Using non-religious arguments, a new book says that “gay marriage” is just the latest in a cultural trend of rationalized sexual misbehavior that is undermining society and suppressing those who object.
“We have to stand up in the first place and tell the truth,” Robert Reilly, the author of “Making Gay Okay,” told CNA May 14. “People are getting rolled on this issue because they don’t know how to stand against it.” Contemporary cultural pressure now makes it “increasingly harder, if not impossible, to speak out for virtue or to call society to any form of moral health,” he said. Reilly is a former adviser to the Secretary of Defense and was a special assistant to President Reagan. His book, from Ignatius Press, examines how homosexual acts became rationalized through the rejection of a morality based on human nature. Targeted advocacy in the psychiatric professions, in law, in education, in the military, and in U.S. foreign policy has made approval of homosexual behavior increasingly institutionalized and mandatory. He said many people now see voicing objections to “gay marriage” as a “career killer” that will result in the loss of their jobs. “If you speak up against the celebration of homosexual marriage, it is you who will be discriminated against and removed,” he said. He cited the legal cases against businesses with moral objections to cooperating in same-sex ceremonies and the pressure placed on former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich who resigned after “gay marriage” activists fanned controversy over his donation to a California ballot measure that defined marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Reilly recounted his own experience of this pressure when President George W. Bush in 2002 named him director of Voice of America, U.S. government’s official broadcasting institution. The broadcaster’s board of governors reviewed his appointment. Reilly’s critics produced small packets delivered to the board members “in plain brown envelopes” denouncing him as a “homophobe.” His critics had cited an article Reilly had written about the rationalization of moral misbehavior. The article focused on abortion, but also called homosexual acts “inherently disordered.” “I had to sit with adults for two days discussing if my having written that disqualified me to serve as director of Voice of America,” he recalled. “That was back in 2002. Can you imagine today? I would never be appointed.” Reilly rejected claims that moral opposition to homosexual acts is a result of prejudice. Rather, opposition is a “result of judgment, rationally reached, about the moral character of an act.” However, he suggested that opponents of this behavior have relied too much on religious arguments. “Making Gay Okay” presents non-religious arguments against homosexual acts. He said that the rejection of some sexual behavior as immoral results from an examination of the human body. “There doesn’t seem to be any problem in admitting to the natural ends of our other bodily organs. Nobody would deny the eye is for seeing or ear is for hearing,” Reilly said. The purpose of the sexual organs is “quite clear,” he continued, noting their procreative purpose and their function in unifying man and woman in a permanent union. He added that anal intercourse between men is a “highly hygienically compromised act that ends up killing people.” Reilly suggested that the rationalization of homosexual behavior has increased in power “because there are so many forms of sexual disorder in our society.” People engaged in their own sexual misbehavior will rationalize the vices of others. “Every form of sexual misbehavior sort of reinforces the other forms of it and expands the community for this rationalization,” he said. Noting an increase in anal intercourse among heterosexuals, he called the phenomenon a “cross-pollination in sexual misbehavior.” Reilly suggested that the legalization of contraceptives set in motion the rationalization of such behavior. First the drugs and devices were legalized for married couples, then for all adults, then for minors. Reilly suggested that the U.S. legalized abortion in part to avoid the consequences of contraceptive failures. These cumulative precedents then led to the declaration of the unconstitutionality of anti-sodomy laws, which in turn set a precedent for a 2013 ruling on “gay marriage” that has provided considerable momentum in its favor. Reilly rejected selective moral disapproval of homosexual acts, emphasizing that all human beings are flawed. “We are all disordered in our passions, all of us are,” he said. “There’s nothing unique in a particular kind of disorder, it’s just one of a variety.” Those with disordered dispositions “deserve a tremendous amount of compassion. But that compassion has to include the truth.” He also said that “gay marriage” is a “counterfeit” that, like counterfeit currency, devalues the real thing. Reilly encouraged those opposed to immorality and the redefinition of marriage to speak their views. “When unreality is being enforced upon us, we must resist it and refuse to participate in it,” he said. “This is going to make life harder, and for some people it is going to make it very hard. But I am afraid that is the price of truth. What is the alternative?” he asked.