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Thomas More Society on Marriage Equality

The Thomas More Society, which Jeremy Hooper inaccurately thinks is the Thomas More Law Center, has written a letter to Illinois legislators urging them to vote against a bill to legalize same-sex marriage because it will make them look like bigots.

However, if you vote “yes” to the proposed same-sex marriage bill, you will harm your constituents in two primary ways:

1) You will declare your constituents who believe that marriage is a union of one man and one woman to be bigots and discriminators. You will further ensure that this declaration is reinforced through official government policy. For instance, as in other states, you may see public schools in your district instruct children, beginning in kindergarten, that (a) same-sex couples and same-sex sexual activity are the same as opposite-sex married couples and opposite-sex marital sexual activity or that (b) kids do not need both a mom and a dad – two moms or two dads are just as good. Parents in your district who disagree have no right under law to opt their young children out of this kind of instruction.

Yes, just like legalizing interracial marriage made opponents of miscegenation look like bigots (because, of course, that is exactly what they are). And just like interracial couples are portrayed in textbooks as normal and equal to a same-race couple, with racist parents not allowed to opt their kids out of this kind of instruction.

Comments

  1. busterggi says

    “You will declare your constituents who believe that marriage is a union of one man and one woman to be bigots and discriminators.”

    No they won’t, its your behavior that will.

  2. eric says

    I’m perfectly fine with public schools taking a more nuanced approach. For example, teaching that while the law allows and the majority of people approve of same sex marriage, there are many religious groups and people who disapprove of it for religious reasons, who think that it is immoral, destructive to society, and should not be legal. After all, schools teach about prohibition and the temperance movement without necessarily casting moral judgements on the people in it.

    But I doubt these folks would go along with that. They aren’t going to escape the stigma of bigotry when schookids are taught a more in-depth and comprehensive view of SSM’s social status…and they know that. They may even get more upset about such a lesson, because it clearly ties their bigotry back to their religion.

  3. Moggie says

    Parents in your district who disagree have no right under law to opt their young children out of this kind of instruction.

    Homeschooling is illegal in Illinois?

  4. says

    (b) kids do not need both a mom and a dad… Parents in your district who disagree have no right under law to opt their young children out of this kind of instruction.

    I agree! I do not want my kids learning that being a single parent is acceptable! Even if that parent is a widow/widower – it is WRONG!!!

  5. raven says

    Named after a Catholic saint whose big accomplishment was murdering Protestant heretics.

    IIRC, St. Thomas More managed to hang six of them.

  6. cptdoom says

    Well, they do have a point. After all the Roman Catholic Church has basically been shut down for teaching that divorced people are adulterers if they get remarried and Catholics are routinely attacked for their refusal to recognize such marriages as valid, aren’t they?

  7. baal says

    Mr. Hooper’s complaint is late (his view is already bigoted) and it’s off talking point. The tested talking point focuses on how marriage is special and has to do with when mommies and daddies like each other a lot. By focusing on M/F couples, they create a mental carpet to sweep other options under. Neither his version nor the talking point really helps them in the long run but harm he’s complaining of already exists so it’s not all that new nor compelling (even if we grant that it’s a harm).

  8. Sastra says

    If people want to complain that they should not be stigmatized as bigots when they are simply following the teachings of their church, then I’m usually fine with that. They may indeed be wonderful, tolerant, open-minded people with generous characters and kindly impulses without a bigoted bone in their body. Ok. Granted.

    Their religion sucks. It’s not only false — it’s pernicious.

    The God they believe in is a raging bigot, the church they belong to is a cesspit of prejudice, and their religious leaders are leading them into doing things and agreeing with things which go against their better nature and normal inclinations. These sacred teachings also go against what’s virtuous and good and reasonable in the world.

    And then comes the part where we all get to lay this out in public point by point, and urge them and every other sensible person to renounce their faith because it’s in the wrong thing. We’re not going to call you a bigot. Absolutely right. Don’t attack the poor little believer. Attack the church, dismantle the doctrine, undermine the religion, and throw the concepts of God and faith-in-God to the lions.

    They should agree that this is so much better than being thought a bigot. And it’s more to the point.

  9. Rodney Nelson says

    raven #7

    Named after a Catholic saint whose big accomplishment was murdering Protestant heretics.

    More did a whole lot more than that.

    He was a strong advocate of education for women, personally giving his daughters the same classical education he gave his son. His eldest daughter, Margaret, was highly regarded by Erasmus of Rotterdam as a Greek and Latin scholar. Because of More’s influence, schooling for middle and upper class women became acceptable in England.

    More was Lord Chancellor (Prime Minister) for Henry VIII, a job made difficult because of the religious differences between them.

    More wrote Utopia.

    Burning heretics was not the highlight of More’s career.

  10. raven says

    Burning heretics was not the highlight of More’s career.

    Oh. It was just a hobby or interesting diversion.

    That makes it OK then.

    wikipedia:

    In total there were six burned at the stake for heresy during More’s chancellorship: Thomas Hitton, Thomas Bilney, Richard Bayfield, John Tewkesbery, Thomas Dusgate, and James Bainham.[11]:299–306 More’s influential role in the burning of Tyndale is reported by Moynahan.[25] Burning at the stake had long been a standard punishment for heresy

  11. John Hinkle says

    I just read the whole letter. The authors have quite the capacity to cast Christians as victims who will suffer greatly if the legislation is passed. All manner of businesses run by Christians will be forced to cater to same sex couples, and their “religious freedom” to discriminate will be curtailed. Pretty much standard Xian homophobic screed. I would’ve deep sixed the letter after first few sentences were I a lawmaker.

  12. F [disappearing] says

    raven, you uncharacteristically disappoint a little bit here. No one said anything makes murder OK. Issue was taken with what you claimed was More’s “big accomplishment”. Murder as an, er, “tool of statecraft” is hardly extraordinary, and it certainly was not when More was in office. In fact, it was quite in vogue, especially considering More’s employer and what happened to More himself.

    You are correct on the facts, just not so much on the characterization or the strawman, “That makes it OK then.” Yes, the RCC did saint him for being a “defender of the faith”, for prosecuting/executing heretics, and later dying for the same reasons. And yes, this law firm almost certainly took his name for these same reasons. (The irony is painful indeed. Religious liberty, lol.)

    I suppose one could make a case that this was a big accomplishment of More as a saint, although saint is not a profession, and his biggest accomplishment would yet be considered, for the propaganda purposes of sainthood, as dying for refusing to cave for H8. (They loves martyrs more than murders for propaganda. You know the “oppressed/discriminated-against” types and how they act, even when they are the majority.)

  13. says

    You will declare your constituents who believe that marriage is a union of one man and one woman to be bigots and discriminators.

    Don’t pass this legislation because it will reveal what dumb assholes your constituents are. Gotcha.

  14. says

    Oh, and I agree with F [disappearing]* that raven mischaracterized what Rodney Nelson was saying. Pointing out that More did some good work for women’s rights does not equate to making excuses for his murders. It’s entirely possible to praise someone’s good accomplishments while condemning their evil doings while remaining logically consistent. Saying that More did good things by encouraging women’s education is not the same as saying it was OK for him to burn heretics.

    * Maybe I should add something in brackets to the end of my name, since all the cool kids are doing it. I’m drinking beer at the moment, so in a few minutes I’ll be Wes [micturating].

  15. cswella says

    @F [Disappearing]:

    “He kills people on the weekend, but otherwise he’s a great guy”

    [or]

    “Everyone was doing it, so we can’t point out the individual doing it”

    [or]

    “Catholic Churches help out lots of people, why are you all focused on the bad things they do?”

  16. raven says

    I’m sorry people.

    St. Thomas More is a serial killer.

    I have a hard time admiring someone whose hobby, entertainment, or even their job involves burning people alive on stacks of firewood. For what they believe in.

    But that is just me, I guess. For those who defend a serial killer, we will just have to differ. And I will just have to hope you don’t live within a thousand miles of my neighborhood or own a bic lighter..

  17. bradleybetts says

    “You will declare your constituents who believe that marriage is a union of one man and one woman to be bigots and discriminators.”

    Possibly because they are? Besides, people have been “declaring” just that for years, or have the Thomas More Society not noticed?

  18. bradleybetts says

    @raven

    “Burning heretics was not the highlight of More’s career.

    Oh. It was just a hobby or interesting diversion.

    That makes it OK then.”

    I don’t think anyone’s saying it’s OK. People seem to be saying that just because he was wrong about some things does not mean he was wrong about everything. And of course they’re right.

  19. slc1 says

    Re raven @ #7

    Named after a Catholic saint whose big accomplishment was murdering Protestant heretics.

    IIRC, St. Thomas More managed to hang six of them.

    Somehow, that little tidbit was skipped in the movie, A Man for all Seasons, starring Paul Scofield as More.

  20. pacal says

    Regarding Thomas More. People here mentioned his part responsibility for the burning of 6 so-called heretics during his years as Lord Chancellor. What people should be aware of here is that Thomas More wrote many massive books denouncing “heresy” and in those books defended repression, inquisitorial methods and burning people alive for their religious opinions. In More’s Dialogue Concerning Heresies More said:

    The Author showeth his opinion concerning the burning of Heretics and that it is lawful, necessary, and well done.

    In another place More said:

    And for heretics as they be, the clergy both denounce them. And they be well worthy, the temporalty doth burn them. After the fire of Smithfield, hell doth receive them where the wretches burn forever.

    More positively rejoiced in the burning of heretics and the thought of oppressing them for it seems that destroying them with fire was a source of joy to him.

    There is irony in the fact that More who believed that it was just to murder men for their opinions was murdered for his own.

  21. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    People seem to be saying that just because he [Thomas More] was wrong about some things does not mean he was wrong about everything. And of course they’re right. – bradleybetts

    But his murderous activities, and his justification of them as referred to by Pacal@24, do make it quite legitimate to excoriate the members of the Thomas More Society for belonging to an organization named after him; and to suspect them of a desire to carry on where he was obliged to leave off. Stalin, in his contribution to Allied victory in WWII, did a great deal more good than Thomas More ever did, but we would rightly look askance at the members of a “Joseph Stalin Society”.

  22. Moggie says

    Nick Gotts:

    Stalin, in his contribution to Allied victory in WWII, did a great deal more good than Thomas More ever did, but we would rightly look askance at the members of a “Joseph Stalin Society”.

    Dammit, why won’t you bigots leave us alone? We’re just an innocent society of moustache-admirers!

  23. jnorris says

    Imagine the horror: business being forced to take people’s money. Why i never. What next, businesses paying their employees?

  24. jonathangray says

    Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    But [Thomas More’s] murderous activities, and his justification of them […] do make it quite legitimate to excoriate the members of the Thomas More Society for belonging to an organization named after him

    Is it legitimate to excoriate serving members of the Royal Air Force, which burned considerably more Germans than St Thomas More did heretics?

  25. dingojack says

    Johhny – don’t underestimate ol’ Tom – had been able, had he had the technology, he would have burnt every person his Henry called a heretic, All 445 million of them (or so).
    So many heretics, so little firewood.
    Dingo
    ——–
    Plus he was the David Barton of his time

  26. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    Is it legitimate to excoriate serving members of the Royal Air Force, which burned considerably more Germans than St Thomas More did heretics? – Piltdown Man

    Whether the bombing of German cities was morally right in the context of the war against Nazism is a difficult question, but at least those members of the RAF didn’t sign a concordat with Hitler.

    Do you consider that Thomas More was justified in killing heretics?

  27. jonathangray says

    Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    Whether the bombing of German cities was morally right in the context of the war against Nazism is a difficult question, but at least those members of the RAF didn’t sign a concordat with Hitler.

    So incinerating thousands of non-combatants is “a difficult question” but seeking to win a measure of protection for your people living under a dictator is evil …

    Owlmirror once told me he believed the various Allied atrocities during WWII amounted to a “lesser evil”. I took him to mean that they were outweighed by the rightness of the Allies’ cause, if not actually justified by it. Seems a reasonable position to me.

    Do you consider that Thomas More was justified in killing heretics?

    I would say he was every bit as justified in sentencing heretics to death by burning as Judge Kaufman was in sentencing the Rosenbergs to death by electrocution. Heresy was an organised subversive movement that struck at the heart of the social order. As we know, it was ultimately successful.

  28. dan4 says

    @33: Yes, because sentencing people to be burned to death for the “crime” of heresy doesn’t “strike at the heart of the social order” in the slightest.

  29. dingojack says

    Johnny stated:
    Heresy was an organised subversive movement that struck at the heart of the social order.”

    Organised? Subversive? Struck at the heart of social order?
    Citation(s) required

    As we know, it was ultimately successful“.

    And Nazism was defeated, so all those innocent Germans (0.56-0.86% of the population) were mere ‘collateral damage’ for the good of the ‘social order’, right Johnny?
    Can you say ‘the ends justifies the means’, boys and girls?

    What’s next ‘just following orders’?

    @@
    Dingo

  30. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    jonathangray,

    <blockquote<So incinerating thousands of non-combatants is “a difficult question” but seeking to win a measure of protection for your people living under a dictator is evil …

    As usual, your dishonesty is manifest. Quite apart from the Concordat, which gave Hitler moral support (and followed years of support for fascism in Italy, Spain, Austria, Poland…), it was the Catholic Centre Party which gave Hitler the votes to establish his dictatorship through the Enabling Act. the Church never called upon German Catholics to resist that dictatorship or the war of aggression that it embarked on, and assisted many war criminals to escape justice in 1945.

    Owlmirror once told me he believed the various Allied atrocities during WWII amounted to a “lesser evil”. I took him to mean that they were outweighed by the rightness of the Allies’ cause, if not actually justified by it. Seems a reasonable position to me.

    So bringing the matter up was simply a dishonest attempt to distract attention from the atrocities carried out by Thomas More.

    Do you consider that Thomas More was justified in killing heretics?

    I would say he was every bit as justified in sentencing heretics to death by burning as Judge Kaufman was in sentencing the Rosenbergs to death by electrocution.

    So, not justified at all, then.

    Heresy was an organised subversive movement that struck at the heart of the social order. As we know, it was ultimately successful.

    But since it was an evil social order, that only makes More’s crimes more disgusting. As we all know, you’d like to do the same to us atheists if you had the chance. You are, truly, vile scum.

  31. jonathangray says

    Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    Quite apart from the Concordat, which gave Hitler moral support (and followed years of support for fascism in Italy, Spain, Austria, Poland…), it was the Catholic Centre Party which gave Hitler the votes to establish his dictatorship through the Enabling Act. the Church never called upon German Catholics to resist that dictatorship or the war of aggression that it embarked on, and assisted many war criminals to escape justice in 1945.

    Yeah, we all know the leftist script. If all these things occurred as you say they did & for the reasons you imply, then you might have a case that certain highly-placed Vatican officials (perhaps including the pope) were guilty of shameful moral cowardice. So what’s new?

    But I’m disinclined to believe they occurred quite as you say they did & for quite the reasons you imply, if only because you refrain from condemning the slaughter of civilian populations during wartime. Why should I believe any claims by such a moral deadbeat?

    So bringing the matter up was simply a dishonest attempt to distract attention from the atrocities carried out by Thomas More.

    No, because what I regard as a reasonable position is that the Allied cause was just in spite of war crimes committed by the Allies, not that the atrocities themselves were justified. That is what I took Owlmirror to mean, as it was the most charitable interpretation of his words. In like manner, I believe the Crusades were justifiable but would not try to justify certain acts by some Crusaders, which I am the first to admit are among the blackest stains on the history of Christendom.

    You, however, do not condemn the Allied war crimes. You say it’s an open (albeit “difficult”) question whether they were morally right. That is not a reasonable position.

    So, not justified at all, then.

    If you don’t regard treason as a crime deserving the death penalty, you’re a leftist.

    it was an evil social order

    I sincerely hope you live to see what replaces it.

    As we all know, you’d like to do the same to us atheists if you had the chance.

    Not all all atheists. Mostly I’d just like to deprive them of any teaching positions, burn their books etc.

    You are, truly, vile scum.

    Vile scum I may be, but at least I don’t regard the planned mass murder of civilians as a “difficult question”.

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