Its amazing. We have the keys to manipulate life at the genetic level, we have the capacity to go into space, we have the technology capable of destroying all life on the planet several times over. Hallmarks of a technologically advanced species to be sure, but our emotional and social growth seems to be slacking. The lack of maturity we bear in this respect makes our potentially unethical use of these fundamentally amoral tools a dismal, looming likelihood. It also increases the probability that we will fail to apply this technology in ways that could be of the greatest benefit to our survival and growth as individuals as well as a species.
We stroke the ego, bloated and hardened by the friction offered by the pace of our ten to twelve thousand run in the realm of domesticated ape-hood, considering ourselves a higher species. Yet one is forced to remind oneself of that as a mantra, a loud mantra aiming to be heard over the continual onslaught of evidence to the contrary when you read, watch, or listen the news, when your ears cannot help but pick up the dialogues of those oh-so-many idiots we are subjected to as we plow through our daily lives, holding our soul’s breath beneath the relentless teeth of the gears grinding on our backs as we bear the daily grind of our unenlightened social system. Our eyes are just as viciously attacked as we mindlessly surf statuses and images intended to be clever on those popular social networks.
Given the clear and ever-observable fact that the means shape the ends, it seems that the goals, targets, trajectories of our attitudes towards social systems are rather important things to consider: they are the seeds destined to germinate in the future. Gestating in the minds of the many, destined to be born as an actuality eventually. So the fact that most people tend to focus on what they feel is the right way of life for everyone rather than the way of life that would provide the greatest potential freedom for everyone is a tendency that concerns me. Comedian Bill Maher once referred to this as “legislating taste,” and that seems accurate enough a portrayal of the circumstance of which I speak.
Utopia is an impossibility, most rationally-minded people will agree, simply because when it comes to living a satisfying way of life people do not agree on the details, and in fact their individual notions regarding what constitutes “the good life” are often diametrically opposed. It seems to me that too many people fail to procure the greater message out of that argument, and fail to perceive the solution provided by considering the problem as stated. If utopia is an impossibility as we do not all share notions of what a satisfying life entails, than the closest possible approximation to utopia one can hope to achieve is a social order which strives to achieve and maintain a social climate that provides the greatest amount of personal freedom. Despite this, you listen to the media, to those around you, and you read online, blown away that there is still debate over whether two people with the same style of genitalia deserve legal recognition of a marriage.
Comedian Doug Stanhope said it best, methinks, when he argued that marriage should not be a legal institution at all, as the government should be forced to look upon you as an individual — no more, no less. Legally recognizing two people as one is the kind of slippery-slope absurdity that could lead to the legal recognition of, say, corporations being individuals. What a weird world that would be to live in, you know?
Pushing that aside, however: as my favorite lesbian has put it to me, homosexuals deserve to be miserable just like everyone else. It seems rather crazy to me that anyone would be against same-sex marriage, and the reasons people have given have struck me as endlessly insane.
“Next thing you know, they’ll be holding weddings where people are marrying, like, a squash and having legal recognition and benefits.”
Though it was not a squash but a fruit or vegetable of some kind, this is essentially a line I’ve heard from people, their face carrying a seriousness that turned my initial humor towards their comment into pure fucking horror. Are you truly this stupid? People are denied their fundamental liberties because you feel your right to be an ignorant douche trumps all? If homosexual couples can finally receive recognition of their right to marry, I’m not going to start picketing about my rights as an isolationist masturbator to wed by right hand. And how this could open the floodgates of picketing vegisexuals, I will perhaps never understand.
“It will ruin the institution of marriage!”
Again, might I remind you: the divorce rate is around fifty percent. The half that didn’t last certainly didn’t work out, but have you taken a good look at the state of the relationship of the many marriages that have lasted? Ever notice the high level of infidelity? The half that last do not all define a successful marriage by any truly meaningful measure, so pull your head out of your ass and stick a cork in it. There are some people who do compliment or compensate each other quite well, and it is just as likely that they are a pair of Slot-B’s or a pair of Tab-A’s than the “conventional” opposite-sex pairing. So recognize the right of each to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness and meanining in their own diverse way, recognizing that we are not all the same inside, and see the beauty in the diversity that serves to increase the survival and growth of our species on multiple levels.