I’ve often heard you say, “Why shouldn’t we let two loving same-sex people marry?” My question: why two? If your only retort to “Why two?” is a variant of “That’s absurd” or “I won’t answer” then you concede the argument. If you cannot provide a cogent defense of these or other reasonable questions, we must assume you haven’t any justification for your beliefs, and that the sole reason you want what you want is that you want it and that you should have it because you want it.
I’ll assume you have an answer to “Why two?”, which might be this: marriage has always been, except in rare instances, between two people. This is true. But then marriage has always been, except in rare circumstances, between a man and a woman. History and tradition are not on your side. If you embrace tradition for “two people” you must embrace it for “man-woman” because tradition is both conditions, held simultaneously, not either condition held singly. I’ll tell you why I think two: because two is natural, because two is one mom plus one dad, because two is built into nature. That’s the scientific answer. A man-woman coupling is how genes are passed on. Even considering the exceptions (like harems), two is the vastly, most overwhelmingly common option, everywhere and at all times. Then the exceptions were mostly one-man-many-women, and actual instances were as rare as lottery wins, available only for those at the pinnacle of certain societies (circumstances which made women scarce or nonexistent for those in the lower echelons). Yes, there were historical pockets of one-man-having-relations-with-one-underclass-boy, but that wasn’t marriage, just an age old form of dissipation.
Again I ask you, why two? History is no guide, neither is nature. Why two? Because marriage just “feels” like two people? It does, too, and for the reasons I’ve given. But it doesn’t “feel” like anything but George plus Martha to me. Are feelings all we have? Marriage doesn’t feel like two to, for example, Boris Dittrich, the “father” of SSM in the Netherlands who “has admitted that group marriages of three or more people, is the next, inevitable logical step in the dismantling of the western world’s traditional marriage laws.” Dittrich is far from alone in believing he has an unanswerable argument that once natural rights and tradition are abandoned “marriage” may be defined as anything able to make its way into law. (Later I mention those who would wed animals.) How do we respond to Dittrich? Once you abandon the naturalness of man-woman mating and raising of children as irrelevant, there is no logical reason not to accept Dittrich’s desires. “Marriage” is the state between any-sized groups of people who agree to call themselves wed.
You might concede marriage doesn’t have to be two people, but two is what most seem to want. If enough people want a thing, thus it should be so? As in, if 50.1% of the country agreed to call two men who wanted to “cohabitate” be called “married” then they are “married.” That right? My dear, this is no good. To paraphrase your mother, if 50.1% of the country agreed to walk off a cliff, would you, too? This suggests an impermanence to morality, that right and wrong are subject to fad. This is not problematic for traffic laws, but deeply troubling for fundamental, foundational matters. What if the country (government, people, or both) decided that a certain demographic group would be better off underground? That has certainly happened, but if you say votes decide morality, then you cannot complain.
Suppose you are a resident of North Carolina, where the people have spoken and opted to stick with tradition by amending their constitution to say marriage is only man-woman. If truth is decided by a vote, the position these people haven taken is therefore not wrong, and must be accepted as right. When you cross the border into North Carolina, you too must believe same-sex “marriage” is wrong. Since it is wrong, and since voting decides what is right, then it would incoherent of you to agitate against the law.
Your hope now is that (in the USA) the Supreme Court decides SSM is a right. They might; it is even probable. But what happens if the states rebut by passing a Constitutional Amendment à la North Carolina? Would you then accept SSM is wrong? Or would you still believe it moral and that the majority is wrong? If so, then you have admitted that truth cannot be decided by a vote, that there are right and wrongs not subject to whim or opinion, that morality is objectively true.
I agree. Now all we have done so far is to argue whether the State, i.e. the government, can arbitrarily decide (as they did in North Carolina) what marriage is. Since (as we just proved) because the people by vote cannot do so, it follows the State (formed of people) cannot either. We now have to sort out what marriage is. We’ll do that next.
Warning Tolerance is a hallmark of those supporting same-sex marriage. Never will you find proponents employing abuse, vituperation, appeals to emotion, or angry senseless shouting. They do not label their opponents enemies, nor accuse them of being hate-filled. They instead use calm, logical, well-reasoned argument; they understand rational and sincere people may disagree on certain points. I therefore expect supporters of traditional marriage to act similarly. Comments which do not accord with ladylike or gentlemanly behavior will be ruthlessly expurgated.