The Engage Family Blog

Official Blog of The Family Policy Council of West Virginia

The Death of Tradition

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Excellent thoughts on the challenge that the same-sex “marriage” movement poses to conservative philosophy from Carson Holloway at;

The same-sex marriage movement is surely a great challenge to conservatism. The success of the movement would represent a great repudiation of tradition; in fact, it is almost impossible to distinguish the victory of the same-sex marriage movement from a complete repudiation not only of the traditional definition of marriage, but of the social authority of tradition as such. Consider the following points.

First, the traditional understanding of marriage as a union of a man and a woman is not unique to American civilization. It is rather the understanding of every civilization of which we have knowledge.

. . . 

Second, the departure from tradition urged by the advocates of same-sex marriage is simply gratuitous. There is no necessity compelling it. 

. . . 

Third, the argument for same-sex marriage is advanced without any effort at a sympathetic understanding of traditional notions and what could be said in their defense. 

. . .

In sum, what was thought to be obvious by all people, not just in our society but by all human beings from the dawn of humanity until just a few years ago—that marriage is a union between a man and a woman—is to be rejected out of hand, as irrational and unjust. It would be difficult to conceive a more complete repudiation of tradition’s authority. The society that takes this path is not just refusing to be ruled by the past; it is refusing even to listen to the past.

Well, the proponents of same-sex marriage may ask, what’s wrong with that? Why, after all, should we listen to the past, and even tend to defer to its authority? 


To see his answer, (and see the good stuff I left out) read the rest of the article over at


Written by Jeremy Dys

June 10, 2009 at 4:38 pm

One Response

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  1. Excellent thoughts. I actually first ran into Holloway’s ideas in his book about music and politics, and seem to have much in common with him.


    May 28, 2011 at 2:12 pm

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