s a privilege, an indulgence that can be withdrawn at any time for reasons petty or seemingly noble. At least one court has rejected the idea that refusing gay wedding business is discrimination against the act, not the actors. The discrimination arises from nowhere else than the participant’s orientation. That would be different, in theory, if significant numbers of straight people entered same sex marriages just for benefits. In that case, you could say “I don’t do same sex weddings” and as long as you applied it to all, or made no effort to discover anyone’s orientation, it would probably fly.

    The hairdresser’s actions, while petty, are not legally equivalent. It’s not illegal,as far as I know, to discriminate against anyone because of their politics or votes as an elected official. If he had told the governor “I’m not cutting the hair of any damn Christian,” that would be different.

    Those who don’t like the tenor of pay-back and triumphalism in the SSM issue need to recall the old wisdom of sowing and reaping. The gay rights movement has had its share of people who were shrill and petty from day one, but they are not, by far, the only creators of this rancor. At every last step since the gay rights movement launched with Stonewall, their opponents have prosecuted their fight with every bit of viciousness and bile they could muster. LGBT folk’s grievance has to do with a hell of a lot more than people not pronouncing gay sex an intrinsic good. For 40 years (much longer really), their opponents have fought to imprison them, to destroy their ability to earn a livelihood, to deny them even the most rudimentary forms of legal equity in family matters, to define them as pedophiles and deviants of every sort, to demean them and make their lives a living hell in any way that they could.

    When the anti-SSM forces had the upper hand in the public arena, they were ruthless. As fortunes and public opinion changed, they sought to burn every field and poison every well as they retreated, turning up the ugly rhetoric and drafting every measure possible to try to erode any sense of dignity and equality gays fought to earn. None of this is ancient history. All of it is in living memory of anyone Generation X or older. Stuff like DADT and Lawrence V. Texas and DOMA was the day before yesterday in historical terms. The vicious invective and war of attrition posture by the anti-SSM movement is not history at all. It is current events.

    On what rational basis would you expect gays to be suddenly magnanimous and generous and good-natured in this new era? Anyone who has been treated the way many of you have treated them would have to be Christ, a rare saint or a complete idiot to turn the other cheek and offer nice terms of surrender to an enemy who wants no peace.

    Back when war had a genteel facade, the surrendering officer gave over his sword to the victors. It was then returned in recognition of the defeated officer’s honor, but with the mutual understanding that that the fight was over. No officer with any sense would extend such a courtesy to an enemy who refused to acknowledge the outcome of the battle and who was likely to attack with the returned weapon. Honorable Surrender required that the defeated force accept reality – before the bloody end – and that the victors refrain from payback or humiliation.

    The anti-SSM movement needs to decide if it wants honorable surrender. If it does, surrender and act honorably toward your opponents, and they are obliged to offer honorable terms. If not, quit whining and accept that defeat finds you on its own terms, not yours.

    • SteveP

      What do barbarians know of honor or integrity? Taking another’s patrimony, the freedom to associate for whatever reason they see fit – you know, diverse reasons – does not make you equal. It makes you a thief.

      • kenofken

        If they’re thieves and barbarians without a shred of honor in them, why is there such constant whining about how they’re not playing fair?

        • SteveP

          Hoping juveniles mature is not an ill-founded stance. However distasteful it may be, the adults must act to isolate the affectively immature until such time as they can join adult culture as an equal.

    • Rosemarie

      Rosemarie’s Husband Replies:

      So basically it’s about power and revenge for lunatics like you? It’s never about rights, justice or FairPlay or honor?

      Based on this insane logic Blacks will never truly be free till they don black bed sheets themselves and set fire to crosses on white people’s lawns?

      So to avenge injustice done to yourselves you will now become what you perceive your enemy to be?

      Then in the end all you have done is justify his oppression over you & start the cycle again when you fall from power and are at the mercy of those you treated with no mercy.

      Ghandi and Martin Luther King knew the cycle of hate must be broken.

      You have so failed them right now.

    • Rosemarie

      Rosemarie’s Husband Replies additionally:

      >The hairdresser’s actions, while petty, are not legally equivalent. It’s not illegal,as far as I know, to discriminate against anyone because of their politics or votes as an elected official.

      In other words some animals are more equal then others?

      Let me not keep you from your lavender/brown shirt meeting.


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