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MA, NY, CA--who's next?
March 14, 2005 4:43 PM   Subscribe

Love and Marriage, Love and Marriage... California joins New York in a lower-court decision for marriage equality, with the judge stating, "The idea that marriage-like rights without marriage is adequate smacks of a concept long rejected by the courts — separate but equal," ... And in DC, Ken Mehlman, (closeted) head of the RNC, in an interview with the AP, backslides on his party's trumpeting of anti-gay sentiment: - It's not his job as head of the party to tell states whether they should allow same-sex couples to wed or form civil unions. "Certainly our platform states that the party is committed to ensuring that there is traditional marriage," he said, but he didn't think the party should take a position on state initiatives. More on today's court decision here.
posted by amberglow (132 comments total)

 
the actual text of the ruling (PDF) can be downloaded from my last link.

this was good, when discussing how the courts struck down the ban on interracial marriages in CA: ...the fact alone that the discrimination has been sanctioned by the state for many years does not supply such (constitutional) justification. ...
posted by amberglow at 4:50 PM on March 14, 2005


That damned Constitution! We're going to have to do something about it!
posted by interrobang at 4:51 PM on March 14, 2005


"Certainly our platform states that the party is committed to ensuring that there is traditional marriage," he said...

Because that's what the gays want. To eliminate straight marriage.
posted by salad spork at 4:55 PM on March 14, 2005


Should society endorse the marriage of a man with his post menopausal sister/mother/grandmother? (Assume they love each other) Why or why not?

Suppose this loving couple would also like to adopt children -- does this sound like a good idea?
posted by bevets at 5:01 PM on March 14, 2005


Kenny Mehlman sez "'Certainly our platform states that the party is committed to ensuring that there is traditional marriage,'... but he didn't think the party should take a position on state initiatives."

Translation: Thanks for your votes, fundies. Thanks to you, the rich will have their tax cuts and the neo-cons will get their wars, and the rich neo-cons will get defense contracts. Now crawl back into your holes until we need your votes again.
posted by orthogonality at 5:04 PM on March 14, 2005


Hey salad, what the hell are you typing about? Eliminate? Are you nuts? Did your Klan Wiz tell you to type that? Or was that just to get a rise?

Ya Nazi Bastard!!

and no I'm very straight.
posted by The Infamous Jay at 5:06 PM on March 14, 2005


It's a prickly issue, but I would argue that homosexuality results from (survey says!) biological differences (the way skin color does), while marriage between family members would be based on a personal preference.

I'm happy about this decision - but there is a long way to go.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 5:06 PM on March 14, 2005


Ah, the old incest canard. And now, with extra post-menopausal non sequitur goodness! Tastes delicious with a slice of lemon and a side of bile.

Yes, interrobang, clearly that whole constitution was just the work of a bunch of "activist judges" in the first place!

On preview: Infamous Jay, you may want to check your sarcasm meter re: salad spork's comment.
posted by scody at 5:09 PM on March 14, 2005


Suppose this loving couple would also like to adopt children -- does this sound like a good idea?
Why not? There's no screening for heterosexual parents and there are an awful lot of us who shouldn't be allowed to have kids. I haven't heard a sane and rational response on how it's worse for a kid to be raised in a homosexual household than to be raised by the state or in a string of foster homes.
posted by substrate at 5:12 PM on March 14, 2005


bevets,

If they're both consenting adults, "society" should mind its own business. It is probably, in most cases, unwise to undertake an endeavor such as you describe, but are you therefore suggesting we ought to make illegal every human activity that is unwise?
posted by eustacescrubb at 5:12 PM on March 14, 2005


bevets: do you have anything of substance to add, or are you just squicked out by Teh Gay and lashing out with ridiculous incest worries? Might as well say "Look out, next they'll let people marry their moms! boogedy boogedy!"
posted by emjaybee at 5:15 PM on March 14, 2005


Serious question: do you feel that polygamy / polyamory will be the next step in public acceptance? Can you find a principled differnce between gay marriage and poligamous marriage? Both seem to be justified under the same "consenting adults" basis. One just happens to be more popular right now.

Full disclosure: I live near San Francisco and two of my close friends got married last February, so I'm all for this on a personal level. Just wondering where we're going. If anybody has an issue with my stance I'll be happy to go discuss it with them at Badlands.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 5:16 PM on March 14, 2005


On failure to preview: emjaybee - bevets might not have framed it as well as possible (understatement of the year), but can you give a non ad-hominem response?
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 5:18 PM on March 14, 2005


Oh sweet holy...Bevets is here too? I'm assuming based on the same handle and similar style.

I suggest that before anyone get into a debate with Bevets you examine his post history on (for example) Fark. From my observations, Bevets has no desire to argue, debate or even answer; rather he/she seems to enjoy popping in, inserting as you say, non-sequitor misquotes and other silliness.

Bevets. if you are not the person described, I profoundly apologize and you have an odd taste in handles.
posted by Skorgu at 5:19 PM on March 14, 2005


Should society endorse the marriage of a man with his post menopausal sister/mother/grandmother? (Assume they love each other) Why or why not?

Suppose this loving couple would also like to adopt children -- does this sound like a good idea?


eustacescrubb

If they're both consenting adults, "society" should mind its own business. It is probably, in most cases, unwise to undertake an endeavor such as you describe, but are you therefore suggesting we ought to make illegal every human activity that is unwise?

Marriage is the social endorsement of sexual relations between one man and one woman.

There is nothing preventing men and women or men and men or women and women having sexual relations outside of marriage.

Why should the definition of marriage be changed? Under what circumstances should marriage be denied?
posted by bevets at 5:21 PM on March 14, 2005


A strong objection to the incest argument is that "consensual incest" represents something of an oxymoron. When a person has lived his or her entire life with someone else in a family setting, the liberal axiom of individualism might well break down. Individual decision-making about family members, after all, is not guided by the same considerations as those concerning strangers.--from here

and worth a repost: The Economist: The case for gay marriage
posted by amberglow at 5:22 PM on March 14, 2005


Serious question: do you feel that polygamy / polyamory will be the next step in public acceptance? Can you find a principled differnce between gay marriage and poligamous marriage? Both seem to be justified under the same "consenting adults" basis. One just happens to be more popular right now.
I don't think so--and there've been tons and tons of terrible stories coming from women and children who have been involved in polygamous marriages out west. We've all seen them on tv or heard about them, i think. If polygamous people want legal recognition, they have to work for it, and fight for it.
posted by amberglow at 5:28 PM on March 14, 2005




The madness has spread.
posted by thewittyname at 5:31 PM on March 14, 2005


thedevildancedlightly: I would say that while there are few differences in principle between homosexual marriage and polygamous/polyandrous (always seems to get forgotten somehow...) marriage, there needs to be an examination of the legal ramifications of having multi-person marriages.

The example that springs to mind is the one of the sanctity of conversations between two married persons. How would this extend to a more than two person marriage? Would it extend between all n members? This could rapidly turn into another class of legal entity alongside corporations and partnerships.

I'm going to ignore idiotic interjections from now on, but let me just say that while I personally would feel a bit icky about a pseudo-incestuous relationship as described above, I cannot find a matter of principle that would lead me to believe that such a thing should be outlawed.

The only line I think needs to be drawn is with regard to the prevention of emotional/psychological damage to children. I would feel mildly ambivalent about a proscription on such a couple adopting merely because the vast majority of such relationships are deleteriously incestuous but I would still vote for it.

On preview: Bevets is wrong.

Marriage is the social endorsement of sexual relations between one man and one woman. Marriage is a legal recognition of a specific kind of relationship. The fact that it has been railroaded into a social/ethical idea is not pertinent to the discussion.
posted by Skorgu at 5:31 PM on March 14, 2005


"Traditional" marriage defined: Union of one unmarried man and one unmarried woman, resulting in the same being thusly married.

No slippery slope into heterosexual polygamy there...let's try it with "gay" marriage:

"Gay" marriage defined: Union of one unmarried person and one other unmarried person, resulting in the same being thusly married.

No slippery slope into polygamy, heterosexual or otherwise, here, either... where did you see one, thedevildancedlightly?
posted by odinsdream at 5:34 PM on March 14, 2005


Bevet your wrong, n Historically Marriage is a legal state toi determine property ownership and heriditary rights. Sexuality was a side effect/benny or an "also ran" if you would.

Heck thrugh history one man-one woman was the exception in western civilization NOT the rule. The Bible backs me on this. Marrying sisters and daughters was also allowed to protect property, the Bible backs me on this as well.
Selling your kids to the highest bidder for marriage IS STILL done with the blessing of the church in most western countrys (we call it Dowery and mostly in the higher castes of society") so this higher moral definition we speak of historically does not really exist, cept in Ward/June Cleaver world of course....
../rant
posted by Elim at 5:39 PM on March 14, 2005


thanks(lol) scody(lol) my meter was seeing red. Topics like this tend to do that. I guess I should have waited and attack Bevets instead.

But really....how is it that a corporation can form/merge for profit, taxes and protection under the law but two humans can't because they share the same parts?

I just glad that there are some judges out there with some sense.
posted by The Infamous Jay at 5:40 PM on March 14, 2005


I have yet to find a reliable article that says children raised by homosexual parents will inevitably be messed up. They can face harassment on the issue from their peers--but that is not a fault of the parents' homosexuality, but of societal anti-gay bias. The only requirement for good parenting seems to be love, attention, and care.

Polygamy is an entirely separate issue. It's like saying "You like broccoli? Oh, I bet you like carrots, too! Just go have sex with them if you like them so much--you carrot-sex freak!" Slippery slope is a logical fallacy.
posted by schroedinger at 5:42 PM on March 14, 2005


Thewittyname, that is truly awesome.
posted by schroedinger at 5:43 PM on March 14, 2005


Wow too much beer before I type, sorry for the spEEElin. folx....
posted by Elim at 5:43 PM on March 14, 2005


I am actually torn a bit - Marriage was originally a Christian institution, so I can understand their indignation at the idea of a pair they disapprove of receiving their de facto blessing. On the other hand, marriage has been secularized by the government for a long time now, and is as much a legal state as it is a spiritual one.
The deciding factor in the issue for me seems to be that both gay people are citizens of the United States, and under the constitution are guaranteed equal protection under the law. Since laws govern tax and inheritance benefits based on marriage status, they should be allowed access to that status. Seems cut and dry to me.
And since the tax benefits for marriage were designed with the idea of two people being joined into a single legal unit, polygamy and polyamory seem like they violate the requirements for it. Just my opinion.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 5:44 PM on March 14, 2005


Marriage existed WAYYYY before christianity Me thinks...
posted by Elim at 5:44 PM on March 14, 2005


That being said this IS a equal rights issue, not a church issue.
posted by Elim at 5:45 PM on March 14, 2005


An important note: the California decision being discussed found only that the California prohibition on same-sex marriage violates the California Constitution, not the federal Constitution. This is important because there are two bills to put an initiative on the November ballot amending the California Constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage, which would legislatively overturn this decision.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 5:47 PM on March 14, 2005


Yay for my state! Marriage is a contract engaged in by two people. There's a notion!

On preview, what monju_bosatsu said. But still - yay!
posted by goofyfoot at 5:52 PM on March 14, 2005


Unless the amendments are ruled to violate this Clause:

California Constitution, Article 1, Declaration of Rights, Sec. 7.

(b) A citizen or class of citizens may not be granted privileges or immunities not granted on the same terms to all citizens. Privileges or immunities granted by the Legislature may be altered or revoked

Seems Seperate be equal aint gonna fly even in a new amendment.

If they have to get rid of this section then its gonna suck to be a Californian.
posted by Elim at 5:54 PM on March 14, 2005


Heh, you're right Elim. I guess I just mean here in the U.S... I mean, even lobsters pair up for life. I learned that on Friends.

Anyway, the battle is not over, not even this skirmish. Be prepared for the worst.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 5:55 PM on March 14, 2005


we're prepared, and ready. : >
posted by amberglow at 5:58 PM on March 14, 2005


(oh, the rest of you can help if you want too--it's greatly appreciated)
posted by amberglow at 5:58 PM on March 14, 2005


Dood I'm with the gays on this their rights equal mine in this case. EIther we care about rights for all or I begin questioning folx patriotism.... (and we're all patriotic right? (grin))
posted by Elim at 6:01 PM on March 14, 2005


thewittyname should have won a bloggie for "Best improvement on a quonsar style comment."

I would like to make a distinction about Bevets' argument: he doesn't address the issue at hand. His comment is, in fact, completely irrelevant, despite thedevildancedlightly's tender rephrasing.

So why would he bring it up? Well, he's employing 2 different logical fallacies to undermine the argument for gay marriage. The first is the slippery slope fallacy. At least, the slippery slope fallacy is implied. See, if we legalize gay marriage, then clearly incestuous marriage is next, right? Except it isn't necessarily, because incest and gay love are not the same thing and what's used to justifiably defend one doesn't immediately open the door to the other. This brings up his other logical fallacy: The False Analogy. By claiming, as the devildancedlightly did, that they both fall under the "consenting adults" banner that they're both likely to be guaranteed a right to marriage under rulings like this one, devildanced and bevets ignore the fundamental differences between the two different types of relationships. One similar characteristic does not make them both the same, nor does it imply that one will immediately follow the other.

But even if it did, the "Where do we draw the line" argument is not conducive to discussion. The answer is simply that we or a future generation will draw the line where we see fit. If someone later moves the line further away from standard hetero marriages, then that's their concern, and it doesn't change the merit of gay marriages, now.

Incest is an important and tricky issue, one that deserves its own discussion and special attention at some point. But here, it's just a derail and I suspect an intentional one.

posted by shmegegge at 6:03 PM on March 14, 2005


The polygamy / incest / bestiality canards (hereafter: PIB) are just that: canards. Logically, it's tantamount to changing the subject.

Philosopher John Corvino has written extensively in the area of gay civil rights, and while he has penned more detailed analyses, there's an easily digestible analysis of just what's lacking in, e.g., Bevets' line of reasoning here:

Another way to indicate the logical distance between homosexual relationships and PIB relationships is to point out that PIB relationships can be either homosexual or heterosexual. Proponents of the PIB challenge must therefore explain why they group PIB relationships with homosexual relationships rather than heterosexual ones. There's only one plausible reason: PIB and homosexuality have traditionally been condemned. But (whoops!) that's also true of interracial relationships, which traditionalists (typically) no longer condemn. And (whoops again!) they've just argued in a circle: the question at hand is why we should group PIB relationships with homosexual relationships rather than heterosexual ones. Saying that “we've always grouped them together” doesn't answer the question, it begs it.

His writing is clear, humble, and spot-on. There's a whole selection of essays on homosexuality, ethics, and public policy by Corvino here.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:05 PM on March 14, 2005


First the slaves were freed, then women got the right to vote and now gays can marry. What's next, our government will advocate it's citizens equally regardless of race, class or religious preference?

Oh, right, they can't legally marry yet. But dammit, I hope that track record is good for something!
posted by snsranch at 6:06 PM on March 14, 2005


(on review, Corvino's take can be read as a defense of shmegegge's excellent points.)
posted by joe lisboa at 6:08 PM on March 14, 2005


Elim : >

and what shmegegge and joe lisboa said.
posted by amberglow at 6:08 PM on March 14, 2005


If California legalizes gay marriage, the next thing you know they'll be letting black men marry our white women! And when that happens, it will be the downfall of civilization!
posted by five fresh fish at 6:09 PM on March 14, 2005


Marriage was originally a Christian institution

Goddamn! All those poor Hindus are fucked now, ain't they! Not a single one of them is married!
posted by five fresh fish at 6:11 PM on March 14, 2005


Besides, (forgive me) gays can reproduce too!!!!
posted by snsranch at 6:11 PM on March 14, 2005


Dood! now that creeps me out a more than a few levels. (evil grin)
posted by Elim at 6:14 PM on March 14, 2005


I suddenly understand why some people are social conservatives: it's vastly easier.

When you accept the status quo -- these days, that gays shouldn't marry because gays have never been allowed to get married; or in yesteryear, that blacks shouldn't be allowed to marry whites -- there's no need to challenge one's preconceptions, one's upbringing, one's biases.

It's a difficult thing to say "Hey, the mores and values I was raised with were wrong. There is a better way, a more equitable way to treat people. I am going develop a concept of right and wrong based wholly on logical thought, not old habits and upbringing."
posted by five fresh fish at 6:16 PM on March 14, 2005


re: Mr. Yee's pregnancy: I could swear he's been pregnant for over two years now...
posted by five fresh fish at 6:17 PM on March 14, 2005


Why should the definition of marriage be changed? Under what circumstances should marriage be denied?

goofyfoot

Yay for my state! Marriage is a contract engaged in by two people. There's a notion!

Why only 2? Why not 3? Why not 3 million?
posted by bevets at 6:18 PM on March 14, 2005


Agin historically Your correewdct on that Last post, The bible promotes marryting MANY wives, so why shouldn't we?

(Frankly one is troubling enough!)
posted by Elim at 6:22 PM on March 14, 2005


Because, bevets, marriage as a legal institution was designed around the idea of a family unit of two people and their children. 3, 4, a million, they do not work with the way taxes and inheritance laws are adjusted by marriage. That's why.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 6:24 PM on March 14, 2005


Man, I never thought I would see the Summon Bevets Card at MetaFilter...Sweet!
posted by oflinkey at 6:25 PM on March 14, 2005


Here's my two cents...
Let's get the govt. out of the marriage business all together.

Civil unions for all different and same sex unions, that bestow the legal rights that currently define marriage.

Marriage should then be the domain of the church, mosque, temple of your choosing if you choose a religious ceremony.

Take the word marriage out of the equation and this issue disappears.
posted by wonway at 6:32 PM on March 14, 2005


Wonway its a good notion but I'd prefer a legal battle to a religious one...less killing.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 6:36 PM on March 14, 2005


Dang it! Marriage was ALWAYS about property folks! Read your history! Not about Two people and 2.75 Kids. PROPERTY AND FUTURE OWNERSHIP THERE OF!

lets go backto ancient Greece, marriage was primarily a way for the upper class to pass down family property
in fact!

EVEN NOW Only 20% of the world’s societies are considered strictly monogamous, in which a person is married once in his or her life (Encarta ‘95, 1994). The United States is not even a strictly monogamous society. Our society has serial monogamy, in which a person may marry more than one person, so long as the person has only one spouse at a time.

Heterosexual marriage began as a method of firming tribal alliances, procreation and tracing inheritance rights. Historical marriages documented in the Bible were by ANY modern comparison, barbarous, in which women were seized during warfare to become wives. Parents viewed their daughters as child-bearing commodities, and just as frequently sold their children into slavery. Polygamy was frequent, especially in early Biblical marriages, such as the stories of Solomon and his "700 wives, princesses and 300 concubines,” as related in 1 Kings 11:3 (Revised Standard Version).

Enough of the myth of the origins of modern marrage...

Heck Romantic marrage is mostly an exclusively modern creation
.
Facts Not Fantasy,
posted by Elim at 6:37 PM on March 14, 2005


joelisboa, that article is excellent. Thanks for the link.
posted by shmegegge at 6:38 PM on March 14, 2005


Why only 2? Why not 3? Why not 3 million?

Because any 3 people -- gay or straight, black or white, circus clown or investment banker -- have the same right to enter into the same kinds of relationships, no matter who they are. That includes legal partnerships, religious institutions, moral improvement societies, sewing circles etc. Same with 3 million. Communities, cities, states, countries (gay people, straight people, or even a mix of both!) can (if they choose) provide for moral guidance, property protection, and social bonding. (And a bonus: any of these 3 or 3 million people can have gay, straight or plushie sex with each other whenever they want.)

But take any two people and the same principle doesn't apply. Two straight people can enter into legal/moral covenants that two gay people cannot.

You may not have a problem with the inequality. But you asked a question, and that (I believe) is the answer.
posted by PlusDistance at 7:07 PM on March 14, 2005


man, bvets has only three posts on Mefi, and they show such a inviting target for debate style correction.

It has occurred to me that religion does not really define who we are, it defines how we justify our worldview. If an individual dislikes people who are gay they can use the bible to justify it and remove the responsible from themselves. "it's not ME is is being intolerant, I can be like this because christianity(or whatever religion) says I can". Thing is, the bible also advocates slavery, blood sacrifice and a whole host of distasteful things that people can ignore at will and still be good christians. Likewise in places the Bible can also advocate tolerance. There are tolerant christians and intolerant ones, so the religion is not necessarily at fault. It is how individuals justify themselves. They are not bastards because they are christians, they are bastards and christians. (just like some can be bastard atheist, hindu, muslim etc.)

Yay for Calf. I do worry this will be used in mid-term elections. It is kind of shaping up like that here in MN as well.
posted by edgeways at 7:09 PM on March 14, 2005


Perhaps I was ad hominem, my apologies. Long day, no beer. Anyway, I think bevet's objections have been adequately argued down by other mefites. I think what irritated me was not that bevets or anyone might be against incestuous marriage, but the assumption that gay marriage would inevitably lead to same. It would be easy enough to specify marriage as a contract between two unrelated individuals (after defining "related), seeing as there are already laws against marrying your brother, etc., and no compelling social interest, to my knowledge, in changing that custom, at least in the U.S. There are many social complications to incest marriages/polygamous marriages that our society would have to justify to make them legal. Gay marriage, in comparison, is a piece of cake, legally speaking.

Personally I think we're more likely to get rid of civil marriage altogether than move to an Anyone Can Marry As Many Anyones as They Want society.
posted by emjaybee at 7:15 PM on March 14, 2005


Among the friends I have, there are three married couples worth mentioning here: Ted and Alice, Mike and Doug, and Karen and Evelyn. not real names, natch

Ted and Alice have non-identical twins that they conceived with the help of doctors, as they were unable to conceive on their own.

Mike and Doug have a child that they adopted, because the child's mother was a drug addict, and wanted a better life for her soon-to-be-born child. She picked Mike and Doug out of several potential adoptive couples.

Karen and Evelyn have non-identical twins that one of them conceived with the help of doctors and a sperm donor (a good friend of the couple).

So here we have three couples, dedicated to each other (whether the law recognizes them as "married" or not) and providing three loving, nurturing homes for five children. Isn't that a beautiful thing? Isn't that a lovely story? Doesn't that make you happy? After all, that's what's best for the kids, right?

You wouldn't argue that Mike and Doug's child would be better off with the drug-addicted single mother that didn't want to keep him, would you?

You wouldn't argue that Karen and Evelyn had an "unnatural" conception, would you, when it requires you also argue that Ted and Alice's IVF-assisted conception was "unnatural"?

I wish people would stop getting so worked up about who is having sex with whom, and just realize how good it is for children to have loving, nurturing families to take care of them. I don't know about you, but that's the first thing I think of when I hear of a homosexual couple adopting or conceiving a child.

Yes, these are real people and situations being described here; these are not theoretical families.
posted by davejay at 7:24 PM on March 14, 2005


emjaybee, I think the boundaries between our souls will eventually decay and we will all merge together into a huge ocean of love and empathy.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 7:25 PM on March 14, 2005


Personally I think we're more likely to get rid of civil marriage altogether than move to an Anyone Can Marry As Many Anyones as They Want society.

And take away the tax breaks? Surely you jest!
posted by schroedinger at 7:26 PM on March 14, 2005


Followup: I'm not claiming that children are a mandatory part of a relationship, or that not having children isn't a valid and reasonable choice (when it is a choice, which isn't always the case).
posted by davejay at 7:28 PM on March 14, 2005


Holy cow... bevets showed up! Metafilter has arrived.
posted by BoringPostcards at 7:33 PM on March 14, 2005


Serious question: do you feel that polygamy / polyamory will be the next step in public acceptance?

Probably not, since there are a lot less potential polygamous marraiges out there than gay marriages, from what I can see. Although, truth be told, if everyone's of age and consenting, knock yourselves out. Why any man would want to put up with exponential amount of nagging that multiple wives would bring is beyond me, though.
posted by jonmc at 7:38 PM on March 14, 2005


is bevets known by you guys? what's up? a legendary troll? what?
posted by amberglow at 7:45 PM on March 14, 2005


Why should the definition of marriage be changed? Under what circumstances should marriage be denied?

Why only 2? Why not 3? Why not 3 million?


PlusDistance

Because any 3 people -- gay or straight, black or white, circus clown or investment banker -- have the same right to enter into the same kinds of relationships, no matter who they are. That includes legal partnerships, religious institutions, moral improvement societies, sewing circles etc. Same with 3 million. Communities, cities, states, countries (gay people, straight people, or even a mix of both!) can (if they choose) provide for moral guidance, property protection, and social bonding. (And a bonus: any of these 3 or 3 million people can have gay, straight or plushie sex with each other whenever they want.)

But take any two people and the same principle doesn't apply. Two straight people can enter into legal/moral covenants that two gay people cannot.

You may not have a problem with the inequality. But you asked a question, and that (I believe) is the answer.


Are you suggesting that it is impossible for 2 men or 2 women to make commitments through legal contracts?

There is no discrimination. Any man is legally entiltled to marry any woman. Any woman is legally entiltled to marry any man. This does not concern the ability of a person to marry -- it concerns the very definition of marriage. If this definition is going to be changed, it is reasonable to ask why the definition should be changed. It is also reasonable to ask at what point in changing the definition does the term become meaningless?

California could pass a law that says 'triangles must have at least 3 sides'. Certainly this would reduce discrimination against 4 sided triangles, but would the word 'triangle' still denote a meaningful concept?
posted by bevets at 7:45 PM on March 14, 2005


Because, bevets, marriage as a legal institution was designed around the idea of a family unit of two people and their children. 3, 4, a million, they do not work with the way taxes and inheritance laws are adjusted by marriage. That's why.

And marriage as a legal institution was designed around the idea of a hetrosexual couple. Homosexuals bringing up children doesn't work. Unless you want to see a generation of abused and confused children.
posted by drscroogemcduck at 7:48 PM on March 14, 2005


is bevets known by you guys? what's up? a legendary troll? what?
posted by amberglow at 10:45 PM EST on March 14


All of the above. I first "experienced" him on Fark, and he had a brief run on Plastic before the karma system ground him down. Gay people are his favorite subject, with the Christian Bible being a close second. If it's not the same guy, this fellow has the routine down cold.
posted by BoringPostcards at 7:52 PM on March 14, 2005


ahh...he's not so bad--we've seen much worse here.

bring.it.
posted by amberglow at 7:53 PM on March 14, 2005


Google search for "summon bevets"

He sucks up a lot of people's time and energy and manages to frame every conversation about gay people while he's present. Just saying.
posted by BoringPostcards at 7:56 PM on March 14, 2005


amber, I've seen bevets all over fark* (where the "summon bevets" card first appeared, and has become a cliche), and this one sure sounds like the same troll guy.

*Only a reader, not a member. Like I have enough time for everything!

On preview: what BoringPostcards said, and, um, amberglow already answered.
posted by yhbc at 7:57 PM on March 14, 2005


bevets: welcome, and enjoy. : >
posted by amberglow at 8:03 PM on March 14, 2005


Homosexuals bringing up children doesn't work. Unless you want to see a generation of abused and confused children.

Oh please. Where did you pull that tired old lie from? Tthe actual data available not only does not support your "abused and confused" idiocy, it strongly implies the exact opposite. But I'm sure you won't let the facts stop you.
posted by biscotti at 8:05 PM on March 14, 2005


Homosexuals bringing up children doesn't work. Unless you want to see a generation of abused and confused children.

Do you have anything to back that up besides wishful thinking? I'm willing to bet that if gay adoption were to become normative, the incidence would be relatively equal to the incidence of abuse among straight parents.

Gay people are just people, not magical woodland creatures, for Pete's sake.
posted by jonmc at 8:13 PM on March 14, 2005


Yes! bevets and drscroogemcduck back to back! Wingnuts represent!
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:16 PM on March 14, 2005


amberglow

bevets: welcome, and enjoy. : >

I appreciate your civil reception.
posted by bevets at 8:19 PM on March 14, 2005


Gay people are just people, not magical woodland creatures, for Pete's sake.
sez you! ; >

(and i mean it, bevets--it's a good place here, and most of us treat each other with at least a little respect. don't mess that up, ok?)
posted by amberglow at 8:21 PM on March 14, 2005


But, what is the first Goggle return on "bevets"? - "An Atheist Fairy Tale"?

I can identify with both!

There's the "fairy" and the "atheist"!
posted by ericb at 8:27 PM on March 14, 2005


Gay people are just people, not magical woodland creatures, for Pete's sake.
sez you! ; >


Heh.

I think it's an important point to make (and I think that recognizing it is the key to the absorption of the gay population into mainstream acceptance). Despite what either Fred Phelps or Larry Kramer would have you believe, gays & bisexuals people are no worse and no better than straight people, they're just attracted to different people sexually. That's the only difference. End of list. Otherwise, they're prone all the same nobilities and foibles of being human. I could be wrong, but I imagine most queerfolk look forward to the day when most Americans will look at them as just another person.
posted by jonmc at 8:27 PM on March 14, 2005


*the first Google return*
posted by ericb at 8:27 PM on March 14, 2005


Gay people are just people, not magical woodland creatures, for Pete's sake.

They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras.
posted by drscroogemcduck at 8:33 PM on March 14, 2005


They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras.

I guess you didn't go away to college.
posted by Doug at 8:38 PM on March 14, 2005


Wow. Set shields on IGNORE, Scotty.
posted by yhbc at 8:38 PM on March 14, 2005


They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras.

Swing Clubs and "Straight Sex" Mardi Gras !!!
posted by ericb at 8:42 PM on March 14, 2005


don't even bother, eric--drscrooge is just jealous.
posted by amberglow at 8:44 PM on March 14, 2005


PublicRadioFan.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 8:44 PM on March 14, 2005


Why any man would want to put up with exponential amount of nagging that multiple wives would bring is beyond me, though.

HA!
Having said that I could, as a bisexual, imagine being in a relationship with with a man-woman couple.
posted by berek at 8:44 PM on March 14, 2005


Oh, for fuck's sake.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 8:44 PM on March 14, 2005


man, this thread kinda got derailed eh?

Random jumps of topic and non-supported accusations. Define the debate, stay focused, might be an impossibility with so many players.

*sigh*

A WITCH, A WITCH.
posted by edgeways at 8:51 PM on March 14, 2005


They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras.

It's funnier when you read it with Scrooge McDuck's Scottish brogue.
posted by AlexReynolds at 8:57 PM on March 14, 2005


MetaFilter: They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras.
posted by yhbc at 8:59 PM on March 14, 2005


Back on topic: in addition to Massachusetts, California ... there's progress in Connecticut, Maryland and elsewhere!

"We're Here. We're Queer. Get Used To It!"
posted by ericb at 9:06 PM on March 14, 2005


There is no discrimination. Any man is legally entiltled to marry any woman. Any woman is legally entiltled to marry any man. This does not concern the ability of a person to marry -- it concerns the very definition of marriage.

What a surprise. You brought up Orson Scott Card's completely ignorant and wholly unsupported argument.

Seriously, though, are you for real or just trolling? Gay marriage has existed before this, it currently exists elsewhere in the world. Since when has the california law definition of marriage pre-2005 been the only valid definition?
posted by shmegegge at 9:10 PM on March 14, 2005


Bevets is right, factually; this is the legal, federal definition, as far as I can tell.

The problem is, the definition is arbitrary. The fact that it exists as written right now is not a sufficient self-justification; I'm not a lawyer, but I think the fourteenth amendment 1) makes a gay marriage ban obviously unconstitutional, and 2) guarantees the necessary legal protection and freedom for gay marriage.
posted by clockzero at 9:11 PM on March 14, 2005


cool, eric! now to get those state amendments overturned--altho the Supremes will eventually do it.

from Pam's House Blend (a great site): Freepers react to California judge on gay marriage
posted by amberglow at 9:11 PM on March 14, 2005


clockzero, marriage is not an american invention. There are other nations who have had gay marriage for a number of years, now. The fact is, it exists, it's right that gays should have it. Bevets argument is both incorrect and diverting from the real issue.
posted by shmegegge at 9:34 PM on March 14, 2005


has anyone else noticed that he's only responding to people that follow him on his derail, btw? He's only responding to people trying to defend pib, or who follow him on his slippery slope OSC "Marriage will lose all meaning" hysteria.
posted by shmegegge at 9:40 PM on March 14, 2005


shmegegge:

No, of course, it's not an American invention. But nations are separate legal entities, and simply because something exists as a practice sanctioned by law in one country, it is not right that it be adopted legally somewhere else. Islamic theocracies, for example, may have laws which would be considered inappropriate in Canada, or Norway, or the U.S. And, honestly, the mere fact that people do it somewhere in the world is not, I think, a sufficient justification.

I'm curious, though; what do you think the real issue is? I see this as a legal issue rather than a moral one because to my mind there's no possible moral justification for the state prohibiting homosexual people from marrying; in other words, the only issue, as far as I can see, is that the pertinent legal definition is unjust.
posted by clockzero at 10:04 PM on March 14, 2005


clockzero, I think we're coming at that issue in two different ways. When brevets argues that gay marriage would make marriage meaningless, he assumes that gay marriage doesn't exist and hasn't existed. I was pointing out that that is an incorrect assumption. If legalizing gay marriage were to make marriage meaningless, then it's already been done. I was not using the fact that other countries legalized gay marriage as a way of saying "now we have to." I agree that another country's laws are not sufficient justification to change ours. I just think that we're not actually talking about the definition of marriage because we didn't define it, and other cultures have already included gays in the definition, whether we like it or not.

I see the real issue as being a moral issue. I think laws, in this country are intended to defend the people of this country by upholding the highest moral standards. At our best they defend the oppressed. At our worst they are justification for the continuing oppression of minorities. The judge from the above article saw the idea of banning gay marriage as the latter, and in my opinion rightly ruled against it. So really, I think it's technically legal but essentially moral. This country was born with the best intentions and an unavoidable capacity for injustice written into its constitution. At many points, injustice that our forefathers did not foresee has been recognized and the law changed to stamp it out. Ultimately, this will be no different. So, the law is the instrument, not the reason.
posted by shmegegge at 12:01 AM on March 15, 2005


I agree shmegegge, and I think we're all coming to the same point by different routes - I consider the issue almost completely legal in nature and that's why I'm confident talking about it with people. But I never thought about what you saida about upholding the highest possible moral standards, and I think that's insightful as well. It shoudl be considered, though, that for some (for many in fact) the highest moral standards come directly from scriptures - scriptures which have been translated, interpreted, retranslated and reinterpreted for a thousand years. I don't need to tell you that of course :) but certainly there are people who in good spirit find their moral base in these ambiguous writings, and I think it is our duty to correct them on a legal basis first, so as to create good, and a moral basis second, to cement it.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 12:58 AM on March 15, 2005


I just think that we're not actually talking about the definition of marriage because we didn't define it, and other cultures have already included gays in the definition, whether we like it or not.

Well, there is a definition in the U.S. legal code which I linked to above, and it is one which I consider unjust. I'm not sure what you meant by this.

I think we agree, fundamentally, but we are arguing for this in different ways. I say it's a legal issue because the moral issue (for our society), I think, was decided when the constitution was written and amended as it now stands. The constitution already supports the uninhibited exercise of those freedoms granted to any citizens to all citizens, so...end of story.

I see that this is, between us, is really a discussion of the interstices of morality and law. My position is that law does not appeal to morality for its justification, that it exists of its own accord and necessity, and if flawed cannot be remedied by an appeal to morality. I think the judge ruled against the law because it conflicted with a more basic law, not because it was morally defective; at least, I hope he did.

I wonder too what part(s) of the constitution you think have an unavoidable capacity to sanction injustice.
posted by clockzero at 1:23 AM on March 15, 2005


Marriage is the social endorsement of sexual relations between one man and one woman.

Maybe where you live, but that definition isn't universal, and in countries with greater commitments to human rights (for example, Denmark) is incorrect.
posted by biffa at 2:54 AM on March 15, 2005


I meant, I see that what this is between us.
posted by clockzero at 3:28 AM on March 15, 2005


The problem with the "any man is free to marry any woman... why are you trying to change the definition of marriage" argument is that its the *exact*same* argument that was used against interracial marriage. "Any man can marry any woman of the same race... why are you trying to change the definition of marriage".

This goes back to the essential fact that on social issues conservatives are history's losers, and I strongly suspect that the historically aware conservative must be somewhat bitter about that. Not only have conservatives lost on every single social issue, they have lost so soundly that those who followed them had to embrace the liberal victory simply to survive.

Today no conservative would argue against the abolition of slavery (and certainly doesn't believe in it himself), but at one point conservatives made it their line in the sand, the point which when crossed would eradicate civilization. Similarly liberals fought and eventually won for women's right to vote, and today no one (outside a few people so fringe that mainstream conservatism doesn't even want to acknowledge that they exist) is opposed. Historically, on social issues, conservatives are the biggest political losers that exist.

What is ironic is that the arguments they use today are word for word the same as the arguments that were used in the 1930's-1960's against the coming marriage between me and my fiancee. I'm somewhat sympathetic, being on the loosing side is hard. But I'm not sympathetic enough to let up for even one moment.

Yes, we are changing the definition of marriage. And in the future it will almost certainly be changed again. Marriage, far from being an unchanging bedrock of civilization, has been redefined throughout history and will continue to be redefined in the future.
posted by sotonohito at 4:11 AM on March 15, 2005


In other news, the semi-great state of Indiana breaks out the white sheets and starts down the Constitutional-Ban-on-Gay-Marriage™ road. Swift passage is assured.
Of course, adopting daylight-savings time didn't stand a chance of passing...again.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:30 AM on March 15, 2005


shmegegge

clockzero, I think we're coming at that issue in two different ways. When brevets argues that gay marriage would make marriage meaningless, he assumes that gay marriage doesn't exist and hasn't existed. I was pointing out that that is an incorrect assumption. If legalizing gay marriage were to make marriage meaningless, then it's already been done.

It has already been done in other cultures -- the question is why would we want to make the concept meaningless in our culture?

I see the real issue as being a moral issue. I think laws, in this country are intended to defend the people of this country by upholding the highest moral standards. I think it's technically legal but essentially moral. So, the law is the instrument, not the reason.

Interesting that you would bring up morality -- Are you suggesting that there are moral standards which apply to everyone?
posted by bevets at 4:49 AM on March 15, 2005


I'll bite on the most recent bevets derail. Yes, there are moral standards that apply to everyone. Genuine morality is rooted in the individual and the rights of the individual. Violating the rights of the individual is immoral. Take slavery as an example, slave owners claimed that their individual property rights were violated by abolition. The larger point: that slavery violated the individual rights of the slaves was absent from their argument.

A corporation that pays its employees less than a living wage is acting in an immoral fashion. Similarly a government which grants special rights to a privileged group, but denies those same rights to another group is behaving in an immoral fashion.

But morality doesn't come from a book, it comes from simple self interest: I don't want people to violate my rights as an individual, therefore I will not violate theirs. That's the universal morality. You'll notice that morality has nothing to do with sex.

On topic: Personally I favor abolishing government involvement in marriage and instituting civil unions that grant the rights currently reserved for married people to any group of consenting adults. People who want a marriage can have a shaman, or witch doctor, or priest, or minister, or imam, or whatever invoke the god(s) blessing in marriage. I'd recommend that the government grant a civil union to anyone married by any religious figure in addition to granting such unions to people who request them without the intervention of any religious figure. If you can't find an [insert religious authority figure here] to perform the marriage then you'll just have to take the government civil union without the religious ceremony.

But granting special legal privileges to group A and denying those same privileges to group B is inherently immoral.

Side note on morality to bevits: are you going to explain how *this* changing of marriage is different from changing marriage to allow interracial marriages? Do you have the courage to attempt to explain how the fact that your arguments against homosexual marriage are word for word the same as the arguments used against interracial marriage? Or are you just a coward?
posted by sotonohito at 5:17 AM on March 15, 2005


There are over 4,800 codes in California state laws that treat people differently based on their marital status.
and
There are another 1,138 federal rights that only marriage grants. --from Marriage Equality CA
posted by amberglow at 5:28 AM on March 15, 2005


> This goes back to the essential fact that on social issues conservatives
> are history's losers,

Tell that to the Maoist/Leninist collectivists (if you can find one, there used to be millions of 'em, they were the ultimate wave of the future for 75 years, now maybe the Smithsonian has one in a jar.) We're all conservatives compared to somebody, and progressives compared to somebody else. I myself am conservative compared to some folks here but ultra-progressive compared to, oh, Otto von Bismarck.

In fact the case is merely that progressives say "the new road's built, let's go!" and conservatives say "The concrete's still wet, if you drive on it now you'll ruin it." And so, between the two group voices, we move forward at a more or less sustainable speed. Be grateful.
posted by jfuller at 5:29 AM on March 15, 2005


sotonohito:

But if this issue is moralized, how do you deal with the complaints of people whose moral universe abhors homosexuality? I would take issue with such complaints on a moral basis, as I'm sure you would, but how can you proceed once you've framed the argument in those terms?

But granting special legal privileges to group A and denying those same privileges to group B is inherently immoral.

Perhaps true, but more pertinently, it's unconstitutional. I think the desire to discuss this issue in moral terms cannot work because morality is fundamentally a function of social tradition, and different social groups just have different traditions in terms of acceptable practices; unfortunately, I think the sort of Golden Rule you cite is not how most people behave, morally speaking. Many people have a legalistic moral conception through which certain things are either ok or not ok, and the idea of reciprocity is foreign to this way of thinking, which does not consider moral interaction to have a humanistic, mutual dimension.

Some people may never approve of homosexual marriage. They don't need to. On the other hand, to use your example, there was a time in this country when so-called interracial marriages were regarded with disgust by many; perhaps someday nobody will bat an eye at married homosexual couples.
posted by clockzero at 5:40 AM on March 15, 2005


sotonohito

The problem with the "any man is free to marry any woman... why are you trying to change the definition of marriage" argument is that its the *exact*same* argument that was used against interracial marriage. "Any man can marry any woman of the same race... why are you trying to change the definition of marriage".

You are making the assumption that homosexuality is genetically determined -- Do you have empirical data to support this assumption?

Suppose it was determined that male sexual aggression is genetically determined -- Should rapists be punished (discriminated against) for following their genes?

sotonohito

But morality doesn't come from a book, it comes from simple self interest: I don't want people to violate my rights as an individual, therefore I will not violate theirs. That's the universal morality.

Are you suggesting that self interest is the root of all morality? Why should self interest be benevolent?
posted by bevets at 5:41 AM on March 15, 2005


It's not a moral issue, and that's changing the fight for equality to be on terms the opponents are more comfortable with. Either all citizens get equal rights or they don't. That's our constitution, and our history shows that the granting of those rights to more and more citizens who were denied those rights (blacks, women, mixed marriages, etc) is the way to go toward fulfilling that.

...the case is merely that progressives say "the new road's built, let's go!" and conservatives say "The concrete's still wet, if you drive on it now you'll ruin it." ...
Funny how not one conservative said that about the new "faith-based funding" or about new proscriptions on abortion access all over the country or new federal programs pushing marriage stability ... or about anything that benefits them, wet concrete or no. Kinda selective there, huh?
posted by amberglow at 5:48 AM on March 15, 2005


I don't think so--and there've been tons and tons of terrible stories coming from women and children who have been involved in polygamous marriages out west.

You're referring of course to the Mormons.

Okay, yes, if you're going to legalize polygamy, you're going to have to deal with all of the ugliness found in the all-the-wives-you-can carry culture that exists within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

However, it'd be pretty insane to equate what the Mormons do with what polyamorous (or if you prefer, would be polygamous) folks do in California or Connecticut or even, god help us, Alabama. I know people involved in poly relationships. I just left a relationship that was, technically at least, poly. To me, polyamory is no big thing, but what the Mormons do is just as foreign to me as it is to you.

So please, don't lump us all into the same category.
posted by Clay201 at 6:04 AM on March 15, 2005


Bevets: Are you suggesting that self interest is the root of all morality?

No, I'm suggesting you RTFA I linked to above and explain to me how your reasoning isn't glaringly circular. I know we're not supposed to feed the trolls, but you don't get to change the subject anytime anyone backs you into a rhetorical corner.

Then again, it makes sense, seeing as your original point ("If we let the gays marry, why not legalize bestiality"!?) is tantamount to a logical derail, anyway. Can you stay on point and discuss this issue instead of reciting talking-point derails you've lovingly crafted over at FARK for chrissakes?

I'm not going rehash all of Corvino's arguments here (hence the links above), but, yes, his argument is ultimately couched in terms of morality. He's an ethicist, after all. The sort of morality that's compatible with a pluralistic, free and open democratic society that focuses on human flourishing and the maximization of happiness while respecting personal autonomy. In short, the sort of morality that, no doubt, is anathema to you because it doesn't reduce to some sort of divine commandment. Thus, I refuse to get pulled into the side-issue of metanormativity. This is a public policy issue. American citizens are being discriminated against and you and others are not only turning blind eyes but actively justifying and promoting this treatment.

The institution of marriage, like all social practices/institutions is a human invention. It was not handed down on golden tablets from on high. It was not deposited on Earth in the form of extra-terrestrial marital monoliths. It was devised by humans, modified over millennia. As a consequence, any appeal to "traditional" marriage is either totally ignorant of the institution's history or willfully obtuse. If you want to be accurate (as others have observed, above) a return to "traditional" marriage (or safeguarding "traditional" marriage from wild-eyed, sheep-shaggin' reformists, take your pick) would involve a return to treating women like chattel. Chattel, not cattle. Look it up. Actually, I know just the book you can look it up in, and I'm fairly sure you have a copy lying around. It's the one that says, ethically speaking, it's more important to not covet your neighbor's slave than to not own any slaves in the first place. The one that goes on at length about (e.g.,) Solomon's 700 wives, 300 concubines, and so forth with nary a word of condemnation.

What is your reasonable (and reasoned) moral objection to consensual homosexual activity between two adults? If you can't answer that question without resorting to: (A) "ooh, icky!" or (B) "it's condemned by my particular reading of these particular passages of these particular religious texts," then I'm afraid there's not much you'll be able to contribute to a public policy discussion on gay marriage. Short of muddying the waters and confusing the issue, that is, which you've done quite well.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:13 AM on March 15, 2005


bevets:

You are making the assumption that homosexuality is genetically determined -- Do you have empirical data to support this assumption?

Is heterosexuality genetically determined? Could you provide empirical evidence to support a contention that it is?

Your question is irrelevant because sotonohito was (I think) merely advocating the freedom of any person to marry any other person. I didn't see any such assumption, and whether or not homosexuality is genetically determined has no relevance to a discussion of legal freedoms. You seem to be suggesting that people ought only to be allowed to marry someone they're attracted to, which is questionable.

Suppose it was determined that male sexual aggression is genetically determined -- Should rapists be punished (discriminated against) for following their genes?

Rape is illegal. It violates a person's right to their own self, as self-possessed property, and their rights of liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Even if someone could not stop themself from raping someone, don't they represent a threat to other people? It seems like you're suggesting that threats to society should only be dealt with if they can stop themselves by self-will; so you're saying that we should only punish rapists who are sufficiently self-controlled not to commit the crime in the first place?
posted by clockzero at 6:18 AM on March 15, 2005


I need a Smite button on my keyboard.

Bevets, until you respond to satonohito's question, nothing you say has any merit.

Thankfully I live in a somewhat more civilized country, where our politicians have the courage to stand in front of the country, and defend the rights of me and many of my friends.

There is no good reason to deny marriage to homosexuals. Not one. Not on legal grounds; on legal grounds discrimination is against the law, and your constitution. Amending constitutions to specifically deny one group of people something that everyone else gets renders that constitution no more useful, legally speaking, than a piece of toilet paper. Not on moral grounds; religiously defined morality has no place in the legislative chambers or courtrooms of any civilized country.

How does my wanting to live with someone of the same sex, who I love with all my heart, and take advantage of the same rights and responsibilities under the law that you take for granted possibly invalidate your desire to do so with someone of the opposite sex?

Grow up, the lot of you. Satonohito said it best: the arguments against gay marriage are, but for the specific male-male/female-female terms used, precisely the same as those against interracial marriage. The moral position implied is, to be charitable, distasteful.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:51 AM on March 15, 2005


Don't believe gay marriage should be legalized?

Don't have one.

I did (previously FPP'd), and I can assure you, there were no sheep or Mormons involved -- just two people who have been together for over a decade, vowing to love one another in the presence of their families and friends. Shocking!

Much of the "discussion" around this "issue" is a smokescreen to obscure the flagrant use of it by the opportunists and pathetic closet cases in this administration to divide and conquer a public that is naturally growing more tolerant as more and more gay people stop lying about their lives.
posted by digaman at 7:38 AM on March 15, 2005


There are over 4,800 codes in California state laws that treat people differently based on their marital status.
and There are another 1,138 federal rights that only marriage grants. --from Marriage Equality CA


Wow. That sounds like state endorsed discrimination against single people.

I think people (all people) who want to get married should be allowed to get married.

But it would be nice if single people were granted the same rights and tax advantages, etc as married people.

posted by Fuzzy Monster at 7:40 AM on March 15, 2005


PIB and homosexuality have traditionally been condemned.

actually, two-thirds of "PIB" have not been all that condemned. Polygamy has often been the norm, especially in war torn societies when there were fewer men than women, and women were generally not allowed to support themselves. As some have said, most heroes of the bible had multiple wives.

And even incest has only been mildly condemned or 'discouraged', not considered a real abomination. Again, plenty of children of the bible are the results of incestuous pregnancies, and these are not seen as particularly terrible - maybe a little embarrassing (ie, the story of Lot raping his daughters is turned around into his having been seduced by them when he was drunk! yeah right...) but still acceptable as the sort of thing that happens from time to time.

As Elim has pointed out, marriage used to be entirely about property. This whole "marry for love" thing is kinda new. That's why gay marriage is a new concept. When marriage is between a man and a woman, the father sells his daughter to the new son in law - or "gives her away". But between two men, who's owning who? It's too confusing! It's like an equal partnership or something! Wouldn't want those hets to get the idea their partnership is equal, too...
posted by mdn at 8:29 AM on March 15, 2005


"They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras."

This is the funniest thing I've heard all day. Thanks!
posted by agregoli at 9:02 AM on March 15, 2005


I teach with a guy who is very Christian, and very quick to let those around him know how great it is to be in a Christian marriage with two Christian sons and a Christian daughter and that he's raising them with Christian values.

I teach his older son--the kid is a complete asshole.

Anecdotal, I realize, but it's clear that conventional couples turn out mistakes all the time. People I know who were raised by gay parents seem to suffer the exact same rate of parenting failure.
posted by bardic at 9:09 AM on March 15, 2005


"They are much more sexually promiscuous. They have anonymous sex, gay bathhouses and gay mardi-gras."

I can only assume you know this from personal experience.
posted by bardic at 9:15 AM on March 15, 2005


If gay men are more promiscuous than straight men, it's only because they can be. At any given moment there's more men (straight or gay) looking to get laid than women, and men of whatever persuasion rarely turn down sex.
posted by jonmc at 9:26 AM on March 15, 2005


What makes me so happy is that the more the conservatives make a big issue about homosexual marriage, the more it becomes discourse in society and the more likely it is to be supported by the masses. Like anything else, attention is the blinding spotlight that melts away false facts and brings Truth to the forefront.

Keep hating homosexual marriage you conservatives. You are digging yourslf in a hole the more you make an issue of it.
posted by Dantien at 9:34 AM on March 15, 2005


Of course, adopting daylight-savings time didn't stand a chance of passing...again.

Thorzdad, as one who lives where DST is used, I gotta say you really don't want it.

As far as gay marriage goes, I think that any sensible reading of the US constitution would conclude that the spirit of the law demands equality in this area. Rallying against gay marriage is to rally against the constitution.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:50 AM on March 15, 2005




On "Real Time With Bill Maher" last week, Barney Frank said it well: " I try very hard to be a responsible citizen and as a gay man I try very hard to keep track of the marriages I have destroyed, and there really aren't that many. I may have some secret admirers out there and I may have wreaked more havoc than I realize, but they haven't called."
posted by ericb at 10:59 AM on March 15, 2005


So, at what point do we create a database with all the sane arguments and then just post links to whatever answer fits the circumstances? Bevets does not argue he just posts a bunch of derailing questions that people feel they must address.

This would have been a much shorter thread without him
posted by edgeways at 11:46 AM on March 15, 2005


bevets

It has already been done in other cultures -- the question is why would we want to make the concept meaningless in our culture?

This question doesn't mean anything. Since when does our culture's definition of something exist in a vacuum? If the entire world had accepted that the world was round, would the American definition still be valid if we insisted it didn't because some bible scholars said it wasn't? Or even better, whether the whole world did or not, what difference does it make to the definition of the world whether we accept its basic truths? Marraige exists outside American boundaries and the argument that American legislation can change it is patently ridiculous.

and also:


Interesting that you would bring up morality -- Are you suggesting that there are moral standards which apply to everyone?


Yes, indeed. I believe the following quote does a good job of summing them up:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness."
posted by shmegegge at 12:28 PM on March 15, 2005


clockzero: You assume correctly. The genetic basis, or lack thereof, for homosexuality is simply a dodge. He's playing "so, you say that gay = black?" No, I don't. I say homosexual marriage = interracial marriage. Genetic basis doesn't enter into the equation. There is no genetic basis for my upcoming marriage to my fiencee, but in 1952 my marriage would have been illegal, and people like bevets would be defending the ban on interracial marriages.

More on topic here. One other thing that bothers me is the traditional conservative ranting about "activist judges". The judge did not simply randomly decide that homosexual marriage was a good thing. He ruled that when the California Constitution says "equal rights for all" it really meant *all* not "people we like". Conservatives are good at talking the game of freedom and justice, but when a judge actually starts applying the nice sounding "with liberty and justice for all" phrases to [insert favorite group conservatives hate here] suddenly its "judicial activism". I think its a matter of "constitutional activism". Its not the poor judge, its those foul and devious constitutions....
posted by sotonohito at 1:59 PM on March 15, 2005


> Funny how not one conservative said that about the new "faith-based funding" or
> about new proscriptions on abortion access all over the country or new federal
> programs pushing marriage stability ...

Well, DUH! When things are going our way then we get to be the progressives and press ahead with all possible speed, and it's up to you to be the reactionaries and try to slam on the brakes.
posted by jfuller at 2:51 PM on March 15, 2005


sotonohito: "but in 1952 my marriage would have been illegal, and people like bevets would be defending the ban on interracial marriages."

Actually, depending on the state, it could've been illegal as late as 1968, when Loving v. Virginia was decided. Astonishing, isn't it?

(Congratulations and best wishes to you and your fiancée, btw.)
posted by vetiver at 3:33 PM on March 15, 2005


Arnold's not following his party line: Appearing last night on MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, the governor was asked if he would “move to try to change the Constitution” should the California Supreme Court rule that the state can no longer deny marriage to same-sex couples; he replied, “No, absolutely not.”

“The Governor’s unequivocal opposition to putting discrimination in the Constitution reflects the values of most Americans,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese. “We commend the Governor for ensuring that the Constitution enshrines freedom and fairness. It’s clear that the American appetite for equality knows no partisan boundaries.”
posted by amberglow at 6:26 PM on March 15, 2005


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