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Gay Marriage - Just Say No !!!!
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January 15, 2010 - 8:27 pm
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The Conservative Case for Gay Marriage

Why same-sex marriage is an American value.

By Theodore B. Olson
NEWSWEEK
Published Jan 9, 2010
From the magazine issue dated Jan 18, 2010

Together with my good friend and occasional courtroom adversary David Boies, I am attempting to persuade a federal court to invalidate California's Proposition 8—the voter-approved measure that overturned California's constitutional right to marry a person of the same sex.

My involvement in this case has generated a certain degree of consternation among conservatives. How could a politically active, lifelong Republican, a veteran of the Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush administrations, challenge the "traditional" definition of marriage and press for an "activist" interpretation of the Constitution to create another "new" constitutional right?

My answer to this seeming conundrum rests on a lifetime of exposure to persons of different backgrounds, histories, viewpoints, and intrinsic characteristics, and on my rejection of what I see as superficially appealing but ultimately false perceptions about our Constitution and its protection of equality and fundamental rights.

Many of my fellow conservatives have an almost knee-jerk hostility toward gay marriage. This does not make sense, because same-sex unions promote the values conservatives prize. Marriage is one of the basic building blocks of our neighborhoods and our nation. At its best, it is a stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership. We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one's own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establishes a formal investment in the well-being of society. The fact that individuals who happen to be gay want to share in this vital social institution is evidence that conservative ideals enjoy widespread acceptance. Conservatives should celebrate this, rather than lament it.

Legalizing same-sex marriage would also be a recognition of basic American principles, and would represent the culmination of our nation's commitment to equal rights. It is, some have said, the last major civil-rights milestone yet to be surpassed in our two-century struggle to attain the goals we set for this nation at its formation.

This bedrock American principle of equality is central to the political and legal convictions of Republicans, Democrats, liberals, and conservatives alike. The dream that became America began with the revolutionary concept expressed in the Declaration of Independence in words that are among the most noble and elegant ever written: "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."

*snip*

The United States Supreme Court has repeatedly held that marriage is one of the most fundamental rights that we have as Americans under our Constitution. It is an expression of our desire to create a social partnership, to live and share life's joys and burdens with the person we love, and to form a lasting bond and a social identity. The Supreme Court has said that marriage is a part of the Constitution's protections of liberty, privacy, freedom of association, and spiritual identification. In short, the right to marry helps us to define ourselves and our place in a community. Without it, there can be no true equality under the law.

It is true that marriage in this nation traditionally has been regarded as a relationship exclusively between a man and a woman, and many of our nation's multiple religions define marriage in precisely those terms. But while the Supreme Court has always previously considered marriage in that context, the underlying rights and liberties that marriage embodies are not in any way confined to heterosexuals.

Marriage is a civil bond in this country as well as, in some (but hardly all) cases, a religious sacrament. It is a relationship recognized by governments as providing a privileged and respected status, entitled to the state's support and benefits. The California Supreme Court described marriage as a "union unreservedly approved and favored by the community." Where the state has accorded official sanction to a relationship and provided special benefits to those who enter into that relationship, our courts have insisted that withholding that status requires powerful justifications and may not be arbitrarily denied.

What, then, are the justifications for California's decision in Proposition 8 to withdraw access to the institution of marriage for some of its citizens on the basis of their sexual orientation? The reasons I have heard are not very persuasive.

The explanation mentioned most often is tradition. But simply because something has always been done a certain way does not mean that it must always remain that way. Otherwise we would still have segregated schools and debtors' prisons. Gays and lesbians have always been among us, forming a part of our society, and they have lived as couples in our neighborhoods and communities. For a long time, they have experienced discrimination and even persecution; but we, as a society, are starting to become more tolerant, accepting, and understanding. California and many other states have allowed gays and lesbians to form domestic partnerships (or civil unions) with most of the rights of married heterosexuals. Thus, gay and lesbian individuals are now permitted to live together in state-sanctioned relationships. It therefore seems anomalous to cite "tradition" as a justification for withholding the status of marriage and thus to continue to label those relationships as less worthy, less sanctioned, or less legitimate.

The second argument I often hear is that traditional marriage furthers the state's interest in procreation—and that opening marriage to same-sex couples would dilute, diminish, and devalue this goal. But that is plainly not the case. Preventing lesbians and gays from marrying does not cause more heterosexuals to marry and conceive more children. Likewise, allowing gays and lesbians to marry someone of the same sex will not discourage heterosexuals from marrying a person of the opposite sex. How, then, would allowing same-sex marriages reduce the number of children that heterosexual couples conceive?

This procreation argument cannot be taken seriously. We do not inquire whether heterosexual couples intend to bear children, or have the capacity to have children, before we allow them to marry. We permit marriage by the elderly, by prison inmates, and by persons who have no intention of having children. What's more, it is pernicious to think marriage should be limited to heterosexuals because of the state's desire to promote procreation. We would surely not accept as constitutional a ban on marriage if a state were to decide, as China has done, to discourage procreation.

Another argument, vaguer and even less persuasive, is that gay marriage somehow does harm to heterosexual marriage. I have yet to meet anyone who can explain to me what this means. In what way would allowing same-sex partners to marry diminish the marriages of heterosexual couples? Tellingly, when the judge in our case asked our opponent to identify the ways in which same-sex marriage would harm heterosexual marriage, to his credit he answered honestly: he could not think of any.

The simple fact is that there is no good reason why we should deny marriage to same-sex partners. On the other hand, there are many reasons why we should formally recognize these relationships and embrace the rights of gays and lesbians to marry and become full and equal members of our society.

No matter what you think of homosexuality, it is a fact that gays and lesbians are members of our families, clubs, and workplaces. They are our doctors, our teachers, our soldiers (whether we admit it or not), and our friends. They yearn for acceptance, stable relationships, and success in their lives, just like the rest of us.

Conservatives and liberals alike need to come together on principles that surely unite us. Certainly, we can agree on the value of strong families, lasting domestic relationships, and communities populated by persons with recognized and sanctioned bonds to one another. Confining some of our neighbors and friends who share these same values to an outlaw or second-class status undermines their sense of belonging and weakens their ties with the rest of us and what should be our common aspirations. Even those whose religious convictions preclude endorsement of what they may perceive as an unacceptable "lifestyle" should recognize that disapproval should not warrant stigmatization and unequal treatment.

FULL ARTICLE

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Dark-Samus
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January 16, 2010 - 12:45 pm
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Amercian value?

This is about people's lives not a damn country.

Truth doesn´t control you, you control it...

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rath
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January 16, 2010 - 6:15 pm
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"Ninor" wrote: Hey G2, you know you liiiiiiiiike being in here!!!! j/k Laugh 😉

On a serious note ... I don't see what the problem is, Gay Marriage is legal here in Canada (Ontario). 😛

Que Monty Python ...

*I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay
I sleep all night and I work all day
He's a lumberjack and he's okay
He sleeps all night and he works all day

I cut down trees, I eat my lunch
I go to the lavat'ry
On Wednesdays I go shopping
And have buttered scones for tea
He cuts down trees...
He's a lumberjack...

I cut down trees, I skip and jump
I love to press wild flow'rs
I put on women's clothing
And hang around in bars
He cuts down trees...
He's a lumberjack...

I cut down trees, I wear high heels
Suspendies and a bra
I wish I'd been a girlie
Just like my dear papa
He cuts down trees...
He's a lumberjack...*

😮 😯 😕 Laugh Laugh Laugh

Blackadder -- Rowan Atkinson, Quotes.

EB: "What is your name, boy ?"
Boy: "Kate."
EB: "Kate, that's an unusual name for a boy."
Boy: "It's short for ... Bob."

- Kate, trying to pass as a boy, BA2

I've no desire to hang around with a bunch of upper-class delinquents, do twenty minutes' work and then spend the rest of the day loafing about in Paris drinking gallons of champagne and having dozens of moist, pink, highly experienced French peasant girls galloping up and down my ..... hang on.

"A man may fight for many things: his country, his principles, his friends, the glistening tear on the cheek of a golden child. But personally, I'd mudwrestle my own mother for a ton of cash, an amusing clock and a stack of French porn."

"As the good Lord says, love thy fellow man as you love yourself, unless they are Turks, then kill the bastards"
- King Richard IV, leaving for a Crusade, BA1

Nursie:
"You almost were a boy, my little cherry pip.."
Queenie:
"What?"
Nursie:
"Yeah, out you popped out of you mummy's tumkin and everyone shouted, 'It's a boy! It's a boy!', then somebody said, 'but he doesn't have a winkle.' Then, I said, 'A boy without a winkle? God be praised it's a miracle: a boy without a winkle!' And then, Sir Thomas Moore pointed out that a boy without a winkle is a girl. And everyone was really disappointed.."

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greeney2
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January 16, 2010 - 6:49 pm
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I'm always amazed that on a website concerned with Constitutional Rights, that the conversation just stays with the arguements that do not address the real issue before` the courts. The fact 2 conflicting Rights are in question, The Gay arguement of all the good reasons for allowing Gay marriage, vs the inherit Right of the Criteria for voting in a California Constitutional Ammendment.

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Dark-Samus
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January 17, 2010 - 4:14 pm
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But like Mr BV said, how in the name of all the small amount of goodness in this world, does it affect anyone?

The only reason they want to stop things like this or other minorities is because of pure hate, nothing else.

Truth doesn´t control you, you control it...

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greeney2
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January 17, 2010 - 8:35 pm
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If it was due to hate, than civil unions would have never been allowed either.

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Dark-Samus
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January 17, 2010 - 10:13 pm
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Well it is allowed because it is one of the basic rights for people to have freedom of speech isn't it?
But if there wasn't anything like that, I bet most wouldn't even know what a gay person is.

Truth doesn´t control you, you control it...

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rath
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January 21, 2010 - 10:04 am
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"SouthwestRanger" wrote: The Idea of Gay Marriage is stupid, pathetic, and moronic....

I'm glad the Measure was defeated in the NJ Senate !

Thank You Jesus !

🙄 🙄 🙄

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=2555

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mael
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January 22, 2010 - 11:57 am
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My chief objection to 'gay marriage' is the terminology.

It must be named something other than 'marriage.'

'Civil union?' I have no problem with that.

Same basic rights as married people? That's also OK.

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Lashmar
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January 22, 2010 - 12:42 pm
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Personally I don't care what it's called, it's the same thing at the end of the day. They want it all ways, they want to be treated as if they're special and normal at the same time. Keep your Civil Union and keep quite about marriage. Marriage is a religious thing, if the church doesn’t want to marry Queers then it’s not up to anyone else to make them.

Is there any legal difference between Marriage and Civil Union? I don’t think there is but I’m not sure. If there is no difference then I think the queers are out of line on this subject.

At the end of the day; being queer goes against the religious beliefs…you wouldn’t make a Jew eat bacon (mainly because most of them eat it any way Laugh ) so why are they trying to make the Church marry them? Answer…arrogance.

If Civil Union and Marriage give you the same legal right then there is no need for this argument. 🙄

Read between the lies

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