Thursday, June 5, 2008

R.R. Reno on Traditional Marriage

Citing Doug Farrow's latest book, here is R.R. Reno's brief yet articulate defense of traditional marriage. However, I see problems with the reference to the blanket castigation the left's embrace of the state. Thinking only, for the moment, of important social teachings of various religious traditions, the Catholic Church included, it appears that the defense of traditional marriage is going to need further nuancing when it comes to the distinction between legitimate and illegitimate claims of the state in order for this defense to be credible. This would be my twist on it - again, a kind of left conservatism. Embracing traditional marriage while at the same time seeing plenty of room for the state as a central actor to promote or restore justice and equity as in the social democratic political tradition. This tradition is an excellent example of a politics of true toleration - a central role for the state practiced by various European governments for decades which did not - in the main - interfere in family life.

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