On May 17, conservative pundits reacted to Massachusetts becoming the first state to allow same-sex couples to marry. One compared May 17, 2004, to September 11, 2001. Another asserted that "marriage between a father and a daughter" or "two widows, or two sisters or two brothers" could be next, while yet another warned that "tomorrow it will be polygamy, and the day after tomorrow incest, and then the final frontier... bestiality." One critic went beyond discussing marriage to refer to hate crimes as what "years ago we used to call ... good morals." Here's a rundown:
Daily Crosswalk.com columnist Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and host of the daily Christian radio show The Albert Mohler Program, wrote a column titled "A Day That Will Live in Infamy -- May 17 in Massachusetts." From the column, which originated on Mohler's blog at Crosswalk.com (a for-profit Christian organization) and was featured on the homepage of right-wing news website NewsMax.com:
Like mile-markers in time, certain calendar dates stand in memory as not only historic, but momentous. Dates like December 7, 1941 and September 11, 2001 represent far more than mere days on a calendar. Now, May 17, 2004 must be added to that list. Why? Because today -- by the unilateral decision of activist judges -- the State of Massachusetts will legalize same-sex marriages. This is a day that will live in moral infamy... The attacks on Pearl Harbor, New York, and Washington awakened the nation to peril and called citizens to action. That must happen once again, as millions of Americans must now awaken to the fact that an out-of-control judiciary and an army of social engineers are forcing their will upon us. If the Massachusetts decision is allowed to stand, this nation faces nothing less than moral disaster. America is now a nation at war with itself, and with marriage.
On FOX News Channel's May 17 edition of Hannity & Colmes, guest James Dobson, Ph.D., the founder of the conservative Christian organization Focus on the Family, which supports amending the U.S. Constitution to bar same-sex couples from marrying and encourages readers: "In Defending Marriage--Take the Offensive!" by working to prevent the marriage of gay couples -- said the following:
[O]nce you cross that Rubicon, then there's no place to stop. Because if a judge can say two men and two women can marry, there is no reason on Earth why some judge some place is not going to say, this is not fair. Three women or three men, or five and two or five and five... So you could have polygamy. You could have incest. You could have marriage between a father and a daughter. You could have two widows, or two sisters or two brothers. Once you start that and put it in terms of rights, where somebody says, why should I not have benefits if they get them? Then it's gone. You've undermined the entire legal foundation for the family.
Boston Herald columnist Howie Carr, in his May 17 column, titled "Can't take this Gay State," wrote:
[E]veryone has to pretend that this will be the end of it. You will be hounded by the PC Police if you state the obvious, that if the perversion du jour is "gay marriage," then tomorrow it will be polygamy, and the day after tomorrow incest, and then the final frontier ... bestiality.
On MSNBC's May 17 edition of Scarborough Country, guest Paul Morton, International Presiding Bishop of the Full Gospel Fellowship and Pastor of the Greater St. Stephen Missionary Baptist Church, went beyond discussing marriage rights for same-sex couples to say this about hate crimes:
Marriage in this nation is going the way of Sodom and Gomorrah was totally against God, and, of course, it was destroyed because of low morals. We are talking about hate crimes now and calling it hate. Years ago we used to call it good morals, but now it's called hate. I think we have our agendas confused.