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NOM-Promoted Column: Marriage Equality Leads To Child Abuse, Polygamy

February 28, 2012 1:37 pm ET by Carlos Maza

In a February 27 blog post, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) promoted a column written by Human Life International’s Melanie Baker headlined: “What’s at Stake in the ‘Same-Sex Marriage’ Debate?” In her column, Baker decried what she characterized as an overreliance on “pathos-laden language” being used in the debate over marriage equality in Maryland, and called for “rational discourse” about the benefits and consequences of same-sex marriage.

One paragraph earlier, of course, she claimed that legalizing same-sex marriage would lead to polygamy, marriages between adults and children, and child abuse:

If Maryland’s Civil Marriage Protection Act becomes law, Pandora’s box will be opened. Once the law redefines marriage as the sexual union of any two consenting adults, further modifications will no longer appear alarming: two consenting adults might become two consenting persons (age therefore being eliminated and opening the door to disguised child abuse), or “two” might be deemed an arbitrary number (already there are lawsuits making their way through the courts), thus opening the door for polygamy and polyamory. When the law can be changed so flippantly, it does not inspire confidence in its ability to “protect.” What sort of “freedom” and “protection” will your children, and their children, enjoy in fifty or sixty years at this rate? [emphasis added]

Arguing that marriage equality would somehow normalize pedophilia and child sexual abuse has become a common NOM talking point.

The rhetoric fits with the pattern of discourse used by opponents of marriage equality.  In January, witnesses in front of Maryland’s Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee advanced a number of misleading anti-gay talking points, even citing comments made by a Sex and the City star to claim that homosexuality is a choice.

NOM hasn’t exactly been a beacon of rational thought in Maryland’s marriage equality debate, either. Last year, the group sent out a series of mailers – complete with an image of a crying toy doll – warning residents that children would be forced to learn about same-sex marriage in school. NOM’s co-founder, Maggie Gallagher, was also criticized for playing the “race card” during the debate, asserting that “white urban liberals” were trying to impose same-sex marriage on non-white communities and accusing gay activists of lobbying Del. Sam Arora (D) because Indian-Americans are “an easier target.”


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