Thursday, June 08, 2006

“Ban on Gay Marriage” Language Misleading

COMMENTARY by Ed Nicholson

The words used in discussing an issue in the news tells a lot about which side of the ideological fence a particular media outlet is on. How often, for example, do you hear the words “ban” and “gay marriage” associated with the news surrounding the possibility of nationwide legalized same-sex marriage? Is it any coincidence we hear these particular words bantered around this issue so often? I say no. I would argue that “ban” and “gay marriage” are simple, yet cleverly-devised words, precisely used by many in the mainstream media to intentionally and subtly mislead and deceive the public.

For one, the word “ban” implies that the thing it refers to is already happening and is commonplace – in other words, the norm. And people are comfortable with the norm. It naturally feels right to accept things that are normal. However, same-sex partnerships are not the norm; and the mainstream media knows this. That’s why they use their “ban” rhetoric. They know most people are not going to notice this when they watch or listen to the news. Therefore, if the few can get the many to subconsciously buy into the thinking that the homosexual lifestyle is normal, or is becoming more normal, then they can persuade the many to think that we on the right are now the “radicals” who want to restrict something that is the norm. If you want to normalize something, I say just dress it up as the American cowboy. What’s more normal then the American cowboy? The Marlboro Man convinced us that smoking is alright. Now we have the men of Brokeback Mountain showing us that gay is O.K. too.

“Gay marriage” is also a misnomer. What is it that is supposedly trying to be banned – gay marriage? I don’t think so. Gay marriage has been a cottage industry for some time now. It’s one thing to allow homosexuals to have their private ceremonies in Vegas or wherever, but it’s entirely different to force me to accept this behavior as normative, morally virtuous, and a benefit to society. But that is exactly what is being imposed upon us by an assembly of homosexual activists and overzealous, out-of-control, judges bent on reconstituting our laws. What we’re trying to do is defend against the legalization, and thereby, social acceptance of, and support for, same-sex marriage. We are not pushing for a ban on gay marriage per se. Gay marriage is not the issue. Legalized same-sex marriage is the issue.

So you see, those like me are not trying to ban anything; we’re trying to defend something. And that something is marriage – actual marriage. By definition, actual marriage is the union between a man and woman, the institution that forms the foundation of any healthy society, the glue that preserves families – and with, the well being of children. A civil and moral society must institute policies that do all they can to insure that children have the best chance of having both a loving mother and a loving father. Children deserve nothing less. Therefore, you’ll never hear me refer to this front in the Culture War as a fight for a “ban on gay marriage.” Instead, you will hear others and me on the so-called “right” (actually the center) refer to it as a fight to “protect marriage”.

Do you see how these words can deceive people into unorthodox ways of thinking? Gay marriage is not what is normal. Actual marriage is what is normal. And it is actual marriage that needs defending. Many who give you the news are relying on you not to notice these subtle differences. But now you do, because I just told you. So, the next time you see or hear the words “ban” or “gay marriage” on TV, in the papers, or on the radio, know that someone is trying to make you think a certain way. Either that, or they are just plain ignorant – which I doubt.

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