Quick hits: Losing the argument on marriage; losing the unity of the European Union

Quick hits: Losing the argument on marriage; losing the unity of the European Union

By Phil Lawler | May 06, 2016

Losing the argument on marriage

When the arguments against same-sex marriage are so convincing– the natural-law arguments, the arguments from tradition, the arguments from social science– why do we keep losing the public debates? Writing in the Claremont Review, Robert Reilly offers a possible explanation, in reviewing a book by Ryan Anderson, who is arguably the most persuasive and certainly the most energetic of the American defenders of marriage. Reilly praises the irrepressible Anderson for what he does so well, but goes on to criticize him for what he fails to do:

The rightness of marriage cannot be understood without a concomitant understanding of why homosexual relations are wrong. To omit consideration of the latter endangers the former—because it is precisely by excluding the wrong, the unnaturalness (and grave health risks) of sodomy from the marriage debate that proponents of homosexual “marriage” have managed to convince so many that it is harmless. Unless Anderson and the mainstream marriage movement are willing to say what, precisely, is inherently disordered about homosexual acts, they’d better get used to losing the argument—because they won’t even be in it.

Losing the unity of the European Union

Earlier today, in this same space, I commented on the failure of Cardinal Marx to address THE problem facing the European Union. You’ll recall that St. John Paul II warned European leaders about this problem, telling them that shared economic interests alone would not be enough to hold the continent together–especially becase economic interests tend to shift over time. Sure enough, the people of Europe are losing confidence in the European Union. The Wall Street Journal reports that although public opinion in most European countries favors the monetary union, only in one country (Portugal) does a majority have a favorable opinion of the European Union in general; across the continent the “favorability rating” of the EU is an anemic 37%. Not coincidentally, the Wall Street Journal introduces these poll results in discussing the pressures that could produce a break-up of the EU. If it’s not held together by a shared culture (which can only be based on a shared Christian heritage), the EU isn’t really held together at all.

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