Catholic Culture Liturgical Living
Catholic Culture Liturgical Living

Gay Marriage and the Next Gulag

By Dr. Jeff Mirus ( bio - articles - email ) | Jul 05, 2011

In a Mexican case, Fr. Hugo Valdemar was found guilty on July 1st of illegal political activity because he stated that Catholics should not vote for candidates who support same-sex marriage. Fr. Valdemar’s defense is that he wasn’t speaking against a particular party but was merely stating the teaching of the Catholic Church. But the particulars of charge and counter-charge do not make a great deal of difference, apart from the strategies they suggest for legal maneuvering. There have been many similar stories over the past few years from around the world, especially in Canada and Europe. The writing is on the wall. Gay marriage is the lie that will create the next Gulag.

Indeed, gay marriage is the perfect totalitarian wedge, not least in a country like the United States, which has been capable of believing itself uniquely dedicated to liberty even in the midst of slavery and abortion. We Americans, it seems, will be quite willing to sing the praises of our liberty no matter how many of us lose it. It is our national myth, something we worship. But the cause of gay marriage fits the myth better than most issues because it really does seem that those who oppose it are denying life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to others. This denial can be accepted for the unborn, in the name of the liberty of their mothers, as it once was accepted for African Americans, who shared judicial non-personhood with the unborn. But gays are well-educated, wealthy and—above all—a logically favored projection of our moral culture. To inhibit their happiness, for any reason, seems just plain wrong.

Why should this be? First, it is necessary to note that the word “gay” refers not to those with homosexual inclinations but to those who champion behavior based on these inclinations as good. In fact, homosexuals who are not gay are a sign of contradiction to the gay world. They are scorned accordingly, in ways that even straights are not. The key to understanding the whole matter is that to be gay or to support the gay lifestyle is to approve and promote sterile sex.

The Western world in general has been hard at work promoting sterile sex for nearly a century now. We began by sanctioning the break-up of families through ever-easier divorce. Divorce is a kind of pretense that the marital covenant is ultimately sterile, in the sense that children do not matter. Next we embraced contraception so that our sexual pleasures could not be diminished through responsibility. Promiscuity inevitably followed, and with it abortion, which is simply fruitfulness in denial. We’ve covered our eyes and stopped our ears. “Nyah, nyah, nyah, I can’t SEE you! I can’t HEAR you!”

A culture like this, a culture which embraces these values, has no argument against homosexual sex, no case against homosexual marriage. A huge percentage of our marriages are deliberately and totally sterile; most of the rest are deliberately sterile much of the time. Huge numbers of marriages, by deliberate design, result neither in children to preserve the race nor in future citizens to enhance and develop the social order. There is no conceivable public interest in such unions, and no significant personal interest in them either, apart from the fuel they temporarily provide for the couple’s doomed egoism à deux.

Far from having a natural revulsion against homosexual intimacy, modern Western culture can hardly help seeing it as the jewel which crowns and protects its own warped vision of sex. We recognize and defend a right of men and women to engage in sexual intimacy without fruit. It follows that rank prejudice must be the only reason anyone could possibly oppose the same freedom between men and men or women and women.

No group is more hateful to modern society than the perceived moralistic prigs who, out of what most perceive as religiously-motivated prejudice, seek to diminish the personal sexual liberty of others. Nothing could be more obvious in our current culture than that such people must be silenced and, if necessary, restrained. Moreover, it seems only right and just that their denunciation of the gay lifestyle and their opposition to gay marriage should be criminalized. In fact, it should be criminalized in the name of liberty. That is why gay marriage is the lie that will create the next Gulag.

The insistence on ignoring vice is the hallmark of a debased culture, but the insistence that a lie be publicly affirmed as true is the hallmark of ideological totalitarianism. Such lies are always accompanied by the monopolization of education and other forms of thought control, and this is always made easier by the sad fact that huge numbers of people are convinced that those who are targeted are getting exactly what they deserve. The slightest intellectual resistance is perceived as a grave threat to peace and order. The truth becomes subversive. To speak the truth makes one either a social pariah or a traitor. The most obvious of realities must be denied. The most obvious of facts must be hidden. The most obvious of statements must be unsaid.

It is difficult to see anything that can be done about this without massive personal reform. Within the dominant culture, there is really no way to gain any traction to push back. The only thing that can possibly help is for those who oppose gay marriage to start living according to the understanding of sexuality communicated by the natural law. And almost the only way to do that in a culture incapable of recognizing the natural law is to seek the clarity and strength provided by Christian Revelation and grace. In other words, the only way to reverse the trend is to live the whole truth, sustained by Faith, rather than merely to argue about this or that part of it.

This means creating families and even whole communities marked by permanent marriage and fruitfully responsible sex, a lifestyle which—once one recovers from the initial shock—leads first to a deep sense of security and ultimately to a rich happiness. It is fair to say, I think, that commitment to and communication with reality invariably produces these remarkable results. But the time for lip service is long past. The ultimate answer to every Gulag is the affirmation of truth through life—a vibrant demonstration that Christians have more heart to lose than pagans have to win.

It is important, too, that this witness be corporate, that is, visible not just in a few individuals but in a community which professes a Creed. This is another reason for continuing to improve discipline in the Church, and quickly. The Church need not (and should not) encompass only perfect Christians, but within broad limits, her members need to be at least willing to try the life she offers them.

After all, if we accept the Truth, we also believe, though perhaps sometimes only in a dim sort of way, that we will suffer under the impact of thwarted reality in this life and under divine punishment in the next, if we simply ignore what we believe. On precisely this point, St. Peter offers the wisest of counsels:

Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is right? But even if you do suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts reverence Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence; and keep your conscience clear, so that, when you are abused, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing right, if that should be God's will, than for doing wrong. (1 Pet 3:13-17)

Too often those who revile the behavior of Christians have no cause to be put to shame. This must change. Nothing else will work.

Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and See full bio.

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  • Posted by: - Jul. 11, 2011 2:49 PM ET USA

    if My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7: 13-15. Amen

  • Posted by: frjpharrington3912 - Jul. 10, 2011 12:40 AM ET USA

    In his "Farewell Address" President George Washington warned us about these things when he said, "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports." If you consider the licentiousness of the pagan Roman Empire in which the Church was born we have only to read the New Testament to witness the "moral miracle" of the empire's conversion to Christianity achieved by the Church through the power of Holy Spirit.

  • Posted by: pannw - Jul. 07, 2011 1:24 AM ET USA

    I am convinced that the acceptance of homosexuality won't be the specific cause of our downfall, but it is rather the sign that the downfall is near, due to our acceptance of abortion, contraception, warned by Saint Paul in Romans 1. How anyone could read that and not see the exact state of the USA is beyond me. Like Lot, I hate living in Sodom, so the only questions are, how long before God puts it out of our misery and how long will the gulag be in service? God have mercy.

  • Posted by: Bernadette - Jul. 06, 2011 10:10 PM ET USA

    "God's ways are not our ways" and He is allowing this evil to happen. We all brought it about in one form or another. No one can claim that he did not contribute to the disgusting moral morass we find ourselves in. We deserve it. We are all sinners. Now, what do we do? We are going to be persecuted. Some of us will be led off to prison. Only a remnant will remain. Only the very faithful, and holy, and little. We must remain strong, faithful, speak out, frequent the sacraments, PRAY!!!!

  • Posted by: - Jul. 06, 2011 8:27 PM ET USA

    A cogent, accurate assessment. The problem with gay marriage is that it is the next logical step off the cliff, rather than pulling back to reality. But even if gay marriage is defeated, we are still headed off the cliff unless we have a change of heart.

  • Posted by: paul20105493 - Jul. 06, 2011 4:12 PM ET USA

    This addresses exactly what I have seen as the difficulty in defending true marriage - both against gay "marriage" and against contraception. The arguments for true marriage are theological, based on man's relationship with God and the purpose of our sexuality. But since the reasons and understanding are theological, how do you debate with and convince someone who doesn't share your theology? This includes Protestants (usually regarding contraception) as well as people who are purely secular.

  • Posted by: JohnVIII - Jul. 06, 2011 3:59 PM ET USA

    You left out one important factor - the teaching of Vatican II that the primary end of marriage - the begetting and education of children and the secondary end - conjugal love were now equal.

  • Posted by: wojo425627 - Jul. 06, 2011 1:52 PM ET USA

    I think we are going to have to start talking about how we as Catholics are supposed to live in this secular and anti-catholic culture and climate. What do we now need to do to live the faith and pass on the faith to our children and what are we to do to help keep them from falling away or becoming absorbed into the secular culture? Are we going to be forced underground like the Chinese church or the early church in the Roman empire during the persecution? How do we survive?

  • Posted by: rjdobie9424 - Jul. 06, 2011 10:51 AM ET USA

    All is ready for the imminent appearence of the Anti-Christ. I am more and more convinced of it. Everything seems to be in place religiously and ideologically. Time to re-read my copy of O'Brien's "Father Elijah"!

  • Posted by: mgreen32234 - Jul. 06, 2011 10:18 AM ET USA

    I'm a New Yorker where the lie is now law. This is a second 9/11. Where do I sign up to fight for holiness?

  • Posted by: - Jul. 06, 2011 4:33 AM ET USA

    Visitors have seriously been telling you that you're off the mark on THIS? I don't know how the ideas you've laid out could be any more obviously true. Various interests certainly have long since demonstrated to me that "tolerance" doesn't extend to Truth.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 05, 2011 10:57 PM ET USA

    Catholic orthodoxy requires that we believe that there is objective truth. What Mr. Mirus writes above about our culture in decline and its obsession and promotion of homosexuality is -- objectively true and will always be true. Yes, we need to get prepared for the "hate crime" lawsuits. "Insistence on ignoring vice is the hallmark of a debased culture, but the insistence that a lie be publicly proclaimed as true is the hallmark of ideological totalitarianism." Powerful because it is so true!

  • Posted by: - Jul. 05, 2011 10:24 PM ET USA

    That's the truth of it.

  • Posted by: Chestertonian - Jul. 05, 2011 9:54 PM ET USA

    Jeffrey, I would say that the gulag already existed from the moment the APA changed their policy and stopped calling same-sex attraction a disorder--and the rest of society rolled over and accepted the change without a peep. Gay 'marriage' is the guard tower from which our liberty will be shot down trying to break free. It is a symptom of the underlying, deep-seated disorder which silence enables; silence of both the Church and secular society, both of which are threatened with extinction.

  • Posted by: nanajessey2119 - Jul. 05, 2011 9:02 PM ET USA

    As frightening as this piece is I think that it is wonderful. It hits the nail on the head. You can almost see our wonderful country going down. But Jesus is with us. Thanks Mr Mirus.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 05, 2011 7:55 PM ET USA

    Sad, but what you say is true. Someone once said something to the effect that if God doesn't chastise America, then He owes Sodom and Gomorrah an apology.