The Iowa electorate deep-sixed three judges the other week. We’re one of the states, you know, where same-sex marriage is possible/approved/legal/getting done. An interesting conversation between one of our students and one of my campus ministry colleagues last week:
Student: I’m happy about the elections
CM: Why is that?
Student: There’s a good chance that health care reform will get rolled back.
CM: And this is a good thing?
Student: I don’t want people telling me what I have to buy.
CM: Sounds reasonable. Anything else?
Student: Well, they voted out those judges that approved same-sex marriage.
CM: So … it’s a good thing the government can’t tell you what to do, but it’s okay that they can tell gays and lesbians what not to do.
Student: … … … Well …
I wasn’t aware there was controversy about Archbishop Nienstedt and his pre-election video production.
Another curiosity about the opposition to same-sex marriage. First, sex between consenting adults is pretty much legal everywhere. And the Church considers it a grave moral sin.
Second, most of the legal benefits for marriage are included in the category of morally positive: shared ownership, shared responsibility of raising children, visiting the sick, caring for the elderly, even a lower carbon footprint.
So … my concern isn’t that the archbishop is “wasting” money he could direct to the poor. Why didn’t he make a video telling Catholics to oppose sex outside of marriage as a legal reality. Because that’s what the core sin is here, right? It’s mostly about the sex. Why are Minnesota and Iowa bishops concerned about marriage? Because the real threat, the real immorality, is the sex.