HUELSKAMP: The war on marriage and motherhood

As Published in the Washington Times

Redefining matrimony would destroy the family

President Obama and I have very different notions of what a family is. For liberals, the family can apparently be everything from “Heather Has Two Mommies” to “Daddy’s Roommate” to Hillary Rodham Clinton’sTim-Huelskamp 2“It Takes a Village.” In the opinion of electoral majorities in Kansas and 40 other states, however, that does not a family make.

For conservatives, the concept of family is the same as the Judeo-Christian model God ordained, a model supported by every other major world religion. It is the same unit recognized by the laws of nature, the laws of government, and civilized societies for thousands of years: one man, married to one woman, with so many children as God should see fit to entrust to their care through birth or adoption. In my case, that means me, Angela (my wife of 18 years), and our four children (who happen to be adopted).

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments last week in two landmark cases concerning homosexual marriage. The Hollingsworth v. Perry case challenges the federal constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot initiative approved by 7 million voters to amend California’s state constitution to define marriage as an institution that involves only one man and one woman. The Windsor v. United States case challenges the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the 1996 federal statute overwhelmingly passed by Congress and signed into law by President Clinton in 1996 that recognizes traditional marriage for federal purposes and protects states from having homosexual marriage imposed upon them by other states.If at least five Supreme Court justices do not resist the temptation to legislate from the bench, they might overturn Proposition 8 and DOMA. If that happens, the high priests and priestesses of political correctness will have done irreparable harm to yet another pillar of the American paradigm for our patriotic, wholesome culture — “God, the flag, mom and apple pie.” Activist judges have already expelled faith from the public square (forbidding the Ten Commandments, a cross in remembrance of our military heroes, and Christmas Nativity scenes) and decriminalized burning the Stars and Stripes in public. The First Lady’s “Let’s Move!” initiative and New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s  sugary-drink ban suggest the days of consuming apple pie might well be numbered.

That leaves motherhood. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the introduction of the Congressional Resolution that established Mother’s Day.  Every president since Woodrow Wilson has issued proclamations that pay homage to the significance of motherhood. In 1981, Ronald Reagan wrote: “They shape the character of our people through the love and nurture of their children. It is the strength they give their families that keeps our nation strong.” In 2011, President Obama wrote: “[W]e celebrate the extraordinary importance of mothers in our lives. The bond of love and dedication a mother shares with her children and family is without bounds or conditions.”

In the Hollingsworth case, though, The Justice Department argues that children do not need mothers. The Obama administration makes the incredible assertion that motherhood is superfluous to rebut an argument that the traditional two-parent family, led by both a mother and a father, provides the ideal situation to raise a child. In defiance of biology, nature and common sense, the administration argues that children need neither a father nor a mother and that having two fathers or two mothers or more is just as good as having one of each.

Mr. Obama’s hypocrisy is not limited to motherhood. Four years before he flip-flopped on the issue of homosexual marriage, it was none other than Mr. Obama who proclaimed the singular importance of a father in child-rearing. In his June 2008 speech to a church, then-Sen. Obama said: “We know the statistics — that children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime, nine times more likely to drop out of schools, and 20 times more likely to end up in prison. They are more likely to have behavioral problems, or run away from home, or become teenage parents themselves. And the foundations of our community are weaker because of it.”

Sen. Obama was right; President Obama is wrong. There is overwhelming social science evidence to corroborate the benefits of raising children in homes with both a mom and a dad. Who among us does not know there are differing parenting styles between men and women and that children deserve both? Government, both federal and state, has a legitimate and defensible interest in ensuring that children conceived by a mother and father are, in fact, raised by their biological mothers and fathers whenever possible.

Redefining marriage to remove parents of both sexes from the equation would further the destruction of the family, the most fundamental building block of society. If that definition is changed by the court the purpose of marriage devolves to mere recognition of an emotional union. In so doing, the children of America will be shortchanged — and the will of the American people would be once again short-circuited by black robes in Washington.

Rep. Tim Huelskamp is a Kansas Republican. As a state senator, he authored the Kansas Marriage Amendment approved by 70 percent of voters in 2005.

  • Wow

    To much talk of religion in your statement. I don’t care what religion you practice or how it defines marriage. Religion HAS NO PLACE in our laws/policies. Keep your personal beliefs to yourself and follow the constitution.

    Can’t stand these old, grumpy, closed mind conservatives. This state is going down hill fast. Look for your rights to be trampled on soon.

    • Chris

      Great reply. Funny that his ‘religion’ also delegates women to the role of second class citizens to be controlled by the patriarch.

  • dan

    54% of ALL Americans now support same sex marriage, that includes a lot of conservatives. The SCOTUS doesn’t legislate from the bench, it’s called following the Constitution. You ought to try it sometime. Instead, you try to legislate from your ancient book of fables. If you think it’s constitutional to legislate your religious dogma onto society, then you must be OK with Muslims legislating their beliefs onto you and the rest of America. Right, Tim?

    • Hypocrit

      At least 54% of all Americans are morally corrupt. If we can’t depend on morality, can we rely on common sense and biology?

      • really wow

        Haha.. rely on biology? Well I guess we should permit men and women to be promiscuous in their mariages then? Monogamy is not biological as your past education (more than likey Kansas education) apparently left out.

        Well done Kansas Dept. of Education! You’ve convinsed another moron of your ideaology, and left out scientific facts. Ever hear of propagation of the species?

        Educate yourself fool.. it’s the only thing you can truely do for yourself.

        • Hypocrit

          Has your opinion clouded your judgment so much as for you to ignore the fact that it takes a man and a woman to procreate? Pull your head out of your ass.

          • Wow again

            You really need to take the time to evaluate what Mr. Huelskamp is saying. Most marriages end in divorce these days. Maybe we should completely abandon the idea of marriage? He can preach all he wants about the welfare of kids with a married mommy and daddy. Fact is most marriages end in divorce and there is very little research on kids with same sex parents, and what research there is tends to point in a positive direction. Marriage isn’t about procreation. It’s a symbolic contract-and legal one-for heterosexual men and women, who promise to love each other and support each other. Why not allow that for all people? It’s very obvious your a homophobe. I’m sure when you married your wife/husband you were only thinking that this is for procreation? I feel sorry for your spouse if that was the case. I married out of love, not the idea of procreating. Should infertal men and women be barred from marriage as well?
            You really are on the wrong side of history and freedom, Sir. My best wishes to you. I really hope you can open your heart to others not like you someday, but I doubt your book of fiction allows for that. I also hope that my lesbian sister will someday have the right to marry her lover. Both are outstanding people who deserve equal rights.

          • Hypocrit

            If what homosexuals are looking for is to promise to love each other and support one another, then by all means, get married. If your lesbian sister feels so strongly for her partner, then they already have the freedom and right to acknowledge that love and commitment. The entire country shouldn’t have to, however. And you are correct about marriages ending in divorce. Imagine a court system populated with failed gay marriages and custody disputes when only one party is a biological parent to a child/children. Imagine separating property and spousal maintenance and defining cohabitation for termination of maintenance purposes when a person cannot absolutely designate him/herself as a partner or roommate. Look to the future. Gays and lesbians should do themselves a favor and keep the government OUT of their marriages.

      • dan

        We can depend on the Constitution to keep our government religion free. Islam has even stricter “morals” than Christianity, so it sounds like you’d be OK if they imposed their beliefs. Or is Christianity the only religion that should have to obey?

  • Hypocrit

    I feel myself becoming more and more Republican everyday–even if only out of spite for the liberal argument form.

    • Chris

      Judging by your form of argument in your previous posts, you resort to your limited educational background and cursing to attempt to get your talking points across.

      • Hypocrit

        How bold of you to assume you know anything about my education. However, I would like to rescind that last sentence. You are right. It was out of line.

  • inkslinger

    cant we all just get along