About the Upcoming Manhattan Declaration 2.0

While same-sex marriage in all fifty states may appear to be a foregone conclusion, a group of what this article calls “a high-profile alliance of conservative Catholics and evangelical Protestants” is convening to issue a new call to arms against what they consider to be a “graver threat” than divorce and cohabitation:

http://www.religionnews.com/2015/01/28/top-catholics-evangelicals-gay-marriage-worse-divorce-cohabitation/

There is no direct link to this proclamation, since it won’t be published until the March issue of conservotrad journal “First Things.” But since it’s supposed to be a follow-up to 2009’s “Manhattan Declaration,” I think we can expect the following:

  • unconvincing attempts at trumpeting the timeless nature of “traditional marriage”
  • complaints that modern society doesn’t respect “traditional marriage” or the people who believe in it
  • a long explanation about why same-sex marriage is an oxymoron based on their understanding of “traditional marriage”
  • several paragraphs on gender essentialism, complete with veiled digs against trans people
  • a paragraph or two on the “complementary nature” of the two genders, with some barf-worthy references about how the teleological end of womankind is motherhood
  • mis-appropriation of MLK and the Civil Rights mantle to cloak themselves in moral righteousness (bonus points if there’s an out-of-context “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” reference)
  • warnings that a failure to respect “traditional marriage” will lead to social chaos, the legalization of polygamy, polyamory, bestiality, incest, and relations between humans and inanimate objects (okay, maybe not the last one)
  • concluding remarks about how evangelicals and conservotrads will stand united against this tyranny, even if the Supreme Court of the United States says otherwise (exactly what form this resistance will take will not be outlined)

And there you have it. I’ve written it, so you won’t have to read it. But in all seriousness, I do think that if the SCOTUS rules that same-sex marriages must be performed in all fifty states that there will be some social turmoil, at least in the Deep South, a region with a long history of throwing governmental tantrums. I predict that the more progressive areas like Atlanta, Birmingham, the Research Triangle, and maybe New Orleans will be spared the worst, but there will still be major picketing at courthouses. If a same-sex couple attempts to get married in somewhere like Yazoo County, Mississippi and it goes without a hitch, I would be truly shocked. The social pressures to be pious and closeted in the rural South may discourage any LGBTs from attempting to get a marriage license.

It will be interesting to see whether white evangelicals and conservotrads in red states will be willing to make nice with black and Hispanic Christians to fight against same-sex marriage. My guess is probably not. Whatever feelings black and Hispanic religionists may have about LGBT rights, they’re not stupid enough to ally with the religious right, which tends to be openly hostile to non-whites. Aside from a few outliers like Alan Keyes, Ben Carson, and Herman Cain, movement conservatism has limited appeal to non-whites.

Assuming the South doesn’t go into full “Massive Resistance” mode again (discussed here: https://extraecclesiamestlibertas.wordpress.com/2015/01/27/massive-resistance-the-squeakquel/), perhaps evangelicals and conservotrads will engage in long-range subterfuge, which is the tactic they’ve taken with abortion. Since Roe v. Wade, the anti-abortion movement has been working to make abortion legal but difficult to obtain by passing legislation that makes getting an abortion an onerous and expensive process (e.g., waiting periods,  unnecessary waiting periods, banning medicine abortions, slapping clinics with ridiculous rules and regulations for clinics, requiring abortions to be paid out of pocket, etc). For more information about the difficulty of obtaining abortion services in red states, please see the following links:

http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2014/10/abortion_clinic_crisis_women_of_texas_could_have_to_drive_up_to_600_miles.html

http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/06/the-rise-of-the-diy-abortion-in-texas/373240/

http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/mississippis-last-abortion-clinic-stay-open-now

I’m not sure how the same tactic could work against same-sex marriage in particular or LGBT rights in general, but I’m sure someone at “First Things” is already hard at work, trying to formulate a plan.

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