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You Call This Equality?

I have long argued [1] that the “right” to government recognized same-sex marriage is illiberal and inegalitarian.  It is by definition a right to compel the government to use some magic word in a particular way.  In essence, it is a right is to say and think, truthfully: Nah, nah, the government calls same sex relationships “marriages,” so there! Conversely, it is right to make others say and think, truthfully: Grr, the government calls those things “marriages”?

No such right can be enjoyed equally with others.  No matter what class of relationships the government calls “marriage,” there will always be some individuals for whom the class is too broad (because, say, it includes same-sex couples) or too narrow (because, say, it excludes plural marriages).  The right to government-recognized marriage is inherently a right to use the soft coercive powers of the government to discriminate against others.

Some people tell me that this analysis is no more than sophistry. Well, it now turns out that no less an authority than Judge Vaughn R. Walker of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California agrees with me.  In his opinion striking down Prop 8, Walker correctly found that same sex couples enjoyed all of the same legal rights, privileges and duties as opposite sex couples, with one exception — namely, the “right” to have the government officially refer to their relationships as “marriages.”  If Prop 8 has no legal effect, why strike it down as unconstitutional?  Because, says Walker:

Domestic partnerships . . . do not provide the same social meaning as marriage.

And:

A domestic partnership is not a marriage; while domestic partnerships offer same-sex couples almost all of the rights and responsibilities associated with marriage, the evidence shows that the withholding of the designation “marriage” significantly disadvantages plaintiffs.  The record reflects that marriage is a culturally superior status compared to a domestic partnership.  California does not meet its due process obligation to allow plaintiffs to marry by offering them a substitute and inferior institution that denies marriage to same-sex couples.

(emphasis added.) In other words, same-sex couples have a right to have the government create “social meanings” that are to their liking and deem their relationships “culturally superior.”  If you don’t like those social meanings or have a different view of cultural superiority, then tough.  Advocates of same sex marriage get to have their moral views vindicated by the State and (implicitly) to have yours ridiculed and vilified.

Judge Walker’s opinion isn’t about freedom. It isn’t about equality.  It’s about using the power of the state to change minds.  How any liberal could welcome this development utterly escapes me.

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#1 Comment By Doug Pascover On August 5, 2010 @ 7:15 am

Nicely torched straw man. The first paragraph reads like a lecture to a ribboned sock puppet. Those who say that analysis is no more than sophistry have paid the author a compliment.

There are a lot of reasons not to like Judge Walker’s opinion. It seems very much to come from the result-seeking legislative branch of the judicial branch. But the notion that it causes some sort of material victimhood to traditionalists strikes me as classic Con, Inc. mulefeathering.

#2 Comment By Matt On August 5, 2010 @ 7:44 am

It’s about using the power of the state to change minds. How any liberal could welcome this development utterly escapes me.

Because…that’s precisely what a good portion of liberals want? I didn’t realize there was any mystery here.

#3 Comment By Austin Bramwell On August 5, 2010 @ 8:25 am

Doug — what’s “mulefeathering”?

#4 Comment By blackton On August 5, 2010 @ 12:15 pm

Ok, if Domestic partnerships offer the exact same legal benefits of marriage, then railing at the terms is a distinction without a difference. If it is not, then it is inequal and so should be remedied. For the life of me, I simply can not see how Republicans get so twisted up about a simple legal contract between two individuals who are already sharing a life together, having sex, even procreating (turkey basters, surrogates, etc.) who want to tidy up their legal affairs in the same manner as a man and woman have the right to.

#5 Comment By Tony J On August 5, 2010 @ 12:52 pm

blackton,

Because bigotry and faux-victimhood are popular with their steadily shrinking base.

#6 Comment By Austin Bramwell On August 5, 2010 @ 1:20 pm

Blackton – Republicans don’t get twisted up about it. I am not aware of any Republicans who oppose enforceable domestic partnership agreements. Indeed, the existence of such agreements is used as a point *against* government recognized same sex marriage (if SS couples can already enter in the equivalent of marriage contracts, there’s no point in conferring an additional measure of official government endorsement). It seems to me that the people getting “twisted up” are those who are appalled that there might be people out there who have the wrong attitudes on sexual morality. Official government endorsement of SSM marriage is designed to re-educate the recalcitrant — as the Perry decision basically admits.

#7 Comment By blackton On August 5, 2010 @ 1:26 pm

Tony J. I can understand the religious objections, and if surrendering the word Marriage to connote only religious ceremonies provided Civil Unions have the exact same rights and responsibilities under the law as Marriages do is OK with me. I myself was married in a Civil ceremony in China, and I find it amusing that my marriage is recognized by everyone as being 100% legitimate even though it was a civil ceremony in a Commie country. So if you want to make that distinction marriage=religious ceremony that doubles as a civil ceremony and civil unions=civil ceremony with civil ceremony = civil ceremony I am fine with that.
Church and state remain separate and everybody can be happy (fat chance)

#8 Comment By blackton On August 5, 2010 @ 3:01 pm

Adam, I dunno, do Governors count?

An opponent of same-sex marriage, Governor Carcieri has vetoed bill that would have added “domestic partners” to the list of people authorized by law to make funeral arrangements for each other.

In his veto message, Republican Carcieri said: “This bill represents a disturbing trend over the past few years of the incremental erosion of the principles surrounding traditional marriage, which is not the preferred way to approach this issue.”

or Nevada’s Governor: On June 1, 2009, the Nevada Assembly voted 28 to 14 to override Governor Jim Gibbons’ veto of the bill establishing a domestic partnership law in Nevada. The vote in the assembly, combined with the State Senate’s 14 to 7 override of Governor Gibbons’ veto, means the bill becomes effective October 1, 2009

Tim Pawlenty did the same, he vetoes a domestic partnership bill.
I could go on and on, but at this point the evidence is pretty clear, there are not to be any equal rights for gays in America from the perspective of the majority of Republicans (and a nice chunk of Democrats too).

#9 Comment By blackton On August 5, 2010 @ 3:04 pm

By the way, a recognition of a private contract does not equal endorsement. If I were to sell my land to a bunch of Ku Klux Klanners for them to have their clan meetings, the government would certainly not “approve” of it, but they would certainly allow it.

#10 Comment By PA15017 On August 5, 2010 @ 3:15 pm

Bramwell —

Thank you for making this argument! Very great post.

You made the point that the legitimacy of civil unions, a “separate but equal” institution legally, is undermined only because society holds the concept of “marraige” in higher regard than the concept of “civil unions”. So in this case separate isn’t equal, but only because of social meaning and the unequal access to it, like you said. This makes it seem like social meaning, and the regard of society for an institution, must be pivotal to this case.

Concurrently, millions of Californians voted to show that they hold straight marraiges in higher regard than committed gay couples (however they should choose to name their institution). In California, the social meaning of “committed gay couple” must be fairly negative, held in lower regard than marriage (consciously or subconsciously, but either way the vote means the same thing). But that vote has been invalidated … which makes it seem like CURRENT social meaning, and the regard of society for a particular institution right now, is not important to the case at all.

So the government must care only about whether or not everyone has access to the highest regard of society; it must not care about whether society has directly, voluntarily expressed its disregard for someone or something. Frankly, that sounds almost correct for a liberal government.

But at the same time it really sucks, because now, we’re either going to hold committed gay couples in the same regard as marriages, or we’re going to have to recuse ourselves from any legal-like involvement in the institution of marriage (creating legislation, drawing up employee benefit rules, offering discounts for married people at our places of business, etc.).

And I think that’s how the government endorsement of SS marriage will re-educate the recalcitrant – through attrition. Our decision not to go along with this new social valuation will, in some small way, make us outcasts.

#11 Comment By A.C. On August 5, 2010 @ 3:25 pm

Blackton-GOPers DON’T get hung up on it, at least the ones who really understand what this is all about don’t. Professor Robert George of Princeton, among other social conservatives, is a good example; he has acknowledged no opposition to civil unions where they’re necessary, so long as they are of a legally neutral non-sexual nature. Such civil union legal contracts could cover homosexual men, lesbians, or any other two (or perhaps more, and you know the “more” is coming down the road, denial of this is dishonesty) individuals who are not a married man and woman. All conservatives are fine with this when (and IF in some exaggerated cases) there really is discrimination going on, say a hospital’s rules requiring only kin visitation which would prohibit a gay couple. Or any million other examples. They would have exactly the same rights as married couples. But guess who’s NOT O.K. with that? The gay rights movement, of course. That’s because this whole quest has NEVER been about gay marriage, gays serving in the military, (which they already do, just not as openly and flamboyantly as they would like, apparently), or gay civil rights of any kind whatsoever. It is about advancing the normalization of homosexuality which is merely a subset of the sexual revolution more generally, which itself is part of moral relativism in the West. Traditional Judeo-Christian morality, in this case, more specifically, a belief in an objective (or at least “objective” as 2-3 thousand years or more of history sees it) sexual morality is what stands in the way of all of this. And, from the gay rights brigade’s standpoint, and any and all of its allies who love the sexual revolution, such traditional opposition (still the statistically undisputed majority of the country, though a smaller majority than it was 30 yrs. ago) must be defeated. Indeed, it must be crushed as they see it, with zero tolerance and with totalitarian force. Read the Daily Mail website, for example, if you don’t believe me; this process is now well underway in England after 13 years of culturally marxist new labour and Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. Which the new “Conservatives”, ha ha, and Cameron agree with. And it’s what the Left wants here. Everyone MUST, by definition, be forced to resign their religious liberty right to believe in an objective sexual morality because that’s just homophobia, prudishness, bigotry of whatever kind, and they must now accept the new world order of sexual relativism.

Now, I’m willing to concede, if not in reality according to natural law, then at least for the sake of the argument, that there is no such “objective” position regarding sex, only thousands of years of human tradition and good sense that is subjective and is defended by most. Silly, but say that’s the case, just for the moment. Try finding anyone on the Left who will open-mindedly do the same and admit to the pure subjectivity of sexual relativism. (Not to mention more than a few libertarians on the right.) No. They, like Mr. Tony J above, would rather insist in demagogic fashion that traditional sexual morality as it has been practiced in Christendom for thousands of years, (and in virtually every other human culture for sometimes longer) is nothing more than bigotry and deserves to be stamped out of society. Yes, a very tolerant bunch such people are. And the apex of these radicals, the kind of people who are tenured academics in “gender studies” departments at America and Europe’s finest universities who actually say and believe things like “gender (or what we used to more honestly call sex) is but a social construct, blah, blah, blah..” are the real leaders of their side of this whole debate. What do they want? It’s obvious; if not biologically and literally, they want a more unisexual society, stripped of any virtues that can be defined as masculine or feminine virtues. Sounds like a fun party, doesn’t it? Rebellion against sex as part of nature seems to me to be kind of the holy grail for the modern leftist progressive. Maybe if that’s conquered they will finally fullfill their wish to be their own authority, above such petty concerns as God or ordered nature.

But to think, as far too many righty libertarians do, that this is all just about civil rights for gays is to be incredibly naive. If you love gay marriage, great, vote for it. But don’t expect all of America, most of which still is Judeo-Christian to sit happily by and do nothing. And anyone who expects people to swallow childish arguments like Vaughn Walker tries, attempting to redefine marriage as not a husband (man) and a wife (woman), but as a contract between two individuals of either sex (romantic-sounding, isn’t it?) because of the equal protection clause of the fourteenth for God’s sake is just a fool. Do they think that’s persuadable to the average God-fearing American, who, unlike leftist judges, knows the Constitution? That’s about as big and radical a friggin’ change as you can get of a definition of a word, and a pretty important word at that, and that needs a vote. And, I feel just like the Left; voting to retain the proper definition of marriage never ends anything, they sue or get it on the ballot again to overturn it and vote the “right” way. Like they do over accepting the EU in Europe. Well, fine. If any state ever votes to redefine marriage for homosexuals, which hasn’t happened yet btw after more than thirty tries, it won’t end there for me. We’ll try to overturn it just as aggressively as they do. We’ll have to just continue this merry go round forever i guess.

And the culture war just gets larger. This is just example 4,562 of how the cultural marxists like Gramsci and Alinsky were always right. This is how western civ. will die, unless resisted, not through guns or economic socialism, but through lack of resistance from its presumed defenders who don’t even understand what the war is about. I can just see in my mind David Brooks’s next stupid column telling everyone how the culture war is over or doesn’t matter anymore. On the contrary, it’s rapidly consuming the whole country.

#12 Comment By A.C. On August 5, 2010 @ 3:53 pm

In the end, I suppose, one man, a rather mediocre legal thinker with no real discernible understanding of what a judge’s job is or should be named Anthony Kennedy will inform all of us what the meaning of matrimony is. Boy, our democratic constitutional republic is in really healthy shape, wouldn’t you say?

#13 Comment By Austin Bramwell On August 5, 2010 @ 4:01 pm

Blackton – I’m pretty sure that courts will enforce domestic partnership agreements in all 50 states, and I don’t know any republican politician who objects. In other words, there is no republican who wants to deny SS couples the right to whack up their property rights and support obligations however they like. The question is not freedom of contract but what types of relationships are entitled to official government approval.

#14 Comment By Red Phillips On August 5, 2010 @ 4:34 pm

“For the life of me, I simply can not see how Republicans get so twisted up about a simple legal contract between two individuals…”

Oh I don’t know … maybe because THE WORD OF GOD CONDEMNS HOMOSEXUALITY!

I thought the liberal brigade only hung out on Larison’s blog. I guess I was wrong.

I don’t agree with Austin entirely here, but he is right about one thing. This gay marriage thing is about getting knuckle-dragging Christians and other traditionalists like me to think “right.” Well good luck with that.

#15 Comment By Brandon On August 5, 2010 @ 4:42 pm

Government must get OUT of marriage altogether. Why should ANYONE have to go to the gov’t to get a marriage license and prenup just so they can get all these special fringe benefits? Plus, it’s discriminatory. If you decide to get married but don’t apply with the state or can’t, you’re SOL on so many levels! Gov’t recognition of marriage is a relatively new phenomenon that just doesn’t work. It’s ridiculous. Government has no business getting involved in such a sacred institution, and it is a travesty that gov’t officials think they can ever legislate morality. Any law based on morality MUST have a larger purpose, usually for defending the public against aggression. The gov’t CANNOT just decide what is and isn’t moral and then make laws criminalizing what THEY think is immoral simply because it is immoral. I’m pretty sure that’s unconstitutional to some degree.

I find it hilarious how neocons who wanna use gov’t to keep their heterosexual marriage monopoly are the SAME folks who bitch and complain about “big government.” Right… trying to restrict people’s social freedom ISN’T bigger gov’t? And they complain about the Left supposedly always looking to gov’t to solve our problems, yet on so many social issues, THEY wanna do the same! Except they confuse the public with gov’t and think that just b/c the public decided it through some bogus referendum or initative that it’s morally superior to a law. Come on…

#16 Comment By Brandon On August 5, 2010 @ 4:46 pm

It is SOCIETY’s job to decide what is and isn’t immoral, NOT the state’s. Gov’t must stay out of highly contentious issues of morality. They only should pass laws criminalizing certain acts when those acts infringe on others’ liberty or harm them. Would the same right-wingers or left-wingers who think it’s their job to use the state to enforce “morality” or “responsibility” think that the movie “Footloose” is a good example of what government SHOULD do? Of course not! Banning singing and dancing is nonsense. So why does the gov’t have any more of a right to ban a type of marriage or sexual act someone doesn’t like?

We must argue for PRIVATIZING marriage. Get the gov’t out. If someone doesn’t wanna marry gays, fine. But those who DO wanna marry gays and have them be legally equal in society (hospital visits and so forth) should have every right.

#17 Comment By tz On August 5, 2010 @ 5:43 pm

What we really need is a Limited Liability Domestic Partnership for those who have sacraments performed in church.

Marriage is an uncivil institution. To remove something sacred from the alter is to profane it, so for the government to say what is a “marriage or not” is out of their area of competence. There are marriage contracts which should be enforced like any other, but that is judicial.

#18 Comment By Chad Rushing On August 5, 2010 @ 6:54 pm

The fact that people in learned forums and positions of societal power are seriously debating whether or not monogamous sodomites should be officially allowed to marry just goes to show you how depraved our society has truly become. The God-fearing Pilgrims and American Puritans must be rolling over in their graves.

Once same-sex marriage inevitably goes through — and it will one way or another, because the ruling class wholeheartedly supports it — how long will it be before people are seriously discussing incestual and polyamorous marriages? I am guessing not very long at all.

#19 Comment By HateHacks On August 5, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

“Separation of church and state”? We have a state church, and the Walker opinion confirms it’s the Church of Sodom. The common “Lot,” so to speak, of the majority of people in this country who want genuine marriage, is now to be forced to pay homage to this abomination..

#20 Comment By blackton On August 5, 2010 @ 8:00 pm

“or perhaps more, and you know the “more” is coming down the road, denial of this is dishonesty” No, there is a public health issue regarding polygamy. Technically I could marry a woman, who can marry a man, who can marry my mother. That is fundamentally wrong on so many levels (as is all incest) and where would we draw the line, only closed polygamous union can be permitted? I can’t see that happening. The point of monogamous marital unions is also to preserve public health so that unprotected sex is possible, for procreation or for just intimacy, if my wife were with another man…no. That doesn’t work for me or most men.

Again, that “morality” ship has already sailed, gays can live together, have sex, have children, etc. Trying to ensure it remains healthy is in our own self interest.

#21 Comment By JoaoAlfaiate On August 5, 2010 @ 10:24 pm

Why not let homosexuals marry? Shouldn’t they be as unhappy as the rest of us?

#22 Comment By ian On August 5, 2010 @ 11:23 pm

I had to marry to have sex why should they get away?

Secondly I would take it that a heterosexual paedophile can get married but a law abiding tax paying gay or lesbian person cannot marry as they’d upset God? ( or defend their country)

I used to think it was a step too far but now I’m embarrassed I ever thought that.

#23 Comment By ian On August 5, 2010 @ 11:24 pm

Wow just read some of the posts..man what haters.

#24 Comment By A.C. On August 5, 2010 @ 11:47 pm

I fail to see any distinction, blackton. Indeed, dealing just with the word, “marriage”, once it has been transformed from a union of husband and wife, who, by literal definition are man and woman, into a union of TWO individuals of either sex, why is there any reason to insist that no more extension can be made, as far as logic and legal reasoning goes, into a civil/legal/sexual contract of more than two people? It’s a SHORTER, not a longer leap to bigamy, polygamy and polyamory from homosexuality than it is to homosexuality from heterosexuality. I fail to see how anybody could deny that, after this many years of human civilization, obvious biological evolution, reams of common sense, etc, etc., monogamous heterosexuality is the obviously self-evident norm for people. That’s the standard everything else in human sexual behavior is measured against, whether one favors anything and everything or is puritanical about it. The idea of a “couple” or romantic coupling between two human beings, with two people being the key, rather than male and female being what is important in a heterosexual relationship, is more of a reflection of the culture of romance and “finding soulmates”, etc, rather than anything anchored in natural human behavior. Humans, especially males are NOT monogamous. And homosexual males even more so, come to mention it, when compared to heteros or lesbians. Why is or should be a “couple” so legally important, once hetero marriage has been thrown off the boat? It isn’t and won’t be important; don’t believe anybody who dishonestly says otherwise. Many advocates 10-20 years said EXACTLY the same thing when arguing for decent treatment and any legal recognition of homosexual relationships; that it was nothing but conspiracy talk to say gays would ever desire getting married.

And public health issues don’t exist outside of deliberate bigamy or whatever would be legally recognized polygamy? There are lawyers RIGHT NOW arguing polygamy should be legally recognized! How do you think AIDS was spread epidemically in 1981 when doctors had no clue what the hell it was? Originally, in the U.S., through gay bathhouses in San Fran, NYC, and other urban centers, after reportedly getting here from another continent. I’d say that was a public health issue, and political correctness prevented it from being dealt with; even back then the gay rights crowd was very powerful and influential over San Fran city council Democrats and they did not deal with it quickly and forcefully precisely because of that pressure and their own cowardice. Consequently, lots of people died.

#25 Comment By Adam Rurik On August 6, 2010 @ 2:05 am

Same-sex marriage has been legal here in Canada for five years now, and guess what? We remain as boring a country as ever. No mobs of gay men prowling the streets looking for young boys to convert and then wed, no marauding hordes of lesbians fondling straight women at every turn.

And no minister, priest, rabbi, imam, or High Eunuch of the Alpha Centaurian Order has had to perform a same-sex ceremony which contradicts their religious beliefs.

#26 Comment By ian On August 6, 2010 @ 2:51 am

So you don’t like gay people? What’s the crazy linkage about polygamy and gay marriage? Nobody is throwing hetero marriage as you call it off a boat. Can you throw a marriage off a boat? Is that where mine went? Did a gay person steal it?

Non gay people will still be just as married or non married regardless of whether gay people can marry their life partners. Will gay people mysteriously be a health risk upon getting a marriage license?

#27 Comment By Red Phillips On August 6, 2010 @ 5:53 am

While it is logically true that if we can’t legally forbid gay “marriage” the slippery slope would seem to lead us to not being able to legally forbid polygamy, but that is not the way this will go, because people who most notoriously argue in favor of polygamy are not swingers, but religious fundamentalist. This is a war against God and His commands so the RightThink Gestapo is not going to sanction any sort of religious justification. This is about forcing religious people to shed their fidelity to their faith. Just ask ian. For him pointing out that the Creator of the Universe condemns homosexuality makes one a “hater.”

#28 Comment By TomT On August 6, 2010 @ 9:15 am

The first fallacy is that we fight for the “good of the children”, and the deaf community nicely solved that for us, when they pointed out that many of them if faced with a medical procedure that could make their children “hearing”, would refuse the option because that would violate their opinion that they had been made “perfect” even though “hearing-people” would disagree.

So too, then, ultimately many gays will fight this issue until nobody is allowed to claim superiority for “two heterosexually monogamous” parents as being the perfect model of what is good for children. And there are arguments on all sides of this issue, some based on what has been observed to work, and some on religion, and some of theories of “social justice”. We will constantly hear that if “they” can find exceptions to what we hold up as an ideal, then that invalidates our model of what is the ideal goal for providing a parental sponsorship for children. Look at Hillary Clinton, “You can’t raise children locally, you have to raise them globally”. Hey Hillary, who paid the $5 million dollars for your kid’s wedding? Libs hold what’s good for “them” to be different than what’s good for “us”.

That all the same arguments can exist in relation to polygamy and beastiality, is irrelevant.

The argument over “nature vs nurture” is irrelevant. It DOESN’T MATTER to this argument whether or not “gayness” is a chosen lifestyle or a genetic mandate. Just as it would not matter whether a hetero-pedophile is motivated by a phychological abnormality or a genetic mandate.

Our country was founded on separation of church and state, a new idea at the time. But they didn’t do an honest job of separating govt from the religious concepts of marriage vows. Their second mistake was they assumed a perpetual moral and christian-friendly citizenry. There will be a perpetual attack on Christmas, Prayer, and Marriage, until we as a society truely think thru separation of church and state, and recognize atheism for just one more religion.

I see by the above comments, that some “get it”. 90% of the rest of the arguments we see here are from people who have trouble with honesty, in favor of their cause du jour.

#29 Comment By TomT On August 6, 2010 @ 10:12 am

Forgot to mention, if this was really about “rights”, and the power to visit a loved one in a hospital, and the “right” to divide and inheret property and rear children, then a simple mutual “power of attorney”, from the laws that existed 50 years ago, would have been sufficient.

This is all about championing “social justice” and atheism and homosexuality on one side, and a dishonesty on the other side to deal with the issues straightforwardly.

#30 Comment By Doug Pascover On August 6, 2010 @ 11:18 am

Austin, putting feathers on a mule to make it seem delicate.

Alternative answer: I dunno, it just sounded right.

#31 Comment By ian On August 6, 2010 @ 4:49 pm

The bible says lots of things …for example putting to death people wearing more than one type of cloth … imagine death for wearing a silk tie. There are a lot of legal rights associated directly with marriage. By denying adults any chance of obtaining those rights except via a dishonest marriage is restricting the freedoms of those Americans. Imagine if only gay people could get married and nobody else had the legal rights imbued by marriage? Would you stand for it? Perhaps we should kill all non christians and keep slaves as it also says in the old testament. Who cares what Levitacus thinks? He was not an apostle.
Good God Canada is still here after 5 years of being a sodomites paradise. Did the hetero marriages survive or did a homo steal them away? Come on Adam confess all did you all become raving nancies or did life carry on exactly as before.
If gay marriage goes thru in ten years time it’ll be no big deal and 5 bucks says it will not lead to ppl marrying horses or their gun collection.
Gay marriage is not an attack on christianity. Grow up get on with your own lives and let other people have the same rights as you take for granted every day.

#32 Comment By A.C. On August 7, 2010 @ 1:40 am

Yes, everything is just peachy & wonderful in Canada when the values of the sexual revolution meet Nazi leftists who don’t believe in freedom of speech or any religious liberty. I’m sure that’s just how the Vancouver Rape relief organization felt when the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, a fascist sick joke of an organization, like all the other province’s leftist goon squad show trial “tribunals” are, fined them $7500 because they were “discriminating” when they declined to hire a disturbed “transsexual”, a born male who had “become” female as a rape and abuse hotline counselor. Or when the Knights of Columbus were fined for “hurting the feelings” of a couple of lesbians who wanted their “wedding” on KoC property. (Why lesbians love the Knights of Columbus; that wasn’t any phony test case to try and persecute religious freedom and freedom of association, no, of course not.) Or when a printer and publisher, Scott Brockie, was fined for opposing homosexuality, and a Christian teacher named Chris Kempling was denied his appeal through this supposedly nonpartisan “tribunal” for the same. The Nazi chairman of this tribunal, some hag named Heather MacNaughton, and her colleagues oversaw all of this. Naaah, there’s really NO threat whatsoever to freedom and religious liberty from this push to criminalize opposition to immoral sexual behavior; why, all those stories one can easily read about in countries like Canada and Britain and western Europe must be the fevered imaginations of right-wing troglodytes, right?

Honestly, if some of those here aren’t even going to try to present a minimal argument, based on real facts, as opposed to imagined scenarios that no conservatives have presented, like cartoonish worlds where gays marry but straights don’t and hordes of gay men roam the streets, then, well, I’m at a loss as to why the hell you post anything in the first place.

#33 Comment By William Fankboner On August 7, 2010 @ 3:15 pm

Gay and lesbian activists are not interested in civil unions, which give them every advantage of conventional marriage; they want to mainstream their sensibility in American consciousness and make a travesty of a Christian sacrament. They won’t be happy until they put America in a unisex straight-jacket.

#34 Comment By ian On August 7, 2010 @ 6:29 pm

bullshit. Utter bullshit.

One thing gay people are not is Unisex. (gays are men and women idiot) There is just as varied attitudes appearances etc as everyone else. Gay people wanting to marry is nothing to do with a negative attitude towards any particular religion. Sounds more like you want to tell them what they are allowed to do or not do. Been ramming your agenda down anyones throat lately?

#35 Comment By BSDN On August 8, 2010 @ 12:24 am

“I could go on and on, but at this point the evidence is pretty clear, there are not to be any equal rights for gays in America from the perspective of the majority of Republicans (and a nice chunk of Democrats too).”

Let me give somebody a clue and that’s to put it mildly.
As a heterosexual white male, I cannot marry my mother, sister, daughter, more than one woman at once or a prepubescent girl, not to mention a dog, bicycle or TV or another man, not to mention a boy.
IOW sounds like discrimination to me.
IOW sounds like that great liberal bugaboo of inequality to me.

IOW the homosexuals need to stop bitching/whining, get in line and wait their turn, instead of trying to cut in front of everyone else.

IOW engraven on the face of the human race from the beginning of time is the distinction between the sexes. While at times it is more honored in the breach – the divorce rate today rather approaches a serial version of monogamy – marriage is between a man and a woman and all the king’s horses and all the king’s men, all the medical operations, lawsuits and judicial opinions, ain’t gonna change that.

I know you really feel like you are in love and really care and all that, but your feelings or mine are not the bottom line and last word.

Sorry about that, but it’s part of growing up and putting away the infantile and narcissistic self centered mentality that that great idol Leviathan thrives on as it seeks to devour all, including eventually, even the libertine fellow travelers and useful idiots that dutifully offer incense upon its altar and gladly sing its praises.

IOW religion isn’t half the opiate of the masses as sexual profligacy is – at least for the yapping class – but after sexual revolution and anarchy has served its purpose of destabilizing the society, there will be a time and place enough for firing squads and prison camps in the new world order. At least there sure was in the old Soviet Union.
Wanna bet it’ll be any different next time? Or is that too objective of a question to ask of the madly in love and starry eyed?

Thank you.

#36 Comment By david nance On August 8, 2010 @ 2:16 pm

I think that issue in this case is whether the people of the state or the judges will decide who is defined as a marriage.I think the solution is to propose an amendment to the constitution which defines marriage as between a man and women but allows for same sex civil unions.It seems to me that each side would get most of what it wanted in this case.The problem is neither side will give on this issue.to hard core gay activists,anything short of marriage is not enough.The hard right also refuses to compromise on this issue.Until this country moves to the middle and stops listening to the extremes of either side, this country will slowly decline because the will of the people will not be heard.

#37 Comment By Nate Weinstein On August 8, 2010 @ 8:51 pm

As a Reaganite pro-family values moral conservative I am against gay marriage, but I believe that by not allowing homosexual marriage, we will be allowing the terrorists to win the war on terrror.

#38 Comment By K.S. Tomasello On August 9, 2010 @ 1:34 am

I never understood either side of this argument.

On the one hand why is it so important for a couples/families relationship to be recognized/sanctioned/enforced by the Government? A couple/group is able to have any kind of private/religeous ceremony and any legal priviledges can be taken care off with a private contract.

On the other hand, if the prop 8 supporters end up “winning” then they will have succeeded in having the government enforce their particular definition of marriage with all of the force and violence at the state’s dispossal.

There will still be congregations that call themselves “Christian” with gay congregants and they will still perform “Marriage” ceremonys for their congregants. If prop8 becomes the law of the land, shall the State then force these Churches to cease and desist?

#39 Comment By ian On August 9, 2010 @ 3:22 am

You think what? Is there a debate at the Mc Donalds drive in window for the Weinsteins on a rare night out of their bunker… potatoes or extra fries which one won’t enable the terrorists?

#40 Comment By Jbraunstein On August 9, 2010 @ 5:25 pm

There are a few things that make this debate ridiculous:

People who have a religious/moral conviction against gay marriage have to realize that they don’t “own” the definition of marriage, and really don’t have any authority to withhold or prohibit other people from recognizing different definitions of marriage than they themselves hold. Different religious groups have various ideas on marriage as a sanctity. One interpretation has no natural, automatic superiority over another.

In a self-proclaimed free and pluralistic society, it is unwise to give into temptations of majoritarianism, unless you want to destroy freedom and pluralism. Individual rights that are not subject to electoral whims are necessary if a society is to remain free. This country’s laws have long considered marriage to be among those rights (rightly or wrongly), and it is now being recognized that there is no legally compelling reason to exclude that right to couples based solely on gender, as was similarly found in the cases of race, age, fertility or “fitness”. As per usual, legal expansion of rights comes in the midst of controversy and prior to a broad cultural consensus that accepts the expansion.

We’re only having this debate about marriage vs. civil unions because the government decided to interfere in the first place to endorse a specific, narrow concept of marriage (i.e. excluding same sex couples), rather than simply codify and enforce contracts without bias. This is social engineering that one would expect conservatives to oppose, if only for that it sets a bad precedent for the scope of State interference in private matters. But since they happened to agree with this particular interference, so much for principle.

Gays getting married doesn’t harm anyone or anything, in a strict evidence and causal-responsibility based sense. The Prop 8 supporters had the perfect opportunity to present this case in court and they simply could not. If you think its harmful in the abstract sense, then join the ranks of the collectivist social theorists who like to use ambiguous, non-falsifiable rationalizations to justify self-serving state coercion.

Lastly, if you want to forcibly deny something to people which if denied to you would cause you outrage and incredulity, simply because the thought of it makes you uncomfortable, or you don’t want to have to explain homosexuality to your kids, or you think gay people are somehow less deserving of equal treatment, then you’re a petty, selfish and cruel individual and worst of all, a flaming hypocrite!

P.S. to all the people using the bible as an argumentative crutch…have you eaten shellfish, worn poly-blend clothes, worked on Sunday or gotten a divorce lately?