Graham's straightjacket
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

With gay marriage rights on the ballot in four states, Rev. Billy Graham recently took out a full page ad in The Wall Street Journal that said: "vote for those who protect the biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman. Vote for biblical values this November 6, and pray with me that America will remain one nation under God."

Of course, there's not just one "biblical definition of marriage." There's polygamy; there's arranged marriages; there's wife-as-property marriage; there's marry-your-brother's-widow-to-produce-children marriage; there's no inter-racial marriage; there's no-divorce marriage; and there's celibacy is better than marriage.

The marriage Graham advocates is more Victorian than biblical. As for America remaining "one nation under God" — whose god? We have so many.

The Pledge of Allegiance's "under God" comes from Lincoln's "Gettysburg Address," about America's "new birth of freedom" that is of, by and for the people.

"One nation" echoes the Founder Fathers' motto, E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one), how 13 states became one nation. Today, it celebrates America's diversity: how many different pursuits and beliefs of happiness of and by the people aggregate into one glorious nation.

Graham's view straightjackets America into only one way and calls it American. That's just un-American.

Scott Carter

Salt Lake City