Archbishop Timothy Dolan, of the New York Archdiocese, has penned a “defense of marriage” blog which deserves a point by point examination. It’s so loaded with falsehoods, bigotry, and hate that I would be doing a disservice not to dissect it in detail. (Read it in its entirety HERE.)
The media, mainly sympathetic to this rush to tamper with a definition as old as human reason and ordered good, reports annoyance on the part of some senators that those in defense of traditional marriage just don’t see the light, as we persist in opposing this enlightened, progressive, cause.
Falsehood number one. Marriage — solely between a man and a woman — is not as old as human reason. The good father need only open his Bible to discover his error. Most specifically, the Bible instructs followers of Christ to take wives. (GE 31:17, GE 36:6, DT 21:15, JG 8:30, SA 5:13, KI 11:3, CH 14:3, CH 11:21, 13:21) There are several ways to do this, but the easiest is to lie in wait (preferably in a vineyard) until an attractive young lass comes by on her way to a dance. Kidnap her, rape her, and marry her. (LINK)
But we need not refer to the Bible alone to discover that “one man, one woman” is not ubiquitous through history. The Greeks, though they required property-owning men to marry only one woman, condoned and even expected men to pursue their polygamous needs with courtesans and prostitutes, who did not carry the same kind of stigma they do today. Well-to-do Greek men routinely kept mistresses openly. (LINK)
The Greeks also condoned (and even encouraged) gay sex, though not in the context of hereditary marriage, since marriage was strictly for the purpose of passing property. Boys were expected to experience both male and female love in their proper time. (Teen boys and girls generally learned the “art” of sex with members of their own sex first.) It’s also important to notice that while adult gay sex was problematic in Greek culture, it was not because it was gay. It was because an adult male was assuming a passive role. The aggressive — penetrative — male role was perfectly acceptable. Along with male-female partners outside of hereditary marriage, male-male partners were common.
But lest we begin to think that marriage is always hereditary and heterosexual, there’s that troubling (and ancient) society over there in French Polynesia, where genitals do not dictate a person’s role in either society or marriage.
Finally, one need only look at anthropology for the definitive word. Out of 1231 cultures, exactly 186 advocate monogamous man/woman marriage exclusively.