Higher Ground is there for you if you’re seeking guidance in today’s changing world. Everett Piper, a Ph.D. and a former university president and radio host, is writing an advice column for The Times, and he wants to hear from you. If you have any moral or ethical questions for which you’d like an answer, please email email@example.com, and he may include it in the column.
DEAR DR. E: Before Obergefell, you couldn’t have convinced me to vote for a Democrat if you tried. To me, the LGBTQIA+ agenda was just too big to ignore. Supporting a candidate that was pro-gay or pro-trans was inconceivable. However, I have come to realize that creating laws against these things isn’t the solution. We must operate within the framework we’re in and not legislate against it. Love, not legislation, is the answer.” — BIG TENT REPUBLICAN IN SOUTH DAKOTA
DEAR BIG TENT: Your question implies a couple of issues ranging from identity to legislation to love. I’ll try to touch on each of them with some very brief comments.
First, I have to start by pointing out a major ontological flaw in your argument. The gay and trans issue is about behavior and not identity, pure and simple. As Gore Vidal said, “There is no more such thing as a homosexual person than there is a heterosexual person. These are behavioral adjectives.” Those who use their desires and predispositions (sexual or otherwise) as a pretext for their identity are guilty of a non sequitur fallacy to the extreme.
A non sequitur is an argument of non-connection where your conclusion doesn’t logically flow from your premise. In layman’s terms, it is a fallacy of “So what?” Let me offer a couple of examples. If I cheat on my wife and justify it by saying all men are genetically predisposed to infidelity, you should respond, “So what?’ If I am always angry and say I’m biologically predisposed to emotional outbursts, it would be more than fair for you to say, “So what?” And, if I use my desire to steal as justification for larceny, you’d be well within your rights to say, “So what?
In all these examples, it really doesn’t matter what you’re inclined to do. Human identity has never been about our inclinations. Otherwise, why wouldn’t those inclined to racism, hatred, and a host of other bad behaviors be as justified in demanding minority status as any other sub-group? We all desire to do a lot of things that we can choose not to do. We aren’t defined by those desires.
Now, let’s address your claim: “We have to operate within the framework that we are in and not legislate against it.” Well, let me ask this: Should William Wilberforce have responded the same way to the British slave trade? How about Martin Luther King, Jr.? Should he have accepted the framework of his day and not worked to legislate against it? Or what of Abraham Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation? I could go on and on. The argument that you can’t legislate morality is a bit empty. All legislation assumes some moral standard; otherwise, the entire process would be meaningless.
Finally, you suggest that love, not legislation, is the answer to all that ails our nation. If you really believe this, I’d argue that minimizing traditional Judeo-Christian standards isn’t the best way to elevate your argument. In fact, history is replete with examples of how Christian fidelity has brought more love and justice to women and children than any other worldview. If the daily news tells us anything, the male libido knows no bounds without the boundaries of Christ.
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