"Without God we would be governed by the biggest, strongest, meanest or ugliest of us" was the claim Greg Magnuson previously made in the Beacon. Then last week, after the biggest and strongest Church lost another battle against same-sex marriage, Magnuson veered toward the meanest and ugliest... writing, "Making it legal does not make homosexual marriage any less adultery."
This statement demonstrates two things. First, freedom of speech is alive and well. Contrary to fears dispensed by opponents of gay marriage, including our local Catholic Church, gay speech by the parishioner or the pulpit was never in danger of legal restrictions - even for speech that might be considered hateful. And second, such speech demonstrates that even decisions by Minnesota voters and the Supreme Court will not end this sort of bigotry.
The word adultery has a long history. Today adultery typically means sexual intercourse outside of an existing marriage. In the Old Testament, God prescribed death for adulterers - with, of course, loop holes for men. In the New Testament, Jesus makes uninspiring teachings regarding adultery - such as declaring adultery to include most divorces as well as marrying a divorced woman.
How, in this day, Mr. Magnuson applies any such adultery definitions to a broad category of marriages would seem nonsensical. What reader would not interpret such speech as an attempt to vilify gay relationships? Which brings me back to hate speech... and its definition: "communication that vilifies a person or a group based on discrimination against that person or group."
Pew research just completed a large survey of LGBT Americans. One survey question asked was how friendly certain groups were perceived towards LGBT people. Here; Mr. Magnuson might pause to observe the reaping from the sowing - for competing for the bottom (and indeed, a very low bottom) of the LGBT friendly groups were: the Republican Party (4%), the Catholic Church (4%), Evangelical churches (3%), the Mormon Church (2%), and the Muslim religion (1%). So explain to me again... how is God stopping the biggest and strongest from being the meanest and ugliest?