Lew has a great post up at Kiwipolitico about Recognising your enemy, following the passage of marriage equality in NZ. He quotes Kevin Hague MP’s third reading speech, which I shall in turn borrow (this is what we liberals call “giving credit”, Mr McCoskrie):
Over the years I have campaigned hard for the right of our communities to not be outsiders any more, to assume a full place in New Zealand society. With every new reform, the same group uses the same strategy, raising fears of terrible consequences which always fail to materialise.
In the case of marriage equality and queer rights in general, the same strategy usually boils down to “scaremonger about some slippery slope” – the Marry My Dog strategy (Stephen Franks) or the Mormons Will Marry All Your Daughters strategy (McCoskrie).
But exactly the same principle applies to a subject near and dear to my heart: reproductive rights. Because it’s exactly the same. The same old enemies with the same old arguments threatening the same old downfall of society.
And as Lew’s post suggests, recognising our enemy and his (invariably, inevitably his) strategy is a very important step to take. Add to that, I think exposing that strategy is an important point – saying to people “look, there’s Colin Craig, last time he was in the news he said you’d get locked up for giving your kid a dirty look, and he was completely off the mark on that one, wasn’t he?” and demonstrating again and again that, on pretty much every progressive battlefront, we are up against opportunistic lying scumbags who can’t handle anyone making different life choices to them.
So today, I want to highlight the enemy in the reproductive rights struggle – and the queer rights struggle. Because this is about Right to Zygote Life’s press release on the passage of marriage equality. Same enemy, people.
What they tried to hide during the marriage equality debate was the essential fundamentalist Christian bigotry behind their arguments. Note all the talk about “traditional values”, and “history”, and “culture”, and very little about the Bible or Jesus (who incidentally had fuck-all to say on the subject).
In this increasingly secular, open-minded society, it is imperative for the fundies to distance themselves from the religious prejudice which is the foundation of everything they say and do.
But sometimes they slip up.
So here it is: RTL’s response to marriage equality, a topic somewhat outside their usual purview. In a single press release they manage to mention God no fewer than eight times in a total of 406 words (counting capitalised masculine pronouns, God is 2.5% of the release). They explicitly state that sex should only be for procreation, they give a shout-out to the Culture of Death (still, sadly, not a thrash metal band), they still aren’t over people taking the Pill.
The twist is that, having failed on multiple occasions to make us all believe that hurricanes, earthquakes and drought are God’s punishment for our sins, they’ve now decided that homosexuality itself is the divine judgement upon us. Which is a little circular, but we are dealing with people who also haven’t caught up with in vitro fertilisation.
The widespread acceptance of homosexuality could be God’s punishment on society. The challenge for society is a renewed commitment to marriage as instituted by God. We have sown the wind we are now reaping the whirlwind.
I look forward to high-fiving the first gay porn producer who manages to work “Reap my whirlwind” into a script.
But I’m getting a little off-topic. The point is this: you and I ranty liberal bloggy types already knew full well that opposition to every progressive development of the last 50 years has come from an increasingly irrelevant, diminishing branch of extremist Christianity. In the next battle, let’s shout it from the rooftops.