Archived blog post

Sanctity of Marriage (For our U.S. Readers)

Posted by JGJ on Thursday, June 08, 2006 | Permalink
 

Well I initially thought I would not post on this since this is a dying issue for the Federal Government. They just took the issue off the floor of Congress failing even to meet the number of votes they had two years ago when this topic was approached. It will end up in the courts for each state until it reaches the Supreme Court to make a ruling where they will likely uphold the status quo and leave it up to the states to make the decision themselves.

Personally I think it is a religious issue divided among party lines and the Republicans will be using it to keep the conservative voters in their corner as dissatisfaction grows with the President. The message they will send out during the next election will be that they either have to support Republican leadership no matter how bad they are screwing up or support gay marriage.

It is a religious issue in the sense that conservatives call it protecting the "sanctity of marriage." I suppose they protect marriage's sanctity by allowing you to be married by the variety of freaks out in Vegas such as Elvis impersonators, aliens, drive through windows and the like. Yep, that's traditional religious values I suppose and needs to be protected.

Marriage is not a federally regulated social phenomenon and for them to step into the arena is a bigger issue of stepping on states rights to govern themselves. Sure, the federal government regulates Native American marriage under Title 25 CFR, federal prisons, immigration and the like but not who constitutes man and wife with one exception and that is Veteran Affairs. Title 38 CFR"Spouse. ``Spouse'' means a person of the opposite sex whose marriage to the veteran meets the requirements of Sec. blah blah blah..." This kind of throws out the "don't ask don't tell" policy of the military if a same sex marriage took place between a same sex couple after military service since the surviving same sex spouse would be denied a death benefit.

There are numerous legal concerns over same-sex marriage such as states have to accept the marriages performed in other states, protection by the law that married couples get, allowing sodomy (currently illegal) and tax status among many others. So allowing same sex marriage in one state and not another would be a hassle but not impossible. The majority of the concerns proposed are "moral" or religious in nature and have nothing to do with the law itself. The debate, when it hits your state's legislature, needs to be defined honestly. Is it a legal issue or a religious issue for you and if it is a legal issue then keep "sanctity of marriage" comments out of the debate. If it is a religious issue then it should not be in the law so as to keep a separation between religion's idea of what is right and wrong out of the law. The choice is up to you come voting time.

The Establishment and Free Exercise Clause is what will be the main issue for the courts to decide upon. They really need a good definition for this and historically it has been all over the board, both narrow and broad. The broad meaning is to forbid the government to financially support a national religion such as the Catholic Church but they have financially supported Christian missions to the Native Americans. The narrow meaning, such as those described by Jefferson and Madison, is to protect the freedom of the individual and keep a wall between church and state. See http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/conlaw/estabinto.htm

If the Sanctity of Marriage is the main concern and not the state's right to govern themselves or legal issues surrounding same sex marriages; then the Supreme Court needs to make a firm decision between narrow and broad interpretations of the Establishment and Free Exercise Clause for this issue and many others to make headway in any direction. One of the religious arguments against same sex marriage has been that it will lead to polygamy, child molestation, restrictions on the religious, threaten their tax-exempt status (I'm for that), and other things even more freaky. But of course the same could be said for not allowing gay marriage in that it could lead to more control over our lives by the major religious institutions on what is permissable and not. It could lead to every theater being allowed to only show The Sound of Music and book burnings. Personally, I think that gays should form their own religion and get thier benefits that way. It would be less of a hassle in the long run than trying to overthrow the power of the Religious Right. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Comments [ hide comments ]
I think we need to define terms here.

What is "sanctity".

Marriage is a big step for any couple. Therefore it is going to imbued with people's perceptions of it as a big step in their lives. It is an act rich in symbolism.

Personally I am not in favour of trying to sanctify gay anal sex.

Personally I think the British compromise is probably best: retain monogamous heterosexual marriage and have a parallel system of civil partnerships.

If you are saying gay partnerships must be recognised as marriage, where do you stop? Why not recognise troilism, or polygamy, or fetishistic partnerships? You can't oppose them can you?

Advances in genetic/medical science may change the scene.
There is in principle no reason why a man should not have a
baby - in which case gay partnerships based on having children will be so close to heterosexual partnering that we may need to reconsider.
field, 08.06.2006, 9:18am #
I think most people over here also see this as political desperation, trying to hold on to support from the right wing xians.

Isn't the word sanctity derived from "sacred?"

Most arguments against gay marriage tend to be the of the conservative arguing from the floodgates variety (once you legitimise one type of un-natural partnership soon everyone will want the same rights and people will be marrying their dogs and the human race will die out) or some nonsense about it affecting hetrosexual marriage (without actually stating how).
Tim, 08.06.2006, 10:59am #
Tim, that's exactly the point I was trying to make in my last paragraph. The argument supporting all the things they predict will happen if they allow same sex marriage can be turned around with things predicted by allowing the Federal Government to regulate soley by religious ideals. To me, it doesn't matter if they allow it or not, I have no stake in it. There are some good arguments out there against gay marriage that have nothing to do with the sanctity of marriage and those should be focused on rather than religious ideals. By proclaiming marriage as a sacred institution, one grounded in religious beliefs, it takes away from the non-religious marriages sanctity, not bound by religious belief. The "Sanctity" can go either way and by arguing on religious grounds at the Federal Government level violates the broad interpretation of the Establishment and Free Excercise Clause and upholds the narrow view. This is why the definition of "Sanctity" is important on the federal and state levels when it is used in debate or it should be removed all together as a basis for argument. Divorce itself violates the religious sanctity of marriage unless it follows the reasons listed in the bible but not if you remove the sanctity argument of marriage. Some current divorce laws do this but you don't see them crying over it calling marriage sacred and not allowed to divorce outside of Christian idealism.

Field, I'm not saying that gay marriage should or should not be recognized and you stop at gay marriage until the next issue arises. Just because you legalize killing someone in self-defense or any number of analogies doesn't mean you have to keep going and legalize killing in the name of religion. Same sex marriages are the issue at hand because they are denied benefits of heterosexual marriages and have nothing to do with allowing other forms of lifestyles legal benefit. I'm saying remove the religious argument and stick with the legal aspects of the issue.
JGJ, 08.06.2006, 9:58pm #
JGJ -

Don't think your analogy works.

Killing people in the name of religion is wrong full stop.

Troilism isn't wrong in principle. Three people might find they can make such a relationship work. But society has to decide whetehr it is a good idea to provide a "sanctified" legal framework for such relationships.

I can't see in principle why if gay marriage is a good idea, troilistic marriage or polygamy isn't.

Free heterosexual marriage is one of the foundations of the modern stable liberal state. We need to guard against it being undermined in my view.
field, 09.06.2006, 9:14am #
Troilistic marriage and polygamy being a good or bad idea was not your point, field, it is whether legalizing same sex marriage will lead to legalizing
other forms of partnerships. My analogy works, legalizing one type of killing doesn't lead to legalizing other types of killing. I also didn't say it was the only analogy, I said "any number of analogies" for your benefit alone because I was positive you would attack the analogy. I left the door open for you, specifically, to create your own analogy that would fit your idea. Making same sex marriage legal or illegal because it is a good or bad is not the point of my post either. Using religion as an argument in legal battles is.
JGJ, 09.06.2006, 2:49pm #
I'm not entirely sure what the 'sanctity' of marriage has to do with the legal perspective on marriage.

Neither am I sure where anal sex between homosexuals comes into it. Does it challenge the sanctity of a man having anal sex with his wife?

With the British compromise, the mere fact that civil partnership is different carries an implication of inferiority (unintended or otherwise). I personally find it both a big step forward and a considerable insult. I'm bisexual, the gender of my partner is more or less irrelevant to me. The idea that I would have to enter into a different marriage contract based on the gender of my partner strikes me as rather nonsensical, in the same way that having a different type of partnership based on the colour of my partner's skin, hair or eyes seems rediculous. (But obviously better than not being able to engage in a recognised partnership at all)

A hypothetical reason for a person (of any sexuality) not to have a child, is to prevent overpopulation. We can't keep increasing the human population indefinitely. As an added aside, the idea that (legal) marriage is an instruction for people to have children would be unconstitutional here in Britain, where the law generally doesn't force people to act.

I'm not sure how heterosexual marriage is a foundation of the modern liberal state and how gay marriage, or any other different forms of marriage, pose a threat to it.
AC, 09.06.2006, 7:50pm #
AC,
Marriage is a sacred institution between a man and a woman. Today's decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court violates this important principle. I will work with congressional leaders and others to do what is legally necessary to defend the sanctity of marriage. --George W. Bush
JGJ, 10.06.2006, 12:36am #
GAYS WILL ROAST IN HELL.
RHF, 10.06.2006, 6:28pm #
JGJ -

Why is not respectable for someone to refer to his religious beliefs in an argument over legal regulation of relationships e.g. that each of us has an immortal soul but it is to say refer to the fact that each of us is affected by our hormone balance.

How is the hormone balance issue any more or less relevant to the debate that one's (religious) view of humanity's place in the cosmos?
field, 10.06.2006, 8:27pm #
Homosexuality is wrong!!!

wrong!!

wrong!!

man and woman not man and man or woman and woman.
RHF, 10.06.2006, 9:03pm #
Thank God for George Bush, the greatest president american has ever had.
Christians will never elect an atheist.
We must protect the sanctity of marrige, which is between a man and woman.

Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.
RHF, 10.06.2006, 9:05pm #
Field,
Because the religious interference in the making of laws IS the topic. It is not a problem to refer to your religious beliefs but it is a problem when the sole arguement given for the law is religious beliefs. Read the post. It is a call to better define the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. As it is, the anal leftists in this country like to remove anything religious from government buildings, personally I can't see how it bothers me at all but when you decide to make a law soley on the basis of religion that effects the people who do not follow that religion it becomes an establishment of religion.
JGJ, 10.06.2006, 9:06pm #
RHF, since your the religious nut here, could you give a reason not related to religion for outlawing same sex marriage? Let's see if you can manage a serious reply for a change.
JGJ, 10.06.2006, 9:08pm #
JGJ -

You haven't answered the question. We know YOU don't like people making decisions on a religious basis but you haven't explained why someone making them on the basis of say hormonal research or sociobiological analysis is less reprehensible.

It seems to me your founding fathers meant to prevent the establishment of a state religion for the USA (although the individual states did, strangely, have established churches at the time) - not to prevent the religious influence in the affairs of man.

RHF - You seem incapable of constructing an argument, even one based on the Bible. OK, then if there really was only Adam and Eve to begin with, who did Cain or Abel have sex with to create the next generation - and is the obvious answer an argument FOR incest?
field, 11.06.2006, 1:27am #
It's in the post Field. And I've already answered in replies. Philosophical debate regarding the issue of which is more or less reprehensible is not the topic. If you want to debate the philosophy of morality you won't get it here.
JGJ, 11.06.2006, 3:36am #
JGJ -

Having read the post in detail I can't see anywhere that you say either someone can or cannot enter the debate from a scientific point of view. I am assuming that because you idenitfy the religious viewpoint as an issue, you don't see a problem with people bringing scientific views to bear. But why not?

Your thinking on this seems to be all over the place. What are you trying to say? Everything to do with a law is a legal issue. That doesn't preclude bringing their non-legal beliefs to bear on the issue. As far as I am concerned the freer and more open the debate the better - let people bring religious, scientific, philosophical, social and other views to bear. That's what happens in a free democracy.
field, 11.06.2006, 2:28pm #
JGJ, since your the intellectual wannabe on this site, try talking sense for once.
You don't like the USA, get out and go live in cuba or fag canada.

You delete most of my posts, so why should I bother to answer you?
Many reasons for outlawing same sex marriage:

1. Stability of families, and population growth. Promoting homosexuality as an alternative lifestyle destabilizes the foundation of our nation.

2. Sex was designed between a man and woman. Doesn't fit the other way JGJ. The rectum was engineered for another purpose. Not much fun wearing diapers in your 40's.

3. Allowing Gays to get married will not bring any stability to their unnatural relationships. Read your statistics on the number of partners they have over a lifetime.

4. Heterosexuals live longer and more productive lives.

5. Deep down, everyone knows homosexuality is wrong.
RHF, 11.06.2006, 4:39pm #
Field,
You can say all you want about same sex marriage from the scientific point of view. By all means, bring your views to bear. But that doesn't mean that I'm going to enter into a debate about your views. I haven't seen your views yet, only questions that I'm not going to get into since it doesn't have anything to do with the post. Perhaps the following will explain it more. I said the issue was basing the law on religion alone. When you base a law upon a religious belief and impose it upon those who don't follow those religious beliefs you violate the freedoms of the non-religious or those who follow other religions. I'm sure you wouldn't like living in a country that forced their religious beliefs upon you, like say...Iran or Afghanistan (Taliban Era), etc.

Im not saying that things like murder and the like, which are mentioned by religious belief but are universally (usually) unacceptable behavior, should be allowed because someone who doesn't follow the religion that mentions it disagrees so don't start that line. I'm saying that things like non-violent social issues which have very little impact upon those the law does not directly affect should not be imposed by religious beliefs alone. It is making laws that do not affect those for whom the laws were not designed for and that the people affected do not disrupt the peace of society only the religious values of those the law does not affect. One group imposing its will upon another based on religioius beliefs alone is theocracy, not democracy.

RHF,
1. The stability of your family will be brought down by homosexuals? Is your family that weak?

2. Designed? Can't drop the religion, can you? And if gays end up wearing diapers in the 40's I'll be laughing right along with you.

3. There is nothing that I like about allowing same sex marriage. My point was not allowing same sex marriage, I find the sexual acts of homosexuality disgusting but I can't stand to see the law regulated by religious belief alone.

4. I can't see where you get "more productive" other than having children. I'm assuming you don't mean financial or social.

5. I don't like blanket statements but I am one of those who do think it to be quite unnatural.
JGJ, 11.06.2006, 7:14pm #
JGJ -

So you are happy for marriage laws to be based on say teh science of eugenics?
field, 12.06.2006, 8:29am #
Based how?
JGJ, 12.06.2006, 8:56am #
Field - put very simply, science attempts to ask how, philosophy asks why - both things people can have a rational discussion (or argument) about.
Religions are dogmatic. Why should anyone obey the laws apparently created by a deity the don't believe exits?
Tim, 12.06.2006, 10:24am #
i see RHF is back...

and for that whole "protecting our children" thingy, my friend and his sister who live under the same roof of a homosexual mother do just fine. they are both very bright, they're straight as an arrow (but not narrow minded)and they are turning out jsut fine.

and for that matter, i see homosexuality as a natural phenomenon. those are my two cents.
Shaggy, 13.06.2006, 9:54pm #
oh, and that reminds me...i got a call a few weeks ago from the anti gay marraige association (or whatever it was called, you get the idea, right?)

so anyways, the person on the other line went on for about five mninutes on how the USA was jesus land and that we should all ban gay marraige, etc, land under gods heel...long story short, i had a field day with em' :)
Shaggy, 13.06.2006, 9:59pm #
This is a difficult issue. I would agree with field that the Brits way of handling it seems reasonable. To AC's comment, "With the British compromise, the mere fact that civil partnership is different carries an implication of inferiority (unintended or otherwise).",
please take a moment to get over yourself before reading the following newsflash:

Homosexual-marriage IS different than Heterosexual- marriage. Thats why the hyphen or an adjective is used to further classify the relationship. I believe that homosexuality is a perfectly natural and innate phenomenon since there are many documented cases of homosexuality throughout the animal kingdom, as well as among the varying cultures throughout human history. However, it IS an abnormal phenomenon (literally 'away from' normal) - makes sense as it would HAVE to be in order for a species to breed itself into a sustainable existence. If nature has selected me to be bisexual or homosexual, I would hope I have the common sense and honesty to realize it is the minority orientation and therefore different from the normal orientation. I also hope I would be secure enough in my orientation not to develop an inferiority complex with every social manifestation of this difference. I value my individuality, and would never take any aspect of it that sets me apart from the 'norm' as a reason to feel inferior.

The definition of marriage has always been restricted to male/female union, and I do not agree with the approach that we need to start hypenating or redefining words in order to be fair and just to all persons within the society.

I think it is perfectly appropriate to have an alternate term for an alternate lifestyle (alternate to what has been traditionally accepted as normal or natural), and then to have the legal issues regarding the union be dealt with equally. I think the problem is one of education versus one of semantics, therefore that is ultimately where the solution lies.
Alternate lifestyles gain acceptance and legitamacy as a culture becomes more educated, shedding ignorance, intolerance and closed-minded tendancies, not from a simple forced redefinition of its vocabulary.
reason, 13.06.2006, 11:05pm #
Some people have problems picturing two men screwing (or two women...if they aren't hot)...
Marriage is nothing; how could it be so great with all those divorces because people aren't living the way they truly would like to.

Maybe if these jerks asked their wives nicely, they too could get some much needed anal sex!
Intergalactic Hussy, 14.06.2006, 12:29am #
reason,

Thanks for the reality check. Obviously this is a very emotional issue for me, so I'm not entirely rational when it comes to discussing it.

Part of my response stems from the way that bisexuality is often disbelieved in, and a false dichotomy between heterosexuality and homosexuality occurs (I read a news 'short' a few months ago that said a research paper had been published in which it was claimed that male bisexuals didn't exist. Unfortunately, I never managed to find out any more details about it). To a certain extent, I saw the difference between marriage and civil partnerships as a legistation of that false dichotomy.
AC, 16.06.2006, 11:20pm #
MEN WOULD NEVER HAVE BELIEVED IN THE PRINCIPLES OF MODERN THEOLOGY IF THEY HAD NOT BEEN TAUGHT AT AN AGE WHEN THEY WERE INCAPABLE OF REASONING.

"The instructors of the human race act very prudently in teaching men their religious principles before they are able to distinguish the true from the false, or the left hand from the right. It would be as difficult to tame the spirit of a man forty years old with the extravagant notions which are given us of Divinity, as to banish these notions from the head of a man who has imbibed them since his tenderest infancy."
Jean Meslier, 1732
Rx, 19.06.2006, 4:51pm #
Field,
Forced Eugenics can be inherently anti-social which is why I asked how you meant it to be based. I'm sure you would agree that the abhorrant practice of forcibly sewing up women's vaginas is a practice that should be removed from any society. This is why I asked "Based how?" and didn't just accept a blanket statement that it would be ok. Forced non-invasive contraception should only be used in the direst of circumstances such as inbreeding and extreme overpopulation. Eugenics based upon purely religious moral reasons when forced upon unwilling participants who do not follow the religious practices is not the way to do things. Homosexuals do not reproduce unless through heterosexual practices. There is no evidence that firmly shows that homosexuality is either an inherited trait or purely choice. Using eugenics to weed out homosexual behavior would be ineffective for obvious reasons.

The reason it is better to base laws upon science rather than religion is that not all people follow all religious principles. When cetain religious principles are forced upon a non-religious or differing religious public it is no more than theocratic majority rule. That is not to say that all religious beliefs are bad for the public since many religious beliefs coincide with common moral grounds accepted by nearly all cultures and are not the jurisdiction of religions alone.

Could you defend statements such as these?

"All diseases of Christians are to be ascribed to demons; chiefly do they torment freshly-baptized Christians, yea, even the guiltless new-born infants." Saint Augustine (354-430 CE)

"When you believe in something, you have to believe it all the way. If you only believe in it part way, it's not a true belief." Roger Winterbourne. Five of his children died of pneumonia between 1971 and 1980 without receiving medical attention because of his religious beliefs.

If implicit religious nuts were the majority and they agreed that modern medicine was illegal and that healing should only be done through prayer, I am sure that when you or a loved one becomes ill you would want the best possible treatment regardless of the majority's religious beliefs. If that belief was made law you would be screaming bloody murder when your child died because God did not answer your prayer. You would also work to make sure that the law did not apply to those who did not follow that belief. You are the one being naive and childish if you think that laws based purely upon the religious beliefs of some should be forced upon all; especially when there is no evidence to suggest that allowing homosexual marriages would be in any way a danger to society other than those dangers posed to the religious moral code of only a part of a society.
JGJ, 19.06.2006, 10:23pm #
^reminds me of scientology :P

and why does rhf keep insisting that i am gay? i have never said a thing to show that i lean towards the male gender.
Shaggy, 20.06.2006, 7:07am #
JGJ -

You seem deliberately to be avoiding the question - and with good reason.

Firstly, ALL laws involve force. So to try and make a distinction between FORCED eugenics in a legal setting and any other type is redundant.

The issue is whether law makers can rightly be advised and persuaded by scientists, and if so why that is preferable to religious attempts at advice and persuasion.

Why is it not acceptable to have religious people argue for the sanctity of marriage but it is acceptable for scientists to argue for compulsory vaccination of my child, even though that child may be damaged by the vaccine?

It seems to me a really stupid line of argument. Fine, if you want to argue that religion is a poor guide to public policy. That's you right. But I fail to see why you should be allowed to close off debate, to argue that some forms of opinion are simply not permissible. That doesn't sound like free speech or democracy to me.

I'm not arguing for religion-based law. I am arguing that religion is simlpy one factor among many that will play a part in influencing decisions and there is nothing wrong with that.

If some religion prevented me having access to a medicine (as scientists certianly DO currently restrict which medicines I may take) then I have to make a decision about whether to stay a member of that political community or go somewhere else where I can get the drugs involved. HOwever the first response should be to argue the case for a change of policy.
field, 20.06.2006, 1:56pm #
I'm deliberately avoiding the question? I guess you are just blind. Read the second paragraph, I didn't think I would have to draw you a map.

All laws are not forced. Murder is against the law but I can go out and kill anyone I want to. I know I will pay the price but I can still do it. Making same sex marriage against the law would be forcing, they won't be able to do it in this country. Forcing some forms of eugenics upon the unwilling is not redundant, use common sense Field.

You are arguing for religion based law because the only argument against same sex marriage is the religious one. Having someone's religious belief influence law is not a problem unless it is the only factor and when it applies to the non-religious, I have said this over and over. It might not sound like free speech to you but it does sound like a breech of separation of church and state when using a specific religious belief to create a specific law. Ask a Buddhist if same sex marriage violates his religious code.
JGJ, 20.06.2006, 2:30pm #
Field,

Field "What is sanctity?"

Sanctity of Marriage as used in this blog entry the argument on religious grounds that marriage is between a man and a woman, made or declared holy or an institution bound by God's law.

Marriage is a sacred institution between a man and a woman. Today's decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court violates this important principle. I will work with congressional leaders and others to do what is legally necessary to defend the sanctity of marriage. George W. Bush
Arguments given as justification for outlawing same sex marriage.
1. The legalization of homosexual marriage will quickly destroy the traditional family.
2. Children will suffer most.
3. Public schools in every state will embrace homosexuality.
4. Adoption laws will be instantly obsolete.
5. Foster-care programs will be impacted dramatically.
6. The health care system will stagger and perhaps collapse.
7. Social Security will be severely stressed.
8. Religious freedom will almost certainly be jeopardized.
9. Other nations are watching our march toward homosexual marriage and will follow our lead.
10. The gospel of Jesus Christ will be severely curtailed.
11. The culture war will be over, and the world may soon become €œas it was in the days of Noah (Matthew 24:37).

Percentage of divorces due to irreconcilable differences in 1997: 80% Though the Bible gives adultery as the only justifiable reason.
Percentage of births which were to unmarried women in 1997: 32%
In 1996, children of divorce were 50% more likely than their counterparts from intact families to divorce.
Fatherless homes account for 63% of youth suicides, 90% of homeless/runaway children, 85% of children with behavior problems, 71% of high school dropouts, 85% of youths in prison, well over 50% of teen mothers. All this without same sex marriage and while preserving the of marriage.



Field €œPersonally I am not in favour of trying to sanctify gay anal sex.
How would that affect you personally?

Field €œPersonally I think the British compromise is probably best: retain monogamous heterosexual marriage and have a parallel system of civil partnerships.
How do heterosexual marriage and civil partnerships differ other than in name and the sex of those involved?

Field - If you are saying gay partnerships must be recognised as marriage, where do you stop?
The same arguments that are given against same sex marriage were given for interracial marriages.

Field €œWhy is not respectable for someone to refer to his religious beliefs in an argument over legal regulation of relationships
Refer all you like, but like I have said several times before and after.. It is not a problem to refer to your religious beliefs but it is a problem when the sole arguement given for the law is religious beliefs.

Field - You haven't answered the question. We know YOU don't like people making decisions on a religious basis but you haven't explained why someone making them on the basis of say hormonal research or sociobiological analysis is less reprehensible.

Part 2 of your question “ Because not all people follow the specific religious beliefs being laid down as law. Hormonal research or sociobiological analysis makes no moral claims that are made into law that deny the rights given to us by the Constitution. Teaching one type of creationism in public schools violates the establishment clause whereas teaching evolution as theory establishes no religious beliefs, and those who wish to learn creationism can and should get their education in their respective church where it is not supported by tax dollars. Imposing specific religious education with tax funding establishes religion. If churches were taxed I would be all for creating an optional creationism course in public schools. Churches demand representation without taxation, not even our founding fathers required this. Scientific studies and institutions are taxed and pay for their representation in public schools and law. Therefore, I'll say it again, creating a social law based soley upon religious law is wrong and violates the establishment and free exercise clause and the establishment clause needs to be completely defined as either the strong or weak definition.

All the arguments given for denying same-sex marriages are either based in the Christian Bible or purely speculative and the same as those given against interracial marriage many years ago and were proven to be false. More scientific research is needed to justify the religious belief that homosexuality is choice or a genetic trait before any arguments against the legal rights of homosexuals can be made. No scientific study has conclusively shown that it is either.

The statement that marriage is a sacred institution cannot be justified in light of the statistics given for the current state of the institution and the religious argument is hypocritical since current laws already violate Christian religious beliefs and yet they do nothing to have them changed. Reality television shows such as The Bachelor, Who Wants to Marry My Dad, the wife swapping shows, and the like as well as the multiple marriages by actors, actresses, rockstars, supermodels, hokey Vegas weddings by Elvis impersonators, people in alien costumes, common law marriages, being married by a justice of the peace, or without ceremony, ship captains and the like are all legal and represent the 'sanctity' that the religious right is trying to protect. Even incestual marriage is legal in some states.
JGJ, 21.06.2006, 12:41am #
Field €œPersonally I am not in favour of trying to sanctify gay anal sex.

I did like that - presumably he's bang up alongside the idea of sanctifying straight anal sex, and possibly golden showers and BDSM. Or maybe the variety of sex to be performed on the honeymoon isn't really the point, and marriage should just be viewed as two people who love each other pledging to be together for the rest of their lives? Unless he's of the "ooh, buggery is dirty!" bent (ha!), I really can't see what field's problem is.
Ben, 21.06.2006, 7:37am #
JGJ -

You seem determined to avoid answering my specific points, so I won't repeat them. Suffice to say your argument is a very narrow one. On the basis of the constitutional ban on established religion (which is itself debatable as you must know that several states actually had established churches when the constitution was agreed between the states - so it was originally thought of as only a ban on a federal church) you seek to prevent any reference to religion in political debate - which is an absurdist position. Reference to the ban on inter-racial marriages is interesting since at the time those bans were in force they were justified as much on the grounds of science as of religion.

Ben -

No of course I don't sacntify hetero anal sex and yes I do think buggery is dirty as most right thinking people do. It's not a matter of sexual choice, all the statistics show it has a devastating effect on health. As for golden showers, that is certainly not my thing however urine being a pretty clean products (full of anti-biotics and one is not talking of misuse of the excretory channel) there is little harm to health I think.

People's health choices do affect me and whilst I'm not asking the state to go into the bedroom, equally the state has to speak out when certain practices are clearly deleterious to people's health. Even liberal San Francisco had eventually to close the bath houses, in order to prevent the disgusting practices going on there.
field, 21.06.2006, 9:09am #
I'm not going to get into the health effects because it's pointless with regards to this argument - detrimental or not, it's the choice of the person performing it. My point is that if you're not ok about sanctifying straight anal sex (our site hits are going to go through the roof, aren't they?) then why focus on the gay variety? What's the point of focusing at all on what goes on in the bedroom when you're arguing about gay marriage? After all, like straight people, there's no compulsion for gay people to do it, there's plenty else they can be getting on with. Straight people do it too (and spare me your pose as the spokesman for the "right-thinking" people) so to use it as an anti-gay marriage argument is bollocks. And what the fuck have San Francisco bath houses got to do with gay marriage?? Just admit that you don't like bummers and be done with it, stop pretending you've got a rational basis for this argument. You might not like it, but then just don't do it.

My own thoughts on gay marriage are this: if they want a religious marriage, and they can find someone to do it, fine. If a religious bod refuses to marry them based on his/her beliefs, also fine. But a specific law banning gay marriage, not fine.
Ben, 22.06.2006, 8:25pm #
JGJ -

I think you are wrong to say that science makes no moral claims.

Or to put it another way, where is the moral claim in the following statement: "There is only one God and his Prophet is Mohammed"? There is no moral claim there. You only have to say it three times and you are Muslim. That's all you are signing up to. Similarly if I recall correctly, the Christian credos don't make any moral claims either. They state as fact certian things: there is a God, with three aspects, the son was killed on the cross and rose again etc - all factual claims.

Similarly with sociobiology, a sociobiologist does not make any claim on me other than to ask me to agree he is giving an objective account of reality.

But if I start looking at the world through the sociobiological lens then I think that does give me a certain moral vision. And be assured - individual sociobiologists have appleid their knowledge to moral issues.
field, 24.06.2006, 1:09pm #
I don't thing I have ever seen a more ignorant statement, is this field or RHF?
JGJ, 24.06.2006, 3:40pm #
if youre a religious nut, what are you doing trolling on a website called religionisbullshit?
Derp, 28.04.2012, 1:31pm #

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