Thursday, November 6, 2008

How Strong is Language?

How strong is the value of language concerning when THE PROTECTION OF A DEFINITION OF A WORD becomes more important that EQUAL HUMAN LIFE?

You win. Language must be stronger than god if the definition of a word is worth discriminating against and hurting millions.

I've never been more unimpressed and impressed at the same time.

I've just realized the deeper meaning of INSANE. Pinch me when it's over.


Anonymous said...


I've been thinking the same thing these past couple of days, and was just considering posting something about it myself.

With all that we've discussed to this point regarding language and the production/finding of meaning, I am very interested to see how others respond to the fact that debate over the meaning of one word can have such an enormous effect.

As far as language is concerned, I think there are two significant things to consider in this debate.

One) I am puzzled by those that contend that marriage has always been about one man and one woman, as it seems quite obvious that hasn't been the case for many cultures, including some facets of American culture. And even if it were the case, that marriage had ALWAYS been between ONE man and ONE woman, what salvation is there in tradition? I think there is a fundamental flaw in arguing tradition as a reason for any action without first proving why tradition itself is something worth defending.

Second) This dedication to strictly defining ONE word seems to be a very dangerous precedent. The thing that concerns me most is, where does this stop? I think one of the most fascinating aspects of language is the tendency it has to be fluid and to shift meaning as society changes. In creating stiff boundaries and definitions, don't we in effect do that to our society? With the drive to define marriage, what will stop us from moving forward now to define God, America, Right, Morality, etc.? I think we are treading on very thin ice in this situation, but I'm also curious to see how other people feel about this.

Jorgen said...

You're right.

And, in reality, even to those defending the definition of marriage, it is REALLY about defending THEIR SPECIFIC CONCEPT OF THE DEFINITION OF MARRIAGE. There were definitions of "marriage" before this definition, I'm sure.

Unfortunately, many people don't realize the affect this has on those people who the debate ACTUALLY CONCERNS. Ban or Approve, the majority will live their lives with no effect or change WHATSOEVER. However, if you happen to be in the minority, it effects every aspect of your life. And this should be taken into consideration before anything else. Who are these laws hurting and who are they helping?

There is a bottom line to this (for me). The foundation of all of this, which infuriates me with its absurdity, is inarguably the case that most of these people vote for a BAN on gay marriage (or vote to "protect the definition of marriage" because they view it as a SIN (as something evil). Unfortunately, this entails viewing LOVE BETWEEN TWO RATIONAL ADULTS as EVIL? I cannot even comprehend this and so I will end here.

I couldn't stop myself from venting this morning (much briefer than I wanted to). If anyone wants to read about my dissatisfaction you can do so here: