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Author Topic: Yahoo News: Pope wades diplomatically into gay marriage debate  (Read 678 times)
Alan
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« on: June 15, 2013, 06:02:46 AM »

Yahoo News: Pope wades diplomatically into gay marriage debate
http://news.yahoo.com/pope-wades-diplomatically-gay-marriage-debate-125515261.html

First, I wonder just how much of the discussion between the archbishop of Canterbury and the pope had to do with gay marriage.  Another story from the Vatican News Service about the meeting of the two hardly mentioned marriage, and not gay marriage at all.

That said, I'm not trying to get into an all-out discussion of gay marriage on this, but there is one paragraph in the article that stands out like a sore thumb for me, because ever since I was an elected conservative Republican I have recognized how people voting according to the "Five Non-Negotiable" issues, end up losing their cases.  It was just that mentality that caused the most staunch, pro-life Republicans to lose a battle against late term abortions in Kansas while I was actually an elected pro-life Republican and spoke to some of them personally about it.  As I tried to tell them, they could have won if they'd played their cards smarter instead of clucking about how pure and non-negotiable were their positions.  I've written about it before and probably will again, but this article from Yahoo News has another very good example of losing because of being non-negotiable.

And who pushes the "five non-negotiables?"  Catholic Answers is one of the strongest voices of it, and in fact CA got started from Keating writing political pamphlets about how to vote.  A summary of the mentality is the "Voter's Guide to Serious Catholics" that Catholic Answers is famous for.

Richard Rohr speaks of the conflict of the "five non-negotiables" and Jesus's teachings in the video: What did Jesus Really Teach?"

So in the article that is the subject of this thread, these paragraphs stuck out at me like it had flashing lights:

As archbishop of Buenos Aires, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio didn't shy away from voicing strong opposition to gay marriage, though he was pragmatic in sensing Argentina was heading in that direction.

Realizing the church couldn't win the fight outright, Bergoglio urged his fellow Argentine bishops to lobby for gay civil unions instead, according to the then-cardinal's authorized biographer. The bishops shot down the proposal and the church lost the issue altogether when the South American nation legalized gay marriage in 2010 the first country in the region to do so.

Bergoglio once called gay marriage an "anthropological step backward."

"If there's a private union, then third parties and society aren't affected," he wrote. "But if they're granted marriage rights and can adopt, there could be children affected. Every person needs a masculine father and a feminine mother to help them settle their identity."


What's interesting to me is that Francis recognized at the time that all-out opposition was not the best strategy, but the bishops chose the "non-negotiable" route and they lost the issue altogether.  Would they have lost the issue had they lobbied for civil unions in favor of marriage?  We don't know and we'll never find out because the bishops didn't listen to Bergoglio at the time, and they did lose.  So they refused to give up some ground, but lost it all.

I see a similar thing happening in the US; we might have been able to steer the debate into "civil unions" but since conservatives opposed that, the liberals just might win the Big One.  I'd like to get more into Church v politics and non-negotiables and all that, but suffice it for now to say that Pope Francis shows critical thinking when it comes to strategy, instead of just making a dualistic non-negotiable stand that is doomed to fail.  And this applies to any issue we try to carry into politics and be "non-negotiable" about.

Alan

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