In the great tradition of the semiotician and diagnostician Dr. Walker Percy, Dr. Gerard Nadal drills down to the bedrock of today’s culture.
Put simply, words matter:
For all of the political drama in New York these past weeks, Friday night’s historic vote in favor of ay marriage by the NYS Senate was actually rather anti-climactic. It was a fight over political and philosophical nomenclature, not over new realities. As the losing side licks its wounds, we should realize that we didn’t lose as much as we think we did last night. We’ve been losing it for decades.
What we call the lived reality that is marriage is important. The name indicates the reality. Nomen est omen, as it is said in latin. “The name is the sign.” What really happened here in New York last night was a recognition that for thirty years we have given the lived reality of marriage to gays and lesbians, by systematically giving them all of the goods and privileges reserved to married people.
There was little, if any, protest as sodomy laws were struck down, when gay/lesbian adoptions were legalized, when partners were entitled to shared employment benefits hitherto reserved for spouses, etc. Society used to reserve these goods for those men and women willing to make a lifetime commitment to one another. What were once rights became entitlements in a nation increasingly debilitated by narcissism and a faux egalitarianism.
We have allowed what was once a brush fire to build to a forest fire that is now raging across the American landscape. Fueling that fire has been the same surrender of marital goods and privileges to cohabiting heterosexuals as well. Add to that no-fault divorce and the all-out war on the greatest of all the goods of marriage:
The abortion of over 53 million babies, because people have been enjoying the sex, but were not prepared mentally, emotionally, or economically to embrace the obvious outcome. Children are the greatest of all the blessings of marriage, yet have been treated as mere accessories by people aping marriage.
The entire heated shaft of steel spiraling into the flinted face of culture’s death-ride can be found here.