As conservatives make their case against marriage equality, they’ve found themselves stuck arguing that biological procreation is what counts and then trying to explain how infertile opposite-sex couples are okay. San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, who is considered the father of Proposition 8 and who will be speaking at the National Organization for Marriage’s march next week, fell into just this trap in an interview with USA Today.
Here’s how he tried to explain why marriage is still appropriate for opposite-sex couples who cannot conceive but not for same-sex couples:
CORDILEONE: Our bodies have meaning. The conjugal union of a man and a woman is not a factory to produce babies; marriage seeks to create a total community of love, a “one flesh” union of mind, heart and body that includes a willingness to care for any children their bodily union makes together.
Two men and two women can certainly have a close loving committed emotional relationship, but they can never ever join as one flesh in the unique way a husband and wife do. [...]
Treating same-sex relationships as marriage is the final severing by government of the natural link between marriage and the great task of bringing together male and female to make and raise the next generation together in love.
Conservatives have proven repeatedly, particularly in recent weeks, that they are incapable of acknowledging that same-sex couples are already raising children — and effectively at that. What Cordileone’s actually saying here is that gay couples’ relationships are simply inferior to straight couples’. This argument has nothing to do with children; it’s just plain bigotry.