Prop 8 Ruling a Blow to All Minorities

By Joel P. Engardiowriter, documentary filmmaker Religious supporters of Proposition 8, the voter initiative that banned same-sex marriages in California, … Continued

By Joel P. Engardio
writer, documentary filmmaker

Religious supporters of Proposition 8, the voter initiative that banned same-sex marriages in California, might feel good now that the state’s Supreme Court has ruled that the measure can stand. But will those religious groups that are celebrating Prop 8 today regret it later when they consider the precedent that’s been set?

Prop 8 has made it a lot easier in California for a simple majority of voters to strip away the rights of an unpopular minority. What happens when it’s your time to be the unpopular minority?

History is unkind and too often repeats itself. Members of the Mormon Church, who were major supporters of Prop 8, have ancestors who experienced some of the worst religious discrimination ever faced in the United States. In the mid-19th Century they were driven by mobs from Illinois to Missouri and across the Wild West to Utah. It was wrong then to persecute Mormons for what they believed, just as it would be wrong now to try to force Mormons to accept members or marriages in their church they deem unworthy. There is freedom of religion in America for good reason. But that and other freedoms have been watered down in California thanks to Prop 8. The court now has less power to fulfill the purpose for which it was created: keep the tyranny of the majority from trampling the rights of the minority. Anyone can be a minority if enough people don’t like the way you live, worship or think.

My mother is one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, an unpopular religion that was persecuted in the U.S. and abroad. They faced mob violence in 40 states when refusing to salute the flag during World War II. In Germany, they were put in the concentration camps for refusing to give the Nazi salute. Like Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses vehemently oppose same-sex marriage on moral and Biblical grounds. Gays are not allowed to be Witnesses unless they live celibate and single lives. Members who insist on being in a same-sex relationship are shunned by the congregation. But none of the million Jehovah’s Witnesses in the U.S. supported Prop 8 because the religion mandates staying out of politics and culture wars.

Jehovah’s Witnesses proselytize door-to-door advocating a religious point of view just as Mormons do. But the choice to accept or not ends at the front door for the Witnesses. They don’t amend the constitution to force everyone to live their way. State laws are not needed to legitimize their moral views. Witnesses don’t see the state as an enforcer of a moral code. That’s the Bible’s job, they say. If you want to be in God’s Kingdom, simply live the code yourself – it’s not the Witnesses’ mission to enact laws to stop gays from marrying.

When Jehovah’s Witnesses were persecuted they fought for their First Amendment rights at the U.S. Supreme Court a record 62 times, winning 50 cases. With each win, rights were expanded for everyone. The Witnesses know it’s in their best interest that the rights apply to all, even for groups they disagree with. Now in California the opposite is happening.

Some religious organizations are celebrating a restriction of rights for a minority they disagree with – making themselves the future target of an equally discriminatory people’s amendment. Because Prop 8 diminished the court’s protective role, there will be nothing they can do other than realize they should have been more careful about what they wished for.

Joel 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.

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  • Paganplace

    “It was wrong then to persecute Mormons for what they believed, just as it would be wrong now to try to force Mormons to accept members or marriages in their church they deem unworthy.”Also it was wrong for the Mormons to come into California and spend big bucks to tell people that was ever even on the table, try to divide minorities against gay people in the first place, or otherwise obfuscate the real issue. As for JW’s, they’re unpopular cause systematically coming to people’s doors (or into their homes) to glower at people and insult them just isn’t a good way to win friends and influence people. Sorry.

  • Paganplace

    I mean, (I don’t really like this, myself) but it’s not even good etiquette for *friends* to drop by unannounced, these days. Show some respect for others. *Then* talk about Liberty.

  • smatejka

    I half agree with the article and half agree with Paganplace. You forgot to mention the systematic persecution of Catholics. Read “Team of Rivals” for some enlightenment on that subject.But the JW assumption that they are free to bang on my door any time it suits is nonsense. I have been drug out of bed too many times after finally getting asleep after a mid shift to find a couple-three of them standing there to have any patience with the idea it does no harm. The cop, firefighter, nurse, aides, EMTs and a whole bunch of other people who are up all night so you can sleep safely should be able to sleep in peace themselves.That goes for the last set of Mormon “elders” who banged on my door, also. For that matter, I am capable of making up my own mind on political issues. Translation: The whole lot of you can leave me alone.But, yes, I think it is very dangerous to have a majority decide how a minority can live. Or if it can live. If the CA constitution has room for gay marriage then that should stand until the constitution is amended or no protection in any constitution, state or US, is worth anything whatsoever.

  • smatejka

    I half agree with the article and half agree with Paganplace. You forgot to mention the systematic persecution of Catholics. Read “Team of Rivals” for some enlightenment on that subject.But the JW assumption that they are free to bang on my door any time it suits is nonsense. I have been drug out of bed too many times after finally getting asleep after a mid shift to find a couple-three of them standing there to have any patience with the idea it does no harm. The cop, firefighter, nurse, aides, EMTs and a whole bunch of other people who are up all night so you can sleep safely should be able to sleep in peace themselves.That goes for the last set of Mormon “elders” who banged on my door, also. For that matter, I am capable of making up my own mind on political issues. Translation: The whole lot of you can leave me alone.But, yes, I think it is very dangerous to have a majority decide how a minority can live. Or if it can live. If the CA constitution has room for gay marriage then that should stand until the constitution is amended or no protection in any constitution, state or US, is worth anything whatsoever.

  • Quitaque1

    When activist judges invent a new right which was never previously thought to be in the Constitution, this is a form of tyranny. The analogy to the movement for civil rights by blacks is nonsense: those who wanted equal rights for blacks obtained equality by enacting constitutional amendments AND laws to make the constitutional amendments effective. Gay marriage advocates don’t need a constitutional amendment. All they have to do to get what they want is persuade 51% of the voters of California to support gay marriage. If they can’t do this and continue to try to impose their will through judicial activism, then they are advocates of tyranny masquerading as liberators.

  • Quitaque1

    When activist judges invent a new right which was never previously thought to be in the Constitution, this is a form of tyranny. The analogy to the movement for civil rights by blacks is nonsense: those who wanted equal rights for blacks obtained equality by enacting constitutional amendments AND laws to make the constitutional amendments effective. Gay marriage advocates don’t need a constitutional amendment. All they have to do to get what they want is persuade 51% of the voters of California to support gay marriage. If they can’t do this and continue to try to impose their will through judicial activism, then they are advocates of tyranny masquerading as liberators.

  • chet_brewer

    I thought this was a great article and is a good point about preventing the tyranny of the majority. I am curious why Quitaque1 thinks that judges are creating rights not enumerated in the constitution, my read is that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are fundamental and explicitly enumerated rights and if two guys want to marry that is their pursuit of happiness. How is that activist judges creating rights here? I don’t understand it but they have the right to pursue happiness just like I do.

  • Paganplace

    “When activist judges invent a new right which was never previously thought to be in the Constitution, this is a form of tyranny.”Equal treatment for all under the law is nothing *new,* nor is it ‘tyranny’ against those whose own rights under the law would be unaffected by others sharing in that equality.This one’s not about your ‘right’ to presume to ‘dictate’ others’ legal rights and decisions according to the dictates of *your* religion. Your own versions of your own religions’ political and social ambitions don’t enter into it. This one’s about Liberty, and Justice, for *all.* That’s nothing new. And if you think it’s ‘tyrannical’ of my sweetie and I wanting to have fair treatment as American citizens, well I ain’t the one spamming the airwaves and going door to door to tell you about my personal life.

  • Paganplace

    Not worried about the 51 percent, by the way the thing only passed in the *first* place cause Mormons and Catholics and likely JW’s spent *millions* going around to minority neighborhoods to *lie* about what equal marriage rights under civil law would do.

  • Paganplace

    And, I mean, yes, lies, frankly. Christians come to my door *all the time* claiming they ‘know’ the same damn things as they cover the TV and canvas the neighborhoods of the insecure… about what *they* want to claim my life and my faith and my rights as a human being and American involve. Been at this a while, yaknow?Pardon if I think I know what it involves, …and you folks got some ‘dirty’ imaginations, let me tell you.

  • Paganplace

    Cause I’ll tell you this, if you want to live as an American as a free American and swear yourself to peace, pluralism, I and many Pagans and queers would be the first to pick up a rifle and go in your place, in spite of what you’re trying to do to us.We fight and die to give you the right to do that, but *not* to claim you get to dictate as from a foreign King what rights we very same people are to be condescended to be allowed …by you, who lie to our own faces and everyone around what we’re about… as though you were above human decency, the truth, and the very fundamental rights and freedoms that we, the people… Call our nation. If we’re good enough to die in your Bush’s war, we’re good enough to have the same rights to property and security as you. Period. You don’t even have to *like* it. You’re not exactly a sunny presence in *my* life, either.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    FREEDOM WILL ring in this country. It’s that simple. California can have Proposition 8 up the Wazoo, but I’m convinced the matter of gay marriage rights will go federal, gays will be fully enfranchised as citizens, this moral embarrassment will end, and every sex-fascist made welcome to seek citizenship in a Heterosexist state.

  • Catken1

    Poor, poor Quitaque. You are so abused by the judicial system. What horrible tyranny, to take away your right to punish others for not doing what you want them to do with their own personal lives. Those bullies, keeping you from your sacred right to bully other people – how dare they?Quitaque’s Dictionary of Tyranny:Gay people wanting to make their own personal choices, as consenting adults, about their own personal lives: “tyranny” and “imposition of their will via judicial activism”You attacking other people’s families, vetoing their marriages, damaging their children’s security, etc. because they chose a consenting adult spouse of whom you disapprove – “exercising your rights”. Don’t you even GRASP the hypocrisy there?

  • cowboyjohn57

    Many of the straight folks who voted for Prop 8 should have asked themselves this question: How does this affect me? The obvious answer: it doesn’t! If these people were so intent of “preserving traditional values”, then why did they not add a “no-divorce” proposition while they were at it? To me, the greatest threat to traditional marriage isn’t GAY marriage, it’s D-I-V-O-R-C-E! Outlawing gay marriage is not doing to do anything to stem divorce rates and single-parent households.

  • spidermean2

    Joel Engardio, you are one stupid person. What you are asking is to let STUPIDITY be a law even if the majority don’t want it.The Mormons were practicing polygamy when they were persecuted. How would you feel if you are a parent of a girl and a married neighbor with kids and wives knocks on your door to court your girl, hmmm? Now do you understand why Doomsday is coming?

  • Paganplace

    “Now do you understand why Doomsday is coming? “Have to say I’m a lot less afraid of ‘Doomsday’ when someone *you* like doesn’t have the launch codes, actually, Spidey. :)

  • theinnovative1

    I was officially erased today.When I woke up on election day I had civil and constitutional rights. But, apparently, my existence pissed off enough people that they went to the polls and erased me from the CA constitution.So, be careful: shut up, keep your head down, be grateful for whatever “rights” folks aren’t after and just do your best to stay invisible. Maybe, just maybe, you can avoid being erased too.Good Luck

  • elderofmagic

    For those of you who state that: “When activist judges invent a new right which was never previously thought to be in the Constitution, this is a form of tyranny.” You are failing to take into account the 9th Amendment which reads: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”Which is to say that, there are rights which are not explicitly listed, but are implicit and although not explicitly listed, they are not to be denied. Therefore, as The Constitution leaves the interperitation of The Constitution to the judicial branch of government, It is wholly their authority to determine what these implied rights are.Furthermore, how does someone else getting married change the ‘sanctity’ of your marriage? Although I may be delving into the realm of ‘reductio ad absurdum’, does someone else dying their hair change the colour of your hair?

  • spidermean2

    Gays should be happy with this ruling. It will save Californai from total destruction. A place cannot be totally destroyed if there are still sane people around.You may want to tranfer to the East coast if you can’t bear it. I beleive those states in the East are set to be doomed.

  • Paganplace

    *laugh.* Don’t worry, Fundie-dressed-up-as-Spiderman worried about ‘God’ thinking someone’s gay… We’ll hold down the fort. :)

  • Paganplace

    I mean, yaknow, Spidey, I’m very sorry if the mundane legal and financial injustices surrounding the legal treatment of my not-very-scandalous committed partnership are somehow ‘abridging your rights’ to act like God is Victor Von Doom, but I don’t think you need to go throwing stones regarding ‘sanity.’ :)

  • Loryjones

    ROTFLMAO! Joel Engardio should be a comedian. Just a glimpse — “gays”…”Jehovah Witness”… this could be the start of a “this duck walks into a bar” joke. Oh wait, he’s from the ACLU. That explains everything.I liked this part: “Prop 8 has made it a lot easier in California for a simple majority of voters to strip away the rights of an unpopular minority. What happens when it’s your time to be the unpopular minority?”First, it seems to be “de rigeur” — even righteous — to be gay nowadays. So much for the unpopularity part.Second, those who follow God’s law are already the minority. At least, that’s how the media tells it.So tell me, Mr. Engardio: When those who practice religion must do so only under cover — because wayward people like you paved the way to persecute them — will you defend the religious, your new “minority”? Will we see a reworking of this article in a future Post edition?

  • jamshark70

    Loryjones is apparently a walking non-sequitur.”De rigeur” to be gay? What planet are you talking about? If gays are so popular… why don’t you try telling that to Lawrence King’s mom? You know… the mother of the 15-year-old who got shot to death in school because another student couldn’t stand him being openly gay?If that’s popularity, then Miss USA is an IQ contest.It boggles the mind… no part of lj’s post is grounded in reality whatsoever. But hey, freedom of speech… lj is free to voice an opinion, and I’m free to call it what it is… utter nonsense.

  • westphalia

    How are civil rights violated? Homosexuals can marry, they just have to marry someone of the opposite sex like everyone else. I don’t think most people have a problem with civil unions, or siblings/relatives making a domestic partnership for legal reasons. But as for redefining marriage, it strikes me as ludicrous and a lot like the Monty Python skit in Life of Brian:

  • aredant

    I think Lori Jones is a poopy head.

  • westphalia

    How are civil rights violated? Homosexuals can marry, they just have to marry someone of the opposite sex like everyone else. I don’t think most people have a problem with civil unions, or siblings/relatives making a domestic partnership for legal reasons. But as for redefining marriage, it strikes me as ludicrous and a lot like the Monty Python skit in Life of Brian:

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Hey, Heterosexist, Spread the Good News!!Gotta an idea for the Sex Police. Saudi Arabia. Guess what? NO TAXES. That way you don’t have to face the messy problem of GAYS paying ‘em for your fat-assed selves while not having the same rights as you.Oh, did I say rights? Well, gee, just remembered, you all nonSaudis won’t have any.No problem, though, since yuh likit when folks don’t have rights, when they pay to support fat-faced fascists, vampires who feed off other people’s suffering.

  • bill87

    The judiciary is but the creature of the Constitution, and cannot judge its creator. It cannot rise above the source of its own existence. If it could do this, it could annul the Constitution, instead of simply declaring what it means.

  • cowboyjohn57

    jamshark70, I totally enjoyed your comment! Loryjones, I can honestly tell you don’t have too many gay friends, if any! If you think “it seems to be “de rigeur” — even righteous — to be gay nowadays”, then why the devil did Prop 8 pass? (Opps, maybe it was the devil that made over 50% of the California voters pass the Prop!) To me, most religions are cults! They have absolutely no business telling people how to live their lives, specifically those who do not belong to that religion. They shrill out that they are the defenders of “traditional” marriages. But given the fact that more than 50% of straight marriages usually end up in divorces and there are quite a number of one-parent households, they sure haven’t done their jobs very well! No big wonder many people that have taken polls won’t designate a religion they belong to. I do pray to God, but I sure do not need to go to church to do it!

  • BernardEckholdt

    divide and conquer. seems that really does work. focus upon a minority today and it will be a different one tomorrow.so as ye sow, so shall ye reap. those so called Christians and other deluded fundies obviously don’t follow God, just some lunatic who wants their money.such hatred is really hard to fathom. i really wonder. maybe Californians next referendum should be on NO Divorce allowed for Straights. talking about doing to others.where is the Love Jesus preached about. i hear only fear and loathing. there is more than enough H8 to go around coming from those who talk but don’t walk the walk.fear really is the mind killer!

  • Paganplace

    (I mean, you do realize, clergy have *never* been forced to marry people they don’t see fit to for any reason. In states where I don’t need local certification to perform a marriage, I can refuse to perform a ceremony for any reason or no reason at all: There were organized *lies* claiming that clergy would be ‘forced’ to perform gay marriages, and to ‘stop’ that it was ‘necessary’ to have the state discriminate regarding civil marriage licenses. It’s just not the case. Never has been. It’s not true. Not hard to find *out* it’s not true, either. )

  • Quitaque1

    I’m delighted to see my comments struck a nerve because I think the gay rights movement has taken a completely wrong direction and I’m hoping to do my small part to get the movement back on track. Twenty five years ago, no one had every heard of a “right” to gay marriage. This is a newly invented or, if you prefer, newly discovered right. Since we live in a democracy, it is the job of gay activists to PERSUADE their fellow citizens that this is a right which deserves to be recognized and added to the list of rights we’ve already identified as worthy of our support. Proposition 8 shows that California gay activists have not yet persuaded their fellow citizens. So, gay activists have two choices: My advice: stop the negativity, stay positive and confident, respect the rights of others who disagree with you, do a better job of making your case, and you will prevail in the near future. If gay activists keep whining and attempting to bully those who disagree with them, gay activitists will LOSE. Perez Hilton, with his ugly and pointless attack on Miss California, did more to set back the gay rights movement than all the Mormons in Utah put together.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Heterosexists, Prepare for your Saudi RelocationIN New York City, this evening, partly in response to California, partly to prepare for this State Legislature finale, coming within the weeek, 1,000 people marched.Just a small beginning, I’m sure. This is New York City, not Baker Christian College, No Place, US. I do love it when the silenced start shouting. Music to my eeeyahs.SO, HETEROSEXISTS, BEST RESERVE NOW WITH SAUDI AIR. THEY’VE ALREADY HEARD THE GOOD NEWS!!!YOU GETTO KISS THE FEET OF THE SEX POLICE.JUST ONE THING: THOUGH WE LISTEN TO YOUR WHINING, THEY WON’T. TRY ANOTHER KIND OF INCOHERENCE.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Btw.,Just who was it who died and left the country to Right Wing Christian Sex Police? Errr…Was there an announcement or something?Cuz, I think said Wingnuts mighta gotten mixed up. Err MORE mixed up, I mean.

  • spidermean2

    California should rejoice coz the ruling would stop other gays around the country from flocking to this state. A total destruction of the state was averted. Some part may be doomed but NOT all. I worry for the North-Eastern coast. I think there is no stopping that they will be annihilated. Of all American states, they are actually the most vulnerable to nuke attacks. It’s not a coincidence that they are embracing gay-marriage. Gay relationship is a disease just like polygamy is. It is harmful to society in the long term.

  • ElaineM

    I now live in Canada where they have had gay marriage for several years. They’re quite civil up here. I think the thinking is that two consenting adults of the same sex can get married because well… why not? If it makes them happy and it is NOT hurting anybody (and why this argument gets any traction is beyond me), then really, why not? For those that believe that gay marriage means the beginning of destruction of heterosexual marriage or whatever the major fear is, please articulate in an intelligent and logical way, what possible ill effects allowing a gay couple to marry will have on the rest of the population. Otherwise, you look only like bigots who do not have the capacity to open your hearts. If you are happy in a loving and committed relationship that is recognized, then why keep that from other couples? Is it the marriage you are afraid of or are you simply not willing to accept the fact that some people are gay?

  • spidermean2

    We just can’t allow stupidity to flourish. I don’t think it is right that the constitution be changed just because I want to marry more than 3 wives.Gays should realize that what they have is a form of disease just like polygamy is. You can live with the disease but please don’t make it appear as sanctioned by the state. Live in your stupidity but don’t make it appear that your stupidity is approved by the rest of society.The majority has spoken. They DON’T APPROVE OF IT.

  • tmcproductions2004

    The “religious” have tried to strip rights from every minority since the beginning of this country. The good news is they ALWAYS lose. Americans like equal rights.

  • AmericaForever

    Lets see….don’t like the ruling, or the vote of the majority, so let’s start attacking religious people in general try to make them look stupid. Let’s take religion out of it for just a second….you see, nature discriminated against gays first. The behavior is maladaptive. NO, they cannot have a marriage license no matter how much they don’t like being discriminated against.Stop picking at the Mormons. One donation from Utah (no on 8) was larger than all the Utah donations put together. Belly aching doesn’t look good on anyone.

  • Paganplace

    “Lets see….don’t like the ruling, or the vote of the majority, so let’s start attacking religious people in general try to make them look stupid.”Yaknow, I like to think I have a sharp tongue, but I just can’t take credit for people of certain religions looking stupid. Have you *read* this?

  • spidermean2

    tmcproductions2004 wrote “The good news is they ALWAYS lose. Americans like equal rights. “Wrong. The Bible disapprove of slavey. It was banishedThe Bible disapprove of racial discrimination. IT was banished.The Bible disapprove of polygamy. It was banished.The Bible disapprove of gay marriage. It will be banished or else they will be doomed. The Bible CANNOT LOSE. California should be glad that it is following the way of the Bible or they will be annihilated. I can’t say the same for the North-Eastern part of America. They are set to be DOOMED.The Bible CANNOT LOSE.

  • Paganplace

    I mean furthermore, ‘AmericaForever’ … Can you imagine your entire *life* and everything you’ve managed to *build* with the one you love hanging by the whimsy of people like this, and those they can deceive about the facts? Is that America?

  • Paganplace

    Spidey:”The Bible disapprove of slavey. It was banished”Wrong, actually. The Bible tells slaves to obey their masters. Banished anyway, in spite of those ‘conservative Christians’ who claimed it was the ‘natural order’”The Bible disapprove of racial discrimination. IT was banished.”Wrong again. The Bible is and always was used to say people of darker races were ‘cursed by God’ as a result of the spurious ‘sons of Ham’ nonsense. Banished, anyway. “The Bible disapprove of polygamy. It was banished.”Wrong again: many of the patriarchs of the Bible had many wives, Solomon being a prominent example, with 400 of them, not to mention ‘concubines.’ “The Bible disapprove of gay marriage.”Wrong again: it’s actually never mentioned, even if there’s homophobia in there. ” It will be banished or else they will be doomed. The Bible CANNOT LOSE. “See how I’m not seeing a reason to take you seriously, folks bangin’ on the door of *my* home?

  • Paganplace

    Also, btw, Spidey, the Bible *never mentions lesbians at all.* You guys ‘interpreted’ that all on your own when you claim Americans must obey your religion under penalty of law.

  • Usama1

    Homosexuality is not equal to race or ethnicity. Homosexuality is public admittance of a private sexual practice, while race and ethnicity are benign traits. The gay movement wants gays to be percieved as a minority, but the reality is gays are led by and composed mostly of white males, middle to professional class. They regentrify, infusing millions into neighbhorhoods, command tourism events and catering worldwide, have TV stations, radio stations, music genres, movies all catering to their sexual preferences. They are part of the most powerful section of modern society, if not the world. Their only distinction is they prefer men rather than women (and the lesbian subsection is close in step with them). And they want their sexual preferences to be accepted as equal to everyone else, except homosexuality states sex activity, and most people consider sex a private matter. They dont normally discuss it in public, let alone make public displays of it. Except their demand for their sexual preferences to be accepted are against the general moral standards for people, and occur at a time when sexual morality is declining if not collapsing. As it happens, gay marriage is a wedge issue of the left that gains daily media attention much like rightwing wedge issues did. There is no moral value in supporting practices deemed immoral. But the white male leadership of the left choose to allow this wedge issue to dominate over the real problems facing the vast majority.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    As it happens, there ia away for heterosexual people who wish to assert their objection to gays marrying.Such persons can cease to marry and, instead, have civil unions or the equivalent. Members of organizations in opposition to gay marriage are urged to develop a protest platform arguing against heterosexual marriage instead.Alternatively, such persons may wish to refrain from sexuality altogether, and, in this way, cease to reproduce themselves. This would be a great contribution to society, indeed, to the advancement of civilization.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    BIOLOGY 101: SEX BETWEEN A MAN AND A WOMAN IS NOT “MARRIAGE SEX” ANYMORE THAN GAY SEX ISHETEROSEXUAL SEX IS NOT MARRIAGE SEX. MEN REACH ORGASM THROUGH THE FRICTION OF THEIR ERECT PENISES AGAINST VAGINAL WALLS. WOMEN REACH ORGASM MOST FREQUENTLY WITH CLITORAL INVOLVEMENT, WHICH ALSO INVOLVES FRICTION.HENCE, HETEROSEXUAL “SEX” IS MUTUAL MASTURBATIONGEE, WELL, GOLLYY, WILBUR, NEVER THOUGHT OF IT THAT WAY BEFORE. Hmmmm…

  • Paganplace

    And I’ll tell you one thing, I was getting stomped and bashed by ‘virtuous Christians’ long before anyone *involved* had much of an idea what sex really *was,* never mind *had* any. The bigotry is real. That alone should be enough for a civilized society to say ‘We will not support this bigotry and inequality.’Always seemed you could ‘find the queer’ without me advertising or in fact *doing* any of your ‘sins,’ well enough. Could be there’s something to this.

  • spidermean2

    Pagan wrote “The Bible tells slaves to obey their masters. “Where exactly is that in the bible? I think the context was based on employer-employee relationship. Obey your employer or look for another job. It makes sense, does it?Pagan wrote “The Bible is and always was used to say people of darker races were ‘cursed by God’ as a result of the spurious ‘sons of Ham’ nonsense. “Wrong again. That is a wrong interpretation of the Bible. It’s the attitude of Ham that makes him a cursed person. When people interpret the bible falsely, it does not make the Bible false.Polygamy was NOT allowed by God. It’s the people themselves who want to have many wives. Apostle Paul stated very clearly what the will of Christ was concerning the number of wives to have. One only.Pagan wrote “it’s actually never mentioned, even if there’s homophobia in there. “WRONG AGAIN. It is mentioned in Romans.The Bible is always the Ultimate Judge. It has NEVER lose.

  • spidermean2

    People in California should be glad that the destruction of California would be minimal as a result of this court ruling. I can’t say the same for North-Eastern states where they allow gay marriage and they happen to be the MOST vulnerable states for nuke attacks by virtue of their location.The Bible is SO true. Mess with it and you’re doomed.

  • Paganplace

    Now who’s ‘interpreting,’ Spidey. *Your* Bible. You read it. If it’s that important to you, learn the languages it was written, in, even, before you come trying to tell me you know better than other American citizens what their lives are all about. Answer will be the same, but you should at least do that. And, no, gay marriage is *not* mentioned. Even if it was, that wouldn’t make you right.Lesbians are also not mentioned. And if you think Paul overrode the Old Testament, then you also lose your calling me an ‘abomination’ privileges. Frankly, little maniacs like you who apparently get off on thinking God’s gonna blow up the world unless you ‘rape someone straight’ are *another* good reason to not let you have your way with our rights and freedoms in America.

  • Paganplace

    “The Bible is SO true. Mess with it and you’re doomed.”What, as opposed to being ‘minimally-destroyed?’

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    I hate to intrude upon this discussion of the Bible and sexualtiy, but will do so, overcoming my resistance forethwith.The Tanakh does not condemn homosexuality since the construct of homosexual did not enter the West until the nineteenth century.At all events, in Biblical times, during wars, captured soldiers were often raped by their captives as a way of humiliating them. It was this that the Bible prohibited.

  • Paganplace

    Btw, as far as your nuke fetish is concerned, I lived in a primary target back when the Soviet ICBMs were getting scheduled maintenance. They’d have been shot over the poles, that’s why there was a DEW line. Wouldn’t have mattered where I was or how hard or ‘righteously’ I was queer-bashed.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Rape of soldiers by their captors was a phenomenon throughout the Near East. One finds descriptions of it in Egyptian mythology of the period.

  • Paganplace

    (And, no, the Soviets aren’t going to hit us any time soon, may as well just hand half the continent to China, if they did that. ) Get real. Or at least get over who I snuggle with. You don’t know from nukes hanging over your head. Tends to make a body less inclined to believe maniacs.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    For an example of the homosexual rape, rape of men by men in order to humiliate them, see the Egyptian myth:”The Contending of Horus and Seth”Use google to locate the full text of the myth on the web.Again, it is this which the Hebrew Scriptures condemns.

  • Paganplace

    Male on male, or male on anyone, rape, Farnazz, is not about homosexuality: in fact, homophobes commonly rape people *for* being perceived as gay or for whatever reason. Not the same as homosexuality. It’s just violent sexual dominance behavior, which is really what all this nonsense is about. Notice how Spidey here is invoking imaginary *nuclear* threats to try and get us to obey his megalomaniacal, frustrated sexual wishes.

  • spidermean2

    “Likewise, their men have given up natural sexual relations with women and burn with lust for each other. Men commit indecent acts with men, so they experience among themselves the PUNISHMENT they deserve for their perversion. ” (Romans 1:27)The nukes are coming whether you like it or not. In any war, those who are defeated always go for broke when they see that they are on the verge of losing. Kamikaze (japanese suicide) attacks started when they began to realize they won’t win the war. “Let’s die together” or “die with us” will be the slogan of the day as the war near its end. With future wars and nukes abound, it’s a DOOMSDAY scenario.Nukes will fly. No doubt about that. And guess what? It will hit its nearest and most vulnerable target : The North_Eastern states of America where gay-mariage is allowed.This is not rocket science. Just plane simple science.

  • Paganplace

    It’s actually a big part of the *fear* in homophobia, Farnazz.. Also why even when talking to lesbians, so many monotheists can only fixate on male on male sex… To heterosexual males, there’s no ‘love’ in gay relationships, …to them, and this perception is encourages as ‘universal’ …it *can’t* be about love or committed relationships or the very practical legal matters involved in civil marriage… To them it has to be about ‘sex’ and feeling *threatened* by sex. They even commonly *use* really crude depictions of what they think gay sex is about… (in fact they say very crude things, again, to queer *gals*… It’s the verbal equivalent of throwing poop.

  • Paganplace

    “This is not rocket science. Just plane simple science.”Actually, it *is* rocket science, literally, why your assertion the East Coast would be more vulnerable than elsewhere to nuclear attack than anywhere else …is wrong. Whether you think you’re a prophet or engineer or not.

  • Usama1

    Farnaz, you offer vulgarity and insults to us “breeders”- typical adolescent rebuke. As I said, most people are worried about their jobs, their property value, wars overseas. Gays want to make themselves the center of attention despite the absence of value in defending their aberrant behavior. Im not calling for violence or illtreatment. Its quite notable that there are many people who call for killing me and people like me and thats deemed acceptable. Im only voicing moral opposition to the gay movement. Im also identifying people for who they are in reality.Most people shy away from discussing these facts with people because of the vitroilic rhetoric and venom thrown at them. Im getting to the truth. I have never called for violence against gays and this is supposedly an intellectual forum to discuss topics. The gay movement is not above intellectual discussion.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    “Male on male, or male on anyone, rape, Farnazz, is not about homosexuality: in fact, homophobes commonly rape people *for* being perceived as gay or for whatever reason.”Yes, of course. I’m aware of this. By “homosexual” I mean male on male. This is the term used in scholarly criticism of the subject, but, admittedly, it is incorrect, arguably offensive. I will try to phrase it differently.The point is that the construct “gay” did not exist. However, the love of men for men, women for women most certainly did. We can think of David and Jonathan, Ruth and Naomi, et al.However, many anti-gay Christians cite the NT for justification.Reading some of these comments truly frightens me. Religion, for some people, is clearly idolatrous, in the Biblical sense. They are making a mockery of the text they cite.

  • Paganplace

    See Spidey, the only people willing and able to preferentially-nuke the Northeast and San Fransisco over someone being gay would be… If Fundie maniacs at Cheyenne Mountain crack the system, commit horrific treason, and *make it happen themselves.* Gods avert.

  • CalSailor

    Pagan:While I agree that the history of the military salute is one of showing that one is unarmed, it has evolved into something very different: A statement of authority. Saluting is very formal; it acknowledges who is senior, and the junior, by having to salute first (and hold it until it is recognized by the senior), acknowledges that the one saluted has authority over the one doing the saluting. It is the acceptance of authority reflected in modern day understanding of the salute which is what the JWs object to. They recognize no authority that requires them to salute, in any form.Pr Chriswho spent 20 years practicing the salute…The young Marine must have slept through that training session (the one that taught how Navy ranks are displayed), because he passed us, going in the other direction, without saluting. IMMEDIATELY, the SgtMaj started yelling about not saluting officers. The young Marine was at rigid attention, saluting repeatedly, and saying yessir, yessir. I’m standing there, the cause of this altercation, and all I can think of is that this kid will HATE Chaplains for his entire service period, I’m just wishing I was somewhere else… After the SgtMaj finished, we turned and began walking on toward the galley again…and the young Marine loudly asks: Sir, how do I know what a Navy Officer LOOKS LIKE, sir! With that, the SgtMaj turns, and heads back toward the Private. This time, I just kept going.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    USAMA1:”Farnaz, you offer vulgarity and insults to us “breeders”- typical adolescent rebuke.”Not at all. I am merely instructing CCNL in the rudiments of hetersexual sex. Not only do heterosexists offer vulgarity and insults, they do violence, violence to the notions of citizenship and human rights. It is terribly distressing for me to see what in some ways is the most progressive society on the planet lagging behind in this, stomping on the civil and human rights of Americans, depriving them of full citizenship, etc.Again, if you or any other heterosexual wishes to dissociate themselves form homosexuals on the matter of union, you may either refrain from it, establish another way of union other than marriage, etc. In the meantime, gays want to marry. Should always have been permitted to do so.There is no discussion here. Every American is entitled to the rights of full citizenship.

  • Paganplace

    As for the saluting thing, Cal, if they won’t recognize our laws and rights, it’s a Hel of a thing for them to *use* the rights and laws others fight and die for to take the same rights they want to use for their ‘other authority’ …to abridge the rights of loyal American citizens.

  • Paganplace

    Spidey, I assure you that threat of nuclear weapons will neither scare me straight nor Christian. As a matter of fact, it’s been tried under much more plausible scenarioes.

  • spidermean2

    You should not be scared of nukes. But the fact that it’s coming and foretold by the Bible also means that Hell is real. That is what you should be afraid of.If you guys truly love America, don’t mess with the Bible or else you put the lives of your neighbors in danger too. Your care towards gay is misplaced. California should rejoice for actually averting Doomsday in full throttle.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    I confess I don’t understand this obsession that some heterosexuals have with gays. I am profoundly grateful to be married, have a wonderful daughter, and could not care less what kind of sex anyone else has so long as it is consensual.Frankly, I think it stems from a reactionary impulse, fear of chaos, etc., understandable in a chaotic world. However, “homophobia” is simply another false target, attractive in its concreteness. The true dangers facing us are more abstract, much more dangerous. They are the dangers, for instance, that have placed us in this insane war, the dangers that are killing us.Facing these dangers is far more psychologically threatening than gay bashing, but gay bashing won’t save us. The dangers, the real threats, will persist.

  • Paganplace

    See, Spidey, it’s *your* world that has no love or hope or future. I’ve heard and had done to me to one extent or another all of the things your world of fear and self-righteousness and hate could dish out, got a lovely case of PTSD and a number of scars, but you *can’t* terrorize me to make yourself feel whatever it is you think your book is supposed to make you feel. And no matter what you or CCNL or any of these people say to justify it all. It doesn’t make it Justice. I’m not scared of any God in that regard, either.

  • spidermean2

    The next war is with Iran and then with ___ and then with ___. The Bible is never wrong. I may be wrong with the sequence which country comes first but it’s coming.The Bible despises gay-marriage. If you want to defy the Bible. It’s your call but be reminded with what I said when prophecies start unfolding.Repent or perish.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    The Hebrew Bible is at endless pains to make two things comprehensible: JUSTICE and IDOLATRY.Everything goes to understanding that these two cannot co-exist. IMHO, leave the Hebrew Bible to the Hebrew.If Christians must promote this injustice, use the NT, which is what most Right Wingers call upon anyway.Don’t get it what with Christianity being the religion of love and all, but, hey, I leave all that to the Christians.In the meantime, the Hebrew Bible has nothing to say on gayness as we understand it, much to say on JUSTICE and idolatry.

  • Paganplace

    Spidey, your kind have been trying to blame queers and whoever else you please for impending Apocalypses and your own screwups for *centuries.* The Bible mentions neither gay marriage, queer women, nor nukes, nor my hometown, anywhere. Cause they didn’t know about them. And are wrong. I know you have the nuke-fetish, but neither you nor I are that big. We’re being Americans right now. Liberty and Justice for all, and may it please all good Gods. Let’s do that properly. It’s sad that your world is *always ending,* but that doesn’t give you *any* right to oppress or terrorize others. To endorse and commit this endless litany of harms and injustices both egregious and petty. Ain’t good for the soul, whether or not your fantasy of people getting bombed to death ever comes to pass. If it does come about, people pretending to be straight would *not* affect things at all. You’ll be needing that soul sooner or later, though, I figure. Hurting me with the government won’t help what ails ya.

  • spidermean2

    Apostle Paul and the rest of the Apostles were Hebrews. Christ was a Hebrew who actually was the Author of the WHOLE Bible.”Before Abraham was Iam”The Jews would perish and the Israel State would perish because the Jews don’t actually understand the Bible. Jews in America would also perish for they flock in the North-Eastern part of America particularly New York.Jews suporting gay-marriage actually endanger America and that is sad. While Christians protect the Jews, they in turn endangers the Christians for their ignorance of the Bible. A sad reality but a fact.

  • spidermean2

    To avoid destruction, do not legalize stupidity. It can’t be said much simpler than that.You can make a little experiment how scientific that is. Just consider AIDS who who gets infected the most?

  • nunivek

    I find the article to be drawing a somewhat strange line. There is this contention that the Jehovah’s Witnesses stay out of politics but than just a few paragraphs later they are commended for taking up their rights through numerous court battles.

  • hmaulden

    Great column; terrible discussion. Joel hit the nail on the head. Good metaphors with Mormons and JW’s. (Disclosure — my mom was a JW, my wife is a Mormon!)JWs are about the business of the NT — gaining converts — without legislating their principles on others. JWs believe this worldly system (politics) is not redeemable (in fact it is corrupting to people of true faith), at least until Christ returns.Mormons are basically about Theocracy. They believe they are a uniquely Chosen, Special people rooted in the US fabric and have a special role to play in US destiny.(Afterall, Smith taught that the Garden of Eden was actually located in Missouri. Yikes.) Smith was running for US President when he was killed. Mormons want to remake this country in their image — part of Joseph Smiths revelations. Read his White Horse prophecy where a Mormon leader will one day rescue/save the US from a terrible calamity. Mormons killed ERA in the 70s. They basically run the national Boy Scouts. They demand tithing. Mormon Church is the richest per capita in the US. Yet Mormon leaders do not reveal their finances — EVEN TO THEIR MEMBERS.Here’s the ultimate audacious irony that Joel missed. Mormons still believe in Polygamy – that multiple wives and one husband is how faithful Mormons will live in “heaven” or on other planets, as gods of their own worlds. (And by the way, Mormons believe in more than one Biblical god. They are polytheists. They believe there are hundreds/thousands of ex-Mormons who have become EQUAL to the biblical god.) Polygamy is not dead and will never be unwoven from Mormon practice. (D&C 132) Polygamy is simply temporarily suspended until it is restored one day.Irony Alert: Mormons believe in Polygamy and yet campaign against Gay Marriage rights? How arrogant-ignorant is THAT? Bible-believers? Polytheism? How Christian is THAT?Mormons are Saints. The rest of us are Gentiles. Simple as that. They want to run this country and are conviced one day they will do exaclty that. And the rest of us will love them for that.Both JW and Mormons are, pardon, cults. The difference is JWs want converts, not political power; JWs know politcal power corrupts– in that sense, they are at least faithful to Jesus’ teachings. But, Mormons leaders want both converts and political power. Acquiring Power is Mormons’ way to validate old prophesies and to counter their low self-esteem. But that’s a discussion for another day.Great job, Joel.

  • coloradodog

    CCNL:My religion tells me that your repeated cut-and-paste, ad nauseam, about gays is mind masturbation caused by one or more complex mental defects including the denial of an old man about his own sexuality.

  • ravitchn

    The Supreme Court of California has not stripped away anyone’s rights. They have affirmed the right of the majority to keep the thousands year old meaning of marriage. It is the gays who are seeking to undermine established law.

  • Garak

    Marriage is a sacred union between 1 man and 700 wives–with 300 concubines thrown in for good measure.1 Kings 15

  • sux123

    It’s REAL simple. Make EVERY “marriage” by the state – which is just a contract between 2 adults and the state – a civil union- open to all consenting adults. If you want to get “married” go to your favorite church and that church can choose not to marry you if it goes against their religion. What’s the big deal ??

  • Hillman1

    “The Supreme Court of California has not stripped away anyone’s rights. They have affirmed the right of the majority to keep the thousands year old meaning of marriage. “Actually, no. A thousand years ago marriage was mostly a business arrangement. It included forced marriage of underage girls, polygamy, marital rape, the woman having absolutely no say, interracial and interfaith marriage being totally illegal, etc.It’s only very recently that this has changed.If you really want Biblical-style marriage (which is what you really mean here), then you need to take it all – the forced marriage of young girls, the marital rape, the polygamy, etc.No? So it’s only the gays that you have a problem, with, yes? At least be honest and say that. Claiming you are for the ‘thousands year old meaning of marriage’ is simply either stupid or unbelievable.

  • edbyronadams

    Since California has a domestic partnership law that grants all the rights and responsibilities of marriage to same sex couples, this entire fight is about access to a word.Californians do not want to injure same sex couples. On the other hand, they do not see that changing the definition of a word that pertains to a fundamental building block of society as necessary or desirable.This entire fight is about controlling the language.

  • Hillman1

    “Since California has a domestic partnership law that grants all the rights and responsibilities of marriage to same sex couples, this entire fight is about access to a word.”Really? Then how about asking interracial couples to settle for domestic partnership? Or interfaith couples?Or you?And domestic partnerships are not the same. They aren’t recognized when you travel overseas, they don’t come with federal marriage benefits, they don’t necessarily protect you in questions like testifying against your spouse, etc.

  • elife1975

    Even as a child I was confused as to why one group felt they deserved to have rights while they believed others shouldn’t. This argument is so basic that even a child can understand which choice is right and which is wrong. You cannot call yourself a free and patriotic American while denying others the same freedoms you enjoy. It’s fundamentally wrong.

  • danielwerst

    wow…

  • spidermean2

    The message of the ruling is this : Gays who want a gay utopian society should leave California and fly to the East Coast. There, you can live your dreams. One drawback though is that the place is vulnerable to nuke attacks. Stupidity and destruction always go hand in hand.

  • Hillman1

    “Gays who want a gay utopian society should leave California and fly to the East Coast. There, you can live your dreams. One drawback though is that the place is vulnerable to nuke attacks.”Oh, Spidey. Why, then, given that you seem to think that treating gays decently means that there will be some sort of divine retribution….. why is it that on 9/11 the Pentagon was hit? The Pentagon is in a very anti-gay state (Virginia), and their policies are anti-gay.Yet the plane bound for DC (very gay-friendly) crashed instead in Pennsylvania.What’s your explanation for that?

  • arosscpa

    I have a headache and I’m grouchy today, so I don’t have a lot of patience. Someone could at least try to say something new or amusing.Spidey: We’re tired of correcting your stupid misinterpretations. Go to bible college, any bible college! Anything would be an improvement. In the mean time, read Paul’s letter to Philemon, a slave owner about the treatment of his slave. You may also want to consider that you seem to be following in path of the Idiot in N. Korea by threatening the rest of us with nuclear holocaust. Think about that.CCNL: Grow up, or in the alternative, stop re-posting old material; no one reads it anyway.To all: I think the political and ethical question that the California SCt poses to us is this: Can we as a large postmodern culture and democracy agree that no one is going to get all they desire on the broader issue of homosexuality. The consolidation of California jurisprudence appears to be that no abridgment of individual rights in employment, housing, credit, etc. is allowed. Marriage is a presocial and fundamental prerequisite to civil society, and therefore, we should follow the dictates of the majority who presently constitute one of the requirements for society. At the same time, we will provide the benefits of that presocial institution while not according it the same cultural prestige and dignity.Given that this contains something for everyone to like, and to hate, is this a workable democratic compromise? how say ye?

  • billy8

    “My mother is one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, an unpopular religion that was persecuted in the U.S. and abroad.”Tell her to stop leaving the Watchtower on my doorstep and I’ll leave her alone.

  • spidermean2

    arosscpa wrote “read Paul’s letter to Philemon, a slave owner about the treatment of his slave. “Philemon may have a slave but it was not Christianity which taught him to have one.

  • Paganplace

    Edbry: “Since California has a domestic partnership law that grants all the rights and responsibilities of marriage to same sex couples, this entire fight is about access to a word.”Not so. Domestic partnerships and civil unions are a good thing, but they aren’t equal rights, and they aren’t as secure, …also, it’s a patchwork out there what rights are portable across state lines and what companies recognize such civil unions. In fact, the anti-gay side of this does *not* believe in civil unions: many of the laws people have tried to pass regarding the ‘definition of marriage’ have in fact included language to actually *ban* domestic partnerships for gay couples, and even to render void any ‘similar to marriage’ legal contracts cobbled together by those who could hire the lawyers. The courts, in general, *must* rule that separate-but-’equal’ is never equal: there’s ample precedent for that, and this won’t pass muster in the Federal courts. A lot of people will be treated unfairly in the meantime, though. I’m sure you’re very happy. Of course anti-gay people were calling the same judges a bunch of ‘activist hacks’ when they ruled that way, but now they’re great guys to you cause they had to rule that California state law apparently allows discrimination to be put into the Constitution by a simple majority who turn up to the polls. They didn’t, however, rule about it being about a ‘word’ …they at least let stand the marriages of the 36,000 people already married in California. “Californians do not want to injure same sex couples. On the other hand, they do not see that changing the definition of a word that pertains to a fundamental building block of society as necessary or desirable.”Actually, they voted for Prop 8 cause churches spent millions to *lie* about gay marriage forcing their churches to marry gay people and all the usual nonsense. They got racially divisive, claiming equality for all in this matter would somehow diminish the equality of black people and Hispanics, and on and on. It’s one of those cases where, if people weren’t deliberately disinformed, the measure would never have passed. “This entire fight is about controlling the language.”Maybe for *you* it is, Edbry. For queer people, it’s about our futures and security and dignity. Our lives.

  • Paganplace

    And on this, you prove our point:”There is no fundamental difference between interracial couples or interfaith couples and any other heterosexual couple. Unlike same sex unions, progeny can arise.”Fertility is not a prerequisite for heterosexual marriage, so you’re imposing a double-standard, here, as well as, apparently, your own religious belief. Gay couples can have children in the same ways straight ones with an infertile partner can.

  • edbyronadams

    “Fertility is not a prerequisite for heterosexual marriage, so you’re imposing a double-standard, here, as well as, apparently, your own religious belief.”Indeed fertility is a requirement but the law is a blunt instrument and marriage historically has been about children and inheritance. Infertile couples got on the train because their was no way to determine such a difference.As to my religious preference, it isn’t germane. I happen to think rights arise when they take hold in the population. My beef is with end runs around the inconvenient will of the people problem.

  • Paganplace

    Well, you’re simply incorrect, Ebryon: fertility is not a condition of heterosexual marriage under the laws: it’s an injustice to treat gay couples differently on the very basis of your own double standard. That’s simply unacceptable in American Constitutional law, even if you repeat it a lot.

  • Paganplace

    It also undercuts the idea that gay people ‘aren’t an identifiable minority’ if you’re trying to claim it’s only because straight people *look* fertile that infertile ones are allowed to marry.Congratulations, you just identified a minority.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    SolutionBloggers who believe that religion needs out of the marriage business are on the right track.Marriage in the US is a financial contract that incurs other civic rights and obligations.Solution for Relgionists concerned about the word “marriage.” Abolish marriage as a religious institution. Legislate that all contractually binding unions, heterosexual and gay, be officiated by the state and NO ONE ELSE.Heterosexual religionists, believers belonging to inclusivist religious institutions, et al, can have separate, additional ceremonies, calling them “marriage, or anything else that suits them.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Elaboration on Previous PostWith the proposed solution, state-sanctioned unions would be called “union” or the like.Religious ceremonies performed subsequently might then be called “marriages.”

  • Paganplace

    Well, Farnazz, it seems like it’s a lot of trouble certain people of certain religions are willing to put us all through cause they can’t seem to wrap their heads around sharing a ‘word.’

  • Paganplace

    I mean, of course, as mentioned, not that they’re *really* motivated by ‘defending a definition’ or a word, … if they were, they wouldn’t keep using that notion to manipulate people into voting for bills that actually abridge the rights to civil unions or even privately-drawn up contracts. It’s about more than a word, but, frankly, they could maybe just spend their millions telling their own followers there’s a difference between religious and civil marriage, even if they commonly happen at the same *time.* The license comes from the state, the oaths are witnessed in any number of places. Registered clergy are extended this as a courtesy, basically doubling as a JP, you could say.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    “It’s about more than a word, but, frankly, they could maybe just spend their millions….” Since they say they are believers in the “religion of love” (Really! They do say this!), maybe, they could spend their millions on feeding the poor?Jus wondering…

  • edbyronadams

    A thousand pardons. I really should proof read. I meant to say that fertility is not a requirement for marriage. However, the institution is based on fertility and the rights of inheritance.My point is that same sex marriage is not, for the most part, or can it be about fertility. That sets the discrimination on a different plane than the old proscription against mixed race marriages.

  • Alex511

    fr ravitchin:>…The Supreme Court of California has not stripped away anyone’s rights….It most certainly has. Try telling that to a GLBT couple who want nothing more than to be married to each other, and no, domestic partnerships are NOT the same as legal marriages. Have a 1L explain it to you.

  • kaylancor

    Having homosexual tendencies isn’t a civil right issue. It has nothing to do with minorities regarding race or even gender (male or female). Homosexuality or sexual orientation preference is a moral issue and that is why the religious groups are happy this week. Even science proves that there is no “gay gene”. If you don’t believe in religion, then those who honor evolution and the natural law should have no problem with keeping traditional marriage as primary in this country. Even in basic psychology we learn the importance of the male and female marriage in relation to the future of the species and the happiness factor (statistically) of those in heterosexual marriage.

  • Farnaz1Mansouri1

    Solution to the problem of preserving “marriage”Bloggers who believe that religion needs out of the marriage business are on the right track.Marriage in the US is a financial contract that incurs other civic rights and obligations.Solution for Relgionists concerned about the word “marriage.” Abolish marriage as a religious institution. Legislate that all contractually binding unions, heterosexual and gay, be officiated by the state and NO ONE ELSE.Heterosexual religionists, believers belonging to inclusivist religious institutions, et al, can have separate, additional ceremonies, calling them “marriage, or anything else that suits them.

  • spidermean2

    Just a reminder. People who always go against the Bible are destroyed. If you guys want to test it again, all I can say is good luck.I can only scratch my head as these people fight for their way towards the cliff.

  • Athena4

    Fertility is NOT a requirement for marriage. At least not in this day and age. Or else my mother-in-law, who is well past her child-bearing years, would never have remarried after my father-in-law died. Many, many married couples are childless, rather by choice or by circumstance. Does that legally invalidate their marriages? NO!And you’re also forgetting that gays and lesbians CAN have children, just as single women and infertile couples can. They can adopt, or use surrogates/donors. It’s not about what someone’s religion says, or what someone’s view of homosexuality is. The fact is that homosexuals are tax-paying, voting, citizens of the United States, and are therefore entitled to equal protection under the law. That means that they have the right to marry the person of their choice, regardless of gender. In this country, we generally do not have arranged or forced marriages. Homosexuality is no longer a criminal offense. Are we prepared to shove gays and lesbians back into the closet and jail cells, for just being who they are?

  • Paganplace

    “If love him, can I marry my dog?” hitman2Well, you can *own* your dog, which gives you more rights as regards him than some anti-gay statutes allow living human beings, actually. You can even leave him property in your will, which gay couples can’t do in Virginia.

  • Paganplace

    Btw, I’m not sure those laws in Virginia and Ohio, I think, actually stand or have been contested yet, but just for fun, have a look at Texas’ bestiality laws, gay couples can’t adopt their partner’s child, but in the same law they *made* it legal to boink animals as long as you own them.So much for ‘virtue’ and ‘slippery slopes.’

  • Paganplace

    Further addedum: Well, as long as you don’t use any *sex toys* in the process, those are still illegal to sell. Ah, morality. I can feel the virtue now… Stop comparing my partner to a barnyard animal.

  • CCNL

    Thou shalt Not Commit Adultery and Thou Shall Not Covet Thy Neighbors Wife/Husband/Partner with the corollary of Thou Shalt Not Fornicate pertain not only to heterosexual couples but also homosexual couples?? This probably is no concern to non-Christians or non-Jews but it should be a major concern to those religious types that believe in the teachings of the OT, NT, the Commandments and all of its corollaries. So we have a Christian God who supposedly created all of us to include homosexuals. Said God is therefore responsible for the defective gene/mind-set that causes homosexuality? One might conclude from this that the Christian God would therefore approve same-sex marriages since that is the only sin-free state where any type of couple-sex can be performed.

  • Paganplace

    I mean, from what you say yourself, Concerned Christian, it’s clear your idea of Christianity is you want all of the excuses to hurt and control people, but none of those inconvenient obligations of faith and compassion and having even a glimmering idea that the world’s bigger than the contents of your *head,* and that that’s *OK.*Have a little faith. You live in terror of a God that is or isn’t Republican, ‘research’ girl-on-girl porn and for some reason associate other people’s lives with ‘Masturbation.’ Go figure. But you’re terrified, and looking for someone, anyone, to blame, for a nightmare you can’t seem to escape. But it’s only a nightmare cause you’re trying to control everything and are desperately-afraid of what happens if you don’t. So you project the fear of *yourself* onto *others* instead of learning to live as a good person.Have a little faith. Some may tell you differently, but life isn’t a one-time pass-fail scenario based on a textbook you can’t read. It’ll be OK. We’re being Americans, now. We do not use the means of injustice for *anything,* (after much yammering and froth, of course.) That’s who we’re being right now. It’s not a bad thing to be.

  • Athena4

    As for the “society will collapse” strawman arguement, it’s just that. More FUD to try to scare people with. Canada allows same-sex marriage, and I don’t see their society collapsing anytime soon. Same with the U.K., Spain, and South Africa. Haven’t heard of any big natural disasters or God’s Wrath descending on them, have you? (For those who care, the terrorist attacks in the U.K. and Spain happened BEFORE they legalized same-sex marriage.) Haven’t heard anything terrible about Massachusetts, other than a whole lot of snow and power outages last winter, either. Nothing like Katrina, the flooding in North Dakota, or wildfires in California. Maybe this means that God WON’T go around smiting people that allow same-sex marriage?

  • DifferentLight

    I really don’t like how this article seems to pit the Mormon church against gays. The two can coexist. As Gordon B. Hinckley once said “Now we have gays in the church. Good People.”I belong to NorthStar, a support group for Mormon gays who seek to follow the church’s teachings. You would be surprised how many people with same-sex attractions have strong testimonies of the gospel. We support our leaders and we have a love for the gospel. Newsweek called growing up as a gay Mormon an “oppressive environment.” Let me tell you, it wasn’t a piece of cake. But I don’t know of any environment that isn’t oppressive to faithful gay Mormons, except NorthStar. It is getting better. Consider some of the expressions of love towards gays by our leaders:Gordon B. Hinckley: (Prophet) “People inquire about our position on those who consider themselves so-called gays and lesbians. My response is that we love them as sons and daughters of God”Elder Holland (Apostle) “I weep with admiration and respect at the faith and courage of such a man who is living with a challenge I have never faced. I love him and the thousands like him, male or female, who fight the good fight. I commend his attitude to all who struggle with or who are helping others who struggle with same-gender attraction”Elder Oaks (Apostle) “All should understand that persons (and their family members) struggling with the burden of same-sex attraction are in special need of the love and encouragement that is a clear responsibility of Church members, who have signified by covenant their willingness to bear one another’s burdens and so fulfil the law of Christ.”In response to the question of the church’s teaching on gays, Elder Packer (President of the Apostles) said “We understand why some feel we reject them. That is not true. We do not reject you, only immoral behavior. We cannot reject you, for you are the sons and daughters of God. We will not reject you, because we love you. You may even feel that we do not love you. That also is not true.”It isn’t easy being in the Mormon Church when you aren’t straight, but it is even harder when everyone tries to pit your religion against you. If Mormons hate LGB people and LGB people hate Mormons, where does that put the Mormon LGB community? I am desperately trying to build bridges here, and everyone wants to tear them down.

  • Paganplace

    “I really don’t like how this article seems to pit the Mormon church against gays.”Nah, what ‘pitted the Mormon Church against gays’ what what they deliberately spent millions and Gods-know how-many man-hours they spent pitting themselves against gays. By trying to divide ethnic, religious, and ‘sexual’ minorities against each other enough to squeak an injustice by to remove rights from another minority in America. Frankly, they want to kick me too hard over being a minority, I’m not gonna be in a position to defend *their* tails in spite of all they do when some Fundie decides to put ‘Abolish Mormonism’ to a popular vote. Perhaps my idealism is foolish by Christian and Mormon standards. Understand, though, my cheesed-off. Someone I love is involved.

  • Paganplace

    Anyway, sorry if that’s harsh, ‘Differentlight,’ but if your only concern is how to dutifully ‘struggle with your attractions’ as some kind of ‘ex-gay’ claiming mormons are gay-friendly while defending people who bankroll million-dollar defamation campaigns against those of us just trying to live out here, then..Yeah, you’re gonna have to look elsewhere for ‘sympathy’ than those you in fact came *here* to defame. You wanna build ‘bridges’ …start by standing for, not against, the freedom of those to whom being queer is more than ‘struggling with attractions.’ You know, those to whom marriage means something.

  • Paganplace

    (also sorry to rant, anyone else still reading, but if this guy wants to make it his religion to let clergy diddle him around about ‘temptations’ and ‘compassionately not being as mean to his sinful sexual attractions,’ well, he can do that to his heart’s content without anyone caring once those of us in the real world can live as free and equal American citizens. Real lives can’t wait. Shouldn’t wait. Shouldn’t suffer, while his church and so many like them try to make some kind of tawdry …whatever that is. Out of the lives and dignity of real people who suffer for these bizarre ideas we’re better off hating ourselves and being legally-disadvantaged. Of course we’re angry at your church, among others, ‘Differentlight.’ ‘God’ didn’t put us on this Earth for you to externalize your conflict with the contents of your pants upon.

  • DifferentLight

    You seem to be making a lot of assumptions about me, PaganPlace. You don’t know me. You don’t know my story. You don’t know what I have done or haven’t done for gay rights.I am thankful for my church’s stance on homosexuality. I have been so much happier since I have sworn off guys and have lived according to the teachings of my church. I know that the church is true and nothing can deter me from it.My “struggle” was having to deal with people who wanted to tell me that I had no choice about my sexuality, that the Mormon Church hated me, that I shouldn’t be able to get counseling, and the likes. It is a struggle to deal with same-sex attraction with people like that around.I understand not all gays want to live the life I am living. That is fine, and the Mormon Church is not asking them to. But lots of gays want to. Michael Glatze was a gay rights activist before he converted to the Mormon Church. I personally know several gays who have converted to the Mormon Church. If you think that the Mormon Church hates gays, why do some of them join the church?The article references Affirmation. It should also reference members of Evergreen, NorthStar, and many other gays and lesbians who have been positively affected by the church’s stance on homosexuality.Prop 8 was another matter. It had nothing to do with homosexuality. You can still have sex with whoever you want, and same-sex couples still have all the rights of married couples under Californian law. One of the purposes of marriage is to create a family that if they chose to have kids, those kids will have both a father and a mother. Of course, there are other reasons, like love, but having both a man and a woman is one of the reasons.There are lots of things kids need while being raised, including love and commitment, but one of them is to have both a good father and a good mother. Too many kids are motherless or fatherless, and Prop 8 was a statement that fathers do matter, and a second mother is not an equal replacement for a father. Lesbians can be great mothers, but kids need a male role model.The Mormon Church isn’t the only ones who think this. 52% of Californians think this, and even Elton John supported Prop 8. Do you think the Mormon Church, 52% of Californians and Elton John hate gays because they think a father can’t be replaced with a second mother?

  • Paganplace

    I mean, you know, I wish you well, Differentlight, but the fact is, if whatever you’re doing is making you *so* blind* to what the Mormon church is *doing to people just like you who aren’t Mormon,* that you support and defend what they’ve done, …then I don’t hold out any great hopes for your wholeness in a marriage of any kind. I say, ‘you’re hurting us,’ and you say why you think it is OK, if you hear at all. What your Church paid for was lies about the *law,* and real human beings. Wasn’t about whatever they have you bent around to begin with. Can’t you see that?

  • lgubala

    I was linked to this article by a family member. (who is an active Jehovah’s Witness)The JW’s in my family refuse to have contact with me because I cannot in good conscience follow a religion that is so misleading and divisive in it’s teachings and practices. I have been informed that my children will be destroyed by God because of my “failure to follow the only true religion”.Jehovah’s Witnesses fight these court battles for their benefit and their benefit ALONE. They do not care about other religions as they believe all other religions are ruled/controlled by Satan. (these are their teachings)Next time they come to your door with their bookbags, suits and mock concern…know who you are opening your door to.

  • A-Voter

    .