Bracketing Morality: The Marginalization of Moral Argument in the Same-Sex Marriage Debate

Core ValuesAn excerpt from an article by Albert Mohler:

[C]onsider the implications of this bracketing of moral argument. What, other than morality, sustains any laws restricting human sexual behavior?

The legislative debate over the prohibition of polygamy after the Civil War was explicitly moral. Sociological analysis did not drive that movement, morality did. What about all the other laws that restrict sexual acts? Are they also to be cast down by this logic?

Moral judgment under girds the entire structure of laws and is necessary for the rational structure of any significant statute. The idea that our laws can stand independent of moral foundation is senseless. We do not think that driving under the influence of alcohol is simply risky, in terms of statistics. We believe that it is wrong, in terms of explicit moral judgment.

The point here is not to criticize those who, working within the confines of public reason and prevailing constrictions, do their best — and often brilliantly so — to defend marriage without moral judgment.

But we should note this change in the rules of public debate with more than a passing interest; for the implications of this moral revolution are more vast than anyone can yet foresee. At stake is not only the ability to express moral judgment about homosexuality, but about any sexual behavior. Further, this logic cannot be restricted to public debates about sexuality. This revolution goes far beyond marriage and sex.

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