This article was originally published on Medium.
Last May, my wife and I traveled to New Haven, Connecticut for the graduation of our oldest son, Michael, from Yale Law School. At the reception following the ceremony, he introduced me to a number of his professors and classmates. With so much litigation surrounding the issue of gay marriage then as now, the topic inevitably came up as students, their parents, and professors stood around sipping cocktails. As one might expect, the mood in this environment was decidedly pro-gay marriage.
As we peeled away from one such gathering, Michael made this observation:
Yale Law is the most powerful legal institution in the world, and it has consciously and deliberately used its endowment, its prestige, and its political clout to recruit the best and the brightest in order to pool their talents and focus them for a singular purpose: the legalization of gay marriage.
This was a revelation. I mean, it was certainly no shock to discover that Yale Law was a bastion of liberalism or that it largely recruited like-minded people, but I had never thought of it as something quite so organized, so purposeful as that. Its liberal bent was, I thought, more incidental to the institution than orchestrated. Voicing this to Michael, his reply was chilling:
Oh, no, it has been very purposeful. Activist students have been systematically chosen and then trained to construct plausible legal arguments for the advancement of gay marriage. And now, having largely carried the day on that issue, the law school is retooling to take down the last major bulwark of legal resistance to their social agenda: religious freedom.
More than a revelation, this was alarming and, a year later, it appears prophetic.
Recently the New York Times published a column by Frank Bruni titled “Bigotry, the Bible, and the Lessons of Indiana.” In it, Bruni quotes Mitchell Gold, an LGBT advocacy group leader, as saying that “Church leaders must be made to take homosexuality off the sin list.” There are many things that I find offensive about a statement like this, not the least of which is the idea that Christians are the ones who determine what sin is and is not. It is a central tenet of Christian theology that sin is defined by God and is outlined in his mega-bestseller, The Holy Bible.) But for the sake of a discussion that is not confined to those of us who are interested in Christian teaching, I will focus on that which is of interest to us all:
Bruni uses a word here that cannot be overlooked: made. That means coerced.
Of course, Bruni is paraphrasing/quoting Mitchell Gold. Surely the New York Times columnist, a man ostensibly for diversity and all of that, does not share such a shocking opinion. But then Bruni, and, by implication, the newspaper he represents, outs himself as a would-be ideological tyrant:
[Gold’s] commandment is worthy — and warranted.
Worthy? Warranted? Not only are Christians to redefine millennia of doctrinal belief, but they are, for all practical purposes, to edit the Bible itself to conform to a modern social agenda. The directive, says Bruni, is nothing less than a “commandment.”
Thus Sayeth the Left.
Speaking as he does with such moral absolutism, I can’t help but ask an obvious question: from what, where, or who, precisely, does Mr. Bruni take his moral cues? Christians take theirs from the Bible, which is a constitution of sorts. That the Judeo-Christian tradition has provided the moral and intellectual underpinnings of Western Civilization for roughly 2,000 years is hardly arguable. It has served as the basis for every major reform movement from Abolitionism to the Civil Rights Era. But what are Bruni’s moral judgments — judgments that he would have enforced on the rest of us — based on? It seems he takes it from the prevailing cultural zeitgeist (German, the word means “spirit of the age”). But that is no basis at all.
The arrogance of such a column goes without saying, but that the column should be published at all is significant. More than a column, it is an agenda. It is a manifesto. Now that broad cultural tolerance for homosexuality has been achieved — and that was, we were told, all they wanted — the gay lobby is preparing for the next phase:
Forced ideological conformity.
Perhaps you are not a Christian. Perhaps you are not religious at all. And it may well be that you have no objection to homosexuality or gay marriage. But my guess is that you value your right to observe the dictates of your conscience. We are advancing to a new stage in the cultural war; a stage where tolerance of an agenda driven by those who hold the levers of power will not be enough. You must accept and endorse it.
Conscience be damned.
Image Credit: Alejandro Escamilla