Former governor Mike Huckabee’s visit to the College has garnered much attention, particularly his comments regarding LGBT marriage and adoptive rights. If you read The Perspective’s coverage of the event and media interview, you know that he said some pretty incriminating things. While placing statements such as “Children aren’t puppies” and “You don’t go ahead and accommodate every behavioral pattern that is against the ideal” in context, don’t excuse their implications, major parts of his argument in defending his views were omitted.
Regarding adoptive rights, Huckabee emphasized that he believed the major issue to address is the reason why these children are even up for adoption. He said couples need to be more responsible for their actions.
“In a perfect world, in an ideal world, people would realize that having a child is a heavy duty responsibility … You don’t use that person as a sexual toy and toss them away,” he said in The Perspective’s audio recording. “leaving them with the burdens of a child. That to me is what is so recklessly irresponsible and ridiculously immature.”
When asked if he “would classify among those who are immature and selfish, the gays and lesbians who want to adopt a child?”, though his argument was strictly referring to sexual relations that lead to a child that is subsequently put up for adoption, he replied, “No, you said that, I did not.”
Additionally, in respect to his statement, “You don’t go ahead and accommodate every behavioral pattern that isn’t ideal,” the rationale for his viewpoint is delivered in an incomplete version. He compares legalization of same-sex marriage to the legalization of polygamy or incest, not as a way of rendering the first a ridiculous notion, but in order to highlight what he believes is the “burden of proof” by LGBT activists to change societal standards.
“If we are going to accommodate a different definition of that (marriage) then why do you get to choose that two men are ok but one man and three women aren’t ok. Why? Who gives you the right to say the polygamist isn’t just as right in this argument,” he said.
To a degree, Huckabee has a point. Who is to decide what is right or wrong in society, and why can someone accept one lifestyle, but condemn another? It is unfortunate that he doesn’t seem to see this same hypocrisy in the context of society accepting heterosexual marriage and not homosexual marriage. However, Huckabee did make it clear in the interview that he believed it wasn’t his job to decide whether gay marriage merited the same rights as heterosexual marriage.
“But as far as me telling someone else how they have to live, that’s not my goal,” he said. “Now on the other hand, if they want to try to change the definitions of institutions like marriage, then they’ve got to convince me and the rest of the culture that we should change 5,000 years of recorded history of what marriage means.”
I do not agree with much of what Huckabee said. However, I think some essential elements of his argument were lost in the outrage over snippets extracted from the conversation, which are particularly offensive without his other statements.