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Thursday, June 16, 2011
NOM = OAGR
NOM, if you didn't know, stands for National Organization for Marriage.
Now in fact, as it happens, NOM has bugger all to do with marriage, at least the heterosexual kind. It's not campaigning against heterosexual divorce. It didn't condemn the sperminator for serial infidelities with his wife's maid in their own house. It's silent on heterosexual adultery. It offers no tips to heterosexual married couples about how to sustain a difficult marriage.
Nope. It's opposed to gay marriage and civil unions, even though its stated mission is "to protect marriage and the faith communities that sustain it." Like other ChrisTaliban bodies such as Focus on the Family, it believes that allowing two men to get married somehow destroys heterosexual marriage. Bizarre. It also works to oppose and prevent gay and lesbian couples adopting, though quite what this has to do with marriage is not at all clear.
When I attempted to discuss this with them on their blog, they at first responded indignantly and then refused to post my response. It was clear that they were not prepared to be rational, not prepared to discuss what they believed without parroting dogma and slogans. When I pointed out that Jesus doesn't mention homosexuality -- not once! -- they argued that St Paul spoke with His voice, so He did, really. There ya go. When I mentioned love one another as I have loved you, they said their opposition to us was "tough love". Now you understand. How stupid of you to have thought they hated us!
They repeatedly mentioned that they were in favour of "traditional marriage", whatever that is. Come to think of it, we're in favour of traditional marriage too. You know, dressing up, a ceremony, the until-death-do-us part stuff, to cherish and love and honour. With this body I thee worship. Penguin suits, and confetti and joint mortgages. The right to be with our spouse in hospital. To be recognised by society and the law as a couple. That's precisely why we want gay marriage. We're sick of the nontraditional marriage which has been foisted upon us. We're strongly in favour of traditional marriage.
They decline to disclose their donors despite court orders, leading some to conclude that so-called NOM is a front for a handful of mega-rich Catholics. Their Wikipedia entry is instructive. Very, very instructive. Read it. The Southern Poverty Law Centre has declared it a hate group, right down there with the Ku Klux Klan, the neo-Nazis and other low-life mouth breathers.
Before the Russian revolution, the majority faction in the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party accepted the term Menshevik, though it means minority, allowing their opponents to use the term Bolshevik which means majority. Over time, this came to be the truth. Words mean something. Would Russian history have been any different if the more liberal and open "Mensheviks" had taken power in 1917 instead of the "Bolsheviks" who, under their new name of "Communist" went on to impose a vile and lethal tyranny on Russia and its satellites? Who knows? But certainly accepting such a dismissive label didn't help.
So let's not call this bigoted and vile organisation the National Organization for Marriage. That's bullshit. Let's instead call it the Organisation Against Gay Rights, or OAGR, with Maggie Gallagher (its head and spokesman) the chief ogress. This is an altogether more satisfactory image. If you must refer to NOM or DOMA (the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act") or "Focus on the Family" (pull the other one, it's got knobs on), always preface your reference with "so-called" or perhaps even "soi-disant" which is French, is pronounced swa-dizahn (more or less), and is much ruder. Give them no quarter when you talk about them. They give us none.