Same Sex Marriage and Artificial Insemination
By eradicating the significance of the functional complementarity between men and women, those with ardent feminist agendas and with other ulterior motives may be seeking to (ultimately) undermine the humanity of males in our society; in other words, if men are already being pushed out of the lives of their children through systemically biased divorce and family law courts, then suggesting that men are not needed for the procreative process, either (courtesy the wide-spread use of artificial insemination), may lead to a general sense that maybe men are not needed for anything – be it in the professional workplace or in the home. In the end, with sex-specific abortions now becoming popular in Canada, a wholesale assault upon male fetuses and upon males in general could result. Finally, there is sufficient evidence out there highlighting the negative effects of households headed by homosexual couples upon children for society to re-examine its current acceptance of the idea that homosexual couples (perhaps couples inseminated by artificial means) should automatically be given right to be parents. In the end, too many questions have been left unanswered – and it may be our children who suffer as a result.
In his searching examination of same-sex marriage and its ethical (and pragmatic) viability, William E. May notes that the book of Genesis holds both men and women to be equal – to be complementary partners in a union created by God. More than that, the ancient and authoritative biblical texts make it abundantly clear that God is the creator of marriage and that this union is to be a personal and intimate one wherein man and woman unite in one body (by choice) and remain locked in this embrace for all-time. In effect, spouses are “non-substitutable” entities that must be linked to one another (May, “Marriage and the Complementarity of Male and Female,” 1-5). To put what has been stated above in the simplest terms, May is suggesting that the Holy Scriptures expressly call for marriage to be a partnership between equals, a union that is to be entered into freely, and a union that is to remain in place until (literally) death separates the pair. Seen in that light, there is really no place for homosexual unions insofar as the Scriptures call for man to be conjoined to woman – not man to be conjoined to man or woman to woman (May, “Marriage and the Complementarity of Male and Female,” 2-3; for a further defense of the idea of complementarity, please see May, “On the Impossibility of Same-Sex Marriage,” 6-7).
The reasons why homosexual union appears to be frowned upon by the Church ties into the notion of complementarity; that is to say, pairs of men and pairs of women cannot conceive children via natural means. In short, the procreative process (at least if it involves natural means) is only possible if one man and one woman are involved. As May understands the matter, (natural) fertility is a blessing of God and demands the active participation of both genders. More than that, the ability to procreate gives human couples the creative power that would otherwise be limited to God alone; thus, the natural process of mating is an act that should not be trifled with inasmuch as man and woman – in their natural states as God designed them – have been rendered in God’s image (or at least man has been rendered in God’s image) and have been given the responsibility of carrying out a procreative act sanctioned by the Almighty (May, 5). Clearly, man and woman have been designed the way they have for a reason, and it would be unwise to alter this complementary state by allowing lesbians to become pregnant via artificial insemination.
Moreover, it is fair to ask what ulterior purposes lurk in any effort to rend man from the procreative process. At the present time, it is surprisingly difficult to find scholarly articles that detail and measure the degree of bias that exists against father seeking custody of their children in Canada. However, there has certainly been a sense that Canadian law, Canadian child services agencies, and political elites (each for its own reason or reasons) have all favored women over men in custody and child visitation battles – with children becoming undeserving victims in these situations (Sillars, 39-42). As one can reason, if there is a general sentiment that fathers should not have generous visitation rights, and if statistics indicate that less than 10 percent of single-parent households in Canada are headed by a man (Denike et al, Myth 1) then it is plain to see that fathers are not being sufficiently encouraged to participate in the raising of their children; indeed, there may even be an active movement afoot to discredit them as care-givers and to harass them out of pursuing greater involvement in their children’s lives. For a good example of this sort of mind-set, please refer to a web page maintained by Simon Fraser University’s Feminist Research Education Development and Action Center wherein it is stated, quite frankly, that fathers who petition the courts for greater access to their children and for a greater involvement in their lives are simply doing this so that they might “harass” their ex-spouses (Denike et al., Myth 2). Clearly, this sort of aggrieved material is proof of a broader effort to undermine the contributions of men to families and to the lives of their children.
If what has been stated above is at all true (and it is hard to argue that it is not) then the next logical step on the part of those favoring artificial insemination for lesbian couples is for them to challenge the entire notion of “complementarity”; specifically, if fathers are not needed for child-rearing (or at least are not valued as child-rearers), then why should women have to endure men in the procreative process itself? The ultimate effect of this is to make men dispensable in a fundamental and troubling way – and, given as our society now has the technology available to permit wealthy women to engage in sex-specific abortions, it may not be long before male fetuses are aborted strictly because of their sex and because they are not needed in a world where artificial insemination, affirmative action programs and controversial child custody battles have all conspired to make roughly half of the population unwanted and unneeded. While it should certainly not be over-stated, any broad policy measure that diminishes the humanity and importance of any group of humans (especially those who are viewed as less important simply because of their gender) is one that desperately needs to be reviewed – and the insemination of lesbian couples is surely one such item.