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YouSpeak: Same-Sex Marriage

Supreme Court takes up the issue as the country watches

128

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases that could have a dramatic impact on the future of same-sex marriage. In one, the court is asked to consider whether California’s voter-approved ban on gay marriage violates the U.S. Constitution. In the other, the court will decide on a challenge to the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which blocks same-sex married couples from receiving the same federal marriage benefits as heterosexual married couples.

The Supreme Court takes up the issue as support for same-sex marriage is at an all-time high. A Washington Post–ABC News poll conducted last month reported that 58 percent of Americans believe gay and lesbian couples should be able to wed legally. And the percentage is even higher (81 percent) among young adults, ages 18 to 29. Only 36 percent of those polled say same-sex marriage should be illegal.

This week’s “YouSpeak” asks: “Should same-sex marriage be legalized nationally?”

YouSpeak” typically appears each Monday.

If you have a suggestion for a question you’d like us to ask, post in the Comments section below.

Sean Clauson can be reached at sclauson@bu.edu.

128 Comments

128 Comments on YouSpeak: Same-Sex Marriage

  • SigChi on 04.01.2013 at 7:02 am

    The bible says marriage is between a man and a woman. I think we should follow it.

    • The philosophy of language on 04.01.2013 at 9:01 am

      I have no problem with gay people enjoying the benefits of a partnership under the law but the word marriage has long standing roots in religion too and ignoring this fact is an insult to every religion in the world.

      Just like every other word in this sentence marriage is a term with a defined meaning that has historically been associated with the union formed between a man and a woman. I see no reason to change that meaning.

      Civil unions like corporations can serve to allow civil “partners” just like business partners certain legal rights and protections under the law without the need to rewrite the dictionary and insult those of us with strong held religious beliefs.

      • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 9:19 am

        Fine. Then abolish marriage as a civil contract. Let people get married by churches, and let the rights currently relegated to marriage be conferrable by civil contract between any number of people of any combination of sex/gender.

        The state shouldn’t be involved in regulating family structures at all.

        • John on 04.01.2013 at 10:02 am

          Exactly this. Marriage is a religious institution at its core, not a government one. We need to follow the First Amendment.

          • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 10:40 am

            Agreed. Still, until abolition is on the table, equal treatment under the law needs to be enforced.

        • Evans on 04.01.2013 at 10:49 am

          I couldn’t agree more. The state should not deny people the right to marry, however Churches should not be held accountable for marrying Gay couples, if it goes against their scripture. The same goes for health care. It is appalling that the same politicians who advocate for the separation of Church & State are forcing religious institutions to violate their most sacred laws.

          • Aaron L'Heureux on 04.01.2013 at 10:59 am

            Churches aren’t held accountable for marrying gay couples. You can get married in many ways that have nothing to do with the church. Allowing gay couples to marry by lawyer, city official, ship captain, anyone (in some states), etc has nothing to do with forcing any religious institutions to do anything.

            This was a huge issue of misinformation in the recent Maine elections where the prevailing belief of some was that if the law passed and marriage became legal that all churches would have to marry all people. Lots of campaign money was spent explaining that’s not the case.

          • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 11:51 am

            Who would want to get married at a church that condemns them? People will find churches that are willing marry them, whether or not same sex marriage is legal, it’s just a question of whether they get legal equality. I would just rather this equality come from abolition, not a half-measure like same sex marriage, which simply lets conservative gays into the nuclear family club.

      • Alumni on 04.01.2013 at 9:32 am

        I think you mean “insult those of us with MY religious beliefs.” Many, many religions do in fact perform and celebrate gay weddings. Your religion does not own the term “religious.” Not all religions are stuck on this issue.

      • em on 04.01.2013 at 10:01 am

        That’s part of the problem. If you have to rename the same legal union between two consenting adults because of your religion, you are essentially treating people as second-class citizens. Hiding behind religion doesn’t hide bigotry.

        • KO on 04.01.2013 at 11:36 am

          Calling someone or a group of persons something different does not make them second-class citizens. Do you think men and women are second class citizens to each other? If you answer, “no,” then you must acknowledge that there are different laws for men and women because there are differences despite both being 1st class citizens. Having different semantics inherently does not cause some sort of second class citizenship.

          • em on 04.01.2013 at 3:31 pm

            Yes, actually it does. That’s the entire point. Why not just suggest we enact Jim Crow laws for gay people. Oh wait, that didn’t work the first time either.

      • GradStudents2Cents on 04.01.2013 at 11:53 am

        Marriage might have a history in religion, but it is no longer exclusively religious in the United States. Plenty of straight people get married on beaches, at a Justice of the Peace, in their backyards, etc. Plenty of straight people have a non-ordained friend or professional officiant perform the ceremony. Plenty of straight people don’t care at all if their marriage is religiously recognized or not. There’s no guarantee same-sex couples would be seeking to get married in a religious context at the same or higher rate as straight couples. Straight marriage in the US is NO LONGER a purely religious institution. This is why I believe the federal government SHOULD legalize it. Churches or any religious institution that does not support same-sex marriages will not have to perform them. The federal government does not and will not attempt to exert that kind of authority over churches in America. It will simply be providing the same legal rights to same-sex couples that heterosexual couples have.

        Furthermore, what about couples where one or both is transsexual or transgendered such that the couple “looks” straight? Can those marry? Because the members of the couple look and act heterosexually? That seems ridiculously hypocritical if that’s the case.

    • WHB on 04.01.2013 at 9:40 am

      Sigma Chi? Two things:

      1.) Sigma Chi constitution: “to cultivate and maintain the high ideals of friendship, justice, and learning upon which Sigma Chi was founded.” So… your comment… should work on that.

      2.) The Bible also says, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18). So… your fraternity… should work on that (once it gets recognized again).

      • Sam Howe on 04.01.2013 at 1:55 pm

        First, I’d like to underscore the above, anonymous commenter in no way reflects the opinion of Boston University’s Sigma Chi chapter or should be viewed as officially affiliated with our group in any way.

        Our organization’s mission is to foster friendship, justice and learning throughout our campus communities while building values-based leaders. With that said, Sigma Chi is indeed a recognized member of the University’s Inter-Fraternity Council, and we are proud to continue our work as an official member of Boston University’s Greek Life Community.

        Regards,
        Sam Howe
        Public Relations Chairman
        Sigma Chi Fraternity – Iota Upsilon Chapter

        • Sam Howe on 04.01.2013 at 1:57 pm

          To clarify, by above commenter, I meant the individual labeled “SigChi.”

    • Tatiana on 04.01.2013 at 9:59 am

      Not everyone believes in the bible though. And what about separation of church and state?

    • em on 04.01.2013 at 10:02 am

      Which bible?

      You do realize not everyone follows your religion, right?

    • Tatiana on 04.01.2013 at 10:09 am

      Also if you wanna go by the bible, I hope you strictly follow it
      From Leviticus:
      no drinking
      no eating or even touching pork products (bacon?)
      no using contraception or pulling out (no seed wasting)
      no tattoos
      no wearing polyester or any other blended fabrics
      no eating shellfish
      no wearing gold

      If you’re going to ignore parts of the bible, how can you possibly turn around and quote Leviticus 18:22 (“You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.”) as irrefutable law?
      But that’s me trying to introduce logic to religious fanaticism (or, at least, trying to counter some mix of ignorance, bigotry and narcissism with logic).

      • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 4:44 pm

        no drinking? this was referring OT Priests drinking wine or strong drink before going into the temple.

        could probably go without the rest.

      • hi on 04.02.2013 at 4:02 pm

        This is not the beliefs that every religion follows, so your comment does not apply.

    • Except on 04.01.2013 at 10:24 am

      The Biblical Definition of marriage is…
      1) An arranged marriage—Genesis 24:1-4 (and many other passages)
      2) A levirate marriage (If a man died leaving no male heir, his brother was required to marry his widow and produce children)—Deuteronomy 25:5-10
      3) A polygamous marriage—1 Kings 11:3 (and many, many other passages)
      4) Not inter-racial—Deuteronomy 7:14; 1 Corinthians 7:39; 2 Corinthians 6:14
      5) Filled with sexual prohibitions—no intercourse during menstruation (The woman is unclean. Yet another degradation of women.) —The woman cannot withhold sex from her husband; she has to fulfill his desire for sex when he wants it.
      6) Not allowed to be dissolved, i.e. NO DIVORCE—Matthew 5:31-32; Mark 10:2-12; Luke 16:18 (Except when the man wanted to because his wife had become ‘displeasing’ to him—Deuteronomy 24:1-4)
      7) Between a rapist and his victim—Deuteronomy 22:28-29
      8) An arranged marriage by a slave owner for his slaves—Genesis 24:4
      9) Can be between brother and sister—(where else did Cain find a wife?)
      10) Intended to produce children—Without children a woman was:
      Shamed—a barren woman was looked upon as cursed by God
      Unable to be saved—1 Timothy 2:15 (sucks to be infertile)

    • Not SigChi on 04.01.2013 at 1:10 pm

      Plenty of biblical figures engaged in polygamy and incest, though, right? So I’m assuming you’re okay with that?

    • plunder on 04.01.2013 at 1:17 pm

      Sorry, did you just justify your discrimination with a book written by nomadic sheepherders? Why aren’t you following it when it comes to stoning teenagers who curse, forcing raped women to marry their rapists, and shunning clothes made out of different types of fibers?

      Because you don’t really care. You’re just using the book as an excuse to persecute a minority.

      tl;dr: Your book is immoral and you’re immoral for following it unquestioningly.

    • LSHF on 04.01.2013 at 3:52 pm

      The United States Constitution says that people have unalienable rights that should be protected by law and the government. I think we should follow it.

      • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 4:51 pm

        I think that was the Declaration of Independence.

        Do they still teach history here?

  • Daniel T. Moran on 04.01.2013 at 7:11 am

    There is no reason why any two adults who wish to be married to one another should be prevented from doing so. The discussion about “Civil Unions” is a specious one, since even the marriage of two heterosexuals is, by definition, a “Civil Union”. In the eyes of the Commonwealths or States, a marriage is simply a legal commitment, a contract, between two people who want to declare that they will be financially responsible for one another and share their wealth equally. The idea of marriage is a religious term that only suggests that this union has also been sanctioned and sanctified by that particular religion. Nothing in the recent court cases will insist that these religions be forced to perform marriages for anyone. They can still refuse to do that as long as they please, but that should not mean that gay people or lesbians or transgender should be denied the right to make that contract in the eyes of the government, and by virtue of that be afforded the same rights, and the same obligations as heterosexual couples who marry. For the vast majority of our history, the same arguments have been made by people who were against Black people who wanted to marry white people. I am sure that no one would think that was correct then or now. We should celebrate love in a committed relationship by two people. It is good for those people and for society. It is never appropriate to treat one group of Americans as being less as any other group.

    • The philosophy of language on 04.01.2013 at 9:51 am

      I am good with that. Government not the churches per se involved itself in marriage by issuing “licenses”. I see no reason for government to be involve in marriage at all.

    • Shannon on 04.01.2013 at 11:30 am

      Amen.

    • hi on 04.02.2013 at 4:10 pm

      Word. Same sex couples should be recognized as equal under the law and receive the same financial benefits heterosexual couples receive. Let’s put this issue to rest and just grant them equal legal rights. No religion has to agree to it simply because the government allows them equal rights under law.

  • Matt on 04.01.2013 at 9:23 am

    Our generation cannot claim ignorance of the fact that life was a lot better for our fathers who feared God and upheld the moral principles of His holy word. We may turn our backs on Him today and rebuff His Holy word on which the Laws of this nation were founded; but our woes are inevitable.

    • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 10:42 am

      You’re clearly either a white supremacist or have no concept of history. (And unless you’re a rich white supremacist, you probably still have no concept of history.) You want to pick?

      • Shirley you jest? on 04.03.2013 at 1:13 pm

        How on earth does one arrive at such an abstract conclusion simply because someone states their belief in God and how this belief influences society? So now believing in God makes you a white supremacist? Wow political correctness may have reached a new level of absurdity!!

        The laws of nature and nature’s God are mentioned in the Declaration of Independence lending support to the OPs position on this. Moreover the attack on the messenger rather than debating or respecting the merits of the message is “somewhat” immature but I digress.

    • Someone Who Actually Paid Attention in History Class on 04.01.2013 at 1:23 pm

      You mean centuries ago, when millions starvation, infectious disease, and wounds that cannot be easily healed by the miracles of science? When mentally handicapped children were strangled in their cribs or left to die? When women were treated like cattle and men were sent off by the millions to settle petty conflicts between a hand-full of wealthy land-owners? When hundreds of thousands of humans were bound as slaves? When the rates of murder and death and pain and suffering were matched only by rates of illiteracy?

      I mean, if you can find a way to build a time machine back to those days, then by all means, do so. Your dark-age ignorance would be better-suited to the actual dark-ages.

      Me, I’ll stay here, in a nation which was, by the way, founded on the deist principles of the Enlightenment, not on Christianity.

      And speaking of Christianity, let me close this argument out with a quote from the Gospel of Matthew (get it? Because your name is Matt), in which Jesus talked a little bit about people who use the word of God to bring anger and hatred into the world:

      Matthew 7:15–20 “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”

  • bob on 04.01.2013 at 10:08 am

    I didn’t learn much! I’d like to hear what Justice Anthony Kennedy has to say about this matter. Those were also some fancy earrings

  • Miranda Ulker on 04.01.2013 at 10:14 am

    I read an interesting article yesterday. Accepting same sex marriage is basically accepting the end of the world, meaning, the end of procreation. If the entire world decided to become homosexual, what would this mean? Answer: The end of procreation. Therefore, the end of existence = the end of the world.

    The article was titled, Homosexual Marriage Is The Logical Conclusion For A Culture That Celebrates Sterility! Widespread Acceptance Of The Homosexual Lifestyle Is God’s Punishment For Sin!

    And so, for those of you who believe in God, maybe He is allowing this decision to go through as a punishment for sin. We don’t see it as sin of course, because in today’s culture, we have become disensitized to it and therefore, we see it as normal. Any one agains this, is simply a bigot.

    The way I see it is, if you live the homosexual lifestyle, go for it, no one will stop you, however, please DO NOT try and redefine the Holy Sacrament of Marriage, the Perfect Puzzle of Man and Woman that was set forth for procreation. Call it a Civil Union, call it whatever you please, but DO NOT try and redefine The Holy Sacrament of Marriage. For even if you try, the equation will never work. It is “Contra Natura”, against Nature. That is, 2 women and 2 men cannot procreate, the puzzle doesn’t fit. This is fact. So, go ahead, and try and redefine your so called version of Marriage. In the end, you’re fooling yourself.

    Lastly, since most of the world believes that people like me are bigots/offensive…Please. Did you ever stop and think that you are offending me, my Faith and my God, who instituted The Holy Sacrament of Marriage.

    • Student on 04.01.2013 at 11:25 am

      All I got from this was, “Help me! People are trying to stop me from oppressing people! What will I do if I can no longer treat people as second class citizens????”

    • Mike on 04.01.2013 at 12:52 pm

      On one hand, in an extremely narrow view, you have a point. However, the fact of the matter remains that marriage is not required for procreation. In addition, we all know that we are running out of resources and space on our planet, so perhaps adding couples which will not procreate is a better option anyways. I hardly think the world will end if we allow a small portion of the population to have marriages without having children, not to mention that the world will go on without human beings, just as it did before human beings existed. To say that the world will end when we no longer are around is slightly overdramatic.

      Of course, your point also rests on the idea that homosexuals will never have children. If you believe that to be the case 100% of the time, well you might need to make some new friends. There are many cases where people have children, then later find their true love as a homosexual. Not to mention the thousands of children that could be rescued from dismal circumstances in orphanages or poverty by homosexual parents willing to give them a loving upbringing. On top of all that, we also have the technology now sexless reproduction. And if you believe that two men could not raise a child properly, well Simba turned out all right didn’t he?

      As for your natural argument, it is not at all uncommon for animals, aside from humans, to engage in homosexual behavior. Look it up on the internet, and I guarantee you will find an enormous amount of resources.

    • lean on 04.01.2013 at 1:52 pm

      Your argument ultimately boils down to “marriage is for procreation”. That’s all well and good if people don’t get pregnant outside of marriage, but they do. All the time. And this ignores heterosexual couples who might be infertile when they marry. Are you saying that their marriage is not legitimate because they will not be adding to the world’s population?

      Letting gay people marry will not bring about the end of reproduction. Nobody is going to force you into a gay marriage. Go marry a heterosexual and have as many babies as you can afford. In total, the gay population is less than 10% of the American population (estimates vary), and they would have been contributing less to the baby-making than heterosexuals regardless of whether or not they are able to marry. So your argument that birth rates would plunge is specious at best.

    • Monique on 04.02.2013 at 1:27 am

      that article you read was obviously for satirical purposes

  • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 10:17 am

    By very definition, marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Period.
    Do not be led down the road that leads you to accept any modification of that definition.

    • Mike on 04.01.2013 at 10:36 am

      Once upon a time, African were defined as second class citizens. Period. Laws change because people and customs change. To assume otherwise is just ignorance.

      • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 2:04 pm

        This is a no argument. Is an orange an apple. Is the sky green? I am not arguing law, although there should be one against stupid people having the vote…

        • WHB on 04.01.2013 at 2:33 pm

          Marriage (and homosexuality, and bisexuality, and the sun rising every morning) long predates the founding of Judeo-Christian religion… so your view is axiomatically false (the effect can not precede the cause).

          Also, when posting on a topic about laws… the Supreme Court… the Constitution… you should avoid statements like “I am not arguing [about the] law.” It makes you look confused.

          • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 4:15 pm

            I never mentioned mentioned a religion here. Although I think God may have existed before Marriage etc. There is no fallacy there for you.

            What part of my reasoning are you you attacking?

            Please help defend Mike’s logic: “African were defined as second class citizens. Period. Laws change because people and customs change”

            and then you with also lame Ad Hominum attack to finish?

            Shame on you.

    • matt on 04.01.2013 at 10:51 am

      Slavery used to be the norm and the “good book” embraces it. By your logic you must believe in slavery too. Well if you derive your morals from this book that was written thousands of years ago I don’t think your are fit to be involved these types of discussions. This is the god damn USA, people should get to do what they want as long as it doesn’t harm anyone else.

      • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 2:13 pm

        False analogy. I never mentioned whatever book you refer to.

        Unfortunately for us Mr. Caveman, you do not live in a vacuum, so the consequences of your feel good actions do affect me.

        • David Keefe on 04.01.2013 at 2:23 pm

          Curious to know, Peter, how two people of the same sex being married and granted the same rights and protections under federal law that are granted to all other citizens, harms or negatively affects you? How exactly would this harm you?

          • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 3:24 pm

            Well, David I will consider your question.

            First off, I was referring to the the following quote in my reply to matt:

            “This is the god damn USA, people should get to do what they want as long as it doesn’t harm anyone else”

            Maybe it’s in the Bill of Rights.

            Now on your question. Marriage is the union of a man and woman. I don’t understand what you don’t get about that.

          • Oi on 04.01.2013 at 3:58 pm

            Right, Peter, so people should get to do what they want as long as it doesn’t harm anyone else. How does marriage of two men or two women together harm you?

        • Curious on 04.01.2013 at 5:33 pm

          First of all, Peter, you say you don’t mention a certain book or religion when you say marriage is defined as being between a man and a woman. However, you imply that you are speaking of the Bible. I know this because I am sure you aren’t referring to Oxford Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Dictionary, or any other legitimate dictionary I have looked at. If there is another source by which you are getting your “definition” of marriage, I’m sure we’d all be interested.
          Second, I’m also wondering how the relationship between two men or two women would affect your life as you claim it would. Thus far you have essentially responded to this question with reiterations of your statement with no evidence or examples. If you can provide legitimate examples, I’m sure we’d be all ears.

          If I like Italian dressing on my salad but you only like Ranch, is my choice to consume Italian-coated romaine in the privacy of my own home affecting you in some way to the point of outlawing Italian dressing?

          • Peter on 04.02.2013 at 10:37 am

            I have no problem if a couple would have a disordered relationship. I could have one with my pet rock. That does not lead to me needing to have society validate the relationship.
            It’s evident in nature, unless you are an Ameoba, that these same-sex based relationships are a biological dead end. And I don’t think any successful culture has ever survived for long valuing such unions.

            If you consume that Italian dressing in your home, we would have to discuss privacy rights. If you were to do so in public, I would say Ranch is non-exclusive of Italian. If one were to unite the Ranch and Italian, how would I then enjoy my Ranch?

          • Curious on 04.02.2013 at 12:06 pm

            But me enjoying Italian dressing is not asking you to change your preference of liking exclusively Ranch dressing, is it? It’s asking for myself to enjoy Italian dressing equally as much as you enjoy your Ranch dressing, without interfering with your dressing choice. I am not forcing you to eat Italian dressing, just like recognizing homosexual marriage is not forcing you to become a homosexual. Try again.

            Also, have you considered homosexual couples who adopt children produced and abused by terrible opposite-sex parents? That could be seen as promoting the survival of our species by not allowing these children to die at the hands of abusive parents or in orphanages.

            Finally, give an example of a culture that has practiced valuing same-sex marriage and has failed as a society. My guess is this will be a difficult point to prove.

          • Caroline on 04.03.2013 at 2:23 pm

            Peter, I would just like to point out that you just compared a homosexual person to a rock, and I would like to remind you that you’re talking about a human being. I have so many problems with everything else you’ve said up until now, but that takes the cake.

            No, homosexual couples cannot have biological offspring with each other, but neither can a post-menopausal woman, or couples suffering from infertility, or responsible people who would pass on terrible genetic diseases should they choose to procreate and thus choose not to. Allowing homosexual union spells the doom of the human race about as much as any of those examples above. Homosexual couples also have the option of having a biological child by one parent – one mother could find a sperm donor, or one father could use a surrogate mother.

            As for uniting the Ranch and Italian, nobody is putting their Italian in your Ranch. Nobody is forcing you to socialize with anyone you don’t want to. If you really think that allowing people unlike you to enjoy the same rights as you will leave you unable to enjoy your marriage – your “Ranch” – then your relationship is far from stable.

  • Michael on 04.01.2013 at 10:20 am

    In a secular state with a separation between church and state why is the Biblical definition of marriage being used to define the legal status of marriage? If you say that marriage is a religious institution, then the state should not being marrying anyone, whether gay or straight; rather leave that to the church and have everyone just get a civil union. Otherwise, government has no right to define their laws, any of them, based on the religious beliefs of any culture.

    In fact, the best defense of marriage is to expand the institution to be more inclusive, rather than purposely excluding a particular group of people based on a religion that is no longer as prevalent in our society as it once was. The only way to keep our traditions alive is to modernize and update, not to cling to the past simply for the sake of it.

    For the record, I am Catholic and go to church, but I still believe what I believe.

    • Peter on 04.01.2013 at 3:04 pm

      I think the justification should be made on secular basis. Still you are unlikely to win over the secular majority. Forget about trying to win these people.

      Better to be true to your beliefs, and set an example. If your doctrine has said this is wrong, it is wrong. Better to get new friends. Better to try and deprogramme yourself from your social schooling. Do your core values not mean more than any surrender for “inclusiveness”?

  • tomandsarah on 04.01.2013 at 10:46 am

    When one attempts to use religious doctrine to shape how civil law should be defined I get nervous. That is precisely what the Taliban seeks. I suspect the Christians who are up in arms over this would be equally upset to see Islamic principles used to push for reformation of civil law. The same principles that protect me from being subject to Christian law protect Christians.

    • KO on 04.01.2013 at 11:43 am

      If that religious doctrine reflects their morality then I do not see a problem with it. Laws are formed based on the morality of the citizens living under them. Besides tax law, most laws are the summation of individuals’ beliefs. Different people have different beliefs whether reflected in religion or not. In essence you can’t just blame religion for people not wanting certain laws because choice of religion often represents the morality of the individual.

      • hg on 04.01.2013 at 1:27 pm

        Why not tax law? I for one would be thrilled if the conservatives in the US were willing to adopt a Christian perspective on taxes. Matthew 2:18-22; “But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, ‘Why put me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin for the tax.’ And they brought him a denarius. And Jesus said to them, ‘Those likeness and inscription is this?’ They said, ‘Caesar’s.’ Then he said to them, ‘Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’ When they heard it, they marveled. And they left him and went away.”

  • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 11:11 am

    What is the essential public purpose of marriage?

    Answer: To unite a mother and father to their children.

    That is the only reason the government was ever involved in marriage in the first place. Because it promoted the stability of future citizens. Period.

    It is interesting that children are not even an after thought in this debate.

    A government good housekeeping seal of approval on your romantic feeling is not the definition of marriage.

    And please please stop comparing this the racist marriage policies of the past. It is not comparable because that was an actual historical anomoly. Interracial marriage has been very common the vast majority of recorded history.

    • Another Dan on 04.01.2013 at 11:46 am

      So are same sex partnerships. What’s your point?

      • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 1:29 pm

        What was this a response to?

        You already read my point.

        • WHB on 04.01.2013 at 2:41 pm

          I believe he was referencing your erroneous claim that interracial partnerships have been very common in human history, but same-sex partnerships haven’t been. “Another Dan” is probably also noting that not only is your logic unsound, but your statements are wrong and uninformed.

          Furthermore, the Supreme Court cases are not over “good housekeeping seal[s] of approval.” Had you actually been reading the news and briefs, you’d know that millions (maybe billions) in benefits are at stake. For you—a straight man—it may seem trivial… but that‘s because you aren’t [openly, at least] gay.

          • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 5:26 pm

            I never said anything about “partnerships”. I said marriage. Interracial marriage is ancient. Gay marriage has never existed anywhere at anytime because it did not fit the basic definition of marriage.

            So you can toss around terms like erroneous. But the only thing you knocked down was a strawman of your own making.

            Also this has nothing to do with benefits since civil unions would accomplish the same thing. Which really just shows the fundamental dishonesty of such an argument. This is about radically altering institutions that pre-existd governments. It is about using the laws of governments to alter reality since the laws of nature will not cooperate.

            I am not against anyone enjoying benefits and relationships. What is being missed though is that gay marriage is by the basic definition of marriage, in every society in history, is immpossible in the same way that “male mother” is.

    • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 11:54 am

      “That is the only reason the government was ever involved in marriage in the first place. Because it promoted the stability of future citizens. Period.”

      All the more reason to banish the state from regulating relationships. If the current order demands coercion to foster relationships that support it, then it is not one that deserves our support.

      • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 1:28 pm

        Chris,

        That is certainly a cynical way of looking at it. The social science is extant that shows children are at a disadvantage in life when their parents are not commited to each other in marriage.

        Nearly every culture has a formal recognition of marriage because it served the good of that society. You see we are in an age of feelings were common sense and the common good are no longer considerations.

        The traditional (and by traditional I mean all of human history) model worked exceeedingly well in stabilizing cultures prior to “no fault” divorce.

        The state does not regulate relationships. That is the point. Gay marriage is the attempt to introduce state regulation of relationships. As you will see in the first thing I wrote. It was not about adult relationships but for the stability of children.

        • Alumni on 04.01.2013 at 2:25 pm

          What about the stability of the children being raised in a household with gay parents? Don’t those children deserve the same protections that marraige affords?

          • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 2:39 pm

            Gay unions do not produce children.

            Don’t those children have a right to both of their parents? Or are dads/moms unnecessary now?

          • Oi on 04.01.2013 at 4:52 pm

            Pediatricians and Sociologists seem to think a pair of parents, regardless of gender, are the stabilizing fact that matters.

        • WHB on 04.01.2013 at 2:43 pm

          You’re wrong about the traditional model stabilizing cultures. In fact, the widespread visibility of gays in the late-20th century correlate to the longest period of peace in recorded human history.

          Not a causation; just an obvious (and refreshingly fact-based) rebuttal to your argument. Well, “argument.”

          • KO on 04.01.2013 at 4:22 pm

            There is no causation between gays and more peace. You’re full of it.

          • Oi on 04.01.2013 at 4:50 pm

            That’s what he just said. “Not a causation.”

          • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 5:29 pm

            So homosexuality has stopped generational single motherhood, deadbeat dads and crime in poor areas that result from both? Got it. Thanks for the education.

            You say correlation is not causation (correctly). But then you go on to make the attribution anyway.

        • Annoyed on 04.01.2013 at 7:32 pm

          Have you looked at recent statistics regarding children raised by homosexual couples compared to those raised by single parents or divorced parents? This is in response to your comment: “Or are dads/moms unnecessary now?”.

          About 50% of marriages between heterosexual couples result in divorce, what does that tell you about the stability of the children they bring to this earth?

          You are presenting a completely different argument here which is not supported by empirical evidence in either case (implying that children raised by homosexual parents are less “stable” than those raised by heterosexual parents). If such “instability” is to arise, it probably has more to do with the lack of legal security that their counterparts (children of heterosexual parents) have as well as potentially being ostracized by narrow minded individuals.

          Let’s try and remember (as well as be consistent about) separation of State and Church. Given the large diversity in religious and spiritual beliefs (and those who do are not religious/spiritual), do you think it is a good idea to mix the two things?

          Let’s also try and remember that everyone in the US should be treated equally as US citizens. This argument is not about the state regulating relationships, it’s about equal rights as US citizens (no matter what your class, education, sexual orientation, race, religious denomination, etc. is).

          Are you implying that homosexual individuals should not have the same legal rights as heterosexual individuals?

        • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 7:42 pm

          The state does regulate relationships. It extends rights to monogamous heterosexual couples that it does not to any other family arrangement. It is thus in the business of promoting a single organizational structure above all others. If this is the predominant structure that would exist no matter what, then what need to explicitly incentivize it and discourage other forms? If not, then we must ask ourselves what this structure contributes that it is worth using the power of the state to promote?

          If we look at the structures that endorse nuclear families, the most obvious are orthodox religion, patriarchy and capitalism. While religion could be simply an encoding of the trends of an earlier time turned into morality through longevity, one might also consider that churches provide the community that larger family structures might otherwise. Patriarchy is reproduced through the dominance of an individual man in each household; it would be much more difficult to maintain if there were larger family structures where there was a more extended support network and more checks against individual domination. (To a large extent, feminism has already weakened male domination within households. With women able to earn wages and act as social beings in their own right, it’s harder to keep them in the house.) Capitalism, quite simply, benefits from putting a wage laborer at the head of a household and requiring the unpaid labor of a woman who performs the work of raising more laborers.

          What is the alternative? Well, relationships based on love and consent as opposed to mere reproduction is a good start. I would also suggest that families should be as large or small as the people in them feel comfortable with.

    • DoYourResearch on 04.01.2013 at 2:08 pm

      Sorry to turn the tables on your obviously well thought out argument, but the American Academy of Pediatrics has stated that marriage equality is BENEFICIAL to children.

      Here’s a link to help you educate yourself.
      http://www.hrc.org/blog/entry/american-academy-of-pediatrics-marriage-equality-is-good-for-children

      • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 2:41 pm

        I did not know pediatricians were sociologists.

        Show me the long term studies they used. Let me help. There are not any.

        • LSHF on 04.01.2013 at 3:43 pm

          Yeah, if only sociologists would weigh in on this… oh wait.

          http://www.asanet.org/press/asa_files_amicus_brief_in_same-sex_marriage_cases.cfm

          • Oi on 04.01.2013 at 4:00 pm

            Dan doesn’t like being informed.

          • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 5:31 pm

            For any meaningful understanding of the social sciene of an issue (that is not politically based) you need a solid 30 years of research with a large number of test cases. We have nothing close to that with gay marriage or gay parenting. So. yeah.

          • Annoyed on 04.02.2013 at 5:48 pm

            Well Dan, by that logic, the same arbitrary cutoff applies to scientific articles which may imply children of same-sex partners are in some way more “unstable” than children of heterosexual partners.

  • Caitlin on 04.01.2013 at 11:29 am

    The argument that same-sex marriage should be banned because of religious/biblical reasons is a weak one. Not everyone is religious, and even those who are may still believe in equal rights for all (independent of their sexuality) or may be part of a religion where same-sex marriage is acceptable.

    Same-sex marriage is important to me for a variety of reasons, the least of which being that it is unjust to deny one group the right to marry whomever they chose. By banning same-sex marriage, marriage becomes a privilege that heterosexual couples are given and homosexual couples are denied. Based on the stance that this country has taken on such inequities, this is illegal.

    Further, allowing marriage for heterosexual couples and civil unions for same-sex couples creates a “separate but equal” dynamic, which has been proven to be unconstitutional. Civil unions do not even allow for the same rights for a couple as marriage does. Married couples are recognized more within our society and they receive certain tax benefits that civil unions do not. Even if these benefits were matched, the “separate but equal” situation would continue, and by definition having separate systems is not equal.

    Do not use religion to justify something a belief about a problem that really has nothing to do with religion. This is a problem concerning equal rights for all within the United States. Forcing one’s religious beliefs onto another is not okay and trying to justify banning same-sex marriage by citing religious-based arguments is doing exactly that.

    • KO on 04.01.2013 at 11:50 am

      There is no separate but equal application in your example. I assume you’re referring to the unconstitutionality of prohibiting interracial marriage. The difference with interracial marriage was that it did not allow the crossing over of racial groups. Period. Whites could not marry blacks and vice-versa. In this case “homosexuals” or more likely “bisexuals” could still marry a heterosexual and vice-versa. There is no separation going on; it is simple semantics. Also race isn’t a lifestyle whereas sexual orientation is. That alone makes a huge difference.

      • Aaron L'Heureux on 04.01.2013 at 1:49 pm

        Heh, sexual orientation ‘is a lifestyle.’ That’s a good one.

        • KO on 04.01.2013 at 4:31 pm

          Aaron do you have anything to refute or are you just here to attack? Please respond to the substance of my post instead of lowering yourself to ridicule.

          The key was that homosexuality involves an action, which is why I called it a lifestyle, whereas race is not associated with any particular action.

          Also homosexuality as well as heterosexuality could be classified as lifestyles
          “Lifestyle involves the typical features of everyday life of an individual or a group. These features pertain to interests, opinions, behaviors, and behavioral orientations. For example, lifestyle relates to choice and allocation of leisure time; preferences in clothes and food; tastes in music, reading, art, and television programs; and choice of consumer goods and services.”

          Considering mate choice is a behavior, and homosexuality involves mate choice, I’m going to have to say that your post is uneducated.

          http://www.sociologyencyclopedia.com/subscriber/uid=75/tocnode?id=g9781405124331_yr2011_chunk_g978140512433118_ss1-49&authstatuscode=202

          • KO on 04.01.2013 at 4:34 pm

            To clarify:

            I’m not saying whether the homosexual lifestyle is a lifestyle choice or not. However, it is certainly a lifestyle or way of living.

          • Aaron L'Heureux on 04.01.2013 at 4:45 pm

            What attack?

            You placed both sexual identities inside quotations and then used the politically loaded concept of sexual orientation being a lifestyle (which typically implies that it’s a decision someone has made as opposed to a biological attraction) without being clear.

            There’s no substance to respond to.

          • KO on 04.01.2013 at 6:44 pm

            Aaron-
            There’s plenty of substance there. Whether you choose to recognize it or not is another issue. Typical liberal saying there’s no substance to respond to.

            Try :
            There is no separate but equal application in your example. I assume you’re referring to the unconstitutionality of prohibiting interracial marriage. The difference with interracial marriage was that it did not allow the crossing over of racial groups. Period. Whites could not marry blacks and vice-versa. In this case “homosexuals” or more likely “bisexuals” could still marry a heterosexual and vice-versa. There is no separation going on; it is simple semantics.

            I see absolutely no separation of groups here. Just a different name.

          • Oi on 04.02.2013 at 2:48 pm

            “Typical liberal saying there’s no substance to respond to.”

            LOL.

            You’re using flawed logic and semantics to make a bigoted argument. Good luck having people rationally discuss things with you.

    • Cassandra on 04.01.2013 at 12:35 pm

      I completely agree!

  • Student on 04.01.2013 at 11:30 am

    “Religious freedom doesn’t mean you can force others to live by your own beliefs.” – Barack Obama

    • KO on 04.01.2013 at 11:44 am

      Except society is all about forcing others to live by people’s beliefs. Find some laws that aren’t some reflection of people’s belief systems.

      • plunder on 04.01.2013 at 1:22 pm

        The point is that your beliefs are supposed to be justified on secular principles that can be arrived at regardless of religious belief. We call these particular beliefs ‘ethics.’

  • Matt on 04.01.2013 at 11:30 am

    For all of those who like to qoute the Bible for the only reason why homosexuals should not marry, I hope you don’t have any tattos or a wearing clothes of different fabrics. “You are to keep My statutes. You must not crossbreed two different kinds of your livestock, sow your fields with two kinds of seed, or put on a garment made of two kinds of material.” “Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves” Both are in Leviticus.

    I find it funny how “Christians” like to pick things from the Bible say it is a sin, but omit other passages because it may interfer with normal life.

    • jesse on 04.01.2013 at 1:07 pm

      As a non-relIgious I do not relate well to any religious teachings. That said the King John Bible is a book of interpretated and translated stories meant for teachings and written long ago. Many of the original languages used in the writings are long dead. Meanings of words have changed, as has technology over millenia.

      I have no problem people picking and choosing thier passages for interpretation in the modern world context because the reality of the interpretations necessary have changed. But A passage or many passages deemed incorrect in today’s world context does not invalidate the entire text. To imply such a rule would mean all my assignments would be graded perfect or failure. That is not a world that is sustainable.

      • lean on 04.01.2013 at 1:33 pm

        But one thing Christians like to say is that the Bible is all true, and no part of the Bible can be false because the Bible is the word of God. A common saying is that the Bible is either all true, or it is all false. There is no in between. That means, that by their own admission, they can’t pick and choose what parts they want from the Bible. They have to follow all of it.

        • jesse on 04.03.2013 at 10:27 am

          I have never come across a Christian who believes the bible is all true. Or maybe it has not come up in conversations. Either way such a blanket statement about all Christians is not likely to be true.

      • Dan on 04.01.2013 at 1:33 pm

        There is not “King John Bible” it is the King James Bible and it is merely one translation.

        As for Biblical languages. Last I check Hebrew and Greek Still exist. I can point you to Biblical Hebrew and Greek scholars right here in the Boston area.

        • jesse on 04.03.2013 at 11:00 am

          Your right. Of course I meant King James. The actual languages used are of great debate, but scholars agree the languages thought to be the original texts include Biblical Hebrew, Aramaic and Koine Greek. None of which are spoken in native tounges. They are studied by scholars today, but scholars still argue meanings and interpretations. Because words written thousands of years ago have to be interpreted in today’s context. Even if native speakers still existed the languages would have evolved. Thus my point, literal interpretations of any anchient text is futile.

  • Ruby on 04.01.2013 at 11:53 am

    Miranda Ulker has an interesting point, but I have to agree with Michael, and tomandsarah too. Until we have a perfect government under the authority of YHWH (which may happen sooner than we think) I think our current government needs to stay out of our personal relationships. Here and now, a committed partnership deserves recognition in matters of finances, families and private living. For the record, I am a believer in Jesus Christ and also in His command and example to Love (i.e. Respect) each other as ourselves. That means everybody.

  • Hima on 04.01.2013 at 12:36 pm

    People compare gay marriage and slavery as if the two are moral equivalents. The resson we are having this debate shows the contunuing decadence of Western societies in general and American in particular. I personally believe it’s a symptom of something deeper than gay marriage. which is namely the failure of Western Christianity and Christians. What’s going to be next having the governement sanctioned dog marriage. I don’t hate gay people as human beings and certainly would love for them to enjoy all the benefits heterosexuuals couple enjoy .After all we live in a democracy??? however, marriage is between a man and a women has always been. However, in a society where everyone can define his moral standards I am not surprised.

    • plunder on 04.01.2013 at 1:19 pm

      “marriage is between a man and a women [sic] has always been.”

      Your sentence is barely readable. Please tell me you’re not a BU student.

      That being said, you’re repeating a popular myth. Marriage has been different in every culture at every time. “One man, one woman” was invented by Christian society and was never the norm for the rest of the globe.

      • Hima on 04.02.2013 at 1:19 pm

        Well well well shakespeare you don’t like my spelling error. I went to BU and when I was a student there I am absolutely certain I would have kick you shakespearian derrier anytime. English is my 5th language. That being said, how many do you speak? You attacking my speliing mistake rather than my argument says more about you than it does about me. By the way which ” rest of the globe” are you talking about? The one created by your immagination or what? I bet you are either an Anthro or History major. Tell me one society that you have known or read about in which guys marry guys and women marry women as the norm? I have beliefs but you have an agenda… that’s the difference between you and I. One more thing why do you hate Christianity?

    • lean on 04.01.2013 at 1:38 pm

      Then let’s separate the religious marriage ceremony from the legal marriage ceremony. Everyone gets civil unions with the exact same rights and benefits. If you want the religious ceremony, then go get married in a church, and churches can decide who they will marry. But that religious ceremony will have zero meaning outside of whatever spiritual weight it carries. It will not grant you visiting rights in the hospital, it will not help you with insurance, and it sure as hell won’t give you any extra legal standing.

      • Hima on 04.02.2013 at 5:30 pm

        Marriage as a legal entity is a modern creation…There are societies out there in which legal documents are not required to recognize married people. If I said a women is my wife she is in the eyes of all… and the same applies if she aknowledges me as her husband. You should’ve told me that the argument on the face of it is really about money… How predictable… I don’t care if gays and lesbians get all the legal rights enjoyed by other. However, I honestly don’t enjoy people who attacked Christianity and Christians in order to advance certain ideologies. My friend I have to tell you without Christianity and the Bible we Americans will not be enjoying the rights we so take for granted today. It’s a fact of history despite the efforts by some to suppress it.

  • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 1:06 pm

    As the onion article so adeptly put it, “Supreme Court on Gay Marriage: Sure, Who Cares?”

  • Jane on 04.01.2013 at 2:38 pm

    For all those who say, “Marriage is about procreation” or “the state should not define marriage,” I would remind you that, setting religion aside, “marriage” today is almost equally about rights of access and participation and, frankly, finances. If you are gay and are not married to your partner, when your partner gets sick the law does not allow you to make decisions about his or her care; those decisions are made by others who may very well choose to ignore your knowledge of your partner. In addition, you won’t be able to inherit your partner’s assets, even those you have acquired together, without paying heavy financial penalties not levied on opposite-sex partners. (This is the core of one of the cases before the Supreme Court). Until “marriage” by whatever name, is not required to receive these benefits, the government’s approval and acceptance of same-sex union is of critical importance, even if that shouldn’t be so.

  • Jeff on 04.01.2013 at 3:56 pm

    What I have a problem with those advocating for gay marriage under the label “marriage equality” is that they label opponents of gay marriage to be against equality when they themselves wouldn’t consider all marriages to be equal as well. I mean what is bigamy expect that it is that one person is married to two other people. Aren’t they two of the same thing if you want to call “marriage” as two consenting individuals who love each other, then why not polygamy? Also, running off if gay marriage is based on the status of being gay, how about bisexuals? The exact same ethical, moral, scientific, philosophical arguments that are used to say that homosexuality is a natural state for mankind, have to admit that bisexuality is a natural state for another portion for mankind. And it might be an even LARGER portion of mankind than homosexuals. If it is a matter of hard wiring, then my limiting marriage to a man and a woman, a man and a man and a woman and a woman, then a bisexual can never experience happiness because they cannot marry a man and a woman so they can experience the full range of their hardwired, necessary accoutrements for happiness. So NO one is for marriage equality. No body is saying you should get married at three or at five or at eight. If one is for marriage equality then they should be for polygamy, and incest. If we are not dealing with what the nature of marriage is, then we are not really talking about marriage are we? We are not dealing with the real issues.

    I for one hold one to how marriage can been defined and its function for millenia as between a male and a female. Also, I really find it annoying that people will keep on using the levitical laws (must believe the whole law strawman argument) without understanding the intention of the message is for (the Israelite nation separating themselves from the nations surrounding them).

    • Nope on 04.02.2013 at 1:50 pm

      …that… is not how bisexuality works. Bisexuals are capable of monogamy, and can indeed find happiness in a committed relationship with a single PERSON of either/any gender. An inability to ‘experience the full range of their hardwired, necessary accoutrements for happiness’ by not being allowed to marry both a man and a woman may be true for some INDIVIDUALS (regardless of orientation) but is not true for ALL bisexuals.

      Your attempted sidetracking of the debated issue (legalizing same-sex marriage) with arguments that ‘marriage equality’ should be more inclusive and proves itself not to be by not also advocating for marriage rights for those in bigamous, polygamous or incestuous relationships, is laughably countered by your second to last sentence. If you really do “hold one to how marriage can been defined and its function for millenia as between a male and a female” you will be pleased to note that the taking of multiple wives by a male husband, as well as heterosexual marriages that could today be considered incestuous (marriage of a daughter to a father’s brother, for example) have also been included within the parameters of both accepted societal (and Biblical) marital norms within the past millennia.

      Although, as you astutely point out, marriage rights for these types of relationships are not advocated for in this particular debate. This would be because this particular debate is over the denial of institutional rights to same-sex couples granted by the state to heterosexual couples. ‘Marriage Equality’ then refers to the right to equal treatment under the law for those in both heterosexual and same-sex marriages.

  • gabs on 04.01.2013 at 4:38 pm

    Theres is a natural order in the universe where man and woman were naturally ordered to procreation if we break that natural order there will be great consecuences for our humanity.

    • MoonBatman on 04.01.2013 at 9:54 pm

      You would fit in really well in say, 13th century Europe
      …and not just because you spell creatively.

  • Jeff on 04.01.2013 at 4:44 pm

    I think that marriage as a whole should be solely a religious institution, and decisions on who can marry should be left to those institutions and not interfered with by governments. As for the de jure status that marriage grants, any two people should be allowed to enter the protection of a legal partnership, regardless of gender. If this was done the government would not have to waste time and money debating this, and if individuals that could not marry were dissatisfied, they could lobby their religious group to change it .

    • Chris on 04.01.2013 at 7:46 pm

      Why only two? Leaving the issue of calling it “marriage” aside entirely, why should the government regulate any aspect of relationships?

      • Jeff on 04.03.2013 at 2:39 pm

        I don’t believe that they should; the government should merely recognize the legal benefits that “marriage” currently provides to any two people who wish to enter a legal partnership.
        For example, in court, one cannot be legally forced to testify against one’s spouse. Also, I have a gay family friend who recently married his longtime partner. He stated he did not need to marry to prove anything, as his private relationship is his own business, but instead did so for inheritance reasons, so that if he or his partner should die they will be entitled to the others pension and can inherit the others estate as a spouse (which is at a reduced tax rate than if they were legally not married). This is also a major problem for many gays.
        Marriage is a religious institution and the Government has no place in interfering with religious groups regardless of policy. Equal rights and protection under the law, however it is responsible for; if we as a society could make this distinction and not get so hung up on the word “marriage” it would be a lot easier and a lot less controversial for the Government to ensure that everyone has opportunity to achieve same rights and equal protection under the law, regardless of what they choose to do in their private lives.

  • Jess on 04.01.2013 at 5:33 pm

    If I’m speaking, yes it should be, without second thought!

  • JLeslie on 04.01.2013 at 5:47 pm

    There is a wonderful episode of Parks and Recreation in which Leslie Knope “marries” a pair of penguins at the Pawnee Zoo in order to promote the zoo. What she didn’t realize is that they were both males. The gay community gets very excited about this, but a spokeswoman for The Society for Family Stability Foundation comes to Leslie’s office and utters one of my favorite lines in television:”When gays marry, it ruins marriage for the rest of us.” To me the whole episode (which ends with Leslie driving the penguins to a zoo in Iowa, where gay marriage is legal) sums up the absurdity of the anti-gay marriage front. If you are straight, no one is telling you to marry someone of your own gender. No one is telling you to do anything! No one is ruining anything for you. If you think that homosexuals, or homosexuals who marry, are going to hell, that’s just fine for you in your own little world. And if this is ruining marriage for you, that’s your own problem. Massachusetts legalized gay marriage almost 9 years ago, and as far as I can see, we here haven’t been struck by plagues of locusts, boils, or frogs. It has simply given stability to many gay couples in the form of equal recognition and rights guaranteed by the state. Without national recognition, however, gay couples (and their children) do not benefit from federal benefits and safety nets (Social Security spousal rights, avoidance of inheritance taxes, etc.) that are given, for no particular reason, to heterosexual married couples.

    I agree that the word marriage should disappear from the debate. Everyone, gay and straight alike, should be able to be in civil unions that are recognized by the federal government. Then, if people want to get “married”, they can do that in a church or a temple or their basement or on a beach or at a Red Sox game.

  • Appalled Parent on 04.01.2013 at 8:03 pm

    I find this thread of comments to be depressing. I was under the misguided impression that college students were, for the most part, open-minded, fair and progressive. So many of you on here are expressing such homophobic beliefs. I am a straight woman in a 25 plus year marriage, with 2 children. I attend a mainline Protestant church on a regular basis. One does not choose one’s sexual orientation. Our laws should apply equally to ALL…no matter the sexual orientation, race, creed, etc. Marriage confers certain rights that are being denied to an entire group of citizens. ENOUGH already…DOMA needs to go and Marriage Equality to needs to replace it.

    • student on 04.02.2013 at 9:40 pm

      “I believe in freedom of speech and equal rights, except when it applies to things I disagree with.”

      -You

      • Oi on 04.03.2013 at 11:03 am

        I don’t see any stifling of speech in this parent’s statements, just a disappointment in the fact that some people are on the wrong side of the argument in her opinion.

      • Appalled Parent on 04.03.2013 at 4:56 pm

        No, student, I am saying just the opposite. I am advocating FOR equal rights for ALL citizens, not just the ones some, in a narrow minded world, approve of. I do not once suggest any of these opinions can not be expressed, I am just saying that I find it surprising that supposedly educated people are showing such ignorant opinions. Thank you, Oi, for your remarks.

  • Craig on 04.01.2013 at 11:11 pm

    If marriage were nothing more than a static document and a never changing institution, it would have died out a long time ago- for nothing static exists for long. We honor the Constitution in the same way because its intent makes it relevant. We honor marriage because we honor love. The intent of marriage is far stronger than the superficial limits many have tried to impose upon it through the ages. For that reason, marriage has always resisted any attempt to define it in sham antiquity.

  • Anonymous on 04.03.2013 at 3:37 pm

    Marriage for all, Holy Matrimony for the church.

  • a human person on 04.07.2013 at 1:45 pm

    sodom and gamorrah all over again..we know what happend there:

  • Telling The Truth on 04.30.2013 at 12:06 am

    marriage should be between a man and a woman, and it is very bad as it is for us straight guys now looking for a good woman to meet since many of them are certainly gay today.

  • God made Man and Woman on 06.24.2013 at 1:43 pm

    “same sex marriage” it totally defies the Divine law, attempts to kill morale, and is a disrespect to life.

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