Strong words from the vicar of Rome, and strongly puzzling, too. Gays have always had a place in the Church, especially in its Irish-American branch, in which tradition I was raised. If one of your little Seans or Patricks showed a propensity to play with his sister's dolls or clomp about in high heels, off he went to the seminary, where he could serve the Church, wear dresses and beads as his daily uniform and enjoy the company of other young Catholic boys with similar tastes. It was a win-win-win.
Of course, some of them retained their taste for young Catholic boys when they became old Catholic boys, which resulted in some trouble for the Church and caused this otherwise successful program to be de-emphasized.
The Pope also recently blasted "intolerant agnosticism," whatever that is. All the agnostics I know are fairly tolerant. We've never burned a Pope at the stake, for example, in spite of the Church incinerating any number of us back in the day.
I don't know why the Pope would open his big can of infallibility over gay marriage at all. According to the Church, if you're not married by a priest in the Church, you're not married anyway, and His Holiness is not about to start presiding over gay weddings. Yep, if you've been married by a rabbi, a minister, an imam, a justice of the peace, a ship captain or just a friend that has a fake divinity degree, you're just fornicating away and doomed to hell, according to the Catholic tradition. If you're not Catholic, you're probably doomed to Hell, anyway. The Catholics pioneered this concept of eternal intolerance, which has been embraced by many other religions worldwide ever since.
But I don't see where gays are a threat to world peace. They only gather in vast numbers for gay pride parades, in which the participants can be a bit rowdy and colorfully if somewhat lightly clothed, but are obviously unarmed. When gays start parading with tanks and missiles like North Korea or enriching uranium instead of sushi bars, then we can start worrying.
But when it comes to justice, Benedict has a point. The unfair thing about gay marriage is that in gay marriages, you have can have nice things. Hetero marriage more often results in children. Children are not nice things. They keep you from having nice things. They start off in diapers. That's not nice. When you try and get them to wear clothes, they use the clothes to wipe up stuff they've excreted or spilled, then wad them under furniture or put them on the dog. Not nice. Eventually, you will spend a lot of money for a car your child will wreck and a college he or she will get D's in, or pregnant in, or both.
In the meantime, gay couples are assembling art or antique collections and sending each other postcards from exotic locales in which they are taking separate vacations because they are getting on each other's nerves, not spending seventy-five bucks an hour on marriage counseling like you have to because you can't find someone to sit the kids while you go off to Machu Picchu. They are driving new cars and making smart real estate investments, not changing their own oil and putting in a swimming pool because their kids are begging them for one, a pool which the kids will never clean and eventually will invite one of their friends over to injure himself in and have a lawsuit over.
When gay couples get tired of each other, they will each find some boy-toy and send each other pictures of him. When the glow is gone for you and your wife, she will suddenly find herself unable to live without drinking a lot of wine and following a dozen reality TV shows. You will get busted and probably divorced when she discovers AshleyMadison.com in your browser history.
So gay marriage is unfair. The Church, however, has presided over a lot of things that were unfair, including the Dark Ages, the Spanish Inquisition, the trial of Galileo and the grade school playground I got smacked around in. Sponsoring a few gay weddings wouldn't be that bad. The Pope is probably just worried that if he promoted gay marriage, gays wouldn't want to get married anywhere else. A Church wedding, with its robes, incense and freshly-scrubbed altar boys, just screams "GAY!" and gay couples might abandon city halls and Vegas wedding chapels for the nave at Our Lady of Wherever Some Peasant Children Spotted Her Last in such numbers that the parish could barely squeeze in a bake sale.
And that just wouldn't be fair.