Tolerance, and why I support Proposition 8

I would like to think that I am a fairly tolerant person. When some of my friends left the Church in middle school and high school and started drinking and smoking, we stayed friends. I made an effort to be kind to those kids everyone else picked on, having been that kid myself. I had several boys fall in love with me simply because I was the only girl who had ever been nice to them. (Sometimes, being nice and kind has its odd consequences 😉 ) I got picked on a lot in school; I wore glasses, had frizzy curly hair, sang in the choir, was bad at sports, and I was Mormon. Especially because I was Mormon. It still amazes me how many of the pastors in the area I grew up in spent most of their time preaching to their youth about the evil Mormons, instead of on things like abstinence, not taking the name of the Lord in vain, and reading the scriptures. I had friends joke about tarring and feathering Mormons for fun. I watched people march around outside my chapel with signs saying things like “enter here for the gateway to Hell.” Having grown up with people being intolerant of me, I sympathize with those who feel discriminated against.

I have gay friends. I admit it. I don’t think they are horrible people. I don’t preach to them about the evils of their lifestyle. While I don’t think what they do is a good, moral choice that pleases God, I respect their freedom to choose their lifestyle. It is not my place to be their judge. In the case of Proposition 8, though, I feel it is my place to draw the line.

To the best of my understanding, gays have the majority of their rights protected in California. They are simply denied the right to the name of marriage. If Proposition 8 fails, same-sex marriage will, by default, become legalized. (And that’s a point I don’t quite understand… shouldn’t we also have to vote on whether or not same-sex marriage is legal? It seems odd that it will pass into law simply by default if Prop 8 fails.) If same-sex marriage becomes legal in California, people from all over the US will be able to come to California to get married. The issue will carry over into other states, and those states will have to decide whether or not those marriages will be recognized as legal.

In addition, our own pastors, preachers, bishops, and reverends, will have their right to freedom of speech suppressed. Our right to hetereosexual marriage will be suppressed. Our right to freedom of religion will be challenged. How? You might ask. Well, if gay marriage becomes legal, it then becomes illegal to preach against homosexuality. It becomes a hate crime. Our spiritual leaders will be sued. Churches that refuse to perform same-sex marriage will not be allowed to perform heterosexual marriages, on the grounds that doing one and refusing to do the other is discriminatory. If you are not gay, but support gay marriage, think about how you might feel if your own chapel is suddenly hosting gay marriages. Does it change how you feel? If our pastors can’t preach what they believe, and we aren’t allowed to worship as we choose within our church buildings, doesn’t that sound like suppression of freedom of religion to you? It does to me.

I am all about equality. I am all about tolerance. But not when protecting the rights of a minority comes at a suppression of the rights of the majority. Please join me, and vote Yes on Prop 8. To learn more, or to donate, go to http://protectmarriage.com/.

Please, feel free to comment on my post, whether you agree or disagree, but keep it clean. This is a family-oriented blog. If you use profanity, I will have to delete your comment.

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Published in: on September 30, 2008 at 11:40 am  Comments (66)  
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66 Comments

  1. Our society was founded on Judeo/Christian values.  If you take those values out of society, then you have to replace them with other values.  I think this is part of the issue here.  If we reject traditional marriage, what values are we really embracing here?  There are many voices that condemn Judeo/Christian traditional values, but what do they have to replace them?  No society in history has flourished when the traditional family has not been held as the ideal.  There is no gay based society that survives for us to model our new laws by.  How do we know what the long term ramifications are and if this is what we really want?  We are going into this blind.

    I think the weight of research actually falls in favor of traditional marriage by far. It’s only recently that so called “gay marriage” has been enough of an issue politically to warrant further study. Historically, there has been no society that has embraced the gay lifestyle and flourished. History is the biggest proponent of prop 8. If society holds up marriage between a man and a woman as the ideal, families are strengthened and societies are more likely to flourish.

    Kids need a mother’s influence as well as a father’s influence. Sure there are exceptions, but that is the ideal. Men have strengths and women have strengths, they are fundamentally different. A child needs both of those influences. Gay unions by definition deny children access to one gender. We do our kids a disservice if we hold this up as an ideal equal to marriage.

    Proposition 8 protects the family ideal.

  2. Thank you for the comment! I know that is another HUGE reason why I support Prop 8. I firmly believe in the role of both a father and a mother in raising our children, and I am thankful every day for my husband who is such a wonderful father and role model to our children.

  3. “if gay marriage becomes legal, it then becomes illegal to preach against homosexuality. It becomes a hate crime.”

    Sorry, but untrue. Have you heard about the First Amendment? Alcohol consumption is legal, yet LDS leaders are still allowed to preach against it. If Fred Phelps can hold signs saying “God Hates Fags” at military funerals, I think your free speech rights to preach against homosexual behavior inside a church will be just fine.

    “Churches that refuse to perform same-sex marriage will not be allowed to perform heterosexual marriages, on the grounds that doing one and refusing to do the other is discriminatory.”

    In fact, the Supreme Court ruling in California said EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE: “[A]ffording same-sex couples the opportunity to obtain the designation of marriage will not impinge upon the religious freedom of any religious organization, official, or any other person; no religion will be required to change its religious policies or practices with regard to same-sex couples, and no religious officiant will be required to solemnize a marriage in contravention of his or her religious beliefs.”

    “I firmly believe in the role of both a father and a mother in raising our children”

    And how will denying marriage equality further your goal of having more children raised in by both a mother and a father?

    Good for you for being politically involved, but do try to get your facts right.

  4. Mistereks,

    Just because it isn’t happening right now doesn’t it mean it can’t change.

    Catholic Charities stopped providing adoption services in MA because the law conflicted with their beliefs and they were not granted an exception.

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2006/03/10/catholic_charities_to_halt_adoptions_over_issue_involving_gays/

    What happened to their First Amendment rights?

  5. Thank you Amy, I was trying to find that article, among others. And while the Supreme court may have ruled that our preachers don’t have to perform same-sex marriages, that says nothing about our buildings. If our churches are open to the public for marriages, then they must be open for all types of marriages. Here’s a quote from another article about the consequences to Californians if Prop 8 fails: “Ministers who preach against same-sex marriages may be sued for hate speech and risk government fines. It already happened in Canada, a country that legalized gay marriage. A recent California court held that municipal employees may not say: “traditional marriage,” or “family values” because, after the same-sex marriage case, it is “hate speech.”” What about the couple whose marriage license got denied because they wanted to use the terms bride and groom instead of Party A and Party B? Where does this end? And our kids will be taught in schools that same-sex marriage is just the same as hetero marriage. Health education classes are required by law to discuss marriage, and I’m sorry, but I don’t think my kids need to be taught about homosexuality at school. We have all sorts of freedoms of religion and speech, but when they infringe on the “equality” of a minority group, somehow the minority trumps the rights of anyone else.

  6. It doesn’t take a lot of work to google and find numerous articles of events all over the world where same-sex marriage is legal. For example the father of a FIVE YEAR OLD CHILD being arrested in Massachussetts because he didn’t want his child indoctrinated – and overriding his parental authority – about homosexual marriage. Or about the photographer in AZ who chose to follow her conscience and not photograph a lesbian couple’s commitment ceremony. Or the church in Canada that got it’s tax-exempt status revoked. Or a score of people in Great Britain who were investigated by the police for hate crimes by having told someone they didn’t think homosexual marriage was right – it didn’t fit in with their beliefs. Or the numerous people whose jobs have been jeopardized because they didn’t want to participate in licensing gay marriages?

    And if you’re a bride and groom (Female-Male type, that is), and you want to be KNOWN as a bride and groom, better move out of state and get married somewhere else. Yes, my friends, the State of California now calls you Party A and Party B. If you try to amend your OWN application for marriage by writing in Bride and Groom in place of Party A and Party B, your application will be REJECTED. So now, tell me, how are heterosexuals being affected? Their rights are being trampled on.

    You think First Amendment will protect them? NOPE not on your life. Massachussetts has WRITTEN INTO LAW that parents may opt out for their children to not receive instruction about gay marriage, but the 5-year old’s father received a judgment against him and said his child could not opt out of “diversity training.” (That’s PC code-talk for brainwashing.) A FIVE YEAR OLD should be learning colors of crayons and letters and sounding out words and having fights on playgrounds and learning how to get along with others – they should NOT be indoctrinated about adult matters. There’s plenty of time for that later.

    Liberally minded people who follow group-think like “not judging others”, “we shouldn’t prevent two people from marrying, regardless of their gender”, and “It’s about equality” are the politically-correct speakers and the ones who squelch free speech. Only when it serves their purpose, such as allowing ANY kind of protest against the war, which liberals are also against, will they not stand up for Free Speech. Free Speech to them is what is allowed if you agree with them.

    The liberal, pro-SSM person who left the comment above is either deliberately deceiving themselves or is participating in a great deception. The next steps in the gay agenda (and I’ve heard and read them, seen them in writing on the internet and in other places) are:

    1. Revoke tax exempt status of churches that will not perform SSM’s based on charges of discrimination. It’s already happened in other countries and in several places in California and New Jersey. (And NJ doesn’t even have SSM, only domestic partnerships.)

    2. If the churches still don’t perform SSM’s, they (homosexual activists) will seek to have the state of California no longer recognize ANY marriage performed in that church. That means that the couple deciding to be married will have to first be married somewhere the gays approve of, then have their ceremony performed by a true follower of God.

    One can only assume that given this avowed agenda, they will then attempt to force the state to annul all heterosexual marriagies that were ever performed if that church continues to defy their demands.

    Marriage was around long before governments, created by God in a specific manner. In the last 50 years, government has been trying to get God out of every aspect of every person’s lives, including through government schools and indoctrination, attacking the pledge of Allegiance, or anything related to Judeo-Christian beliefs. Now they want to come into our churches and deny the word of God throughout the Bible, which clearly states from beginning to end that homosexuality is a sin.

    But meddling in government is not enough for them. God can’t be in government. Well, I got news, you may have gotten God as much as you can out of government, but we DO still have the First Amendment, and YOU can’t come into a private church and tell them what they must teach, preach, say, and do.

    Go have your sin, be happy or miserable, I don’t care, and do whatever you want. I don’t come into your bedroom and stop you from doing what you’re doing. Don’t you come into my church, my private place of worship, my family, and usurp MY authority to teach MY children the difference between right and wrong, and tell me I’M the one who is intolerant, or that I’M the one who is a bigot.

    Additionally, this argument is not even about equality. Don’t believe me??? Go look it up. I’ll make it easy for you. Here’s the website for state of California, going directly to the Family Code section about Domestic Partnerships. If you believe this is an equality issue, go read in simple and easy to understand language what the law has been in California about Domestic Partnerships and tell me what more will marriage do for a gay couple? There is not one intrinsic item more that will be given to them from legalized gay marriage.

    http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=fam&group=00001-01000&file=297-297.5

    All of the rights, privileges, benefits, responsibilities, and protections that are afforded to heterosexual couples who ae married are provided to any two people who enter into a registered Domestic Partnership, as you can see by this section of California law. Being legally married will not legitimize their relationship one iota more in any way.

    The only thing that being legally married will do is give gays yet another stick to beat believers in God’s word with. After all the gay bashing that has been done, you would think they’d know better than to push that pain on anyone else.

    Finally, the only other point one can argue about is the rights of the people being governed. Our US Constitution talks about the right of the governed overthrowing the ones who cease to abide by the will of the people. Eight years ago, it was the will of the people in California to define marriage as between a man and a woman. Over 4,300,000 of a broad diversity of people, crossing political lines, racial lines, even gender orientation lines voted in this decidedly liberal state to maintain marriage as it has been defined throughout mankind’s history. In May 2008, four judges overturned the will of the people, and in essence, creating gay marriages. Judges have no business legislating from the bench; they overstep their authority when they do so. Judges have no business overturning the will of the majority of the people.

    Folks, wake up, get up, get mad and realize that this is TYRANNY – when a few govern without the consent of the governed. If you don’t understand it, well I guess those government-run public education institutions did a great job of not teaching you American History. Try to find an old text book that is out of print, don’t get any of those revisionist history texts, and learn. Or talk to an old person who learned it right the first time. It was tyranny that started the idea of creating our great country, and we are now in a sitution where tyranny is being thrust upon us once again from within.

    And after you’ve had a good mad, get out there and do something about it.

    The ONLY right thing to do is to VOTE YES ON PROPOSITION 8.

  7. Mistereks has already eloquently expressed some of the thoughts I was having as I was reading your blog. But, there is another point I wanted to make.

    Having the LDS church abandon it’s normal position of political neutrality and getting involved in the political battle to help pass prop 8 in California is having an unintended consequence – it has increased the amount of homophobic rhetoric from members who feel empowered by the actions of the church. We are seeing this in comments in the bloggernacle as well as discussions in church meetings – especially wards in California.

    I am an active, temple recommend holding, member of the LDS church – and I also happen to be gay; so, I am, perhaps, a bit more sensitive to this than most. Even though I choose to live by the standards of the church, it is still hurtful when I hear others accuse people like me of destroying society – when all they are asking is for same sex couples in committed monogamous relationships to have the same legal status as their heterosexual counterparts.

    While civil unions do provide many of those same rights – it’s still not equivalent. For example, if your loved one is sick and in the hospital, do you have the same rights as a married spouse to make decisions on behalf of your partner. If your partner is not a US citizen, do they automatically gain permanent residency the same as a married spouse would? Do civil unions allow for name changes without engaging a lawyer?

    Straight people cannot fathom two people of the same gender loving one another and living in a committed monogamous relationship – but I can! It is a life that beacons to me. I have chosen to stay faithful in my heterosexual relationship with my wife – but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. And, being made to feel like a pariah at church makes it all the more difficult.

    The stereotypical gay lifestyle is one filled with promiscuity, drugs, etc. When we have a couple who love one another and want to distance themselves from that lifestyle and live in a committed committed relationship – why do we want to tell them “no”?

  8. Abelard, I am sorry that you are experiencing the backlash from people who feel that they have the right to persecute others for their beliefs. I don’t endorse that at all. My ward has repeatedly told us to be cautious in how we express ourselves, and has warned us that the Church does not condone hateful speech. I applaud your commitment to your spouse, even when it is difficult for you.
    I don’t question the feelings of those who are gay – I believe that the attraction and love such couples feel are very real. However, I still don’t believe that it is the way God wants us to live. The Church has only involved itself in this issue because it is a moral one, rather than a strictly political one.
    For me, I believe that this is an issue where God has asked us, through our Prophet, to take a stand, and so I will.

  9. You say: “Well, if gay marriage becomes legal, it then becomes illegal to preach against homosexuality. It becomes a hate crime.”

    This I don’t understand. Why do you say that failing to pass a proposition outlawing gay marriage would make preaching against homosexuality a hate crime?

    Gambling houses are legal in many countries, but nobody preaching against gambling is prosecuted for a hate crime.

    Abortion is legal in every one of the United States, but nobody arguing against abortion is prosecuted for a hate crime.

    Why then do you argue that California’s continuing acceptance of gay marriage would make preaching against gay marriage a hate crime?

  10. Very well written comments all around on this blog. I only have two points I would like to make in the form of quotes:

    “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Adams, 1st Vice President and 2nd President of the U.S.A.

    “All are free to choose, of course, and we would not have it otherwise. Unfortunately, however, when some choose slackness, they are choosing not only for themselves, but for the next generation and the next. Small equivocations in parents can produce large deviations in their children.” Neal Maxwell, latter-day apostle of Jesus Christ

    God bless.

  11. If prop 8 fails, gay marriage will “by default” be legal because it currently IS legal in California. In fact a few months ago when I went to get my marriage license, a lesbian couple was getting there. The ball is already rolling and prop 8 is on board to stop it.

  12. All the reasons for Prop. 8 that I’ve heard seem incredibly weak. I think a lot of religious people are only supporting it because they think homosexuality is wrong. They fail to see that the covenant between David and Jonathan, who loved each other, is in the first book of Samuel. If they focussed on the bond of love and stopped worrying about what some loving couple might do in bed together, in private, they’d realize that there is no scriptural reason to oppose gay marriage, and every reason to celebrate it.

  13. “I don’t question the feelings of those who are gay – I believe that the attraction and love such couples feel are very real. However, I still don’t believe that it is the way God wants us to live.”

    But the way our state and our nation are supposed to work is that the rest of us shouldn’t *have* to live the way you believe God wants us to live. That’s the meaning of Tolerance (the first word in the subject heading of your blog post)… I allow you to live the way you want to, and you allow me to live the way I want to. Neither of us have to approve of the other’s choice, or believe it’s in God’s plan. We just have to respect each other’s right to live as we choose, so long as neither of us are hurting anyone and the world is continuing to spin.

    If you’re acknowledging the love that same-sex couples feel, while at the same time seeking to actively bar them from living the fullest expression of that love (lawful, monogamous marriage), well, that seems to be the opposite of Tolerance. Quite frankly, it seems like the sort of thing that would’ve been done by the bullies in your old hometown. The ones who looked down on your status as a member of the LDS church. Maybe some of them even dressed their anti-Mormon bigotry up in nice-sounding words (“I don’t believe that it is the way God wants us to live.”). But it was bigotry all the same.

    Why couldn’t they just let you live the way you wanted to live, even if *they* didn’t happen to personally believe that your faith was the way God wanted us to live?

    “If Proposition 8 fails, same-sex marriage will, by default, become legalized. (And that’s a point I don’t quite understand… shouldn’t we also have to vote on whether or not same-sex marriage is legal? It seems odd that it will pass into law simply by default if Prop 8 fails.) If same-sex marriage becomes legal in California, people from all over the US will be able to come to California to get married.”

    As noted above, same-sex marriage is *already* legal, at this very moment in California, and has been so for the past 5 months. So… have your pastors had their religious freedoms suppressed? Have they been locked up for preaching against homosexuality? Has your church been forced to conduct same-sex marriages, or blocked from conducting traditional ones? Of course not. No way.

    And guess what? None of the above has happened in Massachusetts either, where same-sex marriage has been legal for 4 years.

    See, your church and your clergy are constitutionally-protected against rules which violate their fundamental beliefs. That’s why the LDS church was legally free to bar clerical office to black people until 1978, despite the many contemporary laws against racial discrimination. And it’s why the LDS church is still legally free to bar clerical office to women, despite the many current laws against gender-based discrimination. Those religious freedoms your church enjoys–along with the freedom to refuse to conduct same-sex marriages–will exist beyond November 4th, Bethany, regardless of the outcome of Prop 8. Sadly, you believe otherwise, because you have been lied to. And doubly-sad that that mistaken belief is leading you to support discrimination against your fellow Californians who have done you no harm. And triply-sad that that discrimination is being supported by someone who, herself, has been the victim of discrimination.

    It’s not too late to *truly* support tolerance of all. It’s not too late to oppose Prop 8.

    Patrick Meighan
    Culver City, CA

  14. Tony, I appreciate that you are taking the time to explain your viewpoint, rather than simply ranting and telling me you disagree. I don’t think either of us is going to convince the other to change our minds. People can do whatever they want in their bedrooms, as long as they aren’t abusing others, for all I care. I do care when a practice that I believe is immoral becomes legalized and endorsed by my state. I care when the school district has to teach my children to value a practice that I am opposed to.
    As I commented earlier, in places where gay marriage has been legalized, like Canada, activists began suing people who spoke openly about opposing homosexuality. Whether or not they won those suits, I don’t know. It still amounts to people being sued for speaking their mind, and our tax dollars being spent on more lawsuits. Just what we need in our country.
    And since when did everything that happened in the Scriptures count as a good example? We are taught by both positive and negative examples. I have never considered the story of David and Jonathan to be an example of homosexuality; I always thought of it as brotherly love. Could be, I suppose. I still don’t see that as a reason to support gay marriage.

  15. “It doesn’t take a lot of work to google and find numerous articles of events all over the world where same-sex marriage is legal. For example the father of a FIVE YEAR OLD CHILD being arrested in Massachussetts because he didn’t want his child indoctrinated – and overriding his parental authority – about homosexual marriage. Or about the photographer in AZ who chose to follow her conscience and not photograph a lesbian couple’s commitment ceremony. Or the church in Canada that got it’s tax-exempt status revoked. Or a score of people in Great Britain who were investigated by the police for hate crimes by having told someone they didn’t think homosexual marriage was right – it didn’t fit in with their beliefs. Or the numerous people whose jobs have been jeopardized because they didn’t want to participate in licensing gay marriages?”

    Not one of the above cases involves an American church being in any way punished for refusing to conduct a same-sex marriage.

    U.S. church sanctuaries (and the clergy who serve within) have religious freedoms not extended to businesses subject to anti-discrimination statutes (like photographers in Arizona), or child-placement services which receive public funds (like adoption agencies in Massachusetts), or public schools subject to anti-discrimination statutes (like grammar schools in Massachusetts), or even church grounds/facilities which opt to apply for a property tax exemption in exchange for opening a secular portion of their grounds to public functions (like that oceanside church in New Jersey).

    That’s why the Catholic Church in this nation can legally refuse to conduct weddings of divorcees, and be constitutionally protected in doing so, and can retain its income tax exemption all the while, at the same time that you or I might find ourself successfully sued if we discriminated against divorcees in our own places of business.

    Churches have special rights the rest of us don’t.

    Look guys, it’s been 5 years since same-sex marriage has been legal in Massachusetts. If the scary gay activists are so hot and heavy to force the LDS church to open their temples to gay weddings (or to run ’em out of Massachusetts for refusing to do so) how come it hasn’t happened yet? What on earth are the evil gay hordes waiting for?!

    I’m afraid that you folks have swallowed a great deal of fear. And, sadly, what usually happens when people get fearful is they participate in the scapegoating of an unpopular minority. In this case, that unpopular minority is any fellow American who has committed the crime of loving someone of the same gender, and wishing to join him or her in the monogamous bond of marriage.

    Patrick Meighan
    Culver City, CA

  16. I agree that David and Jonathan’s covenant was close to brotherly love. Nevertheless it was a covenant between two men, each of whom loved the other as himself. As you say, what people do in the privacy of the bedroom is fine, so it isn’t a consideration here any more than churches oppose marriage between infertile people, or arranged marriages which used to be the norm in many Christian societies and had quite a lot more to do with keeping wealth within the hands of the wealthy than anything godly.

    Can you give an example of a Canadian being sued for saying that homosexuality is wrong?

  17. “People can do whatever they want in their bedrooms, as long as they aren’t abusing others, for all I care. I do care when a practice that I believe is immoral becomes legalized and endorsed by my state.”

    There’s an inherent contradiction, above. Same-sex intercourse has been legalized by your state, just as same-sex marriage has. And you say you don’t care if people engage in same-sex intercourse, as has been legalized by the state. But you say you *do* care if people engage in same-sex weddings, as has been legalized by the state, and that you are working to stop it. So does that mean that you don’t consider same-sex intercourse to be immoral (and thus unworthy of legalization by the state)? Just same-sex weddings? Or is it that you consider *both* to be immoral, but only *one* of those immoral actions is so immoral as to be worthy of outrage when legalized by the state, and the other is just a little bit immoral, but not so immoral as to be worthy of outrage at the state’s legalization of same?

    In sum: it all does not compute.

    “I care when the school district has to teach my children to value a practice that I am opposed to.”

    State eduction law in California *already* mandates age-appropriate, non-explicit discussion of same-sex couples in public school classes on family structure. It mandates such mention be made in a non-judgmental fashion, and in a way which does not negatively reflect upon any church’s disapproval of said couples. That law existed in California *long* before same-sex marriage became legal here, and will continue to exist long beyond election day, regardless of the outcome of Prop 8.

    Voting No on Prop 8 to bar your gay friends from marrying the people they love will make no impact whatsoever on the above public school statute, to which you are so opposed. It’ll just stop your gay friends from marrying the people they love.

    “As I commented earlier, in places where gay marriage has been legalized, like Canada, activists began suing people who spoke openly about opposing homosexuality. Whether or not they won those suits, I don’t know. It still amounts to people being sued for speaking their mind, and our tax dollars being spent on more lawsuits. Just what we need in our country.

    a) Canada does not have the same free speech protections that we enjoy in the U.S.

    b) In our nation, anyone can attempt to sue anyone else for anything. I could wake up tomorrow and decide I want to sue my dead mother for maternal malpractice, and as long as I can get a lawyer to take the case, I got myself a lawsuit! I’ll lose, however. And anyone who tries suing your church for preaching against homosexuality will, similarly, lose.

    Passing Prop 8 will not prevent some yahoo from someday attempting (unsuccessfully) to sue your church, any more than it’ll prevent me from suing my no-longer-living mom. All passing Prop 8 will do is make sure that your homosexual friends who wish to marry will be legally barred from living as they wish. That doesn’t sound like friendship to me, and *really* doesn’t sound like tolerance.

    Patrick Meighan
    Culver City, CA

  18. Canada February 24, 2000 A professional printer refused to print material for the Canadian Gay and Lesbian Archives because he felt doing so would violate his religious beliefs. He was fined and ordered to print the material anyway. He took his case to the Ontario Supreme Court and then to the Ontario Court of Appeal and lost both times. His total legal bills exceed $170,000.
    http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/persecution/pch0080.html

    Canada 2001 An evangelical Christian employed as a prison guard placed an ad in the Saskatchewan Star Phoenix. The
    ad was a picture of two stick men holding hands, with a red circle with a bar across superimposed on them. Below the picture were four scripture references, but not actual Bible verses. He was convicted of a hate crime by the Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal. The judge suggested that using Bible verses in a newspaper ad like this could be construed as hate
    literature. Thus, there is now legal precedent in Canada that the Holy Bible is hate literature.
    http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/persecution/pch0080.html

    Canada May 1, 2002 A Catholic high school in Whitby, Ontario was forced by the Ontario Supreme Court to allow a homosexual student to take his boyfriend to the graduation prom, even though the church-run school has strict
    prohibitions against condoning any kind of homosexual behavior.
    http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/persecution/pch0080.html

    Canada February 3, 2004 Canadian teacher Chris Kempling was suspended for one month for his Christian views on homosexuality, expressed in a letter to the editor.
    http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005/sep/05093005.html

    Canada January 1, 2005 Calgary Bishop Fred Henry is forced to remove a diocesan letter from his website because it urged
    Catholic Christians to support traditional marriage and oppose same-sex marriage.
    http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005/jan/050113a.html

    Canada January 26, 2005 B.C. Knights of Columbus are sued for not permitting the rental of their hall for a same-sex wedding reception.
    http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005/jan/05012607.html

    Canada August 16, 2007 Canadian Mennonites forced to place children in state-run schools or children will be placed in foster homes. State-run schools teach “alternative” (i.e. homosexual)
    lifestyles contrary to their religious beliefs.
    http://www.canada.com/components/print.aspxid=98ae22a3a4e1-4286-bb21-2d42127c47a6&k=78372

  19. Bethany = Here is were I found the information. -Pat

    http://www.skylinechurch.org/resources/religious_persecution.pdf

  20. To me, there is a difference between our schools educating our children about homosexuality and our schools teaching our children that it is a lifestyle choice that is in all ways equal to a heterosexual relationship. Even though those relationships inherently are unequal, since procreation is impossible. I would rather discussions about sexuality take place in my home, where I know my child will be taught in a respectful manner, and will be able to ask me questions and have them answered respectfully. I know the state feels the need to educate our children since not all parents take the time, but the information our children are getting at younger and younger ages frankly apalls me.
    For those of you who keep telling me no one is ever going to sue me for saying I don’t believe gay marriage should be allowed, or that no court would uphold such a suit, consider it this way. What if, instead, a Southern “white” church said that black couples were forbidden to get married there because black people didn’t deserve to get married? What if a Christian church said that Jewish couples couldn’t get married there, simply because they felt Jews didn’t have the right to get married? Can you imagine the response? The lawsuits? The uproar? Now, instead, replace the word black or Jewish with gay, and insert the chapel of your choice. If prop 8 fails, what’s the difference? Just because it hasn’t happened yet in Massachusetts doesn’t mean it’s not going to happen. And if just one judge somewhere decides it’s a valid lawsuit, it will set a major precedent.
    And I still believe I can be tolerant of other people’s beliefs and different lifestyle choices while adhering to my own moral compass. We choose to differ, but I’m not going to ridicule anyone. I believe murder is immoral. No one’s complaining that I discriminate against murderers. I believe child abuse is immoral. Is that discriminatory? I believe that drug use is immoral. Am I considered a bigot against druggies now? I believe gay marriage is immoral, and should not be allowed. I believe having an opinion and expressing it in an open, honest, and polite manner, even when it is unpopular, is not discriminatory. What with freedom of speech and all.

  21. Pat, thanks.

    The case of the printer is a clear discrimination case. The printer didn’t just express his opinion but engaged in active discrimination in the course of his business.

    The Saskatchewan newspaper ad case is more relevant. Hugh Owens eventually took the case to appeal and had it overturned, but this took considerable effort. The case established that citing or quoting bible verses in themselves, no matter what hideous incitements those verses may contain, does not in itself constitute incitement to hatred under Canadian law. I’m skeptical of that myself, given that some of the verses incited murder.

    The Whitby case is another clear discrimination case. I’m surprised that the school is permitted to have rules against homosexually oriented sexual behavior; this in itself is clearly discriminatory in my opinion and goes far beyond expression of opinion.

    Chris Kempling was disciplined for publicly expressing opinions on the handling of homosexuality in the school curriculum. He was suspended for one month for “[creating] a hostile and discriminatory environment for gay and lesbian students at his school”.

    The British Columbia Appeals Court, Supreme Court, and Human Rights Tribunal all ruled that the disciplinary action against Kempling was appropriate. Leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada was denied.

    I can’t see any evidence that Fred Henry was forced to do anything. He has generated considerable support and considerable opposition within his own church.

    Knights of Columbus is another clear discrimination case.

    Canadian Mennonites is a children’s rights issue. Children have a right to education, and if their parents attempt to thwart this the state should (in the ultimate) take action. This wasn’t about the Mennonites expressing their opinions.

  22. The “lifestyle choice” language is the key here. It shows that a religious Christian viewpiont is being pushed.

    Some people seem to be sexually attracted to those of their own sex. Thus their sexuality isn’t so much a lifestyle choice as part their identity. There is nothing wrong or sinful abnout this. Scriptures written thousands of years ago may say different, but then we’ve learned a bit since those scriptures were written. Why should we insist on tying ourselves to the ignorant past and persecuting one another for the sake of ancient writings?

  23. Because scriptures are the word of God. Morality may become “old-fashioned” and be considered outdated as the world moves on, but what good are standards if we change them constantly?
    Check out this article for a well-written argument. http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2008/05/21/misunderstanding_marriage_in_california/
    I especially like this quote from it: “Gay and lesbian couples are entitled to marry, writes Chief Justice Ronald George, but that “does not mean that this constitutional right . . . must . . . extend to polygamous or incestuous relationships.” Why not? Well, because “our nation’s culture has considered the latter types of relationships inimical to the mutually supportive and healthy family relationships promoted by the constitutional right to marry.” So while the bar to homosexual marriage must be overturned because the court considers the public’s opposition to it outdated, the public’s opposition to incest and polygamy is still a good reason to bar them. As one of the dissenters notes, such logic invites a future court to overturn those prohibitions as well.” We can’t rewrite our laws every time social opinions change; what’s the point of having laws or morals if they are so easily swayed by public opinion?

  24. Well you believe that scriptures are the word of your creator. This isn’t a universal view, and indeed there is no objective evidence to support the view that any of the world’s many religious scriptures are of divine origin–or even that the spiritual realm has an objective existence.

    You state that at some future point polygamy and incest could in principle be made legal. This is perfectly correct. If the public accepts it, then they make it the law. All law comes from people, though there is a tendency on some people’s part to claim that it derives ultimately from somewhere else.

  25. If proposition 8 does not pass, and the idea of Gay Marriage becomes enshrined as a “civil right” or “human right”, anything that goes against it will be considered discrimination. It’s a whole different category than any other law and because it is being argued as a civil or human right, it is guaranteed protections that trump our protections of free speech and freedom of religion. In case after case, whenever free speech or freedom of religion conflict with gay rights, gay rights supersede.

    So even if laws promoting gambling don’t prevent you from speaking out against the evils of gambling, laws protecting gay rights WILL prevent any other views from being expressed because of it’s special protections.

  26. Could you give an example of the “case after case” in the USA where gay rights have superseded protections of religious freedom and freedom of expression guaranteed under the First Amendment?

  27. Tony… You must read the following dissertation regarding the question you asked Beetlebabee. I found it most interesting. -Pat

    http://courses.missouristate.edu/RalphSmith/notes/Pubpol7_Notes_45.htm

  28. Pat, oh I agree that the framing of gay marriage as a rights issue alone is misconceived. Marriage is a state benefit that provides social stability and community recognition, and its extension to same-sex couples is a logical extension. The principal opposition seems to come from interpretations of ancient scripture which is used to bolster old-fashioned anti-homosexual prejudice, and of course no modern state would want to support such prejudice. It follows that marriage will be extended to same-sex couples as anti-homosexual prejudice slowly but inexorably becomes socially unacceptable.

    There isn’t even any need to mention rights at all.

    But rights are involved just the same.

  29. Tony, I think I’ve heard your argument somewhere before… it usually goes like this: “But mom, everybody’s doing it!” “If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you jump too?”
    To me, that is what you are saying. A small section of our population has decided they are going to practice a behavior that used to be considered socially unacceptable – whether you consider it as going against the laws of God or nature – and now we have to reconsider our moral stance. Homosexuality still contradicts the laws of God and nature; just because more people are practicing it doesn’t mean everyone else has to approve of the practice. What others do in private doesn’t affect me, but when you turn it into a public, political affair that does affect everyone else, I choose to make a stand.
    Since I believe in God, and the truth of modern and ancient scriptures, and the words of ancient and modern prophets, I believe that God knows better than we do. The word of God is enough of a motivator for me. You consider the scriptures out-dated and of no value; I consider them to be inexpressibly important in my life. I KNOW that God exists, loves me as an individual, and guides my life each day. Nothing you say to me will persuade me otherwise. If God tells me through His scriptures and prophets to oppose gay marriage, then I will. That’s all I need to know.

  30. Everybody (well most people) may be accepting homosexual couples’ wish to marry) but it is for a good reason: the only reason for them not to do so is anti–homosexual prejudice backed up by ancient scripture that has been rejected by, for instance, the twelve episcopal bishops who have opposed Proposition 8.

    In their statement the bishops said they “do not believe that marriage of heterosexuals is threatened by same-sex marriage. Rather the Christian values of monogamy, commitment, love, mutual respect and witness are enhanced for all by providing this right to gay and straight alike.”

    You claim that same sex marriage “contradicts the laws of God”. Does it? How do you know? Why is David and Jonathan’s same-sex covenant, and their mutual love, celebrated in the first book of Samuel?

    You claim that same-sex marriage “contradicts the laws of nature”. In saying that you only demonstrate your ignorance of nature.

    You say you “know” that God exists. I say rather, that you believe it is so and you believe that you are privy to his will.

    You can live according to your principles, but you will have to live, increasingly in a world that does not permit you to harm others by poisoning the minds of those around you against your homosexual neighbors.

  31. What about all the other bishops and pastors who support Prop 8? And I researched into the story of David and Jonathan. I read ancient Greek quite fluently. There is no support for your interpretation of their “love” as being homosexual, physical love. The word for love used there is very different, describing a sincere, brotherly love. I also think it’s ironic that you keep telling me the scriptures are outdated, and then using them to argue your point.
    Sodomy is expressly forbidden in the Old Testament. Hence, it contradicts the laws of God.
    It contradicts the laws of nature because it is unnatural; homosexual acts cannot result in procreation. No other animal on earth chooses a homosexual lifestyle. If we all chose homosexuality, we would die out. Does that sound natural to you?
    Why do I have to accept your view that homosexuality is acceptable, but you can’t accept my view that it isn’t something we ought to embrace? And I have NEVER said anything in my life to insult a gay person, to their face or behind their back. I believe that, since I do have freedom of religion in this country, that I can believe that gay marriage is immoral. I also believe that I have freedom of speech to express that point of view. And that was the whole point of what I originally posted – somehow, because this issue is about gay marriage, I am not allowed to believe that gay marriage isn’t okay, and I’m not allowed to express that in a non-hateful manner? Where did my rights go?

  32. Tony, I agree with Bethany here in regard to the word of God: if you don’t believe in them (like yourself) why are you trying to argue with them?

    It is very easy to see how often God condemns homosexuality in the scriptures, and glorifies the family and marriage between a man and a woman.

    You talk so much about how we’re so much smarter than those who wrote the scriptures thousands of years ago. How we shouldn’t believe in those ancient things that have been disproved in our day…

    “Why are we mortals so prone to garnish the sepulchers of the dead and stone the living, or give great credence to the past and deny the present, or to assume that only what is written has happened?” -Spencer W. Kimball

  33. Both of these arguments basically boil down to truth. Who has the truth? I’m going to borrow here from a post on another board that I thought was insightful—
    “On the one hand is the belief that society is an open system –that there are absolute standards of right and wrong that transcends individuals, society, and time and is outside of ourselves and our society, and that the source of these is God. On the other side of the divide is the belief that society is closed—there is no god that sets standards. Society itself sets standards.

    “The stakes are high. Those who believe in absolute standards say that to violate them is to bring judgment not only on those who defy them, but on the whole of society itself. Those who deny absolute standards say that these standards are tools of repression, and that we must free ourselves from this bondage.”

    So, how can you know truth? Basically, I think there are two ways, scientific method, which is to try and see, or to ask God who reveals truth directly. Many people don’t believe in God or revelation, but even God tells us that seeing the fruits of people’s actions will tell us whether they are good or bad ideas. That goes right back to the scientific method.

    My question is, if you don’t believe in God, or revealed truth, what proof is there that gay marriage is healthy and good for society? I have not been able to find records of any society on the earth that has tried gay marriage as a way of life and flourished. The earth has been around for at least thousands of years. Surely if it is such a good idea, some civilization somewhere would have adopted it. Why aren’t there whole flourishing civilizations of gay citizens for us to look to as an example of what we too could become?

  34. Tony, about your question earlier, I have read of many cases over the last four or five months since this issue really caught my attention. It’s amazing how many articles pop out of the woodwork when an issue is on your mind… I don’t have links to all of those cases, but I did a quick google search and came up with this page of supporting cases:

    http://www.iprotectmarriage.com/facts/

  35. Here’s another page a friend sent me that I just found fascinating, it’s got the answers to a lot of questions I’ve personally had about this issue:

    http://www.law2.byu.edu/organizations/marriage_family/past_conferences/sept2006/drafts2.php

    I was especially fascinated with the first paper: “Husbanding Sex: An Anthropological View Of Why Conjugal Marriage Prevails in Human Societies and Why Homoeroticism Doesn’t” since it answers some of the questions I posed here earlier.

  36. I’d like to respond to Patrick. Patrick, I don’t know if you have any children, but I have three. When they were 3, 5 and 8 years old my brother had a baby out of wedlock. I told my family that I didn’t want my children to know about the baby unless my brother married her mother because they were too young to have the sex talk. My mother told them about their new cousin against my wishes, and it led to questions I didn’t want to answer.
    California curriculum teaches about families in kindergarten. Changing the definition of marriage will require that unfamiliar types of families are included in the curriculum, and you better believe that those 5-year-olds will want to know how that works.
    Fourth, fifth and six-graders have a Human Growth and Development unit which teaches about the changes going on in their bodies and culiminates with reproduction. If homosexuality is taught at this age, the gay community will regret it, because these kids are not politically correct. Their responses come uncensored, from the gut. They are not a tolerant group – as Bethany has shared.
    In Freshman Health class, sexuality is taught. This class is required! Parents cannot opt-out of this one. State law requires that our children’s education conforms to the State Constitution. Heterosexual intercourse is fully explained, and homosexual sex will be, too. I’m not happy about how the state has decided to teach sex up to this point, and I really don’t want them to teach homosexuality, but they won’t have a choice.

  37. There’s something I’ve been wondering about. I read an article in the New York Times, and it quoted the CA Supreme Court ruling on same sex marriage. It was the first time I’d seen it quoted. It said in part that everyone should have the right “to establish a legally recognized family with the person of one’s choice”.
    In order to extend equal rights to everyone, this should also include polygamists and immediate family members (incest). You would think that the Mormon church would love the opportunity to re-instate polygamy, but that hasn’t happened. Why?
    This country was established with the intent to protect the rights of individuals and the institutions they valued. Our laws and our culture are based upon the common understanding of what institutions such as marriage mean. Men and women have equal rights, and we still manage to call our sexes by two different names, why can’t we call our unions by two different names? I don’t care if a same sex couple wants to have a wedding. Have a reception, too! Just don’t change the definition of a word that has had a very specific meaning througout the world for thousands of years.
    Same sex couples already have families in California. Prop 8 won’t destroy anyone’s family. It is about the word “marriage”. Changing the definition of the word marriage to be less specific seems like a mistake to me. Vague laws are never a good thing. Can’t we just stick with making sure that homosexual couples have all their rights protected under domestic partnership laws, and not become a state where the laws are full of words with unclear meanings?

  38. Yes, definitely for polygamy (which is a common enough practice even if not currently recognize in law in some countries).

    When raised apart, family members do demonstrate a strong affinity and sometimes this leads to marriage before either party realizes that they’re actually related. Here is an actual example that is in the German courts now. The brother was adopted and the family was reunited when brother and sister were adults.

    Moreover, some cultures even regard cousin marriage as incest, whilst in others recognized. So in the case of cousin marriage at least it’s a matter of “when in Rome, do as the Romans do” rather than an absolute rule.

    If Proposition 8 is merely about the word “marriage”, then it will die the death deserved by all verbal manipulation. If it is about something real, then it will die because attempts to impose religious views on secular institutions always die in the end.

  39. Stretch it and stretch it and pretty soon, marriage will be so inclusive it won’t mean anything. It is between a man and a woman. Nothing else. I think if the gay community wants to celebrate civil unions, they ought to. Let them build up civil unions the way marriage has been built up, by the people, not by judges enforcing their will on everyone else. If civil unions have a second class feeling, change the feeling, but don’t change definitions to include what they don’t.

  40. I thought that Proposition 8 was about changing the definition. The state Supreme Court is clear that, as the law stands, it includes marriages between people of the same sex.

  41. But the State Supreme Court has only recently decided that there is no law against gay marriage. After the voters of California already tried to ban it once… And the only reason it is legal currently is because there is nothing excluding it in the state constitution. The people who founded the state of California and wrote the state constitution obviously felt there was no need to legislate what marriage was at that time, because it was unthinkable to them that anyone would ever challenge the traditional definition of marriage. Why bother to define something that there is no question about? And since it wasn’t initially included in the constitution, a few judges have decided that must mean it’s legal. That’s what I don’t understand. 4 people decided to push an agenda that was contrary to the will of an overwhelming majority of Californians. It seems ridiculous to use the lack of exclusion of gay marriage from the constitution as a premise to decide that it must be legalized, when there was no reason to have made legislation concerning it in the first place. 4 people have decided that, by default, gay marriage must be legal. Instead of it immediately being legalized, it seems like we, the citizens of California, ought to have the chance to vote on it. Only after the vote should it become legal, if Prop 8 were to fail. Proposition 8 is about clearing up the definition, since no one bothered to do it before. Common sense and standards of morality dictated that it didn’t need to be done before, and it’s a little sad that we have to do it now. Gay couples have all other rights they want, excepting only the name of marriage. But if prop 8 fails, not only will they get the name of marriage, they will also get indoctrination of our children. They will get the right to suppress my freedom of speech and religion, rights upon which this country was founded.

  42. “Nothing excluding it in the state constitution” seems reasonable to me. In California first cousins can marry; In some other jurisdictions this is not permitted. The laws vary.

  43. I understood that in 2000 the majority of californias had voted in favor of proposition 22, defining marriage between only a man and a woman. But this was passed proposition was not an ammendment to the constitution and was “therefore” able to be overturned by the CA supreme court this past year. Now a yes on Prop. 8 means that marriage will be defined within California’s constitution between only a man and a woman.

  44. And now Connecticut. Here we are, working to the bone here in California to rid ourselves of the chaos four judges inflicted on our communities and families, and now, yet another state has fallen to activist courts. I am so upset that the gay community can force their moral views on society. This is the kind of tyranny that our forefathers fled from. They began this country as a refuge from government interference in religion. Whether or not they admit it, the gay belief is a religious belief. It is a religion. The judiciary has no business meddling in moral issues. Where does it stop?

  45. You have the facts the wrong way around, beetlebabee, when you says that “the gay community can force their moral views on society. ”

    Same-sex marriage has the sole effect of recognizing the union of people of the same sex. Nobody is forced to do anything or not to do anything, as long as they do not harm others because of their sexuality. That is unacceptable behavior, irrespective of whether proposition 8 passes or not.

  46. Tony, If proposition 8 does not pass, I will not have the right to keep my children from being taught the same sex lifestyle at school. That is a huge infringement on my values, and a major concern for me.

    In addition, it bothers me when people say, “It’s only X, it’s not more than that, it’ll never go further than that,” when in reality it has. The gay movement is not content to have their unions recognized, not content to have legal status, now they want the name, the respect, the approval that comes with calling same sex unions, marriage. Once that is accomplished, the door is legally open.

  47. beetlebabee, you’re wrong. Under California law you have the right as a parent to be notified in advance about curriculum content related to Health, family life education, and sex education, and you have the right to opt your child out if you have a religious objection (see Education code sections §51240, §51550, §51555, §51820).

  48. Marriage is taught not on Tuesday, or the last Friday of October, it’s taught every day, in how families are presented, in how stories are told to children…there are endless opportunities for this infusion. It’s not going to just be sex ed in the 5th and 6th grade.

  49. Well I think you’re right in a way. If little Jimmy is kept back from sex education by his parents and taught that homosexuality is wrong, his perception of some of his neighbors and classmates may be damaged thereby, and he may get into trouble for saying bad things about the adoptive parents of one of his classmates.

    People who want to exercise their right under the California Education Code to damage the minds of their own children should take the bulk of the responsibility for the outcome.

  50. Rodney King was right when he asked “why can’t we all just get along?” “Marriage” has a definition, and always has. Everyone has the right to marry according to this definition. Changing the definition, or it’s requirements is not fair to those who participate in the institution.
    OUr state offers a free education to children between the ages of 5 and18. If I want to send my 3 year old to Kindergarten, it doesn’t matter how much we want it, how prepared the child is, or how many people agree with me. Kindergarten is for 4-5-6 year olds. I am an adult with legal rights, and I can’t attend kindergarten, either. Homosexuals can and do marry. They marry someone of the opposite sex because that’s what marriage is.

  51. The restrictive definition espoused by Leslie exists nowhere in California law. Proposition 8 is an attempt to change the constitution so as to install that restriction.

  52. There’s a good reason why names and definitions should be specific. George Forman named all his sons George, and everyone laughed. I gave all my children different names out of respect for them as individuals. I respect my gay friends. They are individuals who have a relationship that is uniquely different from marriage. I don’t respect them less because they have a different name for their relationship than I do. They have rights provided under state law. If we’ve missed some rights, then let’s add them. But I don’t see changing the name of their relationship, or the definition of my relationship as an option.

  53. A marriage is a secular, legal entity in US law. While California also recognized domestic partner registrations which trigger state and local laws, only marriage has recognition at federal level.

    The statement that marriage has to be between a man and a woman exists nowhere in California or Federal law.

  54. This goes back to what I was trying to say before. The only reason marriage is not defined by the law currently is that there has been no need to until now. Common sense and a common belief in the sanctity of marriage meant that there was no reason to define something everyone understood; hence, laws defining marriage were omitted. Now we have a choice. Are we going to preserve the traditional definition of marriage, or are we going to turn it into an entirely new concept?
    Marriage, between a man and a woman, has been around for millenia. Many clergymen will reference the power they have been granted by both the government and by God Himself to unite a couple in matrimony during a wedding ceremony. Marriage started as a religious ceremony. Why can’t we leave it as that, if our government isn’t supposed to regulate our religion? Ever since we embraced Atheism as our state religion, we have been suppressing Christianity and all other major religions in our country. It’s not politically correct to be Christian anymore, or to have morals, or to speak out about your beliefs. And since marriage originated as a religious ceremony, and you don’t seem to believe in God, why do you have such an overwhelming need to participate in a religious practice?

  55. David and Jonathan (to pick one example from the bible) demonstrates that same-sex covenants recognized by the highest power in the land have a very, very ancient pedigree.

    Why suddenly change it so that they are not recognized at the highest level?

    Because, perhaps, the homosexuals are actually seeking to use that right?

  56. Tony, as I already pointed out, I researched your assertion that David and Jonathan had a sexual relationship. There’s no foundation for that claim. Haven’t you every heard of men being good friends? A covenant is a promise, and there’s nothing inherently sexual about that. They covenanted to love and protect each other as brothers, which the ancient language of the text makes explicitly clear. The word used to describe their love is the same word the Bible uses to describe God’s love for us, and I’m pretty sure that’s not a sexual relationship. Throughout the Bible, homosexuality is condemned as an immoral practice. Stop trying to use the Bible to justify something that it clearly disapproves of. Especially if you don’t respect the Bible as the word of God. You can’t have it both ways.

  57. Bethany, you falsely claim that I asserted a sexual relationship between David and Jonathan.

    I made no such claim.

    However they loved one another “as his own soul” and they made a covenant together and shared even their clothing. This same-sex relationship, we’re told by Samuel, was recognized by all.

    Now please drop your obsession with what people who love one another might do together in private. Samuel is a precedent for a same-sex covenant recognized at the highest level.

  58. Tony,
    Prop 22 which was passed in 2000 is a California law, or at least was until those 4 judges over-ruled it last spring. There was no need before that, but California citizens saw the need and passed the law – by 61%!
    So, up until 5 or 6 months ago marriage was defined as between as man and a woman in the state of California.

    The statement that marriage is a secular entity is only partially true. Either the government or a church official can perform a marriage. So, is federal recognition what you’re really seeking? Because that is my question for the gay community. What is it that you want from a marriage that you aren’t getting from a domestic partnership? Federal recognition?

  59. Ruling on constitutional matters is the job of the California Supreme Court.

    You cannot seriously fault them for doing their job.

    The statement that in the US law marriage is wholly and solely a secular entity is completely true. This is why this matter is being addressed in ballots, legislatures and courts and not in churches.

  60. You can’t have it both ways Tony, either you’re saying David and Jonathan had some kind of marital relationship which shows that the bible agrees with you, or you’re saying they don’t, they just had some kind of blood brother bonding type of agreement. Which is it that you’re advocating?

  61. The relationship is described well enough, and my statement is clear enough. The question of tab A fitting into slot B exists nowhere in the California marriage form or in the California Code.

  62. Yeah, ok enough with the tab visualizations.

  63. You know Tony, the thumbnail image you use makes it look like you have steam coming out of your eyes. I know I’m off topic, but I just wondered where in the heck you got that picture and what is it really? Laser vision? We’ve been watching too much Smallville at my house, I know.

  64. See the larger version on my blog page. It’s a self portrait taken in a railway train window one evening as I traveled home from work. If you look at the original you can just see the reflection of my face peering murkily back at the camera. I used a cheap phone camera and was quite impressed with the result, considering.

  65. Oh, my current blog design has no portrait. Try this page.

  66. Yeah, that’s a pretty good picture……especially for a phone on a jiggly moving vehicle.

    I don’t know about the colors…kind of muted and thoughtful….I’m kind of partial to livelier shades…metallic green for instance. Alright! I’m going back to bed. Someone take the keyboard away….


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