On the Wrong Side of God, Evolution & Humanity
by Frank Turek
We’ve been told that people who want to maintain the man-woman definition of marriage are “on the wrong side of history.” Perhaps they are correct. Maybe “history,” which is determined largely by how people behave, will continue to move toward defining marriage as genderless in the 90 percent of governments that still maintain the natural definition. But what’s the take-away? Jump on the bandwagon?
Remember, Moses was on the wrong side of the golden calf. And Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was on the wrong side of Dred Scott — the 1857 Supreme Court decision that declared blacks were “so far inferior that they had no rights.” Being on the wrong side of some popular moral assertion doesn’t mean your position is wrong.
Now that five judges say that same-sex marriage is a new “right,” let’s ask a more foundational question. Where do rights come from? Specifically, where does the right to same-sex marriage come from?
If you say that rights come from governments or constitutions, how can they really be rights? Isn’t a right something you have regardless of what a government says? For example, if same-sex marriage is really a right, then you actually possess that right even if you live under a government that doesn’t recognize same-sex marriage. You may not be able to exercise it, but you have it nonetheless.
Moreover, if there is no overarching moral standard that transcends human governments, then how could we prosecute Nazi soldiers for violating the rights of others? The Nazis were just following their government.
The truth is, rights don’t come from men or governments. Instead, “to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men,” as our Founders wrote in the Declaration of Independence. In fact, that was the entire point of the Declaration — the government of King George was usurping the rights of colonists, so we declared our independence.
Some argue that evolutionary theory provides us with a right to same-sex marriage, but one doesn’t even have to challenge evolutionary theory to see that something is wrong with that argument…
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