David van Gend – The Australian 3 June 2013
Atheist philosopher Bertrand Russell said, “It is through children alone that sexual relations become of importance to society and worthy to be taken cognisance of by a legal institution.” The legal institution of marriage is, as anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss puts it, “a social institution with a biological foundation”. Our marriage laws and customs exist to reinforce this biological foundation, helping bind a feral-by-nature male to his mate for the sake of social stability and the child they might create. Not all marriages create children, but typically they do, and the institution exists for the typical case. Self-evidently, homosexual relationships cannot create children, so society has no institutional interest in regulating such friendships; they remain a private affair.
Gay lobbyist Rodney Croome denies all this dreary biology (The Australian, May 30). He seems to write in ignorance of the facts of life: “The link between marriage and children is not about the ability to procreate.” What is more bewildering is that Kevin Rudd (see his Blog) should come to share Croome’s quest to break this natural link and so deny a child’s birthright to both a mother and a father.
I write as a family doctor for whom the question of same-sex marriage centres on one fact: that the marriage of two men means a motherless family. This is because marriage is a compound right including the right to found a family, so we cannot separate same-sex marriage from same-sex parenting. Any child created artificially within the “marriage” of two men must miss out on a mother. That’s why same-sex marriage is wrong….