Thursday, December 11, 2008

Jon Stewart and Mike Huckabee Clash Over Gay Marriage

This is an interesting exchange between Jon Stewart and Mike Huckabee on the issue of gay marriage.

I think Stewart comes out with the upper hand on this one, doing especially well at exposing the goofiness of the "one man, one woman" defense. From the transcript:
Governor Huckabee: Well, marriage still means one man one woman, life relationship. I think people have a right to live any way they want to. But even anatomically- let's face it, the only way that we can create the next generation is through a male female relationship. For 5000 years of recorded human history, that's what marriage has meant.


Stewart: But people got married in the interim and- then they went back and said you're not- I guess my question is...

You said, reaffirming the tradition of marriage over 5000 years, which takes it back to the Old Testament, where polygamy was the norm, not a heterosexual marriage between two couples [sic] that choose each other.

Marriage has evolved greatly over those 5000 years, from a property arrangement, polygamy... we've redefined it constantly. It used to be that people of different races could not... marry.

It strikes me as very convenient, to go back to the Bible and say, "Hey, man... we gotta look at the way they define marriage..." Why don't we look at the way they did slavery, in the Bible?

Huckabee: But if we change the definition, then we really do have to change it to accomodate all lifestyles. We have to say to the guy in West Texas, who had 27 wives, that's okay. And I'm not sure that I hear alot of people arguing that that's a great idea.
Huh? Huckabee wants to use biblical, historical tradition as a basis for defining marriage, but he doesn't want to endorse polygamy? Stewart is absolutely right calling him out on this silliness. The institution of marriage has changed throughout the centuries, depending on culture. "It's always been done this way" is a stupid and incorrect argument. One, because it hasn't always been done that way. And two, as I've pointed out before, incumbency doesn't make an idea a good one (see slavery, disallowing the female vote, and peeing in the same place you get your drinking water).


Philip said...

How pathetic is it that Jon Stewart is the only member of the media asking these questions?

Kenny Wyland said...

There certainly aren't enough asking these questions, but Jon isn't the only one. Keith Olbermann had a fantastic response to Prop 8:

Keith Olbermann Special Comment on Prop 8