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The U.S. Supreme Court and Same Sex Marriage

Updated on August 30, 2015
cam8510 profile image

Chris spent 50 years in the Evangelical world as a layman, as a student at a prominent Christian University and as a missionary and pastor.

The United States Supreme Court Justices

Left to right-Justice Sotomayor, Justice Breyer, Justice Alito, Justice Kagan, Justice Thomas, Justice Scalia, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Justice Kennedy, Justice Ginsburg
Left to right-Justice Sotomayor, Justice Breyer, Justice Alito, Justice Kagan, Justice Thomas, Justice Scalia, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Justice Kennedy, Justice Ginsburg | Source

Christianity Today Magazine

Source

The Response of the Evangelical Community to the Ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court Regarding Same Sex Marriage

The response of Evangelical Christians to the recent Supreme Court decision regarding same sex marriage ranges from disappointment, to anger, to making confused and inaccurate comments regarding that decision.

Christianity Today magazine (June 26, 2015) says that the Christian response should be sixfold. The Church, says CT, should Rejoice, Repent, Rethink, Re-engage, Reach out, Rejoice (again). This article might well be the most reasonable and balanced Evangelical response to the Courts decision to reverse the ruling of the Sixth Circuit.

Other responses, such as that of 2016 presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee, virtually call for civil disobedience by churches and Christian schools in regard to hiring gay employees. Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, suggests that President Obama install extra lightning rods on the White House because he (the President) celebrated the Courts decision by displaying lights in the form of a rainbow, the common logo of the LGBT community.

Some declare that the Supreme Court has legalized same sex marriage in all fifty states. This of course is impossible since the Court does not make laws. It evaluates the constitutionality of legislation passed by the States and the U.S. Congress.

Franklin Graham

Source

How Evangelical Christians View the U.S. Government

The Evangelical Christian community, in general, looks at the United States government as God’s (and their) instrument for determining, proclaiming and enforcing biblical morality in America. They seem to be saying that Congress is to determine what is moral, the Supreme Court is to proclaim what is moral and lower courts are to enforce what is moral, based on the teachings of the Bible.

The words and actions of the Evangelical Christian community over the last 40 years show that they not only see the role of government to be as described above, but they see their own role as being the watchdog over government. They believe it is their role to keep government on the right course, not veering to the right or to the left, but being faithful to their tasks of determining, proclaiming and enforcing biblical values in America.

The following question must be asked of the Evangelical Christian community, and an answer insisted upon. They should be asking this question themselves, but they have lost their way and can’t see that they are the ones who have veered off course. The question is this: Where in the Bible does it say that government is God’s instrument for determining, proclaiming and enforcing biblical, personal morality on its citizens?

White House Lit in Rainbow Lights to Celebrate Court's Ruling

Source

Where in the Bible does it say that government is God’s instrument for determining, proclaiming and enforcing biblical, personal morality on its citizens?

The Role of Government in Relation to Biblical Morality

Do you believe it is the role of the United States Government to determine, proclaim and enforce a code of biblical morality on all its citizens?

See results

What the New Testament Says About the Role of Government

Some Christians who may be reading this are already turning their Bibles to the New Testament book of Romans, chapter thirteen, which says that

rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor.

These words seem to say that government is God’s instrument for implementing a system of personal, biblical morality by which a nation should be governed. This is not what these words mean. The passage interprets itself on this point when the writer calls up a particular example of the “good” which government is to enforce. The example is taxation. The government is (statement of fact) God’s instrument for establishing certain codes of behavior (laws) that will enable all citizens of a nation to conduct their lives and businesses in a safe and secure environment.

If government had as its God given mission, to determine, proclaim and enforce biblical, personal morality, then we would see the New Testament calling on the government in Rome to get busy doing its job. But we don’t see this anyplace in the New Testament. And one must ask, why not?

Mike Huckabee Courts the Evangelical Vote

Source

It is not the job of government to make individuals moral in the biblical sense.

Government and Biblical Morality

The answer is really very simple. It is not the job of government to make individuals moral in the biblical sense. Were there gay people living in the Roman world at the time? Of course there were. And why didn’t the Apostle Paul or other Christian leaders of the time challenge the Roman government to pass laws against homosexuality? Because early Christian leaders knew it was not the Roman governments job to make its citizens moral in the biblical sense.

I believe that a thorough study of the New Testament will reveal that the tasks of determining, proclaiming and enforcing biblical, personal morality are God’s responsibility, which He has largely delegated to the Church. But he He has not delegated them to secular governments.

Why, oh Evangelical Christians, are you shirking your God given responsibility to determine, proclaim and enforce personal, biblical morality in the world? Why are you insisting that it is the job of government to do so? You, not the government, are the salt of the earth.

It is the job of the Church, not the government, to tell those citizens that they are sinners and need to abide by a moral code contained in the Bible.

In What Real Way Will This Affect Your Life?

Source

poll: The Government and its Citizens.

Does the U.S. government have the responsibility to legislate with the wellbeing of the greatest number of citizens in mind or for Christians only?

See results

The Roles of Church and Government in Relation to Morality

It is the job of government to make and enforce laws that will provide for the safety and security of all its citizens. It is the job of the Church, not the government, to tell those citizens that they are sinners and need to abide by a moral code contained in the Bible.

In light of this, we must take a look at the Republican Party as it exists today. Fully one third of voters today are Evangelical Christians and the majority of them are Republicans. These are the people who want the United States government to determine, proclaim and enforce biblical, personal morality on the rest of us. As I have pointed out, this is a perversion of what even the Bible says should be the case.

The recent ruling of the Supreme Court, declaring that it would be unconstitutional for any state to institute a law prohibiting same sex marriage, is a perfect opportunity for us to see clearly how these things ought to be handled.

The United States government has a responsibility to provide for the fair treatment of all its citizens, LGBTs included. In that sense, it was right for the Court to rule as it did. Gays and Lesbians need a legal way to proceed with their relationships.

The Evangelical Christian Community has the freedom and the right to proclaim homosexuality to be a sin and an abomination to God, but it is the responsibility of the Church, not the State, to make that case.

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    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 23 months ago from Ohio, USA

      " But the response of evangelicals is instructive. "

      Instructive, just like the response of every other special interest group.

      "They are livid, and it shows us the motivation they have for pursuing a government, controlled by a minority which legislates from the Bible. "

      Again, every special interest group yearns to legislate from their moral framework.

      " It is the potential that I fear."

      What other special interest groups do you fear? Seniors want to bankrupt the government for the sake of their entitlements.

      "Do we actually want a minority, namely Evangelical Christians, running the government and passing laws that are derived from the Bible when the majority of the country doesn't want that?"

      Every special interest group is a minority. That's the point of politics: it's competing special interest groups. If everyone wanted the same thing we'd have no need for politics.

      Honestly, very few voters want to pass a law derived from the Bible. It's a vocal minority and you know it. We had a reasonable system that protected everyone equally. One man could marry one woman. Every citizen was subject to the same law. There was no illegal discrimination.

      "As for everyone who supports PP and abortion being atheists, I think that is an generalization that would not stand up to scrutiny."

      I agree. I exaggerated to make a point. On the other hand, not everyone opposing same-sex marriage is an Evangelical: you simply found a group you can pick on whilst remaining politically correct.

      Most people favoring same-sex marriage are uninformed as to the concept of equal protection under the law: they are also a special interest group.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp, the emphasis of my hub is on the response of Evangelicals to the SC decision. Whether or not the SC should have even been debating the issue is a valid point. But the response of evangelicals is instructive. They are livid, and it shows us the motivation they have for pursuing a government, controlled by a minority which legislates from the Bible. That is not a democracy.

      You are right, they have not yet achieved that goal, but are we to stand by and let our nation move in that direction? It is the potential that I fear.

      Do we actually want a minority, namely Evangelical Christians, running the government and passing laws that are derived from the Bible when the majority of the country doesn't want that? One might ask how a minority can rise to power in a democracy. It is due to the laziness and lethargy of the electorate.

      As for everyone who supports PP and abortion being atheists, I think that is an generalization that would not stand up to scrutiny.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 23 months ago from Ohio, USA

      " But the decision should not be made by Evangelicals... "

      The decision was not made by Evangelicals and no decision ever has. We are a nation of laws.

      By your logic, the decisions to permit abortion and fund Planned Parenthood were made by atheists. Why do 'they' have so much power?

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Audrey, thank you for reading this hub and for your comment. My emphasis in this article was to call attention to the reaction of the Evangelicals. The ideal place for this decision to be made was not the Supreme Court. It is truly a state issue, I believe. But the decision should not be made by Evangelicals either except that they are individual citizens. But they are much more than that today. They are a political organization and if given power, will legislate from the Bible. That prospect should frighten even Evangelicals themselves because it spells the end of freedom as we have known it.

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 23 months ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi Chris - You picked a deep subject with lots of opinions. I agree that it should be up to the states, as you and someone mentioned. However, that did not happen, but it will still have opinions in the various states. I do not care that the Supreme Court rendered an opinion, and I have nothing against LGBT. I wish politics was not in the issue, in actuality. Thanks for writing this hub. Sharing. Blessings, Audrey

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 23 months ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Exactly. This should have been left up to We, the People to decide, not un-elected lawyers.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 23 months ago from Tasmania

      I wonder where the anti-brigade get all the information that determines their thinking and their attitudes.

      They declare their "God does not like it." ....a non-physical, obscure, mental picture determines one's required action.

      The mind of that god is disclosed in a book written in obscure fashion by obscure people long ago. In order for that god's directives to be understood, all you have to do is sit still, and listen to the ego of a biased person out there on the dias. Some God!!

      Out of all that is declared of that god's word, we are supposed to deduce that when two individuals love each other they must not come too close; they must never share a bed together; they must leave their curtains fully open at night; their txt and phone conversations should be open to scrutiny be God's people to judge....

      Mmmmmmmm.......yeah, let's include all heterosexual people in this. We must make sure they don't offend their God with anything He would not like.

      Hey folks....let's have a lighter outlook on life. We're a long time dead! And I know this comment is a bit off-topic but it tries to get at the heart of those objections.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Will, now you've raised a separate issue. Should the decision have been left up to the states? I agree it should have been, but my article was in light of the fact that the Court was asked to give its opinion. No it should not have reached the Court at all. But my same argument in my hub would apply to states as well.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 23 months ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      They overturned several state measures approved and passed by voters defining marriage as the legal bond of one man and one woman.

      This is far from just my opinion Cam. It is also the opinion of many legal scholars that this was a case of blatant judicial activism. I agree. They should have left it up to the states.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Will, I respect and support your opinion that as Americans, we are self governing. But the SC did not overturn the will of the people. A 2015 Pew research poll reported that 54% of Americans support same sex marriage and 39% oppose it. By your own standard, the SC ruled correctly. Should they have considered the thousand year historical definition or "We the People?" http://www.pewforum.org/2015/07/29/graphics-slides...

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 23 months ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      The first three words in the Constitution and in giant script are: We, the People. That was intentional because the concept was of a self-governing people.

      What six un-elected lawyers did with that ruling was overturn the will of We, the People, by redefining the thousand year old meaning of marriage, which was the union of one man and one woman.

      That is why this was so wrong.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      All this ruling means is that the status of LGBTs has been raised to equal that of race and gender. If a black couple went to the baker, ordered a cake and were turned away because they were black, that would be illegal and should be. Even if the baker's conscience told him that blacks were somehow inferior or immoral, it wouldn't matter. It's illegal to discriminate based on race. The gay community has been elevated to the same level. It's as simple as that. Why would you deny a fellow human being this basic right? You don't have to like them, but you should be interested in all citizens having adequate rights to live happy and productive lives. That is government's job.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 23 months ago from Ohio, USA

      The full story is that our government , the appeals court, compelled a private business to violate their conscience. We were assured numerous times by liberal writers on this site that no such thing would possibly happen. We were assured that people just wanted to get married, that no side-effects would arise

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 23 months ago from Tasmania

      Ok, thanks. I only got half the story. Not wishing to join up or sign in.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 23 months ago from Ohio, USA

      No, it was an Appeals Court in Colorado. I don't think religion swayed them.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 23 months ago from Tasmania

      For "religious conservatives " read "fanatics." Would-be bullies who think they have the moral high-ground and that all other persuasions are destined for hell.

      I wonder how many of them qualify for the title of "hypocrite" at the same time.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 23 months ago from Ohio, USA

      oopsy: we were told this wouldn't happen:

      http://www.wsj.com/articles/court-rules-baker-cant...

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 24 months ago from Ohio, USA

      "Thats the major thing, the government gave each denomination the right to say no if they feel they can't in good conscience. This way you allow for people to practice their faith the way they see fit before God."

      Here in The Colonies our government gave each couple the right to sue if they are refused by a denomination. Well, that's not exactly true because it used to be a States' Rights issue until our SCOTUS decided it was a legislative body.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 24 months ago from Tasmania

      Trying to understand the other person's point of view is the way to progress, I feel. Regardless of each point of view, there needs to be a transcending One-ness, a Love of the entire world and the integrated nature of all that it contains.

      This would allow every different opinion respect and recognition, without having it declared "the Truth."

      Am I being naive in this?

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 24 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      MsDora, I appreciate that comment very much. One does not have to be an atheist to believe that government isn't the spokesperson for God. If God chooses to use a government in some fashion, that is his work, not ours. Thanks for visiting.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 24 months ago from The Caribbean

      Since we do not have a theocratic form of government, they are not obligated to be God's voice to the people. Wise, practical insights here.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      We've had same sex marriage in NZ for a coupke of years now and contrary to what many said society hasn't fallen apart!

      Gay and Lesbian couples can even get married in church provided the church agrees with it.

      Thats the major thing, the government gave each denomination the right to say no if they feel they can't in good conscience. This way you allow for people to practice their faith the way they see fit before God.

      Great hub

      Lawrence

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      Relevant comments, thank you CAM.

      Each of those areas you mention, Stem cell research, Sex out of wedlock and homosexual relations, need to be discussed with level-minded thinking, I feel.

      There can be different points of view based upon traditions, religious beliefs, etc. But there are other issues to be considered..... the effect upon vulnerable people who inadvertently become involved.

      The resulting child; children born to parents out of wedlock and the legal/societal repercussions; the children of gay and lesbian partners.

      None of these people would care a damn about the politics or the dogma. It's the effects upon their lives that need to be addressed.

      Just because a person has a religious objection to anything, should not prevent him/her giving much more concern to the very real human needs than adherence to some obscure law(s) written down for ancient cultures. Likewise, just because a person has no affiliation (like myself) to any religious dogma, should not prevent us considering the feelings of persons who are religious.

      In other words, lets consider any argument on real, factual understandings, instead of ignorance and presupposition.

      It seems to me that a strong religious conviction often obscures the facts and supports the ignorance.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      jonnycomelately, your reference (implied) to Sharia Law is very pertinent here in this discussion. Here are some poll results regarding how Americans feel about certain issues. Using human embryos in stem cell research-58% pro, 33% con. Sex between unmarried man and woman, 59% pro, 38% con. Gay/Lesbian relations, 54 pro, 42 con. These are issues on which Evangelicals have been clear. They would legislate on these and related issues contrary to the poplar opinion based on the what they feel are the teachings of the Bible. One wonders if Evangelicals would be in favor of Bible scholars rather than law scholars on the Supreme Court, or any other court.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @William Dugan

      "The purpose of my religion is to lead people to Christ and have them saved. They cannot be forced to be saved, or it is not real. In order to be saved, you must have your own personal relationship with God, and this can NOT be forced upon someone."

      This statement from yourself embodies, for me, so much of what I see as arrogant presumption on the part of the evangelical christianity.

      You are entitled to believe any of it if you choose to, like everyone else has that freedom.

      However, it is all based upon beliefs, not categorical proofs. I personally hold none of those presumptions, I don't even accept the existence of a judgmental god as you presumably hold to.

      I have been in your position, holding your beliefs for several years of my life. I have discarded it all.

      The effect of a Government being solely aligned with a fundamentalist, evangelical church, would be not far different from a country controlled by a radical Islamist group. I, and millions of people like myself, would be subject to laws that are imposed by the few. Gone would be any semblance of democracy.

      This sounds very radical, I know. It is, and it is meant to be....

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp: "Calling out a particular religious constituency is specious and bigoted." Should I call out the Hindus, the Buddhists, the Muslims? They haven't taken control of a major, American, political party. They haven't taken control of a minor party. To you, the only explanation for my article is that I am a bigot. No. The explanation is that Christianity is by far the largest, most powerful religion in the United States. Why would I choose to write this article about any other group? It would be ridiculous. Your knee jerk reaction, by calling me a bigot, is humorous, but also insulting. Read what I have written and tell me where I am wrong. Did Jesus teach political activism or grass roots change? Tell me. What I have said in the article should be embraced by Christians and trumpeted in every church. But the Church in America is broken and I abandoned that sinking ship. She's going down even as she rises politically and morphs into something altogether different. In the Church of America, marketing has replaced evangelism, political activism has replaced the exemplary life, the cult of personality has replaced the gift of pastoring and forced societal change has replaced the concepts of the 'light of the world' and 'salt of the earth.' Can you say with a straight face that the Church in America is the epitome of the teachings of Jesus? Is it even close? No, I am not a bigot, because bigotry flows from irrational and unfair intolerance. I am neither irrational nor unfair if what I have said is true. And what I have said is true.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      William, I appreciate as well the civil conversation. You may or may not know to what extent I understand what you are saying. I hear you loud and clear and understand every word. I've been in your shoes. And I do agree with you that not all Christians are like the ones I have described in the article. Thanks for coming back and allowing me to clarify my position.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      "This was in reference to whether our government should legislate with the greatest number of Americans in mind or with Christians only in mind."

      A sad Straw Man argument. Plenty of logical Americans of all faiths and non-faiths holding a reasonable grasp of the concept of Equal Protection understood that marriage laws were already applied consistently to all citizens. Calling out a particular religious constituency is specious and bigoted.

    • William Dugat profile image

      William Dugat 2 years ago from Lufkin, Texas

      It make s sense in this case, and I appreciate you explaining the matter. Now that you have explained the context, I agree, it is a good question. I only wish to ask... Do you realize that not all Christians are like this? I am a Christian, and I do not wish to force my beliefs upon anyone. The purpose of my religion is to lead people to Christ and have them saved. They cannot be forced to be saved, or it is not real. In order to be saved, you must have your own personal relationship with God, and this can NOT be forced upon someone. Christians don't want gay rights because this affects the spread of our religion, which by the way the spread of Christianity should be a good thing. It makes it harder for us to keep people out of hell, so really, the nation has (excuse my language but this is not meant as a curse) damned itself. We only wish to spread the gospel, not force it, and those of us who do wish to force it give those of us who don't a bad name. It creates stereotypes. We don't want this. The way we are marked and name-called for our opinions is much like what the LGBT community complains about. They insult us and call us homophobes, after they complain about someone else insulting them. It's almost as if we are children being bullied. This is the angle of persecution I am focusing on. Future persecution of Christians will become much worse but I will not go into that now.

      I appreciate your ability to have a civil discussion. Thank you for your time.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      William, I'd like to speak to another part of your comment as well. You said "Of course they should obviously account for the largest number of citizens possible." This was in reference to whether our government should legislate with the greatest number of Americans in mind or with Christians only in mind. Let me ask the question in a slightly different way. If Evangelical Christians gained control of the legislative branch to the extent that they had the opportunity to pass laws nearly at will, would they legislate in the interest of the majority of Americans or would they pass laws that were consistent with their biblical/Christian beliefs? For example, if the majority of Americans were in favor of birth control for everyone, regardless of age and without parental consent, would that Evangelical Christian controlled congress pass such a law? No, they would not. They would legislate in a way that was consistent with their beliefs on the related subject of sex outside of marriage, namely, abstinence. This is what the second poll question is about.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      William, thank you for reading and for your comments. The second question is a very good question when understood in the context of this article. You see it as a christian who feels that Christians potentially could become a persecuted minority. Is that the perspective of this article? No, it is not. I represented Christians as a politically aggressive minority which wants to institute biblically based laws across the country. If Christians gain enough power to politically dominate, will they be free to legislate solely with their Christian beliefs and Christian supporters in mind? You see Christians as a persecuted minority. I see them as an aggressive political force with the goal of forcing Christian/Bible based legislation on the rest of America. What Christians see as liberty, the rest of America sees as the loss of freedom. In this light, the second question is good and actually, very important.

    • William Dugat profile image

      William Dugat 2 years ago from Lufkin, Texas

      The second poll is not a good question. Of course they should obviously account for the largest number of citizens possible, but that doesn't mean that the minority should be ignored. They should not account for Christians ONLY, but they still should not ignore the Christians and their rights completely because of the fact that they are the minority. That's what many of us are concerned about. Our rights will soon be ignored because we are the minority.

    • profile image

      christinemariezzz 2 years ago

      For:

      johnnycomelately,JCL,

      @ cam8510 Hubpages

      Backwards is okay JCL, sometimes one has to go back where they left off, then move forward.

      No mud over here, your reciprocation actually added a splash of inspiration to my I Phone 6 Notepage. I've been looking for a working title for my notes on this illusion called: Court Decisions (LOL)

      Juxtapositions on Jurisdictions: Don't Let the Gavel Scare You!

      If you do not know I create my own literary devices and my own words, even though I'm Hubwise, cultured, well-educated, and fashionably stylish in the fine arts. I do not vaunt English, try to respect its punctuations, as well as the Hub Comment section of another.

      I am an honorable woman whose lifetime experiences and knowledge could make history-but probably won't. It's probably because I have never left my 5 year old passion for coloring; it fits demographically! IOW: I'm sorely poor at coloring the world politically; it's obvious to me O Bama is not a black sheep, he has two legs.

      I've written a lengthy note page on how I could have responded had we been discussing this over a Last Supper.

      It is for this reason I shall close-Amen.(LOL)

      -christinemariezzz

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @christinemariezzz , I apologize for having "muddied the waters"a bit for you here in this discussion. Hopefully you and others can see where my passion lies primarily.... in trying to get attitudes aired and confronted when they seem to be contradictory.

      I am unable to address the topic directly, not being within jurisdiction of the United States Government, but what goes on there in the United States of America really does affect us others in the world, particularly here in Australia. Sadly, our Federal Government can be somewhat backward, even worse than yours sometimes.

      But thank you for your input.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp, terrified of Evangelicals? Me? No, not terrified, but concerned about freedom, yes. Evangelicals are going to face a massive split down the road and it will be between those who finally figure out how Christians are supposed to impact the world and those who insist that politics is where Christianity will have its greatest impact. How does the New Testament teach people to impact society. I challenge you to find political involvement to be the emphasis. Jesus said that his followers were the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Yes, that can be carried out in a political manner, but Evangelicals appear to have put nearly all of their eggs into the Republican Party basket. They show up in droves on election days and pat themselves on the back for standing up for biblical values. Really? Is that all it takes in order to be what Jesus said they should be? Did Jesus say to go into all the world and take over every government? No, he said to go into all the world and preach the gospel. It seems to me that the word gospel needs some defining. When I read the New Testament, I see Jesus and the Apostles and other Christians impacting their societies at the grass roots. Modern day Evangelicals are creating a twisted, deformed version of Christianity by making politics their main focus.

    • cam8510 profile image
      Author

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      jonnycomelately, I appreciate your words about marriage, contract and commitment. I've looked around online and found marriage/divorce rates regarding Evangelical Christians to be all over the place. Some claim they are the most likely to get divorced. Others say they are the least likely. My gut tells me the following figures may be closest to the truth, though. Evangelicals/actively involved Christians have a divorce rate of 26%. Agnostics/atheists have a 33% divorce rate. So, a 7% difference. Make of it what you will.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @nicomp, ...."I can list many ways that same-sex marriage indirectly affects me." Please list some of them.

      Personally, I will never be married to a woman or a guy.

      It seems silly, to me, that people would want to take on a union and call it "Marriage," which in the United States, Britain, Australia and other "Western-style" countries has become a nonsense.

      It always entails a contract. Yet a contract, a promise, has become something spoken and made, in any cases, without any long-term intention to honour that promise. This seems to be so whether the ceremony has taken place within a religious or civil context.....so it obviously has no bearing upon questions of belief and faith.

      So much in modern society has lost a basic intention to follow through with one's duty, one's responsibility towards the needs of others.

      When those holier-than-thou christian people look at the broad spectrum of marriage and start to clean up their own act, then they can come back and worry about two guys or two girls getting together.

      The problems have nothing to do with what a "God" wants people to do. It all boils down to human beings getting real and facing facts.

      The same principles apply to businesses that peddle trans fats, salt, sugars, corn syrup and sodas, knowing full well that their products are not good for human health. How many directors of those companies claim to be "God fearing?" They are steeped in denial and untruth.

      It DOES affect you and me, nicomp. It requires personal commitment to think of our neighbour's needs in the same way as we perceive our own needs. Regardless of belief in a god.

    • profile image

      christinemariezzz 2 years ago

      Corrections:

      After "box" ( government, human court)

      Closing:

      Truly an "hourplace" in history to be living.

      (My created word for "in the moment)

    • profile image

      christinemariezzz 2 years ago

      Whoa!...this concern, well....

      Chris,

      I was not going to comment on your article; I am dull with history, and Frank says I need to work on my novel; and this is a subject that runs deeper than human court with me. Well, I like the way you think, and decided to be candid, and respond to your hub and its crowd. Oh, and yea, and this gives Frank something to read. LOL

      Here goes:

      The Short of It:

      Your hub followers put themselves in the raw here; and it's a somewhat of a serious theatre.

      Tickets Get Your Tickets!

      The Long of It:

      Box Office Forty.

      (I counted about that many boxes used for the dialogue going on here). Political pandemonium at its best when a Hubber bangs out his well-supported views on a hot topic. Hubbers brought each other to the level of pollution from the flush of a toilet to personal testimonies of never getting married. That's personal stuff man, I thought were supposed to keep that tucked in, nobody's business, hands off!*

      I like the hub,and enjoying all the comments:

      You've shown, along with your commenters, that ordinary people can assess this matter of sexual conduct in a sacred , holy manner (i,e, telling and examining the merits and faults of oneself, and each other.) It's unnatural and un-biological to do otherwise; it is unloving.

      * Conclusively:

      I don't think it's mandatory that a piece of paper (i, e, ticket) be given from a box in order to approve someones participation in something. But, if one wills to have that done: so let it be. I am very happy and at peace to know that my very long term year marriage is no longer under litigations of any kind. Divorce assuaged the grief I held for a long time; even while gaining some of the most beautiful moments of my life.

      A peace has replaced a grief I once held. The marriage zealously advocated evangelicalism. I won't, and really have no need to state anything more. I can say: I have discovered that evangelicals had no interest in coming to the aid of preserving the marriage in any way, succumbing to an anti-christ.. This did not make me sully, or mar who I am. Would they have a "grand old party" and celebrate my victory? LOL

      As an aside, I am passionate about how others will, and are seeking to contract their desires to marry outside of the traditional and or conventional-ways, evangelical etcetera ... in which they were taught. My six living children and their close group of friends, as well as new people I've met in my age group, have been exemplary models of a sincerity and good conscience in other contract possibilities.

      It's truly a hour place in history to be living!

      Thanks for allowing me to give my comment,

      Christine

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      cam8510 and all of y'all who are so terrified of Evangelicals: Evangelicals are not "the church" or even "a church." They are individual people who may assumed to have similar, but not identical, political views. Evangelicals might be considered as a constituency to be pandered to, akin to Hispanics or Women, but nothing more scary than that. All these constituencies are defined by their general agenda.

      I've not read anything about Evangelicals trashing government buildings during an 'occupy' movement, as happened to the Wisconsin State Capital in 2011. The Occupy Wall Street movement (businesses disrupted, allegations of rape and sexual assault, hundreds of people arrested) , also in 2011, was not populated with Evangelicals. I have never felt threatened around Evangelicals, even when they are worked up.

      Some folks might be scared of what would happen if Evangelicals took over government, as JohnnyComeLately mentioned earlier, but rest assured that any other special interest taking over government would be even more scary.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Deb, as you have pointed out, the Church is using its influence on multiple issues, and not all of these issues are related to the mission of the Church. They have and will continue to morph into a political entity. I know this, because it is the pattern of history. Look at European history. It is the history of the Church slowly changing from a spiritual force to a political force and finally to a military force in the form the European states. This is the future of American Evangelicalism. Thanks for your thoughts.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp, You say the Church just wants to have an opinion. I must disagree with that point. I've made the point in this hub. Evangelicals have taken control of the Republican Party. I have to say, who can blame them for doing so since it was clearly possible. But this does not amount to an opinion. Evangelicals are in the drivers seat in many elections, both local, statewide and nationally. This is not opinion, this is setting the agenda. They have the power and are using it. Again, since it is theirs for the taking, who can blame them for using the power. But it is not opinion. They are controlling the dialogue and decisions on many issues, at least within the party, and the party is doing very well all over.

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      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      @JonnyComeLately

      'Too much salt, any amount of trans fat, soda servings, are all pretty bad for us. Would you blame "Libs" for warning us about it?"

      Now you are changing the argument: 'warning' about it is not regulating it. I wrote 'regulating,' not 'warning.' And yes, I do blame Libs for regulating it.

      "Any trans fats are very bad for us. So is soda.... useless stuff, not good for our bodies."

      I agree, but so what? To apply the Liberal/Progressive argument for same-sex marriage -- it's none of your business and it doesn't affect you. You can't have it both ways: either apply that argument to both situations, or not. And don't tell me it affects you indirectly because salt and trans-fat cause people to get sick and require health care. I can list many ways that same-sex marriage indirectly affects me.

      "Burning coal is a big polluter of our atmosphere and a blight on our health."

      Not at all. There is clean coal. And cheap plentiful power is why we have a society in the first place.

      "Draining swamps and wetlands is depriving other creatures of their habitats, just for the benefit of big business to make a profit."

      Big Business creates jobs. Aren't you in favor of jobs? Obama is. So you are opposed to property rights. That's a Liberal/Progressive position. Also, have you read the definition of 'wetland' as written in to EPA regulations? You probably have a puddle in your backyard that is protected by Central Planning.

      "Using toilet flushes is unnecessary and expensive. Also creating pollution."

      Nope. A toilet flush keeps my habitat (bathroom) sanitary and reduces pollution. And the low-flow toilets legislated by Liberals/Progressives actually cause water to be wasted because people flush more than once. The low-flow toilets also increase housing costs, construction costs, and incentivize Americans to smuggle Canadian across the border. A classic example of the Law of Unintended Consequences.

      I am exhausted by scrolling up and down to copy/paste your text. I hate it when the comments are in descending chronological order. :)

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @nicomp "Hey, just like Liberals! Libs want to regulate salt, trans fat, school lunches, nuclear power, coal power, wetlands/swamps, health insurance, health care, employee overtime, soda servings, minimum wage, toilet flushes, birth control, and plastic bags."

      The churches need to be addressing these issues..... not blaming it on "Libs," when they stand up in protest at the abuses upon our world and its resources.

      Too much salt, (put into foods to make them so much more palatable), is very bad for us.... but convenient for the manufactures.

      Any trans fats are very bad for us. So is soda.... useless stuff, not good for our bodies.

      Coal power is highly polluting. Toilet flushes (the blue stuff) are not necessary and expensive.

      Plastic bags, released into the street then washed into the oceans are killing millions of marine life.

      Draining swamps and wetlands is depriving other creatures of their habitats, just for the benefit of big business to make a profit.

      If the conservatives, Republicans and churches criticize the Libs for standing up for a better world, then the Libs should be winning in my opinion.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @ nicomp, "....Hey, just like Liberals! Libs want to regulate salt, trans fat, school lunches, nuclear power, coal power, wetlands/swamps, health insurance, health care, employee overtime, soda servings, minimum wage, toilet flushes, birth control, and plastic bags...."

      Too much salt, any amount of trans fat, soda servings, are all pretty bad for us. Would you blame "Libs" for warning us about it?

      Draining wetlands/swamps, thus upsetting ecosystems and depriving other living things of their habitat and lives, is a very serious abuse of our world....by thoughtless, greedy people.

      Burning coal is a big polluter of our atmosphere and a blight on our health.

      Using toilet flushes is unnecessary and expensive. Also creating pollution.

      Plastic bags thrown into the environment and washed into the oceans is killing marine life like you never thought possible.

      If the Libs are against all of these, does it mean the conservative Republicans are all in favour of them? If churches support the abuse of resources, is this not seen as a "sin?"

      Just asking, not wishing to be critical of yourself, nicomp, because I don't know where you stand on this issue.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      "The Church seems to stick its nose in other people's business,"

      Hey, just like Liberals! Libs want to regulate salt, trans fat, school lunches, nuclear power, coal power, wetlands/swamps, health insurance, health care, employee overtime, soda servings, minimum wage, toilet flushes, birth control, and plastic bags.

      And Liberals want to use government to regulate these things. A church just wants to have an opinion.

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      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The Church seems to stick its nose in other people's business, yet it cannot control its own house, let alone the sins coming from it. An eye for an eye, for sure, and I am angst to say, they should watch their own backs. After all they literally, made their own bed within the confines of the stone walls so many centuries before. Why then, did the refuse women entry to the Good Old Boys' Club?

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      jonnycomelately, great stuff here. Thanks for sharing it.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      Folks, also with great respect from me for the various opinions asserted here in the Hub.

      I am not married, never will be. Not heterosexual, never will be. No children, never will have..... yet, I have an opinion in regards to "pro-life," abortion, women's rights.

      First, I feel everyone needs to take responsibility for what in reality is natural selection and biological process. In the natural way, woman attracts/is attracted to a man because she wants the attention and to procreate a child. A man attracts/is attracted to a woman because he wants the excitement and the feelings of sexual intercourse, and he has a genetic encoding that wants to perpetuate his genes. It's very much a give-and-take relationship, neither side having more rights/responsibilities than the other.

      The woman can employ all manner of tricks/instinctive methods to attract the man..... dress, perfume, voice, circumstances, location, pheromones, etc. In many cases, she is in charge of the coming together.

      The man may also be the instigator, the leader in the pursuit. He also can employ tricks. But how often is he mesmerized, lured into the nest by the woman? I don't know, you heterosexual guys will have to tell us.

      What I am really trying to say is, don't get hooked into the opinion that the guy is always at fault for getting the child underway, started in the womb. The woman must take some of the onus too.

      Now, a more contentious issue, I feel: While more and more fetuses are being brought to term, even when the fetus might in the natural course of events be aborted (because it's deformed, not perfect viable in any way), there are also many, many perfectly viable and complete fetuses being aborted simply for the convenience of those wanting to "dip their wick" without the burden of ongoing nuture.

      So, I suggest there is a lot of confusing and contradictory attitude to be sorted out before any sensible conclusion can be reached.

      You will not find a satisfactory answer until you can recognise procreation as an automatic result of natural intimacy, brought on by instinctive biological process.... then apply human intelligence and good sense to modify behaviour.

      I hope this adds useful food for thought to this Forum.

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Paula, no argument from me. I pretty much will go along with everything you've said. Women definitely trump men when it comes to having an opinion on this issue. My position is simple. Stop unwanted pregnancies before they happen by providing birth control to anyone of any age without parental consent. Just my opinion. Thanks for weighing in.

      I don't want to get too far astray from the topic of this hub, but a little discussion is appropriate here for now. Maybe a forum or question format would do later.

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      Paula 2 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      GentleMEN.....Excuse me and all due respect. YOU have the responsibility to utilize self-control, abstinence, condoms or voluntary sterilization. You have an obligation to respect yourself and the woman/women in your lives.

      However....quite naturally based upon nature and your gender....it is not possible for you to become pregnant. Women ONLY have this function. The uterous and thus a child are within the female body. This living child is a being within a being...a viable part of the woman's body.

      Personally, I am 100% pro-life without hesitation. But in support of all WOMEN....in all defense of and within rights and laws, should they exist......I WILL defend women's CHOICE. Period.

      IF my opinion is requested, I would surely advocate in support of "life," however I have the power or influence to do so. Arbitrarily, I have NO right nor would I PRESUME to have this right.

      Men can be pro-life, pro-choice, spit nickels or stand on their heads. Knock yourselves out. Until you can become impregnated carry this child within your body to term and subsequently birth a child, love, raise, fully support and give your entire LIFE to that child .......your stance is but a mere opinion that may or may not be noted by any woman at any time. This is just the way it is. As opened minded as I am with 98% of all issues......on this particular very preciously personal issue...........

      I'm as staunch as I can possibly be. ( to be fair, if you choose to argue with me, you need to know from my side, this is NOT up for debate........you'll have to argue with someone else. Thank you for understanding)

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp, no, I am not pro choice. My position on this topic would take a bit of explaining. I don't call myself prolife because I don't like being associated with that side either. The problem is that we have far too many abortions. I firmly believe that the unborn are lives that need to be saved. The prolife side is not doing everything they can to save those lives. They are preoccupied with legislation when they should be working in areas such as birth control. Thats the short answer.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      @cam8510 , just curious: are you pro-choice?

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      nicomp, Thanks for stopping in and sharing your thoughts on the issue. I do not consider myself a liberal, although I realize that on this particular issue, I have chosen a largely liberal position. It's good to have your viewpoint represented here in this thread.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

      The hypocrisy of "this doesn't affect your life" is staggering. Liberals crave regulation and central planing across innumerable aspects of my life, but now I am told to butt out. Hilarious.

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Marie, Thank you for stepping up and sharing how you feel on the topic. While you have shown that you have compassion and understanding for gay people, in my view, you are holding onto some types of thinking that won't stand up to scrutiny.

      For the most part, I am going to defer to jonnycomelately on the subject of the term marriage as it applies or does not apply to gays. Jonnycomelately has taken the same approach and used examples that I also would have chosen.

      Marriage has never been defined any other way than with heterosexuals in mind because for too much of the past, the homosexuals were hiding, and rightly so, in the closet. Throughout history, right up to today, gays have been discriminated against and even assaulted. No wonder they stayed hidden for so long.

      The modern LGBT movement has given courage to those who would otherwise remain hidden. They have stepped out and admitted, proudly, who they are. And now the definition of marriage is being challenged. It should be challenged.

      Children are not a requirement for marriage for reasons jonnycomelately has stated. One man/one woman is not a requirement for marriage. This is simply what predominantly happened in history and has therefore become the only acceptable arrangement in the minds of some. Many women's issues regarding equality would not be in the process of being resolved if we simply accepted how things were done in the past to be the proof of absolute truth. In the past, African Americans were not considered to be totally human. But now they are because we recognized that history is full of great errors. Marriage has been historically defined as being between a man and a woman simply because that arrangement was unchallenged. Now it is being challenged and to say that we've always done it this way will not satisfy those gay folks who are waiting to express their love to each other in the same way heterosexual couples do.

      Marie, I hope I stated this firmly, but without being judgmental. I understand your position, because for most of my life that was my way of thinking as well.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Ruby, thank you for reading and for your comment. Whenever I write about a controversial issue, I try to be balanced and treat people fairly. The one thing I avoid like the plague is to suggest that someone believes a particular way because the aren't smart enough to figure out the truth. Unfortunately, that attitude is displayed here on Hub Pages all too often.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      @Maria Flint, "... the fruit of natural childbirth through the union of such a couple is not possible."

      Maria, is this really an important consideration when two persons join in a committed relationship? How would you see two elder persons becoming married and living out the rest of their lives together? Or two persons who have extreme bodily deformity that prevents them having intercourse or even the ability to conceive a child? Or two persons, of whatever orientation, deciding that they don't wish to produce off-spring for whatever reason?

      What about those heterosexual couples who believe that having a child together will "heal" their marriage and make all nice again? Then they find the marriage is on the rocks, with the child suffering all manner of psychological difficulties, just because the parents used the child as a pawn in their matrimonial experiment?

      You see there are numerous arguments against that simplistic idea of having children to justify marriage. Also, you will see from other posts in this thread, that same-gender marriages can be more successful for both the parents and the children than some heterosexual unions. It just needs a more open mind to accept other possibilities.

      Surely, the simple fact that two people love each other is the primary grounds for marriage?

    • Marie Flint profile image

      Marie Flint 2 years ago from Jacksonville, Florida USA

      Good choice in topic, Chris. You should get some traffic on this one.

      My sister and I, who were both raised Catholics, seem to agree that the sanction that persons of a homosexual persuasion seek is not really "marriage," but acceptance (meaning no exclusion) by society. Let's face it, there have been some horrendous treatments of such persons by even family members. These people also want the same hospital visitation rights and tax benefits awarded to married couples. But is it a marriage in the truest sense? No, as the fruit of natural childbirth through the union of such a couple is not possible. Yes, they can adopt, but the function spiritually (an energy level) is not the same.

      Perhaps the legislators and the Court need to qualify semantics a bit. Maybe a choice on a tax form as a choice should read "Coupled" (or something similar), but it is not really a marriage.

      We are obligated as humanitarians, Christians, and Americans to help one another, regardless of sexual persuasion. Genetic and psychological circumstances are not ground for condemnation.

      Each of us has to daily weigh the possible repercussions of our thoughts, words, and actions. For what we mete comes back to us ten fold--and there's nothing the Supreme Court can do to change that.

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      The church oversteps it's authority when it attempts to dictate who should be married. Love is a wonderful thing. I am in no position to judge who should marry, I leave that up to God. A well written and balanced hub. I commend you Cam!!

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      WiccanSage, thanks for reading and commenting. On some subjects, our nation needs to sit back and take a nice long, deep breath. I've seen an interesting thing happen. As long as an Evangelical person is is able to keep LGBTs at a distance, he can maintain the judgmental, critical attitude. But I've seen such people have to deal with a son or daughter coming out and proclaiming they are gay. Quite often a transformation takes place. Sometimes slowly, at other times rapidly, the judgmental person gains understanding and an attitude of acceptance. This has been my experience even in my own family.

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      Mackenzie Sage Wright 2 years ago

      I think you hit the nail on the head; Christians should be free to follow the Bible & Christian laws in their lives, but everyone else should not be forced to do so by the government. It should be their own choice. Nice hub.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Hi Jacqui, I am so glad you took the risk and read my article. I've seen you in the forums before, so when I saw your name here, I had just enough background to know this issue was very relevant to you. Thank you for the kind words and for taking the time to read and comment.

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      Jacqui 2 years ago from New Zealand

      Thank you for a well balanced and informative article. I'd been avoiding reading it for a bit because I wasn't sure I was up to defending myself and people like me over and over again (like I've been having to lately!) but I was pleasantly surprised! You write well, and you've researched well. Thanks for sharing!

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Alan, you have shown that the issue has many tendrils reaching deep into our cultures. The behaviors you mentioned, the manipulation of people, the assault on individuals who are not willing participants, the "conversions", these are not normal homosexual behaviors. At least they do not represent the gay people I know. These are perversions and criminal activities which should be handled as such.

      Your example of the bakers and the gay wedding is a valid example of the difficult situations people can face. My main point has been that societies should not allow a minority to gain so much power that they can dictate their morality which is based on religious writing they, but not all, adhere to. Governments are not here to make us moral, but to make us as free and safe and secure as possible in order to live our own individual lives. This does cross over into morality at times, such as in the case of murder and theft. But even then, the main issue is not morality, but the safety and security of society. Morality is personal.

      Thank you for your valuable input here in these comments. I appreciate and respect your opinions.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Larry, I fully agree with you on that point. Thanks for making it. People of faith are Americans too. They have the right to speak out and have an impact. But what we are seeing is a political coup within the Republican party which, in my view, is delivering too much power to a segment of society that does not represent the majority. Having a voice in the political discussion is not the same as owning a political party and having an agenda that may well bring an end to the land of the free. Details of life, dictated by a minority who base their philosophy on a religious book that not everyone adheres to, is not freedom.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Ann, Thanks for commenting. These are not uniquely American issues. Many other countries are out ahead of us in working through the details, but our time has come. Thank you for pointing out some of the more delicate points. It is not a simple issue to navigate.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Shauna, Right On! That is just how I would prefer things to be. Why do Evangelicals feel obliged to manipulate the political machine against the LGBT community? The feel the have a biblical mandate to do so. I disagree. Why does government feel obliged to weigh in on the legality of any type of marriage. Well, part of it is the question of taxation. Single, married, filing jointly, separately etc. To bow out of the marriage issue, government would have to surrender the issue of taxing based on marital status. Otherwise, I see no good reason for government to be involved at all. Thanks for the great comments.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Eric, leave it to you to find a positive way to maneuver the issue. Thanks for doing that here in the comments.

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      Alan R Lancaster 2 years ago from Forest Gate, London E7, U K (ex-pat Yorkshire)

      Balanced and informative. There've been reactions here as well, such as the Northern Irish bakers asked by a gay couple for a wedding cake. They refused and were fined a hefty sum. They were in a quandary. Ulster is not a hotbed of homosexuality, and most - Protestant and Roman Catholic alike - have not plunged in at the deep end of morality by embracing same sex marriage. Had the bakers accepted the commission they could have faced economic ruin. In refusing they have demonstrated to the general public what their moral stance is, and will prosper. I don't judge them. I'm not Christian in my own morals - I'm a little heathen on the quiet - it makes my skin creep to hear the goings-on between men or women that you associate with heterosxual couples. I'd sooner not know, but 'couples' like Elton John and David Furnish push their regard for one another into the limelight.

      When I was at Scarborough - Yorkshire - in the mid-60's the resort was a known haven, and a young man on his own had to be on his guard. I had my knees and left thigh 'felt' once in the Odeon when I was about 16 and didn't go back. Another in my class was pursued by a known perpetrator who had a promotions business in town, ostensibly to do a design .job but it went beyond just business. Anyone who crossed P.P. was beaten up by his minders. The art, acting and music world is riddled and new 'conversions' are made all the time, some of the most revered actors, and musicians being gay. Legalising their unions could lead to difficulties for straight people in show biz or art.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      Well said, Bravewarrior.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Laws in this country are dictated by the community's ideas of decency and justice. So religion does play a role and as long as there is religion it will continue to, but that said, it is a role, not the only role.

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      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      A measured explanation of both sides, Chris. Obviously, I'm not an American citizen but I can see the dilemma. I am, however, a Christian and I think both Church and government (in any country) should be tolerant as well as respect people's lifestyles and orientation. Love is the most important, after all. I do, however, have reservations about gay marriage with regard to children and the creation thereof; a more delicate topic!

      Your hub is well-presented, well-argued and makes others think, as it should.

      Ann

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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      I can see why the government would step in regarding the legality of same sex marriage, but that's only because a license needs to be obtained in order to become husband and wife. Why do we need a license in the first place? The declaration of love and commitment is a personal one - not a legal one. If the license requirement were eradicated, there'd be no need for government to step in.

      Marriage is a personal bond between consenting parties. If the couple wants to bring God and the church into it, so be it. Not all people believe in God, so even if the church disapproves it really doesn't matter. I don't think God judges people on their sexual preferences, rather on the people themselves. Leave it up to Judgement Day. Government and the church need to stay out of it. Is it the church's job to determine God's will? No human can do that. If a same sex couple wants a priest or minister to conduct the ceremony, they should not be subjected to the dictates of entities.

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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Oh boy! I can jump right into this fray with both feet. I love my government. I know that is unpopular these days. But I think it is great. I think it works really well and I am grateful for it. I think churches are awesome and that everyone should find the time to attend and be a part of. Nobody but nobody takes care of people like churches do - heck it is their job. Right here right now in America I am free to criticize and try to improve both my churches and my government. Many people do that all the time and it really helps make them better.

      This here sexuality issue and debate has two great forums for us to debate and try to make things better, both church and state. Both churches and government are trying really hard to make life better for people of all sexual preference. For the most vocal part they seem to be somewhat split on this issue of gay marriage. Seems to me that they should be to a degree.

      Thanks for a great hub on the issues. I will go pray and then write a check for my taxes thank you very much.

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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      I completely agree with you on that point, jonnycomelately. But I do believe many if not most Evangelicals would consider it their responsibility to convince as many people as possible that homosexuality is a sin. There is not much of a live-and-let-live mentality in that camp. I've added a second poll to my hub since you visited. It asks, "Does the U.S. government have the responsibility to legislate with the wellbeing of the greatest number of citizens in mind or for Christians only?" Not sure how this one will be answered. It implies and extreme viewpoint that is scary to consider. Thanks for visiting and sharing.

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      Alan 2 years ago from Tasmania

      The Evangelical Christian Community has the freedom and the right to -regard- homosexuality to be a sin and an abomination to God, but it is -NOT- the responsibility of the Church -- to make that belief apply to every other person, of every other culture or community.

      To declare the opposite is arrogant, presumptuous. I reject the notion of a judgmental god. It's a tool of oppression.

      If the Evangelical Christian Community ever took over government of any country in this world, it would spell the end of "Separation of Powers." It would become a world dictatorship devoid of individual freedom. Period.

    • cam8510 profile image
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      Chris Mills 2 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Frank, thank you for that respectful response. I know many will not agree with my conclusions. I remember being in the fray on the Evangelical side. Even then I felt it was the responsibility of the Church to take its message directly to the people, not to the government. A respectful dialogue is what I hope for, and I appreciate you beginning that here in the comments on this hub.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      I couldn't weigh in an opinion, but nevertheless your hub was clear, consise.. and voided of contraversy.. in other words I respect your commentary on this topic... Frank

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