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This whole gay-marriage fiasco - Continued...

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Local Rebel
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50 posted 03-06-2004 09:10 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Two things Brad:

1. Sacremental Covenant

2. Legal Contract

The government doesn't, and can't, prohibit a religious organization from conducting the first without the second -- and could niether force same.

The only difference between Civil Unions then and the Marrige Contract is words -- which is why the doublespeak is so silly.

But letting the traditionalists have their double-speak while allowing gays thier due civil rights seems like a decent compromise for now.

There then would be no barrier to say -- two single people forming a civil union for the fringe benefits if they were just room mates -- such as a couple of elderly spinsters or some young bachelors going to college... eh?
Essorant
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51 posted 03-06-2004 11:48 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Good point Local.  
I don't think the Greeks segregated sexualities anything like we do today.  Love was love, and sex was too.
Essorant
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52 posted 03-07-2004 12:02 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

" The 'gay' gene in males is located somewhere in the Xq28 region"


You can't miss it.  It is right near the " nibbling on the ear" gene, area XOXOX  
Brad
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53 posted 03-07-2004 03:50 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

LR,

Don't you think you're missing something. Like what went through your head when you actually got married?

Sorry for asking the question.
Local Rebel
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54 posted 03-07-2004 09:28 AM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

I didn't think I had to be that specific
Brad  

ok...

1. Sacremental Covenant, to have and to hold,forsaking all others until death, yadda yadda yadda -- bring on the honeymoon these two are hitched...

2. All of your money now belongs to her pal...



Better?

(or do I have to say Sex?  because -- I don't know -- do people actually wait for that anymore?)
hush
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55 posted 03-07-2004 10:13 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

LR-

The way it was explained to me by my Latin teacher was that in Roman times, it was so common for people to form same-sex trysts that there really was no classification for it. You just did it... it was normal. SO by their standards, it would be silly to call someone bisexual, because as far as they were concerned, hell, they were just sexual and reaping the benefits of a wide selection. But by today's standards, that doesn't fly... people always want to know, so they can classify and compartmentalize how they think about others.

Essorant...

A. How can you presume to know whether sex was based on love back in Roman times? I personally think you just have a serious case of nostalgia, because in my opinion, you're mistaken... a good example:

When I was in Italy, we toured Pompeii. Are you familiar with the city? It was covered in volcanic ash when Mt. Vesuvius exploded in...? 62 AD? I'm wrong, but it was therabouts. Anyway, one of the most interesting things on the tour was the brothel. There were small, individual rooms, and they were marked above the door with a picture- of what position was practiced inside. Guys could get it any which way they wanted.. and here's the kicker. Outside, in the streets, little phalluses were carved into the stones, 'pointing' the way. Our tour guide told us this was common in many roman towns.

So... more based on love? No... I just don't think they were as repressed and double-sided about their sexuality as we are... there wasn't a taboo about it, and -hey, here's a novel idea- prostitution wasn't banned!

So... what makes sexual excess okay back then but not now?
sea_of_okc
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56 posted 03-07-2004 01:20 PM       View Profile for sea_of_okc   Email sea_of_okc   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for sea_of_okc

Actually Ess I think the gene is located right next to the pedaphilia gene... so what next, will we be standing up shouting that Chester next door should be allowed to marry a ten year old?

I will have to study the research that LR mentions. I highly doubt it is conclusive but will have a look to be fair.

One more thing, I have seen a number of people mention "love" in this discussion. I do not believe love has any place in a discussion about the legality of gay marriage. Love being unquantifyable cannot be used in any way as a measure of whether or not something is legal/illegal, moral/immoral, appropriate or inappropriate.

For me the whole issue comes down to whether or not being gay is a preference or an inescable genetic predisposition. If it is a preference then I don't think it should receive any more legal attention then say the Yippies preference to smoke weed over drinking alcohol. If we start allowing legal protection for everyone's preferences then nothing would be illegal anymore...
sea_of_okc
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57 posted 03-07-2004 01:47 PM       View Profile for sea_of_okc   Email sea_of_okc   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for sea_of_okc

As I thought, Hamer's and Levay's work are scientifically unsound. People hailed him as genius because he told them what they wanted to believe... they are not responsible for their own actions or choices since it is genetic.

I tend to agree more with George Ebers:
http://www.bol.ucla.edu/~kmayeda/HC92/limitations.html#hamerincons

Besides if we go down the path of human sexuality being based in genetics then what about rapists, pedaphiles, sado masichists, etc. etc. If they are gentically predisposed to these tendencies then how can we call any of their actions illegal?
Janet Marie
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58 posted 03-07-2004 02:05 PM       View Profile for Janet Marie   Email Janet Marie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Janet Marie

quote:
Actually Ess I think the gene is located right next to the pedaphilia gene... so what next, will we be standing up shouting that Chester next door should be allowed to marry a ten year old?



The comparison of pedophiles to consenting adults is tacky, uncalled for and disappointing in a discussion that (for the most part) has tried to explore with open minds. Seems we always see these kind of degrading homophobic analogies tagged on to discussions whenever the subject comes up.

I didn't need a study by doctors to tell me there is a gene. It may not apply to all, but I have had more than a few close friends tell me that they felt "different" from the go and knew very early on.  In most cases their parents knew too.  

I don't think any of us so called "straight" people can have a clue what it feels like or to know what its like to live in a world that is so into labeling & segregating people.
I had hoped for better for my children, still it seems like we go backwards in cycles.
jbouder
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59 posted 03-07-2004 02:53 PM       View Profile for jbouder   Email jbouder   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jbouder

Reading between the lines of Sea's post, I see an important point to consider - genetic predisposition does not necessarily mean normal or desirable.  Brad alluded to the promiscuity problem in some of the male homosexual communities ... this behavior - genetically motivated or not ... is self-destructive, not much unlike alcoholism (in which researches believe genetics play a role).

Labeling is always going to take place - we all use them, mostly because it is easier to categorize the complex if you use labels.  "Homophobe" is a label also, however, and I don't believe it is fair to label someone homophobic if they happen to believe homosexuality is a form of sexual deviancy.

Jim
sea_of_okc
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60 posted 03-07-2004 03:26 PM       View Profile for sea_of_okc   Email sea_of_okc   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for sea_of_okc

Thank you jbouder

JM you misunderstand my point. I am not comparing pedaphilia with homosexuality in the sense of adult or nonadult. Only in the sense that IF genetics determine our sexuality then how can you say the pedaphile is to blame for his actions? Perhaps they also feel "different" growing up. I know serial killers say they always felt different and outcast amongst their peers and I believe there was actually genetic research done trying to find some genetic basis for serial killers. And before you go off I am NOT comparing serial killers to homosexuals, merely illustrating the point that it is ludicrous to try to blame all of human behavior to genetics. I suppose it is human nature to try to absolve ourselves of responsibility of what may be considered undesirable or anti-social types of behavior. I think it is far far more likely that all "deviant" (for lack of a better word) behaviors stem from environmental/emotional/pschological issues than genetics.
And I am not homophobic in the least. I do not judge the worth of a person based solely upon their actions. I do not agree with nor understand their behavior but I accept them as they are and if they have a good heart I have no problem being friends with them. I would think you know me well enough to know I am not a narrow-minded, intolerant or overly judgemental person.
Janet Marie
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61 posted 03-07-2004 04:38 PM       View Profile for Janet Marie   Email Janet Marie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Janet Marie

To try to be clear... I was not calling Steve homophobic. My issue was with his opening statement which I quoted above. He may not have intended it to be...but (to me) it came across as sarcastic and insulting. This thread is about the current gay marriage issue...
that encompasses legal age adults making a personal decision while this opportunity has been given to them. Throwing in the issues, images and stigma of Pedophilia, is not a fair comparison. They are two different entities of their own.

But then life isn't fair is it? Just ask the 8 year old boy down the street who now has to be home schooled because he was daily physically and verbally abused at the school he was attending because his appearance and speaking voice was deemed "too feminine."

Or the 16 year old girl in a local high school who was raped by two 17 year old boys...
she was an outwardly proud lesbian whom they decided needed to know what "real men" were.
I could go on but shouldn't need to...my point is...we need to look hard at how and why we justify our labels and prejudices and the fall out from them and the kind of messages we send to our kids and society overall.  

"Deviant behavior" is something we are ALL quite capable of.

Essorant
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62 posted 03-07-2004 05:00 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

"How can you presume to know whether sex was based on love back in Roman times?"

I'm not trying to cover the whole Roman Empire, Hush    
I just don't think the more predominant Roman mentality or practices were ever generally sexually excessive.  There were excesses for sure; but overall it seems like the Romans believed that one ought to be governed by Reason and never overgoverend by the Appetite.  The fact that their laws were loose about sexuality may indicate there was enough self-government that sexual things didn't grow into such destructive things as they do now.   Often people believe that people of those ages simply were too harsh or vicious to realize there should be laws against such things; and in  that may be true in many degrees.  But sometimes peoples of the past I think had much more reasoned and "inner" laws and government than we may acknowledge, that we lose a lot of today with all the "outer" laws and government.

Local Rebel
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63 posted 03-07-2004 05:14 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Thanks for the link Sea.  I just got done browsing the whole site
http://www.bol.ucla.edu/~kmayeda/HC92/hc92.html

and would say that Kristin Mayeda has assembled an interesting study.  Everyone should read the whole thing -- but, keep in mind she has her own agenda and the material is dated 1999 -- when she was 21.

The subsequent study by Hamer in 95 was in response to Ebers.... but it is not surprising that there is dissention in the ranks.

I'd still like to see more current data.

But not really -- I think it is a mistake to decide what groups we're going to discriminate against based on genetics or otherwise.

There is, it seems to me, clear evidence that all human behaviour has basis in both nature and nurture arguments.

More later -- have to help my son with his derby car.
Brad
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64 posted 03-07-2004 06:20 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

quote:
One more thing, I have seen a number of people mention "love" in this discussion. I do not believe love has any place in a discussion about the legality of gay marriage. Love being unquantifyable cannot be used in any way as a measure of whether or not something is legal/illegal, moral/immoral, appropriate or inappropriate.


Are you kidding? Love may or may not be quantifiable, but it's a pretty good reason to get married.

quote:
For me the whole issue comes down to whether or not being gay is a preference or an inescable genetic predisposition. If it is a preference then I don't think it should receive any more legal attention then say the Yippies preference to smoke weed over drinking alcohol. If we start allowing legal protection for everyone's preferences then nothing would be illegal anymore...


Legal protection? How about legal recognition? To me, it all comes down to the question of love. Can two gay men or women be in love with each other, commit to each other, and should that love be publicly acknowledged or hidden from view?  Marriage, anyway you look at it, is the legal protection and recognition of a preference as you put it.

I see all these genetic arguments and Roman references as exercises in avoiding the issue.

The question has nothing to do with either, the arguments against gay marriage, presented here, are arguments against marriage.  

But reading through this thread, I get the feeling that it's already dead.

  
hush
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65 posted 03-07-2004 06:41 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Okay, Brad.

What do I think marriage is? In my personal opinion, it is a formalized sort of promise by two individuals to remain with each other, as partners, exclusively, for the rest of their lives. Essentially, what is it but a piece of paper, a name change (maybe) and some legalities? Not much... but I think there is an emotional involvement that is important. It's a contract, but more importantly than a legal contract, it's a contract between people in love.

Which is why I'd like to echo Serenity's point about Civil Unions- they are demeaning. Look at two statements.

We're getting married!

We're getting Civil Uninoned! (Or Unionized... I guess you'd just have to say 'we're getting a civil union' which essentially makes it sound more like a purchase than a process to be celebrated.)

And I do think the moral arguments about genetics (they can't help what they do!) and Roman times (the good ole days) are essentially important. It factors into whether poeple think same sex couples should be prevented from having the same type of marriage heterosexuals do.
Brad
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66 posted 03-07-2004 08:02 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

It's funny because when I first read that, I thought you were asking me what marriage is. Glad I reread it!

But I don't see how love and the piece of paper are separate. I see them as mutually reinforcing tools that help you get through the rough spots (and there are always rough spots). Can you love someone forever without getting married? Sure. Do marriages always work? Of course not. But how can you tell two consenting adults (a word that seems to have been forgotten in some of the comments) who proclaim love for each other and who want that piece of paper, a formalized proclamation of that love, that they can't because you don't agree with their lifestyle?

Isn't there a difference between others telling you what to do and recognizing what others want to do?

The genetics issue gets off the subject because we are talking about marriage, not the nature of homosexuality -- I think. Genetics can give us information, but it can't make our decisions for us, nor should we let it. I think it tends to obscure the idea that we're talking about people, not chromosomes.

And can't prisoners marry?

The history lectures are just a way of saying that our views on marriage, on love, on sex are historically contingent. They are. So what? The Romans were no more natural than we are. In this day and age, perhaps not yesterday, perhaps not tomorrow, shouldn't we celebrate monogamy or at least the attempt to be monogamous?

I think we should.  

Ron
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67 posted 03-07-2004 08:19 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Besides if we go down the path of human sexuality being based in genetics

LOL. I sure hope, Steve, you're not suggesting that I only like women because of some deep seated childhood episode? I have a very strong suspicion that many, many years of Jim's behavior modification is unlikely to change my preferences.

Human sexuality is always inextricably linked to genetics. Of course, that doesn't necessarily mean that it's ONLY linked to genetics. My experience, which happens to be fairly broad for a number of reasons, is that the vast majority of homosexual people have absolutely no choice in the matter. They could no more change their preference than could you or I. However, as always seems to happen when you try to shove too many people into the same bucket, a few refuse to fit as comfortably as we'd like. I know one woman, quite well actually, who was not so much attracted to other women as she was attracted to A woman. Robin fell in love with another person's kindness, compassion, and incredible zest for life. She radically changed her own life to be with this person, something men and women have been doing since the dawn of history. She made a choice. The woman she fell in love with, however, never had any such choice.

Homosexuality is a genetic predisposition, heterosexuality is a genetic predisposition, hell, even murder is lodged deeply into our chromosomes. Each of us is a born killer, as is true of any carnivore. Our genes, however, except in very rare instances, do not absolve us of our responsibility for the choices we make. Predisposition is not predestiny. The person who gains ten pounds just by looking at a piece of chocolate isn't bound to a life of obesity, no matter how hard their DNA may push them in that direction. Discovering a "reason" for something, whether that reason is a recessive gene or childhood trauma, isn't going to give the morbidly obese, the pedophile, or anyone else a get-out-of-jail-free card. Understanding, and even forgiveness, isn't the same thing as consent.

Not that a homosexual should ever need our consent. Homosexuality is about as "deviant" as is being born left-handed. Coincidentally, the percentages are even pretty similar. Neither, in and of itself, brings harm to another human being. Both face social roadblocks imposed for no other reason than being different from the majority. Seems to me it's about time the majority got their act together.

And absolutely none of that has anything at all to do with the question of marriage.
Janet Marie
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68 posted 03-07-2004 08:45 PM       View Profile for Janet Marie   Email Janet Marie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Janet Marie

quote:
the vast majority of homosexual people have absolutely no choice in the matter. They could no more change their preference than could you or I.

                     ~*~

Our genes, however, except in very rare instances, do not absolve us of our responsibility for the choices we make.

                     ~*~


Discovering a "reason" for something, whether that reason is a recessive gene or childhood trauma, isn't going to give the morbidly obese, the pedophile, or anyone else a get-out-of-jail-free card.

Understanding, and even forgiveness, isn't the same thing as consent.

Not that a homosexual should ever need our consent. Homosexuality is about as "deviant" as is being born left-handed. Coincidentally, the percentages are even pretty similar. Neither, in and of itself, brings harm to another human being. Both face social roadblocks imposed for no other reason than being different from the majority. Seems to me it's about time the majority got their act together.

            

Alleluia and AMEN!!!  
This left handed moth thanks you for the clarity, the humility and the humanity!!
sea_of_okc
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69 posted 03-07-2004 10:58 PM       View Profile for sea_of_okc   Email sea_of_okc   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for sea_of_okc

RON

quote:
the vast majority of homosexual people have absolutely no choice in the matter. They could no more change their preference than could you or I.


You may be right as far as you or I go but there are people who change their preference in midlife. And what about documented cases of homosexuality being "cured"?

Your story illustrates that it was a choice for the woman you knew, as far as the woman she partnered with how can you say she had no choice without an in depth psychological and environmental profile of her life? Her saying so is entirely too subjective to be admissable as evidence. To convince me human sexual orientation is based in genetics you will have to find some acceptable objective data to back it.

quote:
Homosexuality is a genetic predisposition, heterosexuality is a genetic predisposition, hell, even murder is lodged deeply into our chromosomes. Each of us is a born killer, as is true of any carnivore.


A carnivore being a 'born killer' is a matter of the instinct for survival. If I have to kill to eat in order to survive then kill I will. Heterosexuality is instinctive in all higher lifeforms as nature's way of continuing the species. As I see it sex has two main functions... procreation and pleasure. The institute of marriage was created to sanctify the former, the latter has occured all through history between same gender partners but I know of no instance where it has been legally recognized in a historical society. And for those who would question marriages of people beyond the age to procreate I say that it is still a coupling of the procreative order, namely male/female.
The reason I am so concerned about the genetic issue is because if homosexaulity is indeed physiological in nature then I would be far less likely to object to the changing of marrige laws, if on the other hand it is as I believe a chosen lifestyle or even an emotional or psychological phenomenon then I do not think marriage laws should be changed. The problem is who decides what alternative lifestyles should be recognized and which not? How about polygamy? How about Americans from cultures that marry off daughters in their early teens? Should they be permitted to continue that practice in America? If we are going to recognize one alternative lifestyle we should be prepared to accomodate them all.

quote:
Both face social roadblocks imposed for no other reason than being different from the majority. Seems to me it's about time the majority got their act together.


Isn't that what democracy is, the will of the majority? Put it to a popular vote... I would stand by that. BTW the last nationwide poll I saw was 52% against 40% for and 8% undecided.

BRAD

quote:
In this day and age, perhaps not yesterday, perhaps not tomorrow, shouldn't we celebrate monogamy or at least the attempt to be monogamous?


And again I ask what does marriage have to do with monogamy??? Monogamy is a CHOICE made individually according to the persons ethics, morals or beliefs of what is right and wrong. I am not monogamous because I am married, I am married because I am monogamous. I have to agree with Ess in that monogamy has suffered due to the increased bombardment of our senses with sexual images and overtones. Recognizing gay marriages will have absolutely zero impact on the percentage of monogamous people. A gay person whose choice is monogamy will be monogamous whether or not society recognizes their relationship.

quote:
To me, it all comes down to the question of love


Very true when you take it on an individual basis but we are talking about legal recognition here and no argument as subjective as love should be taken into account in my opinion. I know my definition of what love is has changed substantially over the last 20 years. And I think we all know many couplings (of any disposition) are based on things other than love...
Essorant
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70 posted 03-08-2004 01:05 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

"And I think we all know many couplings (of any disposition) are based on things other than love..."

Sea,
I agree with this point.
But don't you think hetrosexuals still get treated quite unquestionably like true lovers when they wish to get married, notwithstanding their sexual issues and deviancies?  
How is it right to treat them for sure like true lovers and then decide to go to a sexual standpoint and bring up sexual issues to question homosexuals' right to marriage?  
Ron
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71 posted 03-08-2004 02:34 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Your story illustrates that it was a choice for the woman you knew, as far as the woman she partnered with how can you say she had no choice without an in depth psychological and environmental profile of her life?

You might be surprised just how in-depth I know both women, Steve. But, that's not the point. The point is that one made a choice, one had the choice made for her, and neither is any less than the other. Both are happy and no one is getting hurt.

quote:
If we are going to recognize one alternative lifestyle we should be prepared to accomodate them all.

That was the point I made way back on page one of the first thread, Steve. If we are going to recognize a union between two homosexuals, what arguments are we going to muster to avoid marriage between brother and sister? The trouble is, we're already on that road and have been for a very long time. A thousand years ago marriage between social classes was forbidden. Two hundred years ago marriage between faiths was forbidden. As little as just fifty years ago, marriage between races was forbidden. We've already traveled a few good miles on that road because, little by little, the majority have come to realize they cannot make choices for the minority.

Put another way, why shouldn't we accommodate all lifestyles that bring happiness without harm?

quote:
Isn't that what democracy is, the will of the majority? Put it to a popular vote... I would stand by that. BTW the last nationwide poll I saw was 52% against 40% for and 8% undecided

That is absolutely NOT what democracy is (or, more correctly, that is not what a republic is). Had you put it to a popular vote in the Sixties, your black neighbors would still be sitting at the back of the bus. There's a very good reason why it takes twelve people to convict and only one to set a man free. Minority Rights supersede Majority Rule. Always.

quote:
And again I ask what does marriage have to do with monogamy???

I agree completely, Steve. But I would go further yet, and ask what does marriage have to do with sex?

Marriage without sex is all too common. Sex without marriage is even more common. One is neither a prerequisite of the other, nor the cause of the effect. Marriage isn't even always about love, certainly not in the romantic, sweep-me-off-my-feet notions of the young and nave. Marriage is about commitment. It's a public declaration of private intent. And the flip side to that is it "should be" a public acceptance of private intent.

The 2,000 benefits available through marriage fall under two different umbrellas.

The vast majority of those benefits are simply a recognition of  personal commitment and the responsibilities it entails. When a man is unable to make his own medical decisions, his wife is able to legally make them for him. That's not just a right he gave her when he married her, that's a responsibility she accepted when she married him. The right and the responsibility are joined, indeed are inseparable, and a society that recognizes one without the other is only fooling itself. When two people agree to care for each other, in sickness and in health, our laws MUST give them the tools necessary to do so.

Some few of the benefits accrued to marriage are not necessarily a reflection of responsibility. Husband and wife get a special tax status for the same reason charitable contributions are deductible and companies get consideration for employing minorities. These aren't rights, but are rewards designed to encourage specific behaviors. This is where the majority, in the person of our representatives, gets to throw its weight around a bit. They can essentially reward anyone they like, for whatever they like. (Though in my opinion, government incentives become exceedingly dangerous when applied at any level that affects procreation. Rewarding or not rewarding people for having babies can, in a few short generations, change the face of a society. But I guess that's a different thread? )

A couple of centuries ago, a small group of men declared their belief that all people are endowed with certain inalienable rights. I don't know, but I just have to trust that the ability to take care of each other has to be one of the most basic ones.


hush
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72 posted 03-08-2004 12:32 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Sea-

'The reason I am so concerned about the genetic issue is because if homosexaulity is indeed physiological in nature then I would be far less likely to object to the changing of marrige laws, if on the other hand it is as I believe a chosen lifestyle or even an emotional or psychological phenomenon then I do not think marriage laws should be changed.'

!!??

Huh?

Why?

That makes absolutely no sense. The origination of the behavior doesn't change what the behavior is. If there is genetic evidence that there is a rapist gene, should we change rape laws?

I think I see what you're getting at and quite frankly, I think it's a terrible point of view. If they can help it... if they can choose not to be gay, well, then, let's put some pressure on and see if a little old-fashioned discrimination can't get them to work on changing it. But if they're born with it (much like one is born with a congenital disease) then they can't help it. They can't 'fix' what's 'wrong' with them, so we may as well allow them to be happy.

I think Ron said it best:

'why shouldn't we accommodate all lifestyles that bring happiness without harm?'

Tell me... who are gay people hurting? Give me one good reason that their rights should be continually witheld.

Also:

'The problem is who decides what alternative lifestyles should be recognized and which not?'

I had a reply in the first thread:

'I don't have time to read all the replies right now, but I have to address the points Ron makes.

Polygamy is, in my opinion, the simpler one. As long as the person's first spouse is aware of and okay with it- why not? Who am I, or anyone else, to deny the power of group love, or the ability of one man/woman to have multiple wives/husbands/both?

(Although, I guess an interesting question to that would be- how many spouses should insurance pay for as 'family?' It'd get mighty expensive eventually...)

The incest one is really interesting. My boyfriend and I were discussing it the other day. He brought up the issue of possible heightening the risk of congenital birth defects. I do not know, statistically and realistically, how much more common, if at all, it is for close blood relatives having children together to have children with defects or diseases... but if it is a significant number, why not a) screen them for potential complications and --possibly-- b) have them agree to some form of sterilization so as not to have children with defects before the marriage takes place?

I'm not entirely in agreeance with b up there, but it is a possibility... granted, they might just have kids without being married if they really want them together... but it almost seems like education via testing, etc., might lead to more ocmpliance as far as close blood relatives not having kids goes.

I think that there are possibilities for everything... and I also don't believe I am one to judge the sexual beliefs and actions of others, so long as no one is harmed. I don't think what I just said will go over so well, but then again, I don't think America is ready for the things I suggested. Are they too pluralistic, to morally slack? Maybe.

But I do think ending discrimination against gay couples is a huge step in the right direction for America.'
Ron
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73 posted 03-08-2004 01:39 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Amy, I think your earlier response, repeated here, only highlights how truly complex the issues can quickly become.

Polygamy, for example, is not as simple as you might wish. You posited, "As long as the person's first spouse is aware of and okay with it - why not?" Couldn't that same question be asked about battering? At what point should we protect people on the wrong end of a power struggle from their own bad decisions? Now throw in some questions about the expense to society, some of which you already briefly mentioned. Society will try (if not always very well) to feed a family comprised of one man, one wife, and five kids. What if that man has three wives and fifteen kids? We've avoided legislating procreation so far, avoided tying the right to have children with the ability to support them, only because one guy can do limited damage and our politicians are willing to let everyone else absorb the costs of that damage. How much damage, though, will become too much damage to absorb? Every single problem we must address in a one-on-one marriage become geometrically larger when we introduce the possibility of polygamy.

Worse, if our answer to incestuous marriage is to control the right to breed, we set an incredibly dangerous precedent. Inbreeding doesn't work because recessive genes are too often shared by close family members, and two sets of recessive genes are no longer recessive. All the bad things bubble to the surface. Whether we screen them, sterilize them, or abort the results, we suddenly find ourselves with legal standards as to just how imperfect we will allow a child to be. Should adults with IQ's under 70 be allowed to have children together? How about people with IQ's under 100? Sickle cell anemia? Where is the line drawn, and even more importantly, who do we trust so much we would give them the power to draw that line?

Procreation is complicated stuff.

Marriage, on the other hand, and the legal rights necessary to enable one person to adequately care for the welfare of another, should have nothing at all to do with procreating. They are, and should remain, separate issues.


jbouder
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since 09-18-99
Posts 2641
Whole Sort Of Genl Mish Mash


74 posted 03-08-2004 02:23 PM       View Profile for jbouder   Email jbouder   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jbouder

Well, science cannot tell us whether the behavior (unlike my puns) is good or baaaaad ... just that the brains are different.

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=585&ncid=585&e=2&u=/nm/20040308/sc_nm/science_sheep_dc

Just thought I'd lighten things up.

Jim
 
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