In a letter to the editor at the Salt Lake Tribune the question is asked:
According to “Vatican digs in after gay marriage advances” (Tribune, Nov. 11), the Catholic Church opposes same-sex marriages because “Catholic teaching holds that homosexuals should be respected and treated with dignity but that homosexual acts are ‘intrinsically disordered.’” If you truly believe the former, how can you believe the latter?
We love the sinner, hate the sin. That’s how. All human beings have dignity, but sin destroys souls, and that is why we hate sin. We hate sin because we love people.
The counter-argument to “love the sinner, hate the sin” is that anything that our emotions may drive us to do should be considered to be “promotion of human dignity.” As someone who suffers with Bipolar Disorder, I can assure you that is not healthy logic. It’s the way to suicide. Incidentally, the idea that whatever our emotions tell us to do is “okay” is the idea that drives the assisted suicide movement. When we love people, then we try to talk them out of suicide when they are depressed and want to kill themselves. If we do not try to talk them out of it, we don’t love them. If we adopt the idea that we should support them in that delusion, we are denying their dignity and embracing death. In like manner, if we say “yes” to people finding their identity in sin, we are saying “yes” to their destruction. We can’t do that.
The Catholic idea of dignity, that we all have worth above other created beings by virtue of the Creation and the Incarnation, is the idea that prevailed over the barbaric notion “If it feels good, do it.” Others, like the Marxists,claim to have the antidote for “barbarism.” We beg to differ. We Catholics believe that the Western Civilization we built is better than what the Barbarians delivered, better than what the Islamists delivered, better than what the Marxists delivered, better than what the Fascists delivered, etc.
If you disagree with us, fine, but don’t tell us we don’t know what dignity is. We’ve been standing for it as an institution for two millennia, and we will still be standing for it when Jesus comes again to judge the world.