Debate and Discussion

Gay Rights Protest Saturday
megan_rose at 6:15PM, Nov. 12, 2008
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Proposition 8's passing was the best thing that ever happened to gay rights.

Here me out on this.

Before the election, sure there was a lot of heated debate back and forth about its passing. Plenty of Yes and No ads. But I think we all felt safe and comfy in our assumption that California of all places would be for gay marriage. I mean, it's Cali-freakin'-fornia! They have San Fransisco, and many, many antiques stores.

And then, by this narrow margin, we lost. And unlike the gay marriage bans in the dozens of other states that passed such laws before, California was the only one who had something to lose. Losing rights you never had is one thing. Losing rights you did have is another thing entirely.

So now, people are angry.

People are beyond angry.

My gay and lesbian groups that I talk with have switched their conversations from who's dating who to social justice. People are finally saying, "I don't want my rights on your schedule. I want them on mine. And I want them now.“

Straight people have been coming out of the woodwork in droves to support us, more than they ever have before. People are saying ”Sure, the law might not directly affect me. But what about my gay friend/aunt/cousin/son/daughter/coworker? Just because I can get married and have my rights doesn't mean I can't be part of this fight.“

While we as a community still must band together tighter, we are tighter than ever before. We are closer than ever before. I feel confident that I will be able to get married in my lifetime. And I won't have to be Del Martin's age.

I am excited to be part of history. I am excited to be alive to see the first black president, and to see people band together for justice. To see people stand up to the majority and say ”This country was not founded on your beliefs. It was not founded on mine. It was founded on the ideals of liberty and justice for all!"

I know that not all of you are from the US. I know that many of you are in other countries fighting your own version of the same fight. But for those of you in the US, I want to show you this:


This Saturday, in EVERY state, people are getting together at the same time to protest the unfair treatment of LGBT people. It's a weekend. Most of you don't have work or school.
I will be at the Grand Rapids, MI location.

I urge you, whether you're gay or straight (or anything in between), cis- or transgendered, young or old, find the nearest protest location and show your support.

Together, we can make change.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:59PM
SpANG at 8:21PM, Nov. 12, 2008
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On behalf of straight people, I'm so sorry Megan Rose. If this passes, and is then upheld, it sets an extremely dangerous precedent. This goes WAY beyond just gay people. This is a constitutional amendment that will TAKE AWAY rights from a group of people. This is unheard of.

You are right though. This issue has now been given the media attention it deserves, and things should go better in the future.

The closest gathering to me is Allentown, PA. I'll try. If the vote comes to my state, I'll vote NO with fierceness. And I've been in lots of discussions about this. Changed some minds as well.
“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:53PM
ozoneocean at 8:40PM, Nov. 12, 2008
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SpANG
The closest gathering to me is Allentown, PA.
Woo! Like in that great Billy Joel song! :)

Well at lest this issue has gotten as far as it did in the U.S. I have no idea where we are in terms of gay marriage rights in Australia.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
honey bucket at 10:03PM, Nov. 12, 2008
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I'm gonna try to repr'sent in my neck of the woods. I was disapppointed with my state doing the same (AZ)… :/
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:50PM
DAJB at 12:04AM, Nov. 13, 2008
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The US never ceases to amaze me. How a country can be at once as liberal and tolerant as it is and, at the same time, as conservative and reactionary as it so often shows it can be, is a mystery. As a nation, it seems to have a serious split personality.

Gay marriages were recognised here in the UK (technically termed “civil partnerships” ) a few years ago. Eyebrows were certainly raised in some quarters at the time but, by and large, no-one made a big deal about it and I can't imagine anyone would now consider campaigning to have that right withdrawn. One of my friends recently admitted to being gay and married his partner of nearly ten years. The guests included both straight friends like me, gay friends and even his 70+ year-old mother from the ultra-conservative (former) East Germany. Everyone there was as pleased for them as they would have been for any straight couple.

Good luck with the protest. I shan't be crossing the Atlantic to join you guys but you have my moral support!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:03PM
lothar at 3:43AM, Nov. 13, 2008
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we should start pushing for a constitutional amendment that forbids christian marriage .
what's the difference ? they're the ones that caused this . let them feel how it is to be marginalized !!!
it's telling one group of people that the way they live is wrong .and that they don't deserve what others take for granted.
gender , race , age , religion and whatever else that divides should be abolished along with national borders ! then the old question “ASL” would be irrelevant . 100 years in the future this idea is .

but for now i'm just angry !
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
Ronson at 4:18AM, Nov. 13, 2008
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While I support the protests and the activism, I have always been of the mind that the gay marriage issue is a matter of when and not if. That doesn't help the people who wish to marry now, of course, and without activism it won't happen. But it's inevitable.

The “tyranny of the majority” is not the place where this will be decided. The California Supreme Court will almost certainly throw out this referendum on strict Constitutional grounds. If they don't, the Federal Supreme Court will.

Lothar has the right idea, but the wrong approach. Since gay marriage is considered by its opponents to contradict the Bible, gay marriage activists should try to make divorce illegal because that is also not allowed in the Bible.

The thing that gets me about these types of things is all the money that goes into advertising these positions. What an incredible waste for something that will ultimately be recognized as a civil right anyway.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
StaceyMontgomery at 5:23AM, Nov. 13, 2008
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I think a lot of people just became too confident, and as far as i can tell, the other side really out organized us on Prop 8, and most especially, they out-spent us.

Here's my personal anecdote: I live in MA and used to do a lot of gay/trans activism. So I'm on lots of e-mail lists. Over the last year, I cannot recall getting 1 email asking me to give money for Prop 8. But in the last few days, I've gotten dozens of emails telling me to get out and protest Prop 8.

The truth is, the kind of response we're seeing now is the kind of response we needed a few weeks ago.

I think our community has gotten a bit complacent - some things started to seem inevitable, unstoppable.

But nothing is inevitable, except that no one ever gives you freedom. You have to take it.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
lothar at 5:06AM, Nov. 14, 2008
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Ronson
Lothar has the right idea, but the wrong approach. Since gay marriage is considered by its opponents to contradict the Bible, gay marriage activists should try to make divorce illegal because that is also not allowed in the Bible.

yea , that's a good idea too, but i for one an tired of seeing non-religionists have to use the bible to reason with holy crusaders . these anti-gay religionists should learn what it's like for a large part of society to completly blow off their ideas and feelings as unimportant and not worthy of respect or equal rights.
i don't think the bible has any place in the laws of the USA ! no more so than any other religious book. all we are seeing now is the fundamentalists trying to achieve cultural hegemony . history will look back at this proposition and compare it to segregation or antisemitism . or at least that's how i hope histroy will see it . we can always go backwards , it seems to be the default setting for humanity

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
Skullbie at 12:31AM, Nov. 15, 2008
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honey bucket
I was disapppointed with my state doing the same (AZ)… :/
Even if ours passed gay marriage would still be illegal from the law passed in 1996-it was more of a ‘protest’ thing to get it declared unconstitutional- california was the state that had something to lose.

*sigh* Switch the word ‘same-sex’ with ‘interracial’ and we've got the same thing going on that was barring blacks from marrying whites- and what minority with deep traditional values backed the ban by an alarming number? Yup, America does not learn from history.


I do Agree with Megan that this was a good thing, a spark to a fuse
. I checked where they'd be holding it in my city, and lo and behold, not even 30 miles away. I'll go :)
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:46PM
bravo1102 at 9:25AM, Nov. 15, 2008
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Naturally the right wing has started off with the insults hurled at Mormons, Christians and anyone else who was for Prop 8 in the Protests. Ho-hum. You want support for your cause you don't go around saying that all the people who oppose you are morons who believe in weird stuff and should convert from their religion and f*** them.

Mormons are the mildest people in the world, try to insult them you look like a cretin. (unless you do it like Southpark Dumb, da-dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb)

By the way, divorce was approved of in the Old Testament, gosh you just sent her home. In the New Testament they wanted it to go away. The empire after it became Christian had a hard time stamping it out as it was normal and accepted in the whole pagan world. (Egypt, Greece, Rome, Hebrews and everywhere in between) It's the Christians who came along and changed it. (Robin Lane Fox Pagans and Christians also histories of the Byzantines from Constantine and of course Gibbon :) )
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
StaceyMontgomery at 4:52PM, Nov. 15, 2008
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Congratulations to everyone who took part in Today's amazing protests around the the World.

My hopes and dreams are all renewed.

last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
lothar at 10:24PM, Nov. 15, 2008
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bravo1102
Naturally the right wing has started off with the insults hurled at Mormons, Christians and anyone else who was for Prop 8 in the Protests. Ho-hum. You want support for your cause you don't go around saying that all the people who oppose you are morons who believe in weird stuff and should convert from their religion and f*** them.

Mormons are the mildest people in the world, try to insult them you look like a cretin. (unless you do it like Southpark Dumb, da-dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb)

WUT ? the right wing is insulting the mormons and the christians ??? i thought that was their base ? now i'm confused .
and i don't see why it's unfair to single out the mormans seeing as they raised money and pushed for this thing far more than other groups .
and the mormons that i have known are far from mild . unless by “mild” you mean secluded and creepy . mormanism is one of the most in you face religions out there . i moved halfway around the world from their capitol and i still get their missionaries atacking me at the train station .
i'm not realy too tollerant of any religions , but as far as mormonism goes it's one of the more idiotic ones , it's racist and very very sexist !! i'm not trying to bash the people but their religion and overall world view has Major problems !! i'm coming from a half mormon family here and i've had many morman friends . i feel sorry for the people in the mormon church . it's a very controlling and regressive institution . very similar to the taliban . the only thing stopping them from being just like the taliban is the US government , and that's why this kind of thing like prop 8 is dangerous .


bravo1102
By the way, divorce was approved of in the Old Testament, gosh you just sent her home. In the New Testament they wanted it to go away. The empire after it became Christian had a hard time stamping it out as it was normal and accepted in the whole pagan world. (Egypt, Greece, Rome, Hebrews and everywhere in between) It's the Christians who came along and changed it. (Robin Lane Fox Pagans and Christians also histories of the Byzantines from Constantine and of course Gibbon :) )

who cares ? the USA is not a theocracy ! entirely irrellevant

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
bravo1102 at 12:06PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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Ronson
Since gay marriage is considered by its opponents to contradict the Bible, gay marriage activists should try to make divorce illegal because that is also not allowed in the Bible.

Therefore: my reply that divorce was allowed in the Bible making Ronson's statement irrelevant. The injunctions against homosexuality most often quoted are from the same Old testament bits that condone divorce.

Also Lothar you misread my post. I was saying that the right wing is using the remarks made by the protestors against them. You see the tolerant protesters were the ones calling blacks the “n” word because Black Baptist churches supported Prop 8. They hurled insulting remarks at the Mormons and all Christians. You collect enough sound bytes like that in this day and age and the right wing twists them and makes the protesters look like the intolerant ones who are out to destroy Mom, Dad and apple pie.

Who is blinding themselves with hate and who is defending the values they hold dear?

It took a long time for interracial marriage to be accepted after 3 centuries of horrific discrimination. Homosexuality has been anathema since the 4th Century. Marriage was never part of the gay culture before. It's a brand new idea. Look how long it has taken to get Women's Rights (almost as long as ending racial discrimination) Marriage is Man + woman = kids and secure property ownership.

Introducing an entirely new set of conditions for something that ingrained in world wide culture for 4000 years over night? Redefine the term and all the rights and priviledges of marriage and let the blind traditionalists keep their word “marriage” pure. Make civil law grants the rights and responsiblities of marriage for all unions between two humans of proper age and familial relationship. Let “marriage” apply to religiously sanctified unions. Church and state seperate as it was in that watershed of secularization of a religious culture: the French Revolution (Simon Schama's Citizens easily the best work on it)

Trying to strong arm gay marriage into our culture by calling the other side a bunch of religious bigots will not work. If I recall correctly that was not how they overturned misengenation legislation or integrated lunch counters etc. Malcolm X or the Black Panthers didn't end seperate but equal. (Before the Mayflower is a good book to start with)

Founder, president and only member “Secular Atheists against Religious Goofballs Everywhere” (SARGE)
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Ochitsukanai at 12:59PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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bravo1102
Introducing an entirely new set of conditions for something that ingrained in world wide culture for 4000 years over night? Redefine the term and all the rights and priviledges of marriage and let the blind traditionalists keep their word “marriage” pure. Make civil law grants the rights and responsiblities of marriage for all unions between two humans of proper age and familial relationship. Let “marriage” apply to religiously sanctified unions. Church and state seperate as it was in that watershed of secularization of a religious culture: the French Revolution (Simon Schama's Citizens easily the best work on it)

This argument presupposes that marriage is necessarily religiously based, or at least that the word should be made to hold religious connotations. Yet, atheists can get married in the same fashion. It is strange to state thereafter that gay people can't get married because the word “marriage” belongs (or should belong) to Christian ideologues…sounds like arbitrary redefinition of terms.

This is a serious point, because words are influential! By semantically differentiating between “marriage” and “civil union,” we CREATE difference even if it does not exist prior to that. If one group has “marriage” and one has “civil union,” it means that there is difference enough to warrant different terms. Unacceptable.

Such meaningless distinctions so easily become integrated in cultural discussion. I despise the terminology that creates such an artificial difference…

Always, I wanna be with mew, and make believe with mew
and live in harmony harmony oh nyan
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:20PM
bravo1102 at 1:31PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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Ochitsukanai
This argument presupposes that marriage is necessarily religiously based, or at least that the word should be made to hold religious connotations. Yet, atheists can get married in the same fashion. It is strange to state thereafter that gay people can't get married because the word “marriage” belongs (or should belong) to Christian ideologues…sounds like arbitrary redefinition of terms.

This is a serious point, because words are influential! By semantically differentiating between “marriage” and “civil union,” we CREATE difference even if it does not exist prior to that. If one group has “marriage” and one has “civil union,” it means that there is difference enough to warrant different terms. Unacceptable.

Such meaningless distinctions so easily become integrated in cultural discussion. I despise the terminology that creates such an artificial difference…

Those who oppose gay marraige are the ones who define “marriage” as religiously based on a Judeo-Christian model. Argue with them and they don't give an inch because they are quoting dogma which is NOT open to any kind of debate because it's what GOD said.

That's why you have to take it out of that sphere by using the term civil union and go around them and get your desire first. Then once that is in place you can call it marriage all you want and they cannot take away what has already been granted under a different name.

Victory by faking out your opponent rather than being dogmatic about semantics and losing.

Read Sun Tzu.

Your way you've already given the field to your opponent by trying to change the unchangeable: their terms and their definitions. Use a term they accept as non-threatening where they are willing to accept compromise. Once they have asceded to what you want, you will be free to redefine their terms because you alredy have what you want. Just what is the goal here? What is more important? Getting the same rights and priviledges as heterosexual marriage or getting a word? They won't give you the word because it flies in the face of what they hold dearest. THEIR FAITH Logic does not and can not defeat faith.

I'd rather have the right to do something than not to have the right to do something but be able to call the right I don't have by a specific term.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
Ochitsukanai at 2:23PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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bravo1102
Those who oppose gay marraige are the ones who define “marriage” as religiously based on a Judeo-Christian model. Argue with them and they don't give an inch because they are quoting dogma which is NOT open to any kind of debate because it's what GOD said.

Their position on marriage in particular is largely societal rather than Scriptural, as Scripture is undetailed regarding ceremonies and Christianity was not the sole source of marriages even when it was written. The position is fragile. Furthermore, while Scripture never changes, society does.

bravo1102
That's why you have to take it out of that sphere by using the term civil union and go around them and get your desire first. Then once that is in place you can call it marriage all you want and they cannot take away what has already been granted under a different name.

Victory by faking out your opponent rather than being dogmatic about semantics and losing.

Once you've relented, once you allow someone ELSE to define terms, it's a loss. As it is said, he who defines the terms wins the argument. And marriage, already a social term as demonstrated by the fact that the nonreligious can marry, should not be given to the ideologues. It's quite the opposite of your “church and state separation” policy to do so, as you are basically handing the church a word that belongs to the state…

bravo1102
Your way you've already given the field to your opponent by trying to change the unchangeable: their terms and their definitions. Use a term they accept as non-threatening where they are willing to accept compromise. Once they have asceded to what you want, you will be free to redefine their terms because you alredy have what you want. Just what is the goal here? What is more important? Getting the same rights and priviledges as heterosexual marriage or getting a word? They won't give you the word because it flies in the face of what they hold dearest. THEIR FAITH Logic does not and can not defeat faith.

Your argument appears to rely on several premises: Christians do not find “civil union” threatening (false), one can redefine terms freely once one has the same rights as everyone else (why?), and that Christianity owns marriage (false).

Their position is rhetorically frail, hinging solely upon religious bias that ultimately has no place in legislation. What they do about this is appropriate words for themselves - this redefinition of terms is reprehensible, not to be allowed. You act as though words are unimportant - words are what we use to express our ideas. They crucially shape our thoughts on subjects. And they can create artificial distinction where no real distinction should exist.

Furthermore, the people you refer to find any gay union threatening. Before there was even this issue, the fact of sodomy repulsed them so that they had to create laws prohibiting it. There is manifestly no way of pleasing them, semantic appeasement policy or no.

bravo1102
I'd rather have the right to do something than not to have the right to do something but be able to call the right I don't have by a specific term.

I'd rather people not be differentiated unnecessarily by arbitrary terms.

Always, I wanna be with mew, and make believe with mew
and live in harmony harmony oh nyan
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:20PM
ozoneocean at 7:24PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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Yeah, I'm with Ochitsukanai (who's name I have to copy and paste because it's so weird…)

I used to think that appeasement was the best way with things like this, but where do you stop? The religious people that have an issue with this shouldn't be appeased, they should be forced to accept the change and come up to date with the needs of their changing society-> not drag us slowly back, bit by bit into their primitive theocratic ways. We know that's worse than what THEY fear because we've seen the sad result of societies where theocratic ideals have gained primacy in recent history: Puritan Britain, Iran, Taliban in Afghanistan.

The restraints on social freedoms just get stricter and stricter; if you allow them any sort of a foothold, they just use it to go another step further, and onwards. A win with the Gay marriage ban, next abortion is illegal for all no matter what, then creationism has to be taught in schools, and then you end up with men all having short hair and women wearing dresses and having long hair only and homosexuality outlawed on pain of death. :)

Extreme, but that's the way it goes.

In the end probably the only people who should have a say on whether gay marriage should be allowed are gay people themselves.

———————-
Anyway, in Australia, we're stuck now with an ostensibly left wing government, that is really rather worryingly conservative in some of its views on social freedoms.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
DAJB at 11:53PM, Nov. 16, 2008
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ozoneocean
we've seen the sad result of societies where theocratic ideals have gained primacy in recent history: Puritan Britain
Recent?!

Cromwell would be turning in his grave. You know … if Charles II had actually left him in it, so he could turn!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:03PM
ozoneocean at 1:01AM, Nov. 17, 2008
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It's recent in terms of history. ;)
At least the way I look at it.

Besides, I wasn't listing every sort of theocratic regime, just those that grained power not too long ago over more secular ones: clamping down on social freedoms due to popular conservative uprisings.
Heh, think of it that way; the popular British Republican hero Cromwell was way more right wing than the monarchy he displaced lol!
Always the way with historical heroes… Witness the silly idolisation of Guy Fawkes for the wrong reasons. -_-


 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:32PM
StaceyMontgomery at 9:09AM, Nov. 17, 2008
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It's amazing the things we have changed over the generations. The way we look at women, children, and race, it's really quite amazing. If you think about the way child sexual abuse/prostitution was viewed around much of the world for the last 4000 years, it's amazing to see what we've accomplished, and frightening to think of what was “normal” so recently!

And of course, we've made technological changes - air travel! The internet! modern medicine! All of these things dramatically changed the way people live their lives and see the world.

And at every point, there were conservative voices to say - don't do this, things should not change, we should stick to what we know. You can't just change the meaning of words like “citizen” (to include women) or “marriage” (to make it a meeting of legal equals) or “rape” or…

I could go on and on. I'll bet everyone could list a million things. Imagine trying to explain conservationism to an old nantucket Whaler! And yet, the Whales are almost gone - it would have been better if we could have explained it to them.

In ancient times, conservative egyptian priests warned that writing things down would ruin our memories and change the way we saw the world. We ignored their advice - but we wrote down their words. Thank goodness, hm?

Thank goodness we didn't listen to the people who told us that we were wrong. Thank goodness, we didn't let conservatives hang on to the past. Thank goodness mankind has chosen, again and again, to be inventive, progressive, and moving forward. Thank goodness I do not have to live in a cave.


last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
isukun at 12:12PM, Nov. 17, 2008
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Introducing an entirely new set of conditions for something that ingrained in world wide culture for 4000 years over night?

I wouldn't exactly say ingrained in “world-wide” culture. There are actually quite a few cultures who have in the past allowed same-sex marriage. China, Africa, the Native Americans, even Greece and Rome. I don't really think it's much of a coincidence that all of those cultures began to frown on or even outlaw same-sex marriage around the same time Christianity was introduced to them.

Victory by faking out your opponent rather than being dogmatic about semantics and losing.

Read Sun Tzu.

Except that most of the people who oppose gay marriage also oppose civil unions. Giving something a different label doesn't always work. It isn't the financial institution that the Christians disagree with, it is the lifestyle and the possibility of gays raising children. Allowing civil unions is like the government approving of homosexuality and allowing homosexuals to influence their children. You can change the name all you want, but the “sanctity of marriage” argument is just a cover to hide Christian America's real fears.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
bravo1102 at 4:05PM, Nov. 17, 2008
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Someone
I wouldn't exactly say ingrained in “world-wide” culture. There are actually quite a few cultures who have in the past allowed same-sex marriage. China, Africa, the Native Americans, even Greece and Rome. I don't really think it's much of a coincidence that all of those cultures began to frown on or even outlaw same-sex marriage around the same time Christianity was introduced to them.

Sex in History and Pagans and Christians among other works say you're in error as does a survey of Taboo among various native cultures etc, etc etc. I've been fooling aorund with sex the history of marriage ever since this whole subject came up. Marriage has always been as I defined it: Man + woman = legimate offspring and secure property rights.

You see what I was talking about is how you go into negotiations how to get what you want without them realizing that they've given it to you. Always surrender semantics because words can mean whatever you want them to. Win the objective then you redefine the terms. That is what wins at the bargining table. Get what you want without them realizing they gave it to you. And surprisingly enough though the die-hard fundemantalist fanatics oppose civil union the majority will accept it. You want their support not the fanatics because as I've said a million times you can't change the mind of someone (the fanatics) that wedded to faith and dogma. You will win the majority support with civil union. Try to co-opt the word marriage and the fanatics will rally as they did in California and we've lost. Pure and Simple.

Sun Tzu would be spinning in his grave, but instead he is laughing. My position was laid out in secular humanist circles a few years ago and the same firestorm descended upon the guy who suggested it. lol!

Remind me to never bring any of you to an arbitration hearing. ;)

Guess I'm too pragmatic to go into this line of work. I'd rather go with Giap than Ho.

last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
Ochitsukanai at 5:27PM, Nov. 17, 2008
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bravo1102
Sex in History and Pagans and Christians among other works say you're in error as does a survey of Taboo among various native cultures etc, etc etc. I've been fooling aorund with sex the history of marriage ever since this whole subject came up. Marriage has always been as I defined it: Man + woman = legimate offspring and secure property rights.

You simplify it to gender here, but consider it culturally. Previously, when a woman married a man, all her property was his. There were dowries. Divorce was difficult to attain. Previously, interracial marriages were taboo. These things are important distinctions from marriage as we commonly know it today. And yet here, just here, it's best to balk and find a different route because “it's always been as you defined it?” Yet, marriage has constantly changed - it seems to me that only narrow definitions can keep it the same.

bravo1102
You see what I was talking about is how you go into negotiations how to get what you want without them realizing that they've given it to you. Always surrender semantics because words can mean whatever you want them to. Win the objective then you redefine the terms. That is what wins at the bargining table. Get what you want without them realizing they gave it to you. And surprisingly enough though the die-hard fundemantalist fanatics oppose civil union the majority will accept it. You want their support not the fanatics because as I've said a million times you can't change the mind of someone (the fanatics) that wedded to faith and dogma. You will win the majority support with civil union. Try to co-opt the word marriage and the fanatics will rally as they did in California and we've lost. Pure and Simple.

Earlier you mentioned that such people never retreat from anything, they never back down - appeasement seems a peculiar answer in such a case.

And if the struggle for ‘civil union’ is what ingrains itself, it's not feasible to go about chirping “Marriage, you mean! Marriage!” and alter that. Really, you can't arbitrarily decide what words mean - you don't provide the wealth of ever-changing historical connotations and contexts for them that influences that. What I'm saying is, it's an oversimplification of linguistics.

Always, I wanna be with mew, and make believe with mew
and live in harmony harmony oh nyan
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:20PM
StaceyMontgomery at 5:28PM, Nov. 17, 2008
(offline)
posts: 520
joined: 4-7-2007
bravo1102
Sex in History and Pagans and Christians among other works say you're in error as does a survey of Taboo among various native cultures etc, etc etc. I've been fooling aorund with sex the history of marriage ever since this whole subject came up. Marriage has always been as I defined it: Man + woman = legimate offspring and secure property rights.

You see what I was talking about is how you go into negotiations how to get what you want without them realizing that they've given it to you. Always surrender semantics because words can mean whatever you want them to. Win the objective then you redefine the terms. That is what wins at the bargining table. Get what you want without them realizing they gave it to you. And surprisingly enough though the die-hard fundemantalist fanatics oppose civil union the majority will accept it. You want their support not the fanatics because as I've said a million times you can't change the mind of someone (the fanatics) that wedded to faith and dogma. You will win the majority support with civil union. Try to co-opt the word marriage and the fanatics will rally as they did in California and we've lost. Pure and Simple.

Sun Tzu would be spinning in his grave, but instead he is laughing. My position was laid out in secular humanist circles a few years ago and the same firestorm descended upon the guy who suggested it. lol!

Remind me to never bring any of you to an arbitration hearing. ;)

Guess I'm too pragmatic to go into this line of work. I'd rather go with Giap than Ho.

Isn't it odd that you work so hard to present yourself as the practical, reasonable person in the room - but you also refer to having a few people on the internet disagree with you as “a firestorm.” A wise person once said that there is more to being smart than just telling everyone how smart you are.

I am afraid i disagree with you on several important points:

1) You seem to present Civil Unions as being the same thing as a marriage except for the name. I am no lawyer, but it looks to me as if Civil Unions are NOT the same as a Marriage legally. They seem to rate a distant second. They are also very different from marriage socially. Civil Unions are probably worth fighting for. But let's not pretend that they are the same as marriage.

2) You seem to feel that we could get Civil Unions with little trouble - everyone's in favor of them! Alas, this does not seem to be true either, as most gay people do not have access to Civil Unions. Where is this great capitulation that you describe?

And consider this: The only reason that some people have given in on Civil Unions recently is because we are pushing so hard for marriage and sometimes winning. That is, it is only our victories that are giving us weight at the bargaining table.

You can always tell when you are starting to win. That's when everyone tells you that it is “time to be more reasonable.”


People used to say that we were weak and sick, They put us in institutions and zapped us with electricity and beat the crap out of us and killed us in dark alleys. They beat us down. I could tell you stories.

Now they say we are “moving too fast' and ”not being reasonable“ and they don't seem to think we are weak anymore. I'd say things are moving in the right direction. As Ronald Reagan said ”It's nice to be liked, but it's more important to be respected."


last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
megan_rose at 6:01PM, Nov. 17, 2008
(online)
posts: 199
joined: 3-7-2007
What it really comes down to is, the United States does not have state-mandated religion. It is, in fact, one of the things the founders wanted to avoid. And all of the arguments against gay marriage are based in religious reasons.

Sure, many of our laws are based on Judeo-Christian teachings. But I'm pretty sure “don't murder people” would have made it into the law books without the ten Commandments.

There are many people who are non-religious in this country, and there are actually many religions that are tolerant of gay relationships. To make gay marriage illegal is to restrict the religious freedom of those people. Allowing gay marriage in no way affects those religions that don't agree with it. They will not be forced to marry gay couples within their own church. But for those churches that would love to see loving couples make a commitment to one another before God, they cannot.

We aren't looking for religious recognition. We are looking for all of the legal benefits that come with marriage. We are looking for equal treatment under the law, not under the cross.

If I die and come to stand before my creator, and He tells me, “You know what? You really were wrong, and being gay is a sin,” then I will deal with it. But no one else will. It is between me and God, not me and god and Joe the Pastor.


(Boy, my angry Janet icon sure goes well my a lot of my posts lately!)
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:59PM
isukun at 8:45PM, Nov. 17, 2008
(online)
posts: 2,481
joined: 9-28-2006
Sex in History and Pagans and Christians among other works say you're in error

You may want to check a different book, then. When you go through a marriage ceremony and refer to the union with the same terms you refer to a union between man and woman, then it is recognized as a marriage, even more so when it is recognized legally and even practiced by government leaders.

Marriage has always been as I defined it: Man + woman = legimate offspring and secure property rights.

Not really. Even with straight marriage legitimate offspring were not always tied to the marital act. Often the first born would be designated the legitimate heir, whether they were conceived of the man's wife or not. In some cultures, legitimate heirs were chosen based on trade, rather than birth. Many cultures also did not associate property rights with marriage. When a spouse died, their possessions were returned to their family, not held by the spouse. Hell, in some cases, children were, too.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
draconia11 at 6:59AM, Jan. 8, 2009
(offline)
posts: 55
joined: 10-10-2008
I think they should let people marry who they wan't. The only real argument against Prop 8 is that the definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. Somehow this just seems wrong.
Didn't the definition of a person used to not include african americans? Definitions can change, and people who are against Prop 8 are just religious nuts who are stuck in the past.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:14PM

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