By Peter Espeut
I appreciate the rebuttal of my column 'An unexamined life is not worth living' (Gleaner, February 1, 2013) by self-proclaimed secularist Hilaire Sobers. Those of us who, every week, hang out our thoughts for all to see and criticise, appreciate when we get a chance to know what our critics are thinking. Hopefully, we will really listen and learn from each other.
I suggest to Hilaire that LGBT apologists (including himself) project their faults on others. Psychological projection was first conceptualised by Sigmund Freud as a defence mechanism, where a person subconsciously denies his or her own negative attributes by ascribing them to the outside world instead. Thus, projection involves imagining or PROJECTING one's own undesirable thoughts, motivations, desires, and feelings on to others.
In his rebuttal 'Reason and faith are like oil and water' (Gleaner, February 5, 2013), Hilaire writes: "Christianity, given its totalitarian outlook, is the antithesis of human rights and liberal democracy" because it seeks to "find political expression in laws that have the effect of imposing Christian beliefs on all individuals, whether they subscribe to Christianity or not".
He goes on: "Objection to Christian tyranny is not about legitimising lifestyles; it's about combating an institution (religion) that is more interested in imposing its own brand of morality."
I invite Hilaire to self-examination: Is it not the LGBT lobby that is being totalitarian here? By trying to get laws passed which impose LGBT beliefs on us all, whether we subscribe to them or not? Isn't LGBT tyranny about seeking to legitimise their lifestyles by imposing their own brand of morality?
One of the examples Hilaire gives of "Christian tyranny" is that "Jamaican law imposes a Christian notion of marriage, even in a country with several groups of non-Christians". Hilaire, are you not being disingenuous? The notion that marriage is between one man and one woman is not uniquely Christian. All religions, including major ones like Judaism and Islam, and those with smaller followings like the Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Taos, Shintos, Sufis, and Rastas, define marriage in this way. Never before in human civilisation has any group sought to redefine marriage the way the LGBT lobby is trying to do.
I challenge you, Hilaire, to give me one example of a religion (or a society) anywhere in the world at any time in history (prior to our New Age cults) that supports gay marriage.
Marriage is not just a Christian ordinance: it is a human institution, performing functions for the common good of humanity. From the dawn of the human race, the family has been the context of production and reproduction - of goods and services, yes, but also of new human beings. The heterosexual family produces children and socialises them, reproducing society itself. The homosexual 'family' is unsustainable, requiring heterosexuals to provide the children for homosexuals to adopt.
Those who believe that the only composition of marriage is between one man and one woman are supporting a sustainable human institution.
Human rights have to do with promoting that which is human, and have their root in the human condition. That is why marriage (between one man and one woman), for those who wish to enter into it, is a human right. 'Gay rights' are not human rights, but are a public-relations ploy. 'Gay marriage' cannot be a human right, for it is not a human institution.
WHY NOT MARRY ALL?
The LGBT totalitarians want to redefine marriage to mean a union of any two humans. But why stop there, Hilaire? Why not redefine marriage to include a union of any three humans? Or four? If it takes a village to raise a child, why should a family contain only two parents?
And what about those who love their donkeys? Why not include them in the marriage? There are enough jackasses around.
In my column that Hilaire rebuts, I lamented that those who criticise religion "have only a passing acquaintance with religion, or a shallow understanding of science". After reading Hilaire's rebuttal, I have to add "or are unfamiliar with philosophical reasoning".
Reason is the method of moving from premises to conclusions by a process of logic. Philosophers begin with ideas as their premises, and reason them to their logical conclusion. Scientists begin with observable data as their premises, and develop hypotheses or theories based on reason. Theologians begin with articles of faith as their premises, and reason them to their logical conclusion. Theology is "reason informed by faith".
Hilaire, you need to get out a little more. Reason and faith are not like oil and water.
Peter Espeut is a chemist, sociologist and Roman Catholic deacon. Email feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.