Upon reading the Rubin: “Thinking Sex: Notes for a Radical Theory of the Politics of Sexuality,” a common thread of belief was again introduced; this is the Domino Theory of Sexual Peril.  The belief states that if one type of “sexual deviance” is allowed, then it opens up a vast array of deviances that naturally have to be allowed for “fairness and equality.”

At first I just read this argument and immediately thought Reductio ad Absurdum – a logical fallacy.  This is to say that to allow same-sex marriage, one must automatically let people marry animals or paper towels.  While many people would consider this absurd, as the leap from same-sex marriage to bestiality is quite a large gap, we must remember that to some people homosexuality and bestiality is equality wrong.  To many people there isn’t so much as sex hierarchy but just what is right and what is wrong and to cross the line is to open up the field for all that is wrong.

While I may laugh at some of the ignorance (perhaps especially Rick Santorum who I can contribute paper towels), when looking back at history and some of the arguments to support same-sex marriage, their Reductio argument has a semblance of truth.

There were many marriage debates in the history of mankind on what is allowed in marriage and what is not.  Looking back to the Ancient Greeks, marriage was supposed to be between a man (usually in his 30s) and a young woman (probably in her early teens).  We may look at this now say this is a sexual deviance but this is “tradition.”  However, when Americans say tradition they usually mean Christian tradition so let’s go back to early Christians were women were property.  No, that’s too far back, we don’t believe in that tradition anymore.  Moving forward we see that mixing religions was not allowed, a Christian shouldn’t marry a Jew without someone converting or receiving a blessing from a clergyman.  I’m sure many people at that time argued against the sanctity of marriage and argued that allowing any deviance is against the natural order of things.  But this involves a voluntary choice of religion so let’s move forward to something more concrete.  Oh yes, race.  Along with not being able to mix religion in couples, you’re not supposed to mix the races.  While this could be more backlash from slavery where people of mixed races were actually marrying property, items not people, and that was wrong.  Well, slaves were freed and the stigma stuck.  It wasn’t until 1967 with Loving v. Virginia that the Court legalized interracial marriage in all states.

1967 wasn’t too long ago and some of the same people who were against interracial marriage are probably still alive today.  They have seen marriage redefined in their lives and are seeing it again today.  LGBT groups have not, and no doubt will continue to cite Loving v. Virginia in the case for same-sex couples to be wed without government intervention.  This is a very obvious case where allowing one deviance will lead to allowing another.  For many (hopefully a majority) of Americans that can see that a same-sex couple is not equivalent to bestiality, for the people who only can see deviance as right and wrong they have to believe that allowing any marriage deviance will lead to all the others.  In this case Reductio ad Absurdum holds up.

However, as a self-described intelligent individual, I can see same-sex couples as two consenting adults who’ve committed themselves to each other.  This is nothing unlike “normal” marriage.  Other such deviances such as bestiality or pedophilic marriages I can see as not meeting that condition and should thereby never be allowed.  Even extreme cross-generational marriages such as a couple made up of a 18-year-old and a 60-year-old is legal, which admittedly may make me cringe a bit, but I’m not about to argue that their love isn’t valid.  While arguers of Reductio ad Absurdum believe that the line has been crossed and the line can never be drawn again because it will continue to shift, I have faith that rational individuals can see where the line REALLY is and this will always hold up.

–Brian Falatko

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