The recent much photographed wedding of Ellen DeGeneres – surely a campy stage name – and her [female] partner has been a tremendous breakthrough. Who has not thrilled to that white-clad couple smiling radiantly at America, including us all in this historic cultural breakthrough? There are hang-ups to be overcome of course. I heard a rustic from Iowa ask, “But what do they do?” I suggested that he keep a sharper eye on his herd of cows and he might learn a thing or two, but silly as the question seems, it deserves a serious answer, and it is this. Ellen and her beloved provide venereal pleasure to one another by any means they choose. What else is marriage?
That this glorious event took place within the octave of the fortieth anniversary of the benighted encyclical Humanae Vitae, a document that even Catholics have long since dismissed, is significant. Reading this incredible effort to call into question the legitimacy of contraception (!) is not without its rewards. Paul VI spoke of two meanings of the “marital act,” one unitive, the other procreative, and declared that there is something wrong about separating them.
Where to begin to explode such nonsense? No doubt there is a specious plausibility to the suggestion that the reproductive organs have something to do with reproduction, but again this is merely a matter of terminology and easily corrected. Sexual organs are the source of sexual pleasure. Is that too difficult to grasp? The “gender” of the partners introduces no important difference. The fact that there is no essential need for a partner makes this even clearer. One can give oneself one’s hand in marriage, nicht wahr? –from “Animal Husbandry” (The Catholic Thing, 9/3/08)