a year ago I did a series of seven Jonal articles entitled "Defense
of Marriage," in which I quoted various interest groups about the importance
of preserving the traditional view of marriage as a union of a man and a woman,
in the hope of preserving the societal structure that can best serve the needs
and interests of children. I quoted documents from Catholic, Protestant, and secular
bodies and individuals putting forth their philosophical case for defending this
view of marriage against the campaign to legalize and establish "gay marriages."
Recently I found an article that is, I think, the best I've
read on the topic and it is, ironically (in that we see in the press and hear
on the broadcast media much more from the liberal side of Judaism on such topics)
by a traditionalist Jewish columnist, Samuel Silver, chairman of Toward Tradition,
writing on a website that was new to me, Intellecutal Conservative.com. Though
it is dated April 19, 2004, I just recently found it, so it's new to me. I recommend
reading the whole article, entitled Some
of My Best Friends Are Gay, if you find the topic interesting, confusing,
or curious. Meanwhile, I'm giving a few sample thoughts to whet your appetite.
Silver's second paragraph is:
This critical debate
is not truly between homosexuals and heterosexuals; it is between two opposing
worldviews, one secular and the other religious. Approximately 80% of Americans
hold a religious worldview, but the secular left has done an excellent, yet nefarious,
job of dividing those with a religious worldview through false stereotyping. Their
manipulative “divide & conquer” strategy has led many religious people to erroneously
fear other religious people more than they fear the secular fundamentalists set
on destroying religion and Judeo-Christian values. Thus, many Americans are understandably
confused about the same-sex marriage issue and its ultimate driving force, secular
Already he appeals to more than
two of my own favorite touchstones, but the two I want to highlight are "Judeo-Christian
values" and "secular fundamentalism." Some liberals maintain that
"Judeo-Christian" is an invention of the Christian right to suggest
that there's a link between Jews and Christians that doesn't truly exist, suggesting
that it's offensive to Jews and therefore politically incorrect. I even bought
into this thinking for a long time in my editorial career and preferred to use
the word "biblical," but that is also a charged term that has to be
defined every time it's introduced. It is, therefore, refreshing and reassuring
to find that Jewish writers like Silver (and Dennis Prager, who has been doing
a series on the topic in his columns) not only like the designation "Judeo-Christian"
but find it vital for understanding the unique American ethos. "Secular fundamentalism"
suggests on its face that though secular humanists love to attack Christian and
other confessional religious brands of "fundamentalism," they have their
own fundamentalism, and it is no less narrow-minded in its way.
in on today's limit, I'll close with this:
discuss the religious view of human nature is not to ignore science, which also
informs the opinions of Americans. Many people may not be aware that modern science
is belatedly learning that the Biblical view of human nature is more accurate
than the views that have been the foundation for most of secular liberalism. In
his courageous new book, The Blank Slate, The Modern Denial of Human Nature,
MIT professor Steven Pinker, himself a secular liberal, concludes “…the theory
of human nature coming out of the cognitive revolution has more in common with
the Judeo-Christian theory of human nature …than with behaviorism, social constructionism,
and other versions of the Blank Slate.” Those that think religion is just ancient
superstition should take a second, or in many cases, a first look.
from such an unexpected source, I think this essay may go father to persuade a
lot of readers who tend to discount what Christians, especially if they're identified
with the "right," than similar essays from the better-known conservative
I'm eager to see any reactions any of you may have
on reading Silver's entire essay.
A complete index of Jon Kennedy's Jonals for 2001 - 2005