“Religious leaders [claim] that marriage is: ‘… a union of husband and wife for the primary task of begetting and nurturing children’. How absurd.
“What about childless heterosexual couples? Are such couples cursed by God? Should their marriages be annulled because they are childless?
“What role does love, companionship, fidelity, mutual interests, respect, and sexual pleasure play in a successful marriage?”
The following Letter to the Editor on same sex marriage was submitted to Wired868 by Louis Winston Williams from St Augustine:
Some religious leaders at a recent meeting in Trinidad, under the auspices of Rebuild TT, indicated that they were against ‘gay’ marriages. In this connection, I have noted that even some in the local LBGTQI community are reluctant to go this far and, therefore, favour what is, in effect, an amelioration plan—that is they focus exclusively, at this time, on securing equal rights under the Equal Opportunity Act.
This is so reminiscent of the approach taken with regard to the abolition of slavery! Gregory Lal Beharie, president of RebuildTT, is reported—in the Sunday 17 June 2018 edition of the Trinidad Newsday—to have said there is no evidence anyone is born gay, but, instead, evidence that people can be socialised gay.
Bear in mind that there was no scientific evidence showing a causal link between tobacco smoke and some forms of lung cancer, until recently. Human beings do not possess perfect knowledge.
Obviously, these religious leaders are not God. There is so much about the universe that no human being fully understands. In this regard, among other things, there are some human beings who were born with sexual organs of both sexes (hermaphrodites)—God made them that way! There are adult males with underdeveloped genitals (eunuchs)—God made them that way!
There are males with an excessive amount of ‘female’ hormones raging through their bodies, and vice versa for females—God made them that way!
Human beings are complex creatures. We are much more than our physical appearance. We are social, emotional, psychological, spiritual, and God alone knows what else.
The religious leaders received support from Tricia Leacock. In her letter to the editor that was published in the Trinidad Express on Sunday 17 June, she stated that marriage is: “… a union of husband and wife for the primary task of begetting and nurturing children.” How absurd.
What about childless heterosexual couples? Are such couples cursed by God? Should their marriages be annulled because they are childless?
What role does love, companionship, fidelity, mutual interests, respect, and sexual pleasure play in a successful marriage? Incidentally, atheist who are heterosexual are allowed to marry under the existing law.
Moreover, I would be deeply offended and saddened if, for example, one of my female relatives were to marry a gentleman whom she thought was heterosexual but, in fact, was not so. What if he was using a heterosexual marriage to please his religious leader and/or to avoid discrimination or social exclusion?
What if this man were a judge, and he was subjected to blackmail as he continued his homosexual activity in secret? What effect would all of this have on the children in that relationship?
Have we not paid attention to the media reports from around the world of so-called ‘closet LBGTQI’ individuals being blackmailed?
I am aware that some Christian denominations do not marry divorcees unless their former spouses are deceased, and I support their right to do so. Other Christian denominations do marry divorcees or such a couple can opt for a civil union—that is a marriage not under any religious rights.
I do not agree that religious leaders ought to be compelled to marry couples. But I do not agree that marriage should be only between someone who was born biologically a man and someone who was born biologically a woman.
There are certain rights afforded to married heterosexual couples, such as rights to a deceased partner’s property after death, with or without a will, or upon a divorce. There should be no discrimination in this regard. It ought to be open to the LBGTQI community to establish their own religion or denominations of existing religions.
For example, there are Christian denominations that forbid the eating of pork and there are others that allow it. Do we recall, the Spiritual Baptist Shouter Prohibition Ordinance and, also, when the Orisha religion was not recognised under colonialism?
Human rights are inalienable. Would slavery, segregation, and apartheid have been abolished if we left it to those who had the right to vote in a referendum?
It took enlightened leadership and great courage by those in the legislature who recognised that protection of the most vulnerable groups in society is one of the prime responsibilities of legislators, despite popular sentiment—knowing that history will absolve them, as happened with the abolition of slavery, segregation, and apartheid.