Pro-Liberty, Not Anti-Mormon

The lights of local TV cameras seeking gay-on-the-street sound-bites illuminated the darker part of Broadway on the Upper West Side … Continued

The lights of local TV cameras seeking gay-on-the-street sound-bites illuminated the darker part of Broadway on the Upper West Side where thousands of people marched the other night chanting, “Gay, straight, black, white, marriage is a civil right.”

I was one of them, upset and disillusioned that a right could be so easily eliminated for an entire group of people that included me. Sure, New York has never allowed same-sex marriage. But it was a right granted in California until a simple majority of voters decided that gay relationships weren’t equal to their own.

I joined up with the march in progress at West 66th Street, in front of Manhattan’s Mormon Temple. The spot was significant because California’s constitutional amendment was bankrolled largely by the Mormon Church, which urged its members nationwide to donate tens of millions of dollars to stop gay couples and their families from receiving the same legal recognition and protections everyone else enjoys.

“Two-four-six-eight, separate church and state,” the crowd shouted.

I couldn’t agree more. Working for the American Civil Liberties Union, I know this concept is what allows America to be America — we may not be each other’s cup of tea in our beliefs and actions, but somehow we have to find a way for a variety of kettles to peacefully share the stove.

But some of the protest signs were especially ugly and demeaning to the Mormon faith. One sign made fun of the protective, spiritual undergarments worn by Mormon men: “Keep your holy undies out of our business!”

I chuckled. But it bothered me to consider doing to the Mormons what they did to me — and they did pay for some disgusting and deceitful TV ads in their campaign to eliminate my rights. As a civil liberties advocate, I should follow Voltaire’s notion of defending the rights of those I disagree with.

News crews from the New York media market seemed to have a TV camera and correspondent at every block, interviewing marchers. I wondered what I would say if stopped. I realized that I would have to say that I’m not protesting the right of Mormons to believe or say that gay unions are wrong and sinful. The First Amendment guarantees them the right to decide who they deem worthy of membership and marriage in their church. It also lets them preach what they want, even at our front doors.

What I was protesting was the obliteration of that delicate tea-cup-and-kettle system I like to envision as the church-state balance. I thought about divorce. Mormons detest it. Yet the state allows it and some 50 percent of straight couples do it. And still, Mormon families seemingly flourish in spite of it. Why the need to ban gay unions if there isn’t a need to eliminate the right of divorced people to marry? Why can’t gay couples get a marriage license at city hall and just not be allowed to marry in a Mormon temple? There’s precedent for it. Catholics, Muslims and Jews aren’t allowed to marry in Mormon temples, but they still all sign the same state-issued marriage certificate before going off to have their own ceremonies in a place of worship that welcomes them. Can’t gay couples be treated the same?

As I marched past the Mormon temple toward Columbus Circle, I could understand why so many of the protesters were directing their anger at the church. We are not a Mormon nation, as much as we are not a Baptist or Pentecostal nation. So it is painful when any religion forces all of us to live their way by altering the Constitution upon which all our laws are based. But when this initial sting of anger passes, I hope we can use the rights of speech and assembly still afforded to us in the Constitution to win back the fundamental right of marriage we lost in California, and have yet to gain in other states. And that means not trying to destroy the rights of Mormons or anyone else who wants to believe our relationships are less than theirs.

In the marketplace of ideas, the best idea will win. So far in our nation’s history, despite long odds and terrible setbacks, equality has been a winning idea. We don’t need to bash Mormons to prove that gay couples deserve equal treatment by the state. What Mormons believe is up to them and maybe they’ll change (they did finally allow African-Americans to become full members in 1978) and maybe they won’t. There will always be disparate kettles trying to share space on the American stove.

What we can do is a better job of crying foul the next time a group tries to upset the church-state balance. We can also make our case with a more diverse audience. After all, there isn’t a racial, cultural or religious tea party that doesn’t have gay attendees. Mormons included.

(This essay was originally posted by Engardio on the ACLU blog It is republished with the author’s permission.)

Joel P. Engardio is a writer, documentary filmmaker and civil liberties advocate. His work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, USA Today and on NPR and PBS. Engardio directed the award-winning PBS film KNOCKING about Jehovah’s Witnesses. He currently helps the American Civil Liberties Union communicate its message and issues through online video.

  • strohblumen

    My, you sound so principled in the name of freedom!Have you protested your country’s invasion and slaughter of Iraqis, where over a million human beings have been murdered and their homes, lost their freedom and destroyed by your fellow-countrymen?

  • CCNL

    Homosexual sexual activity is to say the least, very yucky. Other than that, one assumes proper sanitary and cleaning procedures will keep homosexuals disease-free/guilt free or will it??

  • kert1

    I find it very ironic that he is protesting Mormons. Aren’t these the same people that used to have their own laws about marriage. Something about polygamy, or many wives. We actually took away their civil right to have many wives.Actually if you know anything about our rights, marriage is not a right. It is recognized by our laws when you follow the definition. Of course some Mormons do still marry many wives, it is just outside our government system. Of course gays can do this as well. The laws can’t regulate personal relationships and don’t try. Why they need this, I’m not sure. It really seems like they are forcing everyone to their definition of marriage. One the country does not accept.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    strohblumen : American homophobia lead direct and true to the war in Iraq. For it was by his appeal to homophobia that President Bush got elected, not ONCE but TWICE. And by his election, we have been dragged into the quagmire of Iraq, Vietnam II. People who encourage and support anti-gay policies and politicians have a gread deal of blood on their hands, and a great deal to atone for, far beyond their mere ill-will against and bad treatment of gay people.

  • BenCom

    Oh the hypocrisy of this article!!! If you could only hear yourself. “We are not a Mormon nation, as much as we are not a Baptist or Pentecostal nation. So it is painful when any religion forces all of us to live their way by altering the Constitution upon which all our laws are based.”Right back at you pal. Why should homosexuals be permitted to impose their beliefs on the rest of this country when it is obvious that most people do not share those beliefs. You would have those beliefs rammed down everyone’s throats, at the same time as you deny people the right to preserve their own sacred beliefs.Mormons are an easy target because they are a minority religion that is often misunderstood. Why aren’t you railing against blacks for their support of Prop 8 (70% support)? Ah, that wouldn’t look very good would it. Bigots claiming bigotry. Funny eh?

  • sparrow4

    I’d like to see your information for those extra-legal mormon marriages you’re talking about. You’ll have to back up an assertion like that with hard facts.As for why gays want the right to marry- marriage will spouses fundamental legal rights in the relationship they do not now have, as well as fundamental benefits. although it varies from state to state, gay civil unions in many cases still do not convey these basic rights. Nor do gay partners get the same social, communal or familial recognition they would if married. There are very real legal reasons and tax reasons. And since they do pay taxes, and obey the laws, just like the rest of us, why should they not be entitled to the same rights?I thought we, as a country had moved pst the old prejudices- Stonewall wass a long time ago, Matthew Sheppard only 10 years ago- but the cost and pain of our bigotry stays with us. And it demeans us as people much more than it demeans gays. The religious viewpoint is over 2000 years out of date on this- slavery was an accepted institution then too. the justice system said you could cut off a man’s hand for stealing. we used to treat children as people without any rights, forcing them to work in factories, and never thought twice about the cultural norms of “child brides” or polygamy. Women could not vote in this country, and went through hell to get that right, a right that was already in the Constitution.Obviously we’ve come a long way. What’s the excuse for treating gays the way we do? Let’s not point to the bible- things change. We change as we become more enlightened- for the better, one can hope. Unless you would like to go back to living in a bibical society. I don’t think you’d like it much.

  • sparrow4

    “Why should homosexuals be permitted to impose their beliefs on the rest of this country when it is obvious that most people do not share those beliefs. You would have those beliefs rammed down everyone’s throats, at the same time as you deny people the right to preserve their own sacred beliefs.”They aren’t demanding the right to go into a Mormon church to marry (in fact most would run screaming from the idea), they aren’t telling you to have them in your house for dinner, they aren’t going to rape your children, they aren’t expecting to sleep in your house. So what is your problem? You’re taking offense at someone else having the same rights and privileges of living in this country as you do, even though it does not personally affect you (except in the sense of you not minding your own business). Basically you’re supporting taxation without representation for gays- you may want to reread that American history book to find out about a certain Tea Party before you answer that one.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Mormons regard ALL other Christian churches as apostate. Aggressive Mormon proselytizing is not primarily religious in nature, but a politically hostile act; it is one part of a syndrome of disrespect and intolerance towards others. They are naively unaware. They seek approval and respect, but they would not extend respect to others. They are rock-solid-certain that they are right, and they are just as certain that EVERYONE else is wrong. Therefore, respect and tolerance are not necessary.Even more, Mormon homophobia derives from a theology that is patterned in complex ways to vilify and demonize gay people. It is difficult for an otherwise good Mormon to dislodge his psychic bias against gay people without also pulling apart and dismissing much of Mormon theology. This is probably not an easy thing to do for people who have been indoctrinated into this top-down theology all of their lives. Think how hard it must be for a young gay Mormon. He must remain closeted or he will be ostracized by all that he has ever known and held dear, most of all his family. Even though the Mormon Church says it promotes family and family values, its theological doctrines against gay people are designed to destroy families in which but a single member may emerge as gay, and to destroy lives, even driving people to suicide. This is Mormonism. They are intolerant, intolerant, intolerant. This fact is undeniable and cannot be over-emphasized. They complain and complain about how they should be left alone, free to practice their religion, but they send out armies of missionaries to proselytize the world. Their disrespect for others is complete.And yet they do not understand even the most basic concept of tolerance nor why anyone would seek to promote toleration. I think that, over all, Mormonism is primitive, unsophisticated, and kindergarten stuff. If they want the respect that they think they deserve, then they are due for a little growing up and a little maturity. In the meantime, it is not intolerant to reject intolerance in others. I hope that Mormon readers will not cite my rejection of their intolerance as their justification for it.

  • shellers

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) does not practice polygamy. Any people who practice polygamy are not part of this church. I want to make that clear so that Kert1′s comment does not cause any confusion.

  • kert1

    Once again, marriage is not a right and I’m pretty sure it’s not in the constitution. The marriage laws apply the same to all that apply.What people are trying to do is change the definition and law around marriage.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Kert1Your repeated comment is not relevant.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    BenComThrow your ugly tantrums and rant all you want. This is not settled; this is not over; and it will not be over until gay people have equal rights. What part of that don’t you understand? If wicked mean rants are all the argument you have, then bring it on.I am sorry that you are ticked off; you can just tick back on!

  • jason84109

    So, how did Mormons change the constitution exactly? I heard that Californians (very few of which are Mormon) voted for the change to the Constitution. How could so many be duped? Is it possible that America is just not ready for Gay Marriage?

  • cicerosmithsonian

    I find it very interesting that this article claims that Mormonism has no place in the public discourse. I do not understand the argument of the separation of church and state. Why is it OK for one group of like-minded individuals to group together for a cause, and not OK for another group of like-minded individuals to group together for a cause. Additionally, the Mormon church did not contribute ANY money to this cause (unless you count the $3,000 in travel expenses that was reimbursed). The MEMBERS of the Mormon church did contribute but it is difficult to give the exact amount because religious affiliate is not reported when giving contributions. Certainly, you could claim that the church’s call for members to donate of their time and resources to the cause were indirect actions of the church, but why should they be barred from doing this? The claim by some is that churches benefit from tax exempt status and thus should not be involved in the political discourse, but aren’t there a lot of 501c3′s (including those FOR gay marriage) that are just as involved in the political process. Again, the argument against allowing churches allowing individuals to go out and participate in the democratic process seems to be a ridiculous argument. I find it so interesting that this is ostensibly an arguement about taking away rights. Which RIGHTS were taken away? This law did nothing to take away the rights of domestic unions in California. They have every right a married couple has save being able to call their union MARRIAGE. That is the only RIGHT taken away. I agree that this is a very important right, but please do not argue that this is about RIGHTS when it is about ONE RIGHT.In summary, Mormons accounted for 3% of the vote in California and MAYBE 50% of the funding on the YES on Prop 8 side. The NO on Prop 8 side spent 7 million dollars more and still couldn’t get it done. The fact is that the No on Prop 8 ran a sloppier campaign and was lazy in their approach. Oh, and stop claiming this rediculous homophobic junk. The Mormon church is one of the only churches to specifically claim that homosexuality is NOT a choice in all cases and is part of the genetic make-up of individuals. Missionaries have been harassed, church buildings have been defaced, white powder was mailed to Mormon temples. And yet this is somehow acceptable? What would be the public outcry if these things had been done to the gay community? They would be viewed as hate crimes. Yet somehow doing to the Mormons is acceptable. I saw a sign the other day that said “Give Gays Rights, Silence Mormons”. Hypocrisy indeed.

  • sparrow4

    Well, since its not a right, why do you people lay claim to it like it is? And reread the Constitutional Amendments and Bill of rights, would you? In this country, people can be married in either a civil ceremony or a religious one. Since I am sure gays would rather croak than get married in a Mormon church, and would only do so in Churches that welcomed them, you have nothing to complain about. And since civil ceremonies come from the government, not the Church, you should have no right to say who can and cannot be married in a civil ceremony. You don’t have to like it. All you have to do is obey the law.

  • angiew1

    Thank you for your article, Joel. Mocking sacred things of any religion should not be tolerated. Joel said he went to Lincoln Center because he was “Pro-Liberty, not Anti-Mormon”.Please stop the hatred. While my heart truly goes out to homosexuals who would like to be married, I also stand firm in my belief that a man and a woman make a marriage. While I do not live in California, I would have voted yes for Prop 8 because I am *** pro-marriage, not anti-gay *** .

  • cicerosmithsonian

    And what does protesting the Mormon church do anyway? Shouldn’t your argument be with the California legislature and Supreme Court? Is the Mormon church enforcing the law? Can the Mormon church overturn the law? Or is your tactic simply to so denigrate the church and its members that the Mormons will never want to protest the matter again? Nothing like stifling the public discourse by protesting someone because they voted a certain way. Perhaps you could put all the time spent protesting into serving in the community and seeking understanding. That would probably have a larger effect than hate crimes and protesting a group that can do nothing to change a law.So you try to make your column palatable by calling for rights for all, yet you protest a group because they voted a certain way. Do you see the hypocrisy? Again, why not spend time winning people to your side through understanding, rather than protesting a group because they voted a certain way? The former promotes the democratic process, the later stifles it.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    cicerosmithsonian : FYI, the Mormon Church bankrolled the passage of prop 8. That is what this is all about.

  • sparrow4

    Hey daniel- having trouble posting again.

  • knathom

    I can certainly understand the devastation and disbelief caused by Prop 8 passing. I think it was, quite frankly, a surprise. I can’t imagine someone trying to take away my marriage. I would be stunned and angry. I am also so disappointed that the opposition to Prop 8 is resorting to hate and bigotry to protest. Attacking Mormonism as a religion is wrong. I am frustrated–though not surprised–by the ignorance that is being promoted about Mormons on this comment thread and elsewhere. It tires me to say this but…Mormons don’t participate in plural marriage at all, inside or outside the law. And to resort to statements such as, “Mormonism is primitive, unsophisticated, and kindergarten stuff,” is disrespectful and dismissive. When you resort to statements like that, it devalues your very valid argument.Yes, the Mormon church leadership was very involved and encouraged heavy involvement from its membership. Many members did support it…and many DID NOT! The fallout is predictable, and maybe something the Mormon church leadership should have thought about before they made such a public showing if they don’t like the fallout. However, bigotry is not OK. On either side. Don’t ruin your cause by resorting to such garbage.Although I am hesitant to say it, I am a Mormon woman. I hesitate not out of shame, though I am ashamed of their participation in Prop 8, but because I too fear bigotry. I actively opposed Prop 8. MANY MANY of my Mormon friends also actively opposed it. If you took a vote among Mormon members, I think you’d be surprised how many opposed it. I’m not surprised my religion is bearing the brunt of this, because while it was a joint effort among other churches, they were very public and added enormously to the Prop 8 effort. Also, the fact that Mormons are a minority and misunderstood makes them an extremely easy target. Sort of like gays. Please, I beg you, don’t assume all Mormons oppose gay marriage. Trust me, I understand that my membership in the church will force me to bear the brunt of some of this bigotry. I sadly accept it. And I will continue to promote and vote for gay rights. Don’t sully your argument by resorting to the same bigotry you are fighting against.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    cicerosmithsonian And also, in a legitimate democracy, the rights of minorities are not up for thumbs-up or thumbs-down vote by the majority. Othewise, the Mormon Chuch might be run out of the country.

  • sparrow4

    Maybe this time it goes through? “Why is it OK for one group of like-minded individuals to group together for a cause, and not OK for another group of like-minded individuals to group together for a cause.”**Because in this case it is one group of individuals trying to make another group “less equal.” If gays can marry, it takes nothing away from the Mormons, except in their own minds. Yet the Mormons would make it a law to deny gays the same rights and privileges as they enjoy.”Additionally, the Mormon church did not contribute ANY money to this cause (unless you count the $3,000 in travel expenses that was reimbursed). The MEMBERS of the Mormon church did contribute “**In this case it was a specious ploy by the Church to not take real responsibility for a nasty piece of work, and also not jeopardize their tax status.(sorry if the posts repeat- computer problems.

  • cicerosmithsonian

    DANIELINTHELIONSDENFYI, the Mormon Church DID NOT bankroll the passage of Prop 8. Check your facts. The Mormon church contributed $3,000 in reimbursed travel expenses to the movement. MEMBERS of the Mormon Church gave around $20 million (approximately 50%) of the Yes on Prop 8. There were many others who contributed. The Yes side had $31 million and the No side had $38 million. You could argue that Members gave because the Mormon Church asked them to, but many members of the Mormon church contributed to the No side as well. In fact, an ex-Mormon (Bastian) donated $1 Million to the No side. Bottom-line, the Mormon Church DID NOT bankroll the Yes on 8. And they accounted for 3% of the vote. And why would it matter if the church bankrolled it anyway? Shouldn’t the fact that the No side spent $7 million more on the Prop have helped their side?

  • acebojangles

    What’s wrong with making fun of a ridiculous idea like sacred underwear? Is there no idea that’s ridiculous enough to be made fun of regardless of its religious status?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    cicerosmithsonianIt sounds like you want a fight. Well if you want a fight, then you will get one. This is not over; it will never be over until gay people have equality. You better make plans to spend ALL of your money opposing gays for the rest of your life, and allocating ALL of your time stepping in front of gay people to obstruct their progrss, because as I said, this is not over.

  • cicerosmithsonian

    DANIELINTHELIONSDENHa! Sometimes I feel we are being run out of the country!SPARROW4Asking members to contribute is not some ploy. The Mormon church did not force people to vote for the measure.My argument is not with regard to the measure. I understand this is a difficult issue with deep feelings on both sides. But let us go through the proper democratic channels rather than intimidate others because of the way they voted.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    I agree with Sparrow’s choice of work 100 percent. This is the Mormon Church’s “nasty piece of work.” Rejection of intolerance is not, itself, intolerant. If Mormons do not want to be cast as unsophistocated and childish, then they can grow up, and stop pushing themselves on other gorups with the relentlessly intolerant proselytizing.

  • cicerosmithsonian

    DANIELINTHELIONSDENBless your sweet heart! Explaining facts on a matter is not picking a fight! I just don’t want ignorance and fear to rule decision-making. Let’s make sure we give ALL the facts and let people make up their minds for themselves.You are probably a very bright and kind person and even though we disagree on this matter, it does not diminish the fact that I respect you and your right to believe as you do. Let’s just make sure we give all the facts on a matter and not speak in generalities (all Mormons are bad, homophobic people and the church bankrolled this initiative).You have very deep feelings on the matter and I do too. That does not mean we can’t seek to understand one another. And in the end, we would probably agree to disagree. But let’s be agreeable about it.:)

  • sparrow4

    cicerosmithsonian- trying to get a measure passed that is in basis unconstitutional, because a small majority voted for it is an abuse of the democratic process. And despite what the voters decided, if the law does not meet the criteria of constitutionality, it won’t stand. But in the meantime, it will inflict much pain and cost millions on both sides to fight it. With everything we are facing as a country today, i don’t see how this makes sense. today the times said government studies showed hunger in children increased 50% last year. 5-% in the richest country in the world- before the financial crisis! Yet people want to waste their time funding idiocy like Prop8. Go figure.KNATHOM- thank you for your post. It was nice to get a new perspective from within the Mormon Church. with so many fundamentalist voices being the loudest, I guess we forget that there are more moderate and tolerant voices out there.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    cicerosmithsonianYou were previously extremely hostile. Now you have put on your “good manners.” Should I be impressed? Actions speak louder than words. So you feel like you are being run out the country? Then why do the Mormon missionary “boys” keep knocking on my door?Actions speak louder than words, or good manners.

  • cicerosmithsonian

    ha! Again, I think you are reading my comments as more hostile than they are. Reread the posts and ask where these really hostile or where they more facts about a particular viewpoint. I will do the same. And if I did become more “good mannered” I do not apologize. It’s probably better to change your approach when a conversation is becoming heated than continue to be hostile. Wouldn’t you agree?

  • sparrow4

    cicerosmithsonian- the number of rights we’re discussing isn’t important. what is important is that in this country we all have the same rights- deny one group even one right, and the can of worms you open will be huge. And it pays to remember, what you do to one can be also done to you. If you believe in freedom of religion, you can’t expect it just for yourself. You have to accept in for others. If you think you can bequeath all but one civil right to a group based on prejudice, there will come a time when that very same thing will happen to you because you will have established a legal (but not necessarily constitutional) precedent. Once you open that door to cherry-picking rights, you’ll wind up in the same position.

  • CCNL

    No doubt many California voters think that homosexual sexual activity is to say the least, very yucky. Other than that, one assumes proper sanitary and cleaning procedures will keep homosexuals disease-free/guilt free or will they??

  • knathom

    CCNLSeems you really want people to read that since you posted it twice. We got it. Homosexual sex is a homosexual’s business, and no one else’s. I have no desire to know what goes on in anyone else’s bedroom, and I certainly don’t want anyone invading mine. Also, it has absolutely no relevance to this discussion.

  • dummypants

    seperate church and state?im afriad this is not a seperation issue, my friend.you can’t say that codifying a particular moral view violates church and state simply because that moral view is endorsed and taught by one or many religions.did many abolitionists not employ religious rhetoric?isnt environmental concern growing among certain evangelical churches?can’t you find support for charity, progressive system of taxation or the welfare state in the teachings of many christian denominations?are abolition, evironmental legsialtion, or income redistribution violative of the seperation of church and state?sorry bud, yelling “church and state” in a crowded room is nothing more than an attempt to shut off debate on an issues where you think your side is losing–rightly or wrongly.remember, the constitution was no more about saying what was right or wrong, as deciding for what matters such an answer could be given, and what matters were better left to the political process, the answer of right and wrong to be decided anew every election by citizens.the voters of california have spoken, and there is absolutely nothing in the 1st amendment that suggests their will should be overturned.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    cicerosmithsonianYou said homosexuality is a sin. That is just a way of name-calling, like saying someone is fat or ugly. So you justify your homophobia by hiding behind religion, by hiding behind the “personage” of Jesus, whom you suppose agrees with you?The condemnation of a whole group of people with the word “sin” is ridiculous, absurd, mean-spirited, and childish. So what does that mean, that gay people are “inferior?” that they should be kept segregated and apart? that they should be punished? or worse? GROW UP, why don’t you?What if I were to say that it is a sin to be a Mormon? Many people think that. Are you so ego-centric that you cannot imagine how unjust your accuaation is, as is likewise theirs?I know of cases, several in fact, where the Mormon missionary boys have mangaged to peel off a single member of a family to become Mormon. Then what happens in that family? They are ashamed of their “Mormon” relative, and do not want anyone to know. They want to continue in a loving relationship, but the awful shame of the Mormon “taint” has ruined their family forever.This is a fact. But yet, you who are regarded in this way, see nothing wrong, nor ironic in regarding gay people in EXACTLY the same way?You say that Mormons voted the way they wanted to. But that is not really true is it? Isn’t there a top-down command of belief and action that motivates Mormons, at least “Mormons in good standing?”Isn’t there always the threat of ex-communication for “wrong-thinking?” The Mormon church hierarchy has demonized and vilified gay people, and inculcated this FALSE view into the hearts of Mormons all their lives. So, what “choice” do they have? The whole thing seems a little “communitstic?” doesn’t it? a little “fascististic?” perhaps? Think about it.Will your rejoinder be to protest slander of your religious beliefs? Beliefs which are slanderous and insulting to other people? You and your church are caught up in a “tangled web” of your own “weaving.”

  • achandler1

    cicerosmithsonian:You made a technical error. You said:”The claim by some is that churches benefit from tax exempt status and thus should not be involved in the political discourse, but aren’t there a lot of 501c3′s (including those FOR gay marriage) that are just as involved in the political process.”There are NO 501(c)3s advocating for gay marriage that’re just as involved in the political process. 501(c)3s, by law, cannot do that. Only 501(c)4s (as well as 527s and PACs) can. Last time I checked, the LDS church is not a (c)4, a 527 or a PAC — it’s a 501(c)3 religious institution. When LDS leaders instructed ward and stake leaders to read that four-paragraph decree/instruction to ward members, it either went right up to the line or — many believe — crossed the line entirely for a (c)3.

  • cyberfool

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;I 100% believe that gays should be able to marry. However, the “separation of church and state” is not what most people think it is. In fact, prior to the 14th amendment, states could have official religions, etc. It was a limit on Congressional power only. I think folks would be on a stronger 1st Amendment footing if they approached it from the standpoint that their religion allows the marrying of gays. That way the religious practice of gay marriage (say UnUn) is being denied. A progressive court would strike down Prop 8 on the basis of prohibiting the free exercise.

  • chrisewarner

    I am happ that no on 8 people found a minority group to direct their anger of the democratic process at, but everyone needs to remember that the Mormon church didn’t pass this law. I am a catholic and my church was also very much in support of this. The members of the mormon church gave alot to support this, but money doesn’t pass laws, if it did, prop 8 would have been defeated. The no on 8 group raised 7 million dollars more than the yes group. And remember no matter what position the mormons support they are a very small minority in California, It took the people of California voting for this for it to pass. Mormons have spent alot of money on advertising for their church and sending out missionaries, but 52% of California did not become mormon. We are forgetting that people think for themselves and stood by themselves in the voting booth, there were no mormons forcing their hands. and 52% of Californians decided to protect the sanctity of marriage.

  • marcedward1

    1) The governments role in marriage is that of creating a legal contract. Discrimination based on sex is illegal and wrong. The government has no place deciding which adults can marry, period.In short, people who are against gay marriage are bigots, no better than the people who opposed blacks and white marrying. You all have no place in modern America. Maybe you all should move to Iran or Saudi Arabia where your views are in vogue.

  • ThishowIseeit

    Bet it will not be too long before a panel of State Judges will find Proposition 8 unconstitutional.

  • marimiller

    The author claims that the Mormon church bankrolled the proposition. Has she checked s/he checked his/ her source? I have read numbers ranging from 35-80% of donations were from Mormons. That’s a big spread. Where are these numbers coming from? It is irresponsible journalism to claim such things without verifying the numbers, or even citing where they are coming from.

  • Freestinker

    “We are forgetting that people think for themselves and stood by themselves in the voting booth, there were no mormons forcing their hands. and 52% of Californians decided to protect the sanctity of marriage.”ChriseWarner,52% of Californians decided that the law should unfairly discriminate against same-sex couples. 52% of Californians decided to impose a majority religious opinion on everybody else.If they had voted to “protect the sanctity of marriage” for all, they would have voted NO on Prop 8. So let’s be clear about what happenned. Religious discrimination won, Marriage lost, at least for now … and your narrow majority of 52% will not last long so you better enjoy your shallow victory while you still can!

  • ssgmorley

    It’s funny how you can say you’re not anti-Mormon when all the Mormon church did was stand up for what it believed to be true. California only has 2.21% of Mormons but Mormons are being held accountable for 90% of the blame. Can we help it if we are good at organizing and good at fighting for what we believe in. You can say how we forced our view on the country but 52% of the state agreed with the coalition of churches on this issue, so how is that forced? We didn’t protest outside gay bars or vandalize their property. We didn’t sling slurs and malign their faith as so many of them have to us. The tolerance problem is in the homosexual community with their social terrorism and coercive tactics to force others into believing their point of view. Lastly we didn’t have big media outlets and one sided news articles like this one to support us we did it by doing what we do best work. You claimed we lied how did we lie, every time homosexuals win recognition they automatically force themselves into schools campus, government policies, and try to strong arm churches who don’t support them. You say Massachusetts is different then California but for how long? The things that happen their didn’t happen overnight but they were brought to pass by the court ruling. Seems to me the only one lying is you.

  • Freestinker

    SSGMORLEY,If gays and lesbians were trying to take away your Constitutional rights (like you took theirs) I guarantee you would be protesting too!

  • sparrow4

    dummypants:”you can’t say that codifying a particular moral view violates church and state simply because that moral view is endorsed and taught by one or many religions.did many abolitionists not employ religious rhetoric?isnt environmental concern growing among certain evangelical churches?”** You need to reread the constitution AND Bill of rights, my friend. there are certain basic rights- to life =, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (within reason of course) and many principles laid out that cannot be abrogated without a constitutional amendment. whether or not one or many religions preach something, if they try to turn it into law and it is inherently unconstitutional, the law will be overturned.Prop 8 is religious bigotry, not law. If it goes to the Supreme court, it will be overturned. This is what happened in Roe v wade- the constitution is the overriding law of the land. You cannot pass any old law you want simply because the majority votes for it. It has to pass constitutional criteria. that’s the way it works. As the Illinois Supreme court once said about the Constitution:” It is precisely for the protection of the minority that constitutional limitations exist. Majorities need no such protection. They can take care of themselves.”

  • chrisewarner

    I love that a group that has celebrating diversity and promoting tolerance as their motto, has become the group promoting hate. The real idea is celebrate our gay lifestyles, hate religious people and their diverse views. We should “celebrate diversity” when we all think the same way and that way is in line with gay people. We should engage in protests of hate against groups that think differently. This issue is not about civil rights, it is about legitimizing sexually deviancy, and hating anyone that won’t embrace that deviancy. 52% of people in california, along with the large number of other states that have passed laws against gay marriage did so not because they hate gay people, or because they want to take away rights, it is because homosexuality is a practice that the people of america do not condone and will not support. People can choose to be gay, but the rest of us can choose to not support that decision. Everyone in this country has the “right” to get married. Go find someone of the opposite sex and marry them. If you decide to be gay then you don’t have to get married. But we will not change the definition of marriage to make you feel better about your sexually deviancy. Now have the tolerance to respect our ideas that are diverse from yours. Lets celebrate that this country still has some moral values left and can say that homosexuality is wrong.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    ssgmorleyKeep telling your BIG lie and maybe you will start believing it, yourself.The way you tell it, straight people are the minority and gay people pick on and bully straight people. But it is the other way around.Gay people are picked on and beat up on all their lives, and then, when they speak up to ask for their rights, then they are demonized and vilified.Please tell me one incident in your life where gay people bullyied and terrorized you. And then, if you can’t think of one, please shut up!

  • ssgmorley

    Oh if you need confirmation on the slurs and social terrorism that is going on just read the posts to your article. It doesn’t sound like many YES on 8 supporters understand civility or kindness they just want what they couldn’t get at all costs. Sounds like a recipe for war and conflict, with them taking the first shots. It’s funny how most Americans are unwilling to be patriotic in a time of war but they like to pick fights when they think the other person won’t hit back. (Just a prediction)this protesting and constent pushing of hate filled remarks is going to make somebody go postal. I also don’t think many like my self will be simpathetic when it happens.

  • coloradodog

    Mormons deserve no respect nor tears. Their agenda, like the intolerant white evangelical Annie Oakley of the North, is a neochristian theocracy for the United States where they dictate what is “God’s Standards” for the rest of us. They contributed money directly to anti-gay campaigns in California (before this one), Alaska and Hawaii and used their material resources and choke hold on their members to influence Proposition 8. For this, their tax exempt status should be revoked. There are a dishonest, intolerant group who themselves used elecrto-shock torture to “cure” their gays at BYU and by private bishopric referrals including the use of homosexual and heterosexual pornography with children as young as 15.

  • dcbuck

    As a gay man, I was outraged by the passage of Prop 8. But, what is equally outraging to me is the hypocrisy by which many protesters have decided to engage in. I’ll give credence to this group when I see protests in front of black churches and in front of churches with a predominantly Hispanic congregation. Both of these groups (especially blacks) were just as, if not more instrumental in its passage. How can we expect equality unless we hold ALL those who want to deny us that equality accountable? Until then, this just exposes the left-centered, uber-P.C. gay establishment for who they really are.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarnerThank you so much for your dirty nasty comments about gay people. You are a perfect example of gay bashing homophobia. Why are you so worried about gay people picking on you? has a gay person ever picked on you, bullied you, terrorized you, struck you? stolen from you? blackmailed you? pushed you down a flight of stairs? You are the bully, and people like you,. not gay people.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen”Why are you so worried about gay people picking on you?”This isn’t my concern at all, I’m not afraid of gay people picking on me, I’m afraind of sending the message that choosing homosexuality is acceptable. As much as people want to seperate law and morility, they are very much intwined. Allowing gay marriage, is sending a message that it is okay to choose to be gay. I firmly believe that that is a bad choice and one that is not good for the country. Like I said in my previous “hateful” post, people can choose to be gay, I don’t want to force people to be straight, BUT allowing people the option to make a bad choice doesn’t mean we need to condone or support that bad choice, and legitimize the sexually deviancy of choosing to be gay.

  • sparrow4

    dcbuck- you haven’t been reading the papers- there have been protests (and nastiness) of black and hispanic church supporters of Prop8″But we will not change the definition of marriage to make you feel better about your sexually deviancy. Now have the tolerance to respect our ideas that are diverse from yours. Lets celebrate that this country still has some moral values left and can say that homosexuality is wrong.”Spoken like a true religo-fascist. You want tolerance for your small-minded, insulting, bigoted ideas so you celebrate your “diversity.” Do you even read what you write? Does it not occur to you that since you are not extending tolerance or respect to the gay community, perhaps you shouldn’t be looking for any in return? You will no doubt take offense is your religious beliefs are seen as the ravings of a group of cult fanatics, but homosexuals are not human beings, or fellow Americans- they are only “sexual deviants.” Hmmmm…..what’s wrong with that picture? How very “Christian” of you.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarnerIn repeating that gay people choose to be gay, you are showing your ignorance. Maybe you should not even be commenting on things that you do not understand.If sexual orientation is choice, then tell us all about how you made your choice, the day that it happened, how you felt about it, the pro’s and con’s, the difficulty of making up your mind and all of that.Once again, religion is not an excuse for bigotry. That is the beginning and the end of the discussion. If you don’t like it, then you better learn to like it, because that is how it is; and that is how it going to be. If the rights of people infringe on your religeious beliefs, well then you are an exceptionally sensitive person, and maybe you should try and get over it, or else seek therapy.

  • agapn9

    Actually its the courts that have decided to join church and state. They have made a arraignment between two people of the same sex equivalent to a union between a man and woman. The courts overrode the church definition of marriage, and the church and its constitutents have gone into the public forum and said you can’t do that – your power doesn’t extend into that area. You can’t make a homosexual union a morally acceptable lifestyle nor can you call it what people deem morally acceptable – marriage.While I believe gays are entitled to shared property rights and medical care rights from their partners – marriage is a different story.

  • ssgmorley

    why danielinthelionsden, here is your example “YOU”…. You think you’re so very tough behind a keyboard. How many times have you been beat up cause your gay and don’t count the times you mouthed off cause you thought you were cool and picked a fight with the wrong person. I never said that straight people are now being bullied. What I said was that homosexuals cry a good game to get sympathy (like you) but in reality they hate and terrorize like everyone they said did it to them. So your right homosexuals are like everyone else in the sense they are just as idiotic, rude, and disgusting as the next guy. What I am standing up for is; you want me to vote for your supposed rights maybe you shouldn’t spit in my face. The people your fighting against are only getting tougher by the day in their cause because of how your attacking them. I have many friends from California going to school with me, each one voted NO. Guess what they have changed their minds after hearing and seeing what they have seen. You think they are alone but good luck in converting people like me and them to your cause after all this.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    ssgmorleyYour gay hating, homophobic rant is EXACTLY my point, and the problem. The fact that gay people got born is not the problem; you are the problem.

  • sparrow4

    chrisewarner- of course you understand that is your own personal religious opinion. Shared by others of your ilk- but nonetheless, it’s an opinion based on your fundamentalist beliefs. Many others of us don’t feel this way- and please, let’s not get into my religion is better than yours- we have different opinions based on our faiths (or ism), and some of us are agnostics or atheists or pagans or buddhists, etc. That’s the beauty of this country. We’re all equal here, we all have the right to free speech- we can open our mouths, stick our feet in there, sound like morons, spew hate and ignorance. BUT- we have that right.what we don’t have is the right to make others “less” equal. So your misbegotten idea that homosexuality is a result of sexual deviancy still cannot be used to take away rights from gays. Allowing gays to marry may offend your refined religious sensibilities, but that’s all it does. whereas what you would do inflicts serious emotional, financial and legal pain on a large number of your fellow Americans. There is no comparison in terms of rights.sanctity of marriage? Oh, what? Do Mormons not get divorced? From what I know, they do indeed. 50% of marriages in this country end in divorce- I think heteros are doing a slam bang up job destroying the so-called “sanctity” of marriage all by themselves. Blaming any of this on gay people is the utmost expression of blindness and lack of responsibility I have ever heard of.Don’t like gay people- stay away from them. They’ll be very appreciative.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Let’s play a game:What is worse, to be gay, or to be a Mormon?

  • danny6

    This article presumes that the only kind of reason anyone could have for supporting traditional marriage is a religious one. Otherwise, the church-state argument would have no clout. But this is simply not the case. There are lots of non-religious reasons for supporting traditional heterosexual marriage. For my own argument on this, please see: Also, let’s not forget that one of the greatest civil rights defenders in American history, Martin Luther King, Jr., constantly used religion in his advocacy for equal rights for blacks. However, when we look back, we don’t say, “Why didn’t he keep his private religious beliefs to himself! Who did he think he was, trying to get his religious belief written into the law?”

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    SparrowYou are wrong, we’re not all equal; Mormons are superior to everyone else.

  • coloradodog

    ssgmorley and chrisewarner:May God bless you with a gay child or grandchild to open your ugly closed hearts.

  • ssgmorley

    Danielinthelionsden, could you tell me where you got the gene for being homosexual from. Your mom or your dad? Are your brothers and sisters gay? The only way for it not to be a choice is if its a heredity trait which is usually easy to find and predict. Homosexuality isn’t; anyone can say they are gay, bi-sexual, or go bestiality. Look at Lindsey Lohan I didn’t know that you could do everything. Ellen DeGeneres first high profile partner isn’t she now straight. I don’t care if you chose to be or if you believe you were made that way, I just don’t want you or your friends to force your habits on us. I agree with a earlier post you can have the probate rights, the medical visitation and all that but your shouldn’t be able to say to any church my marriage is legal so you have to accept me.. Why do I say that look at a site called Affirmation; whose whole goal is to force their gayness on the Mormon church. So how does the Mormon church respond, by preventing laws from forcing them to change their beliefs.

  • DogpatchMB

    Well Joel I’m glad you spoke out on your own feelings. For a while we thought you were a Watchtower shill. You did a glowing documentary for them, but they still think you’re an enemy of Jehovah. But after all, they “don’t hate you, just your sin.” Channeled hate is now the “in” thing. JWS and Mormons are the “Carnivale” of the 20th century, invented and perpetuated by power hucksters. So your work will be valuable in the 21st century in seeing the depth of religious deception that we tolerated as starry-eyed Americans.

  • marcedward1

    DanielintheLionsDen writesNot sure what you mean. Once you start trying to take away people’s civil rights, you are un-American, period.

  • chrisewarner

    “of course you understand that is your own personal religious opinion. Shared by others of your ilk- but nonetheless, it’s an opinion based on your fundamentalist beliefs. Many others of us don’t feel this way- and please, let’s not get into my religion is better than yours- we have different opinions based on our faiths (or ism), and some of us are agnostics or atheists or pagans or buddhists, etc. That’s the beauty of this country. We’re all equal here, we all have the right to free speech- “But isn’t that the nature of politics, is that the nature of democracy. It is an understanding that although we don’t all agree, we all have a say, we get to choose what path we think is best for ourselves and our country, then we vote on that path and the ideas of the majority are carried out. I believe that homosexuality is bad for individuals and for the country and apparently 52% of Californians and others in america that have passes similar laws do to, so we voted what we think is best and we are going that way. I also believe in free markets and less govt. intervention, I know others disagree, but I vote what I think is best for me and my country. “sanctity of marriage? Oh, what? Do Mormons not get divorced? From what I know, they do indeed. 50% of marriages in this country end in divorce- I think heteros are doing a slam bang up job destroying the so-called “sanctity” of marriage all by themselves”yes, marriage is under attack on many fronts, but that doesn’t mean we should give up the fight. As i said above, i am for free markets and less govt intervention. The policeies we have won’t be perfect in that realm, nor will they be with important issues like marriage, but I won’t give up the fight, I am against anything that attackes the sanctity of marriage.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarner Your post was very ignorant. Maybe you should open a book and get some learnin’ before further embarassing yourself with more of this ridiculous dreak.

  • sparrow4

    “Martin Luther King, Jr., constantly used religion in his advocacy for equal rights for blacks. However, when we look back, we don’t say, “Why didn’t he keep his private religious beliefs to himself! Who did he think he was, trying to get his religious belief written into the law?” Because, as you say, “used religion in his advocacy for equal rights” which Blacks by constitutional law did have. It was in practice they did not. You might also note, the KKK doesn’t have a great reputation. would churches like to be in their illustrious company in the annals of history? MLK used religion for a postive purpose, not a negative one.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen”Your post was very ignorant. Maybe you should open a book and get some learnin’ before further embarassing yourself with more of this ridiculous dreak.”thank you for your deep insight, But I have yet to see how my post is so “ignorant”. Please enlighten me.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    ssgmorley What a fool you are. So now, not hating gay people makes you gay.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarner I cannot make you unclench your heart. I cannot open your eyes so that you may see. You must do those things yourself.

  • chrisewarner

    coloradodog : “May God bless you with a gay child or grandchild to open your ugly closed hearts.”I understand that children including my own may make bad decision, they may choose to do drugs, or even kill people, but that will not change my firm belief that those things are wrong. And I will certaintly continue to fight against the government taking a stance on saying that homosexuality is okay, because that would distort the moral foundation for our rising generation when they are faced with the those around them claiming that the sexual deviancy of homosexuality is acceptable.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen : “I cannot make you unclench your heart. I cannot open your eyes so that you may see. You must do those things yourself.”If you can’t change our hearts, then why keep protesting outside our churches.

  • ssgmorley

    dainelinthelionsden and the other gays out there is everything not gay loving a homophobic rant. If I was homophobic I would say you brought us Aids, or maybe something like don’t come near me your going to make me gay. Since I didn’t say that and I don’t care what most of you idiots think…The debate is never going to sway most religious people to your side why because your all just asses. You can’t actually debate or come up with anything other than slurs. If you want to round up Mormons and send them away fine with me. One of Hitler’s highest ranking SS officer is a confirmed homosexual so it’s not so far a stretch that it would happen again. Oh but your group has already co-oped world war two wording of fascism; so what should I use? Go ahead and do your worst in the end you and yours will get nothing but the same.

  • marcedward1

    ssgmorley writes So at some point in your life, being gay and being straight were equally attractive to you, and you chose being straight over being gay?I think your argument is BS. Long before I was a teenager i was interested in seeing naked women (thanks for not hiding the playboys very well dad!). My kids are very interested in old Victoria’s Secret catalogs and not interested in naked men.

  • BenCom

    marcedward1 Can anyone say “intolerance”? Why is it that religious people, like Mormons, who oppose gay marriage are labeled “bigots” and worthy of being run out of the country (see marcedward1′s comment) while gay rights activists are some of the most intolerant among us? It is a double standard and it is worse than playing the race card because race is a legitimate, recognized civil right, unlike marriage.

  • ssgmorley

    marcedward1

  • dummypants

    School in Session:you said:”Let’s see….. hhmmmmm???gay rights versus dirty old white male paedophiles who subjugate their women in a cult of perversion? Folks get a grip. Better to outlaw mormons and their perverted plural paedophile marraiges.”couple of things here:1. the LDS officially renounced polygamy in the 19th century. that is, well over 100 years ago. unless you have evidence that LDS members practice polygamy (preferably evidence that they practice it on a wide scale) then you’re basically just spreading misinformation. Maybe you’re thinking of Warren Jeffs, who was not a member of the LDS, rather he was the head of a break away, fundamentalist splinter group, whose numbers were dwarfed by the numbers of the LDS. Moreover, the LDS have consistently and loudly denounced Warran Jeffs, and his splinter group, for their practice of polygamy.2. Why do you mention “old white men”? even if Warren Jeffs was a member of LDS, why should it matter that he is old, white, or a man? I think you need to answer that question first and foremost, least you lose any and all credibility in this forum. whats wrong with old white men?

  • hakafos44

    Picket at the church headquarters because that is where this all started. And do so with respect and dignity like Gandhi and MLK. The church membership followed the dictates of the leadership and, even then, not all of them did. Interrupting worship services will not win converts but may breed enemies.

  • chrisewarner

    “Picket at the church headquarters because that is where this all started. And do so with respect and dignity like Gandhi and MLK. The church membership followed the dictates of the leadership and, even then, not all of them did. Interrupting worship services will not win converts but may breed enemies.”Yes, let’s do it. The people of California decided to vote against saying its okay to be gay. So let’s attack the mormon church for standing up against homosexuality and making gay people feel bad. While your there can you hold up a sign protesting their stance on stealing, I downloaded a couple of illegal songs, and they are making me feel bad with their hate speach against theft. I will not rest until the government and all religions tell me that all my choices are right and good. We must unite against such hatred.

  • marcedward1

    ssgmorley writesIt’s “you’re” not “your” nitwit.’gay’Never said I was gay nitwit.”I never said anything about me choosing’You said being gay was a choice. Obviously for you gay sex and straight sex were equally attractive and you chose to be striaght. For me there was no choice as I was always attracted to women and never attracted to men.

  • captclamdigger

    I just want to compliment Joel on a nicely articulated viewpoint on the overall situation and second KNATHOM as well. The whole situation from both sides needs to be given more of the Golden Rule treatment and Joel and KNATHOM have both done that.Given the high volume of mindless banter on this thread, I have hesitated many times in posting, but here goes…For background purposes only: I am a lifetime active member of the LDS faith and I am a High Priest in the church (being a High Priest does not mean I am a church authority or that I speak for the church or have any special position that makes my opinions more important than others – it solely should be interpreted to mean that I am active and quite participatory in the full slate of church activities and practices). I also would have voted against Prop-8.I hold no grudges against those who are protesting our churches and I sympathize with them to a certain extent. I do wish that more emphasis would be noted to the other groups besides Mormons who voted for Prop-8, but I also enjoy seeing people exercising their civil liberties to make their opinions known in a peaceful and constructive way. I am disappointed in those who choose to violate Mormon civil liberties to protest the participation of members of the church in sabotaging their civil liberties. That is counter-productive.There are many people in the church who support both sides of this issue, personally I fall on the side of supporting gay rights; I support equal rights for all groups for that matter. I have received shocked stares from people in the church who didn’t realize that I am a closet social liberal and I have spent plenty of meetings biting my tongue when individual members have made comments that I have felt to be ignorant. But I am not the only one and from these threads it appears that people do not really understand the multitude of opinions and attitudes of the members of the church.In all of this though, the church leadership is quite careful to not drive the opinions that many members have on these matters. They actively leave us free to take our own stances on political issues. Case in point, the US Senate Majority Leader is a Mormon and I would guess that as a liberal democrat, he is quite supportive of gay rights (however, I have not bothered to study Sen. Reids positions so feel free to confirm his positions yourself) and that his record flies in the face of many of the misperceptions on this list.I do not appreciate the excessive hostility of some of the posters to this thread and for their comments that are not supportable if they actual researched our faith, but I am glad to see that their ability to blast my faith and ridicule my beliefs are not at all hindered by our government. So, please continue to denigrate the things I find to be sacred and I will continue to support your rights to do so.

  • achandler1

    CHRISEWARNER:Homosexuality’s a “sexual deviation”? You obviously haven’t been keeping up the latest in in ever-growing body of research that’s saying what we homos have known all along — that homosexuality is no more of a “deviance” than heterosexuality is. SSGMORLEY:You seem to believe that one of the goals of the marriage equality movement is to gain leverage that allows us to force churches to perform marriages. That’s completely untrue. In MA and CT, you don’t see gays and lesbians trying to force socially/theologically conservative churches to marry them. To the contrary, they choose to get married in churches that’re open and accepting of their marriages, and they avoid those that aren’t.I grew up as a Jehovah’s Witness. I went door-to-door every weekend as a kid and young adolescent. Going into my teenage years, until I was 17, I was closeted, but still active with the JWs. I know what it feels like to be picked on on the basis of your religion (as many Mormons no doubt are). When I was younger, I never tried to force my JW beliefs on others who disagreed. As an out gay man, I don’t try to force my beliefs on churches who disagree with my “lifestyle.” And I know other gay and lesbian folks in the two states they can get married in likewise don’t try to force their marriages on churches that disagree.

  • chrisewarner

    achandler1″Homosexuality’s a “sexual deviation”? You obviously haven’t been keeping up the latest in in ever-growing body of research that’s saying what we homos have known all along — that homosexuality is no more of a “deviance” than heterosexuality is. “Your wrong, I know all about it, PAGANPLACE explained it to me a few posts down all about the intricate dance of hormones. He still hasn’t answered my follow up so maybe you can help with your acces to the “latest research in the ever-growing body of research” how do you explain pedophiles, and bi-sexual people, were they born that way too, was the same “intricate dance of hormones” at play with them?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    ssgmorley What a bitter nasty fellow you are. Your religious faith does not seem to be doing you any good. You feel bad and you want everyone else to feel bad too. You are building yourself up by tearing everyone else down.What a great example of Christian Love. I am sure the “personage” of Jesus Christ would be very pleased with you, sitting up there on some “higher celestial planet” on his throne.

  • chrisewarner

    Thanks for clarifying PAGANPLACE, it is interesting how you strongly believe that people have to be born homosexual, yet can easily dismiss pedophiles as a social disorder and blame in on how they were raised. It merely shows that people can distort are naturally sexuall desires, the same way that homosexual people can distort their natural desires towards members of their same sex, or the way you can be attracted to both sexes. It shows that it is a choice, and it is a choice that we cannot condone or support. Asking for gay marriage, is asking for the govt. to tell you that your choice was good, protesting churches for not agreeing is asking for them to tell you your choice was good. I am very sorry that people make bad choices, but we must stand up for what is right and accept that it will hurt the feelings of those that made bad choices.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Pagenplace,Don’t try to explain any of this to Chrisewarner; he’s a Mormon; he knows everything there is to know about homosexuality; he’s a real expert on the subject; we should all take notes.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Being gay is not a choice, and it is not bad. It is not a crime and it hurts no one. Gay people are simply everyone’s victims, everyone’s scapegoat. You cast all blame for every bad thing in the world on gay people. With all of the religious dissention in the world, at least people of all faiths can agree on one thing: hatred of the gays. I am sure that when Jesus Christ came to earth, that was primarily what he had in mind, because if we could somehow get rid of those nasty awful gay people, then everything would be ok.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDenI appreciate your comments, it is fascinitating that you are so quick to stop the conversation, I ask again then the question you left unanswered. If there is no hope in changing our minds why protest outside our churches. And if you just want to protest to vent frustration I suggest you protest America and our idea of democracy, how dare we allow the people of this country to vote on what they feel is right.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen:”Being gay is not a choice, and it is not bad. It is not a crime and it hurts no one”I understand your position on that, but understand that not everyone agrees, 52% of Californians and many other people in many other states disagree, which is why we put it to a vote. Also it is not a crime to be gay, that’s not what prop 8 is about, it is about legitimizing a sexually deviancy. There are many bad choices that are not illegal, but that does not mean we need to legitimize and support that bad choices. “least people of all faiths can agree on one thing: hatred of the gays.”We should not hate gay people just as we should not hate those who steal, those who lie, or those who commit adultery. Jesus didn’t hate those people either, but he did command them to stop sinning, and he told them that out of love. It is out of my love for all people and for this country that I say, let’s not uphold this practice, it is bad for people individually and it is bad for our country.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarnerI have never protested in front of any Mormon church, nor any Church, although I have attended Mormon church services as a guest. I am merely commenting here. You are the one who asked me to comment on how you are ignorant. You are far, far too ignorant on this subject for me to give you any kind useful corrective instruction here. The one plaintive cry that I hear repeated endlessly by Mormons whenever one of their “controversies” comes to the fore, is this:”…you do not understand my religion; you do not know what you are talking about; maybe you should learn more about my religion is before making any comments on it, and judging me.”That is the automatic elastic clause for getting out of any moral or logical difficulty.I think I understand the Mormon Church pretty well. And in the same way the you disapprove of gay people, I disapprove of Mormons. (I love Mormons, I just hate their church).The same argument holds true for you. You obviously know ZERO about gay people and gay matters; discuss it at church with people who are equally ignorant, but when you come to a forum such as this, just a tiny, tiny bit of knowledge would be helpful.

  • CCNL

    Homosexual sexual activities are everyone’s business since said activities affect our health insurance rates as do all STDs from sexual activies of all those involved with multiple sexual partners, straight or gay.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen : “I think I understand the Mormon Church pretty well. And in the same way the you disapprove of gay people, I disapprove of Mormons. (I love Mormons, I just hate their church).”I’m glad you understand then, that it is possible to love people but hate what they do. I imagine that if there was a vote to require the govt. support and add legitimacy to the mormon church you would vote against it, and you would do that while saying that you love the people you just don’t want to support their church. This is what prop 8 is about, go about your gay life style continue to do whatever you would like, but when there is a vote on whether the govt. should support and legitimize that lifestyle that i disagree with then i will vote against it.

  • sparrow4

    and to continue:** Excuse me? Have you actually read any American History? Abolition was a fight to remove slavery- which was unconstitutional and if you know your history you would know how it originally came to be tolerated despite the constitution. Think Dred Scott.By the same token your position in society under the law is not “more equal” than mine. Your religious opinion regarding homosexuality has no more importance under the law than a homosexual’s right to live with a spouse. No matter if Gays marry or not, you are still free to practice your faith, marry who, when and where you wish, and be as bigoted as you like. And so are they.**No- actually, your reasoning is.

  • coloradodog

    chrisewarner: If the Church of Latter Day Saints (keep poor old Jesus out of this fray, would you?) is so supportive of gays why doesn’t Brother Otterson apologize for (or even acknowledge)the fact that the Church has electro-shocked gay Mormons as young as 15 to “cure” them.If the Pope can acknowledge and ask forgiveness for the damage his church caused to little boys, why can’t Mormons do the same?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarnerI was being sarcastic.Love the sinner, hate the sin is a perversion of Christian love. It is a way to get out of fulfilling your Christian obligations to love your neighbor. Turning a cold and frigid shoulder towards your neighbor is not Christian. Go ahead and keep this passive-aggressive mantra, but don’t call it Christian, because it is not.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDen”Love the sinner, hate the sin is a perversion of Christian love”Thank you, i didn’t realize that you were also an expert on christianity. I don’t think we need to go to the bible for the answer, but since you brought it up. when a woman taken in adultery was about to be stoned, Jesus said let him that is without sin cast the first stone. Jesus did not condone killing the woman, but that doesn’t mean Jesus condoned adultery, He said to the woman, go and sin no more. So I would not “throw rocks” literally or figuratively at gay people, but i also say “go and sin no more.”

  • MylesC

    Marriage is not a civil right. It is established by societies to reward or promote those behaviors that are in the best interest of the society. Currently society believes that it should reward heterosexual couples for forming relationships. Why? Because heterosexual couples are more likely to produce children (not 100% of the time because of infertility or choice). Whereas homosexual relationships will never produce children. Children are essential to the continuation of the society.Those groups that are in favor of the traditional definition of marriage are not saying that gays can’t love each other or even participate in whatever behavior that they want to (in their private lives). Nor are these groups asking that gays should be denied their “real” civil rights like equal access to public places, medical care, job security, housing rights, etc. I would even venture to say that a vast majority of those who are in favor of traditionl marriage would stand up against the violence and threats that gays often (unfortunately) experience.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Being gay is not a sin and it is not a life style anymore than being obese is a sin or a life style, or anymore than being Mormon is a sin or a lifestyle.

  • chrisewarner

    If it the taxt exempt status of the mormon church were put to a vote, would you vote for or against it? I’m sure I know the answer so we can proceed. Now you would vote against it because you do not want to support a cause of which you don’t agree. a vote against such status wouldn’t mean you hate mormons, or that being mormon should be illegal, it would mean you don’t want the government to support something you don’t agree with. The people of california chose to vote against the govt supporting something they don’t agree with, continue to be gay, but the people of california should not have to support that lifestyle

  • sparrow4

    captclamdigger- we need to hear more from people like you and knathom. It’s important if we are ever to stop all this nonsense and look to the common ground we have to share. 80% of the people in this country don’t like the direction we’ve taken. there was a backlash against the conservatives and the religious right in this last election and a majority of Americans support choice. The next few years with see if the right marginalizes it self, or if it enters into a new. productive and tolerant partnership with the rest of us so that this country can get back on track.That’s not going to happen if conservative and fundamentalist churches continue to fight wedge issues and wage war on those who don’t believe as they do. It won’t happen if the religious right continues to misinterpret the real intent of freedom of religion to the detriment of other religions. (And that includes the fundamentalist right of my own faith too.)

  • MylesC

    Coloradodog,There are those who accidentally make a mistake in the name of the LDS church. But to intentionally leave out the name by which the church (and its members) are called is incredibly insulting. If that is your intent, then be clear about it. Feel free to say that you hate Mormons and wish to insult them at every opportunity.The name of the church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

  • coloradodog

    Milesc:How incredibly insulting for you to use the name of Jesus Christ to propagate hatred, intolerance and exclusion. There is little “Christ-like” in Mormon gay bashing.How gay, cruel, perverted and downright criminal is it for a BYU researcher or Dr. Robert Card in Salt Lake City (through Bishopric referrals) to strap a sensor on the penis of a minor, show him homosexual pornography to see if he gets an erection and then electo-shocking him severely for it.Shame on you all for using Christ’s name for this.

  • sparrow4

    “If it the taxt exempt status of the mormon church were put to a vote, would you vote for or against it? hat being mormon should be illegal, it would mean you don’t want the government to support something you don’t agree with.”** Not the case. first of all we can’t vote on it. You apply for that tax status to the IRS. And if were were up to a vote, I would vote against it because you are violating the terms and intent of that status. I don’t want the government to support organizations that don’t pay taxes under the terms of their agreement and then break that agreement. ** The gay community not only pays its fair share of taxes, they contribute greatly to the arts, the economy, education, politics- gays are as much as part of American society as you and your church are. In fact more so- they pay their fair share of taxes. Your church does not. I don’t like a lot of your beliefs- why should my taxes go to fund programs you run, and allow you to keep tax revenues from vast amounts of Church property and income when this country needs to get the economy back on its feet? You have all the benefits of being in America, and take none of the responsibility. Why should I have to support your lifestyle?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    A common homophobic joke to mock gay people and gay marriage is this: “God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.”First of all, this is redneck humor at its worst, that trivializes and makes fun of the Bible in order to villfy and demonize gay people.But if God did not create Adam and Steve, then who did?This whole “sanctity of marriage” argument is bogus and hypocritical; marriage is being destroyed by straigt people, who marry and divorce in rapid succession, and who send out their succession of wedding announcemnts in the expectation of more and more gifts for each wedding. Religious people are just as guilty; Mormons are just as guilty.Saying that same sex marriage defiles the sacntity of marriage is just a mean and damnable lie. Marriage is already ruined and cast aside in the gutter, where frivolous silly straight people have tossed it. The gays are merely the convenient scapegoat.I know there is nothing that I can say that will not get some smart, passive-aggressive Mormon retort; they have been taught well how to promote a faulty and disingenous argument.There is one thing that I note in these arguments about gay marriage: the Mormons have become afraid of gay people. And so have the Catholics and all of the many homophobic conservatuve Protestants. That is a good sign, I think, that they are loosing. Merely making fun of gay people and laughing at them does not work anymore.And Chrisewarner, to answer you unbelievable point on obese people, I would not support laws against fat people, and would not go around asserting my superiority over them. What have you got against fat people? Alot of Mormons are fat, I can assure you. There is a lot of weird stuff going inside your head.

  • pete1231

    “80% of the people in this country don’t like the direction we’ve taken. there was a backlash against the conservatives and the religious right in this last election and a majority of Americans support choice.”one of the posters made this inaccurate statement. The polls iindicate that the people in this country are unhappy by close to 80%, and the current conservative president has a poor approval rating second only to the approval rating of the liberal congress. So how does this point to rejection of the conservative and not the liberal? On the subject of the gay marriage issue being a conseravtive issue alone, blacks, who are more liberal politically voted overwhelming for Obama, also voted overwhelmingly for prop. 8 by a 70-30 margin. Explain that since i doubt many are LDS members or influenced by them. Your opinions and percentages are made up or misinterprested. Like the old saying goes, most %’s are made up 90% of the time, (last time i said 85%).

  • chrisewarner

    sparrow4 : Exactly, so don’t vote for laws that would support the mormon church because you don’t agree with. I will vot against laws that support homosexuality because I don’t agree with it. then as a country, or state, we will decide by voting what it is we do or do not want to support. California has decided it does not want to support homosexuality. Isn’t democracy wonderful!!

  • sparrow4

    “Marriage is not a civil right. It is established by societies to reward or promote those behaviors that are in the best interest of the society.”**wrong- marriage is an institution that a couple enter so that they may perform the business of life more efficiently. It entails complex relationships between families, resources, child raising, etc. Homo sapiens is a social animal.Marriage allows children to be part of a family unit so that society does not bear the responsibility of rearing, paying for, feeding, educating or giving them a skill. Now the crucial point is that whether or not the couple have their own biological child or adopt one, a family unit is still the most efficient. Yes children are essential to the continuation of society (doesn’t seem like we need to worry on that score). But more than that is the need to raise well-adjusted, productive members of society and it doesn’t matter if a family unit is straight or gay, just how well they raise their children.There are many cultures that did not marginalize their gay folk, but gave them a place in the community. Children with gay parents are just as well-adjusted, do just as well as those in traditional families. A traditional family is no guarantee that it isn’t dysfunctional. Just look at the newspapers- how many gay men di you read about who beat their children to death or force them to use a cat box for a toilet? ZERO. If you think a couple like Nixmarry Brown’s parents, or Lisa Sternberg’s parents are in the best interest of society you have another think coming.

  • pete1231

    Joel, Would you please explain to me where the seperation of church and state is found in the constitution, and please do not quote Jefferson’s later comments on it, or opinions about it, please point out the church/state seperation in exact words, please? i know about establishing a state religion, but that is not being done when a particular church makes a political statement. Help me out, here, i have searched the actual constitution and cannot find it. thanks

  • MylesC

    Coloradodog,I’m sorry to hear that a researcher did something like that. It is unfortunate.But how do that man’s acts affect my belief in Jesus Christ? Or my right to call myself a Christian?Also, why do you insist that I hate gays? You don’t even know me. I do not hate gays. I treat the gays that I know with the same respect that I treat anyone else. I do not call them names, I do not belittle them or ridicule them. How can by behavior toward gays be called hatred by any stretch of the imagination?

  • sparrow4

    Pete 1231- Liberal congress? what liberal congress? The republicans have held control for, what is it? close to 20 years (I may be wrong on the exact amount of time) – hardly “liberal.” And the election was exactly a backlash against the bush Administration and Republican Party platforms.the dems now hold a majority in the senate, and the republicans lost about 20 seats in the house. (oh, excuse me- 78% aren’t happy).as far as Prop8- those who voted for it were mainly evangelical or fundamentalist christians- it may shock you to know that many of them happen to be black so they voted in that context, not as liberals.and whether or not Californians voted against gay rights, the Federal Constitution takes precedence. So they may be saved from their stupidity yet.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    chrisewarnerJust what laws are you talking about that promote homosexuality? You hate gay people and everything associated with them, and so, by definition, sight unseen, any effort to promote the equality of gay people is automatically bad, since as you have already said, being gay is like being a murderer or being a thief, or being a pedaphile. You are the “Judge Judy” and Executionor of gay people. They are all guilty ahead of time, and they are all automatically bad and wicked, pre-ordained for Hell, and that is all you think about it.It is a shame that with all the troubles and problems of the world, that you have a chip on your shoulder and seek to blockade any progress that gay people may try to make in life. You are wasting your time and your life in this effort. What do you think? Do you think that people in ages hence will erect a statue or monument to you for blocking gay rights? More likely they will marvel that such ignorant people as you ever lived.If you choose to reject gay people, then that is your loss. You will be missing out on alot. Go ahead, and retreat into you backward, simple-minded, childishness; the world will be just as happy to pass you right by.

  • chrisewarner

    DanielintheLionsDenGay marriage is all about legitimzing homosexuality. It isn’t about hospital vistis and probates, those type of rights could be obtained by civil union. It is about making a statement that being homosexual is okay and is a good and acceptable choice, it is about legitimzing a sexual deviancy and getting the govt. to say that it is normal or okay. I don’t hate gay people, I am concerned for the welfare of all people, my concern does not stem from wanting a “monument erected in my honor” it is out of my general desire to be a benefit to mankind. And homosexuality is not a good thing for any individual or society. “If you choose to reject gay people, then that is your loss. You will be missing out on alot. Go ahead, and retreat into you backward, simple-minded, childishness; the world will be just as happy to pass you right by.”First, again, i am not rejected any person, i am standing up for what is best for all people as a society. Second the world isn’t passing my by, the world is standing by me. California is standing by me, Arizona and florida chose to stand by me, other states previously chose to stand by me. We are standing together to promote what is best for society, and homosexuality should not be promoted, condoned, or legitimized. As a side note, I must say I appreciate your Simpsons reference and am glad that we share at least one thing in common.

  • MylesC

    Sparrow4 said: “Children with gay parents are just as well-adjusted, do just as well as those in traditional families.”That certainly sounds nice, and I think you want that to be true, but I don’t think that we know that for sure. Of course, you can probably point to several anecdotal examples of well adjusted children from same-sex couples, but there are several scientific studies that would suggest that is not the norm. Children are put in much higher risk situations in same-sex households than in traditional mother-father families.Also, I see how you point to some of the worst examples of abuse in traditional families as evidence of your point of view. You fail to realize that, on average, children will do much better in families with a mother and a father, than without one or the other. Is it unfortunate that those situations exist? Yes. Should we encourage those situations? Absolutely not.

  • Alex511

    fr chrisewarner:>…It isn’t about hospital vistis and probates, those type of rights could be obtained by civil union. It is about making a statement that being homosexual is okay and is a good and acceptable choice, it is about legitimzing a sexual deviancy and getting the govt. to say that it is normal or okay….I’m sorry you’re so misinformed about the RIGHTS of GLBT’s. Want to ride in the ambulance when YOUR partner/spouse is enroute to the hospital? Better be married. Want to be able to make medical decisions for YOUR partner/spouse? Better be married. All we want is to have our RIGHT to marry the partner of our choice restored. Don’t swallow the lies of anti-gays like “dr” dobson, please. Oh, and being gay is NOT a “choice”. One is either BORN gay or straight. When did YOU make a “choice” to be straight??? >…I don’t hate gay people, I am concerned for the welfare of all people, my concern does not stem from wanting a “monument erected in my honor” it is out of my general desire to be a benefit to mankind. And homosexuality is not a good thing for any individual or society. …Got a funny way of showing that you “don’t hate gay people”.

  • chrisewarner

    “Actually homosexuality is legitimate. It’s perfectly legal and normal behavior.”It is legal, but that does not mean it should be supported. It is legal to live with your parents until you are 50, it is legal to be a jerk, it is legal only eat fast food every day, but those things do not need to be supported by the govt. It is legal to be gay, so go out be gay, but the govt. doesn’t need to support and promote that lifestyle by allowing gay marriage.

  • marcedward1

    chrisewarner writes It is legal, but that does not mean it should be supported.’Nobody in the universe is asking you to support it. Nobody’s asking for you to like it or to spend one penny supporting it, period.’It is legal to live with your parents until you are 50, it is legal to be a jerk’So that’s why you are the way you are?’It is legal to be gay, so go out be gay, but the govt. doesn’t need to support and promote that lifestyle by allowing gay marriage.’Legal marriage for gays is a civil right. Your kind would love to strip minorities of their rights by vote, but we have a constitution to protect the minority from the whims and bigotry of the majority. Thankfully the people who are the biggest antio-gay bigots are (smelly) old people, and time will take care of that constituency. Frankly as a straight person I have no idea why you all are afraid of gays. Here in Chapel Hill/Carrboro NC we have lots of openly gay people. In fact my wife teaches highschool and her’s is a ‘gay friendly classroom’. I’ve encountered highschool age gay couple hanging out there at lunch. Why is that sort of thing so troublesome to you? Are you suppressing something?

  • sparrow4

    mylesc- go to website of the American Psychological Association. Just a part of the article says:”many people are not aware of the three decades of research showing that children of gay or lesbian parents are just as mentally healthy as children with heterosexual parents, notes Cerbone. One such study, published in Child Development (Vol. 75, No. 6, pages 1,886–1,898) in 2004, compares a group of 44 teenagers with same-sex couples as parents with an equal number of teenagers with opposite-sex couples as parents. All participants were part of a national, randomly selected sample of teenagers from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. “I don’t fail to realize anything. But then again I don’t have a religious agenda I need to fulfill. and most of the trauma children of gay couples usually endure comes from the harassment by heteros, the mocking, the insults, the attacks. that’s the mindset people like you promote, whether by intent or inadvertently. Just as Sarah Palin promoted racism and attacks on Obama by implying he was a terrorist and had terrorist connections.

  • MylesC

    Marcedward1,Why are you resorting to personal attacks? I think you revealed a great deal about yourself with that little “aside” to Daniel that even though we have said many times that we don’t hate, really we do. Who can say better what is in my heart than me? No matter what you do, you cannot make me hate you! But you get an A for effort.

  • sparrow4

    “It is legal, but that does not mean it should be supported.”You don’t understand the difference between support and protection. the government protects their rights, the same as it protects yours.It doesn’t cost you a dime. You’re not even being forced to kick in money for the weddings. And if it is legal, you support the LAW.

  • blinqr

    Would anyone be opposed to me marrying a horse? Also, I would like to make polygamy legal. I have rights!!!

  • Paganplace

    ” blinqr Author Profile Page:”Would anyone be opposed to me marrying a horse? Also, I would like to make polygamy legal. I have rights!!!”How very medieval of you to make the comparison, Blinkered. That’s actually what equal rights are intended to get us away from, actually. :)

  • dummypants

    MarcEdward 1:in response to the question, “show me where the seperation of church and state is in the constitution” you said: “Yeeeesh ever heard of google? The SCOTUS has recognized the seperation between church and state forever.”thats true, but i think the point that was being made was a textual point. obviously, the words “seperation of church and state” or “wall of seperation” are not found anywhere in the constitution. what IS in the constitution are words like “free exercise” and “establishment”.the phrase “wall of seperation of church and state” comes from a single solitary letter written by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists. Of couse, the Constitution is the Constitution of the United States, not the Constitution of Thomas Jefferson. Nonetheless, some supreme court justices have used that phrase in their opinions over the past 30 years or so. its an interesting phrase, especially if it suits your conclusion (some justice obviously believed it did) but not really a good one to base underlying constitutional analysis off of, simply because, well, what DOES a “wall of seperation between church and state” mean? What form would it take in practice?Obviously, it does not take the form that a duly enacted law cannot embody a moral view that is also endorsed by any religion.indeed, to the extent that our morals inform our public policy and religion (formal or informal) often does inform our sense of morals, the idea of “wall of seperation” between the church barack obama goes to and the moral view that underlies his policies and goals as president is absurd, and not simply achievable in the real world.it is a nice, cute phrase, but in the end, it is not going to advance your argument much, except as a piece of empty rhetoric.

  • blinqr

    Is it not a legitimate question? My intent was not to draw a comparison to gays as horses. My intent was to draw the distaste a Christian might have with same-sex marriage. I think it might draw perspective on what a supporter of 8 might be thinking.

  • Paganplace

    “>…It isn’t about hospital vistis and probates, those type of rights could be obtained by civil union.”Actually, a lot of anti ‘gay marriage’ initiatives that have been passed don’t stop at the word marriage, as advertised, but actually also prevent people of the same sex from enjoying *any* rights to privately make *any* contracts ‘similar to components of marriage.’ Saying it’s about the ‘word’ or distinctions like that make no difference when the actual *statutes* you vote for *do in fact abridge our rights to make these arrangements, even if we pay lawyers to draw up contracts straights don’t have to if they go to a Vegas wedding chapel and get married by an Elvis impersonator for fifty bucks, to enjoy 2400 federal legal rights and protections.

  • Paganplace

    ” blinqr “Is it not a legitimate question? “It’s not a legitimate question, no. If you want to marry livestock, I assure you it has nothing to do with me and my sweetie not being treated like second-class citizens who can have all we’ve built together taken away by any Christian relative who cares to. No. It’s not a legitimate question. It’s offensive. We’re not livestock. We’re people.

  • sparrow4

    If the horse will have you? Sure.Oh sure- have wife. Have several. They can go with your horse’s ass.

  • blinqr

    paganplace, you get offended too easily and didn’t read my second response (“My intent was not to draw a comparison to gays as horses. My intent was to draw the distaste a Christian might have with same-sex marriage. I think it might draw perspective on what a supporter of 8 might be thinking.”)sparrow, thanks for the hilarity. You seem interested in defending your cause and I’m glad you didn’t get offended.It’s obvious that my comments were seen in different ways. The same way this some see gays as acceptable and some as not.

  • blinqr

    Umm… paganplace, I’m fine with gays getting what they want. Not sure why you went on a tangent. I’m not sure if I had stated my position yet.

  • blinqr

    Whoa, try not to read what’s not there, pagan. Take off the hate glasses.

  • MylesC

    Sparrow4, OK, I read the article. It is interesting. I am not suggesting that gay parents can not be loving and nurturing or love the children that they care for. That’s human nature.I also did some quick research. Here’s an interesting article from the LA Times: Among other things the article says:Though the early consensus is that they do not, even the investigators acknowledge the field is too young, the numbers too few, the variables too many and the research too values-laden to qualify as definitive.”That would lead me to believe that we don’t know for sure. But here are some statistics that I found:>Women are four times more likely to be victims>The incidence of domestic violence amongThat does not seem like a healthy environment for children.

  • blinqr

    Too tell you truth, I think someday most if not all states will allow same-sex marriage. I think when that happens the Mormon church will accept that as what the country wants, even though you still won’t be able to marry inside a Mormon temple, and that’s fine, that’s their right and belief. When the country said polygamy wasn’t legal in the 1800′s the Mormons stopped, obeyed the law and excommunicated anyone who still practiced. Mormons are tolerant. Having differences doesn’t make someone intolerant, it makes them unique. America obviously isn’t ready for same-sex marriage, but someday they will be.

  • sparrow4

    Blinqr- I’m still not sure how your question relates to thsi issue other than to strike a seeming parallel between extreme forms of marriage. Bu gay marriage isn’t extreme- well, at least not to me.the Mormons gave up polygamy to get statehood for Utah. That ban actually can be challenged supposedly under the constitution, and a number of sects still do practice it, despite the prohibition of the LDS. Oddly enough, the defense of Marriage Act, written to exclude gay people, also excludes polygamy since it defined marriage as between one man and one woman. But as someone said, eventually the ban will be challenged. **I personally think any woman who enters such a marriage is a fool, but if you have consenting adults, and they aren’t moving in with me, what do I care? And that’s the whole point. It’s not my business. i don’t like it, I think its detrimental to women and renders them less equal in the relationship than the man. But plenty of other cultures do it, and they could technically challenge the law if they move to this country with their multiple wives. Could get interesting, but its their choice, their religion.So while I understand why Mormons object to homosexuality,- I don’t agree with them- I think they are wrong to believe they have the right to deny gays the institution of marriage. I don’t se why they care- it’s no skin off their noses, so to speak. It doesn’t affect them personally, they aren’t going to stop being Mormon (or Catholic of Evangelical). The only thing they might stop being is “unfair.”

  • MylesC

    Paganplace said: “Again, obviously, lesbians are therefore twice as healthy an environment for children.” Um, no. The other article I cited says that lesbian women are FOUR times more likely to be victims of domestic violence. Twice the rate for gay couples (vs. hetero).

  • blinqr

    Do you think getting together with supporters of all forms of marriage, including polygamists, to make your voice louder, would be beneficial?

  • Paganplace

    Also, Mormon, it’s Pagan with a capital P. We’re people on that score, too. Proper name. If you’re done looking at imaginary livestock, that is.

  • dummypants

    Sparrow:you are my ongoing project: you said, “I don’t fail to realize anything. But then again I don’t have a religious agenda I need to fulfill”here is a test:do you believe that an athiest, such as myself, can still have moral objections to gay marriage (which is not to say that i do, of course).its a fairly straight foward question, hopefully you can give me your answer to that.

  • MylesC

    Paganplace said: “the ‘statistics’ homophobes use to say ‘Homosexuals are horrible people,’ (instead of people treated horribly)”I hope nothing I’ve said leads you to that conclusion. I can understand why you feel that way though, given the types of comments that have been posted here. There have been few discussion boards that I have participated in that have made me more ashamed to be on the same side with some of the posters than this one. I hope that the comments that I make do not close the doors of discussion, but give some insight into the thought process involved in making decisions of this type. I’ll have to continue with this discussion tomorrow.

  • stevemansteve

    Just because you are on one side or the other does not mean that you can state your opinions as facts. I’ve been reading through most of the posts and there are an awful lot of opinions being passed off as hard facts.

  • marcedward1

    Yo PaganplaceOne assumes that if you check their methodology you’d find it was rather flawed. Any study published online will have a link for ‘methodology’ – if it doesn’t you can assume their methodology is ‘pulling it out of my a**’.BTW, does MYLSEC provide a link to his study?

  • Paganplace

    “One assumes that if you check their methodology you’d find it was rather flawed. Any study published online will have a link for ‘methodology’ – if it doesn’t you can assume their methodology is ‘pulling it out of my a**’.”The methodology of anti-gay arguments are *always* flawed. Heck, they still cite discredited studies from the 60s of *institutionalized schizophrenic men* and try to apply them to lesbian couples. Frankly, if it’s a ‘choice,’ why is there supposed to be ‘science’ about ‘us?’

  • blinqr

    Paganplace, I’ll let you call me Blinkered as long as I can call you pagan.:) I’m not sure you have to talk down to me. I thought me stating that I was fine with gays getting what they want, was enough. Walking a mile in YOUR shoes won’t be necessary.

  • sparrow4

    ” my “point” in informing you that the Bill of Rights is part of our constitution is that you told me I needed to re-read “constitution and the Bill of Rights”. clealry, you did not seem to be aware that in reading the constitution you would also be reading the Bill of Rights–unless you decided to be redundant for the shear fun of it.”**I mentioned it because I wanted to emphasize it. Have you ever read Strunk & White?**actually, no. I didn’t. I actually said “** You need to reread the constitution AND Bill of rights, my friend. there are certain basic rights- to life =, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (within reason of course) and many principles laid out that cannot be abrogated without a constitutional amendment.” I am referring to underlying principles and generalizing. Sorry you aren’t capable of understanding subtleties or general references. But since you don’t understand why Prop 8 is unconstitutional, nit-picking won’t help you much. Better reading comprehension might though.** Well you sure didn’t go to law school- you don’t know how to use the word “You’re” as opposed to “your” , which would have been the correct usage.and “relates to.” By the way, it’s SEPARATION of Church and State, not SEPERATION. Seems I’m not the only one who is on a level with Sarah Palin.———————you should know that laws against murder, slavery, tax evasion, parking violations, statutory rape and polygamy are not violations of the seperation of church and state.”** I never said they were violations. You’ve got some very twisted reasoning there. It’s quite evident you aren’t grasping anything about what the SEPARATION of church and state actually means or the concept of freedom of religion. But it seems freedom of religion is only supposed to apply to you, and no one else.**Hmmm….that mangled Sarah Palin language again. Do you know how to spell at all? Gays should be able to marry other gay people and not just straight people. Perhaps you really meant to say, “should be….blah blah blah..just as straight people have the right to marry. “And yes- I do think that.

  • sparrow4

    “. you say the american people rejected the republican platform. does that mean they accepted obama’s platform? because part of obama’s platform is opposition to gay marriage. that it, obama and the authors of Prop. 8 both agree on whether or not gay people should be able to marry other gay people.”Obama also said he would not support a constitutional amendment or ban. In other words, it is his personal belief, not one he will put into law. why? Because he doesn’t want to use the constitution to remove rights from any gorup of people.As for your question about being an atheist with a moral objection? I’m sure you could come up with one- what is it?

  • Paganplace

    “if Roe v. Wade were a moot point, why is it still a political issue?”Well, actually, overturning Roe V. Wade wouldn’t actually do anything about abortion at this point, but it is the precedent for American citizens having a right to privacy. Another issue, but don’t blame me if you find your screens looking back at you.

  • blinqr

    If you are indeed a pagan then why the offense? Bigotry? That seems overused by both sides of the issue and hypocritical. Since you continue to bring it up:

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    I am not very impressed wih the quality of the Mormon argument for their grudge against gay people. Gay marriage does not encourage homosexuality. Gay people already exist, with or without gay marriage, and they do not recruit people and a person cannot choose to be gay, if they are not already gay. That is an unfounded fear of conservative Christians who are already shakey in their own sexuality or may actually already be gay themselves. Gay marriage does not promote people to want to marry their horses or their grandmothers, or their children. There is no grass roots demand for such these things. Anyone whot promotes such an argument may as well hold up a sign that says, “I am stupid.” These are all silly specsious arguments, designed to block and obstruct. I feel very sorry for people whose entire existence must be dedicated to blocking and obstructing other people, to watching and guarding agaisnt the freedom of other people, of seeking perpetually to control what other people think and do.To be a Mormon and live like this must be unendinly wearinsome. Perhaps the Mormons should stop being Mormons and convert to something better. If they don’t like this suggestion, then perhaps they could recall their army of proselytizing missionary boy couples.

  • sparrow4

    “i actually support gay marriage, i would have voted “no” on Prop. 8, but i support the constitution more, and i’m not going to sit by as people distort the constitution to advance their political interests. why are alienating people who would otherwise support your position? kind of stupid if you ask me.so let me get this straight: if you think that anti-gay marriage is a violation of the 1st amenmendment, then obviously you must believe that anti-statutory rape laws are also a violation of the 1st amendment.”You’re confusing a criminal act with a right, dummypants. the first amendment does not give you the right to commit criminal acts. There is no “freedom” that gives you the right to commit a criminal act. Marriage is not a criminal act- so support gay marriage under the 1st amendment does not mean you would support statutory rape.

  • Paganplace

    Basically, the way I see it is, the wealthy institution of the LDS church chose to try to become ‘popular’ by picking on the queer kids, then wants to call those who won’t stand for it anymore ‘Nazis’ for *showing we won’t take it anymore.’ You want to align with the bullies, you lose your whining privileges. That’s how it goes.

  • marcedward1

    Somebody postedReminds me of a bogus book I read “The Case for Marriage”, which isn’t a bad read, but the author constantly uses apples/oranges comparisans. Same with Clair here – comparing a lesbian household with a married household. You cannot compare people who are dating or living together with the married population and come up with any meaningful data. Sadly the poster cited books and not any online study so until I visit the local college used bookstore it’s impossible to refute the work. However the conclusions (that gays beat eachother more than straights) seem rather unlikely. Same sex couples communicate far better than straight couples, and unlike straight couples, gay couples get closer to understanding when they argue. My guess is the original poster has never read either book.

  • Paganplace

    Also, I’m not sure you noticed it, Blinker, but you compared me and my dear one to livestock again.

  • marcedward1

    somebody who lacks the wit to capitalize wroteWho said Roe was a moot point? I said that whining about the separation betwixt church/state is a moot point as it’s settled law – there is no chance that the wall will come down in our lifetimes, and it’s best it doesn’t.Arguing about which party is anti-abortion is moot because neither party is interested in ending legal abortion. Roe is only a political issue because it’s a wedge issue (like gay marriage) that Republicans exploit, stirring up pro-life folks into working for them. Oddly after promising to pass a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, the Republicans never even tried to. Looks like they played you for a sucker, just like they do the pro-life people.

  • Farnaz2

    dummypantsI’m wondering what your point is. Are you saying that gay rights are unconstitutional? Isn’t constitutionality rather complex? For instance, why on earth did we need a civil rights amendment.Is this phrase still current: “Strict Constructionist?”As in Fundamentalist.

  • Farnaz2

    I said that whining about the separation betwixt church/state is a moot point as it’s settled law – there is no chance that the wall will come down in our lifetimes, and it’s best it doesn’t.Separation of church and state, my aunt tilly (I don’t have an aunt tilly).

  • sparrow4

    Myslesc- Thanks. I also looked that up, It’s interesting because the context of statistics can change their meaning. While you point out that 30 years is not a long enough time, I have to say that this is a young issue in any case. But 30 years should give a good indication. So the statistics you pulled out are a little at odds with that and I can only suggest several things that I see.The statistics you gave seem to be for gays in partnerships but not families. I don’t know if this skews the data in any way since they don’t give that information. A great deal of hetero domestic abuse goes unreported- I believe much more so than gay domestic abuse. Some of it has to do with women being afraid to walk out of marriages when they have young children.And i think gays have a great deal of pressure on them because society looks down on them, doesn’t want them to have the same rights as everyone else. They have much less security legally, than married couples. even those who have adopted children have to be careful where they travel because if a state they travel through doesn’t recognize gay adoption, their kids can be taken away. And there’s lots of other difficulties like that. As youths, they are subjected to a great deal of name calling, attacks, taunts. they’re made to feel like outsiders. But gays are a minority, so in terms of actual numbers, hetero domestic violence is more extensive.

  • Paganplace

    *directing Blinqr to my post of 8:02, in case it gets lost in the spelling deal.* Don’t you see?

  • Farnaz2

    Well, Dummypants, I would like to know if you think that gay marriage is unconstitutional. My guess is this is a very complex question, as I said.As well, if all was so very clear, I doubt Bill Clinton would have signed that ridiculous Defense of Marriage Act.Anyway, the first step toward progress in this as in all areas of civilization is ending tax exempt status for religious institutions. Or maybe it’s the second or third step. Either way it’s got to end.

  • anzianohansen

    John 15:18

  • sparrow4

    “the funny thing is that not only did i go to law school, and not only did i win my law school’s constituional law writing prize, but i won it for a paper on marriage rights and the constitution.i am actually working on getting that paper published currently.”**And yet you can’t spell separation? as in separation of church and state? You don’t know the difference between your and you’re? “obviously, you never said it. you implied it, by your own twsited reasoning about a hypothetical law about bobbing for apples. you would never say anything like that because it would be absurd. unfortunately your understanding of the 1st amendment commits you to those statements. sure, you didnt say it. but do you agree with those statements?”**Don’t become a trial lawyer. You couldn’t reason YOUR way out of a paper bag. YOU’RE barely managing to construct a coherent sentence.Yes, let’s look at what I actually said, and then at what you seem to think I said. MY ORIGINAL COMMENT:”whether or not one or many religions preach something, if they try to turn it into law and it is inherently unconstitutional, the law will be overturned.You cannot pass any old law you want simply because the majority votes for it. It has to pass constitutional criteria. that’s the way it works. “YOU REPLIED: “”you seem to be saying that a law cannot reflect the teachings of any religion.”AND I SAID TO THAT-YOUR RESPONSE:”you seem to be saying that a law cannot reflect the teachings of any religion.ok, so abolition was unconstitution, as is environmental legislation, as well as tax and welfare policies meant to help the lest fortunate among us.indeed, laws against murder and theft are unconstitutional because the ten commandments includes “thou shall not kill” and “thou shall not theft”"I think most people will be scratching their heads and going , duh? And this guy claims to have gone to law school and won a prize?My comment about bobbing for apples was to illustrate a point about religious beliefs and freedom of religion- I can see why you didn’t get it. Too difficult for you.I never claimed to be a constitutional whiz kid, but I certainly have a firmer grasp of its concepts than you. And a much better command of english too. Good luck with that paper. Do get someone to proofread it for you.AND FINALLY: for the answer to your polygamy question you can read what I wrote to blinqr at 6:42.

  • sparrow4

    dummypants- you’d have to be a whole lot smarter to get somewhere with me. You wrote “california passes a law that no makes it a criminal offense for any person to persue a marriage license in conjunction with someone of the same gender.”**er… that’s “pursue” and again, just because a referendum now makes it a criminal act for gays to get married, once again- o great self-described genius of the constitution, it will have to withstand scrutiny for its constitutionality. That’s why it will probably go to the Supreme Court (you do know what that is, yes?). Murder and rape are criminal acts period. They are not civil rights. Do you understand that difference? you wrote:”by your logic, all california would have to do is pass this law and there could be no constitutional argument that there is a right to gay marriage.”**What? Do you even know what you just wrote? I can’t tell if its just mangled english or mangled logic. Or just plain old “I can’t read.”How about I reiterate what you should have learned?:1.Your and you’re are two different words. You’re = the contraction of you are.2. it’s separation, not seperation3. Learn to read. Learn to write english.

  • CCNL

    Once again, my complete statement:Homosexual sexual activities are everyone’s business since said activities affect our health insurance rates as do all STDs from sexual activies of all those involved with multiple sexual partners, straight or gay. Treatment of STDs in the USA cost ~$15 billion/yr as per the CDC.And yes as with smoking/using tobacco products, obesity is also a major health concern and a major drain on health care costs and is an issue for employment for many jobs. And it is obvious STDs, childbirth complications, and maternity expenses, like post-partum breast cancer and reproductive tract disorders, obviously, are less in lesbians (no penetrating parts save toys and fingers) unless the female half of the duo decides to be artificially inseminated. That being said, said activity is still yucky to most straight voters. And from a religious/guidance/evolutionary law standpoint, do homosexuals commit fornication if not married when they have their normal “mutual masterbation” sessions? Do they commit adultery when said gay “marrieds” have affairs?? Or how goes the thou shalt not covet thy neighbors wife if you are a lesbian?? Ditto for the guy gays coveting husbands?? Hmmmm??? Then there is the pedophilia situation with gays(and straights) and children.

  • Paganplace

    So, then, once again, CCNL, by your rationale, lesbian relationships are to be encouraged, since we’re the *lowest* risk group for AIDS, STDs, and pregnancy complications? :)

  • Paganplace

    I mean, frankly, Concerned Christian, I’m a simple Pagan and I just don’t understand what you mean by this ‘coveting’ thing you somehow fear being gay makes people more prone to… Covetousness is jealously wanting something someone else owns, right? You can’t own people. Why would you want to? I know wives were treated as property in the Bible, but it’s not my religion and I live in America. If ‘coveting wives’ is something you’re not supposed to do, why is it supposed to be I can’t be or have one cause someone else… like you, wants us to be wives to someone like *you?* And it’s supposed to be *we’re* ‘covetous’ for wanting to build a life together without so much fear and insecurity about others taking away anything we build together?Cause straight couples feel like we’re somehow taking some ‘sanctity’ away from *them* just for being?How’s *that* supposed to make sense? Who’s *really* being jealous, there?I don’t even know you. And I don’t particularly want to. The world’s a saner and brighter place when I stay *away* from you type people.

  • Paganplace

    Also, if Mormons want to feel ‘oppressed’ by someone protesting what their organization *did* in front of their local headquarters, ….stop coming to my house at all hours of the morning, banging on my door, and insulting me.

  • Paganplace

    Anyway, CCNL’s thing aside, Mormons. I don’t *hate* you. I’m *angry* with you. Cause you’re hurting me, and who I love most in the world right now. You don’t even have to. But you’re still doing it. Even when we say, ‘Ow, you’re hurting us,’ you say, ‘No we’re not, this is good!’Yes, people are angry with you. If you want to make it right, you don’t call people Nazis *for* being angry about you screwing up their lives. You stop it.You make it right. Then you find out if people ‘hate’ you. My dear one and I have done *nothing* to you. You’ve done something to us. Might want to look at that.

  • Paganplace

    Also, Mormons, if you decide to side with the bullies, I assure you you have lost your whining privileges as a ‘minority.’ Ask any queer person how we got through school. You can’t fight a whole mob, but you can guarantee someone walks away with a broken nose before you get beaten down. Wasn’t our topic this week ‘compassion?’ How do you think the people you spent all that money to *hurt* feel?Whiners. Bullies always are.

  • Tuerke9

    All of this conversation about civil rights is a waste of time. The entire issue of same sex marriage is not about civil rights. It is about the gay community pressing society at large to sanction the homosexual lifestyle as “normal” by

  • kenifnephi

    First of all, I am a Latter Day Saint, or Mormon as you reffer to. I had never heard anyone urge me from the pulipit of my Church or any other place as to how I was to vote on Amendment 8. I live here in Florida and that Amendment was also defeated. There was never any violence or any protest about it. I was never personally asked by anyone to help “bankrole” the efforts is helping this amendment to be defeated. Did it ever occur to you that there are many others in the world other than Latter Day Sanits that feel that the union of marriage is meant for only a man and a woman. Did it ever occur to anyone that is upset at this situation that it is the American people as a whole that defeated this amendment? It would not be safe to target those that are Democrats and picket there places of worship, business, or homes becasue there was a Democratic President elected? How dumb to pin the blame on a certain religion or ethnic group. When the reality it that America as a whole spoke. When there were Republicians as well as Demorcrats that voted to place a Democrat in office. When will people stop pointing blame on others and start looking at themselves for the answers. For the record “Mormons” have been persecuted for many years, and we have endureed many things. We are a loving and peaceful group and once time has passed and the dust settles and everyone looks back on the footage of these protests and their signs. The truth will come out as to who are the peacful ones. Since you felt kind of upset regarding the signs and comments, maybe you should have taken that as your inner voice telling you that was not the right thing to be doing at that time. And for the record, the holy undies are not just worn by the men, but the women as well. They are a reminder of our coventants made to each other and to Heavenly father in the temple. I would never degrade anyone by their choices. I would never judge anyone publically or privately based on thier choices. But yes, since I do live in a country that is free of speech, and free to worship as I wish, then when asked how I feel about Amendment 8, and asked to vote on it. Then I will take that opportunity everytime it is given to me. After all it was given to you and everyone else the same way. Just becasue it was out voted that is no reason to be a sore looser. Next time you rally the troops and maybe you will be victorous. After all that is what this country is all about, second chances.

  • marcedward1

    kenifnephi it was the mormons and the RCC that spent millions to take away the civil rights of gays in California. That is why some might be protesting outside your cults compounds.

  • arosscpa

    Although collective mental masturbation poses no legal or moral problem that I know of, it is not terribly productive.Rather than argue for same-sex marriage, which Americans have repeated rejected even when the judiciary mandates it, why not look for real-world solutions that protect long-term quasi-familial relationships. The primary burdens that same-sex couples face by not being able to marry is the legal cost of guaranteeing legal rights, which automatically accrue in matrimony, and the lack of tax benefits given automatically to married couples.If same-sex couples received a life-time tax credit for the cost of securing those legal benefits, and the “head-of-household” filing status were modified to include two-income same-sex couples, then much of the discriminatory impact of the same-sex marriage ban would be obviated.I am afraid that the gay community very much misunderstands itself in terms of the black civil rights movement. Rather than understanding itself as positioned where the African-American community way in the early 1960′s, I fear that this community is facing the regression visited upon Southern blacks in the mid 1870s. When the Northern emigres had lost the incentives to continue enforcing emancipation upon the South, they returned to their former homes, leaving the emancipated slaves unable to avoid the onslaught of Jim Crow laws and the rise of Southern retribution in forms like the Ku Klux Klan and lynch mobs.Gay marriage is a demand to which the American public is unwilling to assent. That is the “Realpolitik.” I fear that the continuing refusal to accept this can only lead to a regress in the gains made by the gay community in the last three decades, and will usher in a period of retribution like the 90-year Jim Crow era in the South.

  • anzianohansen

    PROPOSITION 8 DIDN’T HURT GAYS. EVEN THE GAY ELTON JOHN HAS BEEN TRYING TO TEACH GAYS THIS. PROPOSITION 8 WAS SIMPLY DEFINING THE WORD “MARRIAGE”. MORMONS HAVE AN INTEREST IN HOW THIS WORD IS DEFINED BECAUSE THIS DEFINITIONS GOVERNS HOW MORMONS CAN USE THEIR CHURCHES AND TEMPLES IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. MORMONS HAVE NOTHING AGAINST GAYS AT ALL. IN FACT, FEW GROUPS CARE MORE ABOUT GAYS THAN MORMONS. RATHER, BY SUPPORTING PROPOSITION 8, MORMONS WERE DEMOCRATICALLY, CONSTITUTIONALLY, AND LEGALLY WATCHING OUT FOR THEIR OWN RIGHTS TO WORSHIP AS THEY PLEASE IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. PROPOSITION 8 DOES NOT, I REPEAT, NOT, INFRINGE ON GAYS. GAYS CAN ENTER INTO LEGAL UNIONS IN CALIFORNIA. ELTON JOHN UNDERSTAND ALL OF THIS- GAYS AND LESBIANS, YOU’RE NOT FIGHTING THE RIGHT BATTLE HERE. YOU DO DESERVE RIGHTS, BUT INSTEAD OF FIGHTING FOR THOSE RIGHTS, YOU’RE AIMING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION.

  • sparrow4

    It’s always difficult to address ingrained prejudice- because people like kenifnephi and tuerke9 can see beyond their bias. (Forget ccnl- he simply can’t see anything except cont+c and cont+v.Plus he spends an inordinate amount of time fantasizing about gay sex. You have to wonder…)In fact you people spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about gays and their lifestyles in general. Gays aren’t pushing anything on you. They are demanding to be treated equally in a society which demands they fulfill their full responsibilities as American citizens, but does not want to give them the same rights. this is not what living in a democracy is supposed to mean. Citing “majority rules” is simplistic- it doesn’t work exactly that way. Personally , since you think that’s the answer, let me point out that majority rules has a lot to answer for- take Nazi Germany for instance.You vote on prop 8 is a close , shall we say kissing cousin to the baser impulses of Nazi Germany. But that’s always true for institutions that whip their adherents up into a frenzy of hysteria over other people’s rights and tells them those “people” don’t deserve them.I think we should have a referendum on whether or not the Mormons keep their tax exempt status and also a law to stop them from entering other people’s property to knock on their doors and proselytize. And since they are so prejudiced, they should not be allowed to preach and do outreach on public streets. I don’t think you have the right to go anywhere you want and preach. I don’t care if you do it in your church or in your home, byt MY taxes pay for the streets.How’s that for democracy?kenifnephi wrote:”I would never degrade anyone by their choices. I would never judge anyone publically or privately based on thier choices. But yes, since I do live in a country that is free of speech, and free to worship as I wish, then when asked how I feel about Amendment 8, and asked to vote on it. Then I will take that opportunity everytime”And don’t kid yourself that all of America voted for this. Get an opinion poll across the country about mormons and I think you would rank waaaayyyy below gays (or did you forget Mitt Romney)? the covenant of the holy underwear- and you are worried about the “sanctity of marriage?” Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…….

  • sparrow4

    anziohansen- you’re screaming. don’t you know how to type? As for the rest of your rant- it’s BS. We have equal rights in this country no matter how much cults and churches wish it were not so. Funny too how crazy polygamists marry underage wives, David Koresh could practice his freedom of religion, the mormons wear “holy undies”, the Jehovah’s witnesses don’t vote and have been waiting for the end of the world, the Wasilla crazies talk in tongues,Jim Jones loved kool-aid, but gays aren’t allowed to marry? You can’t make this stuff up.

  • marcedward1

    arosscpa Anziohanson, your caps-lock is stuck. You’re also rather ignorant. Gays had the civil right of marriage before prop 8 passed. They have lost that right. Claiming they have lost nothing is an outright lie. Thankfully your kind of bigotry is dying in this country. Maybe you’d be more comfortable living in Iran, SaudiArabia, or with the Taliban, all of whom share your values.

  • arosscpa

    marcedwards1:You miss my point: gay marriage is not a political possibility in the US for the foreseeable future. To continue the civil rights analogy, what if Dr. King and the other civil rights leaders had insisted that the issue slavery reparations be settled before enacting the Civil Rights Act of 1964? They would have sacrificed a monumental leap forward for all Americans, for the honor of insisting on a political impossibility.Politics is the art of the possible. Failure by the gay community to grasp that reality cannot be blamed on the RCC, the LDS, or any other constituency. It is strictly a matter of the community’s failure to work within the realm of the possible.

  • Paganplace

    AcrossC:Gay marriage may not be *politically* possible to get a majority to vote for, right now, (even if a majority favor at least ‘separate but equal’ civil unions. The *courts,* on the other hand, must find that discriminating against gay couples regarding civil marriage, …is unconstitutional, because it *is.* If the LDS church *chooses* to go into another state bankrolling a deceptive campaign to get people to make an end run around justice to amend a state constitution to strip people of their rights, you certainly *can* blame them for that. No one said that’s how they had to spend their time and money. They *chose* to do this. They are *not* the good guys in this matter. They want to please their God, they should find a way that doesn’t involve stepping on innocent people trying to live.

  • arosscpa

    Paganplace:Given that state supreme judiciaries have either been preempted or over-ruled by the electorate, their rulings seem to be sources of temporary disruptions in the body politic, not agents of social change. Note that the only reason Mass. still has gay marriage is because the Democratic legislature has refused to act upon the constitutional process initiated by the electorate.You and others on this blog seem to view the current interpretation of the religion-government constitutional conundrum is on a constant trajectory in favor of increasing secularity. First Amendment jurisprudence regarding religion’s proper role in public society and government has followed a 50-70 year cycle in the US Supreme Court. Some would suggest that the pendulum began swinging to a view that increasingly favors religion’s role in society about a decade ago.

  • Paganplace

    Justice is justice. Rationalizing an injustice perpetrated through money, deceit, hate, and fearmongering to push legalized discriminiation over the top, doesn’t make it justice. It’s not about religion, it’s about certain interpretations of and smears of innocent people by *your* religion. Individual freedom of religion is one of the rights held *sacred* by our Constitution. Unalienable. Not even alienable by churches or popular votes. I have a religion, too. And when my dear one and I are married before the Gods, our ancestors, and community, we’ll be *married.* Whatever you use the law to do try and punish us about not obeying *your* religion. Whatever you do to try and ‘disrupt’ *our* family. How *dare* you come along and tell *us* what How dare you treat us this way and claim it’s ‘God?’How dare you.

  • fgiles

    A number of years age I attended a protestant wedding. At one point in the ceremony, the pastor presented the coupe to the audience and spoke at some length about the need for us, the community to support and approve of the newly created family. Also, old-fashioned wedding ceremonies included a line something like: “If anyone here knows a reason why these two people should not be joined in matrimony, let him speak now or forever hold his peace.”In a religious context this approval also includes the blessing of God on the union.In the modern time of civil union laws this symbolic aspect of marriage, the recognition and approval of the community, is all that appears to be left undecided. Whatever legal and economic issues may remain could certainly be addressed.While I agree that homosexuals have a civil right to free association, I assert that no one has a civil right to society’s approval.However; under the First Amendment, we all clearly have the right to disapprove of other’s behavior. And further, the right to express that disapproval in any non-criminal manner we choose.The legal and protest history of the gay rights movement leaves significant doubt that the right to disapprove would be allowed by the movement. It is in part the perception that the gay community would continue legal and protest action to suppress any and all disapproval that motivated Proposition 8 in the first place. In light of the movement’s actions in California since the vote, these doubts appear to be substantiated. A population that felt it could trust the gay right movement to respect other’s boundaries would probably be more amenable. As it is, successors to Proposition 8 look more and more likely.

  • Paganplace

    Nonsense, Fgiles. A protestant church wouldn’t put up with a Catholic barging in to their wedding to express ‘God’s disapproval’ and stop the Protestant religious wedding or the marriage license from being binding.Your logic is spurious, claiming you have the ‘right to come into *my* religious community, (which frankly celebrates gay unions all the time, and happily) and claim your God entitles you to break up *our* marriages. Disapprove all you want. You don’t get to perpetrate injustice in civil law over it. As for your God, well, if you figure he’s all happy about you making him look like a tyrant and an *ahem….* Well. I guess you’ll have to see how long your ‘community’ approves.

  • fgiles

    re Paganplace,I certainly would not enter your place of worship univited. However, by bringing the matter to the state supreme court, the gay community essentially invited the people of California to the wedding.52% of those people chose to ‘speak now’ rather than ‘hold their peace’.I still assert that I have a right to express disapproval of things I believe aren’t right, and that would include voting to prevent my tacit approval from being extended automatically by the government.

  • sparrow4

    Well, here’s a thought. If religious institutions don’t want the government to tell them anything, they should stop accepting federal ,state and local money and start paying taxes. Why should my tax money go to support organizations that are proud of their bigotry and hide it behind the faux banner of “sanctity of marriage?” I resent it- You want gays’ tax money. You want them to be consumers so your businesses make money. and if they don’t ask, don’t tell, you’ve been all too happy to let them go to fight for this country and die in every war since the revolution.(Of course you wouldn’t know who most of them are- they’d have gotten assaulted by our own military for being gay. as for voting to express your freedom of religion, actually no- you’re voting bigotry and to deny fellow Americans the same rights and benefits you demand for yourselves.

  • Paganplace

    Your ‘scholars’ are misinformed or trying to mislead, Dr.Rock. As clergy, I can refuse to marry a couple cause I don’t approve of their taste in shoes, if I want. Equal civil marriage rights don’t mean any clergy is legally bound to perform a ceremony. That’s why we have JPs.

  • Paganplace

    And, to put it very bluntly, Doctor, my unalienable rights as an American are not contigent on the comfort and convenience of a few bigots, or even a disinformed ballot majority, or any majority, actually. That’s what ‘unalienable’ means.

  • DrRock

    Pagan:There is no such thing as an inalienable gay marriage right. Marriage is a civil contract created by government and therefore is “awarded” by human power and can be surrendered, ergo, it can’t be an inalienable right.

  • MylesC

    Paganplace said: “Your ‘scholars’ are misinformed or trying to mislead”Are you saying that an author whose article was accepted for publication in the “Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy” is misinformed? Or if it was his intention to mislead, that everyone involved in the approval process at Harvard was also trying to mislead?I would trust this author’s opinion on the legal ramifications much more than I would trust the opinion of the average discussion board participant.

  • MylesC

    Marcedward1 said: “How would gay marriage destroy anybody’s religious freedom or freedom of speech? I don’t see it, but I’m sure you can explain it.”If you would take the time to read the article that he cites, you would see that it makes a compelling argument based on case law that same-sex marriage and relious freedom are on a collision course.Also, your comment that “Racist churches are prefectly legal.” is not completely true. The Supreme Court ruling in “Bob Jones University v. United States” upheld revoking tax exempt status for racial discrimination.

  • DrRock

    Marced: Don’t you mean to say that you WANT the definition of marriage TO BE a contract between two consenting adults?Traditionally, and as defined by the United States Federal government, Marriage is a union between a man and a woman that results in a husband and a wife. Historically, the Institution of Marriage has always been between a man and a woman. You are proposing a new social experiment and asking government to cram it down everyone’s throats whether its right or wrong, beneficial or harmful, for better or worse – Natural discriminated against homosexual men by making them incapable of becoming wives and mothers. And, nature already discriminated against homosexual women by making them incapable of becoming husbands and fathers.I suppose you ought to file your complaint with nature itself.

  • Paganplace

    Err, no, Dr. Rock. You don’t get to claim that ‘It’s not my bigotry, it’s God and or Nature.’ Battle cry of the abuser. “Look what you’re making me do!” Phhhbt.

  • MylesC

    Paganplace, did you just give him a raspberry?That made me giggle.

  • Paganplace

    Don’t you see, btw, that this is why the Fundies are trying to *amend constitutions: cause they’re trying to do a damn Unconstitutional *thing.* Doesn’t even serve any purpose, now, apart from inflaming the Right and hurting gay people, now that Bush isn’t going to be around to try and shift the power of checks-and-balances away from the courts by making people think they want it. The United States Constitution will not permit these state bans to legalize discrimination, anyway, this is just to hurt us as long as possible.

  • DrRock

    Pagan:If you think Gay marriage should be legal, let’s give you the legal test. Which takes higher precedence?The sexual preferences of adults or the rights of children?

  • sparrow4

    what does the rights of children have to do with sexual preferences? except in the case of pedophiles, in which case there is a very direct connection. By the way, the majority of those are hetero.

  • DrRock

    Sparrow:In your view, which takes higher precedence?The sexual preferences of adults or the rights of children?

  • cdk123

    “So it is painful when any religion forces all of us to live their way by altering the Constitution upon which all our laws are based.”The LDS Church didn’t force anyone to live their way by altering the Constitution. The LDS Church spoke up, people listened and the majority of voters agreed. I respect the rights of Prop 8 opponents to pursue legal methods to change the laws. When they disregard the results of the election as undue influence of a small group they disrespect the franchise of voters.

  • tizlow

    I’m from California and what a battle it was. This was never a civil issue but rather a definition amendment of what marriage is. It is not that we are taking rights away because same sex couples do have the same rights under civil union, they have the same rights as do traditional couples minus the name. These were issues that a majority of the media and the liberals choice not to mention. You see there is a difference between one man and one woman, compare to 2 man or 2 woman. But under the law the word marriage(if it didn’t pass) would mean all are the same. And would have to be taught in school as such. Because whatever the law says goes. Case in point when same sex legalize in Canada the first thing the same sex couples did was get more hate crime laws pass then they sued the churches. Right now if you go to Canada to go to preach you have to sign a paper stating you will not talk about gays or anything from the bible about gays because if you do you will be taken to jail without passing go. Because that is the law of the land. Sometimes you got to do what is good for the people as a whole. You will thank us later.

  • sparrow4

    “I respect the rights of Prop 8 opponents to pursue legal methods to change the laws. When they disregard the results of the election as undue influence of a small group they disrespect the franchise of voters.”- cdk123sp- Such tripe. If the law, no matter how many voted for it- is basically unconstitutional, it will be overturned and the voters will know they made an error due to the fear=mongering of the right. Civil unions DO NOT confer all of the same rights and privileges as marriage. I know you like to believe that but it does not. refusing to recognize gay unions as marriage is done by creating a class known as “alien other” and sticking fellow Americans in it. Nothing like the bullying of the majority to make a civilized society. Oh..wait….I’m thinking…Nazi Germany. What’s next for you guys? Gay camps? special showers for them?Your church whipped you up into a frenzy of fear of fellow Americans. Maybe you don’t know any gays, maybe you have none in your family. I do. guess what? They are pretty much just like you and I. You’re stuck on semantics, not reality, but your sticking point makes you vote to damage and hurt other people, legally and socially. How Christian is that?

  • sparrow4

    ‘It is not that we are taking rights away because same sex couples do have the same rights under civil union, they have the same rights as do traditional couples minus the name. These were issues that a majority of the media and the liberals choice not to mention. You see there is a difference between one man and one woman, compare to 2 man or 2 woman.”- tizlowsp- Again, they don’t. but gee…. you got the biology down pat, huh? Makes me wonder what the big brouhaha is for you people. You act like its a personal insult and will destroy your family and your churches and you whole little rigid right wing world. Did you think married gay people will attack your children (why? We have heteros to do that?) Did you think all your hetero marriages will collapse? (Well, maybe they weren’t that good).Do you think it’s better to live in a country that discriminates against some of its own citizens, that plays up this group as “ungodly” or unnatural to point of them being harrassed or killed, that has so lost touch with its own principles it would rather undermine the Constitution than follow basic humane ethics and morals?Yeah- good job. Not in this country- why don’t you try Bosnia?

  • MylesC

    Sparrow4, why do you have to take things to the extremes? I don’t think that most of the proponents of traditional marriage think that their marriages will fall apart if gay marriage is one day allowed. Nor do we think that our children will be attacked by gay couples.Then you go on to make it sound like we are in favor of harassment and murder of gays. How can you even type such extreme fantasies?Now for a little bit of reality. We are not in favor of any intimidation or violence against gays. We are appalled by those actions. But, as far as the effects of gay marriage, we do think that legalized gay marriage would have long lasting negative effects for society. What will be the precise effects and exactly how soon will they happen, we don’t know? But it is a deeply held belief that changing the traditional definition of marriage will be bad for society in the long run. You may not agree with that, and you don’t have to. Time will tell who is right. In the mean time, stop the name calling and extremism. You’re not doing your cause any justice.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    test

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Sexual orientation is not something a person chooses, anymore than you choose your favorite pie, or your favorite vegetable. It all boils down to what you like and don’t like. Is being gay genetically determined? or hormonally determined? or the result of parental neglect or poor treatment? It would be interesting to know the answer, but it is not relevant to the question, do gay people choose to be gay? Any silly moron should be able to know the answer to this question. And if not, then just ask a gay person. And if you don’t believe the answer, then ask another gay person. They will all thell you that they did not choose it. People do not choose their sexual orientation because there is nothing to choose. Sexual response to stimulus is autonomic, something that just happens to our bodies, apart from our free-will to control it. The adult person inherits sexual orientation by some means that is beyond individual or personal control. Beyond that, then, is the question, how should gay people be regarded?It is the traditional religious position that gay people should be regarded as an “abomination” which is not very specific, but it usually meant to give a green light to general and even extreme mistreatment of gay people on religious grounds.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Part IIThe real problem of society in dealing with gay people, which did not exist when the Constitution was written, is that gay people have found a voice; they are speaking up for their rights, and they are not going to back down until they get ALL of their rights.This is the problem. Homophobic people are aghast that gay people have found a voice and are actually talking back. Homophobic people do not want to be cast as bigots; they have always been the good guys, defending society from “perversion.” Now religious bigotry and homophobia against gay people is exposed, and it is not a pretty site.The problem of gay marriage is not settled in California, and it s not going to be settled until gay marriage is legal and accepted in all 50 states. It might take one year or ten years or a hundred years, but that is how it is going to be.Being gay is not a sin. Repeating this false satement does not make it true. Appealing to Jesus against the gays is futile because Jesus does not hate gays. Likewise, I am sure that such an appeal to God could have almost no meaning. Gay people are normal. Gay people are good; they are as good as straight people. Denial of these facts does not change the facts that gay people are as good as straigt people.It does no good to imagine gay sex, and then condemn people in general for it, because no one knows what kind of sex any particular person may engage in. And if you do not know, then how can you disapprove, without being extremely intrusive in the sex-lives of others.And it does no good so show indivdual examplse of how bad gay people are. Gays in the military is bad? What about the example of Alexander the Great, and his male lover Hysphaistion? Alexander was the greatest conquorer that ever lived. What about Erasmus, intellectual father of the Reformation? What about King James, whose name is attached to the most famous English translation of the Bible? What about Michaelangelo? I suppose all the homophobes would rather have the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel painted in shades of beige plaid?

  • DrRock

    Daniel:”Is being gay genetically determined? or hormonally determined? or the result of parental neglect or poor treatment? It would be interesting to know the answer, but it is not relevant to the question, do gay people choose to be gay?Any silly moron should be able to know the answer to this question. And if not, then just ask a gay person.”This approach won’t due for those who ask scientists, geneticists, and other clinical professionals about the cause and nature of homosexuality. And, what does this have to do with the civil contract of marriage, Daniel?The institution of marriage, as created, defined, and expanded throughout the centuries has to do with heterosexuals and the natural family. All of its obligations, functions, and benefits relate to heterosexuals and by nature, are mostly incompatible with homosexual unions.This is where choice comes into play. If homosexuals want everything about Marriage (a heterosexual institution by nature) then they will have to choose heterosexuality (they will still have same sex attraction) – there is no other way for them to receive “marriage” and everything that it has been, everything it is, and everything it will continue to be, in the future.The compromise between the pro-traditional marriage side and the gay activist side is civil unions and domestic partnerships, if gay activists can persuade voters to vote for such laws. These contracts provide those benefits that are compatible between heterosexuals and homosexuals (property, insurance, workers comp, terminal care, partner leave, etc.)The Institution of Marriage, however, is about wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, and children. It is a social construct that reflects the natural coupling and creation of the human family, that has been developed and refined over centuries for heterosexuals and their children.As a necessary social construct recognized by Government, it deserves protection from outside influences that could threatened the integrity of the institution. You claim that there is no threat, but we are not convinced by your assurances. You say that we’re afraid of homosexuals – when in fact, we don’t fear homosexual feelings or behaviors, but the untested social experiments and its consequences that homosexuals advocate.Heterosexual unions and homosexual unions are radically different. The civil contracts that recognize them, must also be different.Marriage exclusively for Heterosexuals and civil unions for homosexuals.Problem solved.

  • MylesC

    Daniel, I appreciate the way that you set forth your argument in a rational way, trying to avoid name calling or accusations.I agree with alot of what you say, and I would like to offer a few comments from my point of view.I agree that we do not know what makes a person gay, and for the most part, your are right, it doesn’t really matter that much. But I would make a slight distinction between being “gay” and engaging in homosexual activity. Is being gay a sin? No, I don’t think so. There is very little that anyone can do about their preferences or likes/dislikes. Is engaging in homosexual activity a sin? I believe that it is, but I will readily admit that comes from my religious background, and not everyone shares that opinion. Because of that, I don’t go around proclaiming who I think the sinners are. Plus, I try not to judge others when I know that I am not perfect myself.Related to that is another good point you make, that *some* religious people have used the idea that homosexual behavior is an abomination to give themselves license to mistreat gay individuals. For my part, I am sorry that this happens. I hope that those people are held accountable to the law.At this point, my main concern about gay marriage (because I can’t speak for everyone) is the effect it might have on my freedom to practice my religion. I think the majority of people on boths sides of the issue would say that it shouldn’t. Unfortunately, trials are not determined by a vote by the population (for better or worse). I’ve been somewhat surprised by the outcome of some of the lawsuits regarding recognition of same-sex partnerships/marriage that I’ve read about. I can’t predict the future, so I don’t know exactly what would happen. But it does concern me.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    But if the rights of an unpopular minority were up for a thumbs up or thumbs down vote by the majority, Mormons would be run out of the country; they would not be tolerated.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    DrRock : You are not a proper spokesman for the policies of your church, so I suggest that you stop.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr RockBeing gay is not a sin. Repeating this false satement does not make it true. Appealing to Jesus against the gays is futile because Jesus does not hate gays. Likewise, I am sure that such an appeal to God could have almost no meaning. Gay people are normal. Gay people are good; they are as good as straight people. Denial of these facts does not change the facts that gay people are as good as straigt people.You think you are better than other people; you walk around with sure knowledge that gay people are “perverted.” Why don’t you look up the word snob?

  • DrRock

    Daniel:All the more reason why gay fascism must be rejected – they seek to not only be intolerant of Mormons but even right now, want all of their friends to 1) ostracize them from their groups and 2) boycott their business simply because they contributed to a cause that they believe in.Compare that with the Mormons or other Christian groups. They haven’t called for ostricizing gays or boycotting their business because they voted for gay marriage or because they advocate gay marriage.There is a huge lesson in this. At present, the gay movement is unfit to lead in these matters because of their treatment of Mormons and Christians who disagree with them.But these are side issues compared to the main issue of whether or not homosexuals are compatible with the Institution of Marriage.Marriage for heterosexuals and civil unions for homosexuals – this makes the most sense. Homosexuals don’t want to engage in a husband/wife relationship – they want something else – they want a NEW relationship – an experimental, and foreign relationship to the necessary gender roles that human beings engage in to create, shape and form the human family. Creating gay marriage, alienates children’s rights to a mother and a father while civil unions can avoid these issues and are are sufficient for heterosexual couples.

  • theOtter

    “California’s constitutional amendment was bankrolled largely by the Mormon Church”….First of all, thanks so much for referring to Latter-day Saints by such a horrible slur. Have you boycotted Niggers, Spics, and Yids lately, too?Secondly, the Church donated less than $5,000 towards Proposition 8 in California, and every penny of it was in the form of a handful of Church leaders’ plane tickets, to attend a meeting.Third, and finally, some members of the Church donated to “No on 8” charities, too. Do you have a problem with that?I’m sorry to be so blunt, but I’m really sick of people committing libel against the Church of Jesus Christ and getting away with it. Thank goodness the Church is more Christian than I, or it would probably have already slapped you with a law suit.

  • theOtter

    “California’s constitutional amendment was bankrolled largely by the Mormon Church”….First of all, thanks so much for referring to Latter-day Saints by such a horrible slur. Have you boycotted Niggers, Spics, and Yids lately, too?Secondly, the Church donated less than $5,000 towards Proposition 8 in California, and every penny of it was in the form of a handful of Church leaders’ plane tickets, to attend a meeting.Third, and finally, some members of the Church donated to “No on 8” charities, too. Do you have a problem with that?I’m sorry to be so blunt, but I’m really sick of people committing libel against the Church of Jesus Christ and getting away with it. Thank goodness the Church is more Christian than I, or they probably have already slapped you with a law suit.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:You said:I can’t find anywhere in Christian religious scripture where God hates his children for being human, with all of the limitations and weaknesses it brings.However, we do find many instances where God punishes the disobedient and has decreed that such will not inherit a place with him after death.So while God loves the sinner and eternally abhors the sin, this does not answer the question of what will happen to the obedient or the disobedient.Saying, “We’ll God doesn’t hate gays.” Still doesn’t answer the question about whether God condones homosexual acts. You will be hard pressed to find Christian texts that condone homosexual activity, and you will find many references where scripture includes it with other sins.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Being gay is not a sin. Being gay is not bad. Gay people do not need to justify their existence to Mormons, a group that many Americans consider to be Godless agents of Satan, not that that is what I think, but maybe we had not better put it to a vote.Being gay in not perverted or a perversiom. Sex between gay people is not perverted or a perversion. Dr. Rock, if you want to discuss perverted sex, then please tell us on this thread EXACTLY what sex acts you engage in, because if you do not, then we cannot be sure you are not perverted also, and if we cannot be sure, then you are suspect.You are the one with the FILTHY and dirty mind, imagining gay sex, and then condemning it as perversion. You picture the graphic logistics of other people’s sex lives; why? YOu are too interested in gay sex.We have already established that you are a person of very limited intellectual capactiy. You have villified and demonized gay people. But you should not worry about gay people and gay couples over-running Utah; Utah is not a fit place for gay people to love; you and people have made sure of that, so matter how this turns out, it is not likely to disturb your blissful ignorance outside of your silly and naive “Kingdom of God.”Oh yes, and by the way, Pagan Place said on another thread, “Bullies forfeit their right to whine.” So stop whining and face life LIKE A MAN INSTEAD OF A WHIMPY SISSY.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:I’ll ignore your emotional rant and invite you back into a scientific and rational discussion about history and human biology.The question you should be asking yourself is whether or not homosexuality is necessary for human beings. We can have differing opinions of whether or not it is a sin, but let’s look at it from a scientific point of view.What purpose do homosexual feelings serve within the human species? Are they necessary? Can you answer that question?Are you able to rationally approach these intellectual and scientific questions?You seem to know all about being gay and you claim that your arguments are rational and intellectual.Heterosexuality has a necessary and beneficial function within the human species.Please explain what purpose homosexual attraction serves within the human species? To what end?

  • DrRock

    Daniel:More questions about the fitness of homosexuals for Marriage.Which type of sexual preference is more monogamous by nature? Heterosexuals or homosexuals?Or do you think they are both equally monogamous?Should married couples be strictly monogamous?

  • sparrow4

    “Now for a little bit of reality. We are not in favor of any intimidation or violence against gays. We are appalled by those actions.”- mylescYou are obviously not reading a lot of these posts. And as far as violence against gays- you’re in denial. It’s very real. But my point in using hyperbole is that you understand there is a connection. You cannot deny any group their equality in all things without demeaning them- overtly or covertly. No one is saying gays will have the right to be married in your church. Freedom of religion is not going to be abridged. (the incident in Canada was because the -I think he was a bishop was so inflammatory against gays.).But there is no reason why gays should not be entitled to getting married in a civil ceremony- and that’s what religious groups are trying to infringe on. You think it’s innocuous and I’m quite sure you personally would never physically attack a gay person, but this denial causes them a great deal of pain nonetheless.How to make you see how easy it is for people to segue from denying them the right to marry into beat em up they aren’t human. It’s too easy. And some of the people posting here are way out of line (ccnl comes to mind right off the bat). Maybe as a Jew I’m particularly sensitive to what can happen. It wasn’t like Hitler said one day. “let’s kill all the Jews, and gays, and disabled, and priests.” He built up to it, little by little whittling away the things that unify all of us and putting wedges in between. It’s starts small, with stupid little things you think shouldn’t matter- but they do.

  • DrRock

    Sparrow:Why do homosexuals need “Marriage” which is historically and traditionally a union between a man and a woman?The reality is… they do not. Homosexuals want to change Marriage to mean something else, the least of which has to do with fidelity, monogamy, wives, husbands, fathers, mothers, and children.They want to push the parameters of sex, sexuality, and family and in the process transform the very fabric of society.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Part IIYou have heard these falsce doctrines villifying and demonizing gay people for so long that you have lost the ability to think for yourself. Your church has stolen your free will. For this reason, I would suggest that you leave the Mormon Church. You will never be happy as a Mormon drone, listening to and repeating false doctrines and lies about how wicked and evil gay people are, when in fact, gay people are not wicked or evil; gay people are good.If it bothers to share the world with people placed upon the earth by God the way God made them, then that is a problem, isn’t, for that puts you in direct conflict with God.You asked,”What purpose do homosexual feelings serve within the human species? Are they necessary? Can you answer that question?”I don’t understand you question. Isn’t it the same quetion that Hitler asked about the Jews? What purpose can the feelings of these people be? If the answer is “none” then they can be gotten rid of. What makes your feelings more real and purposeful than anyone else’s? Is it because you are Mormon?Mormons regard all other groups as apostate. I know this to be true because the missinaries told me so. If you deny it, you are lying, and because you are lying, you know it is wrong. Yet it is still your belief, that all others are apostates. Mormons want respect but they do not offer respect to others.You said:I suppose by that, you mean, having children. The last time I looked there were about 7,000,000,000 people on the earth, most of them living in squalid poverty. Why do you think it is good to make more and more babies, when the world is already overpopulated? At least gay people are not contributing to this. In addition to that, you insult heterosexual people who either do not have children or who cannot have children. This is once again a matter of disrespect; Mormons want it, but they do not give it.Your questions are not scientific; they are childish. Your repeated use of the word “nature” is neither part of standard Christian theology, nor is it a feature of Orthodox Mormonism, nor is it scientific. In fact, most Christisns regard “nature” as something for people to rise above. So your conception of nature and what is “natural” is your own personal invention, and it is not very impressive or convincing.The fact is, that gay people DO exist everywhere upon the earth. The question is not why they exist; that is an absurd question; the question is “respect” something that you want, but will not give an inch on. You are too superior to give respect to others. That is an off-putting attitude, even obnoxious.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Part I”More questions about the fitness of homosexuals for Marriage.Which type of sexual preference is more monogamous by nature? Heterosexuals or homosexuals?Or do you think they are both equally monogamous?Should married couples be strictly monogamous?”Dr. RockI believe that in personal matters, that people make their own arrangements and they do not need my permmission or approval. The very fact that you feel so free to make such inquiries shows that you are a real busy body, with a childish and prurient interest in the sex lives of other people. On matters of sexuality, I think you should mind your own business, and let others mind their own. Sexual orientation is not a big deal. You and your religion have exagerated its importance all out of proportion to what it really is. You ask the most extremely absurd and stupid questions such as:”The question you should be asking yourself is whether or not homosexuality is necessary for human beings.”Who do you think made homosexuals? How do you think they got here? They are the sons and daughters of pious people like you, and simply appear in families all over the world, in all places, in roughly the same percentages. How do you think this comes about? In the creation of existence, do you think that you have a better plan and a better way? Well then, tell us, if you could get rid of God and make the world over better than God has, then just what would you do? You arrogance is border-line God-envy; your arrogance in dismissing the very existence of gay people borders on Hitler’s final solution to get rid of the Jews. What possible use could the world have for Jews? That was the German question. They had an answer for Jews similar to your implied answer for gay people. Gay people are not bad, they are not sinful, they are not perverted. When you villify and demonize gay people in the name of Jesus and God, then you are spreading false doctrines. You can listen to false doctrines all you want, and can repeat them over and over to yourself and to others, but that does not make a false doctrine true.

  • sparrow4

    “The reality is… they do not. Homosexuals want to change Marriage to mean something else, the least of which has to do with fidelity, monogamy, wives, husbands, fathers, mothers, and children.They want to push the parameters of sex, sexuality, and family and in the process transform the very fabric of society.”first of all I simply don’t know why you should care. How does this personally affect you? If allowing gays to have legal and social marriages under civil law threatens you, you have to ask yourself why. Traditions change. Definitions change- just look at the history of language. Science learns more.Society evolves. Hopefully it grows wiser- look what happened with interracial marriage. It used to be illegal in certain states. When the miscegnation laws were overturned did the world come to an end? No. Did interracial marriage destroy white people? No. Did people start giving birth to 3 headed babies that looked like pinto ponies? No. So what possible reason is there to think gay marriage is going to destroy the institution of marriage unless you let it?Gays want the legal and social recognition of their relationships just as heteros do. The only way marriage, fidelity, traditional family roles and sexuality will be fundamentally changed is if you change it- not gays. So what if they can’t give birth to children or without in vitro? Heteros adopt and use in vitro. So what exactly are you afraid of? You don’t ever have to deal with a gay person if you don’t want to. They don’t want to change the fabric of society- they want to be part of it.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr. RockSame-sex marriage, is a grass-roots mass movement involving millions of people, both gay and straight, with a motivated purpose to be free and equal. Like it or not, that is how it is. Gay people exist among us in the world, and contribute greatly to it. They are not just “nothing;” they are not “God’s mistakes;” they are not going away; they are not going Now they want ALL their rights; there is nothing complicated about it; it is happening, and it is going to happen.What part of that don’t you understand?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    The purpose of homosexuality is to moderate the overpopulation of the earth and to test the hypocrisy of Christians, to test the instruction and obligations of Jesus, that says, to love your neighober, love your enemy, do good to those that hate you, for if you love only those that love you, then what is the credit in that.You fail the test. On the centraol theme of Christianity, you are ignorant and blank; instead you are eaten-up with the top-down legalistic instruction of false doctrines.Instead of dodging the real questions here about the false doctrines that you promote regarding the legitimacy of gay people to exist upon the earth, even as millions of gay people exist, you insist on repeating you childish and simple minded questions.Your belief is that all people are born in sin, but no one is born gay, but that being gay is a sin. You believe that Jesus is a real person with a real body. You believe that Heaven is at the end of a succession Celestial Planets. You believe that all men can achievce the level of God, and can be like God. YOu believe that all of these men (and women) become like God, and are in fact a socity of Gods. YOu believe in the higher Celestial Planets inhabited by thousands of Gods. You believe not only in Father God and Father Gods, but you also believe in Mother God and Mother Gods. You believe the Angel Moroni, a “personage” with a real physical body, appeared to Josehph Smith, and showed him the golden plates, which Moroni CONVENIENTLY took back to Heaven.You have ZERO credibility to comment on anyone, much less gay people. I do not believe that the purpose of life is to have children. I do not believe that BECAUSE I AM NOT A MORMON. So, in your argument to convince of the wickedness of being gay, it is not necessary for you to cite Mormon doctrine or theology, because as I said before I AM NOT MORMON and I do not believe the purpose of life is to have children.

  • sparrow4

    Daniel- you forgot the holy undies. Now isn’t it strange they think their underwear implies a covenant with G-d yet want us to take their anti-gay stance seriously? Excuse me, said the Mormon guyThe odd thing is I would ordinarily never make fun of another’s religion- but as I see it, the Mormons want to impose their ideas on the rest of us by manipulating referendum, they’ll just have to endure the push-back. What kills me is they sound so surprised at the reaction. But then, when you slither through society without a real understanding of what democracy means, you have to deal with the consequences. The Mormons seem particularly insensitive on many scores. well…too bad. I have gay relatives and friends who are now hurting because of them.

  • DrRock

    The Causes of Same-sex Attraction Disorder in Men”SSAD in MenThe three most important risk factors for the development of SSAD in men are weak masculine identity, mistrust of women, and narcissism.Weak Masculine IdentityWeak masculine identity is easily identified and, in my clinical experience, is the major cause of SSAD in men. Surprisingly, it can be an outgrowth of weak eye-hand coordination which results in an inability to play sports well. This condition is usually accompanied by severe peer rejection. In a sports-oriented culture such as our own, if a young boy is unable to throw, catch, or kick a ball, he is likely to be excluded, isolated, and ridiculed. Continued rejection can be a major source of conflict for a child and teenager. In an attempt to overcome feelings of loneliness and inadequacy, he may spend more time on academic studies or fostering comfortable friendships with girls. The “sports wound” will negatively affect the boy’s image of himself, his relationships with peers, his gender identity, and his body image. His negative view of his masculinity and his loneliness can lead him to crave the masculinity of his male peers.

  • DrRock

    Second Cause of Same Sex-attraction in MenThe second and crucial conflict in the development of a weak masculine identity is a poor emotional relationship with the father. A number of therapists characterize the childhood experiences of the homosexual adult as a form of defensive detachment from a disappointing father. As children and adolescents, these men yearned for acceptance, praise, and physical affection from their fathers, but their needs were never met. The profound inner void that develops from a lack of physical affection and father love can lead a man to promiscuous behavior in a misguided attempt to fill an emotional emptiness.Another reason that some men have a weak masculine identity is poor body image. I have found that many active homosexual men are totally obsessed with other men’s bodies. They often express hatred for their own bodies and desire the bodies of other men. A final reason can be a history of sexual abuse by older, more powerful children or by adults. Such abuse over a prolonged period of time may have made the child believe that he must be a homosexual.

  • sparrow4

    drrock- SADDly for you, you’re no expert. Your information so so out of date and so from whatever fundamentalist dobson-like website you found. You might want to actually look up reputable research information and data from real scientists and psychologists.While reputable researchers say that there is no one factor that “creates” homosexuality, they do say it is a complex mix if genetics, biology and environment. Pretty much the same factors that determine heterosexuality. But they agree, one does not “choose” to be homosexual. One “is” or develops that way= again pretty much the way heteros do.

  • DrRock

    Sparrow:Heterosexuality has a well defined and connected purpose in human identity.However, homosexuality serves no purpose. If homosexuality was necessary it would have a well defined and connected purpose in human identity.When you say “genetics” we must clearly state that there is no gay gene. There is no gene present in humans of large effect to influence sexual orientation. True orientation is determined by the biological identity of male or female in normal humans.Homosexuality, same-sex attraction, serves no biological purpose.Heterosexuality is opposite sex attraction which creates, forms, and shapes the human species and made, makes, and will make it possible for the human species to 1) exist, 2) survive, and 3) thrive.If same-sex attraction disappeared tomorrow, there would only be MORE harmony between the natural sexes of male and female.If heterosexuality disappeared tomorrow, the human species would not survive.Which one is the disorder and which one is the natural order of human existence?Heterosexuality is necessary and homosexuality is not.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Part III know how Mormons feel about the underwear, because I have asked them and they have told me. (Remember, I have entertained Mormon missionaries in my home many times). They don’t really care one way or the other; it is “required” if you want to be “in good standing” which is a status that gets you privileges within the Mormon organization, admittance into a Temple, for example. You see, just plain old people cannot go into a Temple; you must be a Mormon “in good standing” and that means wear the underwear, and be outwardly, and otherwise “as normal as possible” no matter how you may feel inwardly.Anyway, this Dr. Rock is a hopeless case. I cannot even say that you are a bigot; you are rather an ignorant and incurious person, who has marianated a whole life in the vinegar of Mormon culture, and cannot really be expected to know, understand, or entertain anything outside of your circumscribed and cloistered existence.But please do not be afraid of gay people. You will most likely never encounter “one” in your circles, but even you did, he won’t bite you.I do not think that my stand against Mormon Proselytizing and intrusive Mormon ifluence is intolerant or bigotted, because I believe that rejection of intolerance is not the same as intolerance. And I believe that bigotry is corrosive and toxic, but I beleive that my criticisms of you are healthy and GOOD for you, and that you NEED to hear these things, just so you do not get too carried away in your homophobic fantasy that you are in the right and all the world agrees with you.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Part II have never heard of “Same-sex-attraction-in Men Disorder.” That is some kind of weird psycho-babble that you have dug up from an antiquated past. As I said, the truth is not taught in Utah.As Sparrow said earlier, why do you even care? Utah is the one place on earch that gay people would AVOID like the plague. It is the most gay-unfriendly state, even worse than Mississippi, even worse than Alabama. Utah is not a fit place for gay people to live, nor even visit. I am sure that most gay people who have the misfortune to be born there, LEAVE for good, as soon as they possibly can. So why are you so bothered by it? Your top-down theology has pretty much got the whole place walled-off from the rest of the (real) world.While there is no such thing as “Same-sex attraction in Men Disorder,” there is such a thing as “religious mania” which can be either an obssessive compulsive neurosis, or it can also be full-blown psychotic illness. This type of mental illness often centers around the person of Christ in which case it can be called a “Jesus-mania” and please rest assured, it is a very real mental illness. In the South, where I come from, it is called “being eat up with Jesus.” Every town has some, and they always have a little fame as the town kooks. (Sometimes, there are whole families of them.)I do not find the Mormon underwear to be all that weird. First of all, I have seen them; they look pretty standard, kind of old fashioned, kind of cool, even. (How did I get a look at them? I guess I won’t tell that). But the fact is, I do not think I care to comment on the type of underwear other people wear. And I put this in the category of simple child-like ceremonies, without any particular meaning, even to the people who feel obligated to go along.

  • DrRock

    Sparrow:The most you will get from these is the word “seem.”That “this or that” “seems” a certain way. I have done the research and the word “seems” isn’t convincing. You replace the word “seems” with the word “proves.”The head of the Human Genome project, Dr. Francis Collins, published in 2007 that “homosexuality is not hardwired.”But with you, what is the point of quoting any science in the favor of the idea that homosexuality is a disorder when you’re entrenched in your position solely because you want to be right?Sparrow, you can’t even recognize human identities properly – how could you ever expect to look at these issues, setting your emotions aside?Emotion drives you to these positions – not science or biology.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:If the human purpose of homosexuality is to “moderate the overpopulation of the planet” then by your own argument, it has no business engaging in Marriage which is an Institution for wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, and children – THE INSTITUTION that populates the planet. Your response did not answer the original question – what purpose does homosexuality serve within the human species, to what end?I suspect you really do not understand or know the purpose of homosexuality in the human species. Why? Because there isn’t one. It’s a disorder. It’s a confusing abnormality. It’s a contradiction in nature. But because “feelings” are involved, and difficult to process and understand, the gay movement has attempted to turn those feelings into a new gender of its own without scientific evidence. Millions of people have been deceived by this ignorant and self-centered gender fantasy.The purpose of life is first reflected in biological identity. The reason why refuse to acknowledge that one of the purposes of human life is to have children is because you haven’t reduced human concepts to their most fundamental level. You are hindered by modern technology, false ideologies (meant to serve an agenda), and personal feelings that you don’t understand or are unable to process.Your ideology or faith is incompatible with the most basic understanding of human identity. You deny the existence of true male and female. In your head, it’s all mixed up. A culmination of contradictions that you haven’t been able to work through. When you are confronted with reality or with existence, you let your feelings get in the way.When we reduce the human species down to its first unit, what do we find? Male and female. In order for you to exist, all of those humans, in your line, engaged in their most fundamental purpose, which is procreation. But the sperm and the egg weren’t enough in the long process of development – in order for you to exist, wives, husbands, mothers and fathers also had to exist and they had to perform their human functions of creating, forming and shaping the human family – your family. Why are you here? Because the humans before you embraced their purpose in life. Mormonism did not “invent” this human reality, it AFFIRMS it and celebrates it.That you choose not to have children is your own affair, but you can’t reasonably and truly deny that the purpose of human beings is to have children – to deny such is to deny human identity.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:You said:I showed my wife your statement and she laughed out loud. Why? Because my professional and home life is just the opposite, having had the privilege of traveling the world, and having a very “un-Mormon” experience, while remaining faithful to my convictions. To you Daniel, anyone who opposes you and doesn’t gush over your appeals to emotion and ignorance, is ignorant, incurious and marinated in “faith.”I find that your inability to articulate why homosexuality is necessary or has a definable purpose within the human species, just more evidence that I am right about you -Ultimately your positions are based on your emotions and not on existence or on true human identities.Your message about Jesus Christ is also incomplete. While you extol Jesus’ teachings to love one another and love enemies, you fail to disclose that you’re defining “love” a whole new way than Jesus did.What you mean to say is that if I oppose your views, then I am not “loving” you. This is an untenable position viewing all of Jesus’ sayings in context.In short, its a ploy at manipulation – to use one’s deepest convictions against them.Loving one’s neighbor does not mean acceptance of all of one’s neighbors views or behaviors. Loving one’s enemy does not mean surrender to an enemy’s demands.The question that must be asked is whether or not you know this. If you do, then your approach, quoting Christian teachings, is dishonest.If you don’t know this, then I invite you to process these concepts more deeply so you can see that the “issue” pivots on the definition of “love” and whether that means EMBRACING your neighbor’s beliefs as your own, or surrendering your life to your enemy without conditions.Try the scientific principle of reduction when processing these concepts – it will serve you well.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Wow Dr. Rock. You must just about the smartest person in the entire world. Don’t you agree Sparrow?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr Rock”Love” means “love.” Your qualifications transform “love” into something else. What? I do not know.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:You said:No. I am not the smartest person in the entire world. But I certainly find it interesting that you are unable to intelligently and directly interact and respond to my criticisms of your views.Try out the scientific principle – reduce your views to their first principles and defend them.Let’s see what turns up.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Mormonism is not true. Mormonism is false. An angel did not appear to Joseph Smith. God did not tell Joseph Smith to take many wives; it was his own animal lust that told him to do these things. All if built on fantasy and invention. Joseph Smith was not innocent in the altecation that lead to his arrest and death, but he destroyed the printing press of a newspaper. The angry reaction lead to his death. Do they teach this to you in Utah, or do get only a Soviet styled “pravda” in your upbringing?Your intolerant religon is a steamy brew of Egyption worship of the dead, Hinduism with many Gods, Greco-Roman idol worship in which the Gods are the same as physical men, with a harsh dose of Calvinism, and Catholic top-down regimentation.I understand Mormoninsm, probably better than you do. But I do not approve of it. And I am not one.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr. RockI am a scientist with an advanced degree, so it is not necessary for a dim bulb like you to instruct me on science.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr. RockIn my day job, I am a physicst, but my personal and spiritual interest is in the nature of subjective consciousness.I do not expect you to be able to comprehend anythng on that subject, so I would not try to go into it.But, you have not changed my view on homosexuality, that gay people are good andd normal, and you are the one who seems peculiar to me.

  • DrRock

    Daniel: (Part II)God said, “if ye love me, keep my commandments.”Biblically speaking, “loving others” does not include disobedience to God’s commandments.* God created man and woman to be joined together. Genesis 1:27) * God’s first commandment to mankind is to multiple and replenish the earth. Homosexual marriage is a mockery of this commandment. They are unable to fulfill it. (Gen 1:28) * God renewed this commandment with Noah. (Gen 9:1) Homosexuals by nature, cannot fulfill this commandment. * Homosexual sex is prohibited and is an abomination before God. (Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13) * Homosexual sex is called “vile affections” by God; where two men leave the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust on toward another, acting unseemly between them and receiving IN THEMSELVES the recompense of error. (Romans 1:26-27) * Homosexual sex is referred to as “abusers of themselves with mankind” – such will not inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Cor 6:9) * Homosexuals are referred to as “them that defile themselves with mankind” and who must follow the laws of God. ( 1 Timothy 1:9-10) * Men were created for women, and women for men – there is no other union possible with God. Joining males or joining females is an affront to God. (Mattthew 19:4-5) * Neither is the man without the woman or the woman without the man in the Lord – there is no other union. (1 Cor. 11:11)There is no mainstream religion on record that condones or approves of embracing homosexual behavior, including gay marriage, as part of the definition of “Christian love.” There is no record of any God anywhere approving of homosexual behavior or homosexual marriage.Remember, you made an appeal to Christianity. I didn’t.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:If you’re a scientist, and you have a personal interest in subjective consciousness, then please reduce subjective consciousness to its first principles and show how beliefs in God based on the primacy of consciousness, is not pure fantasy.Because, the Supreme consciousness of God exists, right? By all means, please provide evidence of this consciousness.Ok, at least provide the first philosophical principles why God, as a subjective consciousness, 1) could exist, 2) how anyone would know, and 3) why it should be considered at all.For a scientist like yourself, this should be an easy couple of paragraphs to write.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Mental conformity to doctrine or dogma is not belief; and fundamentalist certainty is not faith.With regards to religious belief, all is speculative. A lot of people don’t want to acknowledge that this is true.Today, the cat is out of the bag; Pandora is out of the box; the Jinni is out of the bottle; with regards to Christianity, there is no human authority to tell us what the Bible means or what God wants us to do.In the Mormon Church, mental conformity to doctrine is required, as though there is something wrong with being true to your own inner beliefs. But the church authority doesn’t mean much; it is all custom and tradition and respect (or lack of it); no one is going to be burned at the stake anymore for believing outside of the confomrity of doctrine. And in the Protestant churches, all authority is shattered and fragmented. They are divided up, group into group, each with their own authority, and the multitude of individuals claiming authority, interpreting “key” points with many differing shades of meaning. The Protestant motto should be “how many ways can we split a hair?”And in this struggle for authority, the passions of religious fervor are let loose, and can descend into animalistic brutishness and verge on the maniacal, and even to insanity.And in among all of this cacophonous furor, there may be some people, quiet and unnoticed, who want to follow the teachings of Jesus and seek to live a Christ-like life.You are just another, not very convincing, voice.

  • MylesC

    How do you know he’s not one of the ones that’s trying to follow Jesus and seeking to live a Christ-like life?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    A person cannot “know” of the existence of God, and I do not say that I do. And I think, logically, most true “people of faith” would have to admit that that is how they also think. It is only when religion becomes all wrapped up in political affairs and institutions that the truth of one belief or another has real political meaning, or threat, that it becomes necessary to “prove” your religious belief beyond doubt, and to label people of differnt beliefs as heretics, apostates, or infidels. When Christians, Moslems, or Jews become upset with atheists and call them foolish, and alot worse, what they really mean is that atheists are “heretics, apostates, and ifidels.” But, this is, of course, all childish nonsense.If, I, as a Christian, say I believe in God, it is by no scientific proof that I would say such a thing. For I know that there is no scienctific evidence pointing to the existence of God, and I definitely do respect science as a very successful and credible way of looking at the world. A sincere belief in God, is a sort of way of looking at mysteries, which we cannot really explain, and a way to set your mind on a peaceful course; faith does not mean knowlege; these are two very different concepts; yet, I aknowlege, few people would make the distinction, in trying to impose their own beliefs on others. Religious arguing is pointless, because people do not form their religous beliefs based on arguments with people trying to convert them or change them. The development of belief is a mysterious confluence of experiential contingencies, moderated and filtered by the acuity of ones own senses, and the dexterity and cleverness of ones own inteligence.The emergence of belief is something that comes to you as you mature; it seeps into your mind, and is sculpted and formed by your own personal doubts, and by your own psychological reactions to doubt and its consequent fears. The emergence of belief is something mysterious, as mysterious as just about any other aspect of our lives. You cannot argue me out of mine, nor I argue you out of yours.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Because of his mental conformity to doctrine which is a political motivation, not a religous one.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    I ask that my beliefs be freely acknowledged as those beliefs that come from my own true heart, and not from someone else’s alien heart. That is the ultimate problem of the Fundamentalist’s interaction with outsiders and un-believers–that they seem to think that they can force belief upon an unbelieving heart, when they cannot. I wouldn’t mind sharing the world with Fundamentalists and fundamentalism, if they would only acknowledge that my beliefs are different than their own. Even if they know they are right and they know I am wrong, still, my wrong belief is my belief and no amount of lobbying or intimidation can cause my feelings to shift. The most that Fundamentalists can extract from me is a deception, that I acknowledge outwardly that they are right, and I am wrong, while inwardly holding to the beliefs of my true heart. This is how I am when I interact with the Mormon Proselytizers; I am like this because they are so pushy, they leave me no choice.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    My thoughts go where they will. My beliefs form independently of my will to form them. Perhaps my beliefs are me, and therefore I cannot make them happen, but instead, they make me happen.

  • DrRock

    Daniel (part II)While Hinduism professes many gods, Mormonism asserts that there is one God, the Father, a real being, who is matter, energy, light and glory, who exists in reality, and in whose image we are made. We also assert that Jesus Christ is God the Son, and that the Holy Ghost is also God – three separate beings, unified in a single purpose of bringing to pass the immortality andMormonism asserts the immutable principles of justice and mercy and rejects the tenets of Calvinism. It rejects the Catholic organization which replaced Apostles with Bishops. The Church of Jesus Christ, while hierarchical, is operated at the smallest of units, called a ward or aThe testimony of Jesus, as defined in the New Testament and by the restoration through Joseph Smith, is grounded in real experience that can beCompare that experience with the doctrine of “negative theology” or subjective consciousness, and there is no real comparison. Experiences in

  • MylesC

    When there are opposing viewpoints on a matter of social policy, what is to be done? What happens when we disagree on the best way for society to go? What happens when individuals have strongly held, opposing opinions? How can they reconcile their opposition?Daniel, I would appeal to your very well written explanation of beliefs and faith on behalf of those whom you wrote against. Don’t those who disagree with you deserve the same tolerance that you are asking for? Don’t they deserve to not have someone else’s beliefs forced on them (as you put it)? In the end, we disagree on this subject. But can’t we just be OK with that? Can’t we respect each other’s points of view without belittling them? Isn’t that what living together peacefully is all about?

  • DrRock

    Daniel: (Part I)I highly doubt that you know more about Mormonism or understand it better than I do. So far you have accurately represented Mormonism, here and there,But I am willing and able to respectfully respond to any argument or criticism you have.Mormonism is the only religion or faith rooted in reality or in substance, matter and energy. God’s visitation to Joseph Smith removed centuries ofMoroni, (referred to as an angel, an English word meaning messenger), was a real living and breathing human being who died, and was physicallyMoroni was a tangible being. He gave Joseph Smith tangible objects. Joseph Smith translated a tangible record on golden plates. Joseph Smith’s wife, and 13 others physically handled the golden plates. The record was first written on real manuscript paper. It was published and became a real book, that you can hold in your hand. You can read real words on its pages. You can test the principles written on its pages. It now enjoys archaeological support that evidences part of its narrative.Joseph Smith was murdered in cold blood at the hands of a mob. He was an imperfect human being that God used to restore part of the truth about human existence and the destiny of every human being beyond death. Your criticisms about his “polygamy” are inconsistent with your views of “love” and “sexual preferences.”The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is very tolerant of other religions and creeds. However, we refuse to give up our principles to make others feel better about us. In the United States and elsewhere, we voted to keep the traditional definition of marriage.We do not worship the dead but believe that they are entitled to receive every blessing from God given during earth life, regardless of when or where they were born or lived. Mormonism rejects the belief in a Supreme consciousness that does not exist as matter or energy. Such is a fantasy.

  • DrRock

    Daniel (Part B)The Book of Mormon is the key to understanding God, his nature, his power, and his love. God has provided a way to let each human know whether they are open or closed to new principles. How one approaches and handles (attitudes and openness) the Book of Mormon will determine if one is ready to receive the SIMPLE knowledge and assurance of God’s laws and the true nature of reality, and cut through centuries of debate and confusion..Human beings have many flaws. There are millions of people on the planet that know that smoking is damaging to their health and the health of others, but yet continue to inflict damage on themselves and others. So, there is no guarantee that knowledge of immutable laws alone will make a convert of someone. Millions have tested the promise whether or not reading the Book of Mormon and praying to God about it for confirmation, will result in a real measurable response. Millions have received the confirming witness from God that it is true. This is very different from learning dogma or being “indoctrinated” by a religious organization through regimented training. The 250,000 plus converts who join Mormonism each year, do so, listening to 4-6 simple lessons taught by mostly uneducated 19 year olds, and then responding to that promise. The missionaries challenge people to a simple formula: read the Book of Mormon with an openness, remembering God’s mercy, with a sincere desire to confirm that it’s true, and God will tell you directly, through the power of the Holy Ghost.What could be more simple and pure than that? Nearly everyone on the planet can do that – it is within everyone’s power to test that promise. No complex philosophy classes needed. No doctorate degrees in theology needed. Just direct and clear communication from God.That is the pure and simple message of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – that God is a real personable being, and that you can communicate directly with him.

  • DrRock

    Daniel (Part A)I just read your last post, and while I respect your view, it is, of course, rooted in its own biases, preconceived ideas about religion, God, faith, mysteries, etc. I have a question for you – you admit that you don’t know who, what, or where God is but then you claim Mormonism is “false.” If you are unable to identify God yourself, how could you ever say whether this religion or that religion has or has not found God? Based on what known standard to make such judgments? Can you see the quandary? You admit that you have no ability to identify God but emphatically declare that others are wrong who claim to have identified him.You said “faith does not mean knowledge.” I know you don’t agree with me, and I know that you will most likely never consider Mormonism, but I can sincerely tell you that faith, can in fact lead to knowledge – real knowledge of real things as they were, as they are, and as they are to come. This knowledge is different from a mere belief or a hope of things, but is assured through confirmation from God himself. This is precisely the message of Mormonism: that God is real, that God is personable, and that anyone can communicate with God and receive confirmation of him and communication from him.I believe that God does not want us stumbling around in the dark. We have a real universe, a real world, a real existence that can be identified in reality. This existence is independent of my consciousness and yours. If everyone on the planet were to fall dead today, the universe and the world would continue to exist tomorrow. This is more evidence that our reality is not dependent on our consciousness. We have a real universe that consists of real laws, none of which are dependent upon my “view” of them. They existed before I opened my eyes in this world, and they will continue to operate after I close my eyes and leave this world. I agree that arguing about the tenets of religion, when both parties are committed to their point of view, is pointless. One cannot learn a true principle unless one is open to new discovery without preconceived biases. Then comes the testing. The world’s religions (except Mormonism) ask its adherents to embrace a God outside our known reality. I find this a completely unappealing and untenable position considering the nature of what a consciousness is.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    My point is, gay marriage is coming. The Mormon view on it is irrelevant, because it is coming. All your explantions about what causes people to be gay, and how being gay in unnatural and will ruin society are pointless. It is coming, and there is nothing that you can do to stop it. You can spend all your efforts for the rest of your life campaigning against the rights of gay people, but will be all a waste. Or you can do something more constructive. The ball is in your court.

  • sparrow4

    “When you say “genetics” we must clearly state that there is no gay gene. There is no gene present in humans of large effect to influence sexual orientation. True orientation is determined by the biological identity of male or female in normal humans.” drrockI would say on the basis of this comment that you don’t know much about genetics and biology. genetics has everything to do with how the human body develops. And much of that biology affects the brain, gender identity, personality, etc. Why should homosexuality have to serve a purpose other than allowing other humans to establish relationships with one another? Maybe there are more ways to ensure the survival of the human race than you are aware of- humanity is not just about reproduction. Although you disagree, even non-reproducing members of the human have contributed a very great deal to the human race. And they deserve to have a full and equal place in it. I’ll leave you with this little list to mull that over.edward Albee, Alvin Ailey, Horatio Alger, Peter Allen, W.H.Auden, Fancis Bacon, Joan Baez, James Baldwin, Balenciaga, Leonard Bernstein,Marlon Brando, rupert brooke, Lord Byron, John cage, Truman capote, Willa Cather, John Cheever, van Cliburn, Montgomery clift, Roy Cohn, Noel Coward, Hart Crane, George Cukor, Countee Cullen, Merce Cunningham, Marlen Dietrich, Christian Dior, daphne Du Maurier, Isadora Duncan, Bret easton Elliot,Malcolm Forbes, E.M.Forster, greta garbo, Frederick Garcia Lorca, Judy garland, Will geer, Liberace, sir John Gielgud, Richard Halliburton, Lorenz Hart (Of Rodgers & Hart), A.E. Housman, Langston Jughes, Rock Hudson, william Inge (playwright- Picnic), Derek Jacoby, Elton John, Jasper Johns, Phillip Johns, angeline Jolie (bi-sexual), John Maynard Keynes, Leonardo Da Vinci, Michaelangelo, Shakespeare, Ian McKellan, Gian carlo Menotti (Amahl and the Night Visitors composer),Ismail Merchant (Merchant-Ivory Films), Jim Morrison, Anais Nin, Rudolf Nureyev,Laurence Olivier, Wilfred Owen (Soldier Poet), Cole Porter, Ma RTaainey, Terrence rattigan, Robert rauschenberg, Nicholas Ray, Sir Micahel redgrave, Jerome Robbins, Sigfreid Sassoon, Gore Vidal, Hugh Walpole, Andy warhol, Ethel waters, John waters, T.H. White,Walt Whitman, Oscar Wilde, Thornton Wilder, Lanford wilson, Tennessee Williams and thousands more.

  • sparrow4

    “Mormonism is the only religion or faith rooted in reality or in substance, matter and energy. God’s visitation to Joseph Smith removed centuries ofI don’t think Daniel would deny matter can neither be created nor destroyed, however how that relates to Mormonism you don’t make clear at all. In fact you seem to go a rather torturous route in your effort to tie Mormonism to science and it doesn’t hold together. Just because the Smiths claimed to have held these golden plates, and then translated the worked written on the plates into the book of Moroni- what scientific or archaeological proof do you have of this? The words themselves prove nothing.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    The purpose of gay people:J. Edgar Hoover,

  • sparrow4

    drrock wrote:”I suspect you really do not understand or know the purpose of homosexuality in the human species. Why? Because there isn’t one. It’s a disorder. It’s a confusing abnormality. It’s a contradiction in nature. But because “feelings” are involved, and difficult to process and understand, the gay movement has attempted to turn those feelings into a new gender of its own without scientific evidence. Millions of people have been deceived by this ignorant and self-centered gender fantasy.The purpose of life is first reflected in biological identity…..you can’t reasonably and truly deny that the purpose of human beings is to have children – to deny such is to deny human identity.”There is nothing in this statement you wrote that indicates you value homosexuals. All comments to the contrary, when you take this jaded and disparaging an attitude, there is no point in trying to claim that you value them. You don’t= you’re playing lip service to the concept, but there is no truth to your statement that you value them.ONE of the purposes of human life is of course to continue the race. Not everyone can have children. Not everyone wants them. If the oly purpose in life is to procreate then we aren’t any different than the animals, the fish, the birds, the plants. But we are also sentient and the purpose of living is a far different one than the purpose of life. There are childless people who have contributed more to the future of the human race than any parent by virtue of ideas, art, music, medicine, science. Children are about life. Marriage is about living. Every human endeavor is about living otherwise you could conceivably think that childless people should be killed off since they have no purpose, by your lights.Everyone has value. We may not all contribute in the same way- but it is in our relationships and communities that we find purpose and value. Marriage is a social institution. Family units are the norm because they are the most efficient way to take care of young, feed groups of people and guide relationships. If you can be married without children, you understand it is the relationship that is important. Not the children, not the gender. Making marriage soe sanctified holy covenant would be fine if there weren’t a 50% divorce rate. If marriage were so sacred, why isn’t it taken more seriously?

  • schultz2

    “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” The right to vote in free and open elections? That free and open elections be banned when the results do not suit their minuscule minority and its agenda? An end to discrimination against gays in housing, employment, and education? The right to enter into relationships with same sex partners openly and freely, without being harassed by straight citizens and governments? A Constitutional ban on any religious expression which holds that homosexual behavior is sinful? That an unwilling American public be forced to accept the notion that gay marriage is a right, the infringement of which constitutes a civil rights evil on a par with slavery and Jim Crow laws?

  • sparrow4

    schultz2- I often wonder, often vehemently on these blogs, why people are so worried about gay marriage.Beyond the invasion of privacy, the bigotry, the fear is appalling. but you can’t change people or their religious beliefs- only they can do that. And many have- coming to understand that human rights and compassion are more faithful to the teachings of Christ than the mean-spirited, small-minded prejudice the fundamentalists are so intent on pursuing. Clinging to every premise laid forth over 2000 years ago is a fool’s errand, and in fact we haven’t. even the most fervent churchgoer travels by car, watches tv, goes to modern hospitals, and doesn’t expect the justice system to cut off a man’s hand for theft, or poke out his eye for looking at another’s wife. We don’t have slaves anymore, though it was accepted in biblical (and up to modern times).In short, we’ve all changed with the times.The only thing we can do is make sure that those personal beliefs do not become law in the public square. they are against the intent and spirit of the constitution, they are derogatory and malicious, they are wrong. The only premise I can’t agree with is the one about stopping religious expression from saying homosexuality is sinful. First- that would be unconstitutional and against both freedom of religion and of speech. It would be the same as churches trying to impose their beliefs on the gay marriage issue. The only thing that they can’t do is incite, and I believe there are already laws about this. So if you remember the Nazis marching in Skokie, they were allowed under the constitution. But had they tried to whip up a n anti-Semitic attack, they’d been thrown in jail.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr RockYes, your many contradictory statements about gay people are confusing. Is being gay a sin or isn’t it? Is being gay like being a murderer or a theif, or isn’t it? Are gay people God’s useless mistake or aren’t they? Do you really value gay people, or don’t you? You argue in bad faith. This bad faith argument is irrelevant to the problem at hand, being what to do about the new-found voice of gay people? You can waste your time, energy, and money on this bad faith campaingn against your fellow man, or you can do something more useful and worthwhile. The ball is in your court.The world is oveflowing with people. Billions live in squaller. Why is the purpose of life to have more and more children? Is the existence of gay people a threat to population growth?On these matters you are clueless. What else is there to say?

  • DrRock

    Elton John on Prop 8 We’re not married. Let’s get that right. We have a civil partnership. What is wrong with Proposition 8 is that they went for marriage. Marriage is going to put a lot of people off, the word marriage. I don’t want to be married. I’m very happy with a civil partnership. If gay people want to get married, or get together, they should have a civil partnership. The word “marriage,” I think, puts a lot of people off. You get the same equal rights that we do when we have a civil partnership. Heterosexual people get married. We can have civil partnerships.Elton John quoted in USA Today on 12 November 2008.What’s your reaction to Elton John’s comments?

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Clueless and irrelevant. Gay people are done being everyone’s scapegoat. Think whatever you will.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:Homosexuality is same-sex attraction. It’s not a new “race” of people and it isn’t a new gender. It’s attraction. Males are still males and females are still females. God didn’t “create” homosexuals, he created males and females. Homosexuality is a complex psychological disorder of which people have been convinced is desirable, in the sense that it is just as beneficial to the human race as heterosexuality. Its causes are rooted in many varied aspects. You have erroneously identified homosexuality as something other than attraction. Male is male. The male gender has a function in the human race. Males were made to interact with females for a specific purpose. If a male thinks he’s a female, then it’s a psychological and emotional problem – not a new biological creation. How do we know? Because male is male and female is female. Because of those realities in existence, God has in fact spoken out about ACTING on homosexual feelings. Having same –sex attraction is not a sin. Having bi-sexual feelings is not a sin. Acting on same-sex or bisexual sex attraction is a sin, according to the God who exists inside matter and energy.I value every member of the human race, but I don’t value disobedience to laws of the state or laws of God. I have love for my fellow man, but I don’t accept every creed, ideology, practice, lifestyle, or belief of the same. Whether or not I personally have more children will not change the poverty of millions. Why is the purpose of life to have children? Because that is the purpose of the coupling of a male and female. Whether one acts on that purpose is their own affair, but that doesn’t change the truth and the reality of the purpose.You say I am clueless, but I have shown that I am very “clued in” to things that exist in reality. I have accurately identified that EXISTENCE is the standard for reality, not consciousness. Within EXISTENCE, LIFE is the standard of value, not love.What else is there to say? Appeals to consciousness, instead of existence, are just “wishful thinking.”

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Your persistence in making false statements and in promoting fase doctrines undermines your credibility. You will never make youself big by tearing other people down. Waste your time, energy, money, and life on this dreck, if you want. Or do something that is more worthwhile and important with your life.

  • DrRock

    Daniel:You have not demonstrated that my statements or my doctrines are false.You have not demonstrated that I am “tearing down” someone.I consider it a very good use of time by helping others to identify existence as it is.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr. RockFor someone that believes in the Angel Moroni and the Godlen Plates, your plea for demonstration and proof does not make sense. Your requirement for consistency does not make sense, in a moral scheme where polygamy is good one day and evil the next. Your whole scientific view of existence rests on the ever-changing Revelations of the Living Prophet, which coincidentally, often happen to be politically CONVENIENT. I suspect, when it is politically necessary, the Prophet will have a Revelation about gay people and gay marriage. (Oh, never mind, gay marriage is ok now).You are a confusion of conflicting impulses and emotions with regard to gay people.Is being gay a sinful choice, or a complex psychological illness? It cannot be both, but you have argued that is both. You try one sad argument, and when that is not effective, then you try another one. All the while, the peopole whom you seek to demonize and villify are in fact, perfectly fine and good people, something that is plainly obvious to anyone with an ouce of sense. Where is your sense? Your arguements are all over the place. One thing that is for sure that comes out in all your arguments: you don’t like gay people. But why are you so worried about gay people? There will never likely ever be more than a tiny few in a place as hostile and unfriendly as Utah. What gay people are born there are driven out, and surely almost no gay people would ever move there. So? You have effectively accomplished your goal, that God could not.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    Dr RockIf you are truely and sincerely interested in knowing what “homosexuality” is and what gay people are, and how gay people feel, and if people choose to be gay, or just come out that way, then why don’t you ask gay people? Wouldn’t that be more realiable than just guessing, or merely listening to other people’s hearsay? It is the easiest thing in the world to do. If you do not know any gay people, and don’t know how to find any, then why don’t you put an ad in the “personals” section of the newspaper, and say exactly what it is you are seeking, information to help you with your religions considerations about gay people. What is so hard about that? The fact that you already have “a priori” knowledge about gay people that is all wrong and completely fouled up undermines your credibility. Honestly, you sound like Archie Bunker.

  • DrRock

    Daniel: I realize that you are a highly opinionated person. I understand your opinions.This is not an equal rights issue – it’s an emotional and psychological issue related to the sexual preferences of adults.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    I have read this 5 times, and it does not make sense. It is obviously some kind of stream-of-consciousness type of writing. It is not really an “essay” in a traditional sense.Even though I don’t agree with alot of it, there is no easy way to critique it or criticize it, because there isn’t really anything to it. Notice, not even traditional, conservative Christian people are defending these comments, even though surely some must have read it and seen the negative comments. All I can say is, I read it, but I don’t get it.

  • DanielintheLionsDen

    I did not post the previous commnet under my name. As you can see, it does not relate to anything. I think it is someone else’s post from some other thread that has crossed over here by some error. So, I guess I am done here.

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