Thank God for civil rights!
NPR BREAKING NEWS:
Reports: California's Ban On Same-Sex Marriages Ruled Unconstitutional
A federal judge in San Francisco has overturned Proposition 8 in a landmark case that could eventually land before the U.S. Supreme Court. Two gay couples sued, claiming the voter-approved ban violated their civil rights.
More at NPR.org:
This battle, unfortunately, is not over. It will eventually work its way up to the Supreme Court. And I think we all know which side of the ideological spectrum they are leaning toward these days.
I go by a simple rule for these controversial issues. If another person's behavior has no measurable impact on me, then it should be allowed. That's "Civil Rights 101."
I agree which is why I think all drug laws and firearms laws should be repealed. pure liberty. unfortunately the left in this country wants to take all of your money, your weapons and your privacy while the right wants to regulate you spiritually, morally and in your bedroom.
we need more Thomas Jeffersons. and some Ron Pauls wouldnt hurt.
first of all, i haven't read any of the other posts here other than the first one, so i maybe asking for trouble. however, if you want my honest opinion about this then here it is. one, i'm not gay and i happen to find the idea of being with another man repulsive to say the least. no offense. however, that's just how i feel, but i would never force or pass my views onto someone else. as i have met and had a lot of gay friends in the past. in fact, out of all the 20 gay people i ever met in my life, there's only been one that i can honestly say i didn't like. and that was because he couldn't respect or comprehend my one condition i have with all my gay friends. my condition with them is simple: "if you want me to acknowledge and respect your right to be openly gay, then you need to respect and acknowledge my right to be openly straight."
Which in turns translate to, you don't try to convert me to be gay and i won't try to convert you to be straight. Seriously? how is that so hard to understand? i don't think it's unfair to ask for that. do you? i certainly don't, as respect is a two way street. anyways, to get back at the topic at hand, i will say this. although i don't agree with the homosexual lifestyle, i do respect and acknowledge it. in fact, i think it's great that gay people are coming out, as nobody should ever have to hide who they truly are in life.
that's why i honestly can't understand why people are against gay marriages. gay people have as much right to be married or eloped as anyone else here. besides, we all know in about 20 or 40 years later, this law banning gay marriages is going to be ammended to where gay people CAN get married. as i do expect us to evolve from our biased and narrow minded perspectives to be more open about the topic and with more and more people coming out of the closet, I highly expect that there will be a lot more gay voters in 20 to 40 years anyway to where this law will be removed. Hence, we're just wasting tax payer's money just put together a law that's going to be taken down in a few decades anyway. therefore, why don't we just not even bother putting it up and use the money for something more important like.....our public school systems. they're at a all time low in test scores right now, and the drop out rate is increasing along with unemployment in our country. why don't we use the tax payer's money on those issues. issues we should be more focused on. not issues like this to where it'll just be something in place, until humanity grows tolerant enough to allow it later on anyways. that's just a waste of money if you ask me.
did we forget that it used to be taboo for inter racial dating to take place back in the 1950's, 60's, and even 70's and even before those time periods? Now, it's a helluva a lot more acceptable. you don't ever hear anyone gripe now if you see like say a black guy dating a white girl. or vice versa. now it's like who cares? im sure in 20 years, it'll be the same thing with gays. in 20 yrs, your grandkids will see two guys openly kissing each other in public, and they'll just say...WHO CARES? you may not want to admit it, but it will happen. trust me. i don't like to say i told you so very often. however, if any of you try to debate my opinion, then i only have one thing to say to you. just pray to god (if you believe in him or some diety) that im wrong and/or one or both of us are dead in 20 yrs then. otherwise...I WILL SAY I TOLD YOU SO IN ANOTHER FORUM ON HUBPAGES (assuming hubpages will still be around of course. lol) that's just my two cents anyway.
eta: by the way, the part where i said "I WILL SAY I TOLD YOU SO IN ANOTHER FORUM ON HUBPAGES" was a joke folks. no i won't open up any forums saying i told you so, as that's childish. lol. i just said that last part to be funny. however, everything else i did mean though.
lorlie6, so many heartfelt replies on this subject! I saw a YouTube video recently that pitted a long-time minister against a private film maker. The minister loved using the OT to show how homosexuals should be put to death...the minister answered the filmmakers question in the affirmative that every word in this chapter was true...the filmmaker went on to iterate that a person with bad eyesight was equal with a deformed person, and also should be put to death...the minister wore glasses. It ended with the minister squirming like a toad, flattering the filmmaker, then running. The minister had caused years of persecution on gays. He ended up fleeing into his car, and driving away.
I fully support gays being able to marry, and i'm totally happy that it was ruled that they should be allowed to be married...
... But I fail to see how it's unconstitutional - The Tenth Amendment makes VERY clear that gay marriage is at best a state issue (i.e., not a federal level act of government).
Don't get me wrong - I would LOVE to see a "let's all be equal under the law, and let's let whoever wants to get married to whoever they want to" Amendment to the Constitution, but unfortunately it's just not there.
I haven't read the full ruling yet, but my understanding is that the judge ruled that it violated due process and equal protection clauses.
The ruling is here.
once again - i love gay people, i've even volunteered to be a sperm donor to a lesbian couple ---
--- but I simply fail to see how "No State shall ... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws" means that California can't hate gay people.
As much as I would LOVE to say "meh, it might be a mis-reading of the 14th Amendment, but at least it's a win for civil-rights!!!", I simply can't - this is the kind of thing that leads to tyranny.
"Some animals are MORE equal than others"
Let's just pass a Constitutional Amendment saying "gay people can get married; it REALLY isn't that big of a deal!"
Exactly. It isn't a big deal. It is just a special kind of contract.
what isn't a big deal? the constitution?
I think you... need to re read my post...
Evan - I'm glad to hear you are tolerent of gays. I mean that seriously. I was/am pleased that Dick Cheney has seen the light on the issue. Anti-gay prejudice is perhaps the last socially acceptable bias to go. And it's going.
I read some of the judges ruling. The decision was based on 'equal protection'. I want to make an example not in the ruling. Suppose you want to enter into a contract. I want to enter into the same kind of contract. I'm prohibited from the contract by law because - my eyes are blue. You have brown eyes - and can make the deal I am prohibited from making. I could file a suit under the 'equal protection' clause that I am unfairly being singled out, a violation of equal protection under the law.
The marriage 'contract' was/is irationally administered. The 'contract' is not for state sanctioned sex and possible reproduction. (The law does not prohibit marriage between a man and a woman if either party is sterile and/or incapable of coitus. The marriage contract is not automatically nullified if one party is unable to sexually perform.) The marrriage contract means more than state-sanctioned sex. Proposition 8 was an attempt to codify the will of the 'brown-eyed majority' to limit the contractual rights of the 'blue-eyed minority' and failed any rational test of a reason to discriminate.
The reasoning looks sound to me - but I am biased. If it is upheld in the appeals process, it's going to be an interesting legal twist. I'm delighted to find an area of agreement with you.
I agree completely that any Anti-gay legislation is COMPLETE BullSh!!!t -- In fact, any anti-anything-racial/genetic legislation is COMPLETE BULLSH!!!!!T and should not only be ignored and repealed, but it should be actively disobeyed.
But this doesn't mean that it's Unconstitutional.
marriage isn't really a state issue to begin with, but I guess everyone thinks it is...
I'm still trying to figure out how "equal protection under the law" means "equal right to be married to whomever you want". ... How does allowing anyone to marry anyone (as I agree should be allowed) translate to the "law" "protecting" everyone "equally"?
Marriage doesn't serve to protect anything. That's ALL i'm arguing.
I would LOVE to see an amendment to the Constitution saying "let's all be friends, and everyone with any genetic difference whatsoever is allowed to whatever the hell they feel like"
... but until then, the law IS constitutional -- which is sickening.
Once again, my entire argument is just simply that "equal protection under the law" and "marriage" don't really seem to be related.
How is it difficult for you to recognize the following:
Some people in America that want to get married can.
Some people in America that want to get married can't.
I really struggle to see how you are having difficulty seeing the inequality here.
Let's try another:
Some people in America that want to vote can.
Some people in America that want to vote can't.
Some people in America want to eat in this restaurant.
Some people in America want to eat in this restaurant can't.
... want to go to college and can.
... want to go to college and can't.
... want to marry a white woman and can.
... want to marry a white woman and can't.
And before you try--not saying you will, but just preempting in case--to say: "Some people in America want to break the law" and "some can't".... Or maybe "Some people want to bear children and do, some who want to can't" ... So, NO. No b.s. arguments, please, no straw men or red herrings. Just explain how there is a huge difference here. Where is your equality mystery coming from?
i see the inequality, I'm not a bozo.
But I fail to see how it is "equal protection".
I'm not a bozo, I'm simply pointing out that the ruling is unconstitutional.
That's the whole issue - it IS unfair, it IS horrible, it IS annoying, it IS evil...
... but unfortunately it's constitutional!! Let's amend the constitution to allow gay people to be married. But let's do it right! This isn't a "red herring" or a "stray man" this is a real issue: do we REALLY want a SINGLE unelected judge to be able to amend the Constitution?!
Actually a marriage license is a state deal. In fact it is a legal contract regulated by the state. You can have all the ceremonies you want, but if a marriage contract or license is not filled out, signed, witnessed and notarized by a state authorized person, you are not married.
When my wife and I were married in California we were told by the minister that we should check with the county registrar to confirm that our contract was filed, because if it wasn't we were not married. We did check and it was.
It seems fairly obvious to me.
From the judge's decision:
"Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license. Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite sex couples are superior to same-sex couples. Because California has no interest in discriminating against gay men and lesbians, and because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis, the court concludes that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional."
If this is unconstitutional, do you consider Loving vs. Virginia unconstitutional as well?
"Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man," fundamental to our very existence and survival.... To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discrimination. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State."
After all, all white people had the same right to marry other white people. Too bad for you and your fiancee, I guess, that white-Asian marriages were among those prohibited by many states.
(I agree about the amendment, though I really think that the government should get out of the business of marriage entirely - give all consenting adults who want one a civil union protecting stuff like their right to each other's insurance and next-of-kin rights for issues involving illness, death, and children - and leave it to the churches who they want to "marry" or not.)
What's overlooked in this post is that it was a FEDERAL court. This has national implications. Despite the inherent stupidity, Prop 8 may do more to advance gay rights than any event of the last decade.
This quote: "Because California has no interest in discriminating against gay men and lesbians, and because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis, "
..makes me worry!
No - it's not cuz i hate gay people (i've offered to donate my ... y'know... to a lesbian couple trying to have children).
It's because CALIFORNIA DOES NOT HAVE A CONSTITUTIONAL OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE MARRIAGES ON AN EQUAL BASIS!!!!
My argument is NOT "i hate gays" --- my argument is "I HATE TYRANNY!!" This "equally based marriage" requirement is just a completely MADE UP clause that DOESN'T exist in the constitution!!!
A JUDGE IS AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION, AND NO ONE SEEMS TO CARE!!!
The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.
Where does it say that a judge is allowed to amend the Constitution ON HER OWN?! It's an act of monarchy!!
for the last time - I'm COMPLETELY OK with an amendment declaring one of the following:
"all people should be allowed to marry whomever they want"
"marriage is not a governmental issue, and thus all levels of government shall not have any business WHATSOEVER in the issue of marriage"
or ... a combination of the two!
But "equal protection" and "letting people get married" are JUST NOT THE SAME THING!!
Nah Evan, people don't get it. They don't care HOW they got their way as long as they got their way. And this is what is really frightening...
Before you both faint away from terror; please remember there are Three Branches of Government for a reason. It's in the hope that at least one of them will say "enough of this BS and finally do the right thing.
GOD BLESS AMERICA!
It worked the opposite way last time.
Judicial activisim is a problem. Don't try to pin it to this. The last judge nuked equality which is how Prop 8 happened at all. This judge nuked it again. Activisim is activism, polemics are polemics.
Fix the system. Fine.
But don't pretend that it doesn't go both ways. Fix the judicial crap. I'm with you.
Don't pretend like that's what's really at stake with this decision.
You can't fix judicial crap until you fix peoples' minds John. Lawyers ARE people, and they are influenced by other people, too...
And people seem incorrigible, no matter how many times they get burnt they still let ends justify the means...
The problem is judicial activism is one of those "it just is" parts of our system.
There are just certain rifts that happen. We are stuck with a bullshit system that allows one douchebag to do what this guy did just as much as the other douchebag did the exact opposite a few years ago. Both "blew off the mandate of the people."
Fine, this time the "injustice" was for the good in MY opinion. Doesn't change what you are trying to say and what I agree with. You are right!
Polemics are what they are. Which is why the arguments about precedent are what they are. What really has to happen is we have to try to make a society that doesn't focus on the five or eight UNSOVLEABLE issues and instead tries to fix ALL THE OTHER BROKEN SHIT.
Do you think it is possible at all? Somehow I tend to doubt it lately...
Honestly, given that pretty much every single polemic has been debated eloquently by both sides for creeping up on 3,000 years (I LOVE Thucydides... man did that guy's work change my view of all of this crap) I don't think it is possible.
Not because it isn't possible, but because we as a race are too stubborn and retarded to do it.
The continuation of religion makes it so much worse because all the people who claim to have DIVINE backing to their hate and single-minded, uni-culturalism continue to ruin everything, as always.
I don't know how you solve the key divisive topics that keep going on. Both sides are totally and completely right in their own ways despite the rabid and species-destroying commitment to singular answers to complex problems. I think pride is probably going to end up being the key human trait. Maybe the radiation will mutate the three survivors and the repopulation will work better the third time around--since the flood didn't fix it last time God tried to restart the stupid ass game he made.
For god's sake Shadesbreath -- quit making me sound like a homophobe, or a redneck conservative.
there is a single unelected judge who is amending the constitution. Yes, i wish that gay people could be married and had equal RIGHTS, but i fail to see how this is "equal protection under the law".
I would MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH rather simply have an amendment in the Constitution declaring "Marriage is not a governmental issue, and no system of government shall be allowed to rule on any issue of marriage at all in anyway"
I'm HAPPY that this will aide the homosexual ability to be free. I am merely worried that, once again, a single person is changing the Constitution and no one seems to care.
I do not understand how you CANNOT see that that this is an equal protection issue. There is no "amending" here - just protecting a minority from the prejudice of others. You cannot give rights to some and deny to others - it is as simple as that.
see, i'm having trouble seeing "being allowed to become married" as "equal protection"...
But then, after talking with some gay people they've reminded me that because they can't get married, they can't finance their lives the same way, that they can't go to see their loved ones if they have an accident or an illness, and they can't have children to have health insurance and other things..
I'm officially changing my mind - marriage is a sort of protection. Godspeed Judge walker, godspeed.
Because you were failing to understand that it about the RIGHTS associated with marriage. If marriage didn't carry all that with it, nobody would care.
There are so many legal issues tied up in marriage that it's almost unimaginable. Social Security Benefits are another one of those things denied to gay marrieds, in that if one partner dies the surviving partner has no right or access to the former spouses benefits.
I'm shocked to see someone declare a change in position. So shocked, in fact, that I don't know what to say.
I'm impressed that you would publicly change your position. That's the first time I've seen that happen on any forum.
I am reading about Libertarianism as a result of your posts on the forums. I have to say that I can't wrap my mind around how it could possibly be practical in today's world, but at least I'm learning a few things.
This is the first time I have seen you actually discuss. Your position is not the important part but it is that you are actually listening to others and interacting with them.
You may think I dislike you but I don't. I think you are very smart and you have some very good ideas. If you listen and converse with others, then more people will listen to you.
You may see me as jackass or jerk and that is okay but I saw you as a person who wanted to just interject his opinion but at the same time I saw you as being potentially influential. I don't agree with everything you say but if you listen I will listen and so will others.
The real problem with this is that the California referendum process does not go through constitutional review, like referendums in some other states do. If there have been a requirement for constitutional review, then Proposition 8 would never have gotten on the ballot in the first place.
When you read the judges decision, it is clear that the proposition did violate both equal protection and due process which made it unconstitutional.
Not getting all excited about perverted ways of solving problems. That's more than enough for a start.
What's perverted about the way this problem was solved?
If you come back and read my posts, you might see what I meant. I am still on the fence about this particular case, because I don't feel being educated enough in American legal matters to decide conclusively. It will take a while, if it happens at all.
Evan, I'm not accusing you of being homophobic, just of overthinking this a bit without looking at the legal context of the ruling.
The US Supreme Court declared in Loving vs. Virginia in 1967 (a unanimous decision, by the way) that "marriage is one of the basic civil rights of man" and that for a state to deny people the right to marry or not marry was a violation of the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses.
Whether you agree with it or not, the precedent in this case is very well established and if you want to single out an "activist judge" for amending the Constitution without being elected, you'll have to go back to Earl Warren, Hugo Black, William O. Douglas, Tom C. Clark, John M. Harlan II, William J. Brennan, Jr., Potter Stewart, Byron White, and Abe Fortas in '67.
Vaughn Walker has done nothing but uphold their precedent.
"I agree about the amendment, though I really think that the government should get out of the business of marriage entirely - give all consenting adults who want one a civil union protecting stuff like their right to each other's insurance and next-of-kin rights for issues involving illness, death, and children - and leave it to the churches who they want to "marry" or not."
Leave it to the Churches who they want to "MARRY" or not!
That's the whole problem in a nutshell. Straight people don't want Gay people FORCING churches to Marry them. As a gay man; I dont want to walk down the aile with my man. I just want the same benefits and tax breaks and all the other legal protections a straight couple has. The few gay people that want to live that church fairytale will have to find a church that is willing to perform that "Ritual" for them after they get the legally protected marriage license from their state.
ok- here we go: you're demanding legal "protections"!!!
Maybe i'm mistaken- what protection are you not getting that a straight person would get? My entire argument rests on the belief that "marriage" has little to nothing to do with "protection under the law"
I will gladly change my "a judge is amending the constitution (for the better, at least), but no one seems to care!" argument if you can associate the two.
I'm not a legal expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I don't understand why you say a judge is amending the constitution. Isn't the judge merely interpreting the constitution? And the reason he is forced to do it is that a law was enacted that violates the constitution? Isn't that one reason we have judges?
Am I missing something here?
No, the US Supreme Court declared marriage equality to be a constitutional issue in 1967 and Walker is simply upholding that precedent. He's not amending the Consitution at all.
Thank you for answering. Evan seems to have disappeared.
Evan may disagree, but that's my understanding of the situation. If you have time, I'd really encourage you to check out the decision yourself - the professional opinions I've seen suggest that it's pretty much rock solid and the layman's opinions are celebrating some really choice quotes. Most of the juicy stuff starts around page 111 of the PDF file. (Evan, you may want to read it too, since I think it will answer your questions about the Constitutional basis of the decision.)
There are 1,138 federal statutes alone dealing with ways in which married couples are treated differently under the law than unmarried couples. Many are benefits, many are liabilities, but regardless, married gay and lesbian couples are eligible for none of them, because their marriages are not recognized by federal law. (An exception is a few benefits offered to gay and lesbian federal employees.)
Only a handful of states extend identical state benefits to gay and lesbian married couples, while a few others offer pared down benefits. Many states refuse to recognize gay marriages at all, even those considered valid in another state, so if the couple has to move or travel to one of these states for any reason their marriage is essentially dissolved as soon as they cross the border, for the duration of their stay.
We can argue til the cows come home about whether these rights and responsibilities should exist in the first place, but the fact is, they do, and they are denied to gay and lesbian couples by the federal government and most states.
And yet we still wait for Evan to change his position as he promised.
In fairness, I haven't seen him on the forums yet this morning. Maybe he's on the West Coast or something, it's not even 7 AM over there.
His last post in this thread was a little over an hour ago, but he probably has a life and had to go live it. I'm sure he'll be back to respond.
Exactly. I don't know why this is so hard for conservatives to understand.
Because of religious freedom no church and no representative of a church is going to be required to marry anyone they choose not to. That is the case now and will be in the future. Besides there are plenty of state JOPs to perform marriages, and there are plenty of churches that are fine with gay marriages that a same sex couple will not find it difficult to find a place to wed. Of all the gay couples I know, none of them are interested in asking a church that doesn't want them to marry them.
"The Tenth Amendment makes VERY clear that gay marriage is at best a state issue"
Or a the people issue.
I just hope it sticks so that we can move forward now and start fixing the state.
I just read the concluding pages (thanks, kerryg), and it's pretty durn dismissive of folk who made the argument into one of moral superiority, rather than protection under the law for equal rights among all individuals. A win for logic and human rights at the same time. cool--there's every indication that it'll stick.
Wait for it...
Shadesbreath - Good call. As a Californian, I say: why wait on this to start fixing the state? Let's get crackin'!
I am not sure I understand Evan's confusion. Equal protection under the laws is something that is embodied in our constitution and is certainly something that California must obey even if it does not wish to do so. States are compelled to obey the requirements of our federal constitution and the protections therein. And, I love how people who know nothing about Vaughn Walker are accusing him of being an activist. I have practiced before him and argued hearings before him. He is not normally considered an activist. Among other things, he gained infamy by taking a harsh view of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, and sharply curtailing shareholder class actions against corporations. He lost on this issue on appeal, but he is considered a remarkably talented jurist and not an activist. He was originally appointed by Ronald Reagan but did not obtain the bench at this time due to opposition from liberals, including Nancy Pelosi. He subsequently made it to the bench under appointment by G.W. Bush. Walker is a conservative with libertarian leanings. Walker's ruling was not only unsurprising, but mandated under the Constitution. We can change the federal constitution, but Prop. 8 violated the current Constitution.
Before i start my argument (stating it for the 19th time) i'd like to simply point out that states do NOT have to uphold ANY law the federal government. If the federal government passed a law saying "kill all jews" then a state not only has the ability to ignore the law, but the DUTY to ignore (and refuse to enforce) it. The argument was set forth by Thomas Jefferson (yes, THE Thomas Jefferson) in 1798. It is referred to as "nullification" and "interposition"
now the argument:
the 14th amendment indeed says that "no state shall deny... equal protection of the law".
But I'm unfortunately failing to see how "getting married" is "equal protection under the law." Do married people get more police help? do married people win more lawsuits in court?
I could be misreading the whole thing - and i'll gladly change my tune if someone can show me the light -- I'm merely upset that a single unelected person who has their own opinions and own motives is amending the constitution.
I'm happy that this might lead to the rights of Gays to be married. I'm a "voluntary donor" to a lesbian couple, so don't paint me as a homophobe.
"Do married people get more police help? do married people win more lawsuits in court?"
No to those specific questions, but yes, married people do have special protections under the law. Everyone who chooses to get married has access to them, and barring some people from getting married also bars them from accessing those protections.
Married people do not have to testify against each other in court under the 5th amendment. Unmarried people (no matter how long they've been in an exclusive romantic relationship) can't take the 5th and not testify against their girlfriends/boyfriends.
Married people's property automatically passes to their surviving spouse when they die; unmarried people must have a will or their property goes through the probate process. Even if there is a will, the family of a gay person who leaves his property to his lover can challenge the will in court and have often done so successfully.
Married people always get to visit each other in hospital. Unmarried people don't.
Married people have a greater chance being able to adopt kids than single people.
A married person with a dependent spouse can claim the dependent spouse on their tax return. An unmarried person supporting his boyfriend while the boyfriend finishes college cannot.
Now all of these arguments assume that there are people who want to get married, and are living as though they were married, but are being denied the legal benefits of being married for some reason other than they haven't bothered to get married. This is the case for many gay couples: they want to get married (and partake in those benefits) but are legally barred from doing so simply because they're both male or both female.
"Judicial activisim is a problem"
Is our Judicial Branch of our Government
"A POTTED PLANT"?
Is it just a rubber stamp for the other two branches of Government?
I'm tired of seeing that phrase "Judicial Activisim"? It's not cute, and doesn't make sense to me. The Lawyers for We The People need to "just sit there and shut up"? Just what do people think their job is?
check out "Nullification" by Thomas E. Woods Jr.
He talks, in the book, about how states have a right to ignore unconstitutional laws / judicial decisions /executive orders, refuse to enforce them, and that they have the right and power to PREVENT the federal government from enforcing them.
He can talk all he wants, but we settled that with the Civil War.
For real!...Somebody stepped into the rabbit hole.
Thank God for Billionires!
I wish everybody could have seen it. During a news report about the proposition 8 decision, they showed a couple holding up a sign. The sign said "WE HAVE BEEN TOGETHER FOR 32 YEARS". It was a gay couple. What's Love? I'm not absolutely sure...but I think love is 32 Years of Marriage!
LOL You are preaching to a choir. As far as I am aware not a single person on this thread is against gay marriage or gays in general
But, can you help me with the "Judicial Activisim" question. You don't have a problem with this Judge or this decision; but, tell me why you are scared of this Judicial Activisim? Is it really a legitimate argument?
"Judicial activism" whatever it means I leave to John (Shades). My point was that I think ends do not justify the means, therefore using improper reasoning to fight for proper case will almost certainly backfire, one way or another.
COME ON MISHA! I really don't understand what you mean. You and shade left me way back at Polemic. Slow down and let the rest of us in please.
Misha, I mean you no disrespect, but I do not see anywhere in this thread where you have identified the "improper reasoning" in Vaughn Walker's reasoning. What many laypersons do not appreciate is that judges, all the time, issue opinions with which they do not agree because they feel compelled to do so to honor precedent or the constitution. Vaughn Walker, believe it or not, is a conservative judge that is not known for activism. He has repeatedly sided against gay causes (although he himself is gay). His greatest fame was trying to reduce corporate accountability for securities fraud under the Private Securities Litigation Act of 1995. The democratic party tried to block his appointment and succeeded for many years on the ground that he is anti-gay (ironic) and too conservative (true). He is a Reagan and Bush appointee. Walker, as a matter of law and conscience, struck down Prop. 8 because it is unconstitutional. Judges are not immune from their own political beliefs, but I believe that this opinion will be upheld by the Ninth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court. Frankly, I do not think this was a great surprise to the unpatriotic bigots that mastermminded this proposition...but they probably felt that the ends justified the means even if it meant betraying the Constitution. I think your problem is with them.
here's the entire "judicial activism argument"
ONE SINGLE PERSON just amended the Constitution. Whether it be for the better or for the worse (believe me, it's usually for the worse - this time they got it for the better), a SINGLE PERSON is amending the constitution.
I fully think that gays should be allowed to marry, it's just that A SINGLE PERSON has amended the Constitution.
UNTIL someone can show me how marriage goes hand in hand with "equal protection under the law" (which i DO mean as a serious question- i might have this wrong), I simply can't change my argument.
Don't think of me as a homophobe - for the 80th time on this forum, I must state that I am a "voluntary donor" to a lesbian couple-- I'm simply wary of giving THAT MUCH POWER to a SINGLE UNELECTED person.
Sure it is.
One judge usurped the wishes of a majority of voters in California.
You can't see that?
it should never have been put to a vote in the first place - that's what was being decided. We can't vote as a populace to overthrow the Constitution.
That is what judges are supposed to do when voters violate the Constitution. Csn't you see thaf?
I'm curious, if this was such a violation why didn't a lawyer for the opposing side run and get an injunction barring the vote?
Pcunix, all I can see is your side losing again once this hits a court with competent judges.
You are wrong. It will succeed because there are two ruling in the Feb court saying that it is Unconstitutional.
People will keep fighting it because people do have rights whether you like it or not. The United States is not a big giant church where you can force an opinion on people and deny them their own god given rights just because some folks strongly believe they will catch a disease because the Bible told them so.
It is ridiculous. Gays and Lesbians should have all the same rights as everyone else because straight people are not superior to gay people and vice versa.
No one is going to catch a disease from touching a gay man. Straight people give birth to gay kids but somehow the ignorant folks believe that gay parents produce gay babies!
What don't folks get. Straight people have homosexual children and straight children. It holds absolutely no weight to say that lesbian and gay folks will suddenly turn all the children gay.
Or didn't you get the memo? You need a man and a woman to produce a baby therefore a man and a man cannot produce a baby neither can a woman and a woman...gee so um.. like where did the gay babies come from? Go back to school stupid! lol
Eveyone on the news shows say this is a rocksolid decision. They say it will hold up in the Supreme Court. Please tell me why you and Shade think this is a bad decision.
K, I'll try
I am not a big authority on American constitution, and tend to trust Evan on this. If what he says about what certain constitutional clauses contain is right, declaring this law unconstitutional (not compatible with the constitution) is wrong. Lie in other words.
Now, lie is universally accepted as wrong means.
So, here we have an example of using wrong means to reach a proper case (removing discrimination from marriage).
However, mine (and not only mine) life experience shows that using wrong means almost always (I am saying almost just to be cautious) defeats the ends, even if they are proper. Sometimes it happens right away, sometimes there is a delay, but it always happens eventually.
Hence the concern
Misha, I have read your responses above and still do not follow (per my previous response). It may be a truism that the "ends do not justify the means" but it is unclear how that truism applies in this case. If you mean that Proposition 8 violated our constitution, despite moral grounds for abhoring gay marriage, and therefore you favor Walker's opinion striking down this law because "the ends do not justify the means" I guess I understand what you are saying. But I do not think this your position and only reluctantly put words in your mouth. What your position is remains a mystery to me because you keep saying "the ends do not justify the means" but do not explain what you mean. I guess that you are unhappy with Walker's opinion in some way but you remain silent on why that is. If what you say is true, then the only issue is whether Proposition 8 is constitutional or whether it was an unconstitutional means to oppress gay marriage. If it is unconstitutional, then the ends certainly do not justify the means and proponents of Proposition 8 have betrayed the constitution in their hatred of homosexuality. I believe that reasonable minds may differ on most issues, but I think most would agree that Proposition 8 was a rather aggressive interpretation of what the Constitution permits. Vaughn Walker, and I believe the Ninth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court will agree that the law was patently unconstitutional.
By the way, this isn't directed at you Misha but at others in this thread. Saying that you do not hate homosexuals or that you know them personally is a little like saying that you have black friends. It does nothing to enhance your credibility (and is sort of laughable). You are going to be judged by the positions you take and the fact that you know a homo somewhere in your past does not insulate you from speculation about what your own prejudices are.
OK, tell me please, what exactly language contained in your constitution ban on gay marriage in California is incompatible with?
I do not understand your question. Would you like me to reiterate the equal protection clause or Walker's opinion? Or neither?
'Equal Protection' clause - US Federal Constitution.
To understand the ruling, first separate in your mind 2 VERY different things that we generally combine in our minds when we think 'marriage'. The first has to do with rgw religous and ethical features that this ruling has nothing to do with. If you are Catholic or Mormon, the state is not going to require same-sex church ceremonies.
'Married' - outside of the ethical, religous and sexual features is a CONTRACT, recognized by law which gives the 2 people rights and obligations and authority concerning their partner. Gay people want to be able to enter the same contract and were denied the right. WHY?
'Equal Protection' under the law suggests that 2 gay people have just as much right to enter into the LEGAL contract - as a hetero couple. The judge demanded that California show the rational reasons why there was a compelling reason to deny this group equal rights and there was no LEGAL reason.
The ruling is posted online - the conclusions of the judge are easy enough to read, starting around page 109. Set aside the moral and religous features of being married and think of marriage as a contract, which the judge did.
Amendment 10: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
-- thus a state gets to decide on how to marry people (i think this is immoral, but it's what the damned constitution says)
Amendment 14, section 1: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."
--- I simply don't see how "marriage" and "equal protection of the laws" goes hand in hand.
If you show me a married couple getting more protection of the law, then I'll change my tune.
I REALLY will.
So, if I understand you right, you are simply disagreeing with the judge's interpretation of the constitution.
Equal rights is and always has been at the top of my concerns list. I must admit however, what happens when people who believe in having more then one wife or husband at the same time, or what happens when people who believe it's OK to marry your sister, brother or cousin, what happens when all those types of people kick and yell they want equal rights?
This could get messy if you know what I mean. I have no problem calling it a gay union... but I think the need to draw the line somewhere is a future debate.
Two people are in neighboring ICU rooms. They are both on life support. They have both expressed on numerous occasions to their significant other that they do NOT wish to be kept alive by machines when the quality of life degrades to zero. And it has for both of them.
One is a hetero couple and the legal spouse is able to honor the wishes of his/her partner. The other pair has been together for decades but is unable to marry because they are gay. The partner knows the wishes of the incapacitated person and has NO authority to have the wishes granted. In exactly the same circumstances, the gay couple is discriminated against, to the degree that a gay person is forced to endure weeks or months of suffering when there is no hope of recovery.
A living will cannot provide visitation rights or prevent being forced to testify against your partner. I guess you conveniently forgot that?
Should have gotten married, you mean. Oops, gay people can't get married, even if they want to. Equal protection under the law? Nope.
Doug: it sounds to me the "couple" you're referring to should have had some documents in place before becoming so ill. That applies to "everyone" not just some types of people. I have seen a hetero family have to fight with the court because the person who was very ill didn't have a living will in place. So makes no difference.
I think Doug's point is that a married hetero couple doesn't need any documents; the ill person's spouse is automatically granted the right to make medical decisions for his/her partner. A gay couple does not have that automatic right.
livelonger: I know what his point was...and that's why I gave the answer I gave. Maybe you misread my post? When I said a hetero family had to fight with the courts because the "dying" person didn't have a living will in place, I wasn't referring to a "married couple" I was referring to the brothers and sisters of a 34 year old woman who was single, dying and didn't have a living will..! That family had to fight with the courts to get a disconnect of her life support. Hope that cleared it up for you.
Perhaps, but why should they be treated differently?
Ralph: I noticed your post showed up as a reply to mine which makes no sense because I posted mine 50 minutes ago and your reply shows you made it 7 hours ago. So, in effect, no way could you be replying to my post. In that case I'm not going to answer the question you posted, its clearly not my question. By the way Ralph, that crooks page you asked me to put up months ago? Its up.
We do get more rights.
If my wife is in a hospital, I have rights that none of her friends enjoy. Her family cannot prevent me from visiting.
If she is charged with a crime, I cannot be forced to testify against her.
Ready to change your mind?
Umm, you keep talking about rights. I don't see the word "right" or "rights" in the text Evan provided. Did he not provide the whole text?
Looks like the question lies in the definition of "protection". What exactly does it mean here?
If you are not giving homosexual couples the same rights as heterosexual couples, you are not giving them equal protection.
As I said, we seem to understand protection differently. Curious to see what Evan has to say on this, when he gets some time.
What do you think equal protection means? If it does not mean protection from unequal application of law, what does it mean?
Well, the exact language seems to be "deny ... equal protection of the laws". So we are talking "protection of the laws", or the laws designed to protect people from something. To me it sounds more like presumption of innocence, etc. - that kind of things. I can hardly connect it to marriage as it is. I see a connection to rights now, though - so I am not that sure really. Prolly need to think about it more.
Misha: pcunix is just following this thread topic!
All ForumsPolitics and Social IssuesSocial IssuesHuman Rights Issues California Rules Prop 8 Unconstitutional!
So, clearly...Human Rights is on topic here.
Married people can refuse to testify against each other in a court of law, under the 5th amendment. Unmarried people cannot. When you bar people from getting married, you bar them from this protection under the law.
There are other legal benefits to marriage that I listed above.
I've written at length about this issue on a number of posts. Several hubbers have a deep misunderstanding of federalism under our Constitution. They keep repeating that for some reason the rights embodied in the Federal Constitution do not apply to marriage because marriage is a state law issue. This was addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court over 40 years ago in Loving v. Virginia, where it struck down numerous state laws preventing interracial couples from marrying. Given that the right to marry has been held to be a substantive due process right, the real issue is whether Proposition 8 permits all citizens to marry equally. It does not...just as the old anti-miscegnation laws did not permit all citizens to marry equally. Now the government can apply laws unequally if it has a legitimate basis to do so. States articulated some familiar arguments in defending their anti-miscegnation laws that we hear today...i.e., concerns about harm to society, our children, education, etc. None of those passed muster. Maybe proponents of Proposition 8 could have articulated good reasons why California has a legitimate interest in preventing gays from marrying while allowing everyone else to do so. They haven't yet, but others may disagree. The federalism argument, however, is just wrong.
Further to my earlier post to you, I have also addressed the 10th amendment argument at length and provided the relevant Supreme Court authority. At the time of the 10th amendment, there were some groups that advocated limiting the powers of the federal government to the express powers enumerated in the constitution. Those voices did not win the day, and the language limiting those powers was not placed in our constitution. This is why the Supreme Court has repeatedly upheld that our federal government has implied powers...i.e., the Necessary and Proper Clause. The 10th Amendment does not modify the Necessary and Proper Clause. And the language that Evan points to is language that the Supreme Court has repeatedly held over last 50 years is merely a "truism" that does not change the Constitution in any way. 10th amendment challenges to federal action by states or cities almost always lose. Again, I fleshed this out an provided SC precedent in an earlier post in this thread.
Human rights sometimes take precedence over documents written hundreds or even thousands of years ago.
That they do not always take precedence is a matter of great sadness.
Proposition 8 relied on advertising, etc. depicting the alleged moral superiority of heterosexual marriage, and spreading fear about a perceived but unspeficied threat to our children from learning about the topic of same-sex marriage in schools. This is not a logical argument, but an advertising campaign, and it does not place a priority on human rights.
Judge Walker's opinion denied the validity of Proposition 8 because it was not a good idea to vote to change laws in a manner inconsistent with logic. That this ruling also happens to protect more human rights than Proposition 8 did is a fortunate event.
Sorry Teresa, but I strongly believe following such a path does not benefit the society.
Wow, Misha, I'm surprised -- you are often a voice of reason in the forums.
Are you really suggesting that it was incorrect to have amended the Constitution in any way since its first publication, or are you refering to documents written much longer ago?
LOL Of course not the old documents you mentioned
Since we are talking about American constitution, this is what I am talking about. I have no problem with it being amended with due procedure, but I have a problem with anything taking precedence over established laws. The procedure to change them is in place and has to be followed to the letter exactly for the reason of protection of human rights.
That is exactly what is happening.
Our courts ensure that laws do not violate the Constitution. The Supreme Court is the final stop in this process. That is its purpose.
A judge has looked at this and decided that California made an unconstitutional law. This is the process. This IS the proper procedure.
Oh, I see, cool:
So you're saying that Proposition 8 was incorrect in the first place, yes?
"Homosexuals were banned from giving blood for their sexual behavior, not for having certain desires. The prodigious promiscuity in disease-causing behavior, coupled with denial of lethal dangers, provides incontestable evidence that the homosexual orientation is a compulsive and addictive condition -- with practitioners looking for self-justification in a pseudo-identity."
who says that?...'were banned from giving blood etc." and what is 'denial of lethal dangers' about...looking for some clarity.
A gay man in my grad school pointed this out to us
The form you fill out to give blood asks if you've ever had anal sex.
It's sad, but true.
Well, Evan......I wonder if the person who created that form you refer to thought about the hetros that have anal sex? however...that is probably old info...and i always find it difficult when 'homosexual' seems to always lead to a 'penis'....LOL! ...and nothing else...my sis gives blood all the time...she's lesbian...and married and all that.
I'm still curious about what the 'denial of lethal dangers' means....
I really can't take these discussions very seriously anymore...there are so many more important things to worry about in life.
Not to put too base fact on things, but the anus is a one way street, not designed to receive objects into it, but designed to remove the waste matter that we produce, therefore anal sex is wrong from a design aspect, quite apart from it's inherent health implications.
This however is quite separated from the matter of same sex 'marriage' in a secular society, which a minority of people wish to enter into.
Civil partnerships conferring equal rights are and should be acceptable, but do not confuse a legal agreement with a marriage contract.
God considers marriage to be promise (of lifelong commitment to one person) plus consummation (by the physical joining of two bodies to become one, and BTW to procreate if He so blesses the union) equals marriage, this to be confirmed and declared in the sight of the congregation of believers that you belong to..
So anything which falls short of this is not considered marriage, by God.
From a believers standpoint, the piece of paper that the state issues is a secondary legal issue that makes it easier for the state to keep records and collect taxes
Therefore, as believers we need to accept that societies view of 'marriage' and Gods differ enormously.
It is a mistake to confuse these issues, secular folk have the right to be in rebellion to God if they so chose to be, and in today's society a large number do that, whether they are professing faith or not.
People of faith have the right to NOT accept those who chose to disobey God, and (actually) an obligation to warn them of the consequences of their rebellion.
If one wished to ensure equal rights, one needs to respect both sides of the divide.
Tolerance is NOT a one way street, the anus is.
I put it very plainly, what are you looking for? When you go to give blood there is a box that says "Have you have MSM in the last six to twelve months(it varies)?" If you check yes you cannot give blood. The survey taker may also ask before you’re even admitted. Why because the blood of male homosexuals tends to be so contaminated with various viruses and bacteria that all male homosexuals who have been sexually active since 1977 are barred from donating blood.
A contributing factor to all the diseases found in homosexuals is habitual promiscuity; and a contributing factor to their promiscuity is the popularity of drug use among them. As a homosexual columnist for the Windy City Times, Jose Zuniga, has reported, there is "out-of-control drug use undermining our [homosexual] community's health and well-being, and contributing to the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases."
Homosexual author Dennis Altman, in one of his books, likewise noted the popularity of drugs among homosexuals: "What is disturbing is the degree to which much of the gay world rests on a sea of alcohol and drugs."
AIDS was originally named GRID (gay-related immunodeficiency disease)
Any other questions?
Sources; Jose Zuniga, "Viagra Vexation," Windy City Times, May 28, 1998, p. 14.
21. Dennis Altman, The Homosexualization of America, the Americanization of the Homosexual (NY: St. Martin's Press, 1982), p. 222.
...i'm sure if you look up some stats on drug use in general (legal and illegal), you'd probably find lots of drug use with hetros too...as well as for sexual promiscuity....Aren't there more hetros vs homosexuals...
When people are in long term relationships (all people) many tend to be monogamous...don't they?...I think too the divorce rate is really high amongst hetros and I bet the stats would show adultery as being the main reason....so who'd be spreading diseases around the most...and of course hetros participate in anal sex too.....
You do realize that before 1940 the divorce rate was only 14 %, before that it was in the single digits even after the divorce laws were liberated the rate only increase to 5-10% in the last few years has the rate risen to 50%,. Homosexual “marriages” are allowed in some countries and the divorce rate start out at 50+% what does that say? Sometimes where there is abuse, or adultery divorce is sometimes unfortunately unavoidable, but it's still a tragedy. You are making more of a case AGAINST homosexual marriage than for it by bringing up divorce. Marriage has been weakened by liberalized divorce laws. Does it make sense to weaken it further by liberalized marriage laws?
Studies of every kind (including those conducted by homosexual advocates) confirm that homosexual relationships are far less devoted and monogamous than heterosexual relationships, particularly when male homosexual couples are factored into the equation. Homosexual couples are simply not as monogamous as heterosexual couples, and homosexuals are typically far more sexually active than heterosexuals. A classic homosexual study revealed that 43% of white homosexual men had sex with at least 500 partners and 28% had sex with at least 1000 partners. (A. P. Bell and M. S. Weinberg, “Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women”, New York: Simon and Schuster, 1978, pp. 308, 309; and A. P. Bell, M. S. Weinberg, and S. K. Hammersmith, “Sexual Preference”, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 1981). This survey has been repeatedly confirmed by additional research. The Journal of Sex Research reports that most homosexuals have between 100 and 500 sexual partners in their lifetime. 10.2% reported that they had between 501 and 1,000 sex partners, and 15.7% said they had more than 1000 sex partners in their lifetime. (Paul Van de Ven et al., “A Comparative Demographic and Sexual Profile of Older Homosexually Active Men”, Journal of Sex Research 34, 1997). And studies conducted by homosexual advocate groups agree with these findings, reporting that 24% of those homosexuals who were surveyed reported that they had more than 100 sex partners in their lifetime. Several of those surveyed indicated that they had more than 1000 sex partners. (“Sex Survey Results”, Genre, October 1996, as quoted in “Survey Finds 40 percent of Gay Men Have Had More Than 40 Sex Partners”, Lambda Report, January 1998)
But even within the context of homosexual partnerships, homosexuals are not nearly as devoted and monogamous as heterosexual couples. In a Dutch study of homosexual couples, surveys revealed that homosexual men with a steady partner had an average of 8 additional sex partners every year. (Maria Xiridou, et al, “The Contribution of Steady and Casual Partnerships to the Incidence of HIV Infection among Homosexual Men in Amsterdam”, AIDS 17, 2003). A Canadian study reports similar findings. Homosexual men in committed partnerships were surveyed and reported that only 25% were actually faithful and monogamous in their relationship. (Ryan Lee, “Gay Couples Likely to Try Non-monogamy, Study Shows”, Washington Blade, August 22, 2003). Other studies report that even those homosexuals who say that they are in ‘monogamous’ relationships still report that they have 3 to 5 additional sex partners each year. (David H. Demo, et al., editors, “Handbook of Family Diversity”, New York, Oxford University Press, 2000). And one study revealed that the vast majority of male homosexual partnerships are not monogamous, and every couple studied beyond 5 years reported some form of additional sexual activity outside the partnership. (David P. McWhirter and Andrew M. Mattison, “The Male Couple: How Relationships Develop”, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice-Hall, 1984). In addition to this, another study reported that only 2.7% of older homosexual men had only one sex partner in their lifetime. (Van de Ven et al., “A Comparative Demographic and Sexual Profile”, The Journal of Sex Research, Volume 34, 1997)
Homosexual men consistently report their involvement in a steady partnership while simultaneously reporting that they continue to have multiple sex partners! This kind of accepted unfaithfulness within the context of a reportedly ‘committed’ and ‘steady’ relationship is unique to the homosexual community (particularly the male homosexual community). Why is this so? Studies suggest that homosexual men consider sex outside the relationship to be normative. In fact, many homosexual males simply refuse to be monogamous because they see it as an act of oppression. One study confirmed that only 26% homosexuals believe that commitment is the most important aspect of a marital relationship. (Mary Mendola, “The Mendola Report”, New York, Crown, 1980).
If one could cite cases of homosexuals living long, “healthy“, “monogamous” lives and providing ‘well’ for children, the research shows that such people are the exception rather than the rule, and laws must be based on what usually happens, not exceptions.
Sources not listed above: pleaseconvinemedottcom
you know you can point me to studies etc...I'm going by own observations and people I know and how they live their lives...some studies are just that...who paid for them, why were they written, what was the sample size, how was the data collected, how were the stats interpreted etc. ...you can of course always take some info away but not all....I've read lots of studies on various topics...but I also consider my own observations, experience and knowledge before I determine my own conclusion.
I wasn't pointing to hetro divorce rates as a reason to argue against marriage period....it was to point out that hetros screw around too.....that's all...and there are more hetros than there are GLTG.
It could be interesting to compare studies of the same nature about hetros...at the same time I really don't care what other people do when it comes to their sex lives..or whether or not they marry....I just care about mine and how i conduct myself...I really don't want to judge others..and conclude and put people into groups....it's easy to do...
I try to take a balanced approach and that's all I'm doing...rather than looking at a small segment of something.
...gotta go now
From the dictionary:
Main Entry: mar·riage
Pronunciation: \ˈmer-ij, ˈma-rij\
Etymology: Middle English mariage, from Anglo-French, from marier to marry
Date: 14th century
1 a (1) : the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law (2) : the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage <same-sex marriage> b : the mutual relation of married persons : wedlock c : the institution whereby individuals are joined in a marriage
2 : an act of marrying or the rite by which the married status is effected; especially : the wedding ceremony and attendant festivities or formalities
3 : an intimate or close union <the marriage of painting and poetry — J. T. Shawcross>
So taken at dictionary value, anyone can 'marry' anyone else, and even as a bible believer, I accept that in our secular society, this is the norm and that in principal equal rights should be given to 'spouses'.
However, making this ruling, if it is upheld, MUST NOT be the position that gives homosexuals the right to protest if any religious organisation refuses to 'marry' them, which I fear the ACCL will move towards if they can.
Any religion must be free to marry who they wish, and refuse to marry who they wish.
A Rabbi would (or should) refuse to marry a non Jew to a Jewish person, same sex or opposite.
A Mullah would refuse to marry a non Muslim to a Muslim, and so it goes.
So by all means make same sex marriage a legal right, it's your world to do as you wish with, but please do not try to FORCE those who view it as wrong to view it as right.
John - I think everyone here respects the rights of individuals and churches to form, maintain or even change their positions on the issue of gay rights. No one is asking you to agree - but if the law is upheld in appeals, you have to get out of the way.
Nah, I don' t think so ... not everyone ... asking certain questions gets you labeled and called names.
It is clear that lines are drawn by somewhere by all people ... I'm wanting to know on what grounds the lines are drawn...
Calling someone a "homophobe" assumes "homophbia" is "wrong" and that is a moral judgment.
So, now it's just a matter of who's morals we use ... which comes right back down to "us" vs. "them". "Us" is whoever we agree with ... "them" is ... well "them".
So, no, everyone does not respect the rights of individuals on this forum to disagree or to even openly question.
The are two types of people to take note of.
The first group believe in God communicating to them through imperfect third party interpretations of documents written thousands of years ago.The also believe in others and do not believe God communicates to them right now. They shut God up more than 2000 years ago.
The second group believes in the God living and communicating within them right now in a manner beyond what any words can express. They feel the truth that God approves the joy and love for everyone including gays. This message comes from deep within them where God resides.
The first group is blind and is comfortable to follow other blind groups
I know you all don't give a damn what I think but I do have an opin - so
Like all segments of the population in the homosexual community there are all kinds of people - some use drugs, some are promiscuous, and some don't use drugs and some aren't promiscuous just like with heteros - the point of this issue about whether homosexuals should be allowed to marry has nothing to do with their use of drugs or whether they sleep around - just like with heteros. Silly to start pointing fingers. Many, many homosexuals have or want to have long-term committed relationships and marriage is a lovely way to celebrate that - plus they should get whatever benefits our society offers to married people. That's my opinion. I can't think of any good reason why, just because some people are homophobic and like to think their way of life is the only right way, they should not have full freedoms and rights guaranteed by our constitution to all citizens in the U.S.
but maybe that just sounds too rational and too easy! too "liberal"? for you - this issue has nothing to do with religion, by the way! You can try to make up your mind about homosexuality based on what your Bible, written 2000 years ago says, (and it even contradicts itself) but if that's how you decide things, you might as well go put your head back in the sand and let others decide cuz you're not living in the real world.
NY Times Editorial on Prop 8 Court Decision
Marriage Is a Constitutional Right
Published: August 4, 2010
Until Wednesday, the thousands of same-sex couples who have married did so because a state judge or Legislature allowed them to. The nation’s most fundamental guarantees of freedom, set out in the Constitution, were not part of the equation. That has changed with the historic decision by a federal judge in California, Vaughn Walker, that said his state’s ban on same-sex marriage violated the 14th Amendment’s rights to equal protection and due process of law.
The decision, though an instant landmark in American legal history, is more than that. It also is a stirring and eloquently reasoned denunciation of all forms of irrational discrimination, the latest link in a chain of pathbreaking decisions that permitted interracial marriages and decriminalized gay sex between consenting adults.
As the case heads toward appeals at the circuit level and probably the Supreme Court, Judge Walker’s opinion will provide a firm legal foundation that will be difficult for appellate judges to assail.
The case was brought by two gay couples who said California’s Proposition 8, which passed in 2008 with 52 percent of the vote, discriminated against them by prohibiting same-sex marriage and relegating them to domestic partnerships. The judge easily dismissed the idea that discrimination is permissible if a majority of voters approve it; the referendum’s outcome was “irrelevant,” he said, quoting a 1943 case, because “fundamental rights may not be submitted to a vote.”
He then dismantled, brick by crumbling brick, the weak case made by supporters of Proposition 8 and laid out the facts presented in testimony. The two witnesses called by the supporters (the state having bowed out of the case) had no credibility, he said, and presented no evidence that same-sex marriage harmed society or the institution of marriage.
Same-sex couples are identical to opposite-sex couples in their ability to form successful marital unions and raise children, he said. Though procreation is not a necessary goal of marriage, children of same-sex couples will benefit from the stability provided by marriage, as will the state and society. Domestic partnerships confer a second-class status. The discrimination inherent in that second-class status is harmful to gay men and lesbians. These findings of fact will be highly significant as the case winds its way through years of appeals.
One of Judge Walker’s strongest points was that traditional notions of marriage can no longer be used to justify discrimination, just as gender roles in opposite-sex marriage have changed dramatically over the decades. All marriages are now unions of equals, he wrote, and there is no reason to restrict that equality to straight couples. The exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage “exists as an artifact of a time when the genders were seen as having distinct roles in society and in marriage,” he wrote. “That time has passed.”
To justify the proposition’s inherent discrimination on the basis of sex and sexual orientation, he wrote, there would have to be a compelling state interest in banning same-sex marriage. But no rational basis for discrimination was presented at the two-and-a-half-week trial in January, he said. The real reason for Proposition 8, he wrote, is a moral view “that there is something wrong with same-sex couples,” and that is not a permissible reason for legislation.
“Moral disapproval alone,” he wrote, in words that could someday help change history, “is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and women.”
The ideological odd couple who led the case — Ted Olson and David Boies, who fought against each other in the Supreme Court battle over the 2000 election — were criticized by some supporters of same-sex marriage for moving too quickly to the federal courts. Certainly, there is no guarantee that the current Supreme Court would uphold Judge Walker’s ruling. But there are times when legal opinions help lead public opinions.
Just as they did for racial equality in previous decades, the moment has arrived for the federal courts to bestow full equality to millions of gay men and lesbians.
The fact that this judge is openly homosexual is ignored by the media. If this judge was a born again Christian and found for prop 8, the media response would have been overwhelmingly critical? Do you think he would have had an opportunity to hear the case? This “judge” should have removed himself. His opinion is not backed up with facts.
The logic is so badly skewed, the comment snarks itself. Because (you say) the judge is gay, he should have removed himself. But by the same logic, if the judge was hetero, he would have to remove himself.
Where will we find a eunuch on the federal bench?
I was so proud of this thread and the civil discourse going on between my fellow hubbers and then I got to Spiderpam's first posting and it was all over.
I'm a gay man who was a gay child. I've always known I was gay and I've been in a monogamous relationship with the same man for the past twenty-two years. That's right and what's more? He's a 6 foot black man who was an altar boy and I'm a short Jewish guy who was bar mitzvah. I know, we're the poster children for hate crimes!
Let's get the religion out of politics and keep marching toward equal rights, people. We're not making "a choice" - we're tax paying, law abiding citizens who deserve the same rights as those of you who have an opposite sex partner in your life to live, love and build a life with so step away from the bible and start realizing that your religious views should not be imposed on the rest of us. Remember religious freedom?
To the rest of you - thanks for the interesting opinions and comments!
Thank you for singling me out. This is not a religious issue, but a moral one, you are trying to impose your “morals” on society as well. Why is yours better, because you practice homosexuality? All sexual behaviors is a choice
You were NOT born homosexual, but an area that seems to be common in the development of homosexual tendencies is dysfunctional relationships. It often starts early in life with unhealthy relationships with parents, siblings and peers, which cause emotional wounds. Here are some example factors in childhood relationships that can be influential in sexual development.
Abuse (sexual, emotional, physical, spiritual)
Parental problems: Absent, detached, uninterested, overbearing or controlling; lack of gender affirmation,
Ridicule or teasing from peers,
Sex play with same-sex peers,
Lack of nurture,
Homosexual tendencies can be fed from these kinds of roots, yet it is still up to the individual to decide whether to yield to the temptations. It usually doesn’t happen over night, but rather over years. As people progress through the teen years, they inevitably will be presented with the powerful feelings associated with their sexual development. This period typically offers prime opportunities for the enemy to persuade a person that he or she “is gay” and that this is a permanent condition. Again, troubles in relationships can be instrumental in a person coming to the wrong conclusions. Some examples include: Difficulty connecting emotionally with members of the opposite sex Unpleasant sexual experiences with members of the opposite sex Trauma connected with sexuality (rape, abortion, incest, etc.) Feeling sexual attraction to same-sex persons (including arousal by gay or bisexual porn) Feeling “different” from others Enjoying homosexual experiences, fantasies or dreams Involvement with the occult (gives way to spiritual, emotional & sexual confusion) Words spoken over the person by parents, peers, counselors or teachers Affirmation, acceptance and recruitment by other homosexuals
When a person decides to embrace the lie of a gay identity, the deception is completed. From then on, it can seem like an unbreakable stronghold, especially if it conveniently explains the pattern of experiences and feelings the person may have had in life to that point. Even so, a person making the conclusion that they are gay will discover an endless desire for peace and approval, but will not find it (Isaiah 48:22). They will need to surround themselves with others who continually reaffirm their homosexuality in order to numb their conscience about the lies they have embraced.
sorry the government is tyrannical. I truly hope a "marriage has nothing to do with government" amendment gets passed eventually.
LOL It got waaaaaaay out of hand
Evan, I would still appreciate your view on equal protection of the laws as opposed to Pcunix and Doug view, in case you missed my post
Hey, i just looked at the 14th amendment again, and the judge based her argument off of PART of the first section.
The part she used makes no sense - the laws don't "protect" married people.
Another part argues that rights and liberty CAN be taken away through due process -- disgusting but true. in this case cali. was doing so.
The part that disagrees with both of these claims that "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States"
... so i'm a bit confused myself....
"One of Judge Walker’s strongest points was that traditional notions of marriage can no longer be used to justify"
I hope a judge can do the same when it comes to divorce. It is still very one-sided with the wife getting most of it for heteros. Now we will see what happens with lesbians who are married (wife and wife) or men.
So the judge wants to basically break tradition on his interpretations. So, why not change the whole constitution, gun control, right to bear arms,
free speech is already out, illegal wire-tapping is in. keep it going country
I guess its human to want to simplify things in order to make a decision - and to feel that we all have to make a decision for ourselves on every issue that comes up - when we go to vote we want to be informed - but unfortunately many of us want to ignore huge amounts of the information that is available. I'm not sure that this issue of gay marriage should even be a voting one - we never voted to accept hetero marriage - why should we vote on gays getting married? And if one or several religions' god says one thing, what makes that have any bearing on the decision at all? If you want to start defining homosexuals based on their behaviors you are going to run into huge disputes that have nothing to do with Prop 8! there is a huge array of behaviors that are classified as homosexual and again, have nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of gay marriage. Just as the way heteros have sex, worship, use or don't use drugs, or treat their children have anything to do with their RIGHT to be married.
The only thing we are deciding with Prop 8 is whether or not ALL CITIZENS have equal rights and privileges under our laws. That's it, folks! ALL CITIZENS should get have these rights.
One other thing - sometimes I really think people who are against homosexuality aren't realizing their own "reasons" for their opinions of gays. I have a friend who is "uncomfortable" with gays and doesn't like them, but he never tries to quote the Bible or says its "God's will" to justify his feelings or to say they are worse or heteros or better - he acknowledges simply that he was raised to consider homosexuality "queer" and he doesn't want to get the info necessary to change his ideas. He doesn't want to hang out with gays, that's his right - but he said he couldn't vote on whether they should marry because he recognized his prejudice. I wish more were like him. I respect his honesty - but as for the very vocal obsession and objection to homosexuality that is voiced here on HubPages - I think its dishonest and lamentable. We're supposed to be informed and knowledgeable as we write here on HubPages - but if this issue's debate is any indication of how some people are getting their hub info and writing - I'll have to be really careful about whose hubs I trust!
A judgment of Constitutional Law or a judgment of a single district?
Where is the evidence that a or any laws of US Constitution are unjust with regard to same sex marriage --not civil unions. I would like to see that information. According to the ACLU, civil unions actually have more legal standing than same sex marriages do/would.
Although not for/against this issue, I still do not see the "legal" relevance of same-sex marriages. I do see a financial issue. Maybe they should be questioning the legality of insurance, federally funded health benefits, death mandates, remuneration, etc for same-sex couples instead. Then again, ANY favoritism toward one class of society --based on race, creed or gender preference-- IS a violation of both the Constitution and Bill of Rights. Anything else is "liberal lobbying" aka big money bribes.
Lastly, if this becomes national law and forced upon local governments, should the exact same rules apply to these couples as it does hetero couples? How will they do that without violating both documents? (natural childbearing, inheritance, taxation, divorce, health, ownership of property...)
kerryg- They are human beings. Duh! So are pedophiles, rapist, killers, thieves, liars and yet the behaviors are still wrong, destructive, dangerous and should not be promoted. You say they’re human but you keep comparing them to animals, why? When people need define themselves by their behaviors it’s negative behavior (Hello I’m an alcoholic, addicted etc.)
“There is no "homosexual instinct" in animals,
It is poor science to "read" human motivations and sentiments into animal behavior.
Irrational animal behavior is not a yardstick to determine what is morally acceptable behavior for rational man. Anyone engaged in the most elementary animal observation is forced to conclude that animal "homosexuality," "filicide" and "cannibalism" are exceptions to normal animal behavior. Consequently, they cannot be called animal instincts. These observable exceptions to normal animal behavior result from factors beyond their instincts.
For some people, what animals do is a yardstick of what is and isn't natural. They make a leap from saying if it's natural, it's morally and ethically desirable. Infanticide is widespread in the animal kingdom. To jump from that to say it is desirable makes no sense. We shouldn't be using animals to craft moral and social policies for the kinds of human societies we want to live in. Animals don't take care of the elderly. I don't particularly think that should be a platform for closing down nursing homes. The animal kingdom is no place for man to seek a blueprint for human morality. That blueprint, as bioethicist Bruto Maria Bruti notes, must be sought in man himself: It is a frequent error for people to contrast human and animal behaviors, as if the two were homogenous. .... The laws ruling human behavior are of a different nature and they should be sought where God inscribed them, namely, in human nature.The fact that man has a body and sensitive life in common with animals does not mean he is strictly an animal. Nor does it mean that he is a half-animal. Man's rationality pervades the wholeness of his nature so that his sensations, instincts and impulses are not purely animal but have that seal of rationality which characterizes them as human. In summary, the homosexual movement's attempt to establish that homosexuality is in accordance with human nature, by proving its animal homosexuality theory, is based more on mythological beliefs and erroneous philosophical tenets than on science.”
Source: The Animal Homosexuality Myth
by Luiz Sérgio Solimeo
I look at your hub, but none of your ideas how homosexuality MIGHT be passed down is backed up by facts, not one.
Why is the question of immutability so important? Because if homosexuality is not innate, it must be acquired(facts say that it is). And if it can be acquired, we dare not allow homosexuality to be legitimized to our children. If there remains any shadow of doubt as to the cause of homosexuality, we must err on the side of protecting our children. Indeed we must actively discourage them from viewing homosexuality as safe and normal, when in fact it is demonstrably neither safe nor normal. It bears noting here that normalcy is functioning according to nature or design. Normalcy is not based on popular opinion.
Nevertheless, there is plenty of evidence that homosexuality is not innate. There is a very considerable body of testimony from tens of thousands of men and women who once lived as homosexuals. These ex-"gays" have renounced their former lifestyles and many have become heterosexual in self-identification and desire, while others have stopped at the point of comfort with their own gender and freedom from same-sex desires. The "gay" movement's challenge to former homosexuals to, in essence, prove they aren't still innately "gay" is the height of absurdity since homosexual immutability was never proven in the first place. I know many personally.
A person's inclination toward a form of sexual conduct may not, for any number of reasons, be consciously chosen, but the mere existence of desire does not justify the act. To accept otherwise would be to validate adultery and pedophilia. Society has the right to require people to suppress harmful desires, even if it is difficult for them to do so.
In USA, According too the CDC 56,8%(conservatively) male who are infected with HIV are those who adopt homosexual behavior.
In American black women are the highest at risk for AIDS. Why? Research shows these women live in poor areas, but the biggest contribution is the women have boyfriend and/or husbands in prison. The men in while is prison engage in homosexual behavior(rape or forced consent) and contract the disease, and when released the men have sex with multiple female partners up to 20(low estimate), and the disease spreads further in the straight community, but the root cause is homosexual behavior.
Perhaps you were referring to Africa.
Let's look at this logically:
What is the difference between an average straight American and an average straight African?
The previous has better medical care, and is better educated
The latter does not and an average gay American also has better medical care and is better educated than an average straight African. AIDS is also passed on through breast milk and he American prison epidemic is prevalent in Africa too. See when you show all the facts an informed decision can be reached.
If you’re talking sheer number since homosexual make up 2.9 of earth population they are OVERrepresented in AIDS and STD stats.
According to the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (GLMA), “a significant percentage of MSMs—as many as one in three—have some incidence of unprotected anal sex.” According to a 2000-2002 study of HIV-positive MSM in 16 states, 30 percent of sexually active MSM reported engaging exclusively in oral sex, and 13 percent reported engaging exclusively in anal sex at their last sexual encounter, while 55 percent reported both behaviors. Overall, 40 percent reported insertive anal intercourse at their last sexual encounter.
Multiple Partners. Homosexuality is also associated with a higher number of lifetime sexual partners, which puts both men and women at an increased risk of disease. A 1995 Massachusetts Youth Risk Behavioral Surveillance found that gay, lesbian, and bisexual orientation was associated with having sexual intercourse before age 13, having four or more sexual partners in a lifetime, and experiencing sexual contact against their will.
MSM enrolled in a study published in the American Journal of Public Health in 2003 reported a median number of seven male sex partners over the previous six months, with 42.2 percent reporting 10 or more male partners. A 1997 study of young gay and bisexual men found that 91 percent reported an average of 43 male sexual partners in their lifetime.
Bug chasing. Another disturbing phenomenon among some MSM involves HIV-negative MSM who actively seek HIV infection by engaging in high-risk sexual activities with infected male partners. A 2003 Rolling Stone article brought national attention to “bug-chasing,” which the article described as “an intricate underground world that has sprouted, driven almost completely by the Internet, in which men who want to be infected with HIV get together with those willing to infect them.” Carlos, a “bug chaser” who claimed to have had several hundred sexual partners and said he regularly had sex with three or four HIV-positive men a week, told Rolling Stone, “I know what the risks are…But I think it turns the other guy on to know that I’m negative and that they’re bringing me into the brotherhood. That gets me off, too.”
I also write hubs too on this issue.
Animals do engage in homosexual behavior. That's just true.
Are people born gay? yes. Do such gay people tend to have gay sex? Yes. Is gay sex a behavior? yes.
Is being gay a behavior? no. --- unless "being straight" is a behavior.
Gay people don't want the right to marry because they have sex with each other, they want to get married because they love another person.
Your argument that "gay" is a behavior can be applied to anyone or anything
- is speech a behavior? yes. "thus those who partake in said behavior should not demand rights towards it"
- is being raped a behavior? yes. "thus those who partake in said behavior should not expect any protection for it"
- is loving your child a behavior? yes. "thus those that love their children shouldn't expect benefits".
... i could go on, but i think i've made my point.
Please provide one conclusive study that shows homosexuality is inborn and how such a behavioral gene is passed down.
Homosexuals are not a class of people any more than heterosexuals are a class of people. We are males and females, not gays and straights. In other words, we are males and females by anatomy, but gays and straights by behavior.
“The state does not endorse natural marriage because two people “love” one another. It endorses man-woman unions because they benefit the public welfare in the numerous ways we’ve seen (children, health, reduced social costs, etc.)
By their own admission, the main reason homosexuals want the government involved is to force acceptance of homosexuality on the public. I apologize for the repetition, but I cannot emphasize this enough. They want to change the law because they know that’s the way to change cultural attitudes about their behavior. In other words, state sanction will lead to social sanction. The approval of the law will lead to approval of homosexuality. Since many activists consider homosexual behavior their identity, any approval of homosexuality means approval of them as people. That’s what this is about. It’s not really about marriage but the validation marriage will bring them. But government doesn’t exist to validate the desires of its citizens when such validation would harm others or society. To the contrary—the main purpose of government is to protect its citizens from harm.”
ok, so you're arguing that gayness is not hereditary, and thus it isn't genetic.
This is wrong.
My friend is a lesbian. She kept getting this weird feeling- she liked a girl, but just kept thinking that this was "close friendship". She has repeatedly said "I kept trying to find that special man... but... nothing EVER clicked the way it did with my close friendship!!"
She was gay. She didn't understand why, it was just a thing she was. She was born gay.
It was genetic.
Before you say "that's not science" - please realize that ... yes it is - it is a documented by me, my friend, and her relatives, and her psychiatrists. That's what science is in this case.
The testimony of ex homosexuals that I know personally should count as well. Still waiting a genetic cause
http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs/usr/scotts … ngltf.html
This was a google search. ... not hard to do...
If you want to report back with any sort of response showing "counter research", I will not accept ANY research paid for, or supported by any religious organization: They are too biased to be used as research. this includes NARTH, or any other religious-based organization.
You will not the set the terms for this exchange. You’ve just cited skeptic tank and anti Christian sites but I will allow it, because I will not infringe of your right to free speech.
You accept a homosexual judges ruling on a homosexual issue now that’s is bias. Ask yourself this who has more to gain by lying about homosexuality being inborn or not?
There exists no truly objective means of determining whether a person is innately homosexual. One cannot take a blood test or DNA test to prove that he or she is "gay." We must depend entirely upon a person's claim that his or her homosexuality is innate. The taint of political self-interest alone makes such evidence wholly untrustworthy. Self-declared homosexuals can't even prove that they really believe that their homosexuality is innate. Instead, they argue that homosexuality must be innate because no one would choose to be "gay" and incur the resulting social stigma. This argument is invalid, since many people choose lifestyles that others condemn. Moreover, there are many homosexuals who freely admit that their lifestyle is a voluntary preference.
In fact homosexuals have tried anything and everything in order to try and 'prove' they are born homosexual. No 'scientific' study perform by homosexuals or homosexual advocates has made through the scientific method and has never been repeated, which leads us to believe homosexuals knowingly manipulate studies to come out as inclusive than they publish the very inconclusive study as absolute fact.
Narth is NOT a religious group. If you prove NARTH completely is sponsored by churches please do so
From NARTH home page. “Although the critics often describe NARTH as a right-wing, religious organization, NARTH is neither right-wing, nor religious. Rather, NARTH is a scientific, secular organization. The membership of NARTH is very diverse, as is the governing board, including people of many different faith traditions and people of no faith tradition. While NARTH members vary in their religious viewpoints, the commonality among its members is their commitment to defend the scientific research, despite the trend in our culture of promoting the message that people are born homosexual and cannot change. Some activists for gay causes believe that if the message that people can change is made known, it might lead to further discrimination. We believe that there are better ways of addressing discrimination than suppressing the message that change is possible. Suppressing this message only harms individuals who want other options for their lives. NARTH respects these individuals and upholds their rights to have accurate information.”
YOUR “sources” are a joke. I asked for CONCLUSIVE studies. There are so many “mights“, “mays“, “unsure“, “possible“, “inconclusive” “unknowns ” to count. And not one reference to actual fact.
http://www.drtraycehansen.com/Pages/wri … mesex.html
From the American Psychological Association (http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/sexual-orientation.aspx), a source that even you cited (your first video):
"What Causes a Person To Have a Particular Sexual Orientation?
There are numerous theories about the origins of a person's sexual orientation. Most scientists today agree that sexual orientation is most likely the result of a complex interaction of environmental, cognitive and biological factors. In most people, sexual orientation is shaped at an early age. There is also considerable recent evidence to suggest that biology, including genetic or inborn hormonal factors, play a significant role in a person's sexuality.
It's important to recognize that there are probably many reasons for a person's sexual orientation, and the reasons may be different for different people.
Is Sexual Orientation a Choice?
No, human beings cannot choose to be either gay or straight. For most people, sexual orientation emerges in early adolescence without any prior sexual experience. Although we can choose whether to act on our feelings, psychologists do not consider sexual orientation to be a conscious choice that can be voluntarily changed.
Can Therapy Change Sexual Orientation?
No; even though most homosexuals live successful, happy lives, some homosexual or bisexual people may seek to change their sexual orientation through therapy, often coerced by family members or religious groups to try and do so. The reality is that homosexuality is not an illness It does not require treatment and is not changeable. However, not all gay, lesbian, and bisexual people who seek assistance from a mental health professional want to change their sexual orientation. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual people may seek psychological help with the coming out process or for strategies to deal with prejudice, but most go into therapy for the same reasons and life issues that bring straight people to mental health professionals.
Can Lesbians, Gay Men, and Bisexuals Be Good Parents?
Yes. Studies comparing groups of children raised by homosexual and by heterosexual parents find no developmental differences between the two groups of children in four critical areas: their intelligence, psychological adjustment, social adjustment, and popularity with friends. It is also important to realize that a parent's sexual orientation does not indicate their children's.
Another myth about homosexuality is the mistaken belief that gay men have more of a tendency than heterosexual men to sexually molest children. There is no evidence to suggest that homosexuals or bisexuals molest children at a higher rate than heterosexuals."
A solid, non laughable source has just said everything that i've said. And more.
Here's an article discussing how the Exodus International is pretty much nonsense
http://onlinejournal.com/artman/publish … 2147.shtml
Here's an APA full-on report decrying the use of such ex-gay camps.
"No solid evidence exists that such change is likely, says the resolution, adopted by a 125-to-4 vote. The association said some research suggested that efforts to produce change could be harmful, inducing depression and suicidal tendencies.
You're. just. wrong.
I'm sorry to be the one to point it out, but you're just wrong.
"They are human beings. Duh! So are pedophiles, rapist, killers, thieves, liars and yet the behaviors are still wrong, destructive, dangerous and should not be promoted."
Yes, and the pedophiles, rapists, killers, and thieves are violating other people's rights, that is, committing crimes against other people.
Liars are only committing crimes against others in certain situations, like when they lie in court, or when they falsely advertise their products, or when they are defrauding people. (That is, when they are victimizing others with their lies.)
Adults engaging in consensual sex (whether homo or hetero) are not.
Every single thing Evan has said about being gay (or not being gay) is factually correct. He's right; you're wrong. Accept it. You're entitled to your opinion that gayness in inherently bad, but you're not entitled to your own facts.
My only disagreement with Evan in this case is in his interpretation of what "equal protection" means, and his conclusion that it doesn't mean that gay people should be allowed to get married if they want to. I disagree with this, but at least his conclusions are based on facts and not mythology, falsehoods or whatever it is that Spiderpam is basing her conclusions on.
OK, so everyone seems to be waiting for me to respond...
Before I begin, I DO hope that gays will be allowed to marry. I just am wary of a single person having such a dramatic influence in an entire country's law structure -- especially when that person isn't elected.
Let me also point out that this entire issue WOULD be moot if our government didn't claim the right to legislate on marriages - this is but ONE MORE example of governmental tyranny.
Kerryg- thanks for the list of 1138 laws and stipulations about marriage, along with the subsections that pertain to different TYPES of laws. However, you had a snippy attitude! I really am NOT trying to be a jerk here.
I was going through the list, and it seems that there are two subsections that could qualify as "protection of the law" IMHO.
-Threats against spouses of various federal employees is a federal crime
-domestic violence intervention/protection orders
The first one... is... kind of a "special instance" sort of thing. I would argue that it doesn't really apply to the situation, but that's up to interpretation.
The second one, however, is quite an interesting twist. Protection from spousal abuse!! Does the fact that gay people can't get married mean that they don't have equal protection under the law when it pertains to spousal abuse?... I would argue it doesn't.... But ... yeesh, that's a weird one!
So -- I just deleted the response I was about to give, because I was about to quote the 14th Amendment. I re-read it, and I looked at what Kerryg said the judge quoted as "why Prop 8 was wrong". I believe Kerryg's quote was the "equal protection under the law" argument...
... But now that I re read the 14th amendment, I see now that the judge is wrong to base her argument on THAT ONE PART.
Look at the what she based her argument off of:
No State shall ... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
I disagreed with this logic. Equal protection of the law and marriage just don't work together.
so THAT'S why I disagreed with her.
But now read THIS part of the 14th Amendment:
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States
If she had based her decision off of THIS part of the Amendment, I could agree - it clearly says "privileges". I would consider marriage a privilege, wouldn't you?
But then, there's ANOTHER area of the 14th amendment that, if she had based her argument, she would have been wrong -
nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law
- California was trying to use Due process of the law to deprive people of liberty, unfortunately. They had the system of laws in place, they had the voters vote on it... that sounds like "due process".
So now I'm really confused. The same amendment seems to disagree with itself ... 3 times...
Well, either way, I hope the governmental tyranny will end, and that gay people will be allowed to marry. I just want it done right: the legislative branch legislates, the judicial branch does not.
Marriage is NOT a government issue, and it should NOT BE A FEDERAL ISSUE.
The judicial branch is designed to prevent the legislative from overriding the Constitution.
I agree that marriage should not be a government issue. Unfortunately, States gave attached certain rights to married couples and those rights ARE a Federal issue.
I would love - not lying - to hear the rights that you claim are federal issues when pertaining towards marriage.
I give up. No point in continuing.
The SJC will decide this. I hope Jim is wrong, but if not, homosexuals in CA should just leave the State.
I wonder what that would do to its economy.
I don't care if homosexuals marry.
I don't like an openly gay federal judge ruling on an issue such as gay marriage.
Would you be comfortable with a pedophile ruling on a issue concerning pedophilia?
An evangelical christian judge ruling on separation of church and state or god forbid abortion?
This judge does not have the final word, so no, I have no problem.
no point? I actually wanted to hear what the rights you were talking about were! I re-read the 14th amendment and was about to say "nope, no equal protection"... but then I looked at the other areas of the amendment and saw that there were 2 arguments FOR prop 8, and 1 against.
If you can show me the "equal protection under the law" that would make it 1 for and 2 against.
I really DO want to see if there is a lack of equal protection of the law - I would change my mind if I saw this.
i did- there wasn't really anything discussing equal protection under the law - just the benefits / punishments of being married.
That's more of a "rights" sort of thing. But I guess i could just be reading "protection" too narrowly.
And again: if equal protection does not mean equal rights, what does it mean???
They key phrase is "due process of law" ... Prop was not an arbitrary decision by a rogue governor or some overzealous sheriff.
They had the *right* to oppose the passage of the Prop without fear of government retaliation or intimidation ... no pink panthers at the voting booths and no klansmen either...
They had the *right* to present their case to the people ... and they did it quite well I understand and spent a good chunk of change ...
They had the *right* to a fair ballot box.
Those are *rights* the *right* is not to have the vote come out the way you want just because the judge happens to have a personal bias.
Nobody was denied due process.
And yet the ads for Proposition 8 were loaded with outright lies and misdirection. That's where that "good chunk of change" went.
Not having seen the ads, I can only imagine that like all political ads, both sides probably put the best possible spin on their position and the worst possible spin on their opponents.
Due process doesn't protect laws deemed to interfere with a fundamental right, regardless of whether due process was followed or not. Marriage equality has a long-established precedent in Constitutional law as a fundamental right.
The issue became whether gay marriages constituted an expression of that fundamental right or the creation of a new right, and the proponents failed to make their case. It's a shame that Walker is gay, because it will lead to accusations of bias, but it is worth noting that he's not a blind follower of the so-called "homosexual agenda" and has ruled against gay rights in the past, to the point that many liberals opposed him when he was first nominated (by Reagan) and confirmed (by GHW Bush).
For all the millions Prop 8 proponents poured into getting the initial law passed, you'd think they could have afforded a better lawyer.
"What is the harm to the procreation purpose you outlined of allowing same-sex couples to get married?" Walker asked.
"My answer is, I don't know. I don't know," Cooper answered.
I've been an expert witness in Federal court, one of things I can tell you is that the law and the facts have little to do with each other....
I spent I don't know how long with attorneys anticipating questions and making sure my answers were truthful and factual but did not give the opponent a way to twist them ... I was quoted SO out of context in motions by the opponent ...
So, yeah, they should have had a better lawyer.
Where did you get your constitutional law degree?
I read the damned document. That's where.
That is funny. I love your interpretation but on the basis of your right and everyone else is wrong kind of seems well narrowly thought as opposed to narrowly read.
You are here painting yourself as an expert in law and interpreting laws for everyone. You do not have a law degree and this has gone beyond the normal argument. This thread went OT a long time ago when it was planted with constitutional law and you using it as your pulpit.
What are your credentials and why should we listen?
Why do you need credentials to read the Constitution? It's written in English, and it's pretty easy to understand if you just read the damn thing.
The constitution is written so that people know what their government is allowed to do.
If we rely upon "listening to what others have to say", we'll live in George Orwell's Animal Farm.
"Yes, comrades, all animals ARE equal, but it MEANS that SOME animals are MORE equal than others! Don't worry, it makes sense: I have a law degree!!"
I'm not "painting myself as an expert" - go back and read EVERYTHING I've EVER written about the Constitution - I never ONCE claimed that I was an expert. I just read the thing and have seen that our government is abusing it.
The reason you need credentials is that you are arguing against everyone and calling everyone wrong. We need to read an interpret and ........I agree. However why should we listen to you?
That is the question. It is the same "Big Brother is Watching" if we are listening to you. Isn't it?
What was ridiculous in my mind and it seemed kind arrogant was to speak of yourself as a justice and to say how narrowly you are reading and interpreting laws for us.
That is the point. It is not to not read.
You are painting yourself as someone with more knowledge than everyone else on the board. You are going around and telling everyone they are wrong. I am not saying that you don't have the ability to read the constitution or even have a discussion.
You just plain don't have the credibility to tell everyone else they are wrong. Simple as that.
Are you just looking for a fight Ben? It frankly looks like this...
I'm not claiming myselfnas smarternthan anyone else! The heck are you talking about ?
Your augment boils down " i don't wAnt to hear your argument". You're arguing that because my argument is different than yours I shouldn't bother posting my opinion because I'll sound like I'm calling myself better than everyone else.
I never once made any claim that I'm smarter, I'm just saying that the 14 th amendment doesn't necessarily mean that a person can get married to anyone else.
I can't speak for anyone else, but what I'm finding really frustrating about your contributions to this thread is that you're accusing Judge Walker of amending the Constitution by himself and acting as if this is some new and dangerous thing, when I and several others have pointed out repeatedly that his ruling was based very carefully (and very deliberately, I'm sure) on decades of precedent establishing that the 14th Amendment can be used to overrule state marriage laws deemed to be unjustly discriminatory.
Like it or not, the Constitution is a living document and precedent plays a major role in how it is interpreted in individual cases.
As someone in an interracial marriage myself, it's baffling to me that you can't or won't acknowledge this, given that it affects every single day of your life in the most intimate possible way. In much of the US both my marriage and your engagement would be illegal if these precedents didn't exist.
Judge Walker has done nothing inappropriate; he has, in fact, done exactly what he was appointed to do, which is interpret the Constitution.
I made a statement. I didn't have an argument. This is my statement:
"What was ridiculous in my mind and it seemed kind arrogant was to speak of yourself as a justice and to say how narrowly you are reading and interpreting laws for us."
I will go back and explain this in a second but let me say you are proving my point.
"Your aurguement boils down " i don't wAnt to hear your argument". You're arguing that because my argument is different than yours I shouldn't bother posting my opinion because I'll sound like I'm calling myself better than everyone else.
1) I don't have an argument.
2) You put words in my mouth. This is a big assumption and you do it often to other people. You are saying that I am doing this because our arguments don't concur. I don't have an argument. You don't have a point of departure. What you do is place it in the other persons position so you can argue it. You use both the tangential and the straw man argument often.
3) I am not telling you not to post. I am telling you to discuss with people and not to tell them they are wrong or to tell them what their position is. Discuss it and don't force it.
To restate my statement. You have been one this the whole thread and telling people that the are "bad ugly or wrong". Then all the sudden and in a not a too subtle way you speak how narrowly you are reading the constitution as if you are a judge. I thought that was ludicrous and it is an arrogant statement that says that you are better than everyone else. If I got that wrong I am sorry.
That does not change the fact that you aren't discussing and you are putting words into other peoples mouths and you are then calling them wrong.
oh give me a break.
you're telling me that this quote from you doesn't have an argument in it?
"You are here painting yourself as an expert in law and interpreting laws for everyone. You do not have a law degree and this has gone beyond the normal argument. This thread went OT a long time ago when it was planted with constitutional law and you using it as your pulpit.
What are your credentials and why should we listen?"
I'm done arguing with you. The one putting words in another's mouth is you. You're claiming that "[I'm] painting myself as an expert in law..." Then you demand that no one should read what I write (which is totally fine, i Don't care if you ignore what i write) when you say "What are your credentials, and why should we listen?"
If you want me to believe that these words aren't pointed, then I'm afraid I'm just not that gullible.
There are quite a few people here trying to interpret the Constitution.
Nothing wrong with reading the Constitution. But that's only a start because to understand its current meaning you need to read also the key Constitutional Supreme Court and other federal court decisions interpreting the document in light of the significant changes in the country's circumstances since it was written.
Yes they are. Social Security. Familial rights in hospital settings. Funerary rights. Inheritance rights. Property rights.
The list goes on and on.
True, a power of attorney can work around these limitations, but such power would have to be granted for each specific right requested.
A very expensive proposition that marrieds do not face. The simple fact that same sex couples would have to pay so much more to have the same rights as heterosexual couples violates the equal protection clause.
i'm sorry, i keep using the pronoun "she" - the judge is male. Sorry for my mistake.
OK this is where reasonable people can actually disagree reasonably...
I'm not in favor of gay marriage, but I'm also not in favor of a Federal ban on it .... for the same reasons....
Reasonable people disagreeing reasonably, how refreshing.
Aren't you interpreting the Equal Protection Clause awfully literally? It's not referring to direct protection from bodily harm, it's referring to protection of individual rights. It's supposed to prevent a state from passing a law that unfairly benefits or disadvantages one group over another without rational basis.
For example, in Loving vs Virginia, I believe one of the issues was that all interracial marriages involving white people were prohibited, while blacks, Hispanics, Native Americans, and Asians were allowed to marry each other but not whites.
In this case, the plaintiffs argued that Prop. 8 discriminated on the basis of sex and sexual orientation, and the judge a)agreed and b)found no rational basis for allowing the discrimination to continue. The discussion of the Equal Protection issues start on page 119 of the PDF file, if you want to read what the actual ruling says.
Concerning the Due Process Clause, it does not protect legislation deemed to interfere with a "fundamental right," due process or not. Again, Loving vs. Virginia was one of at least six precedents Judge Walker cited as determining marriage to be a fundamental right. The Due Process stuff starts on page 111.
PS - Sorry about the snippy tone earlier. I have probably had this argument one too many times. It's nice at least to be arguing with someone who doesn't consider homosexuality an abomination, though. *g*
"No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States"
--this part is against prop 8
"nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law"
-- this part is FOR prop 8
"nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws"
-- this part is FOR prop 8,
Kerryg: "[the judge]...found no rational basis for allowing the discrimination to continue."
-- unfortunately it's not about rationality - it's about what the damned constitution says.
The judge: "Still less can Proposition 8 survive the strict scrutiny required by plaintiffs’ due process claim."
-- i would think that a state-wide vote on the issue qualifies as "due process"....
Perhaps I am reading the passage too narrowly. I dunno. It's just that I would imagine they would have wrote something like "have equal protection under the law, have equal privileges, and equal rights."
I'm just amazed, however, that they only wrote protection.
anyway, I hope they'll be able to marry. I hate governmental tyranny.
"unfortunately it's not about rationality - it's about what the damned constitution says."
Yes and no.
"[F]undamental rights may not be submitted to [a] vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections." (West Virginia State Board of Education v Barnette)
"When legislation burdens the exercise of a right deemed to be fundamental, the government must show that the intrusion withstands strict scrutiny." (Zablocki v Redhail)
From Judge Walker's decision: "Under strict scrutiny, the state bears the burden of producing evidence to show that Proposition 8 is narrowly tailored to a compelling government interest. (see Carey v Population Services International) [...] The minimal evidentiary presentation made by proponents does not meet the heavy burden of production necessary to show that Proposition 8 is narrowly tailored to a compelling government interest. Proposition 8 cannot, therefore, withstand strict scrutiny."
"i would think that a state-wide vote on the issue qualifies as "due process"...."
Again, the due process clause does NOT protect laws deemed to interfere with a fundamental right, regardless of whether due process was actually followed or not.
Look, the problem is that in California people are concerned that this issue will have a negative impact on the classroom.
As someone who has taught in California I can assure you that the kids need to focus on the basics and not bullsh** like this issue.
I think I need to sue because educated, unemployed white males are discriminated against by employers.
No one said gays could not be legal partners. They should focus their energy on more important issues.
I won't even get into people on the internet claiming to know what science is or what is and what is not constitutional or the rest of it.
I WILL say that considering that homosexuals are only a small part of the population I doubt their leaving ANY location would have a major impact.
By the way, shouldn't the title of this forum be FED Rules Prop 8 Unconstitutional?
After all, wasn't it just the action of ONE gay FEDERAL judge as opposed to the will of the people?
that's kind of been my argument - re read some of the stuff I posted here.
This thread has gotten a little out of control and off focus and I'm not sure I can follow all of it any more. Doug Hughes has a great post explaining the basis of Walker's opinion earlier in the thread, although I believe the opinion itself is self-explanatory. I urge everyone to read it if you care enough about this issue to opine on it. When you read a legal opinion and attempt to follow its reasoning, you are not obliged to be persuaded. But it is hard to reduce the legal process to facile comments like AC's recent "After all, wasn't just the action of ONE gay FEDERAL judge as opposed to the will of the people?" I am at a loss as to why anyone believes it is relevant that this was a federal judge. Is it because he is not subject to popular political pressure because he is appointed for life? Why do you think that is a bad thing? It was his job to construe and apply the Constitution, not apply majority will. There are protections afforded in the federal constitution (and in the state constitution) that are designed to safeguard liberties despite majority will.
Pointing out that Walker is gay is in the character of an ad hominem attack. Walker has issued opinions unfavorable to gay issues in the past...indeed, liberals attempted to block his appointment to the federal bench because they labeled him as anti-gay. He often labeled as conservative and libertarian. Supporters of Proposition 8 could have done a lot worse with judges sitting in the Northern District of California than Vaughn Walker, much worse. They were lucky to get him, and lost anyway. If you believe that political leanings affect the way that judges rule (and they do to some extent) expect a panel of three straight appellate judges to affirm this ruling at the Ninth Circuit.
The equal protection analysis is pretty straightforward. Supporters of Prop. 8 have not shown that the state has a legitimate basis for letting straight people marry but not allowing gay people to marry. If Proposition 8 did not allow anyone to marry it would be more defensible, but it does not do that. Sure, supporters have come up with rationalizations of why the state has a legitimate interest in singling out one class of its citizens and denying them the right to marry whomever they choose, but whenever laws are applied unequally you can come up with rationalizations (i.e., "mon dieu, think of the children!"). I would argue that forbidding people the right to marry may have substantive due process problems, but that is a harder argument and not the one that Walker based his opinion on.
From Rabbi Michael Lerner:
"Homosexuals were with us in Auschwitz and were persecuted along with Jews throughout Western societies for the past several thousand years, so we stand with them in the struggle for full acceptance and full legal equality, including marriage equality, in the 21st century. But even had they not shared our fate, the denial of rights and the double standards used to justify such denials are always a threat to Jews as well as to everyone else on the planet!"
The rights of homosexuals are supported by an overwhelming majority of the American Jewish community. That support is not only based on a memory of shared victimhood, but also on the core values of our own Jewish tradition. The Torah's command to 'love our neighbor' and 'love the Other (stranger, in Hebrew: ger)' are intrinsic to how most American Jews understand our Jewish obligations today."
The claim by some fundamentalists that gay love is forbidden by the Bible is itself an interpretation and a selective reading of Biblical text. Few of those fundamentalists demand that their society take literally the command to forgive all loans every seventh year (the Sabbatical Year) or to redistribute the land every fiftieth year (the Jubilee) or to not light a fire in their homes on the Sabbath, or for that matter, the command to not destroy the trees of your enemy when engaged in warfare, but they selectively choose this command for special attention."
As to the literalists, well, then be literal: the command says 'Thou shalt not lie with a man the way thou liest with a woman." Ok, fine, but that doesn't say thou shalt not lie with a man, but only that one must do so in a different way than one lies with a woman. The contrast is clear in Leviticus, because all of the other commands about sexual behavior in the same section are unconditional 'thou shalt not lie with x or y or z' but only here is the command extended in that way to qualify how it should be applied. While this interpretation is not the only one possible, it demonstrates why Jews have been involved in transforming the meanings of Biblical texts in accord with our own evolving understanding and evolving ethical sensibilities. So, for example, the rabbis of the Talmud, when faced with the Biblical injunction to stone to death a rebellious son, were so uncomfortable with the morality of that command that they proclaimed, shamelessly transforming the literal meaning of the text, that 'a rebelious son never existed and was never created', i.e. that whatever the Torah was referencing was fine, but it was in fact not to be confused with what we mean in our daily life experience by a rebellious child."
One of the many, many reasons I converted to Judaism about a year ago (not to have this discussion become a religious one...).
Love the "Rescue Marriage" proposition, as well. It's also got my vote!
Missed this earlier - thanks for a very interesting read!
I just attended my first Jewish wedding a couple months ago and loved the ceremony. The cantor had a beautiful voice and I really enjoyed some of the little differences from Christian ceremonies, such as both the bride and groom being walked down the aisle by both their parents. I understand orthodox Jews have plenty of their own brand of horrible sexism, but it's really nice to see such gender egalitarianism among Reform Jews. Hopefully, gays and lesbians will soon be able to legally take part in that beautiful ceremony too.
Thou shall not lie with a man like he lieth with a woman... I wonder if that had more to do with feelings, nothing more than feelings, trying to forget my feelings of. lol
"Honey, does this dress make me look fat?" Man answer, "um..no"
"Hey man do you think these pants are too tight." Man answer, "Why the hell are you asking me that question! You are hung like an elephant, okay?!" lololol
We Reform Jews already can. (The URJ has been a long-time supporter of same-sex marriages, although it's a rabbi's choice whether to officiate a same-sex marriage or not)
And agreed that the Orthodox are backwards in terms of gender equality and a number of other things...fortunately, they're a small minority, among American Jews, at least.
They already can. Just pick the "right" synagogue and Rabbi.
So if the majority of people WANT something then two people can get one already biased federal judge to tell the rest of the people they are not allowed to have things the way they want them? It sounds like an idea that could lead to trouble.
I wonder if there are any gay sci-fi geeks? probably not enough . . . the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few . . .
It was an idea that led to trouble. Trouble between Great Britain and one of her many colonies.
Rights enumerated in the constitution ARE NOT subject to the will of the people. If they were they would no longer be rights.
"Rights enumerated in the constitution ARE NOT subject to the will of the people."
OF COURSE THEY ARE. The rights come from the people, the Constitution is just a piece of paper with out the people. In fact the power to govern is granted by the people. If the people so choose they can elect representatives who will ammend or interpret the Constitution as they see fit.
All that being said, here are my thoughts.
FIRST, why anyone would want to get married is beyond me. The state and fed only use this as a tax penalty.
SECOND, The Judge was well with in his right to rule on the arguments. That's his job. He heard the arguments and made his judgement based on his interpretation of the "Equal Protection Clause".
THIRD, I find it ironic that the FED has NO law regarding marriage. DOMA was determined unconstitutional. Yet it has usurped the State, it did so based on the 14th Amendment. Which basically gutted the 10th Ammendment. IMO, this is the real constitutional question.
This is exactly right. It is a state rights issue, all laws regarding marriage are.
Going by this judges ruling you will have to get rid of any state law concerning marriage.
It is not going to happen.
Not if it denies one group equal protection over another group.
It does not deny any one of legal age to marry.
DOMA that you mentioned is getting struck down everywhere as it should.
It is not the Federal governments jurisdiction.
A lot of people not only deny it they assume it's possible without consequences.
It's all simply this. Some people are so set on having things a certain way that they cannot possibly see that the very attitude they embrace could come back and bite them firmly in the butt...and take a fair chunk of flesh in the process.
Denying a fundamental right to one group, and having that stick, means that any group can have it's rights abridged as well.
This is that slippery slope I keep trying to point out.
LOL. We obviously hang out in different corners of sci-fi fandom, because about half the sci-fi geeks I know are gay or bi!
I guess the two lesbians who started the lawsuit must not be Star trek fans.
When the majority of people want the rights of a minority group to be denied for no rational reason, what they want doesn't count. Go read the 5th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution.
Its pretty obvious the federal government has let the states determine who can marry and who cant.
How was the California law any different?
Attempts to change Federal law begin at the state level. They always have and always should.
What federal law are you talking about?
There isn't a federal marriage license.
It was left to the individual states to determine laws/rules whatever concerning marriage.
Explain to me how this is any different.
There is a federal law called the Defense of Marriage Act that does just that.
That does not trump the equal protection clause. The constitution is the "top of the food chain" where law is concerned. It is, in and of itself, the law of the United States. It determines the rights every citizen should expect, regardless of state of birth, and relegates those things not covered in the constitution to the states or the people.
Bingo! You get the prize to the most relevant question on the forum!
Because it violated the rights of a minority group, that's why.
No it didn't.
Marriage is not a fundamental right.
Laws and rules decide who can and cannot marry.
If it was a right anyone could marry anyone, and that is not the case.
Sorry, a long line of judges disagree. Judge Walker is not the first, and is unlikely to be the last. Nor did either legal team in this case dispute the fundamental right of marriage.
The freedom to marry is recognized as a fundamental right protected by the Due Process Clause. See, for example, Turner v Safely, 482 US 78, 95 (1987) (“[T]he decision to marry is a fundamental right” and marriage is an “expression[ ] of motional support and public commitment.”); Zablocki, 434 US at 384 (1978) (“The right to marry is of fundamental importance for all individuals.”); Cleveland Board of Education v LaFleur, 414 US 632, 639-40 (1974) (“This Court has long recognized that freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage and family life is one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.”); Loving v Virginia, 388 US 1, 12 (1967) (The “freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men.”); Griswold v Connecticut, 381 US 479, 486 (1965) (“Marriage is a coming together for better or for worse, hopefully enduring, and intimate to the degree of being sacred. It is an association that promotes a way of life, not causes; a harmony in living, not political faiths; a bilateral loyalty, not commercial or social
projects. Yet it is an association for as noble a purpose as any
involved in our prior decisions.”).
Lets try this, can I marry more than one person at a time?
Can I marry a 13 year old without their parents consent?
God I hope not. No.
If marriage was a fundamental right I could do the above.
50 States have 50 different laws on who can marry who, do you think the Supreme court will change that?
Marriage is a fundamental right, but that doesn't mean you can exercise your right to it by infringing the rights of others. The right to hold property is seen as a fundamental right in this country, too, but that doesn't mean you can just go take somebody else's.
Returning to your specific examples, laws prohibiting underage marriage (both in general and without parental permission) are legitimate because in this case the right of one person to marry as he or she pleases infringes on the right of the minor child, who is not considered legally capable of giving consent to such a marriage.
I do not think laws prohibiting polygamy/polyandry between consenting adults would hold up under serious challenge in a court of law.
Let's try this:
Can I vote for more than one person at a time? No.
Can a 13-year-old vote? No.
If voting were a fundamental right, the answers to those questions would be yes. Clearly it would be okay for a state to bar gay people from voting, since I can't vote for more than one person at a time, and a 13-year-old can't do it.
If you see sexual preference is a protected federal right, on what grounds do you oppose pedophilia? Or do you?
From a strict interpretation of your argument, that's where this looks like it could go.
Correct, So far, sexual orientation is NOT offered the same protection as minority and religious groups. Gay rights currently fall under whats called "Intermediate Scrutiny".
If I automatically lose an argument by bandying about the term "Nazi" could we please retire the pedophilia argument on the same grounds?
The one thing has nothing whatever to do with gay marriage.
I tried to get Kerryg to see how the "If we allow couples of different races to marry whats next" argument had some merit.
Merit may be the wrong term.
Well, the whats next is same gender marriage.
So is it a stretch to say maybe pedophiles will sue to be able to marry children, you know, equal protection.
This is a states right issue, just that simple.
First of all, I'm asking a question and showing where an argument *could* go if not clarified.
Second, clearly the very act of my asking the question makes you uncomfortable.
Third I will not NOT ask a question because someone ELSE called you a NAZI or said you couldn't say NAZI or whatever. If NAZI was a legit point, then you should have the right to make it.
The question I'm asking and nobody seems willing to answer is this:
1. Are there lines to be drawn on sexual behavior?
2. If NO ... then why have any laws on the books at all?
3. If YES ... then who gets to choose what the lines are and where they are drawn?
4. If YES and SOMEONE gets to choose ... why does it get to be a Federal judge and not seven million other people?
And finally, why are YOUR morals (i.e. homophobia is "WRONG") better than MY morals (i.e. homosexual behavior is "WRONG") and what gives you the right to judge my morals?
Uh. Not really. Where did you get that idea?
Ah, you did not understand my statement. Let me try a different tack. Pedophilia has nothing to do with homosexuality. Why do you bring it up then?
Who's drawing them and who gave them the right to draw them?
I don't spy on you in your bedroom or presume to know enough about you to criticize you for technique, position, or preference. Frankly speaking, I really don't want to know.
There should be some privacy in one's life. This is certainly one area where anyone should expect privacy.
From what you've been writing I guess that'd be you.
This has already been answered...many times in fact.
If your morals impinge on my rights then yes, I'll judge you your so called morals.
Honestly I'll judge you anyway. I just may never tell you what I think out of politeness.
Obviously you have missed every one of my points ... as I seem unable to make them clearly, I will simply apologize for my lack of communication skills.
If that makes you feel better sure.
But the fact is you are saying the same thing over and over again, slightly differently each time.
That does not mean I haven't read them. That simply means I disagree with you no matter how you present your view.
" And finally, why are YOUR morals (i.e. homophobia is "WRONG") better than MY morals (i.e. homosexual behavior is "WRONG") and what gives you the right to judge my morals?"
Nobody's trying to stop you from being scared of gay people. It's silly IMO, but you have the right not to associate with them, and have the right not to engage in homosexual behavior if you disapprove of it. But you don't get to prevent competent adults from engaging in consensual homosexual behavior. And that's what's wrong with your position.
It would be wrong for, oh, say, Neil Patrick Harris, to make you go to a gay wedding and shake the couple's hands in congratulations afterward. You don't approve of homosexuality, and you shouldn't be made to act as though you do.
But it would also be wrong for you to stop Neil Patrick Harris from marrying his boyfriend, assuming both Neil and his squeeze are competent, consenting adults. They're gay, and approve of gayness. You may not stop them, since they aren't hurting you or taking your stuff or stopping you from living your life as you see fit.
My understanding is that the majority of psychologists do believe that preferential pedophilia is an innate sexual orientation, and if that's the case, then banning it would be as pointless as banning blue eyes.
It is legitimate, however, to ban pediophiliac behavior because it does produce inherent harm to society, in the form of sexual abuse of underage children.
Homosexual behavior, on the other hand, does not, provided it occurs between consenting adults. Attempts to legislate it are therefore illegitimate.
There are a whole lot of laws about homosexual behavior on the books throughout this country.
They have been there for many,many years.
I don't know what you mean by "Attempts to legislate it are therefore illegitimate."
They are not illegitimate, they are law.
And these laws are being struck down as unconstitutional, right and left, just as laws institutionalizing racism were before them, and laws institutionalizing discrimination against women before that.
Every state has rules regarding marriage so it isn't a fundamental right.
Jim, I give up. There are better primers for federalism on the Internet than I can provide. Particularly right now given the popular interest in the subject. I am not sure why you believe that it is "plain" that the federal constitution does not fetter the ability of California voters to deny marriage to one class of people but permit it to another. The U.S. Supreme Court has entered the most intimate areas of our lives, including the bedroom. Federalism does not work the way that you think it does. If California forbade all people to marry, irrespective of sexual orientation, there would not be the same equal protection concerns. I think, however, in that case many proponents of Proposition 8 would disagree with your statement that "marriage  isn't a fundamental right." Indeed, they may be horrified -- no less so if a majority of Californians voted to eliminate the institution of marriage for everyone.
Bdazzler, a comparison of homosexuality to pedophilia, is in my opinion, rooted in homophobia. Yours. In case the distinction is lost on you, pedophilia entails sexual relations with a child...a child cannot give consent to sex. No one said "sexual preference is a protected federal right." This has nothing to do with "sexual preference" at all. Sigh. I need to stop visiting the forums.
So, when it comes right down to it, I don't have the right to ask a question without being accused .... because the very act of asking the question shows un-approved thinking ...
And if it's not about sexual preference, what is it about?
First, I have no idea what this means "plain" Care to explain?
Second, California voters didn't deny marriage to one class of people but permit it to another.
All Californians of the legal age can marry.
This is a states right issue and the Supreme court will see that.
that's kind of been my entire point... but then there's that 14th amendment that contradicts itself.
Either way, it's tyranny that Gays can't marry - whether the ban be state or federal.
Its not tyranny in California, unless you call a majority of voters tyrannical.
i would EASILY and READILY call "tyranny of the masses" tyranny.
If X takes away Y's rights without the consent of X, then it's tyranny.
No it isn't.
It is a vote, somebody has to lose.
Not when the vote violates the Constitution. That's the issue you keep ignoring.
It truly amazes me how many conservatives think that "majority rules" is the end. It is not, and our system was designed precisely to prevent that.
In ONE judges opinion it violates the constitution.
As you accurately pointed out the other day, he is not the final say regarding this.
You keep forgetting that.
I don't forget it, Jim. But, unlike you, I won't be complaining about "activist judges" or "bias" or anything else if the final ruling goes against my opinion.
This judge is the first step. I hope it sticks.
You should be complaining, this judge is biased and that never results in good/fair rulings.
And I fully believe when this is overturned that you will complain about the conservatives on the Supreme Court.
If it is upheld then it is the law of the land, it won't affect me in any way.
Are there any asexual federal judges?
I believe all the Supreme Court justices are heterosexual, so that rules them out. I guess bias abounds in the judiciary.
Or maybe you take issue with the fact that Walker is a conservative?
Conservative/Liberal it doesn't matter.
He is biased because of his sexuality.
I believe there would be LESS bias in a heterosexual judge because he/she have nothing to lose or gain.
Are you serious? That's like arguing that white people are the only people who can judge cases having to do with racism, or that only men can judge cases of sexism.
The reason that those are against allowing gays to marry is because they believe heterosexuality is superior and that heterosexuals should be granted more rights than gays/lesbians.
Thus, heterosexuals have "something to lose" by granting gays/lesbians equality, namely their currently privileged position within society.
"Thus, heterosexuals have "something to lose" by granting gays/lesbians equality, namely their currently privileged position within society."
Equality? I don't know what century in which you live but Homosexuals are equal within the minds of most people.
In twenty years homosexuality will probably be just as accepted as heterosexuality, we cannot change the times in which we live.
I really don't care if homosexuals marry, I have a problem with a gay judge deciding what is anti-gay or unconstitutional as it pertains to homosexuals. The bias is glaring.
Yes, I understand your line of thinking: gay judges shouldn't decide if a law is anti-gay, any more than women judges shouldn't decide if a law is sexist, or Asian judges shouldn't decide if a law is racist.
I guess that's why the Supreme Court was run exclusively by white, straight men until recent decades - they're the only ones who can be totally unbiased.
Obviously you don't understand my line of thinking.
Your reaction is typical, find some way to call someone a bigot.
The Supreme Court is NOT made up of just white men, it includes Women and African American.
Absolutely gay judges should not be deciding cases that concern what affects the gay community. A judge is supposed to be fair, this ruling is not a case of the judge having nothing to gain.
You are still pointless to discuss things with when you fail to read what others wrote.
If homosexual judges shouldn't be deciding cases that concern the gay community, then heterosexual judges shouldn't be deciding cases that affect the straight community.
"Heterosexual" does not equal "neutral."
Yes, NOW it includes women and minorities. Not that your conservative brethren of yesteryear didn't work their tails off to prevent that, of course. That is automatic, Jim, because conservatives are ALWAYS on the wrong side of social issues and never can see they were wrong until decades after we ram it down their throats.
And we will ram this down, too. And conservatives will grumble about it for a century or so and then, after finally accepting reality, they will pretend that they were never against it at all - it was the "process" or some other nonsensical reason.
No doubt some future political clone of yours will dig up your "it is the judge" post as evidence of how enlightened conservatives of this day were. Yeah, right- we know better. Always the same tune, just new lyrics.
What's to understand? Anyone you agree with is right (in your eyes) and everyone else is wrong. Studied intelligent reasons for your views aren't included.
If the shoe fits...
Finally it is!
This is absurd. By your reasoning male judges should not be deciding cases that affect women and female judges should not be deciding cases that affect males.
A judge is supposed to be fair. If a ruling affects the opposite gender the judge should recuse him/her-self.
But see, Jim is no bigot, because he doesn't care if gays marry or not. He just wants to be sure that voters can vote away any rights they don't like gays to have.
Now, you might think Jim is one of those "majority rules" types, but no, he insists he doesn't believe that. Except in this case, maybe, that is where things get muddy.
Confused? Me too. But I get confused by conservative thinking all the time. It is a weakness of ny liberal mind, I'm sure. If only I had something like Fox News to tell me what to think - oh, I forgot: apparently almost none of the conservatives here ever watch Fox.
So, to sum up: majority may or may not rule and very few conservatives can afford basic cable. It is indeed a very strange world.
And seriously: I have never seen anything that would ever make me think Jim is a bigot. I am not so sure about some others, but that would surprise me. He is a classic, stand firm conservative who will have to be dragged kicking and screaming into the modern world, but that's not bigotry.
This judge is not impartial, can't see it can you?
You can't see it either. You assume he must be biased.
His ruling is the proof he is biased.
His even hearing the case proves his bias.
So no judge should hear any case? Now you are ranting.
Jim, the only outcome that would made him "unbiased" and impartial in your eyes is if he had ruled in a way that you agree with. It is easy to throw this accusation without any facts. One could ask you to point to the flaws in Walker's reasoning. Or one could ask you to point to any other evidence of bias. But that may be asking too much.
Walker was a Reagan appointee. He has issued several rulings contrary to the interests of gay rights groups, and was originally opposed in his appointment to his federal bench out of concern that he was "anti-gay." Ironic, no? He is neither an activist judge nor a progressive. Indeed, his reputation is the opposite...conservative with libertarian leanings.
Maybe a well-respected federal judge examined the facts and the law and simply ruled in a way that you disagree with. That is not evidence of bias.
"and was originally opposed in his appointment to his federal bench out of concern that he was "anti-gay." Ironic, no?"
He was appointed by Reagan and only liberals would claim a gay judge was anti-gay.
He was opposed because of WHO appointed him.
His ruling isn't the problem, his being gay and deciding in favor of gay marriage is.
It was a biased ruling.
Actually, he was opposed because he represented the US Olympics committee in a lawsuit many considered to impede gay rights. But he was also opposed because of his conservativeness. BTW, as a correction, Reagan originally appointed him but the opposition from the democrats ended up pushing this into the Bush senior presidency.
He has since consistently been considered a conservative judge. He has since issued opinions that have not been favorable to gay rights. That is an odd way to express his bias in favor of gays, isn't it? The distinction appears to be that he issues opinions based on his review of the facts and law. Sort of what all judges do. Judges make mistakes and are generally influenced by their political leanings in some fashion...but it isn't like voting. They will still issue opinions they aren't particularly happy about if they think they are required by the facts and law. Of the judges in the Northern District of California, Walker was a lucky draw for the proponents of Proposition 8. There are a great many straight judges that are much more left-leaning than Walker.
A judge who was not gay would have been fine.
OK. I get it now.
Whatever you say is right and anything else wrong.
Think mighty highly of yourself don't you?
I think you stand pretty much alone in that opinion.
I've seen bigoted opinions here in the past, but I think yours is likely the most bigoted I've seen in quite some time.
Your arguments are weak to the point of non-existence, yet you persist in declaring yourself right.
Isn't it hard to pound on your chest and type at the same time?
Straight Judges would have ruled the same way. Have you heard anyone with any legal training, of any kind, say they would have upheld Proposition 8?
I'm not sure it is quite so cut and dry as to say that no one with legal training would have upheld Proposition 8. Reasonable minds may differ.
They wouldn't differ on an unconstitutional law and still be considered a reasonable jurist. What do you think their argument would be?
It is not that cut and dry. The proponents of Proposition 8 did a particularly poor job of introducing an evidentiary record before Walker. They almost didn't bother, and relied on a series of rather facile common sense arguments. In so doing, they led Walker to make factual findings that will make his decision hard to overturn. Off the cuff, I'm not going to sit down and try to find the best arguments for the other side but I could if given time. With respect to the equal protection argument, one tactic would be to argue that there was a rational basis for the state to treat homosexual couples willing to marry differently from heterosexual couples and then introduce more compelling evidence of why this interest is legitimate. I have not seen anything to suggest that there is a legitimate interest but I could see reasonable people disagreeing with me. While there are arguments to be had, one argument that is entirely without merit is the suggestion that federalism somehow gives California the final say on marriage. Anyone that says this does not understand federalism or our Constitution.
Yes I have, a former district judge who is now a US Congressman.
Had a straight judge ruled as the gay judge did it would have appeared more unbiased.
Just as wrong but not as biased.
And if Vaughn Walker had ruled in favor of Proposition 8, he would have been unbiased? I suppose then you could say that it this was the most unbiased opinion possible because...after all, he was gay. And I suppose opponents of Proposition 8 could have said...but wait, here's a conservative judge...of course he's biased. Here's a better idea...why not focus with particularity on the actual legal opinion that was issued? What is wrong with it, other than that you disagree with the outcome? If it was wrong, it will be decided on appeal. Here is a link to a video where Ted Olson appeared on Fox News. I put it on another thread, but I think you would benefit from watching it. Olson is a leading conservative lawyer that chose to represent the plaintiffs in this case. He represented Bush before the Supreme Court in Gore v. Bush and was Solicitor General under Bush.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_upshot/20 … N0bHltdW0-
WHO IS HE?
WHAT WAS HIS JUSTIFICATION FOR UPHOLDING PROPOSITION 8?
CAN YOU DO THE CUT AND PASTE THING?
Gays are obviously more biased than straights.
From the Wall Street Journal:
John Eastman, the former dean of the law school at Chapman University, chimed in in this San Francisco Chronicle editorial. Wrote Eastman:
Judge Walker’s failure to disqualify himself or at least to disclose his potentially disqualifying relationship to the parties requires that the opinion in the case be vacated and a new trial conducted before a different judge.
So, there is at least one qualified legal opinion of potential personal bias... not on gays in general but on this one judge in particular.
I guess Ralph wouldn't mind evangelical Judges ruling on abortion.
They can rule on abortion. And they do. Judges do not recuse themselves due to their political or religious beliefs on certain issues, much less their sexual identity. And they are bound to follow legal precedent despite their personal beliefs. Failure to recuse themselves is not reversible error. Regardless of a judge's religious beliefs, when they issue an opinion we deal with the reasoning of the opinion...you are unable to articulate any problem with Walker's reasoning so you rely on ad hominem attacks.
BTW, Eastman, is running for attorney general on an arch-conservative platform. He panders to his base. If he had an opinion on the merits of Walker's opinion from a constitutional standpoint, it would be worth hearing because he's probably a smart guy. His bias argument is so weak and unsupported that you would need to be totally ignorant of the legal system to believe it. Here's a tip, when the Proponents of Prop. 8 file their 9th circuit appeal, take a close look at whether there is a bias argument in it. If you think Eastman has articulated a good argument for why Walker's opinion should be vacated, presumably the lawyers representing the proposition 8 interests will make the argument before the 9th circuit (and the Supreme Court if it accepts cert). But Eastman's statement is so preposterous that the proponents of proposition 8 will not have anything to do with it. On the plus side, Eastman got a lot of press for his statements because they were so off-kilter. Should help him get the attention he wants.
How do you feel about devout Roman Catholicor rabid Evangelical judges ruling on abortion or stem cell research cases? By your theory it seems to me they should recuse themselves. Very few people are completely impartial except for late stage Alzheimer's patients.
Why do they have to be "devout" or "rabid" to be effective counterexamples? It's not as if Vaughn Walker is a gay-rights activist. Just any sort of Christian really shouldn't judge on abortion or stem-cell research cases.
Anyone with any religious beliefs whatsoever should recuse themselves from any suit involving scientific or religious matters. Anyone with a sexuality (any: hetero, homo, or bi) should recuse themselves from any suit that involves sexual orientation (like the Prop 8 trial). Anyone with a race (any: white, black, Asian, etc.) should not judge cases about racial prejudice.
I don't think Jim will see it this way, but if you wanted to extend his line of argument...
Thry may or may not be equal in minds, but thry are not equal in the law, and that is exactly what was addressed here.
Of course it affects you. If fellow humans are suffering, you are affected, whether you understand it or not.
Nobody is suffering, hysterics do not help your case.
It is not hysterics to note that allowing human suffering (and it is real suffering) diminishes us as a nation.
People who are unable to marry are suffering?
Go to Iraq, people are suffering.
Go to Afghanistan people are suffering.
Two dudes who want to marry but can't aren't suffering.
Are you married,Jim? Woukd you like it if you could be prevented from visiting your dying wife?
You do know that documents can be filed giving the same sex partner every right that a heterosexual mate has.
All of the hysterics your side engages in is laughable.
Same sex couples can plan for any circumstance and file the required documents needed to prevent the chance of what you are suggesting from happening.
By the way, the same things you are talking about could happen to an unmarried heterosexual couple, where is your concern for their suffering?
Yes, at a substantial cost differential. Those rights cost hetero marrieds nothing. Gays? A great deal and they still can't claim Social Security Benefits. It's unequal.
Hysterical coming from a proponent of the hysterical crowd.
And every single one comes with a dollar amount cost.
We do recognize that as well. In fact it's a valid comparison. It's far cheaper to simply get married..if you are allowed to that is.
A right you want to deny. This is the definition of bigotry by the way. As I said if the shoe fits...
Once again a liberal with a problem that he can't seem to fix.
Anyone with a brain can fill out paperwork and have it notarized.
A filing fee is the only cost and it is minimal.
You will do these things if you want the same rights as a married couple.
Do you think it costs nothing to get or be married?
"You do know that documents can be filed giving the same sex partner every right that a heterosexual mate has."
I think I'm caught up now. And you're dead wrong! And another thing...Straight couple have the choice to protect their family by getting Married!
If your wife died a long and terrible death, and you were the only person there holding her hand... Suddenly! her Mother, or Brother, or Cousin walks in the room and has you removed from the premises. You scream and you shout, and, the police forcefully throw you out of the front door of the Hospital. You want to fight and scream in pain, but you can't, you have to get home to your five year old girl. When you pull up to your house; the police and social services are pushing your screaming little girl into the back of a car.
Are you getting any of this? Do you need more examples of what a gay couple has to SUFFER through due to not having equal justice under the law?
Our system was designed BY CONSERVATIVE LANDOWNERS precisely to protect themselves from the majority rabble.
Before anything else, I don't believe that anyone has accused you of being a homophobe. I appreciate that your problem with the ruling is in your interpretation of the bounds of a federal judge's authority and/or with the notion that marriage is a right (or right to a large set of rights, actually) protected by our Constitution.
But I have to disagree with you. Walker did not amend the Constitution. He ruled, as a federal judge, that the State of California is not allowed to pass laws or even amend its constitution in a way that violates the US Constitution.
To put a twist on an earlier example you provided, a state may not amend its Constitution to disenfranchise a minority, even if through popular vote, as it goes against the Equal Protection Clause. As KerryG has made clear, "protection" is not to be taken literally; it means protection from the creation of laws that abrogate rights from certain people only.
There are over 1,100 rights and responsibilities afforded to married people that gays and lesbians do not have access to. The Supreme Court has ruled many times that marriage is a fundamental right enshrined in the Constitution. That is is why it is illegal for a state to amend its own constitution to prohibit interracial marriage.
You know, it's getting harder and harder for me to just say "the Judge was a freedom fighter who decided to use his influence to bring down tyranny"...
It's like... he used tyranny to fight tyranny...
see, here's the aspect of the argument that I don't like:
"The supreme court has ruled XXX"
I tend to not care what the supreme court rules, because they grossly misuse their powers on a regular basis.
That is exactly what judges do in our system. It's part of the checks and balances we have. We have a Constitution that prevents the majority from disenfranchising minorities, and judges, who are not elected, to verify the validity of laws with respect to their Constitutionality.
I could make a better constitutional case for allowing polygamy ...
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"
Freedom of religion is an explicit fundamental right in the very first amendment ...
Islam has a long established religious tradition of polygamy ...
And yet, laws against polygamy, even on religious grounds have been continually upheld...
But at the state level ....
Why are state laws against polygamy not a violation of the first amendment?
Jim, do you know that the phrase "tyranny of the majority" was used by the drafters of the Constitution? We have a bill of rights because of deep concern about how the majority could oppress certain rights the framers considered inalienable. Indeed, the purpose of the judicial branch is to act as a check to the legislative branch and mob rule.
Bdazzler, sometimes the question reveals something about the asker. If I asked why slavery is unlawful because, after all, we keep monkies in cages at the zoo, that is just a question as well. I might just be curious but you might conclude that my curiosity is rooted in racism. Btw, I agree with you that laws against polygamy may not withstand equal protection challenge. The analogy is not perfect, but it is good.
Were one of those inalienable rights marriage?
If they were then this is a cut and dry case, homosexuals should be able to marry, polygamists should be able to marry more than one woman and so on.
It is established by noninterference by the federal government that the individual states decide who can marry.
In easy to understand words, the feds were never granted jurisdiction over marriage, states were.
"Why are state laws against polygamy not a violation of the first amendment?"
Well, in a case of polygamy between competent, informed, consenting adults, they are a violation of the first amendment.
The problem with polygamy is that it often takes place under fraudulent circumstances (that is, a man who travels a lot marries two women in two different states without telling them about each other). Each woman believes herself to be the man's only spouse. That's fraud, and a violation of each spouse's rights. And when this guy kicks off, there'll be a really complicated legal situation because two wives will pop up and expect to inherit his estate in its entirety (as spouses automatically do under the law).
Another problem with polygamy is that it often involves child brides, young girls who can't legally enter into any other kind of contract, drink alcohol, vote, or even drive a car in some cases. It's a violation of these kids' rights to coerce them into a marriage (polygamous or otherwise!) before they're capable of giving their informed competent adult consent.
But when discussing informed, competent, consenting adults, I don't see why we oughtn't let a marriage contract be drawn up between two men and three women.
I believe polygamy and polyandry should be legal, but my beliefs don't really matter. You are correct that historically polygamist marriages have been characterized by an imbalance of power, lack of clarity of consent, other abusive issues. There may also have been elements of religious prejudice against groups likely to have those marriages.
The state could likely articulate interests in preventing the above-referenced things as a reason why to prevent group marriages. I don't think they necessarily hold up too well. I'm sure there could and would be group marriages that are not coercive at all and for which everyone consents. But there are other interests as well...our system of legal rights and responsibilities between spouses, inheritance, divorce, child custody rights, etc., are designed entirely around two people. Allowing group marriages may create havoc around those systems. If i were a state trying to defend polygamy laws, that is where I would focus. Proposition 8 supporters did not have that avenue because gay marriage involves a marriage between two people...the rights and responsibilities of the couple are exactly the same.
I believe that as time goes by society becomes permissive and it is a rough road to get there! I am just proud to be living in the US of A where we can talk, criticize and voice our opinion about these topics.
There's always this. Jon Marcotte felt that Proposition 8 did not go far enough to protect marriage. So he's proposing an even tougher initiative.
The attorney general official title and statement is: "ELIMINATES THE LAW ALLOWING MARRIED COUPLES TO DIVORCE. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT. Changes the California Constitution to eliminate the ability of married couples to get divorced in California. Preserves the ability of married couples to seek an annulment. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Savings to the state of up to hundreds of millions of dollars annually for support of the court system due to the elimination of divorce proceedings."
694,000 signatures are required for this proposition to make it to the ballot for the 2012 elections. I read somewhere they have over half that number of signatures already.
This could end up on the ballot.
See the slippery slope yet?
Jim, you keep repeating the mantra that it is "plain" (your word not mine), that the federal constitution has no power over a state's control over marriage. You are completely wrong and do not understand federalism. If you have read this somewhere, you were misled. Take a look at the 1967 case of Loving v. Virginia. This is not a novel issue. The Supreme Court struck down state miscegnation laws across the country on both Equal Protection and Due Process grounds. The rational basis asserted by supporters of state miscegnation laws were disconcertingly familiar. They argued that interracial marriages were unnatural, against the will of God, eroded the institution of marriage, etc. Guess what? The majority will in a number of states across the country was that interracial couples should not be legally allowed to marry...but states do not have an unfettered right to make laws about marriage. You keep repeating as a mantra something that shows a deep misunderstanding of federalism and has been conclusively resolved as law of our land for over 40 years. Thank you for wearing me down. Go back to telling us that states have absolute control of marriage. I've done all I can do here.
Just to be clear if there ever is a preservation of marriage act, banning divorce in California, I'll vote for it.
I'll encourage everyone to vote for it.
I guess the best way for others to see the slippery slope is to give them a little push down that slope.
By John Marcotte estimates the act will prevent 99.9% of all divorces in the state of California.
Yeah, they will go across the State line to Nevada to get a divorce.
Many Californians do that already, you know, "quickie" divorce. But maybe we could include a clause that only divorce granted in the state of California is recognized in the state.
It wasn't that long ago that divorce was widely banned in all states...much like inter-racial marriage and suffrage.
I think if we really want to make giant leaps backward they should be universal and apply to everyone.
LOL, it does amuse me how many Christians go on and on about homosexuality being an abomination, etc., while conveniently ignoring that Jesus never said anything about homosexuality... but did have some extremely harsh words for divorce! Way to cherry pick, folks.
Banning the consumption of shell-fish should be next.
I was not making this case on biblical grounds. I never once brought up the bible or God. I asked questions. ... I was:
1. Saying Federal vs. States: Which you made a solid case for
Feds. I still think "States Rights" are more suited for topics of this nature.
2. Was asking on what grounds the choice was to be made: You made a solid case for that. You addressed the State's rights to determine age of majority...
I don't agree with your opinions, but I find them to be well informed and worth considering ... unlike most others in this discussion ....
I have not once brought up the Bible. Two of my close friends that I love dearly are gay Christian clergy. I strongly disagree with them on this point. But, we don't have to agree to love one another.
I have asked questions, and of the proponents of this amendment, only you and one or two others have recognized the questions for what they were and answered intelligently.
I would prefer that this issue be kept 100% private and keep all government involvement out of it. But no longer am I being asked to allow privacy. That was "don't ask don't tell" ... suddenly, that's not good enough any more. I must not only allow privacy ... this issue is being shoved in my face and there are those (not you) who demand that I approve and if I do not, then I am a valid target for name calling and ridicule.
There was a time when I believed reasonable people could have a reasonable disagreement. On this topic, I see only you and one or two others who disagree willing to engage in intelligent conversation on this issue.
All other have made it "us" vs. "them" ... which is not helpful.
No, no, I was speaking generally, not referring to anyone specifically in this post! Sorry if you took offense.
I've been pretty amazed at the high level of discussion in this thread myself - usually gay rights posts descend much quicker into pointless arguments about religious doctrine. It's refreshing to have a debate about the legal aspects instead!
Allowing the government to encroach on the biblical institution of Marriage is unscrupulous. They had a legal, civil union which gave them every right that a married couple has without being required to apply the erroneous title of marriage, which it is not.
Nope. Civil unions are separate and very much unequal. There are hundreds of federal rights that civil unions are not afforded, and any rights conferred on civil union couples vanish when they move into a state that doesn't recognize them.
Regardless, it's stunning to read arguments in favor of "separate but equal" (even when it's not equal by a long shot). It's 2010. Do you really want to return to the world of Plessy vs Ferguson?
If you and/or your religion do not recognize the validity of a civil same-sex marriage, that's fine with me. I couldn't possibly care less.
You are wrong, California already had a domestic partnership law in place which granted same-sex couples the civil rights associated with marriage. I invite you to read that law. it very much proides the same legal rights for same sex couples as does the laws for married couples.
http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displ … =297-297.5
Did you read my first paragraph? Can you dispute either of those two facts?
I'm not sure what paragraphs you are talking about. Did you read the link which I provided? You probably might not notice the fact that the passage of Proposition 8 did not remove already existing rights for same-sex couples, except for the use of the word "marriage" to describe such unions. The same rights, privileges and protections that were in place before the election remained in place after the election.
I'll restate it for you:
There are hundreds of federal rights that civil unions are not afforded, and any rights conferred on civil union couples vanish when they move into a state that doesn't recognize them.
And, even if civil unions were equal to marriage in terms of rights (they're not), are you comfortable with "separate, but equal" being enshrined into our law?
I agree that the concept of civil union, which as far as I can tell is a newer concept on the whole, should be litigated on perhaps a federal level so it can be honored by all of the States equally.
Also the "Seperate but equal" concept you use as a shocking example of primitive American thought is a common liberal tactic used to militate against the character of those to whom you disagree. One can make the same argument as to integrating unisex bathrooms in public parks and in the workplace.
The problem with your argument is that judges haven't been saying for decades, over and over again, that access to unisex bathrooms is an inviolable right. They have said that about marriage.
Judges are supposed to interperet the laws not create new ones.
Yes, that's what they do, and that's what Vaughn Walker did. They also heavily rely on precedents, which, again, he did.
Yeah, he didn't like the law so he axed it. So much for upholding the law.
The law wasn't Constitutional, so he axed it.
Do you believe federal judges are meant to only uphold laws? That would make them useless, wouldn't it?
California citizens validly exercised their right to amend their own constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman, a law which I find to be highly constitutional.
Funny, you can't amend the U.S. Constitution without a super-majority, but you seem to think that the California constitution can be amended with a slim majority. And slim it was indeed.
I'm quite certain the California legislature will address this shortly.
I think what you mean to say is
He thought the law wasn't constitutional.
Thank god he isn't the last person who will hear this case.
I would hate to see more rulings on cases by biased and incompetent judges.
Yes, biased in favor of Constiutional rights rather than conservative ideology.
Is that why same sex marriage is oonly recognized in five other states?
Yes, it was tyranny that the founding fathers feared, and the reason they made the Constitution the ultimate law of the land.
Prior to 1887, only 7 states allowed interracial marriage. Defensible?
Give it time.
As usual, conservatives are on the wrong side of history. You always are and you always will be. You are a retardant force that progress and justice must constantly struggle against, but inch by inch, we do win.
That is the reality of history. Sometimes you pull us down into ignorance, but we always rise back up. And we always will.
I would hardly say that preservation of traditional marriage is a "retardent force."
And someone just like you said the same thing about interracial marriages.
The words change, but the tune is always the same.
Wrong again, I'm completely in favor of interracial marriage.
He meant social conservatives like you from another age. A generation ago, social conservatives were fighting interracial marriage; today, when that's no longer socially acceptable, even for them, they are fighting same-sex marriage.
Generations before then, social conservatives were fighting women's suffrage. Before that, they were fighting the end of slavery.
Social conservatives are always fighting the march of progress.
I know what he meant and my point is that there are people who seem to be just like me on the surface but there are many differences just as I'm sure there are many differences between him and rainbow man.
Though the similarities are striking.
We're not talking about physical appearances. We're talking about your socially-conservative positions.
And I'm pointing out the recklessness of lumping two groups togeather that have nothing to do with eachother.
Nonsense. Social conservatives fight changes to the status quo, no matter how unjust it is. This is the definition of a social conservative.
I'm sure that you'll see that the same groups (usually religious ones) that are socially conservative today were socially conservative a generation or two ago. Different battles, but same underlying ethos: resistance to change the status quo.
when the status quoe changes to violate the rights of American citizens yes I am very much opposed to it.
Are you sure you're not opposed to changes to the status quo because your church instructs you to be opposed to it?
When you change the status quo to violate peoples rights as Judge Walker did, I am opposed to it.
How do you feel about KIDNAPPING the children of Gay couples? Should we let a Judge decide an issue like that? Or, should we leave it up to STATES' RIGHTS?
These are my favorite kind of comments.
Its supposed to make the person its directed at appear to not be able to think for themselves, in other words, stupid.
The chances of any church telling him how to think are very slim compared to the gay activists alliance telling you what to think.
I know you're not religious, but "gay activists alliance" people do not threaten that you will burn for an eternity in the afterlife if you don't believe what you're told to believe.
Some highly religious people are very proud of the fact that they don't think for themselves, and instead read and execute the commandments spelled out in their holy books very literally...well, at least those that don't inconvenience themselves too much.
And again, that is just what conservatives said about every other issue we fought for: it offended their religion, it disturbed the natural order, violated their rights, on and on and on.
Conservatives are ALWAYS on the wrong side of social issues and always for the same reasons.
And what is most frustrating is that rhey never understand that. They can read history, but they cannot see that the people who opposed ending slavery, opposed giving women the right to vote, opposed allowing interracial marriage and so on are just like them. Same thought patterns, same arguments, always.
It is really tiresome.
Biased from whose perspective? Incompetent by whose standard?
Wanna whip out that law degree you earned?
What Federal Rights? The Marriage Pennalty???
You are completely and totally wrong about the content of Proposition 8 and what it did to the California constitution.
This is what makes discussions like this so difficult. Way too many of you try to pass rumor or speculation as fact.
Proposition 8 consisted of only two short sections. Its full text was:
Section I. Title
This measure shall be known and may be cited as the "California Marriage Protection Act."
Section 2. Article I. Section 7.5 is added to the California Constitution. to read:
Sec. 7.5. Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.
You might actually try citing with facts from time to time.
A previous poster posted the definition of marriage which inclued the phrase "of the opposite sex". So maybe the problem is some people cannot understand the English language.
I also noticed someone point a finger at Christians--implying he is not one(?)--and yet this person claims to have such a knowledge of The Bible that he knows what jesus said and did NOT say.
I am an ordained minister but no expert on Jesus. A lot is said about homosexuality in the Bible though if you read it from cover to cover.
Sometimes you folks get way off the subject!
OK. I have wasted enough time. I have to rewrite an article on Blue Cheer.
I thought this was interesting.
The Majority Opinion of the New York Court of Appeals in Hernandez v. Robles (2006) rejected any reliance upon the Loving case as controlling upon the issue of same-sex marriage
the Supreme Court reiterated that marriage is a right "fundamental to our very existence and survival" (id., citing Skinner, 316 US at 541)—a clear reference to the link between marriage and procreation. It reasoned: "To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes . . . is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law" (id.). Although the Court characterized the right to marry as a "choice," it did not articulate the broad "right to marry the spouse of one's choice"
Whether the NY Court of Appeals believes that Loving is "controlling" (and the U.S. Supreme Court is the final arbiter in deciding how all courts in the land must construe its precedent), does not change that Loving eviscerates the mantra that you repeat in every other post. You say that state legislatures have an unfettered right to do whatever they want with marriage. This mantra reflects a deep misunderstanding of federalism and constitutional law. I urge you to read Loving. Many states around the nation passed laws prohibiting interracial couples from marrying. In Loving, the U.S. Supreme Court held that these laws violated the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses. WTF? You mean states can't do whatever they want with marriage? Since you care about this issue enough to, it appears, start looking at precedent, you need to start with the controlling precedent in the land. Your mantra does not turn on whether Loving "controls" on the issue of same-sex marriage (it does not need to). It turns on whether the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses are implicated when the states pass laws about marriage. It is undisputed that they are.
"You say that state legislatures have an unfettered right to do whatever they want with marriage. This mantra reflects a deep misunderstanding of federalism and constitutional law."
I know you keep telling me that and I still don't care.
In the end the Supreme Court will rule against same sex marriages.
Right or wrong that is what is going to happen.
Nope, sorry, you are wrong!
Heck, I don't know how they'll rule, but it cracks me up every time someone here declares an absolute.
Eh, it's a tough call. I'm pretty sure the conservatives will figure out some way to oppose it, but the swing vote is Kennedy and he's been consistently supportive of gay rights. At least as much as he's ever consistent about anything.
Apparently the American Family Association is calling on it's 2.3 million supporters to write to congress insisting on the impeachment of Judge Vaughn Walker.
The beat goes on (and on and on).
I don't care if gays get married - none of my business. But why did they even bother to vote on the prop in the first place??
In California it is possible, to put on the ballot, any initiative if you can get a certain number of signatures to support it.
At this point in time it's about 630,000. The signatures need to be gathered in the state, by residents of the state, from state citizens registered to vote.
A sampling of the signers is processed through the voter registration database. If most of the signatures are validated this way and enough are gathered state law is the initiative goes on the next ballot.
You are most welcome. I hope you are doing well by the way.
Kerryg, no one know how the appellate courts will rule on Walker's decision. For what it is worth, I believe it will be upheld for two reasons: 1) Walker's interpretation of constitutional and precedent was sound and I believe that many appellate judges would agree. But there is room for disagreement on that point. ) 2. More significantly, however, Walker's opinion contains exhaustive factual findings based on evidence offered at trial. Appellate courts will give his factual findings great deference. The California case is almost the perfect case for striking down prohibitions on same-sex marriage across the country for the second reason.
Soldiers are required to defend the Constitution above all else. Does not the defense of that document also require a soldier to point out the greatest abuses of government?
I don't have the foggiest what you are talking about. If you believe that soldiers must be constitutional scholars, I think you are mistaken. But I do not mean to put words in your mouth and I am only speculating.
well the politicians in Washington should be. And clearly they are not, the only person I have ever seen with a 100% constitutional voting record in the last 40 years is Ron Paul (R)- Texas
it seems that everyone agrees about the rights of the couple (irregardless of orientation) to get married, what is not clear is about the processes involved, there will always be conflict and this is how system develops. When society progresses, it becomes more permissive.
I don't think majority rules is how things are decided.
Democrats sure thought Al Gore should have won the 2000 election because he won the popular vote.
Conservatives knew better.
I know how we can realistically get Gay marriage passed in America on a federal level and get both sides to agree to it.
Gay's can marry lesbians. Just my $0.02.
Yeah, and back in the days before Loving v Virgina, white people could marry other white people and black people could marry other black people, so obviously laws preventing white people from marrying black people were totally okay and not discriminatory at all.
All I have to say is thank God for intelligent people in the justice system standing up for the constitution.There is not a valid reason to take individual civil liberties away from a specific demographic. If a homosexual couple wants to get married so be it. If gay marriage does not directly affect your personal civil rights, which it doesn't, then it should be made legal. The current "conservatives" within congress are more worried about being re-elected and pleasing their evangelical base, then standing up for a basic constitutional principle.
I noticed this is your first post. Nice one! Welcome to the forums.
I think I like you! Aw shucks, I KNOW I do. Great first post, as PrettyPanther said.
Nothing is solved...sadly. The american struggle for rights and freedoms will go on for many years to come...in-fact, as long as we have a planet and america, conflicts and struggles will always exist.
I heard thats the american way...did you? (wink)
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