One Small Victory in Defense of Free Speech
Beauty pageants are not really my area but the Miss USA pageant became politicized thanks to the agendas of competing special interests in California. The ever flamboyant and always outrageous Perez Hilton ignited this situation when he bated Carrie Prejean with a question on gay marriage. Ms. Prejean’s answer was clearly qualified as her own personal opinion.
She answered,”I think it’s great that Americans are able to choose one or the other. We live in a land where you can choose same-sex marriage or opposite marriage. And you know what? I think in my country, in my family, I think that I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there, but that’s how I was raised.” Not exactly a smooth answer but she was stating her opinion. Hilton wasted no time launching a personal attack on her. The same day he released a video blog declaring her a “dumb bitch.” Pro-traditional marriage groups responded by co-opting Ms. Prejean for their cause. What a mess.
Disagree with me and you’re a Nazi. Bitch.
Hilton’s comments offend me as an American. Certainly he was offended that Prejean didn’t agree with his views but his attack was akin to a schoolyard brat, stomping his feet and yelling out vicious names. Those who defended his temper tantrum or joined him in hurling personal insults, such as the anti-intellectual Michael Musto, who compared her to Nazi, Klaus Barbie, (who killed 4,000 people,) exhibited their lack of skill in debating the issue. It has been my consistent position that name-callers do so because they lack logical ground from which to make their argument. For example where is the moral equivalency between murdering 4,000 or more human beings and meekly admitting that while she respects that homosexuals can marry, she believes marriage is a traditional institution. As I recall President Obama said much the same thing during the campaign and no one batted an eye. Except maybe the candidate when he followed the comment with a knowing wink. (You didn’t see it? Ok, I made it up but I’m sure it was there somewhere.)
What’s the issue?
For me, there are two points here, first, freedom of speech. Do we have it or not? Second, what is marriage? Let’s begin with the latter. I think gay activists don’t understand that marriage is. It is a religious institution. Certainly it has been co-opted by the government for legal reasons, but at its heart, marriage is a religious institution. Religions, as a whole, take a natural law position on sex and family. After all, marriage is essentially about sex, procreation, and child development. Additionally, marriage bonds two people legally, creating complications and conflict if and when the contract is terminated. I believe these legal bonds exist to ensure that children and dependent spouses are provided for in the event the bread-winner decides to hit the road. (Anyone who is or has been married can attest that marriage is no wonderland fantasy life. Do these people understand what they are asking for? But I digress.)
Why is marriage so important to homosexuals? I think, it’s because doing so, thrusts acceptance upon mainstream Americans. Tolerance no longer appears to be the goal, rather the goal seems to have shifted to acceptance or perhaps even embracement (Is that a word? If not I coin it here.) As a proponent of natural law I do not accept the idea that homosexuals are born predisposed to it. I have been friends with several homosexuals both male and female. Over the course of our friendly exchanges I have always become aware of intense hurt or other trauma in that person’s past. I refuse to condemn gays and lesbians, I’ll let God deal with them. I have my own sins to deal with, and I’ll not make deliberately alienating people away from faith one of them.
(In case you’re scratching your head, wondering where I stand on this issue… I don’t support gay marriage under the argument that marriage is a religious institution for procreation . Gays are biologically incapable of procreation, thus they do not fit the criteria of the institution. If our society is bent on embracing the homosexual lifestyle then marriage needs to be divorced from its legal status. In that case, I think it should be wholly replaced by civil unions and marriage should become a separate religious union between a male and a female partner.)
Is there is no right to debate?
Now, I have exercised my right to free speech as defined in the Bill of Rights. However, people like Hilton, Musto, Jessica Yellin, Jane Velez-Mitchell, Giuliana Rancic, and Matt Lauer apparently don’t believe in free speech – at least other people’s right to free speech. They attempt to make the argument that homosexuals are equivalent to ethnic and racial minorities. I understand this argument but I cannot accept it as valid. (Besides this raises another issue, is racism now illegal? Certainly morally wrong but are thoughts now regulated under the law?)
Marriage has a very deep-rooted religious and emotional history. Its application and definition are completely debatable and resisting its alteration is a justifiable exercise of free speech. On the other hand, these detractors and name-callers also have their right to free speech. If Perez Hilton wants to attack this young woman he has a right as long as he does not slander her. However, I believe Mr. Musto did slander Ms. Prejean and thus his comments should be the real focus of condemnation. However, calling conservatives “Hitler” has become a favorite of intellectually bankrupt liberals, so the mainstream media will embrace him for taking a strong stand.
Mr. Trump, I admire you. You had a chance to cave in to liberal censorship but you resisted. The photos that surfaced were a weak attempt to disqualify Ms. Prejean. Sure she should have disclosed the pictures but clearly they are an embarassment to her. Besides, I clearly recall liberals declaring it is alright to lie about sex. You don’t remember that? You must not have been of voting age in 1999, because I’ll never forget James Carville sitting in front of CNN cameras saying, “Everybody lies about sex. What’s the big deal?”