BreakPoint: America’s Reversal on Gay ‘Marriage’

What Really Happened?

By John Stonestreet Published on February 12, 2018

The fight over same-sex “marriage” already seems like a distant memory. But the way it was fought is the mother of all worldview lessons.

According to recent surveys, Americans — especially younger generations — are more supportive of gay “marriage” than ever before. One Gallup poll revealed that a strong majority — 64 percent — approve of the rights invented and bestowed on same-sex couples by the Supreme Court in the Obergefell decision.

And the Barna Group recently reported that teenagers today are at least twice as likely as American adults to identify as LGBT.

All of this, despite the fact that in 2011, a vast majority of U.S. states had defined marriage as the union of one man and one woman. How could it be that, in just the next four years, state after state would strike down those marriage amendments, public opinion would shift by ten points and finally, in 2015, the Obergefell decision would make everything official?

At least part of the answer is found in how entertainment reshaped our collective imaginations. From Will and Grace, to Glee, to Modern Family, Hollywood spent years, and millions, portraying homosexuality as funny, normal, natural, and even wholesome.

Around the same time, in another sphere of culture, politicians like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton “evolved” on the issue, and their base — which was already largely pro-gay — responded with a fast and radical leftward swing.

In a cultural moment, political liberals went from tolerating disagreement on marriage to demonizing anyone who still affirmed “one-man-one-woman,” as bigoted, hateful, homophobes.

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Business, too, played a major role in this shift. The success of the Human Rights Campaign in pressuring companies to actively promote LGBT causes is, well, incredible. And government leadership in state after state, with rare exceptions like North Carolina, caved to the corporate financial leverages that were being threatened against them.

But decades before all that happened in entertainment, politics, and business, there was something else that made same-sex “marriage” basically inevitable: the formal divorce of marriage and procreation.

As University of Texas sociologist Mark Regnerus has convincingly argued, “the pill” alone was enough to sever the link between sex and procreation, changing how Americans thought about love and marriage. No longer did those two things necessarily lead to that “baby in the baby carriage.” Protestants, evangelicals, and the Catholic laity mostly accepted that change without a peep of protest.

The divorce of marriage and procreation led to all kinds of unintended consequences. Marriage was popularly transformed from being a nest for children to being an expression of adult feelings. And once it was no longer “about the children,” “no-fault divorce” legally redefine marriage in the law.

Fast forward a few decades, removing any remaining stigmas on sexual behavior, and then terms like “husband and wife,” “mother” and “father,” and ultimately, “male and female” lost their defining power. Same-sex unions were then just a very short step away.

Which brings us to today and the news that an up-and-coming generation may be the most pro-LGBT in history. Those of us who believe in God’s design for sex face a daunting task. Reversing Obergefell and rebuilding the shattered consensus on natural marriage won’t happen quickly. But here’s what we can do …

First, we can help our children understand what went wrong, especially the wrong ideas about sex, marriage, happiness, and procreation that permeate our society. Second, we can help them know what’s right about God’s design for marriage, sex, and procreation.

But remember, this battle was lost, not by argument, but in the imagination. And so we must embody God’s design in our marriages and in our communities.

And finally, we should repent of the ways in which we embraced the deadly wrong ideas of this social revolution.

Resources

Get Ready, Youth Group Leaders: Teens Twice as Likely to Identify as Atheist or LGBT

  • Kate Shellnutt | Christianity Today | January 23, 2018

In U.S., More Adults Identifying as LGBT

  • Gallup News | January 11, 2017

Same-Sex Marriage: A Thoughtful Approach to God’s Design for Marriage

  • John Stonestreet, Josh McDowell | Baker Publishing | July 2014

 

G. Shane Morris contributed to this article.

Originally published on Breakpoint.org: BreakPoint Commentaries, February 12, 2018. Re-published with permission of the Colson Center for Christian Worldview.

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  • Patmos

    The Marxist takeover of America is roughly in phase two, the phase of destabilization.

    It started with the first phase, demoralization, which bloomed in the 1960s. This phase helped flip entire generations of young people into useful idiots who willingly support their own destruction, and now we’re seeing the encouragement of that destruction with the continued embrace of things like drug use, sexual perversion, and mindless consumption.

    Destabilization counts on people not thinking long term, so immediate pleasure and satisfaction come to the forefront. The LGBT movement, and it’s being marketed as a civil rights movement, is an exploitation of that shallow mindset.

    In ignoring the long term and favoring immediate pleasure, the useful idiot does not find satisfaction, which leads to the third phase.

    The third phase is internal strife and violence as people blame their dissatisfaction on the system, and we’re already seeing the seeds planted for that. This rage is also inflamed by things like supposed racial injustices, where people’s emotions are played upon. Point out to these useful idiots that their supposed grievances have little to do with justice, and emotion usually wins out and they remain blind.

    The ultimate goal of this third stage is civil war, or at least enough of a breakdown to weaken the system and make it vulnerable, at which point centralized elites come in and offer their so called solutions which are in fact the stripping away of freedoms and a shift towards dependence on the state.

    The stark realization of these facts may be too much for the useful idiots to digest and process, as it counters their very being. Without any realization of what is happening the fourth and final stage, takeover, is inevitable.

    Takeover consists of a purging of any and all that counter the new regime, including most of the useful idiots who still retain at least some recollection of the old system and as such are a potential threat to the new. That’s what the useful idiots don’t realize. It’s what makes them useful idiots.

    • Howard

      Karl Marx is pretty irrelevant to the world, including America, today. You could make a better case for a gnostic takeover or a Muslim takeover or a Buddhist takeover, and just about as good an argument for a takeover by the cult of Mithras. What you are seeing is not Marxism, but the spiritual forces that gave rise to Marxism.

  • tz1

    Basically shortly after 1960, almost every protestant denomination did a 180 on Contraception being objectively evil (The Anglicans in 1930 at the Lambeth conference said for “serious reasons only”, but that was the crack that collapsed things). Humanae Vitae predicted the problems including #MeToo – Women were temples of developing life, but become sex objects.

    Meanwhile we flail about Abortion. While the church was sleeping since the anniversary of Roe V. Wade, Planned Parenthood WAS FUNDED in that continuing resolution. Where was even one article to “call your congressman!”? Even here?

  • Larry Wilke

    Worth pointing out that Gallup polls should be totally disregarded. If you search Gallup offices, you will discover they are ALL located in blue areas. Even the one in Atlanta which is not considered a part of Georgia by the Georgians who don’t live in Atlanta.

    • john

      Who cares where their offices are located? They interview people from all 50 states; blue, red, purple, whatever.

  • john

    Or maybe we just let people be and focus on our own wooden beams in our eyes. But if it’s really so necessary to prevent gay couples from marrying for the world to be able to function, the logical response would be to first get heterosexual couples to 1) stop having pre-marital sex, 2) stop using birth control and 3) stop getting divorced. In other words, good luck.

    • Chris C.

      True to a point, but the wooden beam argument, if taken to its natural end, would also preclude witnessing to the other evils you mentioned. Intimate same-sex relations, are as evil as non-marital sex, artificial contraception, and divorce. A genuine “Seamless Garment” approach would condemn all as moral evils. We can voice objective truth, while at the same time humbly remembering that we are “the worst of sinners” to quote St. Paul. After all, this isn’t just about personal morality, but about the deep social implications of grave sin in our world.

  • Albion

    Mass entertainment has a lot to answer for in the general acceptance of gay marriage. It is as if those who used to bully and poke fun at people who they suspected to be gay or effeminate have had a brain transplant within several years, the result of which is their tendency to “celebrate diversity.”

  • Howard

    One hundred years ago, the Temperance movement was rapidly accumulating the political power that culminated in the ratification of the 18th amendment on January 16, 1919. It was the wave of the future. What kind of knuckle-dragger would dare try to turn back the clock to the time when beer was legal? Well, we know how well that worked out.

    Let’s not pretend that ANY political choices being made today — good, bad, or indifferent — are permanent and irreversible, even though we may not live to see them reversed. Society may be like a drunk who first falls into one ditch and then into the other, but on the whole I would bet that he more-or-less tends to follow the road, which in this metaphor is the natural law. It’s not so much that anyone will punish the drunk for straying from the path into the thick woods on either side, but even in his drunken state, the labor necessary to push forward through the woods, the scratches, and the dangerous footing eventually make it obvious he should return to the road.

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