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Catholic Church on Civil Unions

Well, it would appear, based on the comments of the wonderfully verbose Cardinal (a fancy word for Mr.) Sean Brady in this Irish Times article, that allowing same-sex couples the legal right to marry or cohabitate and have that marriage/cohabitation recognised as a fully legal civil union, would result in Ireland turning into a country full of lawlessness, unemployment and drug abuse, since British and US studies, according to our wonderfully neutral clergyman, suggest that:

“children born outside of marriage are more likely to do worse at school, suffer poorer health and are more likely to face problems of unemployment, drugs and crime.”

…I’m sorry what?

Cardinal Brady is also quoted as saying that:

“one in four children of cohabiting parents experienced family breakdown before they started school, compared to just one in 10 children of married parents.”

If you actually analyse this statement, all it says is that the family is 25% likely to breakdown before the child starts school. Well, my parents have been seperated since I was 9 or 10, and I do not regularly inject myself with heroin, snort cocaine, steal cars, mug people or spend most of my late nights on the streets of Limerick hunting for food among my drunken peers, so it would appear that even though my family has broken down, I am not contributing to godless anarchy. (I am contributing to widespread godlessness, but that’s actually a good thing!)

It’s interesting that Cardinal Brady envisions that Ireland would be plummetted into some Catholic vision of godless anarchy based solely on the fact that we, the people of this republic, would wish to grant the same rights of marriage and cohabitation to all citizens regardless of gender or sexuality. Only a man tapped into the wondrous drug of religion would make the so clearly obvious connection between civil liberty and godless anarchy.

It makes me wonder whether Sodom and Gomorrah were simply guilty of promoting civil liberties, as opposed to being highly immoral rapists and sodomites. But, wait hang on…aren’t the Catholic priests the immoral rapists…? Oh, no, sorry, my mistake, they already paid for those crimes.

It’s also interesting to see that Cardinal Brady’s utterly rational and sane argument against universal civil union rights relies on the “fact” that

“[Catholic teaching] is linked to the complementarity of the sexes…and this was not something it was possible for any individual to change. It is part of the order of things since Creation.”

I’m sorry…Creation?

Don’t we have billions of years of highly substantiated and valid evidence that renders the Creation myth utterly null and void? – Yes, we do.
And don’t we also have millions of examples throughout biology, in both the macroscopic and microscopic realm, of creatures that do not, in fact, have “complimentarity of the sexes” as a matter of nature? – Yes, we do.

So, even if we accepted for a split-second the Creation Myth, if God created all the biological life on the planet (haha) he would have created those creatures without “complimentarity of the sexes” also, and as such that concept would no longer be unique to human relationships or useful in our discussion.

By the way “complimentarity of the sexes” is simply a highly convoluted phrase used by Mr. Brady to attempt to make those of us who are not paying attention assume that two sexes is all there is, was and ever can be.

So, please, Cardinal Brady, do not try and assert your bare-faced bigotry to anyone else in this country, because none of your objections against allowing men to marry men and women to marry women do not stand up to scrutiny. They merely serve to insult both your intelligence and that of the Irish people you claim to be acting in the best interest of.

If you wish to provide some form of substantial and verified evidence to back up your claims of godless anarchy resulting from the Civil Partnership Bill, we would all love to hear it, but all you have presented us with thus far is “suggestions” of propensities towards anti-social behaviour in children of cohabiting parents, which is really just a way of saying non-married parents have stroppy children, which still remains to seen in an actual study, my dear Cardinal.

The Civil Partnership Bill is set to become law some time next year, and it seems for Cardinal Brady that

“it is difficult to see how anything other than the introduction of de facto marriage for cohabiting and same-sex couples is envisaged”.

Well, yes, Einstein, that’s kind of the point!

Ignoring for a moment the vacuous and baseless claims provided by the insightful Cardinal, what would actually be wrong with having de facto marriage for cohabiting and same-sex couples?

Oh, yes, that’s right, nothing.

Although he would never admit it publicly, I’m fairly confident (though I freely admit I have no evidence for this, unlike the Cardinal) that the charming Cardinal’s views are not far from those of the vitriolic Pastor Fred Phelps at GodHatesIreland.com

Patsy McGarry, the author of this Irish Times article mentions:

In his address to the Céifin conference on November 4th, Cardinal Brady indicated that the Government could face a legal challenge if the Civil Partnership Bill became law. “Those who are committed to the probity of the Constitution, to the moral integrity of the word of God and to the precious human value of marriage between a man and a woman as the foundation of society may have to pursue all avenues of legal and democratic challenge to the published legislation if this is the case,” he said.

Those who are committed to the probity of the Constitution have my support, however those who are committed to the “moral integrity” of the “word of God” need to watch out, as they have no place whatsoever in civil matters. Just as campaigners for the views of the Flying Spaghetti Monster would be thrown out of any serious discussion on laws affecting the country, so too should the Catholic church and any other religious parties be thrown out of the discussion. If your opinion is solely informed by your religious sensibilities and/or beliefs, then your opinion has no place anywhere other than your home or your pulpit. It most certainly does not belong in the laws of our country. (Or any country for that matter!)

If the Catholic church is stupid enough to challenge this bill, I will be right behind them pulling their “arguments” out from under them, and I suggest you do the same should it come to it!

And as for those who are to committed to the “precious human value of marriage between a man and a woman as the foundation of society” let me say this once and once only. The quality of a child’s upbringing and their resulting contributions to (or detractions from) our society has got absolutely nothing to do with the fact of whether or not they grow up in a home with a female mother and male father. It has to do with the quality of the parents and their care for that child. I can almost guarantee you that a cohabiting gay couple committed to each other and the happiness of a child in their care would be much better parents than a large proportion of our married heterosexual population. And that is merely one possibility in a multi-faceted situation.

Man and woman as the foundation of society is a dead concept and is no longer relevant in our modern society, and while the religious types are stuck in an apopleptic fit about marriage being a thing of the past, we as a society are moving onwards to a society where uttering a phrase such as “complimentarity of the sexes” as support for a religiously informed opinion would earn you a swift smack on the nose with a rolled up newspaper. (Not the Irish Times in this case!)

People are the foundation of society. Black people, white people, mocha people, sane people, crazy people, religious people, irreligious people, heterosexual people, homsexual people, bisexual people, transexual people, young people, old people, big people, small people, important people, regular people, disabled people, homeless people, they all play their part.

As do you. Peace.