The Instigator
Freeman
Pro (for)
Winning
30 Points
The Contender
whatledge
Con (against)
Losing
24 Points

The pope should bless a gay marriage.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/17/2010 Category: Religion
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 4,570 times Debate No: 12365
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (40)
Votes (13)

 

Freeman

Pro

Pope Benedict XVI should publicly recant his current views about homosexuality and bless a gay marriage in order to demonstrate his sincerity. While this idea may seem silly and even absurd to some, the benefits of such an event simply cannot be overstated. If the pope were to bless a gay marriage, the lives of millions upon millions of gay people would improve. This event would almost certainly ensure that gay individuals would get bullied and mistreated less as the views of Catholics slowly evolved to become more progressive. Moreover, given the number of Catholics in the world, this tolerance would spread all across the globe at every level of society. Of course, many Catholics would probably be upset and confused by such a reversal from the pope, but this shouldn't concern us. For now, it is worth observing that the pope could make a drastic increase in the amount of human wellbeing in the world by his decision to bless a gay marriage.

C1: The world would be a better place if the pope blessed a gay marriage.

The pope is undoubtedly one of the most influential Christians in the world. If he were to come out and publicly show his support for gay marriage, it would certainly have a positive impact on the way other Christians viewed and treated individuals who happen to be gay or bisexual. Further, such an event would encourage the 1 billion Catholics in the world to have less harsh views about homosexuality. [1] And since many Catholics are in high positions of power across the globe, it seems likely that this event could truly have positive effects across the entire planet. Of course, societies are always more functional when there are less hate crimes and feelings of animosity towards any group of people for arbitrary reasons. Therefore, this renewal of tolerance is not just in the best interest of gay people; it is also in the best interest of society as a whole.

Furthermore, let's not forget what's at stake here: one-third of all the teenagers who commit suicide are gay. [2] While I do not possess the necessary training in sociology to do a proper meta-analysis of the data on the studies that confirm this, it seems clear that these results are partly the end products of cultures that have gone out of their way to demonize homosexuality. As such, it is likely that more tolerant and open societies are less likely to create a harmful environment for gay citizens. Additionally, there are virtually no drawbacks to the pope blessing a gay marriage, and the benefits of such an event are simply extraordinary. Consequently, the pope should help reverse the Catholic Church's current positions on gay marriage.

::Conclusion::

The pope's decision to bless a marriage between two people that are gay would be one of the most influential acts of compassion and love the world has ever witnessed from a major religious figure. Christianity would become more tolerant and inclusive if the pope began to work towards ending the Catholic Church's discriminatory views about gays. As a result of this event, people that are gay would likely experience less mistreatment. It is, of course, highly improbable that the pope would bless a gay marriage. But this is of no importance. The fact that the pope probably will never do this does not indicate that he should not do this. Given the outstanding benefits that this proposal could bring, one thing is obvious: there are simply no good reasons to suppose that the pope should maintain his current views about homosexuality and refuse to bless a marriage between two people of the same sex.

Sources:
1. http://en.wikipedia.org...
2. http://www.healthyplace.com...
whatledge

Con

I thank Mr. Freeman for starting this debate, and look forward to a fun debate.

C1: The world would be a better place if the pope blessed a gay marriage.
I fully agree with C1, the world would, indeed, be a better place if the Pope were to bless a gay marriage. However, let us first look at the world from a Christian perspective. What would qualify as "a better world" for a Christian? Or better yet a religious leader like the Pope? Christianity is based solely on the Bible, and their morality is subject to the morality the Bible teaches (Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13, Romans 1:26-27, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, 1 Timothy 1:8-10 [1]).

Based on the moral principles of the Bible, it is rather clear that homosexuality is immoral. If the Pope truly had faith in the teachings of the Bible, and his morality was dictated by the Bible, to the Pope, condemning gay marriage is in the best interest of the world. "The world would be a better place if the pope blessed a gay marriage." Again, as much as I agree with this statement, in the Christian perspective, and in the perspective of the Pope, supporting an immoral cause is not making the world a better place. If the Pope ignored the blatant disproval of homosexuality as taught by the Bible, it is a direct disagreement to what all Christians abide by, the Bible. For the leader of the Christianity to directly disagree to the Bible, makes it seem as if the Pope has more authority than the Bible, and only weakens his credibility, further making his beliefs insubstantial. There is no objective discernment of morality. To the Christians the world will be a better place if the act of homosexuality (immorality) is condemned.

Therefore, the resolution: "The pope should bless a gay marriage." is negated. As there is no objective discernment of morality, we cannot simply disregard the Christian Code of ethics and morality. If the Pope is, and I assume that he is, sincere about his faith, then he should not bless a gay marriage, under the pretense that it goes against the objective morality dictated by the Bible, the word of God

Sources:
[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 1
Freeman

Pro

Let me begin by thanking Whatledge for his willingness to debate this topic with me. We seem to have some noteworthy disagreements. For starters, my opponent's only argument is simply a red herring. I don't need to prove that morality is objective in order to demonstrate why the Pope should bless a gay marriage. Whatledge states that objective morality does not exist, and he is certainly not alone in his sentiments. People say this all the time, as though it were a self-evident fact of nature. As a matter of fact, it isn't. But let's not even concern ourselves with this for the moment. As I've pointed out earlier, the Pope's decision to bless a gay marriage has tangible and real benefits that are desirable. If my opponent wants to sufficiently demonstrate why the Pope shouldn't bless a gay marriage, then he will have to demonstrate why gay youth suicides, hate crimes and discrimination against gay individuals are inconsequential. If he can manage to do this, then I strongly encourage everyone to vote against the motion.

C1: The world would be a better place if the pope blessed a gay marriage.

I am really unsure where to begin. My opponent's only argument has a hole in it so wide that someone could practically fly a Boeing 747 through it. In Whatledge's last round, he claimed that the Bible condemns homosexuality. I fully concede this point, although I am aware that some religious leaders would disagree with me. By itself, this fact is nothing special. There is simply no rational reason to think that the Bible's morality is just as valid as any other system of ethics. If anyone really tried to follow the Bible word for word, they almost certainly would become a psychopath. Sam Harris, one of the "four horsemen" of the "new atheism," sums up this point with traditional candor and clarity.

"The notion that the Bible is a perfect guide to morality is really quite amazing, given the contents of the book. Human sacrifice, genocide, slaveholding, and misogyny are consistently celebrated. Of course, God's counsel to parents is refreshingly straightforward: whenever children get out of line, we should beat them with a rod (Proverbs 13:24, 20:30, and 23:13–14). If they are shameless enough to talk back to us, we should kill them (Exodus 21:15, Leviticus 20:9, Deuteronomy 21:18–21, Mark 7:9–13, and Matthew 15:4–7). We must also stone people to death for heresy, adultery, homosexuality, working on the Sabbath, worshiping graven images, practicing sorcery, and a wide variety of other imaginary crimes.

Most Christians imagine that Jesus did away with all this barbarism and delivered a doctrine of pure love and toleration. He didn't. (See Matthew 5:18–19, Luke 16:17, 2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 20–21, John 7:19.) Anyone who believes that Jesus only taught the Golden Rule and love of one's neighbor should go back and read the New Testament. And he or she should pay particular attention to the morality that will be on display if Jesus ever returns to earth trailing clouds of glory (e.g., 2 Thessalonians 1:7–9, 2:8; Hebrews 10:28–29; 2 Peter 3:7; and all of Revelation)." [1]

It should therefore be obvious that we are all perfectly free to disregard numerous parts of the Bible, even if we happen to be Christian. Personally, I am not a Christian; this is not my problem to solve. I don't care how Christians attempt to reconcile their beliefs with modernity, but they must do this in order to be civilized. Thus, it would be a good idea if Christians disregarded the hateful passages of scripture and placed a heavy emphasis on the good parts.

::Conclusion::

Clearly, we can all agree that homophobia and discrimination are deeply immoral. Insofar as anyone disagrees with this statement, we can rightfully disregard their opinion. People that believe arbitrary forms of discrimination are justifiable are simply ignorant about many aspects of psychological health and human wellbeing. As I have stated earlier, the world would be a better place if the Pope decided to bless a gay marriage. There would be less discrimination and hate crimes against gay individuals, and society in general would be more functional. My antagonist simply hasn't given any coherent reason to suppose that this isn't true. Obviously, my opponent has failed to show why the Pope should refuse to bless a gay marriage. Consequently, it would be a good idea for the Pope to bless a gay marriage, since this proposal has numerous positive benefits.

Sources:
1. http://www.secularhumanism.org...
whatledge

Con

"As I've pointed out earlier, the Pope's decision to bless a gay marriage has tangible and real benefits that are desirable."

I explain again, that if the Pope was objective to his moral principle, as taught in the Bible, the "benefits" are simply not benefits according to what the Bible teaches. The Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin, and that homosexuality is immoral, therefore the Pope must abide by it. For that is what "benefits" the world, according to his belief.

Note: I emphasized benefits, as what is beneficial to a Christian is different from what is beneficial to a secular humanist.

C1: The world would be a better place if the pope blessed a gay marriage.

"In Whatledge's last round, he claimed that the Bible condemns homosexuality. I fully concede this point, although I am aware that some religious leaders would disagree with me."

So, we agree that the Bible condemns homosexuality.

"By itself, this fact is nothing special. There is simply no rational reason to think that the Bible's morality is just as valid as any other system of ethics."

I agree, but this is hardly the issue. To a Catholic, and especially to the Pope, the Bible's morality is absolute. It is not a matter of which system of ethics is more valid, it is the matter of what the Pope and the Christians/Catholics believe. A beneficial world for a Christian is a world without immorality. My opponent conceded that the Bible condemns homosexuality; it is evident that in the Christian worldview, homosexuality is generally frowned upon as immoral. The Pope would be betraying the Bible's moral principles, was he to support a gay marriage. Just as Mr. Freeman has said, "There is simply no rational reason to think that the Bible's morality is just as valid as any other system of ethics." This works vice versa. Therefore, we cannot negate the Christian code of ethics, especially when it is the Pope, who is in question.

"If anyone really tried to follow the Bible word for word, they almost certainly would become a psychopath. Sam Harris, one of the "four horsemen" of the "new atheism," sums up this point with traditional candor and clarity."

If they look at it metaphorically, the "psychopath" issue is easily avoided. For example, proverb says, put to death a child, who smites his father. If we take this metaphorically, it still implies smiting one's father is immoral. The moral message it spreads is evident, even if not taken literally. Meaning, homosexuality is still immoral in the Christian view, but not to the literal extent, where homosexuals should be stoned.

"It should therefore be obvious that we are all perfectly free to disregard numerous parts of the Bible, even if we happen to be Christian."

False, while Christians can interpret the Bible metaphorically, they cannot simply disregard some parts. Not taken as literal =/= disregard. The moral message is rather straightforward. Also "death" is sometimes construed as not receiving eternal life, and being condemned to hell.

"Personally, I am not a Christian; this is not my problem to solve. I don't care how Christians attempt to reconcile their beliefs with modernity, but they must do this in order to be civilized. Thus, it would be a good idea if Christians disregarded the hateful passages of scripture and placed a heavy emphasis on the good parts."

That would, from my perspective, make Christianity even more erroneous and insubstantial. We cannot simply negate the morality it teaches, simply because it is incompatible with our moral beliefs. If you do not follow the Bible as it is, you are no Christian at all. One can subjectively interpret the Bible, but one cannot subjectively disregard bits of the Bible.

::Conclusion::
"People that believe arbitrary forms of discrimination are justifiable are simply ignorant about many aspects of psychological health and human wellbeing."

So Christians should arbitrarily disregard bits of the bible that conflict with your morals. But people should not have arbitrary forms of discriminations?

"As I have stated earlier, the world would be a better place if the Pope decided to bless a gay marriage."

If the Pope blessed a gay marriage, the world would be a better place for open-minded theists, atheists, and homosexuals. For fundamentalists and your typical theist? I think they would disagree.

To deduce my position:
I agree that the world will be a better place if the Pope blessed a gay marriage. However, "better place" is a matter of opinion, and stresses on your beliefs. Mr. Freeman and I both agree that the Bible teaches homosexuality as immoral. The typical Christian and the Pope will agree that homosexuality is immoral. Immoral acts should be condemned to make a world a better place. Christians and the Pope should be objective to what the Bible teaches, as that is their duty (beliefs). Therefore, the Pope should not support/bless a gay marriage, as that is in direct conflict for what he stands for.

I thank Mr. Freeman, for this debate.
Debate Round No. 2
40 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by dmarais 6 years ago
dmarais
it is not unwarranted, but i will change it back. you should not be winning this argument.

"I argued that this suggestion has many tangible benefits that are desirable, despite what the Bible says."

what you are saying is the pope should not be the pope anymore.
Posted by Freeman 6 years ago
Freeman
@ dmarais

Your 7 point votebomb is unwarranted.

I know that homosexuality is condemned in the Bible. I argued that this suggestion has many tangible benefits that are desirable, despite what the Bible says.
Posted by dmarais 6 years ago
dmarais
I don't understand how pro has any points what so ever. the title of the argument doesn't even hold water at all if you had even a basic understanding of Catholicism or Christianity
Posted by Freeman 6 years ago
Freeman
I don't understand, Valtarov. How is it that you were not persuaded by my argument? And how is it that you thought Con won this.
Posted by dmarais 6 years ago
dmarais
@geolaureat

well said whatledge... paul revealed to us through christ we are no longer bound to the law but set free through christ who took the penalty of sin (failure to follow the law / rebellion) upon himself. He also reveals to us that the law wasn't put in place to make us into rule followers, but to show us that we couldn't humanly follow it, in other words the law reveals to man how he falls short of the standard of perfection thus he needs a savior (christ)

therefore - we don't stone sabath breakers and gays

as jesus said
"He who is without sin, throw the first stone."

just to be clear i am protestant.
Posted by whatledge 6 years ago
whatledge
@Geo

It would depend on how you interpret it. Even if you don't interpret the Bible literally, you still understand the morality it teaches. For instance in proverbs it is said that he who smites his father shall be put to death. Back in the old days, perhaps, stoning a child was less frowned upon and acceptable. But we now live in a more enlightened and forgiving society. So my answer is simple, should Christians still put to death a child who smites his father? No. Should Christians still look at it as immoral? Yes.
Posted by GeoLaureate8 6 years ago
GeoLaureate8
whatledge, you keep claiming that Christians including the Pope are supposed to comply with Christian morality, and thus should not go against the doctrine against homosexuality.

How come the Pope doesn't stone gays and non-believers, stone Sabbath breakers and other heretics?

And no, they're not metaphors. Deuteronomy says to stone your child if he acts rebellious. Is this a metaphor about love and kindness? Doubtful.
Posted by twsurber 6 years ago
twsurber
On DDO, everything is socially acceptable.
Posted by Zetsubou 6 years ago
Zetsubou
Lol, Politics isn't ready for free religion.

Just use the honorable facade of Catholicism.
Posted by Zetsubou 6 years ago
Zetsubou
Almost all the Senators are catholic.

Of that you have the Democrat Liberals, Harry Reid, Pelosi and such. All Pro Abortion, Pro Gay Marriage, the lot.

"Christians" Just the Hitler.
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