Homework Help

Gay MarriageDo we really live in a free nation, when in 2008 we still have a majority...

user profile pic

alohaspirit | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Assistant Educator

Posted November 13, 2008 at 8:02 PM via web

dislike 5 like
Gay Marriage

Do we really live in a free nation, when in 2008 we still have a majority of the citizen body in CALIFORNIA of all places voting against gay marriage?  What are your thoughts and opinions on whether you are for or against gay marriage?

55 Answers | Add Yours

user profile pic

linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted November 14, 2008 at 1:43 PM (Answer #3)

dislike 1 like

Of course we live in a free nation. That point was proved by the result of the election. Despite what the courts had ruled, the people had the freedom to say no. In a nation in which the people had no freedom, there would not even have been the opportunity to vote on such a decision.

The vote does not take away anybody's "right" to marriage. What it does is declare that people of the same gender cannot legally marry in that state. If the true sticking point is the rights of inheritance and next-of-kin issues, then maybe the activists need to work on strengthening civil commitment laws instead of changing marriage laws.

user profile pic

omni | College Teacher | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted November 14, 2008 at 2:06 PM (Answer #4)

dislike 1 like

Of course we live in a free nation. That point was proved by the result of the election. Despite what the courts had ruled, the people had the freedom to say no. In a nation in which the people had no freedom, there would not even have been the opportunity to vote on such a decision.

The vote does not take away anybody's "right" to marriage. What it does is declare that people of the same gender cannot legally marry in that state. If the true sticking point is the rights of inheritance and next-of-kin issues, then maybe the activists need to work on strengthening civil commitment laws instead of changing marriage laws.

Actually, the vote directly did remove the right to marry someone of the same sex. The California state consistution promises equal treatment unde the law, so when a law related to same-sex marriage was passed, it was constitutional. Foes of same-sex marriage realized the only way they could take away this right would be by an amendment to the state constitution. Proposition 8 amended California's constitution to specifically define marriage as between one man and one woman.

Almost all the arguments against same-sex marriage are religious ones. This is why it seems apparent to me that as a nation with both freedom of religion and a separation of chuch and state, same-sex marriage has to be legal. 

The state should not be forcing churches to perform same-sex weddings, and the churches should have no influence on the state's marriage laws.

user profile pic

alohaspirit | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Assistant Educator

Posted November 14, 2008 at 6:54 PM (Answer #5)

dislike 1 like

Thank you response #4, that is exactly what I am talking about.  How can we say we are a country of freedom and a country of free religion, but we deny someone the right to marry based on the majority of religious values in our country?  This is  not right at all, and I agree with the many people protesting this proposition in California.  In this country, we are letting the religious majority rule, and that is plain unconstitutional!

user profile pic

linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted November 20, 2008 at 12:15 PM (Answer #7)

dislike 1 like

Thank you response #4, that is exactly what I am talking about.  How can we say we are a country of freedom and a country of free religion, but we deny someone the right to marry based on the majority of religious values in our country?  This is  not right at all, and I agree with the many people protesting this proposition in California.  In this country, we are letting the religious majority rule, and that is plain unconstitutional!

Why is marriage the sticking point? Plenty of male/female couples live together without a license saying they're married. Why not try to get equal rights as a couple without calling it marriage?

user profile pic

linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted November 20, 2008 at 12:20 PM (Answer #6)

dislike 1 like

I had to come back to this topic because of a news story I heard on the radio this morning. Attorney Gloria Allred has already filed suit in California's Supreme Court to overturn the election. Allred stated that the courts should not be bound to the "whim of the majority." Whim??? Why even have an election if you can get the courts to change the outcome if you don't like it? What is democracy but the "whim of the majority"?

user profile pic

omni | College Teacher | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted November 20, 2008 at 12:36 PM (Answer #8)

dislike 1 like

I had to come back to this topic because of a news story I heard on the radio this morning. Attorney Gloria Allred has already filed suit in California's Supreme Court to overturn the election. Allred stated that the courts should not be bound to the "whim of the majority." Whim??? Why even have an election if you can get the courts to change the outcome if you don't like it? What is democracy but the "whim of the majority"?

It is a little different because in this case, the constitution of the state was changed by a simple majority. Most other constitutions, including the US Constitution, require a much higher threshold to change.

I'm not saying that Allred is correct, but this is somewhat a different case then a simple election.

user profile pic

omni | College Teacher | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted November 20, 2008 at 12:38 PM (Answer #9)

dislike 1 like

Thank you response #4, that is exactly what I am talking about.  How can we say we are a country of freedom and a country of free religion, but we deny someone the right to marry based on the majority of religious values in our country?  This is  not right at all, and I agree with the many people protesting this proposition in California.  In this country, we are letting the religious majority rule, and that is plain unconstitutional!

Why is marriage the sticking point? Plenty of male/female couples live together without a license saying they're married. Why not try to get equal rights as a couple without calling it marriage?

I have a feeling that this is eventually what will happen-- the state will create the legal apparatus (civil union) and churches can individually decide whether or not to call it "marriage".

user profile pic

kwoo1213 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted November 20, 2008 at 11:53 PM (Answer #10)

dislike 1 like

I definitely see your point about the U.S. being a free country that is known for its "tolerance" and generosity; voting to not allow gays and lesbians to marry goes against this.  However, the people of California did vote to not allow these marriages. 

user profile pic

eyezone | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 22, 2008 at 9:13 AM (Answer #11)

dislike 1 like

I don't understand your point about California...the majority wins any vote.  Are you saying the majority in California swayed the nation's results?  In that case, I'm surprised that anyone in California voted against gay marriage, but not surprised that the majority of other states did.

At any rate, the issue of gay marriage is a sticky one.  I have many friends who are gay, and I love them all.  However, my religion expressly states that gay relationships are sinful and should not be allowed.  On the other hand, as a humanist, it seems only fair that gay individuals should be able to live and love monogamously as heterosexuals do.  They should be able to buy homes and other large investment items together without the risk of losing everything should the partner die due to family squabbles over property rights. 

 

Being married, gay or straight, does not guarantee living and loving monogamously -- have you seen the divorce rates lately?  I have been married, and although now divorced, from a tax perspective, there are huge benefits and write-offs when married, that are just not available being single. Nevertheless, the issue for me on gay marriage is two fold: We should look at the larger picture in terms of what is best for children and our country. If the whole purpose for getting married was for the purposes of procreation, then are we leaving the future aspect of life to genetic predisposition? My other point is the issue issue of gay marriage being termed a civil rights issue.  I'm sorry, but in my workplace, gay individuals have the right to establish insurance coverage for their "domestic partner." However, if I as a woman am living with a man, this "domestic partner coverage is not available to me.  Living and loving is perfectly fine for all; however, making allowances for some that does not bring equality to all is unfair and upsets the total balance. Here's my win-win solution to the problem: Allow gays to wed, but just don't call it a marriage.

user profile pic

pmiranda2857 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 25, 2008 at 3:34 PM (Answer #12)

dislike 1 like

I have been hearing on the radio that Gay groups are targeting people who supported Prop 8, zeroing in on them like a laser beam, making trouble for these people.

I firmly believe that marriage is between one man and one woman, however that does not mean that when two same sex individuals love each other that they are not committed to one another and can obtain a civil union.

What strikes me as the most curious is that Gay people demand, demand, that a time honored tradition that is religiously based, and the foundation of society for thousands of years be changed to accommodate their alternate lifestyle choice.

I have to ask, people live together without legal benefits of any kind, they don't believe in marriage or pieces of paper that certify you are joined as one.  Why, if you are so secure in your identity as a gay person and in love, why do you need the sanction of the state to verify your love or union? 

Why must the definition of marriage, which has a certain a particular meaning be erased to encompass a relationship that does not constitute the union of man to woman for the propagation of the species and the continuation of the human race. 

There is a fundamental definition of marriage that should never be altered.  I respect Gay people and their right to have a civil union.  I don't think that their unions should ever be called marriage.  This is more relativism, there are things that should remain unchanged especially when the majority of the people support the traditional definition of marriage.

 

user profile pic

acompanioninthetardis | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted May 28, 2014 at 2:12 AM (Answer #50)

dislike 1 like

Since you asked for my opinion i'm going to say it right out. if were living in a place that prevents 2 people, 2 human beings in love from getting married, then we are not free. It's like taking blue and pink multivitamins, and you know you have to take two but you're only allowed to take one blue and one pink, if you take 2 blues or 2 pinks, you get arrested. Either way there still good for you. 

user profile pic

amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 14, 2008 at 12:59 PM (Answer #2)

dislike 0 like

I don't understand your point about California...the majority wins any vote.  Are you saying the majority in California swayed the nation's results?  In that case, I'm surprised that anyone in California voted against gay marriage, but not surprised that the majority of other states did.

At any rate, the issue of gay marriage is a sticky one.  I have many friends who are gay, and I love them all.  However, my religion expressly states that gay relationships are sinful and should not be allowed.  On the other hand, as a humanist, it seems only fair that gay individuals should be able to live and love monogamously as heterosexuals do.  They should be able to buy homes and other large investment items together without the risk of losing everything should the partner die due to family squabbles over property rights. 

 

user profile pic

inga | Elementary School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 26, 2008 at 6:37 PM (Answer #13)

dislike 0 like
Gay Marriage

Do we really live in a free nation, when in 2008 we still have a majority of the citizen body in CALIFORNIA of all places voting against gay marriage?  What are your thoughts and opinions on whether you are for or against gay marriage?

The people voted, that my friend is freedom. Majority rule is true freedom, the majority should not inhibit theier values and religion, because it bothers the minority. Free to be you and me... not free to shove me and my ideals down your throat because I want to feel ok with myself.  

Move on, the world is falling apart, children are being sold into slavery, people are starving, going with out medical attention for lack of money, all this right here in America.  And all you are worried about is feeling ok about being Gay. It's ok, it's also ok that others aren't ok with it, you will never get everyone to like you no matter who you are.  That is the way life is.  Move beyond your selfish indulgence, how can you make a difference in the world, not just in your own little life?

user profile pic

inga | Elementary School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 28, 2008 at 12:45 PM (Answer #14)

dislike 0 like

Thank you response #4, that is exactly what I am talking about.  How can we say we are a country of freedom and a country of free religion, but we deny someone the right to marry based on the majority of religious values in our country?  This is  not right at all, and I agree with the many people protesting this proposition in California.  In this country, we are letting the religious majority rule, and that is plain unconstitutional!

How do you know the voters are religious? Perhaps they just have different values than you do?  I don't remember marking any religious box when I voted.  Wheather religion plays a part as people's personal convictions, morals and values is besides the point.  These very same "relgious" people also voted for a President that believes in womens right to choose.  How religious is that?  Voters come in all shapes and sizes and colors.  The Democrats vote for Obama yet they voted yes on Prop 8.  What statement are they making? Now MALDEF and NAACP are fighting what their very members voted for.  What happened to the democratic process? They mock our constitution and it's system.  Now we as taxpayers get to pay for that as well. 

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 1, 2008 at 9:22 AM (Answer #15)

dislike 0 like

Let me take the microscope off of California for a moment. Here in Florida, we said yes to Amendment 2, which established marriage as the union of one man to one woman. A majority of our voters believe that the definition of marriage should be worded in such a way.

Those who voted in favor of the amendment came from a broad spectrum of backgrounds, ethnicities, and belief systems, yet they all had a single thing in common: Their civic conscience told them on election day that the sanctity of heterosexual marriage's lifetime commitment should be guarded. I agree.

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 1, 2008 at 9:51 AM (Answer #16)

dislike 0 like

"What is democracy but the [wishes] of the majority?" Linda-Allen

This is one of the MASSIVE misunderstandings of modern democracy. Liberal Democracy should NOT provide the majority with their desires if those desires impinge upon the freedoms of a minority.

By your argument Linda, if everybody voted in favour of exterminating the Jews, then it's OK because the majority approved. There are some things that are not OK, even if the majority wants them. And squashing the rights of the less powerful is the classic example. Gay people should have access to EXACTLY the same advantages.

The electorate constantly proves itself incapable of understanding the rules of democracy. The elctorate prefers movie-stars to calm people who have all the facts and experience. The electorate re-elected George Bush at the 2004 election despite him creating Guantanamo Bay, a clearly radical and dangerous breach of basic legal practice. The Electorate fails to understand that it may not discard the basic concepts of Liberalism, which extremely clever people have been honing for millenia! Mob rule is not democracy.

If some are allowed a certain freedom, then it must be available to all. All may marry or none may. This is simple and clear.

Claiming your desire for injustice is based on 'religious faith' has never been an acceptable excuse for injustice.

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 1, 2008 at 11:22 AM (Answer #17)

dislike 0 like

"What is democracy but the [wishes] of the majority?" Linda-Allen

This is one of the MASSIVE misunderstandings of modern democracy. Liberal Democracy should NOT provide the majority with their desires if those desires impinge upon the freedoms of a minority.

By your argument Linda, if everybody voted in favour of exterminating the Jews, then it's OK because the majority approved. There are some things that are not OK, even if the majority wants them. And squashing the rights of the less powerful is the classic example. Gay people should have access to EXACTLY the same advantages.

The electorate constantly proves itself incapable of understanding the rules of democracy. The elctorate prefers movie-stars to calm people who have all the facts and experience. The electorate re-elected George Bush at the 2004 election despite him creating Guantanamo Bay, a clearly radical and dangerous breach of basic legal practice. The Electorate fails to understand that it may not discard the basic concepts of Liberalism, which extremely clever people have been honing for millenia! Mob rule is not democracy.

If some are allowed a certain freedom, then it must be available to all. All may marry or none may. This is simple and clear.

Claiming your desire for injustice is based on 'religious faith' has never been an acceptable excuse for injustice.

Mob rule is not democracy.

I concur. One needs only look at events like the Rodney King riots or the looting after 9/11 to realize the contrast between mob rule and true democracy. However, the occasional voice of the outspoken minority is necessary to ensure what we would call democracy. For instance, where would we be without acts like the Boston Tea Party (mob rule), the civil rights movement (mob rule), or union strikes (mob rule)? The homosexual community was not the oppressed minority victim here; the mainstream, modern, American middle-class family was, and Prop 8 and Amendment 2 helped balance the scales, much like a labor strike or the passive resistance used in the sixties. Just because these acts are a bit more "official" than the radical movements of our past doesn't make them any less valid or effective.  

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 2, 2008 at 1:52 AM (Answer #18)

dislike 0 like

Dissent and protest are not, per se, mob rule. Neither is the majority's opinion. I would describe Mob Rule to be when a group uses their voice to demand something that is illiberal and oppressive.

Ghandi and his movement were not 'mob rule' because they wanted freedom and justice.

Martin Luther King was not 'whipping up the mob' he was struggling for his constitutional rights.

But if you lead a protest march calling for the return of slavery... you're a mob, because you are attempting to deny others freedom and pervert liberal democracy.

Similarly, the majority using the ballot box to deny homosexuals an advantage that the majority awards to itself; this is mob rule.

Let's take an exagerrated example to make the point... If my religion said "it's OK for me to keep sex-slaves as long as they were members of a different religion", then the law would not respect my beliefs, obviously, because they are illegal. The Church MUST respect the law. I would not be able to say, "but my religion says I can..." because when  religion and the law disagree, The Law Wins Everytime. That is one of the absolute bedrock rules of Liberal Democracy. And the Law says you may not oppress minorities, even if your religion wants to.

If non-gays can marry and take certain social and financial advantages from marriage, Gays may not be excluded. "Illiberal Religious Doctrine" is irrelevant. The Law says we are all equal. This is America. 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 2, 2008 at 8:28 AM (Answer #20)

dislike 0 like

American is a Liberal Democracy. This is far from a 'drastic conclusion'. The American Public seems terrified of the word 'Liberal', but constantly eulogises about the virtues of their personal 'Liberty', which is synonymus with that most American word, "Freedom". This another example of the electorate failing to make themselves aware of their role in a democracy. Be that as it may, they are fortunate enough to live in a liberal democracy.

And your definition of democracy implies there are no limits to the voters desires. I ask you this... If 51% of the Florida electorate voted in favour of the re-introduction of slavery, would the administration be obliged to proceed with a pro-slavery policy and grant the electorate their wish. If not, why not?

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 2, 2008 at 8:29 AM (Answer #19)

dislike 0 like

Dissent and protest are not, per se, mob rule. Neither is the majority's opinion. I would describe Mob Rule to be when a group uses their voice to demand something that is illiberal and oppressive.

Ghandi and his movement were not 'mob rule' because they wanted freedom and justice.

Martin Luther King was not 'whipping up the mob' he was struggling for his constitutional rights.

But if you lead a protest march calling for the return of slavery... you're a mob, because you are attempting to deny others freedom and pervert liberal democracy.

Similarly, the majority using the ballot box to deny homosexuals an advantage that the majority awards to itself; this is mob rule.

Let's take an exagerrated example to make the point... If my religion said "it's OK for me to keep sex-slaves as long as they were members of a different religion", then the law would not respect my beliefs, obviously, because they are illegal. The Church MUST respect the law. I would not be able to say, "but my religion says I can..." because when  religion and the law disagree, The Law Wins Everytime. That is one of the absolute bedrock rules of Liberal Democracy. And the Law says you may not oppress minorities, even if your religion wants to.

If non-gays can marry and take certain social and financial advantages from marriage, Gays may not be excluded. "Illiberal Religious Doctrine" is irrelevant. The Law says we are all equal. This is America. 

I agree to disagree. Your perception of what constitutes mob rule is intriguing, skewed though it may be. And while I'm not exactly certain what has led your views to the drastic conclusion that the US is a "liberal democracy," I do know that we are, in fact, a democratic republic, meaning our elected officials voice our individidual opinions. One person, one vote. In this case, both in Florida and California, the people's voice was heard loud and clear. It is up to us now to respect these decisions.

I may not approve of voters' election of Barack Obama, for instance, but I will still respect his office. Similarly, Americans have the innate obligation to respect the legislative decisions made by our voting body. Without it, we would no longer be the great country we are today. You're right; this is America.   

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 2, 2008 at 9:46 AM (Answer #21)

dislike 0 like

Wow; this seems to happen in every discussion group no matter what the topic -- Someone starts talking about a vaguely-related matter close to the topic at hand, and suddenly we're all chasing proverbial rabbits. Rather than engage in meaningless diatribe about the accurate defintion of the word "liberal," I will take this opportunity instead to direct the reader to a wonderful website about the gay marriage debate: http://www.narth.com

The hard, factual data you see presented here will enlighten you as to the numerous and valid reasons why gay marriage should never happen, period. This is not some extremist site, but rather, a scientifically-based collection of information and statistics that will serve to verify a single point -- Any marriage outside the boundaries of heterosexuality is not only ill-advised, but also doomed from its outset. With that in mind, there exists no point in defending an institution that is inevitably bound to fail. 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 2, 2008 at 10:15 AM (Answer #23)

dislike 0 like

@21 "This [website] is ... a scientifically-based collection of information and statistics that will serve to verify a single point -- Any marriage outside the boundaries of heterosexuality is not only ill-advised, but also doomed from its outset. With that in mind, there exists no point in defending an institution that is inevitably bound to fail."engtchr5

What!!!??? The more time I spend at this site the more APPALLED I am at how outrageously right-wing many people's views are here. (I have been to the website you mention) So Gays are 'ill', are they. That's your answer, is it? You do realise that the last group of people to catergorise homosexuals as mentally ill and then limit their freedom were THE NAZIS!!!

So what are you going to do with all these 'ill' members of American society, enqtchr5?

That site you link to is pure poison. Hitler would have loved it.

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 2, 2008 at 10:15 AM (Answer #22)

dislike 0 like

@21 your reply is an utter dodge of the issue - viz: may the majority dictate to a minority if it so wishes? That is the crux of this matter. It is not off topic whatsoever.

You say you wish to repress the right of homosexuals to get married and justify it by saying it is what the majority wants.

I ask you again - In a (liberal) democracy, do you believe that if the majority desire something, no matter what that is, they should be allowed to have it? Or do the wishes of the majority have some boundaries?

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 2, 2008 at 10:39 AM (Answer #24)

dislike 0 like

And what a surprise... a couple of minutes research quickly turns up the fact that your 'scientific' NARTH group is affiliated to evangelical Right-Wing Christian Groups and is an active member in religious issues (strange how they don't put that at the top of their 'science' website).

Your "Scientists" that claim they can cure homosexuality have a pre-research desire for religiously inspired, social conservatism. They are reverse engineers looking for evidence to their fixed answers.

user profile pic

james0tucson | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted December 2, 2008 at 10:57 AM (Answer #25)

dislike 0 like

@21 "This [website] is ... a scientifically-based collection of information and statistics that will serve to verify a single point -- Any marriage outside the boundaries of heterosexuality is not only ill-advised, but also doomed from its outset. With that in mind, there exists no point in defending an institution that is inevitably bound to fail."engtchr5

What!!!??? The more time I spend at this site the more APPALLED I am at how outrageously right-wing many people's views are here. (I have been to the website you mention) So Gays are 'ill', are they. That's your answer, is it? You do realise that the last group of people to catergorise homosexuals as mentally ill and then limit their freedom were THE NAZIS!!!

So what are you going to do with all these 'ill' members of American society, enqtchr5?

That site you link to is pure poison. Hitler would have loved it.

 "You do realise that the last group of people to catergorise homosexuals as mentally ill and then limit their freedom were THE NAZIS!!!"

Point of information; the American Psychological Association did so as recently as 1975, and in many countries is still considered either a mental illness or a crime, or both.  

Next time you are in Jamaica, consider that (only male) homosexuality is a crime that carries a sentence of 10 years of hard labor.

Let's don't even mention Yemen, let alone Saudi Arabia (punishment is death by flogging), or Bangladesh or our good friend Somalia (death penalty!) 

Gay couples actually have dire considerations to make when choosing exotic travel destinations.  Next time you and your lover book a cruise, will you check the laws in all the ports you will be sailing into?   Going to that liberal paradise Belize?  Ten years to life.  Tropical storm forces your ship to dock in Antigua or Barbuda?  Fifteen years!

I'm sure this is all music to "21's" ears, of course.

user profile pic

noslenbocaj | Student, College Freshman | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted December 2, 2008 at 11:11 PM (Answer #26)

dislike 0 like

I think that gay marriage is perfectly acceptable in modern society especially in the U.S. It's not right to rob people of their happiness because of their sexual orientation. What offends most people about gay marriage is that it contradicts with the "standard" definition of union between a man and a woman as defined in the bible. But here in the U.S. with so called separation of church and state how can we tell people they are not allowed to marry because it goes against the bible? We shouldn't be able to and as defined in the constitution the citizens of the United States of American are entitled to their own life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 3, 2008 at 1:46 AM (Answer #27)

dislike 0 like

@26. Well Said. 'The Law' trumps 'The Bible' everytime, without discussion or appeal. The Bible is niether a political, legal nor scientific publication. It has no legitimate claim as a 'cornerstone of American Democracy'. Because, interestingly, you often here Christians say, "Christianity is not a democracy, Christ is a king, you don't vote, you follow." etc. I have heard many Christians say this. So I don't see how the Bible can be appropriate to American democratic politics because Christians are unwilling to negotiate over the wording in the bible.

The Bible is not available for the insertion of precedents, clarifications, modernisations and eliminations and has never been passed by Government as American Law. So it is irrelevant to The Legal Profession.

Christians may not interfere when an entirely separate social group attempts to gain legal access to priviledges which are available to other members of society. This has nothing to do with Christians. They have no legal right to block the freedoms of others. I don't want to be too rude, but really, in this matter Christians should mind their own business. They have no jurisdiction over homosexuals. (In fact, they have no jurisdiction at all.)

user profile pic

bobthebuckyfish | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted December 3, 2008 at 3:05 PM (Answer #28)

dislike 0 like

I think that one must ask oneself, "Was this what the founding fathers had in mind when they spoke for the freedom of Americans?" You must remeber that the reason people settled in America in the seventeenth century was so that they could worship God. The vast majority of our founding fathers were devout Christians. The Bible clearly states that Homosexuality is wrong, so if our founding fathers were confronted with this issue, they would have acted upon what the Bible said. The legalization of gay marriage would go diectly against the morals on which this country was built upon.

user profile pic

omni | College Teacher | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted December 3, 2008 at 5:04 PM (Answer #29)

dislike 0 like

I think that one must ask oneself, "Was this what the founding fathers had in mind when they spoke for the freedom of Americans?" You must remeber that the reason people settled in America in the seventeenth century was so that they could worship God. The vast majority of our founding fathers were devout Christians. The Bible clearly states that Homosexuality is wrong, so if our founding fathers were confronted with this issue, they would have acted upon what the Bible said. The legalization of gay marriage would go diectly against the morals on which this country was built upon.

The founders put what they thought should govern the country into the constitution. The constitution has very little to do with God or Christianity and is a blueprint for a government that has freedom of religion. Freedom of religion means that the Government cannot tell Churches what to do, but also that the Churches cannot tell the Government what to do. 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 4, 2008 at 2:49 AM (Answer #30)

dislike 0 like

@28 The 'founding fathers' were quite extreme protestants who fled a catholic crackdown in England. They did NOT want to found America. They wanted a religious society of protestants only. I don't want to disparage fond historical beliefs, but they were a bumbling group of provincial zealots. They did not create America. America was forged during the civil war with democratic ideals taken from the French Enlightenment at it's core.

Jefferson is the father of America. Not those dim little Lincolnshire merchants, who remembered to pack bibles and combs and starched collars for their New World Order, but forgot spades and texts on agriculture and medicine. (If there are 'founding fathers' from Plymouth Rock, it is The Native Americans who saved and fed the starving, incompetent English settlers.)

America BEGAN with the declaration of independence. The heart of America's constitution is that EVERYONE is EQUAL. That is the cornerstone of America.

SO, HERE'S THE DEAL; I will tolerate your religious beliefs, however ridiculous they may appear to me, becuase you are free to believe them. In turn, DON'T force them on others. I repeat, loudly and clearly; Your religious beliefs are NOT ratified by the state. Your particular religion shelters, with many others, in the shadow of The Constitution. BUT... The Constitution guarantees all Americans protection from your oft-time barbarous religion.

cont... 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 4, 2008 at 3:17 AM (Answer #31)

dislike 0 like

cont... @28 Omni said "The Bible clearly states that Homosexuality is wrong, so if our founding fathers were confronted with this issue, they would have acted upon what the Bible said. The legalization of gay marriage would go diectly against the morals on which this country was built upon."

I wish I could say in words how appalling I find your statement. It demonstrates a total lack of understanding about what America is. I bet you would go racing to The Constitution if your religion was threatened with intolerance. You would cite every humanistic, democratic principle and legal right that has been granted to you by tolerant democratic legislation. Be carful what you wish for Omni... your desire for undemocratic oppression could back-fire on you. If you try to oppress peoples' freedom because of what it says in a unsanctioned book, you may find people unwilling to tolerate your aggressive superstitions (which is all they appear to be to me) There is NOTHING in this country's legislature that grants the Bible authority. NOTHING! And there is clear legislature that restricts Christian's desire to enforce their homophobia.

The Founding Fathers were not Americans. They were English settlers.  What you think they thought means Zip. I find nothing in the constitution which gives your Bible authority. So please take it back to the church, where it belongs, and leave it there. This is a secular democracy.

user profile pic

bobthebuckyfish | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted December 5, 2008 at 9:26 AM (Answer #32)

dislike 0 like

Homosexuality is an obvious sign in America's moral decline. Think back one hundred years ago. Homosexuality didn't exist. It basically didn't exist up to thirty years ago, now all of a sudden people are rushing to defend it. As the our country's downward spiral continues, who knows what could be next. Increased tolerance towards murders? Rapes?  You say that people should be able to legally fulfill their sexual desires through Homosexuality, why not through rapes? Increased tolerance means increased crime. Though people aren't willing to accept it, the Bible is very clear about this. You may call me closed minded by not accepting gay rights, what about your lack of respect towards the Bible and what it stands for. You are very quick to condemn the Bible as being outdated and unapplicable to us. Sounds closed-minded to me. You say that Christianity would run to the constitution if threatened. Perhaps it is because that whether you like it or not, Christianity was extremely common among the people who built this country. This country was founded with Biblical principles. America has become the greatest power in the history of the earth. We must have been doing something right. Then, wouldn't you know it, as soon as the morality begins to slip, our country becomes involved in unwanted wars, the economy is in shambles, and crime is at an unseen level. Do you catch a pattern?

user profile pic

jhatzis99 | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 7, 2008 at 12:05 PM (Answer #33)

dislike 0 like

I'm considering asking for a refund on my subscription to enotes based on this post. Homosexuality did not exist 30 years ago???? Were you born in a barn? Homosexuality has existed since the beginning of time! Depending on the era, homosexuality was accepted or driven underground. And how do you make the logical leap equating homosexuality and rape? Unbelievable. 

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 8, 2008 at 2:51 AM (Answer #34)

dislike 0 like

@32 - Your reply is so outrageous that I think it must be a joke. It is full of contradictions, basic errors and false conclusions. It looks like a joke. But maybe you're not joking. Maybe you're just a kid trying to figure things out. So here's a little lesson in logic.

To make a Logical conclusion you need Facts. Be sure those facts are right or your conclusion won't be. Your conclusions must not 'jump' away from the facts.

If I notice, "It is Monday and it is sunny", I'd be a fool to jump to the conclusion... "All Mondays are sunny."

Lets look at what you wrote...

  1. Think back one hundred years ago. Homosexuality didn't exist.
  2. You say that people should be able to legally fulfill their sexual desires through Homosexuality, why not through rapes?

From 1) You noticed that 100 years ago Americans didn't talk about homosexaulity, so you concluded... "Homosexuality didn't exist." That is a massive 'jump'. Your conclusion is wrong.

From 2) You say, "if homosexuality is allowed, then soon we'll allow rape". This is a very false conclusion. Somebody has told you this theory. The idea is to emotionally link homosexuality with rape. You provide no facts to support your claim. This statement, "If we tolerate Christianity, then soon we'll tolerate religious murder." has exactly the same logical value as yours. Your claim is extremely dangerous.

cont...

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 8, 2008 at 5:16 AM (Answer #35)

dislike 0 like

3) (you said) This country was founded with Biblical principles.

This is not a fact. The Constitution does not use the Bible as its foundation. Far from it, in fact, The Constitution specifies the seperation of church and state. The Constitution specifically disregards The Bible. As long as they do not break the law, Americans are free to believe, but it is a private belief and not legally relevant. Your conclusion that America is based on The Bible is factually wrong.

4)You said, "America has become the greatest power in the history of the earth. We must have been doing something right. Then as soon as the morality begins to slip, our country becomes involved in unwanted wars, the economy is in shambles, and crime is at an unseen level. Do you catch a pattern?"

Here you take facts of recent unBiblical morality and conclude they are the reason for the world's troubles with no explanation of how the two are linked. You ask, "do you catch a pattern?" in other words, you are asking, "can't you see the obvious conclusion?"

I promise you, the only pattern I can see is your inability to make logical conclusions based on provable facts.

How is 'immoral' activity responsible for the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? Most people agree that the wars were purposefully started by George Bush, (a devout Christian but not a homosexual). Your conclusion is illogical.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Logic

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted December 8, 2008 at 8:45 AM (Answer #36)

dislike 0 like

I have resolved to stop posting in academically-unrelated discussion groups like this one. These fruitless and frivolous conversations do not serve to enhance anyone's education or knowledge, but rather, only instigate verbal attacks and unprofessionalism in the name of so-called "debate."

As my parting gift, however, allow me to give posters here insight as to our country's founding fathers and their religious leanings. Visit the link below, and you'll see what I mean:

http://www.adherents.com/gov/Founding_Fathers_Religion.html

Look at the included chart, in particular. To state that our country had no religious influence in its foundation is to deny history.

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 8, 2008 at 9:00 AM (Answer #37)

dislike 0 like

The religious background of the founding fathers is irrelevant and they all willingly signed a document that clearly declared their religion to be merely a private matter. How many times do certain Christians need to be told?... American is NOT a formally Christian country and Christian values, where in disagreement with the values of the state, are completely and utterly powerless...

This is the Land of the Free, not The Land of The Christians.

 

(from wikipedia) The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment prohibits the establishment of a national religion by the Congress or the preference of one religion over another, or religion over non-religion. Originally, the First Amendment only applied to the federal government. Subsequently, under the incorporation doctrine, certain selected provisions were applied to states. It was not, however, until the middle and later years of the twentieth century that the Supreme Court began to interpret the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses in such a manner as to restrict the promotion of religion by state governments. For example, in the Board of Education of Kiryas Joel Village School District v. Grumet, 512 U.S. 687 (1994), Justice David Souter, writing for the majority, concluded that "government should not prefer one religion to another, or religion to irreligion".

user profile pic

rlendensky | Student, College Freshman | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted December 8, 2008 at 3:15 PM (Answer #38)

dislike 0 like

Fortunately moral standards are evolving and more and more states are allowing gay marriage, I believe the number is up around ten now. Certainly the government should honor homosexual marriage and heterosexual marriage alike (as omni said in post number 9) however it should also be up to the church whether they want to sanction marriage between two members of the same gender. As far as government is concerned, all men (now evolved to people) are created equal and that gives all people the right to marriage, regardless of sexual orientation. Unfortunately the church has not been so tolerant, arguing that homosexuality is wrong, but then again the establishment clause says that there shall be no establishment of religion, therefore the government cannot disallow gay marriage simply on the grounds that it is against religious ideals.

user profile pic

normalgirl | Student | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted December 8, 2008 at 3:19 PM (Answer #39)

dislike 0 like

Thank You, Rlendensky! I wish there were more like you! :-)

user profile pic

sostrowski | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted December 8, 2008 at 7:23 PM (Answer #40)

dislike 0 like

America is as free a nation as you get right now in our world.  While I do agree with some previous posts that we have the freedom to vote 'no' on certain issues, like Proposition 8 in California, I do find it extremely unfortunate that some people that live in America still aren't afforded the same free rights as the rest of us. 

I have friends and family members that are part of the gay population, and I have fully come to realize that being gay is not a choice, but an inherent part to someone that they cannot control.  It's like a characteristic that you cannot change about yourself, and that you shouldn't have to because it's a part of who you are and people should come to respect that.

Because I realize that being gay is not a choice, I believe that it is very unfortunate that gay people are not able to show their commitment and love to one another by becoming legally (and in many cases, spiritually as well) connected to one another. I think that our country has a long way to go for us to be a truly free country.  If we are truly free and equal, the people that live in this country would have the same marital rights as each other, no matter what their sexual orientation.

user profile pic

Jen Sambdman | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

Posted December 8, 2008 at 7:40 PM (Answer #41)

dislike 0 like

People are entitled to their own opinion. That is what makes this country great. Obviously, more people in California (and other states as well) have the opinion that gays and lesbians shouldn't marry legally. This is why it is not legal in all states. The question of it being a moral (moral generally a direct result of religion) or a legal issue is pretty much the biggest factor of the debate. Most people who uphold the Bible take it literally when it says "A man should not lay with another man" while people who uphold a legal moral code see it as a question of legal benefits for the partner if something happens to the other. You then have the question of just the title itself; there is an air to the word "married" that implies a serious and more permanent definition to the relationship. The debate generally stems from these two very different viewpoints and that is where it gets so heated and controversial. Being able to have this dialogue without fear of repercussion is what DOES make this country really free.

user profile pic

adramey | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted December 9, 2008 at 3:45 PM (Answer #42)

dislike 0 like

I believe that since the US considers itself to be a free nation, gay marriage should be allowed. Many people vote against it because of religious values, but religion and politics are in two seperate categories. If gay couples are aware of all the criticism they will receive and still want to be together, then so be it. They shouldn't be treated any differently than straight people because we are all people and deserve to be treated equally.

user profile pic

crow-boy | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted December 11, 2008 at 12:50 PM (Answer #43)

dislike 0 like

Gay marriage is against many religions, and that's why many people vote against it.  Votes in this case, however, seem to make little sense seeing as how this is hardly a separation of church and state.  People's personal lives and preferences, as long as they are not hurting anyone, should be up to them, and not what everyone else thinks.

user profile pic

mauricemo | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 17, 2008 at 12:31 PM (Answer #44)

dislike 0 like

People are entitled to their own opinion. That is what makes this country great. Obviously, more people in California (and other states as well) have the opinion that gays and lesbians shouldn't marry legally. This is why it is not legal in all states. The question of it being a moral (moral generally a direct result of religion) or a legal issue is pretty much the biggest factor of the debate. Most people who uphold the Bible take it literally when it says "A man should not lay with another man" while people who uphold a legal moral code see it as a question of legal benefits for the partner if something happens to the other. You then have the question of just the title itself; there is an air to the word "married" that implies a serious and more permanent definition to the relationship. The debate generally stems from these two very different viewpoints and that is where it gets so heated and controversial. Being able to have this dialogue without fear of repercussion is what DOES make this country really free.

To me the religious opponents of gay marriage would have more credence if they held every offense to their religion with the same level of disapproval. I believe there is only one offense in Christrianity that is held above all others (in God's eyes) and that is putting another before God. So if known adulteres were greeted with picket signs, for example, the argument would be somewhat more legitimate. Seems the God they serve would be just as upset about the divorce rate of heterosexuals as He is about gay marriage. I think when you have a personal relationship with God and attempt to earnestly follow His teachings to live your own life, you have little time to worry about anyone else's.

user profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted December 18, 2008 at 1:32 AM (Answer #45)

dislike 0 like

@44 absolutely! Isn't it strange that out of the hundreds of biblical prohibitions and tenets, the one that causes the most Christian anger and focus is not a 'ten commandment' or an important lesson by Jesus. No, it's gay marriage and birth control.

Where was the 'Million Christian March' protesting against the killing in Iraq? Where are the huge angry Christian demonstrations high-lighting the obscene inequality of America's super-rich and Africa's dying, hungry children? I thought Jesus preached love and inclusion. I thought Jesus said stuff about, "what you do to the least of these..."

I don't remember reading in The Bible that Jesus made a big placard which said, "Gays Go To Hell" and he marched through Jerusalem, ignoring the beggars and the sick, shouting, "Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve! No Gay Marriage!"

 

user profile pic

enotechris | College Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted December 4, 2009 at 8:28 AM (Answer #46)

dislike 0 like

The problem is that the state is defining marriage, and granting rights that people already possess.  By what authority does any state do so? Isn't marriage, whatever the flavor, a religious institution, not a secular one?

And the state is dictating how your property may be distributed.  And now other parts of government are stating that the "will of the people" is whim.   I think psychologists call this "projection..."  It appears the state bases its decisions on whim and disregards the will of the people.

You should marry whomever you choose, and transfer your property however you choose, with no government involvement.  Laws should be enacted to preserve that, because that, in principle, is acting like a free American.  Whatever the churches have to say about it, well, that's their business. You're free to join them or not, and either abide or reject their principles.

user profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 16, 2010 at 2:31 AM (Answer #47)

dislike 0 like

It is always a tricky one when we talk of "freedom" and where we place the boundary lines for this. Of course, one man's idea of freedom is going to be very different from another man's and care is needed to ensure that allowing one man to exercise his freedom does not impinge on other people. I am not saying that gay marriage necessarily does this, but it is a massive issue.

user profile pic

Wiggin42 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) Valedictorian

Posted May 28, 2014 at 7:58 PM (Answer #51)

dislike 0 like

I am personally opposed to gay marriage based on religious grounds. However, I don't think that is reason enough to impose a ban on the national level. I also believe in upholding the separation of Church and State so a law for gay marriage doesn't mean religious institutions have to marry gay people.

There are far more pressing issues to deal with today than gay marriage which in fact is a non-issue. 

user profile pic

parama9000 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted May 29, 2014 at 1:59 PM (Answer #52)

dislike 0 like

In response, gay marriage is a pressing issue. In fact, Wiggins, that last statement shows a certain degree of bias.

The arguments for/against marriage are, and have always been centered on religion, and also the definition of marriage- that is, a union between a man and a woman.

However, just as people can vote against marriage, people do also have the freedom to press for gay marriage. 

Laws are now being rolled out since the Supreme Court modified the definition of marriage due to a ruling. 

On a side note, there are also many questions, such as: why in the first place do we need to legalize gay marriage? Is it for the protection of their assets legally? If so, it should not be, in that sense, considered as marriage per se.

However, there has been overwhelming evidence that does not favor gay marriage.

For example, the adopted children of gay couples tend to suffer major identity crises. More importantly, the arguments for pro-gay marriage have also been used for arguing bestiality and polygamy-so it would be very hard to draw a fine line should gay marriage get fully legalized and recognized, as the concept of gay marriage and bestiality and/or polygamy share quite a bit of similarity.

Hence, until that fine line can ever be drawn, I believe that there will be progress for legalizing gay marriage, but a slow one.

Also, due to the evidence above, I am personally against gay marriage as it will bring about social issues.

I have included a link below if you wish to find out more on the state definition of gay marriage.

Sources:

user profile pic

rachellopez | TA , Grade 12 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted May 30, 2014 at 10:58 PM (Answer #53)

dislike 0 like

The United States is a free country, we have a lot of rights that other countries do not. However I feel that if we can't allow two people who love each other and want to be together, that is taking away some freedom. I support gay marriage and it shouldn't matter if it is a man and a women, two men, or two women who want to get married; it is their right to do so. Now some states are beginning to allow same sex marriage which I think is great. That's just my opinion though.

user profile pic

zumba96 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) Valedictorian

Posted May 31, 2014 at 6:11 PM (Answer #54)

dislike 0 like

I am for gay marriage because honestly it is their life why should other be affected by who they love and what they love. It's not like gay people are offending you and judging you because you are straight. Plus all those people who think God hates gays. That's a seriously dumb idea which they obviously used no thought whatsoever. If God hated gays would he really make them. God makes people of all race and different gender and those who love people of the same gender. What's the big deal. Truly it doesn't matter who you love whether they are a boy or girl, as long as you love them for who you are. People need to open their minds this is the 21st century. One of my best friends is gay and when I first moved he helped me not be so shy my first day and school and he's super popular and awesome. Nothing is wrong with gay people. They are who they are. GAY MARRIAGE SHOULD BE LEGAL IN ALL STATES

user profile pic

maria-vivanco | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted May 31, 2014 at 9:07 PM (Answer #55)

dislike 0 like

By denying someone the right to marry. it is stripping them away from their own rights. This is making them seem inferior to others. The United States is supposedly a free nation; how are we are free nation, one that supposedly embraces difference and  provides equal rights for all when we are denying our own citzens the right to marry? Many people reject the institution of gay marriage for various reasons, mostly relgious and moral. This influence is put on to the government because their people don't want it to be legalized. Let me make a comparisons. Prior to the civil war, and during, the Southern states believed that slavery should be legal because it was natural and it was normal to have a white man own a black man as a slave. Abolishing slavery was a problem that America had because of economic and social problems. The root of the problem was personal, the Southerners weren't going to allow it. Segregation was also a personal problem because people didn't want to give the blacks the same rights as them. I make this comparison because the problem faced with gay marriage is personal to some. There is no ecomomic problems regarding the issue like slavery had but it did include social and religious problems. Denying gay Americans to be married under law is like not allowing black citzens share facilities with white men. Gay marriage should be accepted because is based out of love and why wouldn't should it be not legalized? Because it is unnatural? Homosexuality is found in over 450 species, however homophobia is found in one specie. Because it will ruin the tradititional meaning of marriage? The actual 'traditional marriage' was a woman's father signing over ownership of her to the husband that he has picked out. Thank god we have moved on from such outdated 'traditions', right?

user profile pic

ayl0124 | Student, Grade 12 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted June 2, 2014 at 6:12 PM (Answer #56)

dislike 0 like

I am personally against gay marriage in the social aspect, but I don't agree that the government should have a say on marriage. Many of the reasons against gay marriage is religious. The 1st Amendment promises citizens the freedom of religion. The entire population should not be subjected to a certain method of thought because the majority of the United States is religious. Through the freedom of religion, we also have the freedom not to belief in anything.

user profile pic

clyoon | Student, Grade 12 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted August 15, 2014 at 7:37 PM (Answer #57)

dislike 0 like

When it comes to being a free nation, I do not think that America is a free nation yet. It would take a lot for us to become a free country. 

But when it comes to my thoughts on gay marriage, I personally am against it because I believe humans were not designed to be homosexual. Despite all the DNA arguments and whatnot, I have also seen many other scientific explanations on how DNA changes as we live and I have listened to scientists say that the DNA argument is not as valid as many people believe it to be. There are many things in the science world that have been covered up to advocate that homosexuality is normal. But that's a whole different argument and discussion in itself.

Many people seem to associate the homosexuality controversey with Christianity and other religions against gay marriage. But I also know many people who are athiest or agnostic and are against gay marriage as well. This is a very tricky and complex subject because of all the arguments on both sides and also all the hidden ones. 

user profile pic

clyoon | Student, Grade 12 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted August 15, 2014 at 7:40 PM (Answer #58)

dislike 0 like

Oh and side note just in case anyone wonders about what God thinks of gays and gay marriage (this is coming from a Christian):

God does not hate gays. God loves all people, for He created them. But He does hate homosexuality, the sin. "Hate the sin, not the sinner." 

It's just like when our friends or parents lie to us. We don't hate them. But we do hate their lies. 

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes