The French are so avant garde when it comes to semiotics, that they are preparing to replace the words "mother" and "father" in all official documents with the gender-neutral amalgamation "parents." The move anticipates France's looming legalization of same-sex marriage, which in turn has Catholic authorities in full-tilt, social cataclysm mode, with French Catholic Church Cardinal Philippe Barbarin falling down the slippery slope by warning followers that same-sex marriage would lead to polygamy, incest, and who knows what other horrifying social taboos.
According to the Telegraph, the draft law states that "marriage is a union of two people, of different or the same gender," hence "parents" instead of arbitrary, gender signifiers (Ferdinand de Saussure would be most intrigued by this real-time exploration of parental naming). The law would grant equal adoption rights to heterosexual and homosexual couples, because, as Justice Minister Christiane Taubira pointed out to the Catholic newspaper La Croix, "Who is to say that a heterosexual couple will bring a child up better than a homosexual couple, that they will guarantee the best conditions for the child's development?"
That, however, is pretty much exactly what the Church is saying. Pope Palpatine invited 30 French bishops to come over to Italy for pizza so he could discuss with them in hushed, hissing tones how best to fight the French marriage equality law, and Cardinal Barbarin has been doing his level best to make Catholics believe that the seventh seal will open if France allows same-sex marriage. "Gay marriage," he said on a Christian radio station, "would herald a complete breakdown in society." He added,
This could have innumerable consequences. Afterward they will want to create couples with three or four members. And after that, perhaps one day the taboo of incest will fall.
Incest, eh? It sounds like Cardinal Barbarin hasn't been keeping up with The Borgias, otherwise he'd know that the Catholic Pontiff has a long and storied tradition of incest.
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