Reader Comments on Same-Sex Marriage Issue

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DENISSE A:

I can tell that you tried to be non-biased about the information you included, 
but I just wanted to make a few suggestions that might help in the area against 
same sex marriage.

"Most religions consider homosexuality a sin. Virtually every religion in the world, including the 
major ones in this country, consider homosexuality unacceptable."

Virtually every religion in the world, including the major ones in this country, consider homosexuality unacceptable. It is 
offensive and a swipe to the religious freedom of the majority to have to recognize a relationship they consider sinful. 
The legal system in the United States evolved out of the laws contained in the Bible. We shouldn't go even farther to 
tear down those laws. *Buddhism, Neopagan religions, and Unitarian Universalism don't consider homosexuality unacceptable, 
Judaism, Taoism, Confucianism, Sikhism, and Hinduism all have varying views on it, and various different Christian religions 
are in favor of homosexuality (Episcopal Church, Old Catholic Church, Affirming Pentecostal Church, Presbyterian Church, 
Metropolitan Community Church, Reformed Church in America, and more). On to your second point, the majority is not being 
forced to recognize a relationship they consider sinful, the same sex marriage debate is about laws and rights, not about 
changing people's religious beliefs.

"It would weaken the definition and respect for the institution of marriage."

The 50 percent divorce rate has already weakened the definition of marriage. We shouldn't be taking further steps to define
what marriage is. A law allowing gay marriage would increase the number of joke or non-serious marriages, such as a couple 
of friends who want to save on taxes. Marriage is the most sacred institution in this country, and every society considers 
it the joining of a man and a woman. It makes biological sense since only a man and woman can pro-create. *What proof is there 
that a law allowing gay marriage would increase the number of joke or non-serious marriages? Why wouldn't people be doing it now? 
Everyone has same sex friends AND opposite sex friends, so why would it be more likely that people would have fake gay marriages 
than fake heterosexual marriages? Also, not every society considers marriage the joining of a man and a woman, for example, in 
Brazil, there is a tribe that has always had group marriages, of course we know there are many polygamist groups and religions 
in the U.S. as well, and the Dutch define it as a union between two consenting adults.

"It would further weaken the traditional family values essential to our society."

The building blocks of our society and the thing that makes it strong is the traditional family of man, woman, and children. 
It is what has sustained us through two world wars, terrorist attacks, a Great Depression, and numerous other challenges over 
the centuries. While friends & lovers come and go, your family is always there. The main reason our culture and values have 
started to crumble is the weakening of families. 

"Introducing another form of "family" would only make the situation worse."
 
This point makes it sound like marriage and family has been the same throughout history, and same sex marriage would be the 
first thing to change it, resulting in its end.  This just isn't true, families used to be formed as big groups for hunting 
and gathering societies, then we had marriage as what we know now but with almost arranged marriages within wealthy and powerful 
groups, in the 1900s we had a family where the man earned the money and the woman would stay home and do household chores (a 
lot of mysogyny that is now unacceptable), we also had marriages only being legal within members of the same race with people  
actually thinking that God did not want blacks and whites to join together. Clearly, we have always been changing and becoming 
more and more progressive with time, and it has moved us through the changes and we've made it through all the wars and terrible 
things mentioned above.

"It could provide a slippery slope in the legality of marriage (e.g. having multiple wives or marrying an animal could be next)."

Gay rights activists claim that these marriages should be allowed because it doesn't hurt anyone, but it could start a chain reaction 
that destroys the whole idea of marriage. If someone wants to marry his dog, why shouldn't he be able to? What if someone wants to marry 
their brother or parent? What if someone wants to marry their blow-up doll or have 10 wives? Unless we develop some firm definition of 
what a marriage is, the options are endless. If these options sound absurd, remember that all it takes is a few activist judges to use 
the statute to open the door. It doesn't matter if 95 percent of the population disagrees with the policy, one judge can interpret the 
case the way he or she wants and use the doctrine of stare decisis to impose a law on everyone. Do you remember how two judges in 
California recently declared the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional? If the decision hadn't been overturned, it would have prevented 
millions of children from being able to say the pledge every morning, despite the fact that 95+ percent of Americans disagreed with the 
decision.*Marriage should be defined as "consenting adults". What if someone wants to have 10 wives? Well then we let them, polygamy 
does not hurt anyone, it is simply a belief different from the majority, and in this country we're supposed to have religious freedom, 
yet polygamy is illegal even though it is part of many religions' moral code.

"The gay lifestyle is not something to be encouraged, as a lot of research shows it leads to a much lower life expectancy, psychological 
disorders, and other problems. Studies show that homosexuals, for a variety of reasons, have life expectancies of approximately 
20 years less than the general population. Just like a lifestyle of smoking, drinking, etc., unhealthy lifestyles should be discouraged." 

The main reason listed in the link for lower life expectancies is HIV/AIDS, which is most common among gay men than any other group, but 
what about homosexual women? What about african americans having the highest rate of diabetes? That also lowers life expectancy and is a 
lifestyle, yet african americans are allowed to marry. Schizophrenics, alcoholics, drug addicts, and sociopaths also have a high risk of 
psychological disorders and problems, but they can also marry, so why single out just one group?
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MICHELLE K:

You've done a good job generally, I think, but the assertion that there is "a 
proven biological causation" for homosexuality is patently false. There is no 
scientific consensus about the etiology of sexual orientation. The scientific 
studies that have been done concerning hormonal, genetic, or other biological 
explanations for sexual orientation have generally been small and/or the 
findings in support of biological explanations have been correlational NOT 
causational. Here's what the American Psychological Association says on the subject: 
"There is no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual 
develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay, or lesbian orientation. Although much 
research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and 
cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit 
scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular 
factor or factors. Many think that nature and nurture both play complex roles; 
most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual 
orientation."

Some folks seem to latch onto any possible biological 
explanation because they seek legitimization in such explanations. This is a 
fallacy and a dangerous one at that but what matters most is that, as pointed 
out above, there is no conclusive scientific evidence to that effect. FWIW, I 
support full legal marriage equality for LGBT people.

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PETER S:


I may be young and I certainly have a non religious background, but it seems to me the fundamental issue at stake 
is the denying of civil rights to a minority of society.  Which appears to be based upon largely a discriminatory 
basis, given the vast majority including criminals that enjoy these benefits.  I believe another result of 
this injustice is the economic unfairness homosexual relationships encounter when dealing with similar 
childless heterosexual relationships.

In short, due to the legal protections of marriage which are civil rights, the ability to marry someone of 
your choosing then becomes a civil rights issue.  This is being denied to homosexual couples b/c of 
several reasons. 

The ones that stand out to me are: 

1.  society does not wish it to be so, proven through various state constitutional amendments and legislation
2.  It would redefine our traditional view of marriage, possibly degrade our society and possibly 
be a gateway to other violations of that definition
3.  Many of our religions in this country oppose such a measure and to allow it would violate their freedoms
4.  There would be added cost to programs through taxes and to businesses
5.  There are legal avenues to attempt to acquire rights such as custody of children, 
hosptial\prison visitation, being capable of making important immediate health care decisions, inheritance and the like.

Marriage certainly has religious aspects and its not in the governments place to intervene on that issue.  
However, I believe in equality, there should be no civil disparity over sexual orientation.  So I will 
focus on points 4 and 5.  

4.  There would be added cost for marriage benefits through taxes and to businesses

If the concern over marriage benefits is economic then perhaps we should concern ourselves with reduction 
of those costs instead.  So my question is what benefit does a childless heterosexual couple provide 
that a homosexual couple could not?  I believe there to be none other then possibly child bearing.  
If providing these benefits to homosexual couples is not to our economic advantage, why is to our advantage 
for childless heterosexual couples?  Do they not essentially perform the same function in society?  If it is 
a matter of stability provided in relationships, then why not exclude criminals, social dissidents, those on 
welfare, marriages of convenience from receiving such marriage benefits?  Why is it helpful to our society 
to encourage marriages involving such individuals through providing those benefits?  Many of us would cry out if 
these people lost their rights, and rightfully so.  Stripping individuals without children and that don't meet 
certain criteria of economic marriage benefits would reduce a lot of costs from our taxes and to businesses.  
However, I don't want to live in that society.

5.  There are legal avenues to attempt to acquire rights such as custody of children, hosptial\prison 
visitation, being capable of making important immediate health care decisions, inheritance and the like.

 On point 5, why does it seem necessary to grant these legal protections to those that are married 
 automatically if such can readily obtained and adequately protected without marriage?  Such provisions 
 have failed various times through the course of history when involving non-related\non-married parties 
 and still fail today.

  When you become married, you automatically obtain a joint right to another person's assets 
  when there is no pre-nuptial agreement.  Homosexual couples are denied this.

  If a person's partner gets in a car wreck, and desires not to be kept on life support, married couples 
  do not have to battle as often to have the right to express their partner's desires.  Again, this implied 
  right of married couples are denied to homosexual couples.

  Few if any married couples would stand for having to obtain and pay for their legal rights through legal paperwork.  
  Thankfully, they already have these rights.  So why are we forcing those that are homosexual to go through 
  these procedures to acqurie rights our married couples wouldn't stand to have to fight\pay for?  

We need to stop treating homosexually members of our society unequally and stripping them of rights that even 
released murders, rapists, and those that just want to shave a few bucks of the cost living get to enjoy, 
simply because they're heterosexual.
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JERRY S:

After the California Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in May,  the Roman Catholic archbishop of San Francisco 
apparently approached  the Mormons. On the way, he gathered up support from evangelical Christians, conservative black 
and Latino pastors, and myriad smaller ethnic groups with strong religious ties.The Mormon church then issued a statement 
claiming "the formation of families is central to the Creator's plan", yet that is exactly what gay marriage supporters 
want to do. Even one of the Mormon defenders of Prop 8 stated "We are pro-marriage", but so are supporters of gay marriage.
Clearly these religious groups, in the name of their Creator, are deciding for themselves that they know for certain that 
God wants only straight families and male-female marriage. These people, on behalf of a loving Supreme Being, are taking 
the rights to form families and legal relationships away from other citizens, in the name of morality. 

When it comes to morality, how can these religious groups, who are supposed to not get involved in politics in accordance 
with the IRS, be exempt from paying Federal taxes? To add insult to injury, how is it moral for gays and lesbians, who 
are required to pay the same personal income taxes as straights, to be forbidden from certain rights afforded other citizens?
If this truly is a question of morality, I think these so-called religious leaders need to ask God for forgiveness. 
In fact, I think God should sue them for misrepresentation.
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JOHN F:

You are not including in your list of pro's and cons the most important 
arguments against allowing gay marriage at this point in time.
 
1.  First of all, it is totally incorrect to assert that gay orientation is entirely 
"biological."   As I am sure you know, identical twins have exactly the same genes.  
Yet, when one identical twin grows up gay the other does not, at least half the time 
(and arguably much more than half the time).  The consensus in the scientific community 
is that gay orientation is triggered by a complex mix of genetic and environmental 
factors.  Your web site entries should reflect that.
 
2.  Given the above reality, we should expect that cultural factors can trigger the 
misfortune of gay orientation in an individual.  So, the cultural sea change of gay 
marriage, with its implicit endorsement of all gay sexual acts as fully sanctioned 
forms of marital love-making, will most likely steer many more kids into growing up 
gay.  This represents potential tragedy for both the kids themselves and their families.  
Any assertion that being gay oriented is "just as good" as being heterosexually oriented 
is pure rationalization and self-deception.  When nearly all parents would prefer that 
all their kids grow up "straight," would anyone argue that this is a matter of 
ignorance and bigotry?  So therefore they are all closed-minded and you are the only 
enlightened individual?
 
3.  The truly scary thing about gay marriage is that it is absolutely irreversible.  
Once, granted, that right cannot be rescinded, even if the social results are plainly 
catastrophic.  For example, what if the percentage of gays in the general population 
goes up by 50% or more, with tragic consequences for all or most of those additional 
folks who are stuck with being gay?  Or what if the number of gay suicides actually 
goes up because there are so many more gay folks out there?  How do you know that 
Canadians generally will not come to regret their sudden and highly questionable 
decision to allow gay marriage?  The answer is that you do not know, because nobody 
in the world knows.  Only time will tell, and we won't know the answer for a number of years.
 
4.  Given the above, the only sensible course is to postpone allowing gay marriage 
in the US until we know the answers.  That is, disallow it for now, knowing that 
we could still allow it at some future time.  Even a constitutional amendment that 
prohibits it can be overridden by a subsequent amendment.  Of course, exactly that 
mechanism was used at the US Federal level in the last century.
 
5.  So   . . .  you need to correct the misstatement that gay orientation is 
biologically based.  And you need add two points that oppose gay marriage:
 
a.  The cultural attitudes that underlie gay marriage are likely to result in a 
substantial increase in the number of kids who grow up gay.  This would amount 
to a profoundly sad development for most if not all of the additional youngsters 
who are so affected.
 
b.  We cannot know in advance the long-term effects that gay marriage will have in 
Canada.  Those results in Canada may well prove extremely harmful and extremely 
unpopular with Canadians, but gay marriage rights cannot be rescinded once they 
have been granted.  So, common sense dictates that we must postpone allowing gay 
marriage in the US until we know the long-term consequences of gay marriage in Canada.

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FRANCES M from OREGON:

First, people have a mistaken view of the history of marriage. Until the 
late 18th century, about the same timing as the French and American 
Revolutions, love had absolutely nothing to do with marriage and even as 
late as the Victorian era (second half of 1800s) marrying for love was 
looked on as something only poor and ignorant people did. Marriage was a 
blood bond contract between two families to further political or financial 
goals. This was true for all classes except perhaps the very poor who had 
nothing to lose. The concept of marrying for love was roundly condemned from 
the pulpit as being the first of a slippery slope to the disintegration of 
the family and the ruination of marriage itself.

But I digress.

I am for the legalization of marriage for same sex couples. I will take each 
NO point separately.

1. Most religions consider homosexuality a sin.
Many religions do not consider homosexuality to be a sin. Many US citizens 
are not religious. Many US citizens are atheist. This is why basing a law or 
a right on whether or not something is a sin is unconstitutional. So if one 
wants to live in a country that bases its laws on protecting people against 
sin, may I suggest Italy, Spain or Saudi Arabia? If you think marrying 
someone of the same sex is a sin, don't do it. You have that right.

2. It would weaken the definition and respect for the institution of 
marriage.
What couple in their right minds allows someone else to define their 
marriage? Whoever in the world believes there is one definition of marriage 
other than a legal commitment into which two people enter? And yes I said 
legal, because it is legal for two atheists to get married. It is legal to 
get married by a judge and it is legal to get married by a person who got a 
license off the internet. Religion takes no place in these couples right to 
be married. Perhaps these marriages would not be recognized by some 
churches, but so what? Many churches do not recognize marriages other than 
those held within their own doctrine. My husband and I do not now nor will 
have children and we keep separate finances. Many people don't think this is 
a real marriage.

Taking religion out of it, a legal marriage is a legally binding contract 
between two consulting adults. Whether or not a particular union is blessed 
within a church is the right of that particular church's doctrines and the 
couple involved. And just in case someone starts screaming I am against 
those who enter their commitment by asking Gods blessing or vowing before 
God, au contraire. I am just saying in the U.S. we have the CHOICE to go 
either way. That is freedom. That is liberty.

And as far as people losing respect for marriage, how in the world can one 
say that same-sex couples don't respect marriage? If they did not honor and 
respect marriage they would not be fighting so hard for the right to do it. 
They would just fill out contracts for the protections and be done with it. 
But they want their commitments to be respected. They want what we have.  If 
one really wants to increase respect for marriage, make it harder for 
EVERYONE to get married and for EVERYONE to get divorced. Far too many 
people enter into marriage without thinking about it. 50% of heterosexual 
marriages end in divorce. What's up with that?

3. It would further weaken the traditional family values essential to our 
society.
I hate to tell you, but most traditional family values are pretty dead. 
What killed them?  Both parents working and spending little time with their 
kids. Kids need a LOT of time not just "quality time".  You can see it in 
crime statistics, declining health in children, increased teen suicide, 
lower academic results and on and on and on. We all see families where both 
parent work owning huge houses, multiple cars, boats and debt up the wazzoo 
and the parents spending 10 hours a week with the kids. That's strong family 
values just because the parents are heterosexual?  On the other end of the 
spectrum, for far too many it is a financial necessity but why could one 
income 50 years ago buy a lifestyle that takes 2 now? THIS is a family value 
issue.

4. It could provide a slippery slope in the legality of marriage (e.g. 
having multiple wives or marrying an object could be next).
Now this one really gets my goat. As I mentioned above, without the 
religious aspect a marriage is a legal contract between consulting adults. 
In this country, to be a legally consulting adult one has to be human, at or 
above the age of consent, mentally competent and under no coercion to enter 
into the contract. One has to be a legally consenting adult to enter into 
ANY legally binding contract, period.  An animal is not a legally consenting 
adult. A lamp is not a legally consenting adult. A child is not a legally 
consenting adult. And a family member, i.e. son, daughter, sister or brother, is 
not a legally consenting adult because in incestuous relationships there is 
ALWAYS a level of coercion. Don't let anyone tell you differently.  As far 
as multiple wives, personally I don't have a problem with that either as 
long as all parties ARE LEGALLY CONSENTING ADULTS!!

In closing I would like to add this. The Constitution of the United States 
was intended by the founders of this country to do two things: LIMIT the 
power of the government over the citizens (in the main Constitution) and to 
ensure the inalienable rights of minority citizens from the tyranny of the 
majority (The Bill of Rights). Limit the power of the government, ensure 
minority rights. Where does denying the right to marry fall in these amazing 
documents? Nowhere.
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BOB from GREEN BAY, WI:

I disagree with some of your points on the "Yes" side:

1.) Denying them is a violation of religious freedom (civil and religious marriages are two separate institutions).
This is a moral issue and not a religious one. I my opinion, this argument is just an attempt by proponents of the gay agenda to cloud the issue and divert attention away from the heart of the matter. If some people's morals are based on religious beliefs, then so be it. But you don't have to be religious to have morals. The majority of Americans are opposed to gay marriage. For example, in March 2000, Proposition 22 - which calls for a ban on recognizing such marriages - was passed by 61%-39% in California.

2.) Marriage benefits (such as joint ownership, medical decision-making capacity) should be available to all couples.
First, no one gets married so that they can have hospital visitation rights. That is not the primary purpose for marriage. Second, there are plenty of legal avenues to accomplish the same goals. Wills and such can be set up to pass wealth on to others. A medical durable power of attorney can be drawn up to give anyone you choose the right to make medical decisions on your behalf if you be come incapacitated. etc....

3.) Homosexuality is an accepted lifestyle nowadays with a proven biological causation.
As long as there has been recorded history, there have been things such as murder as well. But a recorded history of an act does not make that act acceptable or morally correct. Many researchers also believe that their may be a biological cause or bent which would drive people to become serial killers or child molesters. Should we deem these practices as socially acceptable as well? Please don't get me wrong. I am not placing homosexuals in the same class as murders and child molesters, but rather trying to make a point. Just because someone may have a biological excuse for their behavior does not make that behavior correct.

4.) Denying these marriages is a form of minority discrimination.
I disagree. To me this is not a discrimination issue, but rather an attempt by one minority group to break down moral standards that have been adhered to for centuries as well as to redefine marriage and rewrite laws to gain access to privileges and benefits that they are not entitled to. I will elaborate on this later.

5.) It doesn't hurt society or anyone in particular.
I completely disagree. First, the minority is trying to force the majority to accept and support (through tax dollars, having to provide benefits ...) to accept something that they are morally opposed to. If this is between two individuals and no one else, why are the homosexual activists pushing so had to get pro-homosexual material into school curriculums where it is taught to children against the will of many of their parents. If it is between two people and no one else, then why not keep it there. Second, by forcing a people to accept something that it is morally opposed to, thus rewriting societies 'moral code', you weaken the moral fabric of that society. Finally, what if a church or certain group does disapproval and they employ one or more individuals who are homosexual? Are you going to force that church or group to extend benefits to that same sex partner, against their will. Now you have violated their rights.

6.) The only thing that should matter in marriage is love.
If that is the number one reason for homosexuals wanting to get married, why do they need the state or anyone else to recognize that commitment and love. They do not need the recognition of the state or other people to be committed to one another. If their love and commitment to one another is true, then whether or not a government body or other organization choose to recognize that love and commitment shouldn't matter or diminish it.

7.) It encourages people to have strong family values and give up high-risk sexual lifestyles.
Again, this would depend on your definition of family values. By my definition of a family, (one man, one woman, and potentially one or more children) yes it degrades that definition. Also, the argument of "giving up high-risk, sexual lifestyles" to me seems to conflict with the argument put forth in #6. What is homosexuality? Is it two caring individuals who love one another and are committed to one another? If it is, then wouldn't that be enough of a reason to want to abandon the "frivolous lifestyles; in other words, having frequent, unprotected sex with many partners"? Just for the record, I am against that kind of lifestyle, regardless of whether those involved are of the same sex or the opposite sex.

The opposition to gay marriage for me boils down to a moral issue. Grant it, my morals are derived predominantly from my Christian beliefs based on the Bible, but I do not believe that how you arrive at your moral beliefs is important in this debate. After all, there are many other religions that adhere to many of the same morals. In fact, many who would consider themselves to be nonreligious adhere to similar morals. The laws that govern a society are, in their simplest form, the written morals of that society. Society as a majority agrees that it is morally wrong to steal, and so laws are written against theft. Society agrees that it is morally unacceptable to commit murder and so laws are written prohibiting murder. Society agrees that it is morally right to allow everyone to practice their religion as they see fit, so we have laws to protect freedom of religion. Society has deemed it abhorrent for adults to have sexual contact with children, so laws are written to protect children. Why than is it not acceptable for society to take a stand on what it considers morally acceptable or not acceptable as it relates to marriage.

What worries me most is the attempt by a small minority of the population to rewrite the written morals which the majority says it wants to adhere to. In my mind this is not at all about discrimination. Is the serial killer or child molester discriminated against when society enforces it's morals and locks them in jail. Please don't get me wrong. I am NOT placing homosexuals in the same class as murders and child molesters, but rather trying to make a point. Does society have a right to uphold a moral standard that the majority of it's members say they adhere to or doesn't it? Many of the same arguments in favor of allowing gay marriages could very easily be applied to make a case for allowing an adult to marry a juvenile. Will we be rewriting the definition of marriage again in a couple of years to allow for this? Will we have to include marriages between multiple people or between humans and animals? You may think that this line of debate is foolish, but not to long ago the though of allowing gay marriage would have been considered just a outlandish. The bottom line is where do we draw the line? Does society have a right to draw lines at all? Aren't laws society's moral lines in the sand? You are allowed to go to this point and no farther, that is all we will accept. If we chip away at a societies morals, we erode it's overall ability to define right and wrong. It's ability to govern and the rule of law. This can already be seen in places like New York and California. Back in March of 2000 for example, California voted in favor of Proposition 22 - which calls for a ban on recognizing gay marriages. It was passed by 61%-39%. It became law, but yet hundreds of people, including the mayor of San Francisco has chosen to ignore that law.

If this disregard for the law is allowed to continue, then in effect what we are saying is that society does not have the right to take a moral stand and decide what is and is not acceptable. Carry that to the next and not to distant step, and what you have is no right and wrong. No moral absolutes. No law. "A society without laws is anarchy. Societies that ignore the laws are condemned to violence and chaos. " Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-California) - House Judiciary Committee hearing - December 10, 1998.

Some additional Quotes.

The following two quotes are from the BBC article "California rejects gay marriage" March 8, 2000. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/668765.stm "As Californians, we are proud of our diversity and tolerance but there are societal boundaries which should be preserved. Tonight we have preserved traditional marriage," Robert Glazier, communications director for the Yes-on-22 campaign.

"Yes-on-22 argued that homosexual couples should be allowed the freedom to sort out their private domestic arrangements but should not be allowed to "redefine marriage" for the rest of Californians."
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LAURA from APPLETON, WI:

Until we, as a nation, get past Bob's viewpoint that government is there to legislate morality, these kinds of issues will come up over and over again. Government should uphold everyone's individual rights to life and liberty, but it should not tell them how to live their lives. Murder and theft are not and should not be against the law because of "morality", but because they infringe on the rights of someone else.

~ez_ldquo~Gay marriage could well destroy the civic institution of marriage that has been defined by more than a century of governmental tinkering."
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LAURA H:

With this topic i ask, what ever happened to the separation of church and state. Isn't marriage a religious ceremony and combining of 2 people in a loving unity?
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BRENDA:

I think you're missing a view point on your "balanced" view of Same-Sex marriage. You're "right" is too far right and your "left" is too far left. The fact that most religions think it's a sin should be irrelevant. The real issue is the rights of individuals who decide to join their lives together to receive the same benefits as married couples. Because most religions define homosexuality as a sin, those who have chosen the life style feel they have to justify their choice. Thus they spend all their effort trying to make others believe what they do. The argument shouldn't be about sex and what is a sin or not. It should be about rights. We should all put our efforts into getting the same benefits for Civil Unions as we have for Marriage. If two people decide to live together and agree to join their interests in the eyes of the government, then they should receive the same benefits as those who are married. What they do in their bedroom, is completely irrelevant. The Bible says, "render unto Ceasar that which is Ceasar's". I don't want the government basing my rights on whether or not my actions agree to a particular religious belief. Though I happen to believe that homosexuality is a sin, I don't need the government to tell me that. Next time they might be pushing something I don't believe in. We need to work towards fair, not towards any particular religious beliefs. And we shouldn't let the definition of the word "marriage" versus "civil union" be a hang up. Let's take the whole reference to "marriage" out of it and call them all "civil unions".
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RICHARD C:

Since a gay marriage is not something that is blessed by God...clearly in the Bible marriage is the union of a man and a woman blessed by God then gay people should not be able to practice the teachings of the Bible. These include days off for Good Friday, Easter and Christmas. Is this a fair statement? Hypocrisy can not be tolerated.
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LAUREN H from <Spokane, WA>:

This is my topic of my junior research paper. I may be young, but I'm extremely into politics. If things would have gone my way in November, George Bush would have suffered a huge loss in the election.

But the fact is, that the rights of a certain people (homosexuals) have been desolated. The choice of whether gays should marry or not having been on ballots of the 2004 election was discrimination of the high

est kind. "All men are created equal" as stated in The Declaration of Independance. We are not abiding by the basic civil rights and the foundation of America that our Forefathers have laid down for us. I interviewed a man for my paper a few days ago that was anti-gay marriage. He said he felt as though they are drawing attention to themselves. "I'm not discriminating..." he stated, "I just feel they can live without

these marriages. I don't want to have to deal with seeing a man and a man or a woman and a woman being together." So in other words he wants them to be discreate in their relationships. I feel this is favoritism and I feel it's this kind of hate that is keeping America from having many allies. The Government is limiting our choices we make as citizens. What happened to the idea of separation of Church and State?

No one has to like the idea of homosexuals. But I believe they should tolerate it as acceptable human beings.
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AMANDA W:

whether we believe the sun is the sun it is still the sun.whether we believe that it is hot is it still hot. does it really matter if we believe it is is true or not? the same thing goes for God he is God whether we believe it or not. people pay the punishments for sin whether we believe it or not. God does not have a democracy he is the absolute ruler the supreme God .He sets the rules. he hates sin! when we choose to compromise we pay the price. same sex relationships is sin and same sex marriage does not even exist it is an abomintion before the lord. those who take pleasure in it and those who take part in it are just alike in His eyes. people like to say that church people discriminate but the truth is absolute and there are rules that govern our existence on this earth from the time we disobey we effect adverse results. God is God whether we like it or not . and we all will reap what we sow . this things are cause for destruction for all of us.
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CLARISSA:

Lets say 70% of the population in the United States did turn gay now you have 30% who are heterosexual. What you think will happen to our birth rate. Do you think is going to boom? or do you think it will drop. What type of military we will have? Do you think we will be able to defend ourselves from the future wars or invaders? There is a logical reason why God design us the way he did. A man needs a woman and a woman needs a man to procreate. If we fail in this which is our true nature we will seize to exist.
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VICTOR R:

I never hear any research on the abnormality of homosexual behavior...before the attempt to let another traditional family need fall to a growing moral crash, let's look at the cause.! !Stand up America!
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AMANDA E:

I'm currently researching for my paper on the controversy of gay marriage. Upon finishing this article and the previous reader comments, I feel both appalled and stunned.

Firstly, Frances M from Oregon is someone I would enjoy arguing with, against other religious diehards. Laura H, the seperation of Church and State (and lack of) has been glaringly obvious to me too.

Second, Amanda, I'm embarassed to share a name with you. Balancedpolitics comment section is not the place to spew your religious beliefs, with typos and misspellings, no less. Not only is it a basic religion rant, you provide no logic or understanding of what you (apparently) just read.

Thirdly, Clarissa, why on earth would 70% of the nation magically 'become' gay? Why not just assume that 98% of women will instantaneously become infertile when an Independent President is elected? And as for our military, with this economic crisis, we won't be hurting for an army for the next serveral decades as employment reaches unheard-of highs. Please don't let me start about how you used "God" and "logic" in the same bloody sentence. Pet peeve: we will cease not seize, to exist, according to your backwards logic. As for the population in this fairytale hypothesis, a small fyi: WE'RE OVERPOPULATED. At the rate that Americans consume and produce, our population should probably much, much smaller than it is if we want to keep having a human race. So, gay marriage just might save the planet. Who knew?

To those who said that same sex marriage couples should just quietly affirm their vows and go on to their daily lives with no recognized change, how about you file for divorce and then continue to live with your partner? Watch the bills creep up, and the tax benefits you had taken for granted disappear. Explain to your friends and relatives, that yes, you're committed to each other, but no, you aren't married. When your spouse ends up in a minor accident and needs to go to the hospital, wait in the front lobby, because--guess what?--you don't have visiting rights. "If their love and commitment to one another is true, then whether or not a government body or other organization choose to recognize that love and commitment shouldn't matter or diminish it." (Yes, you Bob from WI) And another: "First, no one gets married so that they can have hospital visitation rights. That is not the primary purpose for marriage." Heterosexual couples get married for various reasons. Love, money, status, BEING DRUNK IN VEGAS. And who are you do decide the primary purpose of marriage?

You do realize that a minority, demanding the issues of the majority is called providing equality right? Discrimination never happens to the majority. The majority discriminates AGAINST the minority. Would you in good conscience say that interracial marriages are "not entitled to" benefits, even though they're heterosexual unions? If this was forty years ago, I bet you'd be arguing that as well.

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