Gay MarriageDo 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...

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?

56 Answers | Add Yours

pmiranda2857's profile pic

Posted on

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.

 

kwoo1213's profile pic

Posted on

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. 

linda-allen's profile pic

Posted on

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"?

linda-allen's profile pic

Posted on

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?

alohaspirit's profile pic

Posted on

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!

linda-allen's profile pic

Posted on

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.

accessteacher's profile pic

Posted on

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.

enotechris's profile pic

Posted on

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.

jennyrocks's profile pic

Posted on

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.

sostrowski's profile pic

Posted on

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.

engtchr5's profile pic

Posted on

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.

james0tucson's profile pic

Posted on

@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.

engtchr5's profile pic

Posted on

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. 

engtchr5's profile pic

Posted on

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.   

engtchr5's profile pic

Posted on

"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.  

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