Home > Abortion, Same Sex Marriage > Why Life is Winning

Why Life is Winning

June 18th, 2011

by Maggie Gallagher, founder of the National Organization for Marriage

Some say that no one will oppose gay marriage a few decades from now. They used to say the same about abortion.

When I was, well, a few years younger than Tim Muldoon is today, the message of despair now directed at marriage was directed at the pro-life movement. All the powerful elites favored abortion. Media coverage of anyone who was pro-life was dreadful. All the wives of Republican power-brokers favored abortion rights. If you said you opposed abortion, people would shout, “You are calling my sister a murderer!” They informed me that by the time I turned 50, the pro-life movement would be dead because young people were so pro-choice.

I’m 50 now, and yet the pro-life sentiment is surging as today’s young people are more pro-life than their elders.

How did that happen?

There are many ways to answer that question, and what I offer here is more of a missing piece-the role of politics in cultural change-than a comprehensive theory.

This is a part of what I saw happen in the last thirty years:

Led by people of faith, and above all by the Catholic Church’s principled and prescient stand, pro-lifers formed coalitions across faith groups and built intellectual institutions to develop and sustain ideas (like Human Life Review), as well as messaging and lobbying institutions to shape the political process.

Pro-lifers (eventually and not without great internal struggle with purity issues) identified achievable political goals to keep hope-and influential organizations-alive. Pro-lifers organized politically and effectively. They helped elect presidents, senators, congressmen, governors, and state legislators who promised not just to support their values but to vote on specific issues to limit abortion.

In doing so, prolife leaders successfully raised the cost to pro-abortion-rights elites of their hateful, denouncing, stigmatizing rhetoric. Eventually Democratic elites decided that it was just too expensive to go on losing elections by talking that way. So they muted their rhetoric. “Safe, legal, and rare” became the Democrats’ Clintonian new mantra.

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  1. June 20th, 2011 at 07:57 | #1

    I don’t think that these are a valid comparison. Allowing couples to marry is a far cry from terminating pregnancies. Don’t get me wrong, I’m about as pro-choice as you can get, but even I see the difference. One encourages loves and familial stability and equality. The other ends potential lives. To imply they are the same is misguided. Today’s young people will continue to support marriage equality, even as more and more of today’s older people are doing in increasing numbers. Just look at how close the vote will be in New York’s legislature this week in regards to same-sex marriage. Even if we lose, we will lose by one or two votes as opposed to last year.

  2. Sean
    June 20th, 2011 at 14:52 | #2

    Comparing feelings about abortion to feelings about same-sex marriage are apples to oranges. Discriminating against a group because of religious bigotry and animosity is not the same as favoring or disfavoring a medical procedure. Opposing equal rights for gays and lesbians represents a majority favoring itself with special privileges, in this case, marriage rights.

    Abortion potentially affects everyone, and so however we decide to deal with it, we all rise and fall together. That’s not the case when a majority reserves a right for itself, but denies it to a group is doesn’t approve of.

  3. John Noe
    June 20th, 2011 at 16:47 | #3

    Great blog and this offers hope for the future. Back then through education the people saw the wrongs of abortion and did not give up. This will happen even more in the future with regards to SSM.
    Let us face facts. We were not paying attention and we got SSM shoved down our throats. Now we are organized and fighting back. As we educate the voters and they are allowed to see the negative effects on society with SSM we can turn back the tide. I see us winning future elections by even larger margins. When the people are allowed to vote on the issue we are undefeated. The only time SSM wins is when they lie, cheat, and bribe. They either use the courts or take advantage of politicians accepting bribe money like the ones in NY.
    Let us keep up the fight. Future elections will hinge on this issue. Look at New York. The RINO’s who voted for SSM will pay for their actions at the next election.

  4. June 21st, 2011 at 06:40 | #4

    @Sean There you go playing the victim card by claiming “bigotry and animosity.” Yep, just marginalize and dismiss the debate. No one opposes equal rights for homophiles – we oppose special rights, such as the oxymoron SSM. You say abortion potentially affects everyone but neglect to admit that SSM also affects everyone. No one is denying any group anything except the “right” to redefine society.

  5. June 21st, 2011 at 13:45 | #5

    Also, I don’t think anyone claims that no one will oppose same-sex marriage decades from now. After all, 46% of Republican Mississippians oppose inter-racial marriage almost half a century on from Loving v. Virginia. But that doesn’t undermine the fact that anti-miscegnation laws are unconstitutional and immoral. So who does Ms. Gallagher claim is saying that NO ONE will oppose same-sex weddings?

  6. Sean
    June 21st, 2011 at 15:56 | #6

    “No one opposes equal rights for homophiles – we oppose special rights”

    So why do you support special rights for heterophiles? Why do they get marriage rights, but gay and lesbian Americans don’t?

    “You say abortion potentially affects everyone but neglect to admit that SSM also affects everyone.”

    Gay couples are marrying in several states and foreign countries. Tell us how you’ve been affected by this.

  7. Ruth
    June 21st, 2011 at 18:42 | #7

    @Sean
    Redefinition of anything affects anyone who has any interest in that thing.
    Calling the Emperor “clothed” affects the meaning of clothing and nakedness for everyone.

  8. June 22nd, 2011 at 08:39 | #8

    @Emma As usual with homophiles, you brought in miscegenation. Prohibiting marriage based on skin color had no legitimate reason; it was all racism. There was no biblical basis, no moral basis, no scientific basis, no medical basis and not eve a social basis other than racism. It was still the joining of members of the opposite sex, still contributed to the family unit and society as a whole. Skin color is morally neutral. SSM has legitimate reasons for being denied:
    Biblically it is against God.
    Morally it is sexual relations outside of real marriage.
    Scientifically it is against nature
    Medically it is a hazardous practice physically and psychologically.
    Socially, it is destructive to society as whole and contributes nothing to family structure.

  9. June 22nd, 2011 at 08:42 | #9

    @Sean Normal people don’t have special rights to marry because the marry within the qualifications of the definition. Homophiles want the special right to redefine what marriage is so as to qualify, yet they don’t want anyone else to have the same special right of redefinition.

    I have demonstrated to you many, many times how SSM in any country or state has caused great harm to everyone who objects to it. You keep plugging your ears and covering your eyes because you don’t want the truth.

  10. Marty
    June 22nd, 2011 at 10:21 | #10

    Apples v Oranges…?

    I wonder, which is worse? Depriving a child of his father because of your own bias against men? Or depriving a child of his life, because kids are so darned inconvenient and poorly timed?

    PS: Sean: show me any marriage law anywhere in the country that requires one to be heterosexual to marry. Just because you’re not into girls doesn’t mean anyone is depriving you of the right to marry one. That’s your choice, freely made.

  11. Sean
    June 22nd, 2011 at 19:29 | #11

    “Sean: show me any marriage law anywhere in the country that requires one to be heterosexual to marry.”

    Marty: every marriage law that limits marriage to opposite-sex couples only is, in essence, requiring someone to be a heterophile, as Glenn likes to call them. Even the Prop 8 defense didn’t try to say that gays have the right to marry, just so they marry someone of the opposite sex. Every court in the country agrees that opposite-sex couple only marriage laws discriminate against gay people. They differ, however, in whether this discrimination is constitutional or not.

    Feel free to keep pushing the “but they can marry, just so they marry someone of the opposite sex!” line; it merely demonstrates that there is no rational public purpose in letting straight couples marry, but not gay couples.

  12. June 23rd, 2011 at 13:27 | #12

    Glenn E. Chatfield :
    @Emma As usual with homophiles, you brought in miscegenation. Prohibiting marriage based on skin color had no legitimate reason; it was all racism. There was no biblical basis, no moral basis, no scientific basis, no medical basis and not eve a social basis other than racism. It was still the joining of members of the opposite sex, still contributed to the family unit and society as a whole. Skin color is morally neutral. SSM has legitimate reasons for being denied:
    Biblically it is against God.
    Morally it is sexual relations outside of real marriage.
    Scientifically it is against nature
    Medically it is a hazardous practice physically and psychologically.
    Socially, it is destructive to society as whole and contributes nothing to family structure.

    Paul mentioned three things in the Bible that were unnatural: homosexuality, long-haired men, and short-haired women. Why only have it in for the first group? Or do you also hate hippies?

  13. June 23rd, 2011 at 13:29 | #13

    Glenn E. Chatfield :
    @Sean Normal people don’t have special rights to marry because the marry within the qualifications of the definition. Homophiles want the special right to redefine what marriage is so as to qualify, yet they don’t want anyone else to have the same special right of redefinition.
    I have demonstrated to you many, many times how SSM in any country or state has caused great harm to everyone who objects to it. You keep plugging your ears and covering your eyes because you don’t want the truth.

    “Homophiles,” as you so quaintly put it, are normal too. Or do you think God just kinda screwed that one up?

  14. Ruth
    June 23rd, 2011 at 18:39 | #14

    @Emma
    Romans 1 reveals the progression of perversion.
    It begins with worship of the creature, rather than the Creator, as do the arguments that seek to establish perversion in society.

  15. June 24th, 2011 at 09:58 | #15

    @Emma You are as bad as Sean when it comes to misunderstanding the Scripture and taking things out of context. As pointed out to Sean, perhaps you should read this passage: “But to the wicked God says, ‘What right have you to recite my laws or take my covenant on your lips? You hate My instruction and cast my words behind you.’” Psalms 50:16-17

  16. June 24th, 2011 at 09:59 | #16

    @Emma God condemns homosexual behavior. There is nothing normal about homosexual relations.

  17. Sean
    June 24th, 2011 at 15:06 | #17

    Homosexuality is entirely normal! God even made homosexuals and it’s becoming a great question, “How many gay people does God have to make before everyone realizes He wants them around!”

    Scripture is irrelevant in the making of laws in a secular country like the US. The proof is that all religious prohibitions are legal in the US.

  18. Betsy
    June 24th, 2011 at 17:45 | #18

    Funny how when you use God on your side in an argument, you call him “He” and give him capital letters. But when you use God against your so-called religionists it’s lower case “she.” Make up your mind.

  19. June 25th, 2011 at 16:07 | #19

    @Sean God didn’t make homophiles. HELLO?!?! He made Adam and Eve and the rest of the population came about by procreation. And Adam and Eve were not homophiles. There is nothing normal about homosexual behavior and you know it. Biology 101 proves it. It isn’t just a “religious” issue, it is a societal issue.

  20. Sean
    June 26th, 2011 at 08:43 | #20

    Betsy, I am an equal opportunity deist: god’s a she one day, and a he the next. That’s fair, isn’t it? I wasn’t intentionally distinguishing in the way you suggest, but I’m glad you’re keep score. Good for you!

  21. Sean
    June 26th, 2011 at 08:44 | #21

    “God didn’t make homophiles. HELLO?!?! He made Adam and Eve and the rest of the population came about by procreation. And Adam and Eve were not homophiles. There is nothing normal about homosexual behavior and you know it. Biology 101 proves it. It isn’t just a “religious” issue, it is a societal issue.”

    God made both homosexuals and heterophiles! S/he’s responsible for all of mankind, not just the parts you like. Homosexuality is completely normal, obviously. And some people are bisexual, with longings for both males and females. They get more choices and more variety!

  22. June 28th, 2011 at 08:21 | #22

    @Sean You are just being obtuse by forcing your religious beliefs into the subject. Your false god does not exist. The God of the Bible, the only true God, made human beings to couple between male and female, and condemned homosexual behavior as an abomination. You continue to attack any religious argument presented by Christians, but you present your religious argument as your basis for your belief that homosexuality is normal. Pretty hypocritical.

  23. Ruth
    June 28th, 2011 at 15:13 | #23

    @Sean
    “Longings” define normalcy?

  24. Robert
    June 29th, 2011 at 10:01 | #24

    In Frace were I thought they were so liberal just let the world know that marriage is still and always between a man and a women, this is natural. I was reading in a book about homosexuality and it has allot to do with the absence of love between a boy and his father and a mother and daughter, without that love bond, the child is searching for a relationship from a same sex partner, this was a study and finished in 1978. ( Homosexuality, by Charles W. Socarides, M.D. )

  25. Irene Swanson
    June 29th, 2011 at 11:39 | #25

    Matrimony: noun; the state or ceremony of being married; marriage. Origin: late Middle English via Old French from Latin matrimonium; based on mater, matr- ‘mother.’ (From my on-line dictionary.) Ahem…..marriage was, is and always be ordered to the begetting and rearing of children. It’s origins are based in the very idea of motherhood. Same sex couples cannot beget children as we all know, because of the biological limitations in the sex act. The sex act in SSM is ordered to selfish pleasure, much like contracepting couples and not to the begetting of children, which would make them “other” centered. Children were meant to be conceived and reared within a family unit consisting of a mother and a father, for life. Period. Redefining what marriage is to suit/accommodate today’s various types of relationships and redefined family units can never be “marriage.” Unions, yes, marriage, no. Give it up, already.

  26. June 29th, 2011 at 12:03 | #26

    God created Adam and Eve so they could procreate and populate the world. This world would be in bad shape if they hadn’t followed God’s laws. We were given Free Agency so we could Prove ourselves which is our purpose to be here. We can choose to be homosexual but it means we made a wrong choice. If I had a homosexual child I would not disown them but I would be brokenhearted. I have been married to my eternal companion for 58 years and I love him more than I did when we first married. We have five children, thirteen grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren. They bring us so much joy and happiness.

  27. June 30th, 2011 at 10:22 | #27

    @Ann Moon We were given free agency to “Prove” ourselves, nor will we be married eternally – Matt. 22:29-30. What you are preaching is LDS theology.

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