During the Eagle Forum Collegians 2011 Summit with Phyllis Schlafly, Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) delivered a speech on why young conservatives should oppose marriage equality, claiming that legalizing gay marriage is akin to legalizing pedophilia, incest, and letting three-year olds drive a car. We attended the conference and posted the video:
Hartzler: Some people say, why does it matter to you as a government official? I care about someone else, I’m committed, I should be able to marry. Well, think about it. That starts you down the road to opening up licensure to basically meaning that the license would mean nothing if you let everybody with that standard. For instance, if you just care about somebody and you have a committed relationship, why not allow one man and two women, or three women to marry? There are a lot of people in this country that support polygamy. Why not? If they’re committed to each other, why should you care?
Why not allow group marriage? There are people out there who want that. I think it’s called polyamory, it’s got some big name. But anyway, group marriage, I understand. Well, is that the best policy? Why not allow an uncle to marry his niece? Why not allow a 50-year-old man to marry a 12-year-old girl if they love each other and they’re committed? So, pretty soon, if you don’t set parameters, you don’t have any parameters at all, the license means nothing — the marriage means nothing.
It’s their right to marry whoever they want, but we’re saying marriage is between a man and a woman. So, there’s a difference there. But it’s not a right in the Constitution as far as that goes either. It’s not a right of anybody — of a 3-year-old to be able to drive a car. You know, the government has set some parameters that they think is correct.
After the video was posted, Hartzler reiterated her argument while also suggesting that her comments were “misconstrued.” The Congresswoman told PoliticsMO.com that she stands by her ‘slippery slope’ analogy, adding that she only meant to say that gay people getting married is like thirteen year olds driving cars:
Speaking to PoliticMo Monday, Hartzler clarified, saying she said – or meant to say – 13 year old, not three year old.
“I was saying that if you change the standard in the country to having marriage be, which is what they want, that just anybody that has a loving and committed relationship, then you set yourself on a slippery slope legally in courts to having other people come forward with similar arguments that would be objectionable to almost everyone,” she said. “So, that’s another reason why it makes sense to just keep the traditional definition of a man and a woman and that it’s my main point there is that it’s wide public policy.
“So, obviously those comments are just being misconstrued by those,” she said.