(CNSNews.com) – Josh Duggar, eldest son of the Duggar family in the popular reality-TV show19 Kids and Counting, told CNSNews.com that he believes “marriage is central to the family and every single child deserves a mother and father” in an interview at the March for Marriage on Saturday in Washington, D.C.
Duggar also said he believed that in America today there is “an agenda to silence people of faith, those who hold a dissenting opinion” on the marriage issue.
“A lot of people say this issue is decided, why is it so important for you to keep fighting for the definition of marriage between a man and a woman?” CNSNews.com asked Duggar, who is also the executive director of FRC Action, the legislative action arm of the Family Research Council.
“I think that in 1973 the court had another decision that they said we're going to decide this once and for all, and Roe vs. Wade, when that was handed down it only began the debate that still continues today and obviously we know where that issue stands now,” Duggar said.
“All of Americans understand that the issue is not going away,” he continued, “so I think what we have to realize is this is only the beginning of a larger discussion, and what's really at stake here is the American family.”
“I believe strongly, being the oldest of 19 kids and counting that you know marriage is central to the family and every single child deserves a mother and father,” said Duggar. “And I'm sure grateful for my parents and I'm grateful for my wife and we have our fourth child on the way due in July, and I think it's just such a blessing when you see family and you see that you can honor each other.”
Duggar raised the pending oral arguments before the Supreme Court on this issue, scheduled for Tuesday, Apr. 28, saying, “This is fundamental because only one other country in the entire world has ever redefined marriage and that was Brazil when they stepped in through the court system to do that.”
“So I think it's, you know, really, it's really a question to me of whether the court should impose this or whether we should look at saying, hey, why not honor the will of the people?” said Duggar.
“They've spoken on this very loud and clear all the way from California to almost every other state” Duggar continued. “When you look at where this has come up people have a very clear and a very distinct opinion on where this issue lies in their hearts. So I think we have to be very clear when we look forward in saying as the court considers this what the implications are going to be.”
“Let's stand together and let's stand up for states to say, look, you have had, you voted on this issue, you've spoken, you've had your voice out there, let's allow that to continue,” he said.
CNSNews.com asked Duggar what he would say to those who describe the belief that marriage should be between a man and a woman hate speech.
“Well, I think that right now in America there is an agenda to silence people of faith, those who hold a dissenting opinion,” said Duggar. “That's not what America was founded on. America was founded on respect, tolerance, and really not discriminating against people based on their religious convictions.”
“Orthodox Christianity in general and all faiths really ascribe to the fact that the family is central to everything,” he said. “And, really, when you look at our economy right now and you look at all the other issues -- national security, immigration, all these issues that we face in our country -- it all goes back to when you have strong families, you have a strong economy, you have a strong nation.”
“I think we have to realize that at the very bedrock of this issue behind marriage is the American family and we have to go and we have to stand and fight for that,” he said.
Concerning the Supreme Court and the future, CNSNews.com also asked, “What are the next 50 years going to look like, if they decide in favor of same-sex marriage, for you, for this cause?”
“I think that it's very clear that this is a debate that's not going to go away and I think what we have to do is we have to come to this and we have to talk with civility,” said Duggar.
“We have to go out there and we have to be clear in what we believe and we have to be firm in saying, look, this is where I stand and I admire the political leaders right now who are taking a bold stand on both sides of the issue quite honestly and I think this is a topic that we need to be discussing, that we need to be having that discourse about,” he said.
The March for Marriage is an annual rally organized by the National Organization for Marriage, which supports traditional marriage between one man and one woman.
Along with Josh Duggar, speakers at the rally included Brian Brown, president of National Organization for Marriage; State Senator Ruben Diaz (D-N.Y.); Rev. Bill Owens, founder and president of the Coalition of African American Pastors; Cathy Ruse, senior fellow of Legal Studies at the Family Research Council; and Mat Staver, founder and chairman of the Liberty Counsel.