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ScottMoral Values

1/19/04 For those of you who have put the election, along with terms like "right-wing nut job," behind you, here's a little piece of nostalgic insanity, via the Washington Post:

President Bush came under fire from some social conservatives yesterday for saying he will not aggressively lobby the Senate to pass a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage during his second term.

Prominent leaders such as Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, and many rank-and-file Bush supporters inundated the White House with phone calls to protest Bush's comments in an interview published Sunday in The Washington Post. "Clearly there is concern" among conservatives, Perkins said. "I believe there is no more important issue for the president's second term than the preservation of marriage."

If this guy believes restricting the rights of gays is the most important issue for the President in the next four years, I think his entire belief system is due for a reality check.

In other news, Iraq is an inescapable quagmire that has lost the support of a majority of Americans, Afghanistan isn't much better, Iran is already posturing amid a new investigative report that said the Pentagon is performing reconnaissance missions in preparation for a new "regime change," prisoners are still having their human rights violated every day in Guantanamo, and our foreign relations are in such shambles that we've been told to leave some of the areas devastated by the Tsunami in South Asia as soon as possible.

But, oh my God! Gays are getting rights!

No sir, I don't want to hear any more of this nonsense about moral values. If people want to talk about moral values then they should be debating the morality of the war in Iraq, which has claimed the lives of somewhere between 16,000 and 100,000 Iraqi civilians. How many people have been killed because of gay marriage?

Where are these "moral leaders" in debating the ongoing and illegal imprisonment of detainees in Guantanamo and other prisons around the world? We have held them for so long that the military is asking to have beds installed so that the detainees can make themselves at home (their old home was probably bombed anyway). We're holding some of these people without trials, without evidence, and we don't even expect to get information from them! I'm not sure which moral value it is that has allowed these people to be held in purgatory, but it's one that deserves more attention than homophobia.

And yes, it is homophobia that is driving people like Perkins. It's the same ridiculous fear that led the U.S. Military to discharge 20 Arabic speakers between 1998 and 2004, during which time there was a desperate need for translators. The military decided that gays were a greater threat than an armed, Arab mob to our brave, straight soldiers. Forget moral values - that's just stupidity.

I suppose this has been the basis of my complaining against all of this "defending the sanctity of marriage" talk from the beginning: Who is hurt when a gay couple is married? I'm sure people like Perkins have a bag full of prepared answers, but here's my point: Gays didn't attack America on September 11, 2001; Gays are not working on a nuclear program; and gays did not abuse the prisoners at Abu Ghraib.

Much less than being the most important issue of Bush's second term, this so-called "preservation of marriage" movement is so insignificant and against the ideals of America that it should be dropped completely. The Republicans are going to have to go after extremists like Perkins or else they will risk being dealt long-lasting damage to their reputation as a whole party.

Read other articles written by Scott Zuke