Behind today's push for homosexual marriage lies a detailed plan to deconstruct American society from top to bottom abolishing marriage, the family, and the Judeo-Christian basis of our civilization.
The gay activists get the publicity, but the serious work is being done behind the scenes by academic feminists. They have a plan for America , and they have clearly articulated it in print, at public meetings, and in their classrooms.
Not since Adolf Hitler wrote Mein Kampf has a blueprint for revolution been so openly laid out. The world ignored Mein Kampf , with disastrous results. Will America likewise ignore the published aims of radical feminists?
Depraved New World
Philosophically, these revolutionaries are the children of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the 18 th century Swiss savant who proclaimed, "Man is born free, but is everywhere in chains." Human nature is not the problem, Rousseau taught; basic human nature is good. Our problems all originate from our social, political, and economic institutions, which are corrupt and restrictive. Note the inherent illogic of this position. If we are by nature good and wise, then why are the institutions we create bad and foolish?
Christians believe in original sin, which explains why fallen human beings cannot create perfect institutions. Feminists and gay activists, however, believe they can create a virtually perfect society. But first they must deconstruct the existing society. This means, in their view, that "bad" and "restrictive" institutions like marriage, family, and Christianity must be torn down like derelict buildings to make room for the better, freer institutions.
According to these radicals, we may all be innately wise and good, but the wisest and the best of us are an elite of feminists and gay activists. As Thomas Sowell explains in The Vision of the Anointed , these elitists believe strongly that their exclusive possession of the truth authorizes them to say and do anything to promote their policies. This is why they habitually resort to the courts rather than subject their schemes to the uncertainties of legislation or election. After all, the non-anointed will probably get it wrong.
So we are dealing with people who assign to themselves the perfection of God -- that is, they put themselves in the place of God -- and believe the end justifies the means.
Meet the Ms.
This spring, Hofstra University on Long Island , New York , hosted a conference on "Marriage, Democracy, and Families."1 The participants included the elite of America 's family law profession, many of whom are lesbians and radical feminists.
Of particular note was a panel discussion, "Intimate Affiliations and Democracy: Beyond Marriage?" Panelists included:
- Martha Fineman, Professor of Feminist Jurisprudence at Cornell University , author of The Neutered Mother
- Martha Ertman, University of Utah law professor, Gender Studies, University of Southern California
- Judith Stacey, former Barbra Streisand Professor of Contemporary Gender Studies, University of Southern California
- Linda McClain, law professor at Cornell, author of "Toward a Formative Project of Securing Freedom and Equality."
Who are these people? They are respected, highly paid professors at prestigious universities. Some of them are on a career track that can lead to a federal judgeship, as was the case for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
They are teachers and trainers of future lawyers and judges, founders and members of legal advocacy groups (such as Fineman's Feminism and Legal Theory Project), authors whose works are regularly published in America 's law journals. You won't see them on television, nor will you find their writings in the popular press. But if they are invisible to the public, they constitute what Hoover Fellow Stanley Kurtz calls the power elite of American family law. As such, they are in a strong position to influence public policy -- especially through the courts.
What Do They Want?
What, specifically, do they want?
First, an end to marriage. "The institution is a failure," Fineman says in the SCU Law Review . Indeed, according to Fineman, traditional marriage is "plagued with violence" against women and "inappropriate for many people in today's world."2 The family, says Ertman, is "exploitive," and not "normatively superior to domestic partnerships."3
"Gay marriage," for them, is only a step toward the goal of abolishing marriage altogether. This makes good sense to Washington Post columnist Michael Kinsley.4 Rather than fall into endless debate over gay marriage, "That solution is to end the institution of marriage." Family law revolutionaries ignore the public debate and seek ends well beyond gay marriage. In place of traditional marriage, they would, in Professor Stacey's words, completely "redesign" kinship "with creativity and verve."5
Between them, Fineman and Ertman have developed a scheme to replace marriage by treating every "intimate affiliation -- any relationship involving any number of consenting adults, as a legal contract among private parties, subject to enforcement by the courts as other contracts" say, between a swimming pool owner and a cleaning service, are enforced. Existing contract law could be adapted for this purpose.
At the same time, Fineman proposes government subsidies and income guarantees to all "caregivers" in a "universal" welfare payment that would be granted "regardless of other sources of caretaker wealth."6 In her book, The Neutered Mother , she says "motherhood" should no longer be confined to women, but be open to all. Thus, almost anyone, in her view, might qualify as a "caregiver" and so be eligible for benefits. Under this scheme, two or more unwed mothers could declare themselves "married" and instantly qualify for benefits, including paid health care. Meanwhile, Fineman wants government "to regulate and standardize" wages and benefits.
The goal of this is to establish, as a basis for organizing American society, "polyamory." Polyamory, according to Ertman, takes many forms, including polygamy, polyandry, group marriage, and assorted gay and lesbian ménages -- myriad variations."7 Family law, she says, should recognize polyamory. Otherwise, the law would be guilty of "impos[ing] norms of sexual fidelity and continuous cohabitation" -- in other words, of forging chains for people who are born free.8
The gay marriage campaign is only a camel's nose in the tent. The camel itself is a wholesale deconstruction of society in favor of polyamory and an economy based on a massive welfare pyramid.
One need hardly say that such a re-engineering of society is incompatible with Christian doctrine and tradition. The question for Christians is: How far can these trends go before their proponents demand more absurd hate speech laws, penalties for churches that refuse to perform "gay marriage" ceremonies, restrictions on Christian homeschooling, and an end to the church itself as one more "restrictive" social institution?
It must be said that all of the above are already under discussion among the Left's anointed.
1. Stanley Kurtz, "Beyond Gay Marriage," The Weekly Standard , August 4-11, 2003, www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/002/938xpsxy.asp.
2. Martha Fineman, "The Nature of Dependencies and Welfare Reform," Ethics Connection (Santa Clara University: Santa Clara Law Review, 2003) www.scu.edu/ethics/publications/other/lawreview/dependencies.html.
3. Martha Ertman, "The ALI Principles' Approach to Domestic Partnership," Duke Journal of Gender Law Duke University Press, No. 107, www.law.duke.edu/journals/djglp/articles/gen8p107.htm.
4. Michael Kinsley, Washington Post, July 3, 2003, www.washingtonpost.com.
5. Judith Stacey, "Fellow Families," a lecture given at New York University , Feb. 27, 2002. usc.edu/dept/sociology/info/staceynet.pdf.
6. Fineman, ibid.
7. Ertman, ibid.
- Lee Duigon
Lee is the author of the Bell Mountain Series of novels and a contributing editor for our Faith for All of Life magazine. Lee provides commentary on cultural trends and relevant issues to Christians, along with providing cogent book and media reviews.
Lee has his own blog at www.leeduigon.com.