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Author Topic: Same-Sex Marriage  (Read 8149 times)

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Offline JudeTopic starter

Same-Sex Marriage
« on: December 14, 2009, 02:09:37 PM »
This is a hot topic for debate across the country, but I think in both cases those who are for and against have points in their favor.  For a few examples...

Against Same-Sex Marriage
- Marriage is essentially a religious institution
- Government has no right to dictate anything religious to the public
- It is essentially adding legitimacy and recognition to an action a good portion (nearly half) of the populous views as immoral

Pro Same-Sex Marriage
- Under the current system same-sex couples have fewer rights and privileges than straight couples
- There are religious institutions which are not against same-sex marriage; who's right to freedom of religion should prevail?
- Civil Unions typically are not legally equal to marriage.

Any arguments about same-sex couples being unfit parents or otherwise detrimental to society are completely bunk.  Studies have shown again and again that same-sex parents are as good, if not better, than straight couples because they choose to become a parent and cannot have the situation forced on them by birth control failure or any other sort of accident.  There is no scientific data to show that children raised by a same-sex couple are more likely to be homosexual either; all of these arguments are simply scientifically unsound.

I would contend, however, that the problem with same-sex marriage isn't the same-sex part, but the marriage part.  If Marriage is a religious institution like many claim, why does our government recognize it at all?  Why should adults who choose to live together romantically of a certain sexual orientation given preference over those of different orientations?  What if two friends want to live together; shouldn't have be given the same rights and privileges as a married couple if they're willing to make a commitment to be responsible for each other?

I don't believe romantic involvement should be the magic element that suddenly qualifies you to spend your life with someone.  There have been people who have enjoyed platonic relationships void of sexuality instead throughout their lives, if we're going to support committed relationships, why do they have to be sexual relationships?  And if the issue isn't giving benefits to two people who choose to live together and is all about families, then why give benefits to heterosexual couples who live together and choose to not have children?

I think the only fair solution to our problem is to get religion out of the government entirely.  Allow anyone to enter a civil union with or without romantic inclinations, regardless of sexual orientation, or their lifestyle.  Give it the same legal force that marriage currently has now.  And if you want to give families support, do it directly like how you get tax breaks for having dependents.

I know there will be Christians who are unhappy with religion being separated from secular power, homosexuals who still want same-sex marriage to be recognized even if this was done--and I'm most curious of all to hear from those people.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2009, 02:22:19 PM »
Marriage is not a religious institution its secular, the union of two persons under the law (or more persons under the law). Must I note even in the Bible under the old laws the rules were there to determine property and ownership of the woman and the religious aspects were generally a seperate matter above the marriage contract.

Offline Serephino

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2009, 08:16:33 PM »
I'm all for getting religion out of the government.  And as for people who argue it's a religious thing, I'm Pagan, and see nothing wrong with same sex marriage.  So why can't Pagans have a legal same sex handfasting?  It would be a religious ceremony sanctified by whatever gods the couple believed in.  I'll tell you why.  Christians believe that they're the only ones that matter.  They don't want any other religion to have a say.  They think they're Bible is absolute law and the whole world must follow it.

Though let me make myself clear.  I don't dislike all Christian people.  I like open minded Christians just fine.  It's the biggoted, Bible thumping, closed minded blow hards that use their God liked a club to beat people over the head with that I think need to be taken out to a field and shot.  In other words... extremists.

Regardless, marriage has been made into a legal contract.  If I were to be married to a woman, and gods forbid something happened to me, my wife would be next of kin.  She would speak for me.  If we had kids and I died the kids would be hers.  A house, a car, pretty much anything I owned she would have claim to.

Same situation, but with my boyfriend.  Some progress has been made I know, but if I died he's screwed.  My mother could easily come in and take everything, leaving him with nothing.  If we had kids and they were mine, they could be taken from him. 

Tax laws, property laws, parental rights, all government things, and all affected by marriage.  If you want a divorce, you don't go through the church, you have to hire lawyers and sign legal documents.  What each spouse is entitled to is written into state law.  Hell, you don't even have to be a religious official to perform a legal ceremony.  One of my cousins was married by the captain of a cruise ship.  It's very much a legal, government recognized thing.  If Christians feel it is against God, then they can remain heterosexuals.  Those who don't believe in their God have just as much right to have all the same benefits.   

Offline Brandon

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2009, 08:46:39 PM »
I made a thread similar to this awhile back which is found here: http://elliquiy.com/forums/index.php?topic=23875.0

Basically the idea I had at the time was to abolish marriage from the law and redefine all "marriages" as civil unions. This would force civil unions to be raised to a point where they are equal to the current status of marriage. It would allow the government to keep better separation of church and state. Finally, it would allow marriage to be kept as a purely religious ceremony

Offline MercyfulFate

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2009, 02:07:51 PM »
There's no reason it shouldn't be legal.

Offline Talia

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2009, 05:57:09 PM »
There's no reason it shouldn't be legal.

Absolutely Agree!

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2009, 06:04:24 PM »
Absolutely Agree!

Agreed, but my thought is that it would be more effective to do this in a more subtle manner by getting legal unions as a starting point. I know a lot of SS Marriage supporters are against it BUT it has the benefit of getting the foot in the door AND by taking things in a lower profile you slide in and start changes within the system slowly.

Sorry if that makes me seem a heel, but I think it would be more practical and has a lesser risk of invoking backlashes.

Truthfully the less I have to see of  the conservative loonies the happier I am. :D

Offline Hemingway

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2009, 07:07:45 PM »
Religious people already pick and choose which parts of their respective sacred texts' commandments they obey, and which ones they ignore. Never mind that not all religious people seem to even agree. It seems to me that from a purely logical point of view, using religion as an argument has no validity whatsoever, not even in the context of marriage as a religious institution. I realize that may be going a bit too far, though, but in that case, I don't think religious marriage should be anything but a ceremony, with no benefits in and of it self, and no legal bearing.

Offline JudeTopic starter

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2009, 07:31:40 PM »
Religious people feel that the institution of marriage is sacred.  It's considered a sacrament.  And the whole reason why that opinion carries weight is because the majority of the country is Christian and by far the majority opinion in Christianity feels that way.  This is a Democratic Republic, the issue here isn't the Republic part but the Democratic part.  Republics have constitutions that must be respected over even the opinion of the majority.  Equal protection under the law, equal rights, and separation of church and state are all important parts of our constitution that are being ignored by our current marriage rules.

Lets face it, what you call the legal union between two people isn't at all relevant.  Giving marriage back to the religious and then coming up with civil unions for everyone instead (and having government no longer recognize marriage in any way) is the only proper solution.  The problem now is that there are two different institutions which have different values placed on them.

Homosexuals don't have a right to hijack the idea of marriage in legal form anymore than Christians do; if an idea is purely subjective and varies from person to person based on their religious ideas, the law should not take sides in determining who's definition wins out.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2009, 07:53:43 PM »
The thing that makes me angriest about this whole issue is the political establishment on both sides are using this to hijack their respective parties and standing in the government.

I want a party to consider more important issues (sorry..that sounds callous) like heath care, budgets, social security and defense. Each side is equally complicit in using this as way of getting what they want. And the people who are most effected by this, the couples, are being pushed aside in the conflict sometimes.

Like the poor woman whose partner was dying in a hospital in a state that didn't recognize their marriage. Something needs to be done to consolidate partner's rights.  Hence my earlier comment of starting with civil unions and working from there.

I cannot begin to imagine what that poor woman suffered as her partner died and she wasn't allowed to be with her in her final hours.

Offline Sasha

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2009, 01:13:05 AM »


 To me the term "marriage" means that a man and a woman have went before God through the means of a ceremony (declared publically ) as a joining of one man and a woman ( to become one flesh) ..thus they become one ..no longer seen as individuals so to speak but become one entity.

Obviously I am Christian ..maybe not the best example of one on the planet. Suppose we can say he is still working on me ..or I am sitting on the fence ..or whatever I think the point is irrelevant .

 I personally do not believe in same sex marriage. Do I have any resentment to those that perfer the same sex , obviously no. Do I think they are going to hell ..that is not for me to judge. It is not a cop out , it is the truth ...everyone's walk with God is there own. Therefore I will let him do the judging.

 Common Law marriages between a man and a woman are no longer recognized either by government and they do not hold any weight in many realms either. Insurance , Social Security, transfer of property upon death unless spelled out in a will. I believe this was taken out in the early 90's ..only for the fact that I managed to qualify for one and though never having been married had to get a divorce.

 
Quote
Religious people already pick and choose which parts of their respective sacred texts' commandments they obey, and which ones they ignore

  This is true ..unfortunately . Then again the commandments were not so much rules set down that if followed would gain one access to the kingdom of heaven but more to force people to realize that they can not obey the "law" and therefore are in need of God's mercy and grace. 


 Personally I see no problem with a civil union , partnership or whatever other name you wish to call it being recognized. To me it is wrong that the government ..puts a lower classification on them and for that matter does not recognize common law marriages either. However , I think the monetary complications is more the issue. Just looking at the impact of the Taxation, Govt. Pension  and the Social Security System in the United States alone not that our national debt needs any help getting larger or anything.

 Anyways ...thought the original posting was well thought out. I will apologize in advance if I have offended anyone .

Offline Zeitgeist

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2009, 08:30:46 AM »
Why not get government completely out of the business of marriage?

Everyone files their taxes individually, everyone pays their health insurance as individuals, one or the other carries any children involved on their policy. A living will can deal with hospital visitations. Local governments already handle child custody/support irregardless of marital status. Churches could and would still marry people, the ceremony being only an understanding between the couple and the church, and nothing more. Handfastings could also happen, there just is no need for any legal recognition as no rights/responsibilities come with it.

That way no one is left out as no one is 'included'.

I may have missed something, but its likely not something either a living will couldn't handle, or defaulting to personal responsibility wouldn't make more sense.

Offline Dusky

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2009, 05:58:05 PM »
I am straight IRL and though I am baptised I have nothing much to do with church and religion. Marriage, for me, is to register a partnership. Not only before god/allah/insert deity of choice here but before the law. If you just go to a priest he may declare you married in the spiritual way but it won't do much legally without the papers. Infact most people I know skipped the church and just did it the official way.

So marriage in this case means to make sure that your partner has the same right a wife/husband would do in a heterosexual marriage and not being left standing in the rain becauses of formalities... and how can you deny a loving person such things? I respect that many people think it should not be because of the religious limitations they put on themselves (not wanting to discuss believes now), but in the official meaning this should mean no big thing. Just my two cents.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2009, 06:14:47 PM »
To me it seems BOTH sides are hung up on a word. Marriage. In fact the priorities should be the same legal rights and entitlements as hetro couples. Medical coverage, legal issues and such.

If I was an activist pushing for the issue. LEGAL rights and protections. Things that the couples NEED adn deserve for equal recognition.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2009, 06:28:49 PM »
 Unfortunately 'Marriage' is stuck on a Christian co-notation. Christianity isn't the only religion out there and should not be the sole judge if what is a marriage. Personally I think marriage should have no legal status at all. It shouldn't give any benefits, privileges or perks under the law. Unless you allow other religions to use their definition of marriage too and just have the term 'married' mean a civil union that is sanctified by a religion.

 The fact that only the Christian model of 'marriage' is used could be seen as favoring one religion over another.

Offline kylie

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Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2009, 06:37:34 PM »
http://www.gallup.com/poll/118378/majority-americans-continue-oppose-gay-marriage.aspx
Check out the generation gaps, and give it some time...?  8-)

Quote from: Zamdrist of Zeitgeist
Why not get government completely out of the business of marriage?

Everyone files their taxes individually, everyone pays their health insurance as individuals, one or the other carries any children involved on their policy. A living will can deal with hospital visitations. Local governments already handle child custody/support irregardless of marital status. Churches could and would still marry people, the ceremony being only an understanding between the couple and the church, and nothing more. Handfastings could also happen, there just is no need for any legal recognition as no rights/responsibilities come with it.

That way no one is left out as no one is 'included'.

I may have missed something, but its likely not something either a living will couldn't handle, or defaulting to personal responsibility wouldn't make more sense.
     I don't buy into a number of your politics posts, but for once we agree on something: The government is definitely "in business."  To read it another way, why not offer the same form of tax breaks, benefits, medical visitation and decision etc. to individuals.  Why privilege couples at all?  If Foucault is correct, it goes back to at least the Industrial Revolution and Malthusian theory of population control and economization.  Making heterosexual families the norm was thought to be the best way to build a strong labor force, so those were given incentives while the "homosexual" was invented as a category for punishment.  I'm guessing it is numerically easier for government to count, track, and redirect (through incentives) the finances of people grouped under households.  This also encourages more people to police each other, or at least to pick up the tab -- as in when spouses may be garnished for the other's debts. 

     Now, I don't think those are necessarily good things.  However, as I understand history, appeals to individual responsibility generally leave the most vulnerable people hanging.  When all central support is dropped, then the most organized political groups with the longest histories in power retain a better relative position against the others.  Those who can afford to bus whole fundamentalist campaigns from Utah to California, would remain organized and continue to game the system whether they have marriage breaks or not.  They would reinvest all they have stored up from all the years that they have had the advantage.  They would continue to deploy that wealth as they have historically: In support of churches and commentators who speak ill of homosexuality; in campaigns to ban representations of same-sex relationships (not to mention bdsm etc.) from the public arts budget; in support for programs that require "a man and a woman" for access or funding... 

     So, if you say no government money for anyone, then wouldn't the gay side be left hanging by a thinner thread?  If it were all truly to be about offering equal access to resources, then we might need another class of affirmative action policy.  Someone will probably mention that some gays make good money now...  That doesn't speak to the fact that as a whole, the lack of positive economic support (including notably, marriage benefits) has installed them as a relative underclass.  It has made the fewer workaholic gays and fashion designers the most publicly accepted, "good" ones.  As for me...  I would also like to see a different system of opportunities -- with perqs for individuals, as well as couples.  I'm just skeptical that a policy of no breaks for anyone is going to seriously help the people who for generations, have been getting marginalized.  Every one (or for this, every couple) for themselves only brings relative equality where there is a critical mass of organization among the new movement apart from public support, or better: where resources are distributed to help people to proceed and expect stability with some dignity.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2009, 06:41:27 PM by kylie »

Offline Zeitgeist

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #16 on: December 16, 2009, 09:50:34 PM »
     I don't buy into a number of your politics posts, but for once we agree on something: The government is definitely "in business."  To read it another way, why not offer the same form of tax breaks, benefits, medical visitation and decision etc. to individuals.  Why privilege couples at all? 

Heh ;) Well the honest truth is, I'm more libertarian than anything else, I'm certainly not comfortable with the label of 'Republican'. But I digress. Let's ask ourselves, really, what are these untold riches of so-called marriage benefits? I was married, and I'm trying to recall...

Joint Filing/Marriage Tax Break - I say instead everyone files separate irregardless.
Family Health Care premium plan - Again, I say do away with that and everyone buys the single plan, if children are involved, one or the other carries the child or children as dependents.
Hospital Visitations/End-of-life decisions - Living Will. Don't have one, get one. Don't get one, your fault, no one elses.

What other fabulous benefits of being married are there? I in fact remember being rather miserable to tell you the truth! ;)

Or, is it more about - John and Mary or John and John are the same so you better just get used to it!.

Honestly, I don't really have a bone in the fight. And I should probably stay out of this one. Like a moth to a flame  :-\

Oh I forgot one, adoption - Individuals can adopt or foster children today, so if a same-sex couple wants to adopt, great. Only one gets legal custody, the other is listed as legal guardian and the living will ensures custody is transferred to the other in case of death.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2009, 09:56:07 PM by Zamdrist of Zeitgeist »

Offline Kotah

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2009, 10:54:49 PM »
To deny anything against a specific group of people 'just cause' is wrong.

*whiney voice*
but...but... they are two men! they can't get married!

Bull shit. They have every right to do the exact same thing that everyone else is able to do.

E.V.E.R.Y R.I.G.H.T

It's called human rights. Remember when it wasn't lawfully for a mixed racial couple to attend a movie together? Remember when it wasn't legal for women to vote? Most of the same excuses they are using to keep marriage in the woman-man category are the same excuses that they were using then.

Why would a woman want to vote? She has more important things to take care of.
Why would a homosexual want to get married? It's a religious thing.
Mixed racial couples are a perversion! Think of the children!
Homosexuality is a perversion! Think of the children!

Discouraging a couple from an event simply because of their sexual preferences is defiant of human rights. If they are going to allow anyone to do it, they have to allow everyone to do it.

It's called playing fair. Yeah, I know. "Life isn't fair". Whatever. That is absolutely no excuse whatsoever. It's even more of a reason to allow it.

Offline Mathim

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #18 on: December 17, 2009, 01:46:55 PM »
No human being on this earth will ever have true freedom until religion in all its perverse forms is utterly and completely eradicated. There, I said it.

Offline Farmboy

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2009, 02:15:44 PM »
Why not get government completely out of the business of marriage?

Everyone files their taxes individually, everyone pays their health insurance as individuals, one or the other carries any children involved on their policy. A living will can deal with hospital visitations. Local governments already handle child custody/support irregardless of marital status. Churches could and would still marry people, the ceremony being only an understanding between the couple and the church, and nothing more. Handfastings could also happen, there just is no need for any legal recognition as no rights/responsibilities come with it.

That way no one is left out as no one is 'included'.

I may have missed something, but its likely not something either a living will couldn't handle, or defaulting to personal responsibility wouldn't make more sense.

I recently had the misfortune of camping out in the Intensive Care waiting room with many other families in similar straits. I can tell you simply that your idealism is something I can agree with on paper, but that's not how it works. There always comes a point when someone has to make a decision that is not spelled out in a living will. And this is when marriage has a legal function. A woman who has been living as a life partner with another woman for 40 years does not have any legal basis to make that decision, while a brother or sister does. And lacking any siblings or children, the state still does not recognize her right to make the decision.

When someone dies, there is no federal tax on money that was jointly owned with their husband or wife. However, if they are domestic partners, the federal government does not accept that, and takes as much as HALF the property value. That is robbery, but it is the IRS, so it's the law! Think about what that would be like. You work together with your life partner for 30 years to pay off a mortgage, then they die and the federal government comes in and says your $200,000 home is inheritence and you must pay about $80,000. But it's yours! And the only reason this doesn't happen to the people next door is because they are straight and you are gay. I just don't see why this isn't a matter for the Supreme Court. It is so obviously a violation of basic rights.

This is why marriage is not merely liturgical. At times that are most crucial, marriage turns out to have enormous game-changing implications. It is far simpler to just let them marry and be done with it. If we try to make special case laws just for gay people that more or less duplicate the laws for straights, then each and every condition will have to be spelled out. This only increases beaurocracy, and does nothing to trim the size of government. But if we just say that gays can marry, there is no need to add other special case laws.

I would also point out that it is highly idealistic to think we can change all those laws you mentioned, instead of just repealing the DoM Act. Congress is incapable of doing anything without arguing, and the result of all the negotiating and compromises you would have to make would simply produce a totally different set of laws than the ones you tried to make. The trick is to find one thing to change at a time, and stay focussed. That is why we are simply saying, let gays marry.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 02:27:34 PM by Aislin »

Offline Farmboy

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2009, 02:37:11 PM »
No human being on this earth will ever have true freedom until religion in all its perverse forms is utterly and completely eradicated. There, I said it.

Amen! hahaha

But it will never happen. People don't want to make individual judgements on a case-by-case basis. It is easier to just decide to do things the way their parents did them and call it tradition. It is also easy to justify war by pointing at cultural and racial differences. Human behavior is like water, it takes the path of least resistance, and usually that means religion. They made up God so they would be able to trump any logical argument. With the vast majority of people participating in this mental weakness, we aren't going to see it go away, ever. So, work on your own psychology and carborundum non illegitimus.

Offline Mathim

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2009, 03:08:06 PM »
I also want to add that the government will never separate church and state (at least when it comes to marriage) because they've started making adultery illegal in some places, hence the taint of religion on  even government-sanctioned marriages is deep in the poisoned blood of the whole thing.

Offline Brandon

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #22 on: December 17, 2009, 06:19:55 PM »
No human being on this earth will ever have true freedom until religion in all its perverse forms is utterly and completely eradicated. There, I said it.

Sorry man but I disagree. Faith and by extension religion is a very important aspect to a lot of peoples lives. It helps shape who we are. In my case, i was raised as a Roman Catholic and the teachings that I learned when I was a boy have translated into my morales as a man. I dont agree with everything the catholic church says is bad like masturbation, homosexuality, birth control or premarital sex but there's also things I do agree with like "You can disagree with someones lifestlye or choices but don't hate them for it" or most of the ten commandments.

Whats really needed is for religions to become more tolerant of people that don't agree with them. I think its ludicrous to suggest that some Pope at sometime didn't add things to the RC teachings but many people accept them as being written by Saint Peter himself. Its the stupid people that religion attracts and follows everything without question that's the problem, not religion in and of itself.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 11:35:22 PM by Waiting under the Mistletoe »

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #23 on: December 17, 2009, 07:20:19 PM »
No human being on this earth will ever have true freedom until religion in all its perverse forms is utterly and completely eradicated. There, I said it.

This is indeed the most ignorant and uncalled for statement someone has made in a long time, Mathim.  Congradulations on the honor.

Offline Serephino

Re: Same-Sex Marriage
« Reply #24 on: December 17, 2009, 07:39:10 PM »
Whats really needed is for religions to become more tolerant of people that dont agree with them. I think its ludicrous to suggest that some Pope at sometime didnt add things to the RC teachings but many people accept them as being written by Saint Peter himself. Its the stupid people that religion attracts and follows everything without question thats the problem, not religion in and of itself.

You said it.....  I myself take offense to anyone who calls religion itself a mental weakness, or someone who says all religion is bad.  There are many, many things I seriously dislike about Christianity, but even I have to admit there are a few good things.  As I said, I don't hate Christians, I just seriously dislike the stupid ones.  If a Christian person is open minded and doesn't preach to me about how Obama is the Anti-Christ, or I'm going to Hell for liking men, and/or being Pagan, then we'd get along just fine.

The problem is the fanatics; the people who can't see the forest for the trees.  Jesus Christ, the one that they supposedly all follow, taught love and tolerance.  But power corrupts and people started using the name of God to justify their means.  Sadly, the general population never questioned anyone claiming to be doing the work of God for way too long.  People need to start practicing what they preach.