Rick Santorum: US Marriage Equality Will Destroy Moral Foundation Of The World

By Rika Christensen | 6 July 2015
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Rick Santorum at the Conservative Political Action Conference 2015. (Talk Radio News Service / Flickr)

Rick Santorum is no fan of the Supreme Court’s marriage ruling, that’s for sure. He sees it as a major disaster, particularly where morality is concerned, because legislating morality is what this country is all about. According to a story in The Huffington Post, Santorum is worried that, with the legalization of same-sex marriage in all 50 states, we’re going to throw off the moral foundation for the rest of the world. Oh. Noes.

First of all, we’re hardly the first country to make same-sex marriages legal. Ireland did it through referendum earlier this year. Canada has had legal same-sex marriage for a decade. Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark have marriage equality on their books (oh wait, all of Scandinavia is socialist. Darn). Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and even South Africa have marriage equality. Pretty much all of Western Europe has it. So what’s Santorum’s problem?

His problem is very likely tied to “American exceptionalism,” in which we’re the leader of the free world, economically, militarily and morally. If we had fought and defeated marriage equality here, we’d have set a fine moral example for the world to follow, and other countries might have realized they were wrong (especially those evil socialists up in Scandinavia).

This is one of the problems with the religious right. They trumpet American freedom, and how we’re an example of freedom, and yet, they work to keep certain groups from enjoying certain freedoms. They have a very strong “us versus them” mentality. In this case, the “them” is the people who are stealing their religious freedom, somehow, by allowing and supporting marriage equality.

Santorum also argued that the Supreme Court made marriage about more than procreation. According to the HuffPo piece, he believes marriage has always been about the children, which is a very familiar talking point for the religious right. They don’t know their history, though; marriage has changed many times, even in the Bible. It was never just about children. The nuclear family he believes is the cornerstone of society is a fairly recent development in human history.

Furthermore, that argument still falls apart when you consider all the couples that can’t have children and can’t afford to adopt, or who choose not to have children at all, but still marry. They like to say that straight couples could have children naturally, even if they decide not to, or actually physically can’t, and that’s enough. But same-sex couples? We can’t have them marrying, because they can’t have children naturally. That sets a bad example for the rest of the world, too. Will someone please think of the children?!

So, to recap, Santorum says that we’re the moral leader of the free world, and we need to prove it by denying rights and freedoms to groups of people that his religion doesn’t like. How can we call ourselves “exceptional,” and a world leader in anything, with this coming from the religious right? We can’t. It’s not the Supreme Court that’s wrong. It’s Santorum, and everyone who thinks like him.

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