October 29, 2008  ·  Lessig

Proposition 8 is the CA initiative to amend the CA constitution to ban same-sex marriage. This is far from my usual field, but it is an issue I feel strongly about. Click for 8 minutes of a diversion on 8.

  • http://jeffreyharmon.net Jeffrey Harmon

    While there are strong similarities between the gay rights movement and the civil rights movement, believing that gay unions are equal to heterosexual unions and that opposition to gay marriage is equal to the discrimination of race is a misconception.

    If the state legalizes gay marriage, then suddenly marriage changes from a protected belief of a small minority, to the false impression that the state (which is an extension of the people) believes that it is morally acceptable to practice homosexuality.

    As individuals, law abiding homosexuals should be entitled to every inalienable right held by any heterosexual; but as couples, gay relationships no longer hold an equal stance to the synergy of a heterosexual relationship. The answer lies in procreation—the primary responsibility of a family.

    The gay agenda wants to redefine marriage as simply commitment, honesty, affection, and warmth between two loving individuals. If so then it simply becomes an equal protection issue and the gay couple argues they are being discriminated against for a relationship they claim holds equal commitment and value to the heterosexual relationship. This argument breaks down because it ignores posterity and procreation. Children are what differentiate the marriage contract from all other consensual adult arrangements. The state has always had a keen interest in the bearing and rearing of children. Indeed that is why the state got in the business of registering and recognizing marriage in the first place.

    The point, both legally and historically, the gay family can ONLY exist as a product of government policy and modern science, and a dependence on the natural family. It is very clear that there is no natural procreative ability between gay partners. The procreative ability between heterosexual couples is, by contrast, perfectly natural, and dates back to the start of recorded history. The natural family would continue whether the government or science became involved or not. Thus, we see that a homosexual relationship is not naturally equal to a heterosexual relationship.

    The Declaration of Independence proclaims that we are endowed with unalienable rights, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. John Locke, called this “natural law”. Natural law is not a creation or product of the state, but was to be protected by the state as these are the natural rights of all men inseparably connected to being human. Gays may argue that they are in the pursuit of liberty and happiness, yet there is no logical means by which they are naturally in the pursuit of life. Indeed we may argue that the gay movement, by its very nature, is a movement in pursuit of death, its own extinction, for without the intervention of the state and modern science, homosexuality results in the termination of posterity. Thus, from the perspective of both science and state we can see that the union of man and women, with their resulting children compared to the gay union are polar opposites both in origin and fruit.

    What about couples who are infertile? Many married heterosexuals choose not to have children, and others cannot because of medical problems or physical handicaps. But gays fought furiously to convince the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from their books as a “disorder”, or medical problem. The majority of the United States will now agree that homosexuality is not a medical problem or disorder. Even in perfect medical condition, a gay couple cannot procreate without the help of a third party. Therefore homosexual relationships and heterosexual relationships are inherently, and naturally, unequal. Gays should NOT shunned because of their beliefs and tendencies. Nor does this fact infringe on their God given rights. The argument is that the two relationships are very different from one another and for that reason they should be defined differently.

    More here

  • http://someofnothing.com slag

    Well-argued! Unfortunately, the Jeffrey Harmons of the world insist on trying to make themselves feel better about their lives by keeping others down. And they’ll highlight whatever petty distinctions they can in order to make that happen. Sadly, I’m afraid that no logical argument can circumvent that psychosis. But please keep trying.

  • http://hans.gerwitz.com/ hans

    I agree with the conservatives: “marriage” is an institution of religion, a sectarian concept that the secular state has no business redefining.

    Government institutions should offer only civil unions and let the God-fearing fight to define their word “marriage” on the open fields of the culture war. This debate does not even belong on the ballot.

  • http://blog.rictic.com Peter Burns

    In response to Jeffrey Harmon: your argument would hold much more weight if the world’s population were in danger of dropping too low. As it is there are plenty of people.

    Furthermore, the state incentivizes marriage and child-rearing separately.

    To hans, all that I’d say is that so long as marriage is a secular institution it should be treated as one.

  • http://www.jaduncan.com James Duncan

    “The point, both legally and historically, the gay family can ONLY exist as a product of government policy and modern science”

    Really? Just like the ancient Greeks depended upon modern science? Or, indeed, just like homosexual long term relationships and families didn’t exist before homosexuality was legalised? I’d really be interested/amused by any form of argument that you could develop regarding the need for science, polity or any ensuing developed policy to have a meaningful homosexual relationship, but sadly I am not under the impression that one can justify your statement in any way, shape, or form.

  • David Robertson

    Peter Burns: Yes, absolutely. In the last thirty years global population has doubled. As of today it’s around the 6.7 billion mark. By 2050 it is expected to rise to 10 billion.

    As for Mr. Harmon, I’m afraid I respectfully disagree with what you have to say.

    From how I see it (and feel free to correct me) you make two key points:
    A) A heterosexual commitment between two people (i.e. marriage) is generally capable of producing children, whereas a homosexual commitment is not capable – by natural means.
    B) Only via technological/medical means and/or state infrastructure can a homosexual commitment bear children (e.g. artificial insemination, adoption) – a ‘natural’ method does not exist.

    Based on these points, you draw the conclusion that heterosexual marriages are more ‘significant’, more valuable than homosexual marriages – specifically because of the potential to procreate. I disagree.

    We both agree that there are means by which a gay couple could act as parent to a child (see point B). It is less likely, given human anatomy, but it is, to all intents, a possibility. I would suggest that this makes gay couples equal (today) to straight couples.

    Anyway, consider a gay couple acting as parents. The same couple could have choosen not to become parents, in the same way a heterosexual couple has the same choice to become parents or not. Thus, we can divide all couples into four categories by sexual orientation and intention to have children:

    1) straight and wanting children;
    2) straight and not wanting children
    3) gay and wanting children
    4) gay and not wanting children

    You define marriage as being centred around children, saying how children differentiate marriage from other relationships. Let us take this to be true. Imagine a relationship of type 1). The couple live happily together and have, say, three children. The couple have taken vows to honour, protect, etc. each other – to all intents and purposes, this is a marriage, yes? Now, imagine the same relationship, but with gay parents (type 3). Everyone is happy, both parents and children, and all are perfectly functioning members of society. Is there any significant difference between the families? Furthermore, since both families have borne children, are they not both marriages (by your definition)?

    You mention that the state has a vested interest in the production of children. Aren’t these families – these marriages – equal, in the eyes of the state?

    The state, in your model, prioritises procreation. A type 1 and a type 3 couple would be of equal value. By the same reasoning, a type 2 and a type 4 couple are of equal value. The difference is that (by your reasoning) straight couples are more likely to procreate than gay couples: The probabilities of each couple type are not 25%, not equal. I don’t think that this difference in probability, in likelihood makes a gay marriage any less valid or significant than a straight one. Equally, I don’t think this is sufficient grounding to say that gay couples are ‘in pursuit of death’.

    I would also like to discuss the point that gay couples bearing children are unnatural. In terms of means, this is absolutely correct; it is only through unnatural technology and infrastructure that this is achieved; but the fact that something is unnatural or artifical does not make it bad!

    I would argue that there is very little in human society that is natural. Skyscrapers are not natural: they do not occur as part of a random, natural process. Computers are not natural products – they are highly complex, the result of a large-scale design process. Dams are not natural – bu they provide many benefits (e.g. HE power). Organ transplants are not a natural process. Anti-cancer treatments are not natural, but I would assume that both you and I would readily take advantage of them if neccesary. Something unnatural is not neccesarily bad.

    Humans change things so they are not natural. From the development of tools, to large-scale construction, we change our environment. What if we could make changes so that it became natural for homosexual couples to be parents to children as easily as heterosexual couples? (I’m talking here in terms of surogacy, adoption, artifical insemination, etc. and making them more availble – not alterations to human anatomy). I think it’s fair to say that both relationships would be equal;if they were marriages, they would be equally valid. Surely then the two relationships would be defined as having equal significance?

    I believe we don’t have to make such changes – or, if we do, that they are possible and feasable – and because of that, I don’t believe gay marriage is or needs to be any less significant than non-gay marriage.

    I apologise for the rambling in this argument, and in case I have misunderstood or misrepresented your views.

  • Adrian Lopez

    “Children are what differentiate the marriage contract from all other consensual adult arrangements. The state has always had a keen interest in the bearing and rearing of children. Indeed that is why the state got in the business of registering and recognizing marriage in the first place.”

    By this logic, heterosexual couples who can’t bear children are not really married. Your attempt to address this specific objection at the end of your post is unconvincing and fails completely at its purpose (deflecting criticism).

  • http://www.jeffmccord.org Jeff McCord

    Bravo to this post!

    Check this out:
    http://www.jeffmccord.org/apple-and-google-reject-prop-8/

    Apple and Google have both publicly support gay marriage and ask ALL to vote NO on Prop 8! Bravo Google and Apple!

  • publius

    @Jeffrey Harmon

    Its refreshing to see a comment more thought out and articulated than the garden variety, however it falls short on many accounts, of which I will name a few.

    “the false impression that the state (which is an extension of the people) believes that it is morally acceptable to practice homosexuality.”
    The state is indeed an agent of its people but it is not the moral authority of its people. That function is left up to the individual and one should not be led to conclude that what the state allows is an implicit endorsement of what should transpire. America has a tradition of individual liberty and freedom and as such we allow “vices” like pornography, gambling, and drunkenness yet the state does not actively promote their usage. Don’t mistake what is allowed for what is advocated.

    “Children are what differentiate the marriage contract from all other consensual adult arrangements.”
    One counterexample: Polygamy. Don’t say “all other arrangements”. It leaves your argument open to quick refutation.

    “Gays may argue that they are in the pursuit of liberty and happiness, yet there is no logical means by which they are naturally in the pursuit of life.”
    One can argue quite effectively that companionship is indeed part of the pursuit of life. Or one can naively argue that two out of three inalienable rights constitute a supermajority :-) Gun ownership is another right that fits this mold.

    @ hans
    i agree the government should only recognize civil unions. unfortunately, the government decides what is marriage. and unfortunately, it is on the ballot.

    vote no on 8!

  • http://www.Bunsnip.com Sra of Bunsnip.com

    Thank you for this excellent argument, Larry.

    As for what Hans says about marriage being a religious establishment, where’s the historical back-up for that? What, no one got married before organized religion came into play? I call bullocks.

  • Daryl

    I am sick and tired of “yes on 8″ supporters saying things like about gay marriage being like “incestuous marriage”,” “polygamy,” and “pedophilia.” For the record, the people in this country who have either participated in, or rallied for “incestuous marriage” have identified as “heterosexual”! The same goes for those who practice, or wish to legalize “polygamy”! It should also be stated that almost EVERY study done EVERYWHERE in the United States for the last 20 plus years of CONVICTED CHILD MOLESTERS, or those who practice “pedophilia”, over 70 percent have identified as “heterosexual” males!
    “Protect Marriage” is ridiculous! Are you “protecting” the “traditional marriage” which statistically speaking, ends in DIVORCE within the first THREE YEARS?
    So in essence, “yes on 8″ supporters want to retain the right to file frivolous marriages with the state of California to “only between a man and a woman”?
    And for the record: there is NO “homosexual agenda”! Gay people have no desire to convert heterosexuals to homosexuality! Is there a “heterosexual agenda”? It appears so. Do the research! Heterosexuals are the ones attempting to get gay people to “convert” to their “lifestyle choice”, not the homosexuals attempting to get the heterosexuals to convert to homosexuality!
    Furthermore, the ignorant statements about homosexuality being a “lifestyle choice” and “their choice to be gay” and simply stupid! When did the heterosexuals wake up and make a decision to be “heterosexual” Who here honestly actually said to them “should I be straight or gay”? If homosexuality is a choice, then by logical deduction, so is heterosexuality.
    So are the “no on 8″ supporters attempting to force California to be a “heterosexual” state? It appears so!
    Why do the heterosexual people constantly attempt to force their lifestyle choices on the gay people? If it is a proven fact (check with the medical, psychological and law enforcement communities) that the majority of child molesters are “heterosexual” why do people feel comfortable leaving their children alone with people who have such a high probability of being a child predator? If the divorce rate (check the statistics in ANY family law court) is so high, why on earth would people want to not only defend this practice, but teach their children it is “moral” to grow up, file multiple “marriages” and then file multiple “divorces”? How is that moral?
    Get over it people! Your fear of gay people is totally unwarranted! It is the gay people (who have been historically bashed, beaten up, threatened, slandered, torted, mutilated, maimed, killed, shamed, and discriminated against who should be afraid! The heterosexuals have the proven history of doing these shameful things against homosexuals for years! Not the homosexuals doing it to the heterosexuals! (Reference the holocaust, “witch burning”, stonewall, Matthew Sheppard, and countless other historical “hate crimes”!
    Maybe, just maybe, we are sick and tired of it all, much like the other minorities finally got sick of it all, like the black people, Japanese, Jewish, etc.!
    Hatred and discrimination is a terrible thing to “teach your children”!
    P.S. Those of you who are inevitably going to discount and disregard what I have said might want to research the points I have brought up. And if you want to comment back, fine as long as it is intelligent and not “gay bashing” because that would do nothing more than prove the points I have brought up!
    Proposition 8 was written specifically to propagate further discrimination against specifically gay folks based solely on their sexual orientation! Discrimination is against the US Constitution as well as separation of church and state! Please stop using the name of “GOD” and “JESUS” to bash people because they are different. NOWHERE in the bible does it say to treat your neighbor with such prejudice! In fact, it is a COMMANDMENT to “love thy neighbor”.
    Hate is NOT a HEALTHY value to be teaching children! Didn’t we learn from the mistakes of Hitler?
    NO ON PROP 8!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://ravagedfaces.com/ Cain Hamm

    Have you read proposition 8? It is a strange construct for an English sentence.

    You have to be very careful when writing constitutional language. If they are defining Marriage in one sentence, then they haven’t excluded incenst, for example.

    Will Judges be compelled, to legalize incest. (as http://RavagedFaces.com/ suggests) based on that wording? I’d be very afraid to vote YES on this one.

  • http://ravagedfaces.com/ Cain Hamm

    My Church performs same-sex weddings. So the folks who say “Vote Yes for religious Freedom” are against MY religious freedom. (And they’re pro-incest, too!)

  • http://www.coyoteyip.com Richard Rinehart

    Thanks very much Prof. Lessig. We met last year at a dinner/debate at Jane’s in Berkeley with Pam Samuelson. I was the moderator. I’m now a happily married gay guy, and I very much appreciate your support.

    Now, on to the topic at hand. I don’t think that Prop 8 needs to divide liberals and conservatives or people from different religious backgrounds. I think if one reasons it out rationally, voting no on prop. 8 just makes sense from all sides, from fiscal conservatives to constitutional literalists to civil rights supporters.

    Vote NO on Prop. 8 because:

    - Prop 8 Takes Away Existing Rights. In June 2008, along with Mass. and later Conn. (and much of Europe and Canada), CA Supreme court affirmed the right to marry whom one wants. Since then, thousands of gay folk have married, and guess what? Society did not crumble. Heterosexual marriage remains safe and sound. Prop 8 would take away rights from thousands and destroy marriages.
    - Economics. CNBC stated that gay marriages bring in an additional $228 million to public funds in CA annually, and the Congressional budget office estimates that to be $1 billion nationally. At a time when CA and the US are cutting funding for schools and medicare, this new free income won’t cost other taxpayers a cent and helps our bottom line.
    - Civil Rights. Until 1967 blacks and whites could not marry each other in many states. In 1967 the US Supreme Court overturned those laws (a court reviewing laws, sound familiar?), affirming marriage as a civil rights issue, “Marriage is one of the ‘basic civil rights of man’”. Civil rights should not be granted to some segments of society and denied others.
    - Religious Rights. The very first of the American Bill of Rights confirms freedom of religion. No church would ever be forced to perform a gay marriage if they didn’t want to. But those that want to, can; the United Church of Christ, Presbytarian Church, Unitarian Universalist Assoc., Reform Judaism, and others allow same-sex marriage. Allow everyone their right to choose to worship in their own way; that’s American.

  • http://yumyumcafe.blogspot.com/ lilalia

    Thank you Mr Lessig for the intelligent, but personal argument. Living in a country that allows same sex marriages, has allowed family and friends to celebrate the loving unions of such couples you so aptly describe.

  • http://orcid.net Ciarán

    Thanks for this excellent piece: I’m always perplexed at the notion that gay couples (and single people of every orientation) ought to continue subsidising straight couples through the tax codes.
    If this was about marriage wouldn’t the antis be arguing that the state should get out of the institution of marriage business altogether? There may be grounds for subsidising child-rearing or adjusting inheritance taxes to allow for all long-term cohabitation arrangements (gay, straight, siblings, parents and adult children, whatever), but in general the licensing of relationships should be left to private entities like churches. And those clubs could exclude as their tastes saw fit.
    Anyway, maybe I’m over-thinking this, but it would seem to me that the antis choosing simply to exclude exposes their position as being about the exclusion, not about the institution.

  • http://www.arkansawyer.com/wordpress John A Arkansawyer

    Wow. “paid for by nobody, save my kids, who would otherwise have had a couple more hours to play with me…”

    Children change everything, don’t they? My daughter is just a hair older than your oldest boy, and the fact of her existence has become the central fact of my life.

    Here in Arkansas, we’re facing a similar fight, against Proposition 1, which bans cohabiting people from being foster or adoptive parents. It’s a tacitly anti-gay proposal, initiated after our state courts struck down a specifically anti-gay provision. Its reach is considerably greater, as all unmarried couples (and possibly single people–the language is not clear on this point) would be denied the ability to be foster or or adoptive parents.

    This proposal would always have offended me, on the simple basis of justice and equality and all that, but now, it drastically restricts the number of our friends and relatives who could take in Quincy if something happened to my wife and myself. That makes this personal in a way oppressive laws, even those laws which affected me directly, seldom were before.

    Now I think it’s time to get my daughter off to school. I’m late doing so, dammit.

  • Craig Olson

    Proposition 8 is not just a civil rights issue. It is a bona fide moral issue. The rights of both sides must be protected. To deny that this is an issue of moral beliefs is blatantly dishonest.
    Opponents of proposition 8 would want us to believe that their purpose is to promote tolerance and protect rights. Their real goal is to remove any distinction between gay marriage and traditional marriage, using the law to indoctrinate the next generation with their moral view. How does this protect the rights of the millions who honestly believe that same-sex marriage is NOT the moral equivalent of traditional marriage at all, and is harmful to our society.
    Proposition 8 PROTECTS rights. It simply restores a distinction that allows respectful debate on a moral issue. To use the law to force only one view, as opponents would desire, is not tolerance.

  • Wes

    Imagine that you select people at random and ask them to write a small computer program (maybe a little calendar to keep track of birthdays or a small calculator to balance your checkbook). First, most people simply won’t want to do it. Second, even if you were to offer them sufficient incentive (say, a million dollars), most people would have a very difficult time writing the little computer program.

    Suppose instead that you select people at random and ask them to get along with each other. Most people wouldn’t want to do it and, even with adequate incentive, would have a very difficult time. That is, as with computer programming, very few people have either the skill or inclination to effectively manage interpersonal relationships. To put it another way, most people have serious psychological issues lurking beneath the surface.

    There are certain branches of modern psychology that have dispensed with the ideology and abstract philosophy and taken a factual observation based (scientific) approach to the question of how to manage interpersonal relationships (and emotions, generally). This approach has yielded some important progress. While it may seem cliche, one of the key findings is the importance of communication: specifically, certain strategies for effective communication.

    So, what does this have to do with gay marriage?

    Well, many people in the USA would claim that there is some kind of “God” entity that is opposed to gay marriage (and in favor of proposition 8, specifically). The problem is that this God entity is not employing effective communication strategies (as worked out by certain branches of modern psychology). If there is a God entity and if it does actually want people to vote yes on proposition 8 then, at the very least, it should come down and engage in some panel discussions in which it advocates its particular viewpoint. At the very least, it should post a video blog (along the lines of the very nice video posted above by Lawrence Lessig) in which it lays out its key arguments.

    Some people would argue that the “bible” is the God entity’s attempt at communication but the bible falls far short of being effective communications by any reasonable standard of modern psychology. First, the bible does not specifically take a stance on proposition 8. Second, and more fundamentally, both the old and new testament contain opinions that, taken literally, are abhorrent by the standard of modern ethics. Just to give one example, there is the whole business about “plucking out” eyes in the new testament. If one does not take the bible literally, then one is left with a jumble of metaphors that are too vague to be, even remotely, considered to be effective communication.

    So, at the end of the day, one has to make a decision about gay marriage based on either tradition and culture, generally, or on factual observation. Tradition and culture, generally, have a long history of being wrong (an obvious and relevant example here is inter-racial marriage). That leaves factual observation.

    Based on factual observation, does gay marriage harm society? Not as far as I can tell. As far as I can tell, gay marriage actually has substantial benefits. Therefore, proposition 8 is wrong.

  • Sneeje

    @Wes

    Ummm… your definition of “factual observation” and mine are very different. You use the word fact, but offer none. Even though I agree with your final statement, your evidence supporting it is opinion not factual observation.

  • Dave Green

    Jeff Harmon writes: “The answer lies in procreation—the primary responsibility of a family.”

    Mr. Harmon, as a father of two in a traditional family, I cannot disagree more with your statement.

    The answer lies in the encouragement and protection of family. Family is not exclusive to heterosexual couples, anymore than it is exclusive to heterosexual couples that naturally procreate.

    Creation of family occurs when two people join together with the intention of raising, adopting, creating (via the myriad of choices now available), and nurturing children.

    Regardless of their sexual orientation.

    My wife and I are not deserving of protected status because we chose and were able to have children in a traditional way. Nor are same sex couples less deserving because they chose to establish their family in a non-traditional way.

    This is about equal protection. Not procreation.

  • http://brokencorset.com Sara Callow

    Thanks for the video, it was great. It is amazing how upended the proponents of Yes on 8 are. Protection of their religious rights requires a “no” vote… to undermine the First Amendment’s religious freedoms will undermine their own as well.

    I’ve also heard a lot of talk about respect and acceptance from Yes on 8 – saying theirs is not a campaign against homosexuals, simply in favor of traditional marriage… Yet separate but equal inherently isn’t. And they certainly don’t demonstrate respect and acceptance of homosexuals as EQUALS by promoting a separate but equal doctrine.

    Plus – I’m just confused. How is their God, who supposedly is against gay marriage, going to be compelled by the laws of California to bless gay unions? Where is the power in that diety?

    And the distortion of the truth regarding the education of children is alarming and troublesome to say the least. I guess if you can’t make your case in facts, you just lie.

  • G. G.

    Sometimes all one needs to do is observe the behavior of the opposing sides of an issue to discern where truth and right are. In my area, the opponents to Proposition 8 (Traditional Marriage) have repeatedly stolen “Yes on Proposition 8″ signs from neighborhoods. Cars with “Yes on 8” bumper stickers have been keyed and spray-painted. Last Saturday, a group of Yes on 8 families stood on a street corner with Yes on 8 signs. The vast majority of people honked their horns, made thumbs-up gestures, or applauded as their vehicles passed through the intersection. While the families stood at the corner, two No on 8 supporters crossed the street and positioned themselves directly in front of the Yes on 8 supporters, trying to provoke a confrontation. When the Yes on 8 families failed to react, the two individuals left. When there were vehicles passing through with No on 8 supporters, most of them shouted obscenities and made obscene gestures at the Yes on 8 supporters. One woman actually screamed (in front of her own child) “Jesus loves everyone you f#&$ing b$tch!!!.”

    I’ve seen and heard enough to make my decision. It is clear that the gay activist have no respect for the freedoms (freedom of speech) of those who oppose them on Proposition 8, yet they demand tolerance from all.

    What about the rights of children and parents? Aren’t they more important than lifestyle choices? No matter how they try to package it, judges, politicians, and teachers can not rationalize that homosexuality and same sex marriage is “normal” behavior. Homosexuality is not “normal”, it’s contrary to nature. The union of a male and a female is the only means of procreation. Neither a man and a man, nor a woman and a woman can produce a child. While I believe we should all be tolerant and accepting of people’s lifestyle choices, I draw the line when gay activist deceitfully and covertly try to indoctrinate our children and our society that gay marriage is normal and the same as the marriage between a man and a woman. What’s next, allowing marriage between adults and children?

  • LA

    To answer your question G.G., NO gay people do not want to marry children. Or animals. Or any “one” or “thing” that isn’t a consenting adult with whom they love and loves them back.

  • Wes

    Sneeje: Ummm… your definition of “factual observation” and mine are very different. You use the word fact, but offer none. Even though I agree with your final statement, your evidence supporting it is opinion not factual observation.

    Exactly. It is my opinion that an analysis based on factual observation would conclude that gay marriage is beneficial to society. I did not mean to imply, however, that there is a simple proof, based on factual observation, that gay marriage is beneficial. My opinion is that one could easily devote a lifetime to a factual observation based (scientific) study of the effects of gay marriage on society and that the conclusion would be that the effects are extremely complex but generally beneficial.

    Strictly speaking, it’s not clear that any analysis, even a fact based analysis, can demonstrate that life has a fundamental purpose. That is, it is likely that life has no purpose and that, at the most fundamental level, notions of “beneficial” and “harmful” are meaningless.

    What one can do, though, is to observe that people have emotions. People have pleasant feelings and unpleasant feelings. People feel good and people feel bad. People have things they want and things they don’t want. One can then, as a practical matter, try to structure a society so that people feel good and get what they want – even though there is no fundamental reason why people should feel good or get what they want.

    An immediate problem is that sometimes people want things that are mutually exclusive. A white person wants a black person to ride at the back of the bus but the black person wants to ride at the front of the bus. The principle of individual freedom says that the person who is most affected (in this case, the black person) should be the person that has the most input into the final decision (in this case, the black person should get to decide whether to ride at the back of the bus).

    Applying an “individual freedom” analysis to gay marriage, gay people are most affected by whether they get married so they should be the ones to make that decision – particularly, the people getting married (gay or not) should, in general, be making the decision of whether to get married.

    There is also a purely experimental approach to looking at the effects of gay marriage on society. One could for example, compare societies that allow gay marriage to societies that do not. While a purely experimental approach can show that allowing gay marriage does not immediately cause the total collapse of a society that allows it, more subtle effects are difficult to distinguish. For example, a society that allows gay marriage may be more prosperous but that may be because a society that allows gay marriage has a greater commitment to individual freedom which allows greater economic innovation.

    Anyway, a fact based analysis is very difficult but, in my opinion, it is the right analysis and, in the end, such an analysis would favor allowing gay marriage.

  • Wes

    I seem to be posting a lot today but, while I’m at it, …

    G.G.: When there were vehicles passing through with No on 8 supporters, most of them shouted obscenities and made obscene gestures at the Yes on 8 supporters.

    I got the same thing back when I was demonstrating against the Iraq war. It is a bit of a puzzle how to demonstrate that you disagree strongly with someone while you drive past (often at high speed).

    The conclusion I came to was that “thumbs down” is the refined choice – but getting the appropriate thumb angle (for example, avoiding “thumbs sideways”) can be tricky without taking your eyes off the road to gauge thumb angle (particularly when you’re sticking your hand out the window and over the roof of your car for maximum effect). The “middle finger” is certainly an easier gesture to manage while driving.

    Also, as far as things to shout, complex arguments are difficult to shout during a high speed drive by so, again, obscenity becomes a matter of convenience.

    G.G.: What’s next, allowing marriage between adults and children?

    A related question is whether gay people should be treated like adults or like children (or, like humans or like animals, for that matter). Obviously, I favor treating gay adults like adult humans.

  • Mo

    Prop 8 is not about discrimination or denying people’s rights it is about legally defining the term “Marriage” as the recognized legal union between opposite sexes. That said I think that same sex couples should be afforded all the legal rights granted to opposite sex couples who are recognized as legally united or married.

    However I do not believe that redefining a term which has traditionally had a meaning referring to opposite sexes is the right way to go about this. Look this is an extreme example but Imagine back when the civil rights movement was happening. America ripe with discrimination everywhere, signs up – WHITES ONLY, No COLOREDS.

    Imagine if the great civil rights leaders of that time had decided to fight for their cause the way the gay and lesbian movement of today is doing so… We want to change the definition of the Term White to include all colors, sure that would have gotten the job done, but sounds ridiculous doesn’t it?

    I just don’t think this is the right way to go about this… and this is why I will be voting YES on 8.

    Stand up for your cause!; let people know, show who you are, and what you are and be proud!, don’t be swallowed up into an ambiguous term.

  • Catherine

    to Daryl, first of all, to make the assumption that I hate the gay community because I’m voting yes on 8 is a huge leap, untrue and I would ask where is your “evidence”. I have never said anyting derogatory or hateful about any gay person and have never heard any of the people I have worked with promoting this prop say anything derogatory or hateful. In fact, many of our signs have been ripped down by the NO side, which is against the law in that it takes away our freedom of speech(an example of how its our rights being trodden on, not the gay rights) One YES individual was punched in the face when he tried to retrieve his sighns, how hateful is that?! No my dear, the hate is coming from your side, not ours. As for your claim that religious people are trying to force their religion on the gay community is so obviously the opposite. You don’t see religious groups dragging gay couples into court trying to legally force them to accept religion. But there are many, many instances of gay couples dragging various religious groups into court and trying to force them into action against their religious beliefs. I know as you’re reading that last statement you’re saying to yourself, “That’s not true!” Because I’ve noticed that your side when faced with facts you don’t want to face immediately go into the “That’s not true!” mode. You need to go on line and do your research, there are many instances that have happened as I just described.

  • Daryl

    “Sometimes all one needs to do is observe the behavior of the opposing sides of an issue to discern where truth and right are.”

    Agreed… The “yes on 8″ people have been stealing signs everywhere, and this has been reported. Additionally, let’s take a brief, yet topical look at the claims and behaviors made by the “yes on 8″ campaign, shall we?

    “Gay marriage will be taught in our schools”….The California Superintendent of Public Schools has been very clear when he openly stated “Proposition 8 has absolutely nothing to do with schools or children, and using children for these ads is shameful”. His view is shared by the California Teacher’s Association.

    It is a fact, that the children who appear in these ads, have been, according to the actual parents of these children “exploited and I demand that the yes on 8 campaign take down these images of my children immediately! I did not give them any permission to use my child’s images and video for anything”! And have in fact, written a letter to the Sacramento Chronical asking that they do the same and also take legal action against the “yes on 8 campaign”.

    The leaders of the “yes on 8 campaign” are currently under investigation by the US Government for suspicion of misuse and illegal use of campaign funds! They are using your donations to actually pay themselves over $200,000.00 a year a piece to “make your voice heard” by the way!

    Cruise “youtube” and you will find videos of “yes on 8″ campaign supporters harassing and even physically assaulting the “no on 8″ supporters, who did nothing to provoke them except oppose their view point. The “yes on 8″ campaign supporters went out of their way to approach the “no on 8″ supporters!

    Pretty much, each and every claim made by the “yes on 8″ campaign has been proven to be a lie and deceitful! And they are mainly doing this, according to their own blatant omission, because it is against their religious beliefs. Yet numerous organizations of the same religious beliefs have openly came out and supported “no on 8″ claiming the behavior of the “yes on 8″ campaign is against their religious beliefs, teachings, and practices!

    Just curious, since the bible actually states in Liviticus that it is “a sin to eat crustations” would you, along with the rest of the “religious” supporters of “yes on 8″ support a proposition to ban the sell of all shellfish in the United States? Or did you miss that part and love to go to “Red Lobster” with the rest of them after church and participate in group sinning?

    The laws of the US are clearly against forcing religious beliefs on anyone!

  • Franco

    The battle for free speech and conscience

    by Craig A. Huey

    Many voters who are for same-sex marriage—or don’t care either way—are joining forces with those who believe in protecting traditional marriage to vote “yes” on Proposition 8.

    Why? Because Proposition 8 restores individual freedom and protects free speech. A “no” vote destroys liberty, empowers judicial activists and creates a climate of lawsuits and coercion.

    What happened

    By a 4–3 decision, the California Supreme Court voted to force “same-sex marriage” on California. This decision overturned Proposition 22, which states that marriage is between a man and a woman only.

    In 2000, an overwhelming 61.4% of California voters passed Proposition 22. This court ruling overturning the California voters’ decision is history in the making.

    A civil right?

    Marriage is being “redefined” as a civil right; this new definition will radically change our society. That’s the problem—and that’s why gays, heterosexuals, Christians and Jews, Democrats and Republicans are joining together to vote “yes” on Proposition 8.

    No other political decision to change American society (as we’ve known it for more than 200 years) even comes close to this one. The three dissenting votes rightly pointed out that this is not a civil rights issue, it’s an issue of choice. The four judges who voted for “same-sex marriage” did so based on a distorted view of “civil liberties.” The four judges said, just as you can’t discriminate against people based on their race, you also can’t discriminate against people based on their “sexual orientation.”

    But choosing one’s personal sexual behavior isn’t the same as what defines one’s race.

    Confusion and danger

    Redesigning society based on this confusion—that a chosen sexual “orientation” is no different from the unchosen, unchangeable characteristic of race—is based on faulty and dangerous reasoning.

    There are some things we don’t choose. No one can choose his or her race or height—any more than he or she can choose any gene. Whom we enter into a relationship with, however, is voluntary—it’s a matter of free will. Homosexual behavior is a choice, not a civil right. Race is not a choice, and is a civil right.

    Why real rights are in danger

    Now, because of the court’s decision based on newly created “civil rights,” our religious liberty and freedom of speech are in danger. If Proposition 8 isn’t passed, watch for costly lawsuits to mount against churches if they don’t allow homosexual “weddings.”

    Last year in New Jersey, a lesbian couple sued the Methodist Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association after it refused, for religious reasons, to let the “couple” hold a ceremony on the camp’s property. The camp has lost part of its tax-exempt status and expects more court challenges.

    Stifling freedom of speech

    Watch out for more churches, religious organizations and pastors to grow increasingly reluctant to speak out against what they call the sin of homosexuality for fear of accusations of “hate speech,” “discrimination” and “violating civil rights.”

    Canadian Evangelical Pastor Stephen Boisson was recently banned from expressing his opposition to homosexuality, ordered to pay $5,000 for damages for “pain and suffering” and to apologize to a homosexual activist for writing in a newspaper it was wrong to teach 5- and 6-year-olds that homosexuality is acceptable behavior.

    Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family has to edit references to homosexuality out of his radio broadcasts in Canada so he doesn’t get prosecuted for “hate speech.”

    Stifling freedom of conscience

    Religious employees, Christian schools and bookstores, photographers, wedding-cake bakers, rental agencies and other businesses—all of them could be targets of ruinous lawsuits.

    In New Mexico, Elaine Huguenin, a professional wedding photographer, was fined and found guilty for not wanting to photograph a lesbian wedding.

    And just last month, the California Supreme Court found guilty two doctors in San Diego who refused to inseminate a lesbian woman. They referred her to another doctor. After she had the child, she sued, winning her “civil rights” case that would force the doctors to act against their own freedom of conscience. They will be potentially subjected to paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in attorney fees to the lesbian.

    Proposition 8 is easy. Whether you agree with same-sex marriage or not, Proposition 8 is needed to protect freedom of speech and freedom of conscience. Voting “no” on 8 is voting against freedom of religion and opening the door to lawsuits and harassment of those who disagree with homosexuality.

    Voting YES is protecting the American dream and stopping the erosion of liberty.

    Craig A. Huey
    craig@cdmginc.com

  • http://www.chrisfinke.com/ Christopher Finke

    I would vote against proposition 8, if only because the government should have no role in marriage at all. Marriage is a religious institution, not a political one.

  • G.G.

    Daryl:

    Have you even bothered to read California State Education Code Section 51933? Have you researched what has occurred in Massachusetts since same-sex marriage was legalized? Do you know who determines what is age appropriate subject matter for teaching in schools? Here’s a hint: It’s the same people who believe taking 5 year old to a lesbian wedding is a “teaching moment”. It’s the same people who send 5 year olds home with books promoting same sex marriage under the name of “diversity” without notifying parents. It’s the same people stop parents from protecting their young impressionable children from being exposed to age-inappropriate materials.

    You are just another misinformed reactionary who has been duped by the gay activists and think “YouTube” is the haven of all truth. And sorry to disappoint, but I don’t eat crustaceans. I don’t cheat on my wife and I don’t lie and steal either. Not even “No” on Prop 8 signs. I guess I’m just not progressive enough. I don’t know if you are married to another man, a woman, or whatever and I don’t care. What I do know is that if and when you have children, you will and should feel you should have the right to protect them from indoctrination by those who think they know what’s best for your children. If not, you have no business raising a child in this world.

  • G.G.

    From G.G. to Wes:

    I really don’t think it’s that difficult for “normal” people to get the right thumb angles. It was pretty definitive as to which directions I saw them point last Saturday. As far as the middle finger… it’s a gesture that says a lot including (1) please look at me, I am a rude and undisciplined moron, (2) I don’t have a rational argument so this is the best way I can express myself, (3) I don’t care if your 5 year old sees me, F— her too!, and (4) I support Proposition 1 (if there is one).

    Gays should be treated as adults. But that does not change the fact that homosexuality and gay marriage is not normal and should not be taught to our children as such.

  • Glenn

    To: Jeffrey Harmon, Craig Olsen, Mo, Catherine, G.G., and Craig Huey…

    Thanks so much for you comments. It’s good people like you that give me hope in a country where the decline of morality and integrity is viewed as progress by those who would seek to destroy them.

  • WRB

    Craig Huey’s comment is notable because virtually all his arguments are the same arguments used against interracial marriage and other civil rights in our not-so-distant past. Except the ones that are just patently silly like Dobson has to move to Canada so he won’t be prosecuted for “hate speech.”

    He of course attempts to insulate these arguments from the obvious parallels with with the sophistry that was used to deny civil rights to black people for so many years. This he does by simply asserting:

    “But choosing one’s personal sexual behavior isn’t the same as what defines one’s race.”

    Sadly, like so many of the claims about racial inferiority and other “facts” used to oppose civil rights and equality for black people, this statement is simply wrong and the product of nothing but ignorance and a rather amazing lack of empathy. As so many have pointed out, it makes absolutely no sense to state that someone chooses his/her sexual orientation (or to claim that it’s merely “behavior”) when it’s counter to almost every human being’s actual experience — both homosexual and heterosexual. Perhaps Mr. Huey woke up one morning during adolescence and flipped a coin to decide whether to be heterosexual or homosexual, but that’s not the way it works for the vast majority of people.

    It truly saddens me that so many have learned nothing from the Civil Rights struggles that are so important to this nation’s history, or that they can simply rationalize those lessons away in an attempt to continue to stay atop a pecking order to which they have come to feel entitled.

  • Shika

    I’m voting yes on 8 for 3 reasons: 1. Freedom of speech; 2. Freedom on religion; and 3. Freedom of parents to teach their children their values. I have no problem with civil unions via domestic partnerships. Homosexual couples enjoy the same priviledges as heterosexual couples, under CA law. What I don’t like is the state considering the phrase, “traditional marriage” a hate term. I also don’t like the fact that churches currently fear law suits for not performing same sex marriages. A same sex couple wanted to get married in San Francisco at a Catholic church because of its location. When the church refused, the couple sued. The church won its case, but why should it have to pay money to defend itself from such suits? In MA the church had to close its adoption agency for the same reason (after same sex marriage was legalized). Some argue that they could fight, but again why should they have to pay the court costs? Even if religious organizations win the court battles, at some point public funds will be withdrawn (since the state cannot support discriminatory organizations). Also, recently a same sex couple went to a fertility specialist. The specialist refused to perform in vitro fertilization, but referred the couple to another specialist who would perform the procedure. The couple sued and won. It was not a life-threatening condition. It was elective… so they should have gone to the other physician. Finally, I don’t think sexual orientation should be discussed in the classroom. It’s something between the parents and their children. If schools didn’t have the ability to teach such things without parental consent, that would be one thing; but to not have to inform parents is wrong. The irony is that the gay community wants tolerance, and yet they are not showing tolerance. Anyone who disagrees with their lifestyle is considered a bigot. I often hear disparaging remarks about Christians. Sexual orientation is part of a person, and not the complete person. Honestly, I say leave it at home.

  • David

    PHOTOGRAPHY DUO MARKUS KLINKO & INDRANI JOIN THE NATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD OF MARRIAGE EQUALITY USA
    http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=130070193&blogID=444822102

  • http://catamorphism.org Tim Chevalier

    @Jeffrey Harmon:

    If the state legalizes interracial marriage, then suddenly marriage changes from a protected belief of a small minority, to the false impression that the state (which is an extension of the people) believes that interracial relationships are morally acceptable.

    As individuals, law-abiding blacks should be entitled to every inalienable right held by any white; but heteroracial couples no longer hold an equal stance to the homogeneity of a homoracial relationship. The answer lies in racial purity: the primary responsibility of a family.

    The interracial agenda wants to redefine marriage as simply commitment, honesty, affection, and warmth between two loving individuals. If so then it simply becomes an equal protection issue and the interracial couple argues they are being discriminated against for a relationship they claim holds equal commitment and value to the homoracial relationship. This argument breaks down because it ignores posterity and racial purity. Racially pure children are what differentiate the marriage contract from all other consensual adult arrangements. The state has always had a keen interest in the bearing and rearing of pure, white children. Indeed that is why the state got in the business of registering and recognizing marriage in the first place.

    The point, both legally and historically, the interracial family can ONLY exist as a product of government policy and modern science, and a dependence on the homoracial family. It is very clear that interracial couples cannot procreate in order to produce racially pure children. The ability of white couples to produce white children is, by contrast, perfectly natural, and dates back to the start of recorded history. The natural family would continue whether the government or science became involved or not. Thus, we see that a heteroracial relationship is not naturally equal to a homoracial relationship.

    The Declaration of Independence proclaims that we are endowed with unalienable rights, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. John Locke, called this “natural law”. Natural law is not a creation or product of the state, but was to be protected by the state as these are the natural rights of all men inseparably connected to being human. Interracial couples may argue that they are in the pursuit of liberty and happiness, yet there is no logical means by which they are naturally in the pursuit of life. Indeed we may argue that the interracial-marriage movement, by its very nature, is a movement in pursuit of death, its own extinction, for without the intervention of the state and modern science, interracial relationsips results in the termination of the white race. Thus, from the perspective of both science and state we can see that the union of white man with white woman, with their resulting pure children compared to the mixed union, are polar opposites both in origin and fruit.

    What about couples who are infertile? Many married whites choose not to have children, and others cannot because of medical problems or physical handicaps. But interracial couples fought furiously to convince the American Psychiatric Association to remove intteracial attraction from their books as a “disorder”, or medical problem. The majority of the United States will now agree that interracial attraction is not a medical problem or disorder. Even in perfect medical condition, a mixed-race couple cannot produce a pure, white child without the help of a third party. Therefore heteroracial relationships and homoracial relationships are inherently, and naturally, unequal. Blacks should NOT shunned because of their beliefs and tendencies. Nor does this fact infringe on their God given rights. The argument is that the two relationships are very different from one another and for that reason they should be defined differently.

  • WRB

    Shika simply repeats the arguments that Huey made, which are wrong now for all the reasons they were wrong when they were used against interracial marriage. S/he then goes on to claim that a bunch of lawsuits were filed against churches and other institutions that refused equal treatment to gay couples. I can find no actual reference to any such cases and s/he provides none. Just lists a bunch of anonymous cases with no names or details. I might well say that a bunch of homophobes sued me for being gay and why should I have to defend myself. True? Who knows. But apparently Shika thinks s/he can just say it and no one will care whether any of it is actually true or not.

    Moreover, what do these supposed lawsuits have to do with taking marriage rights away from same-sex couples? If someone wants to sue for discrimination, they can do that regardless of how marriage is defined…and if the case has no merit (e.g. as regards religious beliefs) it’ll get thrown out as in one of Shika’s phantom examples. Discrimination laws are already on the books and not affected by whether on not same-sex couples can marry.

    Finally, one can again go back in history and look at the ban on interracial marriage which the courts overturned some 60 years ago in California (and later in the whole nation) and debunk all of Shika’s assertions. Was there a rash of lawsuits? No. Did churches who wanted to discriminate suffer? No. Were people not allowed to believe in racism or were they banned from saying racist things? No. It’s all just made-up scary stories to frighten those who can’t be bothered with the facts. Timely, I suppose, since Halloween is around the corner, but not an argument that thoughtful people can take seriously.

  • Magnus Lee

    A lot of great points in here. My latest gripe with Prop 8 is how it is being sold and marketed to people as somehow tainting the children and our education system. By the way, there is an interesting debate about the issue going on here: http://www.cruxlux.com/debate/2245/californians_should_vote_yes_on_prop_8
    Really puts the argument head to head.

  • Jared

    Well-written article. The NY Times came out with a pretty good article about the issues as well.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/27/us/27right.html?_r=3&pagewanted=1&em&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

  • Christie

    @hans – I am an atheist. Should I not be allowed to marry, only be granted “civil union?” Should I not be allowed to have a “husband,” only a “partner?”

  • Katie Christmann

    I believe this is a very strong, thought out argument. How does choosing who you want to marry weaken marriage, even if it is a human being of your same sexual orientation? I agree with this argument, in that divorce weakens marriage, not homosexuals. In his statement he makes a comparison about banning divorce is like banning same sex marriages. It’s legal for people to get divorces and re-marry, so does that mean we should be able to ban divorce, if we can ban same sex marriages? In your opinion is this a strong argument for why Californians should ban proposal eight on November 4th?

  • Justin

    I voted no on Prop 8 because I see this as a threat to individual liberty as granted under the Constitution. I personally disagree with the lifestyle, however our Constitution restricts another’s agenda or the government from interfering with our personal liberties.

    That being said, I am concerned that those who will vote no on Prop 8, are the same people who in another situation will vote to restrict other peronsal liberties they may not agree with. For example, many of the most outspoken opponents opposing Prop 8 are the same who favor restricting my right to own a firearm, a clear right granted under the Constitution, favor increased government regulation, government spending and a welfare state, diminishing private property rights to benefit “the state”, etc. Most likely, those who vote no on Prop 8 will also vote yes on Prop 2.

    I fnd this extremely hypocrtical. I see a tred in people’s world view today and especially in politcal party platforms. People are more interested in protecting the things they agree with and therefore deem these activities as protecting freedom, when, in reality, both polar groups favor restricting personal liberty and freedom. In the end, policies may be drastically different, but reasoning and justifications are the same.

    If we say that we should not impose our will on others, than truly fight for personal liberty and freedom, not only the things you agree with. It’s time we stand up for freedom! Having the blessing of liberty and freedom is not always easy nor does it mean equal outcomes. We have the freedom to succeed and the freedom to fail. I hope this year when you vote, you vote for what’s right that protect’s personal liberty, not what you deem should be free.

  • Bio Teacher

    As a Mormon Educator in California I find it extremely interesting that so many individuals find that they are justified by calling people who are demonstrating their civil right to pass legislation as bigoted. I have taught several homosexual students over the years and several continue to come by and visit or give me a hung when I see them around town. They all know I am Mormon and that I am very religious but they also know that I love and care about them as well. I treat all my students the same, whether they are homosexual, drug addicted, over sexed, neglected, on parole, abused, self injuring or just plain normal. Just because I want my religious freedom protected does not mean that I am intolerant of others. When I was younger marriage was a term only given to a union performed in a church, if you were “married” anywhere else it was called a civil union. Religious rights must be protected and marriage is a term established with religious connections. Churches back east have already been challenged in the courts regarding their stand against performing same sex marriage. Prop 8 is not hate but those who stand against it have done nothing but spew hate. We are not bigots. If anyone of you have taken just a few minutes to learn of how our ancestors suffered to ensure these rights, you might understand. It is truly sad that up until 1986, it was legal to kill a person just because they were Mormon in Missouri. Sadly we live in a time where the separation of church and state is blurred and open to interpretation. Prop 8 is to protect religious freedom, instead of name calling, vandalism, and venom, why don’t you propose your own legislation?

  • camellia

    I must say that I’m doing research on prop 8 and if it wasn’t from this I wouldn’t know anything about this or if it was going on I’m a 21year old lesbian I have been with my girlfriend for 5 years now and we are thinking about having a family and one day getting married.

    As I read every comment on this subject I have came to a conclusion with agreeing with Daryl no on prop 8 I feel as it will take away everyting from gay people. I mean us gay people are people to just because we not dating the opposite doesn’t make us different what anybody do in bed is thier business and not anyone else I mean some straight couples have threesome with men or women or have sex parties and end up doing thier same sex but you all try to keep that in the dark closet do we judge you no so why judge us.

    We all have to get up and go to school or work pay bills and taxes so how are we different again.

    we are not so stop acting as if we are. I get really upset knowing that they are people who get divorce every other year and marry all the time for all the wrong reasons the government shouldn’t stop anybody’s love of one another.

    and for the record there is not a such thing as traditonal marriage straight couples could give a damn

  • Robert Gardner

    @WRB:

    You call Shika’s references to lawsuits “phantom” and say you were unable to find references to these lawsuits. I found many references to these and similar lawsuits with just a little bit of searching (all on sites I’ve never visited before). For example, here’s an article about the Catholic church abandoning adoption in MA: http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/012/191kgwgh.asp

    Here’s an article about a GA counselor who was fired after being sued for declining to treat a same-sex relationship issue: http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/jul/08071717.html

    Here an article from the other side of the lawsuit fence — parents in MA bringing suit because they claim their children are being indoctrinated in school about homosexual lifestyles: http://culturecampaign.blogspot.com/2008/06/parent-david-parker-petitions-us.html

    Here’s an article (with many reference links) written by a MA resident detailing what was been happening there, in his view: http://www.massresistance.org/docs/marriage/effects_of_ssm.html

    This is what worries me about the CA supreme court’s decision to overturn the will of the people and somehow find a new “right” in the constitution to same-sex marriage. I worry that this new “right” will be used to force those of us in disagreement with this lifestyle not just to accept it (as most have already done) but to embrace it.

  • Remi

    @Franco, Craig, WRB and G.G., and to all people on both sides

    On how both sides are right and wrong at the same time.

    Sad to read that so many of you still believe that sexual orientation is a choice and/or a behavior. What’s so unnatural about being born gay? Homosexuality happens to a minority of populations, whether we’re talking human or animal populations. Homosexuality always existed and always will. There is more and more biological evidence on how the brain functions differently between an heterosexual person and an homosexual person. I strongly believe sexual orientation is a trait you’re born with, and I don’t know any gay person who would remember a day when he/she made a decision on to what gender he/she was going to be attracted to. If a small minority of people has frackles, does that make frackles unnatural? Because frackles and skin color are clearly visible, but the inside of the brain is not, does that disqualify the brain? Sad to read also about all the hatred on both sides, the signs being stolen, all the lies being told… Look, if this issue is not resolved on this election, I have not doubt that it will come back again and again, and seeing the way mentalities evolve, same-sex marriages will become a reality within another generation or so. One just have to look at other countries that have legalized some sort of gay marriage to realize that they are not doing any worse, and that traditional marriages are not disappearing as a result. I understand many of the points of the “yes on 8″ campaign, and if marriage is most of all a sacred religious practice, then I have nothing against renaming the civil counterpart something else, call it civil union, whatever. Each and every religion has the right to choose who they can or cannot marry based on their belief. However, as far as the civil marriage/union is concerned, there should be no distinction on how you call it whether it is for a straight or a same-sex couple. If one make such a distinction, one discriminate against a minority who under the Constitution deserves the same rights. Ideally, proposition 8 should rather read like “to create a distinction between civil and religious marriage, in order to afford same-sex couples the same rights of civil marriage under the law, and in order to preserve religious freedom to perform religious marriages according to their traditional practices and beliefs.” The problem, however, seems to be two-fold. First, it appears that there is a reluctance on the most religious side of the spectrum to completely separate Church and State. Church has been part of my life for many years, and I got a lot of good things out of it. Willingly or not however, the Church has been pushing to have its traditional view of marriage fit that of civil marriage. Since no line has ever been drawn, the perception of marriage, civil or not, in our Society, is that of a traditional marriage. So, on either side of the confrontation, we have all kind of arguments on whether which of “traditional marriage between a man and a woman”, and “equal rights for all” trumps the other. These two are absolutely compatible if you believe that one can draw a line on how far the Church can go on determining how City Hall should perform their marriages. In the country I am originally from, ceremonies are performed in both the City Hall AND the Church (or just at the City Hall, if you do not have religious beliefs). Religious marriages are sanctioned by God through an anointed representant, the priest. The State should have no authority to tell the Church who they should or should not marry, and that’s what the “yes on 8″ people want. On the other side, the Church should have no authority in the matter of giving or taking away rights of all loving relationships to equal treatment under the law, which include having the stability and protection that (civil) marriage confers. In contrast, what is not fair is having an heterosexual majority having both civil and religious marriage, and a minority having a mere civil union, with perhaps the same rights under the State law, but absolutely not the same rights under Federal laws! Sure, not passing proposition 8 would not correct this, but it is certainly a good step forward. Now, as for the second problem, I have to get back to my first point on sexual orientation. Just ask yourself honestly whether you believe sexual orientation is a choice being made at some point in life. If you are heterosexual, when did you realize you prefer a person of the opposite sex? Are you attracted to a person of the opposite sex just because you feel you need to procreate? Or are you just naturally attracted to that person, no matter what? If so, what makes your attraction more natural than that of a homosexual person just because you are in the majority? Now if you were homosexual, why would you “choose” to live such a “lifestyle” (as some people like to call it)? What benefit would you get in choosing to be gay? What’s attractive about living a life of lies (if you are in the closet) or a life of discrimination, humiliation and so on (if you are unfortunate to live in a not so tolerant society)? Being able to get multiple partners? What a stereotype. There is no evidence that an heterosexual relationship is any stronger or involve more love than a same-sex relationship. What on earth is it that a person would choose to be attracted to the same gender? Can someone tell me, I am very curious… I’ll tell you where the problem is. If everyone came to admit that homosexuality is not a choice, then it can’t be a sin either! Ooops, then all those passages in the Bible would be wrong? I leave it to you to ponder. But remember, there is always a compromised, but there is never a good place for hatred, whether you call the other one a “bigot” or a “gay activist”. If you read to the end, thank you. And by the way, I will not vote either way.

  • Gerry

    If I chose only to look at Proposition 8 on the surface, I too could conclude that it is anti-gay and discriminatory. However, it is not that simple. People need to stop the lies, deceit, and hidden agendas and focus on facts.

    FACT: Whether you believe in God or not, nether God (for believers) nor nature (for atheists and agnostics) designed the human race, or any other species, to procreate and sustain itself in anything other than a male-female union. Homosexuality is not “normal” human behavior no matter how it is packaged.

    FACT: “Marriage” is not simply a word that can arbitrarily redefined. Marriage is an institution and tradition founded in religious roots that for thousands of years has stood for and been embraced by humankind as the union of a man and a woman.

    FACT: For those who try to use the “Jesus loves everyone” argument, I could not agree more. However, Jesus taught that we should love the sinner, and not the sin. As a society, I believe we should be tolerant of others irrespective of sexual orientation. That does not mean however that we must abandon our religious beliefs and agree that their lifestyles are morally right.

    FACT: The State Superintendant of Education has lied to the voters of California. I have read the California State Education Code and it clearly states that marriage is to be taught in the public schools using age-appropriate materials. If Proposition 8 fails to pass, it will be mandatory that same-sex marriage be included in such instruction. Who determines what is “age-appropriate”? The school districts! Parents have no say in the matter. Issues of sexual orientation and marriage (just like religion) should be taught in the home, not in the public schools. (I wish there was as much energy focused on improving the poor academic performance of our schools as there has been on this issue).

    The State already recognizes domestic partnerships and individuals in such unions have all of the same basic rights as a man and a woman have by virtue of a marriage. Therefore, I ask myself, what the issue really is here when you look below the surface. By add the pieces together, it is easy to conclude that the gay activists are pushing for society to accept that same-sex marriage is “normal” and the same as the union between a man and a woman and their need to indoctrinate our children with their views.

    This issue goes well beyond gay rights. It’s about religious freedom. It’s about separation of church and state. It’s about preserving traditional values. Please vote YES on Proposition 8.

  • Bob

    Gerry: Thank You! All your points are well stated. The fact is, that people who are against Prop 8 consistently turn to the “You hate gays” or “You are stupid” or “God is love” arguments, completely ignoring logic and basing their arguments on incorrect assumptions. This tends to happen when people argue for something that they REALLY REALLY WANT to be true, even though it is not.

    In truth, people who engage in homosexual activities are perverts (using the definition of perverted which means using something in a way that is against its natural purpose) who want to justify their base desires and take no responsibility for controlling their actions. While heterosexual marriage is currently far from perfect in our society, that is a witness that our societies morals have declined greatly, and is a different issue all together. Just because hetero couples have a high divorce rate, does not mean homosexuals should now get married. Besides, it is NOT true that homosexuality is good for society — STD’s and suicides are very high in this group.

    Prop 8 is not THE answer, but it is a step in the right direction.

  • Ed G.

    To Remi:

    While a feel very strongly about voting YES on Proposition 8, I wanted to thank you for your comments. It was well written and more objective than just about everything else I have been reading. I also appreciate the polite and tolerant tone of your writing.

    I, like many others, have a deep concern over the continuing decay of the values and principles of our communities, state, nation, and world and what future we are making for our children and grandchildren. Public debate is healthy and necessary, but to see the hatred and evil acts that people perpetrate against each other in the name of their cause has been disheartening. I have witnessed much of this in the past few weeks, even done in front of young children.

    Not to open another can of worms, but I can best express my concerns regarding where I’m afraid we are going as a society by making reference to another divisive issue. I still cannot come to grips with the fact that we, as a society, accept the killing of unborn children. What started as limited use of abortion has now become routine. Now we even condone “partial birth abortion” where the life of a fully developed and viable child is taken in a brutal manner. Where does it stop? We have desensitized ourselves to the point where we no longer can discern between right and wrong. This is all evil needs to take hold and conquer our social conscience. Gays (the minority) want to be heard and demand their rights, but what about the rights of children who cannot even be heard?

    So where do we draw the line with regard to the many issues underlying Proposition 8 (Gay rights, religious freedom, freedom of speech, parents rights, children’s rights, etc.)? What comes after mandating that churches must perform same-sex marriage and schools must teach that same-sex marriage is normal? Where does it stop? What will we say when the next group pushes for marriage between adults and children? You may think that this is ridiculous, but I’ll bet everything I own that our founding fathers would have thought the notion that we would be “legally” killing unborn children was ridiculous too!

  • RC White

    Last night my No on Prop 8 sign was stolen. Last week the anti-Americans stole my Obama sign and I replaced it. I’ll replace the No on Prop 8 one too. Too bad the anti-Americans don’t understand what America is about, things like ALL Americans have equal rights, like freedom of speech and the right to vote. Who is anti-American now Governor Palin?

  • WRB

    @Ed

    I want to add my thanks for a respectful and thoughtful tone and approach. Two things I would point out.

    First, it’s important to stick to the facts. Ed laments that churches will be mandated to perform same-sex marriages and schools mandated to teach that same-sex marriage is normal. Yet these are just falsehoods. Prop. 8 seeks to take away the rights of same-sex couples to marry. Defeating it has nothing to do with what goes on in churches that don’t believe in same sex marriage or in schools. In fact the CA Sup. Ct. went out of its way to point out that religious institutions will not be forced into anything. Again, I go back to interracial marriage, the ban on which was overturned 60 years ago in CA. Are our churches forced to marry interracial couples? No. Are schools teaching interracial marriages are “normal” (whatever that means)? No. Moreover, there’s nothing that mandates anything about teaching gay marriage, in fact CA law lets parents opt out of eduational programs like sex ed. that provide information about homosexuality (among other facts of human sexuality). So these, I’m afraid are just red herrings.

    Next, Ed raises the slippery slope argument: if we allow gay marriage then allowing pedophilia is inevitable. Leaving aside how offensive that is, it’s just a worn out fallacy. We allowed people to own shotguns and then handguns and then semi-automatic weapons etc. did we not? Does that mean we inevitably will have to allow them to own rocket-propelled grenades and tanks? No. We let people drive 65 miles per hour on the freeway, much faster than in times past. Does that mean we inevitably will have to allow them to drive 150mph? Obviously not.

    Ed’s main point is that he sees an eroding of certain moral values in allowing gay rights, abortion etc. That is certainly a legitimate judgment he is entitled to make. The real question is, to me, when it comes to these very tough and very PERSONAL moral/religious issues on which there is a great deal of uncertainty and disagreement, who should decide? The individual or the government? On these personal moral issues, is there a reasonable realm of privacy and freedom of religion (or freedom from religion) in which individuals and couples make their own decisions, or are their personal family & religious decisions left up to 51% of people who happen to vote? I think the founders answered these questions quite wisely, and measures like Prop. 8 are a serious assault on that wisdom.

  • Good Will

    Reported thefts of “Yes on Prop 8″ signs are portrayed by some as an apt metaphor for how Prop 8 proponents are trying to deny same-sex couples their civil rights of free expression and freedom of association by banning same-sex “marriage”.

    But homogamy can no more be construed as a civil right than jaywalking, breaking the speed limit, or driving on the wrong side of the road.

    Being able to sit on the same bus or drink from the same water fountain is a civil right. Homosexuals have always had the same right as others to marry someone of the opposite sex.

    What they want, however, is a new and different right. They don’t want to sit on the same bus or drink from the same water fountain. They want to hijack the bus and take it where it has never gone before – a dead end! They want to transform the community drinking fountain into something it was never intended to be — and use it for unnatural, unhealthy, and unholy purposes.

    Then they expect the rest of us to keep using the same fountain!

    Yuck!

    Vote “Yes” on Proposition 8!

  • Ed

    To: WRB

    Quoting you: “In fact the CA Sup. Ct. went out of its way to point out that religious institutions will not be forced into anything.”

    The California Superintendant of Schools has nothing to do with what happens or will happen with regard to the rights of religious institutions, so what is the relevance of his “opinion”?

    You say that none of this can happen, yet look at history. Look at what has happened in Massachusetts with the forced indoctrination of parents against the will and judgment of their parents? California is following the same pattern. Look at recent court cases, including the wedding photographer in New Mexico who refused to shoot a gay wedding based on her religious beliefs. The court ruled it discrimination and fined her. You don’t think that is an infringement on religious freedom and beliefs?

    I find that your argument about guns only supports the point I am trying to make. I believe that, just like same sex marriage, there should and needs to be a line draw, i.e. tighter gun controls. People should not be free to run around with semi-automatic weapons. However, since the courts and gun activists stretch the right to bear arms well beyond that which the founding fathers could have foreseen, we live in a society where unstable people and gangs run amuck killing innocent people. A line should have been drawn but we failed to do so because of “rights”. The same with abortion. Now, with partial birth abortion, a doctor can drive a stake through a baby’s brain and kill it during delivery. A line should have been drawn but we failed to out of “protection” of the mother’s rights (forget about the child’s).

    Regarding your statement “PERSONAL moral/religious issues on which there is a great deal of uncertainty and disagreement, who should decide? The individual or the government?”. The individual should be free to decide. That’s why I support Proposition 8. I will not have a judge, a teacher, a politician, or a gay activist force same-sex marriage indoctrination upon my child in direct opposition of my religious beliefs.

  • Daryl

    I agree with all of you who want to “protect religious freedom” by using the “bible” to make laws and punishments for those offenders of the bible!

    In the Bible’s New Testament, Jesus tells his disciples, “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.” (see Matthew 18:6; Mark 9:42; and Luke 17:2)

    Now where is my “great millstone” when I need it?

    The John Jay Report commissioned by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops was based on surveys completed by the Catholic dioceses in the United States. The surveys provided information from diocesan files on each priest accused of sexual abuse and on each of the priest’s victims. That information was filtered, so that the research team did not have access to the names of the accused priests or the dioceses where they worked. The report presented aggregate findings. The dioceses were encouraged to issue reports of their own based on the surveys that they had completed. The Report found accusations against 4,392 priests in the USA, about 4% of all priests.

    And what about that divorce thingy? Oh yeah, The bible says that “adultery is punishable by stoning to death”.

    Eating crustations, according to the bible that is a sin, but so is obesity and not “loving thy neighbor”!

    So let’s pass some laws to protect the teaching of how I “interpret the bible”, which may, or may not actually be what it says. According to the bible I must track down these priests and “great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea”. All of these priests must be cast to the sea! After that I, because it is my religious belief, will go to the family law courts and start “casting stones”., and no one has the right to stop me or tell me it is wrong because Jesus said to do it! Then I am on my way to the local “Red Lobster” to get all of those sinners too! And what about all of the fat people? Well there are so many in the United States that I am going to inevitably need the help of the “church” with that one! But we will have to make sure we start the punishment with all of those obese priests to get them out of the way! After all of this has been accomplished it will be ssssoooo much easier for me to “love thy neighbor” because they will not be different than me! Yea!!!! It is going to be so much fun “crusading” for “Jesus” and doiing “God’s work”!

  • Dirk

    Good Will….
    Well put! The attack against a religeous and historical institution, ordained of God and evident in all He created, has nothing to do with “equality”. It’s purpose it to tear down something that is sacred to heterosexuals so that same sex marrriage appears to be the same as the marriage between a man and a woman. If not, why are they fighting so vicioulsy for “rights” that they already have? You can argue all day that a bird and a fish are the same, but like same sex unions and traditional marriage they are not and never will be. Respecting and celebrating “diversity” implies that we can be different but accepting of each other. Why is it so important that same sex union “appear” the same as traditional marriage?

  • H.P.

    Saint Daryl:

    Given your insightful interpretations of the scriptures, your disdain and contempt for those who have values and morality, your defense of homosexuality, and your fascination with sin and punishment I can only conclude that you must be a unrepentant and bitter homosexual child-abusing priest and rock collector. I’m sorry if mommy and daddy made you that way but as Don Henly says… “Get Over It!”.

  • Daryl

    H.P.

    Thanks,

    I can also see that you are one of those fat, crustation eating, people who support the child molesting priests, but hate the homo’s. Because that is what Jesus would do! So come on over, because I do live by the sea, so we can get this “millstone” thingy out of the way and restore the morality of religion based on the bible back into society! Do I also have to get out the stones because of your divorce, which is against the teachings of the bible? I just want to know so that I am properly prepared!

  • Joe

    Women and men are fundamentally different. Marriage was ordained by a loving God who knew these differences. Women and men are also complementary. It is part of a loving design to bless us and help us progress.

  • WRB

    @ Ed

    There’s an awful lot to disagree with in Ed’s post, and I wasn’t able to understand what his discussion of gun rights has to do with the well-know weakness of the slippery slope argument.

    So I will respond the last bit, i.e. that Ed is supporting Prop. 8, the ban on gay marriage, to support religious freedom. The twisted logic that represents is staggering. If religious freedom means anything it means that everyone (not just Ed) gets to practice their religious beliefs as they see fit, and the state does NOT take sides and mandate any one definition of marriage or anything else in the sphere of religious beliefs. Prop. 8, as it’s proponents have said over and over, is specifically aimed at limiting the definition of civil marriage for EVERYONE to the definition that is favored primarily by religious traditionalists. It was put on the ballot by churches and is being promoted by churches. It prevents people who don’t agree with those churches from getting married to the person they love.

    As to “freedom from indoctrination” I’ve addressed that many times. It’s simply a myth & a rather obvious red herring. Interracial marriage has been around in CA for 60 years. Are kids being “indoctrinated” with interracial marriages? No. Are churches being forced to perform them? No. The idea that our constitution allowing gay people to get married on an equal footing with everyone else equates to indoctrination is just absurd on its face. Does a bond measure “indoctrinate” children that borrowing and spending money you don’t have is OK? Do family and medical leave laws “indoctrinate” children that they should get pregnant so they don’t have to go to work? It’s just a scare tactic that has nothing to do with the actual issue being decided: should our constitution eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry?

  • H.P.

    Daryl:

    Sorry, but I’m not fat, I’be been married to the same WOMAN for more than 25 years, I abhor the behavior of child molesting priests like you, and I dislike and refrain from eating seafood. I have homosexuals in my family whom I care about and respect and who are not ignorant self-righteous God-hating fools like you. I’m glad to know you live by the sea becuaue I don’t and I couldn’t bear the thought that you might live in my neighborhood. Nevertheless, I would like to get you that millstone. So, try as you might to tear me down like you try to do to God, the Bible, rights, living a life based on values and pricples, and marriage only strengthens my resolve to defend what is right and avoid becoming an evil wretch like you.

  • WRB

    PS “CA Sup. Ct.” means the California Supreme Court, specifically in the case finding that our constitutional guarantees of equal protection means the state has no basis to deny equal marriage rights to gays. It relied heavily on the cases that found that the state may not deny equal marriage rights to interracial couples.

  • Ed

    WRB:

    I couldn’t help but notice that you avoided responding to several points in my post including your statement “In fact the CA Sup. Ct. went out of its way to point out that religious institutions will not be forced into anything.”
    You toss the word “Myth” around but you do not respond to the FACT with respect to what the California State Education Code states and what has happened in Massachusetts. And what about the case in New Mexico. All important to the basis of the proponents’ arguments but you choose to ignore them. Is it becuase you have not done your own research or was this an inadvertant oversight on your part? I think you use the word myth to avoid exposing yourself to the truth.

    You probably don’t have kids given but if you did, I bet you would be furious if I was imposing my beliefs on them and you couldn’t do anything to stop me. Maybe then you would understand how I feel.

    As far as the gun example, you started the analogy and I addressed it. The point is that just like gun rights and abortion rights, the consequences and extremes to which sex marriage will go starts by getting a small foothold, and then as your hero and inspiration Gavin Newsome says “the doors are open – like it or not”.

  • RC White

    Religious freedom, means Christian, Muslim, Buddhists, no god or a whole bunch! Separation of church and state, a fundamental concept in America, or maybe not?! Prop 8 and its supporter’s “traditional marriage” are just trying to force their tradition on everyone else. Face it, America has “traditionally” led the way on expanding equality among all men and women. The prop 8 supporters are a small number in the global picture; e.g. there are 700 million Muslims in Indonesia alone and their “traditional marriage” is not your traditional marriage. Oh, maybe since they’re Muslims they don’t count.

  • Daryl

    H.P.

    Thank you for bringing up your points, but I am not a “God-hating fool”, or “evil wretch”, but thank you for “judging not less ye shall be judged”. I just happen to take the Bible literally, and do not pick and choose what I believe would be most appropriate for my personal needs and desires.

    You have a neighborhood? Interesting, because Jesus really did not. Do you have property? Because he did not! He gave it all away to people who needed it more than him for their personal basic needs like shelter, clothing, food, etc. Do you do this so that you can be “Christ Like”? And oh yeah, who did he befriend? Drunks, prostitutes, Jews, and other “outcasts of society” for whom the “majority” did not like because they were different. He “turned the other cheek” even when the “majority” who believed they were “living a life based on values and principles” nailed him to the cross he said “forgive them for they know not what they do”.

    Now when I come to visit your neighborhood you have to greet me as a traveler and take me into your home, otherwise that would be another sin.

    OOOOOPPPPPSSS! It appears that we may have different opinions of “God”, and probably by deduction, different “religions”, so what do we do now? Since we are destroying the U.S. Constitution and we can no longer guarantee “freedoms” and “equality” there is only room for one of us to have our religion! Which shall it be? What shall we do now? Oh darn, those other people in the U.S. do not want their “freedoms” taken away because they may not practice either of our religions. Well we are going to have to take away their rights too, especially if they are a minority, you know, like Buddists. Because whoever can pool the most money from our “religion” will get the right to force others to have to practice it!

    A vote for any proposition to take away anyone’s civil rights under the Constitution is an open door for complete discrimination! This country was founded on “all men are created equal”, there for discrimination has no place in the law making process. A vote for prop 8 is not a vote to “protect religious freedoms” it is a vote to discriminate against a minority for the sole purpose of taking away their freedom! Which is for the most part, being funded by 3 religions in order to force their “religious beliefs” on others! This is not “religious freedom”! A vote NO says very clearly, no discrimination, no segregation, no taking away anyone’s legal rights to be treated equal, there for insuring that you and I can continue to have different “religious beliefs”, allowed to practice them, but are not allowed to force others to practice them! Have you forgotten about “Separation of church and state”?

  • RC White

    Just to clear up whether marriage is a right or not in California, the ballot reads, and I quote

    “Shall the California Constitution be changed to eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry providing that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California?”

    Note the words ELIMINATE and RIGHT

  • Joe

    I’m glad that my parents chose to unite in a marriage between a man and a woman. If each one had chosen a same-sex marriage, I wouldn’t be here. Nor would anyone who reads this.

  • Joe

    The issue is not whether same sex couples will be able to live together, or have hospital visitation rights. The issue is whether or not our society will condone and encourage this form of lifestyle. Defining marriage between same sex couples will not make it illegal for them to live together, but it will keep our society from promoting this practice which produces no children and is against nature. Men and women are fundamentally different and compliment each other and only between a man and a woman is it possible for children to be brought into the world.

  • RC White

    The way it looks to me is, less children would be a good thing, e.g. George W. Bush, Pat Buchanan, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Joe the Plumber, and the anti-Americans who stole the signs from my front yard

  • http://quenchzine.blogspot.com/2008/10/i-am-not-nazi.html. Quench Zine

    “I was blown away by the cognitive dissonance required to say that gay people and the Nazis who sent them to concentration camps were, in fact, one and the same.”

    Quench Blog presents commentary on a recent speech given at an official rally in support of Proposition 8, which would ban same-sex marriage in California. The speaker compared same-sex marriage to the Holocaust in Nazi-era Germany.

    A Quench blogger from Harvard responded with a post entitled, “I am not a Nazi”: http://quenchzine.blogspot.com/2008/10/i-am-not-nazi.html.

    He writes: “I am so not the oppressor. As someone who feels the burden of legitimizing myself every day of my life to the public at large, whose very existence is an acceptable topic of national debate, it’s not just crazy–it’s scary. truly, deeply, scary. We can’t ignore the yes on Prop 8 people and their ilk anymore, dismissing them as ignorant and unworthy of recognition, because its that very ignorance and irrational, perverse hatred that makes them so dangerous.”

    Check out the blog post at: http://quenchzine.blogspot.com/2008/10/i-am-not-nazi.html. Please link to us, if you’re able – and share your thoughts and comments!

  • H.P.

    Yes, Jesus befriended the “drunks, prostitutes, Jews, and other “outcasts of society” for whom the “majority” did not like because they were different”, but he did not condone their actions (sins). He taught love the sinner but not the sin. If you want to live like Jesus, give away your property. Start with you computer.

  • Shane

    I cannot believe they would even try to repeal proposition 8. Do they realize how hard it is for gay individuals to live “normal” lives sometimes? I am a gay male 22 years of age and I dont look at my sexual orientation as a disease or something abnormal. I look at it as being true to myself. It was a long hard fight to get this approved for California and many people like me want it go nationwide. I find that my friends, family and acquaintances are very accepting of my lifestyle and it is looked at as more of a normalcy. I think that parrents that are concerned about what their children are being taught in school should look at the bigger picture of how they’re children will acclamate to society once they graduate. They will not be as open minded as they could be and what if they have a friend that happens to be gay or lesbian? Should the shun then simply because of their sexual orientation? Why dont these people just look at us as the individuals we are and what we contribute to society as a human being instead of being worried about what we do in the aspects of our personal lives that do not affect them. This is appalling and heartwrenching and I can promise i will be doing everything i can to support opposition for proposition 8. Wake up people its nearly 2009, homosexuality is only going to become more of a widespread normalcy, get used it!

  • TSG

    Since the 1970′s the number of marriages with children have been declining and only about 26% of heterosexual marriages have children in United States now. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1355/is_2_97/ai_58411552

    Why did all those couples get married if they aren’t having children? I suspect for the same reasons gays want to get married, for love first and fore-most. Then for legal benefits of inheritance, taxes, etc.

    Vote NO of Prop 8.

  • David Blackburn

    If Prop 8 passes, there were two possibilities that none of the news agencies are reporting; 1) All marriages be invalidated within the state or, 2) Marriages be banned altogether in the state. The ruling seemed clear to me that the Supreme Court would not permit the state to recognize further marriages or benefits associated with marriage, but would probably require marriage to be called something else.

    Please see the following lines from the ruling:

    In our view, the statutory provisions restricting marriage to a man and a woman cannot be understood as having merely a disparate impact on gay persons, but instead properly must be viewed as directly classifying and prescribing distinct treatment on the basis of sexual orientation. By limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples, the marriage statutes, realistically viewed, operate clearly and directly to impose different treatment on gay individuals because of their sexual orientation. By definition, gay individuals are persons who are sexually attracted to persons of the same sex and thus, if inclined to enter into a marriage relationship, would
    choose to marry a person of their own sex or gender…Just as a statute that restricted marriage only to couples of the same sex would discriminate against heterosexual persons on the basis of their heterosexual orientation, the current California statutes realistically must be viewed as discriminating against gay persons on the basis of their homosexual orientation.
    ——————————————————————-
    When a statute’s differential treatment of separate categories of individuals is found to violate equal
    protection principles, a court must determine whether the constitutional violation should be eliminated or
    cured by extending to the previously excluded class the treatment or benefit that the statute affords to the
    included class, or alternatively should be remedied by withholding the benefit equally from both the
    previously included class and the excluded class. A court generally makes that determination by
    considering whether extending the benefit equally to both classes, or instead withholding it equally, would
    be most consistent with the likely intent of the Legislature, had that body recognized that unequal
    treatment was constitutionally impermissible. (See, e.g., Kopp v. Fair Political Practices Com. (1995) 11
    Cal.4th 607, 626-662; Arp v. Workers’ Comp. Appeals Bd., supra, 19 Cal.4th 395, 407-410.)
    ——————————————————————-
    We have no occasion in this case to determine whether the state constitutional right to marry necessarily affords all couples the constitutional right to require the state to designate their official family relationship a “marriage,” or whether, as the Attorney General suggests, the Legislature would not violate a couple’s constitutional right to marry if — perhaps in order to emphasize and clarify that this civil institution is distinct from the religious institution of marriage — it were to assign a name other than marriage as the official designation of the family relationship for all couples. The current California statutes, of course, do not assign a name other than marriage for all couples, but instead reserve exclusively to opposite-sex couples the traditional designation of marriage, and assign a different designation — domestic partnership — to the only official family relationship available to same-sex couples.

    Whether or not the name “marriage,” in the abstract, is considered a core element of the state constitutional right to marry, one of the core elements of this fundamental right is the right of same-sex couples to have their official family relationship accorded the same dignity, respect, and stature as that accorded to all other officially recognized family relationships. The current statutes — by drawing a distinction between the name assigned to the family relationship available to opposite-sex couples and the name assigned to the family relationship available to same-sex couples, and by reserving the historic and highly respected designation of marriage exclusively to opposite-sex couples while offering same-sex couples only the new and unfamiliar designation of domestic partnership — pose a serious risk of denying the official family relationship of same-sex couples the equal dignity and respect that is a core element of the constitutional right to marry.

    We need not decide in this case whether the name “marriage” is invariably a core element of the state constitutional right to marry so that the state would violate a couple’s constitutional right even if — perhaps in order to emphasize and clarify that this civil institution is distinct from the religious institution of marriage — the state were to assign a name other than marriage as the official designation of the formal family relationship for all couples. Under the current statutes, the state has not revised the name of the official family relationship for all couples, but rather has drawn a distinction between the name for the official family relationship of opposite-sex couples (marriage) and that for same-sex couples (domestic partnership). One of the core elements of the right to establish an officially recognized family that is embodied in the California constitutional right to marry is a couple’s right to have their family relationship accorded dignity and respect equal to that accorded other officially recognized families, and assigning a different designation for the family relationship of same-sex couples while reserving the historic designation of “marriage” exclusively for opposite-sex couples poses at least a serious risk of denying the family relationship of same-sex couples such equal dignity and respect. We therefore conclude that although the provisions of the current domestic partnership legislation afford same-sex couples most of the substantive elements embodied in the constitutional right to marry, the current California statutes nonetheless must be viewed as potentially impinging upon a same-sex couple’s constitutional right to marry under the California Constitution.

  • http://vigneshram.tumblr.com Vignesh Ram

    Professor Lessig, I applaud you for taking a sensitive approach to a sensitive issue.

    For those who’ve responded stating that marriage is in itself a religious institution, and civil unions are reserved for the absence of religion in the ceremony, they fail to realize the significance of marriage not as a Christian institution alone, but one in many religions around the world.

    The “marriage” lifestyle that our state sanctions currently is the result of common consensus of civilized people. We as a collective decided that “marriage” would come to mean certain things: (a), (b), and (c). None of these were the codification of the sanctity of the institution in the eyes of God. Rather we as a society have adopted a broader definition, where whether you believe in Abraham’s God, the Hindu triad, or Buddhism where there is no God, you have the ability to get married. Indeed, many of us have secular agnostic or atheist friends who have gotten married.

    Thus, our societal norms have come to dictate marriage as something all together different. The repercussions are vast, and perhaps offensive to some religious individuals. The implications of denying this right that means (a), (b), and (c) in our society does in fact adversely impact homosexuals by transforming them into a legal and cultural anomaly. And I would argue further that extending the arm of the law to deny such a right that has been granted by the California Constitution should not turn on a 50+1 vote, but that is a completely different argument all together.

    That said, I do not want my children growing up in a world where a gay couple have a fundamentally different relationship than a straight couple in the eyes of the law. Marriage no longer means a religious union except to those who are still religious. When you’re casting your ballot, please consider the rest of us.

  • surfdad

    Prop. 8 does not remove any rights from homosexual couples. Domestic partnerships already have all the same rights and privileges as married couples under the law (please see the CA Family Code section 297.5, which states: “Registered domestic partners shall have the same rights, protections, and benefits, and shall be subject to the same responsibilities, obligations, and duties under law, whether they derive from statutes, administrative regulations, court rules, government policies, common law, or any other provisions or sources of law, as are granted to and imposed upon spouses.” . http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=fam&group=00001-01000&file=297-297.5

  • athiest

    Vignesh Ram:
    Can you name me a mainstream religion who does teach that the homosexual act is NOT a sin? Every major religion (Christian and non Christian) believes that having sex outside of a heterosexual mairiage is a sin.

    If your not religious then obtain a Domestic Partnership agreement and do not be associated with all those wierd people who still believe in a higher power. Stand up for your beliefs and teach your children that there is not god and that anything do do with religion is for lesser people. If this is what you believe then stand by it.

  • Juan Jaasiel Rodriguez

    there is very deep issue here at hand in terms of marriage. This problem will in no way be solved in this election. The door for conflict has been blown wide open, and the issue will go on to weig more important things in our country.

    We must truly look at the responsibilities of the state, and its need to promote the well being of it’s systems ability to provide freedoms and liberties for its constituents and to avoid creating inconsistencies for them that leads to moral dilemnas.

    If we are to be true liberterians, and propose a state of anarchy, we must therefore not ask the state to consider our contracts, agreements, rhetoric etc. in its decision making process. For example, absolutely free trade and economy. However, because we request help (Welfare, police, defence, social security), recognition (race, profession, sexual orientation, business, sexual orientation, single or married), and action (money, punishments, reimbursements, domicile, visitation rights) from the system, and beg often for its interference for its constituents, we therefore grant it a power. And this is it: discernment.

    It must have the power to categorize. Who is poor, guilty, friend, enemy, retirement aged, hispanic, white, black, architect, school teacher, lawyer, president, soldier, pilot, gay, straight, neither, both, single, married, owed to, owes, guilty, not guilty, afflicted, afflicting, is in georgia, is in texas, is in california, related, unrelated, etc. This is key to our system of law. We give it this power because of the complexity it has due to our requests of it. No one is exempt in this request by virtue of living here. Therefore, we cannot claim infinite equality from the law.

    This is fine. It’s ok. Anyone against it or that says it is not true is simply not looking hard enough.

    Proposition 8 proponents, and anyone who comes against it, are fighting over a power of discernment of the law, and that is the relational status that the law categorizes two people as “marriage”. The category has already existed for a long time, and the law has helped, recognized, and acted on this category. And therefore it has interfered. Once again this is ok. Because we expect this of the government. And if we do not consider this fair, than that person does not belong here, and probably not in any other government.

    They are absolute anarchists.

    Now, this is the danger that our modern day is putting before our government: regulating on popular basis what the different categories are, and furthermore, what their individual responsibilities, benefits, demerits, restrictions and other qualities are.

    So, the marriage contract, homosexual relationships, heterosexual relationships, polygamist relationships, incest relationships, and others are all recognized by the law and assigned a status, legal or illegal. This too is ok. They are each individual categories. However, the marriage contract is a far more formal category. The real differences between the different relationships are all implied by the different titles we give them, however the differences occur in reality. They are obvious. And no one can deny them. Any straight person who would say that their relationship is the same as that as any other relationship, gay or plural and so on, and believes it, is in serious trouble.

    Now, this is the problem of not supporting a measure such as prop 8. You force the law to take two VERY different relationships, with very REAL differences, make it dishonor those differences, and force them into a category that will provide the EXACT same qualities to both relationships. We do not need the law to do this, because it is already done. It’s called a union.

    Furthermore, we are forcing the law to take a category, called a contract, and force it into one of our most fundamental categories: a Right. We are confusing it with a real right: the right to hold a contract. Therefore, we remove a serious right: the right to exclusivity in any contract. And we will take it to the supreme court to do this.

    All in the name of equality. This is perhaps the biggest challenges this country will face. Are we going to force the government to hand over its power of discernment to our will and whim. And then, force it to close its eyes to real differences because of the word of the day, Tolerance and Equality, in this case, and then make it act irrelevant of those differences.

    The psychological impact that this will have on the future of this nation is unknown and could not be calculated. Because we will begin the eroding of value and difference for the law, we may affect the very nature of this culture in the future. And in no good way, because we may begin to affect the categories of the general culture and social structure because of its interdependence of with government in a negative manner, for example the many court cases already being held as well as their rulings show this. This is not a direct attack human rights and decency, and neither are people calculating to do this great harm to our nation. It is simply our inability to see past the real issues, and handle them as required.

    That there are ways to protect different groups from discrimination and that we can, with the law, is true. And we should definitely have them in play. But granting the formal homosexual union the same as the formal heterosexual union is not the way. This will unnecessarily inhibit the rights of heterosexual union.

    We should avoid this precedent at all costs. Because it is a precedent for lying at the fundamental levels of the government, not just at decision making and bureaucratic levels.

    Forget the problems for the two groups for and against gay marriage, we are entering a discussion of this nation’s government’s future, it’s quality, and possible eventual demise.

    to say the least, picture ralph wiggum getting thrown through a glass window and saying: “I’m a brick”

  • http://www.stirlinggardner.com Stirling Gardner

    MY BEST FRIEND’S GAY.

    To all the straight dudes like me out there:

    It’s the day before the election.

    By the end of tomorrow, my best friend will know whether or not he can be legally married in the state of California. And as the polls stand right now, it looks like he won’t be able to do that. And that bums me out, brother.

    If you told me when I was growing up that my best friend would be gay I’d have laughed in your face, maybe even punched you in it. I grew up in a rural area of Maryland filled with mullets, acid wash jeans and the good ole boys that wore them both. Hell, I was one of ‘em… part of me still is. I went to Catholic school, a private university and didn’t know an openly gay person until I moved to Los Angeles.

    I played “smear the queer”, called my friends “faggots” and if someone did something silly or stupid, I’d call him “gay”. I simply had no frame of reference. Perhaps if you are reading this, you don’t either and I can appeal to you in these final hours…

    I know every single one of you (whether you are man enough to admit it or not) hopes to find your perfect partner… dare I say soulmate? Personally, I have visions of finding “love at first sight”, going through the first stages of love where I can’t get enough of this beautiful woman, falling madly in love with her, marrying and living happily ever after where we both die peacefully in our sleep holding hands.

    Guess what? We aren’t the only ones that have those feelings. Gay men and women have the exact same dreams that we do, because that is what PEOPLE do… dream. We dream of what we want to be when we grow up, the kind of house we want to live in, where we are going to vacation and what our perfect relationship looks like. And just like all of us straight guys where we prefer blondes over brunettes over redheads, there are some people that prefer others of the same sex. That’s really all there is to it. Believe it or not, they aren’t doing it to spite you.

    I know that some of you who oppose same sex marriage want to make this into a huge deal where the door will be open for people to marry rabbits and aliens and anything else you can imagine, but the simple fact of the matter is, that argument doesn’t work.

    My gay best friend doesn’t want to marry a rabbit any more than I do. Or an alien for that matter. (Although I would have sex with that hot alien chick on the new Battlestar Gallactica.)

    I am in the entertainment industry and since moving to L.A., I have met hundreds of gay guys and I have to tell you all a secret… “Shhhh… they are people EXACTLY like you and me except they happen to like other dudes.” I know that seems weird to you. It did to me too when I first moved out here, but since then I have observed them and taken notes and this is what I have found:

    OBSERVATION OF THE GAYS:

    1) They have feelings just like you and me. They experience love, hate, jealousy, disappointment and elation.
    2) Some of them actually have more successful relationships than we do. Imagine that. Two people in a relationship that actually works. What would you give for that? I’ve looked up to the sky and offered God ANYTHING for a successful relationship. I’m still waiting and I envy ANYONE that can make that work.
    3) Gays are PEOPLE. They are entitled to the same things all other people are: the right to vote, the right to free speech and should be afforded the right to marry one another. It’s simply a matter of equality.
    4) Gays are generally clean. This has nothing to do with anything, but I wanted to share ALL of the data with you.

    My best friend is an amazing singer and one late night, we were hanging out with a few friends and he sang, “Loch Lomond” (look it up). When he was finished, without even thinking about it, I said, “One day, I want you to sing that at my wedding.” He was honored.

    And then I started thinking about what honor I could bestow upon him to reciprocate. And it hit me that I may never be able to do something like that for him if Prop 8 passes tomorrow.

    I’ve seen him these last two weeks in the throws of a budding relationship and it has been a real education for me. I’m not used to being this tight with a buddy who also happens to be gay and I have to say there are still things that open my eyes.

    He’s in that beautiful, romantic phase of a new relationship where they want to spend every moment together. I’ve never seen him so happy. So inspired. And that makes me happy. Although it is still hard for me to understand how he can be physically attracted to another guy (we’re loud, sweaty and not that smart), what I do understand and appreciate are the feelings. And it is absolutely amazing to witness.

    I hope he falls madly in love with this guy, they move in together and if they so choose, are allowed to marry one another in the eyes of the law and all of their “fabulous” party guests. If that happens, I’m sure I’ll cry. (I’m a sucker for weddings).

    And in the meantime, I’m going to remain positive and think about what I can do for him at his wedding. It’s only fair. As it looks between the two of them now, I better start taking guitar lessons tonight.

    So from one bro to another, I’d like to ask this favor: Please vote No on Prop 8.

    Even if you don’t want to do it for the gay guys because you don’t know them, do it for me… a straight dude.

    Because I really can’t stand having to owe anyone anything!

    Thank you for reading this.

    NO ON 8!

    By: Stirling Gardner
    Me@StirlingGardner.com

  • Juan Jaasiel Rodriguez Ornelas

    there is very deep issue here at hand in terms of marriage. This problem will in no way be solved in this election. The door for conflict has been blown wide open, and the issue will go on to weig more important things in our country.

    We must truly look at the responsibilities of the state, and its need to promote the well being of it’s systems ability to provide freedoms and liberties for its constituents and to avoid creating inconsistencies for them that leads to moral dilemnas.

    If we are to be true liberterians, and propose a state of anarchy, we must therefore not ask the state to consider our contracts, agreements, rhetoric etc. in its decision making process. For example, absolutely free trade and economy. However, because we request help (Welfare, police, defence, social security), recognition (race, profession, sexual orientation, business, sexual orientation, single or married), and action (money, punishments, reimbursements, domicile, visitation rights) from the system, and beg often for its interference for its constituents, we therefore grant it a power. And this is it: discernment.

    It must have the power to categorize. Who is poor, guilty, friend, enemy, retirement aged, hispanic, white, black, architect, school teacher, lawyer, president, soldier, pilot, gay, straight, neither, both, single, married, owed to, owes, guilty, not guilty, afflicted, afflicting, is in georgia, is in texas, is in california, related, unrelated, etc. This is key to our system of law. We give it this power because of the complexity it has due to our requests of it. No one is exempt in this request by virtue of living here. Therefore, we cannot claim infinite equality from the law.

    This is fine. It’s ok. Anyone against it or that says it is not true is simply not looking hard enough.

    Proposition 8 proponents, and anyone who comes against it, are fighting over a power of discernment of the law, and that is the relational status that the law categorizes two people as “marriage”. The category has already existed for a long time, and the law has helped, recognized, and acted on this category. And therefore it has interfered. Once again this is ok. Because we expect this of the government. And if we do not consider this fair, than that person does not belong here, and probably not in any other government.

    They are absolute anarchists.

    Now, this is the danger that our modern day is putting before our government: regulating on popular basis what the different categories are, and furthermore, what their individual responsibilities, benefits, demerits, restrictions and other qualities are.

    So, the marriage contract, homosexual relationships, heterosexual relationships, polygamist relationships, incest relationships, and others are all recognized by the law and assigned a status, legal or illegal. This too is ok. They are each individual categories. However, the marriage contract is a far more formal category. The real differences between the different relationships are all implied by the different titles we give them, however the differences occur in reality. They are obvious. And no one can deny them. Any straight person who would say that their relationship is the same as that as any other relationship, gay or plural and so on, and believes it, is in serious trouble.

    Now, this is the problem of not supporting a measure such as prop 8. You force the law to take two VERY different relationships, with very REAL differences, make it dishonor those differences, and force them into a category that will provide the EXACT same qualities to both relationships. We do not need the law to do this, because it is already done. It’s called a union.

    Furthermore, we are forcing the law to take a category, called a contract, and force it into one of our most fundamental categories: a Right. We are confusing it with a real right: the right to hold a contract. Therefore, we remove a serious right: the right to exclusivity in any contract. And we will take it to the supreme court to do this.

    All in the name of equality. This is perhaps the biggest challenges this country will face. Are we going to force the government to hand over its power of discernment to our will and whim. And then, force it to close its eyes to real differences because of the word of the day, Tolerance and Equality, in this case, and then make it act irrelevant of those differences.

    The psychological impact that this will have on the future of this nation is unknown and could not be calculated. Because we will begin the eroding of value and difference for the law, we may affect the very nature of this culture in the future. And in no good way, because we may begin to affect the categories of the general culture and social structure because of its interdependence of with government in a negative manner, for example the many court cases already being held as well as their rulings show this. This is not a direct attack human rights and decency, and neither are people calculating to do this great harm to our nation. It is simply our inability to see past the real issues, and handle them as required.

    That there are ways to protect different groups from discrimination and that we can, with the law, is true. And we should definitely have them in play. But granting the formal homosexual union the same as the formal heterosexual union is not the way. This will unnecessarily inhibit the rights of heterosexual union.

    We should avoid this precedent at all costs. Because it is a precedent for lying at the fundamental levels of the government, not just at decision making and bureaucratic levels.

    Forget the problems for the two groups for and against gay marriage, we are entering a discussion of this nation’s government’s future, it’s quality, and possible eventual demise.

    to say the least, picture ralph wiggum getting thrown through a glass window and saying: “I’m a brick”

  • Phill

    Larry;
    Unfortunately your ignorance damns your arguments. I live in a state where in some areas polygamous marriages are prevalent and have family members that are in this lifestyle. While fine for the adults (mostly beyond their own self imposed misery) it is an incredibly difficult, miserable. pathetic existence, that is fraught with abuse and suffering on the children. It is incredibly sickening. What’s worse, is the kids never are able to escape it (unless they are kicked out for being boys) and they grow up perpetuating the cycle of abuse.

    I fail to see how one kind of “alternate marriage” would not lead to another. In an attempt to accommodate a few good friends people are foisting on society an untested sociological experiment that has incredible potential to go wrong in many ways. Remember, the constitution is written to provide for “the general welfare” and not “make a minority happy.” You, of all people, should know that Larry.

    Non-traditional marriage structures should not be encouraged. Though in your myopic view you can’t see how impressionable children might be influenced, I certainly do. If I was in California I’d be calling my attorney if my kid came home with this;

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,445865,00.html

    Just because marriage of late has been shown to be troublesome for many heterosexual couples doesn’t somehow make gay marriage (or what follows polygamous marriage) a good idea.

    I urge Californians to vote yes on Proposition 8.

  • Daryl

    To “surfdad”,

    Just to clear a few misconceptions about the proposition up, you state “Prop. 8 does not remove any rights from homosexual couples”. Thank you for your legal words of wisdom and clarity! If that is the case, then why dos the prop ONLY STATE “ELIMINATES RIGHT of same sex couples to marry?”

    Please read the proposition before you attempt to make arguments which will simply make you look ignorant!

  • Tom Chandler

    In response to Peter Burns and David Robertson: Check out http://www.DemographicWinter.com. It provides concrete scientific evidence that the world’s population is in danger of dropping too low.

  • Albert Anonymous

    Is this fighting for who can define what the cultural concept of marriage means really about legal and human rights of gays, or just another symptom of the endless cultural fight between liberals and conservatives trying to force their own values down everyone’s else’s throats?

    Even if same sex marriages were not allowed In California, nobody’s ging to force gays to get rid of their partners. You could also still legally protect the rights of gay couples by giving them basically the same rights as the married men and women have. Maybe not the same cultural status as marriages have – but that would be difficult even if gays have a right to marry.

    If there already are married gay couples in California, those unions couldn’t be made illegal just like that because of this or that proposition. Probably those unions would be changed to registered partnerships that could guarantee practically all the same rights as marriages do. It is about legal details of laws, not about a cultural name that is used for a certain kind of union between same or opposite sex partners.

    As to culture and values related to marriage, and which ever way the Proposition 8 goes, you simply cannot change the values and existing cultural traditions of other people easily.

    You have to realize that a majority of people, throughout the whole world, still believe and will believe that a marriage is primarily an institute meant for heterosexual couples, who can also make children if they so wish. It is not discriminating to think so, and people have every right to such values, as much as gays have rights to their values – as long as they respect others and give them their freedom to live their lives as they wish.

    Children are a rather natural part of traditional marriages, even if some married couples may not have kids. You have to remember the rights of children too when discussing marriage and related laws. Would it be ok, if all gay couples were allowed to adopt children? Many will say yes without a hesitation because of their values related to sexual freedom, and regardless of what would really be best for the children. Why? Or would a family where there would be both a mother and a father still be considered better than a gay couple? Or is it just not politically correct to say that anymore in some circles? Can gay marriages really be equal to heterosexual marriages in that respect?

    Many specialists see that children should ideally have both a mother and a father, a male and a female role model in the family. In a natural, biological family that is also always the case, but not in a homosexual family, even if those gays might be very good with children. A gay family that has children can never be considered a natural family.

    Gay couples and families are and will be considered different from heterosexual couples and families, for obvious and natural reasons, which ever name people may use of them (marriage, registered partnership or what ever). Why should they be labeled just the same, regardless of the obvious and natural differences, and despite huge political opposition? I would rather try to look for some kind of a constructive compromise between various parties in the dispute. Registered partnership as a gay alternative to marriage, and enjoying mostly the same rights, would seem like a good choice.

  • http://breckenridgerealestate.tumblr.com/ Alex

    Stand up for your cause!; let people know, show who you are, and what you are and be proud!, don’t be swallowed up into an ambiguous term.

  • http://www.stephenjaygould.org/ Miguel Chavez

    I voted against prop 8, but I think its near certain that it will pass. Right now its 53% in favor, and 47% against. The problem is that all the more liberal districts have reported, with only the conservative districts left. Compare the 2004 Bush/Kerry election map with the districts that have reported in on prop 8.
    http://www.willisms.com/archives/california2004.gif
    http://www.kcra.com/california-proposition-8/
    The only hope is that these are incomplete reports.

  • Patricia

    I am deeply disappointed in my heart that the state of California would allow Prop 8 to pass. I am a married grandmother of 8-legal guardian to three of them whose mother and father could not keep a marriage and a family together-many different sex couples should never be issued a marriage license. The fact that we would allow an amendment to our state constitution that allows discrimination makes me sick and makes me very afraid for my grandchildren. Maybe next election we can pass an amendment that says only heterosexual couple of the same ethnicity and religion can marry?
    Obviously some organized religions are not about tolerance and love, they are about division and hatred.
    For the first time I am ASHAMED to tell people I am a native of California.

  • JS

    @Gerry

    “FACT: “Marriage” is not simply a word that can arbitrarily redefined. Marriage is an institution and tradition founded in religious roots that for thousands of years has stood for and been embraced by humankind as the union of a man and a woman.”

    Except in Utah…

  • California Got It Right

    Truth, morality, and right have prevailed over those who seek to destroy our society and the foundations of human existence. No matter how many obscene names you called me, no matter how much you violated my personal property, no matter how hard you tried to trample my freedom of speech, freedom of religious beliefs, and parental rights, and no matter how much you hypocritically called me intolerant and hateful, you can never change what God and nature have created nor the natural and spiritual laws that govern our existence.

  • http://www.tarilacourt.com I’m Ashamed to Be a Californian

    I am ashamed. How can any one, no matter what your religious beliefs, take rights away from anothter. That only means that you are cold-hearted, narrow-minded, and very, very selfish scared people. I cannot phathom this result. And as for Calif Got It Right, you are a horrible person. You people need to keep your personal thoughts to yourself. You are amazingly selfish and your children will grow up to be intolerant, narrow-minded jerks. I pray for your idiot children. THE BIBLE IS A BUNCH OF STORIES AND GOD AND JESUS WOULD NEVER, I REPEAT NEVER PROPOSE TO TAKE RIGHTS AWAY FROM ALL MANKIND. SHAME, SHAME ON YOU. YOU CAN’T BLAME GOD FOR THIS BLUNDER. YOU ARE HORRIBLE.

  • WRB

    To all those who supported equal rights, fairness and inclusion — the bedrock values of the America I learned to love — thank you. We didn’t get there today, but we’ll get there:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0FiCxZKuv8

  • Eric Blite

    i think people should stop bieng so ignorant against believing in gay marriage…our world is changing everyday and personally i want good change in the U.S and i believe if someone really loves someone of the same sex and they want to spend the rest of there lives with that special someone they should be allowed to…what’s america is coming to? when two people are refused love…thats what marriage is or used to be about…just love and now some people are having there rights to love taken away by saying if you love someone of the same sex as you your now allowed to take that opportunity to love them by a ceromony of marriage…i hope we change prop. 8 and allow equal rights to everyone because thats what america is about..the land of freedom and equal rights..a place where nobody is below anybody and if you feel you are you can have a voice and are allowed to have a voice and use it to your fullest capability, i hope america can become the great GREAT, EQUAL, UNITED country we want to be…how can we be great if we don’t allow the citizens to have love? how can we be equal if hetero sexual couples can have a marriage and homosexuals can’t? all together we will never be united…gay marriage has a BIG impact on the U.S and our rights.

  • Thoughtful

    (Note: I posted this comment elsewhere on this blog, but am re-posting it here, as this seems to be a place of active commenting).

    I am one who voted FOR Prop 8, but not for reasons having to do with “hate” and “bigotry,” as those who voted No are so quick to assume and accuse. If we want ( / need) to have this conversion, it needs to start by ending the name-calling and accusation coming from BOTH sides.

    My thoughts on this issue are many, but aside from not having the time nor the energy available right now for an in-depth exploration of them here, I’d rather start by *listening*… so let me put forth a question I keep finding myself asking:

    What do those who support “same sex marriage” think about polygamy? …and please note, I’m not throwing that out there as basis for polemic; it’s a sincere question. In other words, from your POV (again, I’m asking sincerely — truly!), is it OK to limit the definition of marriage with respect to A) the number of participants, but not B) their gender?

    The second element of this question, of course, becomes this: what are the implication of that position (whatever it turns out to be) on the raising of children?

  • WRB

    @ Thoughtful

    That’s an easy one to answer: same-sex marriage hasn’t any more to do with polygamy than interracial marriage does. Entirely different policy questions. I might just as well ask “what do those who support interracial marriage think about polygamy? In other words, from your POV (again, I’m asking sincerely — truly!), is it OK to limit the definition of marriage with respect to A) the number of participants, but not B) the color of their skin?”

    Again, the slippery slope “problem” is just a worn-out fallacy and a red herring. You can take most any law you like and construct a (not very good) argument that “if we allow A, then we’re going to have to allow B. And then of course C…..all the way to Z.” By that “logic” we’d never allow ANYthing.

  • BeanGolem

    Imagine this:

    Two devices are mounted on a wall. They are both manufactured by the city and both of them pump city water for drinking as a service to the community. They are identical in every way. But they are separate. Homosexuals must drink from the one labeled “bubbler” and the heterosexuals must drink from the one labeled “drinking fountain.”

    Separate IS NOT equal. This has been a foundation of civil rights for a long time.

    Too often people confuse marriage with sex. Sex is not marriage and marriage is not sex. Marriage is the public and legal declaration of two humans’ love for one another. Sex is the private display of intimacy between two loving individuals.

    Don’t even pretend for one second that heterosexual couples never engage in sexual acts that aren’t designed specifically for child conception. The idea that sex serves no purpose other than conception is absurd. The ability of two individuals, either homosexual or heterosexual, to share an intimate sexual experience that strengthens their relationship is fundamentally human. The most important role of sex in society is not to cary on our species. We have moved past that. Sex is almost purely a social act in all lifestyles. I cannot believe in a God or religion that would imply or state that a married couple should only engage in two or three sexual acts in their lifetime and for the sole purpose of procreation.

    Great video, btw.

  • Paul

    I am ashamed and appalled that Californians would use an instrument to guarantee rights to remove rights from a particular group. Whenever the rights of any group are abridged, it then becomes possible for those rights to be removed from other groups.

    I have seen no clear definitions of “man” and “woman” in Proposition 8. As many can attest, the state of being a “man” or being a “woman” is as much a state of mind as it is a state of physical characteristics. It should be allowed that two people, regardless of their anatomy, should be able to apply for a marriage license and one state “I am a woman” and the other state “I am a man” and receive a marriage license although Proposition 8 passed.

  • Maya

    Isn’t the only difference between gay people and not gay people the desire to have sex with the same sex? I have plenty of good girl friends, some that I have cohabitated with even, but I have never had sex with any of them. I just haven’t had that desire. I have even had good friends that were gay that broke up with me cause I wasn’t. I was more than willing to stay friends with them and accept their being different from me.
    Gay people are fundamentally different from straight people, just as fat from skinny and drunk from sober. But still we are all people. We each just have different strengths and weaknesses. I don’t want fat people teaching my kids that they are healthy or an alcoholic that that is just how they were born and every one is equal in this world. We are not all equal, no matter what anyone says. We are all different. Which is great. We were meant to be different. We all have obstacles to overcome. We are not one of us perfect!
    If you are gay then that is fine with me! Go right ahead! Do whatever you want! But don’t try to get me to say that that is OK cause I don’t think it is. I am entitled to my opinion just as you are yours!
    Marriage is a religious instituion it always was and always will be, now, then and forever more. Marriage is about family and always has been and always will be. Being gay is about sex. It always has been and always will be. So these arguments are just absurd!!!!
    Now in California and 29 other states marriage is defined as between a man and a woman. It shouldn’t have had to go there, but it did because people were trying to make a mockery of it. If prop 8 had lost and people were out protesting it they would be considered wrong. We voted and we chose and it won. Get over it people. The No on 8 had millions of dollars donated to it too. Some right out of the hands of babes (read CTA.) You don’t think the California TEACHERS Association could have come up with something better to spend $1.25 million on? Hmmm just one comes to mind, but how about education? They would rather educate my chilren that maybe they might want to try a same sex relationship? Kids will try anything if you tell them it’s ok. Duh! We were all kids once and know that to be a truth!
    This issue has just gone way over board! And the people just keep going and calling the ‘conservatives” wrong. How about just one example… 2 prom kings? Prom has always been about the most popular boy and the most popular girl. Hasn’t it? So isn’t it discriminating against the queen even more so if she can’t even be considered for this most high honor for our high school children? UHHH! What is wrong with the world today? The gays are saying Hate, but they are the ones out there hating! Can’t we all just get along and accept that we are different and life just isn’t fair. It never was, and it never will be. You just have to do the best with what you are given.
    There are many things people chose when they chose to be gay and one of them is giving up a “traditional” family. Life is about choice. It always has been and it always will be!

  • Maya

    Isn’t the only difference between gay people and not gay people the desire to have sex with the same sex? I have plenty of good girl friends, some that I have cohabitated with even, but I have never had sex with any of them. I just haven’t had that desire. I have even had good friends that were gay that broke up with me cause I wasn’t. I was more than willing to stay friends with them and accept their being different from me.
    Gay people are fundamentally different from straight people, just as fat from skinny and drunk from sober. But still we are all people. We each just have different strengths and weaknesses. I don’t want fat people teaching my kids that they are healthy or an alcoholic that that is just how they were born and every one is equal in this world. We are not all equal, no matter what anyone says. We are all different. Which is great. We were meant to be different. We all have obstacles to overcome. We are not one of us perfect!
    If you are gay then that is fine with me! Go right ahead! Do whatever you want! But don’t try to get me to say that that is OK cause I don’t think it is. I am entitled to my opinion just as you are yours!
    Marriage is a religious instituion it always was and always will be, now, then and forever more. Marriage is about family and always has been and always will be. Being gay is about sex. It always has been and always will be. So these arguments are just absurd!!!!
    Now in California and 29 other states marriage is defined as between a man and a woman. It shouldn’t have had to go there, but it did because people were trying to make a mockery of it. If prop 8 had lost and people were out protesting it they would be considered wrong. We voted and we chose and it won. Get over it people. The No on 8 had millions of dollars donated to it too. Some right out of the hands of babes (read CTA.) You don’t think the California TEACHERS Association could have come up with something better to spend $1.25 million on? Hmmm just one comes to mind, but how about education? They would rather educate my chilren that maybe they might want to try a same sex relationship? Kids will try anything if you tell them it’s ok. Duh! We were all kids once and know that to be a truth!
    This issue has just gone way over board! And the people just keep going and calling the ‘conservatives” wrong. How about just one example… 2 prom kings? Prom has always been about the most popular boy and the most popular girl. Hasn’t it? So isn’t it discriminating against the queen even more so if she can’t even be considered for this most high honor for our high school children? UHHH! What is wrong with the world today? The gays are saying Hate, but they are the ones out there hating! Can’t we all just get along and accept that we are different and life just isn’t fair. It never was, and it never will be. You just have to do the best with what you are given.
    There are many things people chose when they chose to be gay and one of them is giving up a “traditional” family. Life is about choice. It always has been and it always will be!

  • rwt

    There is no sin in being gay and there never has been. That is part of the message of the little book mentioned in Revelation 10. Don’t believe me. Pray to know and ask for the grace to receive.

  • iguanaboy

    Hmm…. I see my post hasn’t been included. I guess that answers my question about whether there is a fair representation of both sides on this blog. Pretty lame.

  • http://Frustrated gabe

    This whole issue is irritating. On the one hand, I have gay friends- very dear gay friends who have been with their partners for many years, who love one another as much as any straight couple I’ve ever met. However, I am a Christian, and I refuse to deny my faith in the face of issues such as this. As much as I feel for my gay friends, and their sadness at not being able to legally commit to one another, I have to stand firm in my beliefs. My gay friends know this, and they accept how I feel. They know I don’t look down on them (like I should even have to say that- who am I?), and I certainly don’t hate them. However, being a Christian has turned a few gay people away from me; as soon as they find out I’ve given my life to Christ and try my best to live for Him, they instantly think I’ll be shoving a Bible in their face and preaching hellfire and brimstone to them. And I can’t blame them. Many Christians haven’t loved like Jesus loved; haven’t reached out and bridged the gap like Jesus so often did regarding cultural and religious barriers. I can’t blame gays for being turned off by the stereotypical Christian. But neither can I allow what my God has put in place to be trampled on- marriage is sacred, between man and woman, and must remain so. As for me, I’ll continue to love those who have been kind enough to share their friendship with me-gay or straight-and love them like our Savior taught us to love.

  • Moonasredasblood

    You people ALWAYS say keep religion out of this issue – you really want religion out of this Proposition 8 argument, huh? FINE! Let’s take religion out of it and argue from a leftist, atheist perspective that I’m sure your liberal palates can appreciate.

    You remember the “Law” of Evolution that you successfully force down our children’s throats every day in school, right? Well, exactly what biological purpose do homosexuals serve? Where do they promote the “fitness” of our specie? How do they propogate the progeny into the next generation? Your own “Lord Darwin” predicted that natural selection should progressively eliminate confounding factors such as homosexuality that would reduce individual female fecundity and overall specie fitness. DARWIN DESPISED HOMOSEXUALS. Look it up.

    You say that this gay marriage issue is not going to be forced on our children in public school? Take the above policy example as a historic parallel – you liberals wanted Creationism and/or Intelligent Design out of the public school curriculum completely and want the “Law” of Evolution taught as the only possible explanation. You’ve succeeded. Congratulations. Now why should I believe you even for a nanosecond that my “opt-out” right as a parent won’t be taken away “for the common good”?

    You people are hypocrites – “stay out of my bedroom Uncle Sam”, but when you want your agenda force fed to society you are all too eager to use the government and the courts to try and forcefully change society.

    This whole homosexual movement is based on a psychological dysfunction of your sexual identity, as well as the simple fact that homosexuals “don’t feel loved enough” by society. Listen, just because your Daddy did’t love his queer son / daughter doesn’t give you the right to legislate from the bench so that you can now force society to become your surrogate parental figure in your adult life. Love is not love if it is taken, under threat of legal penalty, or through indoctrination of our children in the social incubators you call the public school system. You people used to hide in closets and now you hide behind the activist courts to further your agenda. Just take a look at Canada and how they treat priests and pastors who dare to quote the Bible’s “homophobic hate speech.” And you say it won’t happen here – yeah, right.

    Thank God the conservatives still own most of the guns. When the revolution comes we’ll be ready. Will you?

  • Moonwasredasblood

    You people ALWAYS say keep religion out of this issue – you really want religion out of this Proposition 8 argument, huh? FINE! Let’s take religion out of it and argue from a leftist, atheist perspective that I’m sure your liberal palates can appreciate.

    You remember the “Law” of Evolution that you successfully force down our children’s throats every day in school, right? Well, exactly what biological purpose do homosexuals serve? Where do they promote the “fitness” of our specie? How do they propogate the progeny into the next generation? Your own “Lord Darwin” predicted that natural selection should progressively eliminate confounding factors such as homosexuality that would reduce individual female fecundity and overall specie fitness. DARWIN DESPISED HOMOSEXUALS. Look it up.

    You say that this gay marriage issue is not going to be forced on our children in public school? Take the above policy example as a historic parallel – you liberals wanted Creationism and/or Intelligent Design out of the public school curriculum completely and want the “Law” of Evolution taught as the only possible explanation. You’ve succeeded. Congratulations. Now why should I believe you even for a nanosecond that my “opt-out” right as a parent won’t be taken away “for the common good”?

    You people are hypocrites – “stay out of my bedroom Uncle Sam”, but when you want your agenda force fed to society you are all too eager to use the government and the courts to try and forcefully change society.

    This whole homosexual movement is based on a psychological dysfunction of your sexual identity, as well as the simple fact that homosexuals “don’t feel loved enough” by society. Listen, just because your Daddy did’t love his queer son / daughter doesn’t give you the right to legislate from the bench so that you can now force society to become your surrogate parental figure in your adult life. Love is not love if it is taken, under threat of legal penalty, or through indoctrination of our children in the social incubators you call the public school system. You people used to hide in closets and now you hide behind the activist courts to further your agenda. Just take a look at Canada and how they treat priests and pastors who dare to quote the Bible’s “homophobic hate speech.” And you say it won’t happen here – yeah, right.

    Thank God the conservatives still own most of the guns. When the revolution comes we’ll be ready. Will you?

  • http://www.jamesehlers.com James Ehlers

    First off, I’m a hetero male, and have all kinds of love for all gay humans. even though I voted no on Prop 8, I definitely feel that the gay community has overreated with the passing of 8. I don’t believe CA voters were misinformed or deceived. I believe that the majority of people prefer marriage as an institution in this country to be between a man and a woman. If you are gay and want to be married, I completely believe that you should be able to do so. However, I believe that beyond government and politics, the idea of marriage is something that stems from the heart, and is created when people are deeply in love with each other. Prop 8 truly has nothing to do with taking rights away from homosexuals. If any 2 people in this country are in love and want to be married, there is nothing that can stop them from holding a ceremony with their friends, family, and marital representative. With that said, I believe there is no reason for the claim that gays’ rights have been taken away. The majority has voted and want California to only ‘legally’ recognize marriage between a man and a woman. If you’re gay and have a civil union with your partner, in California you have the same rights as a heterosexual ‘married’ couple. I just keep thinking how much more marriage is about the heart than what the government can ‘official’ declare you as. My parents were married in 1981 and definitely got married because they loved each other more than anything. Regardless of whatever the state of California thought of them, they would have been married in their church regardless. Marriage shouldn’t be about what politics say it should be; marriage is about the condition of your heart and should be regarded in that way.

    Peace, James

  • HappyinCA

    Ah, a post “yes” on prop 8 world. How nice it is to see the people who lost take it in stride and go home. Oh wait, we’re seeing protests and street closures, signs, and hatred towards religious communities for speaking out and asking for support on a proposition with religous undertones. Shame on the gay community for such behavior. Stolen “Yes on 8″ signs, cars vandalized that have “Yes on 8″ stickers. We’re in support of the keeping marriage as a sacrament, something untouchable by the gay community.
    If you don’t like Prop 8, move. California has now twice voiced it’s approval for keeping marriage sacred. Respect the voice of the majority for once instead of sticking your middle fingers up and thinking your voice is louder than the rest of us.

  • God

    Dear children,

    I write to you today to tell you how sad I am in your recent endeavors. It is apparent that these many years past that my wisdom has been lost on you as I watch you create your own laws. You carry my books that I so diligently whispered into the ears of my faithful to write for you and yet you so eagerly sway those words to suit your own “religion” instead of the one I set forth for you.

    Did I not teach you my cherished faithful to “judge not least you be judge?” Did I not have my son, your brother, tell you “Ye without sin cast the first stone?” Outside of free will – Love is my greatest gift to you. It was my dream that you would care about and care for each other in good times and ill. That you would not take from each other a life or a wife and yet you find your ways to ignore the wisdoms I bestowed upon you.

    I say to you do you not remember what put you out of my garden. Did not listening to me have something to do with it? Nowhere in my book do I condone or ask you to hate another. Do you not have other concerns that your energy and time should be spent on? Think of the sick, the poor, the hungry – do they not deserve your time more than who loves whom?

    You spend a great deal of your time trying to make everyone just like you – but it is your differences that matter to me as your father. I care not how you look, how you talk, or how you love or how you worship me. I care that you do not misinterpret my books of wisdom.

    All who bestow love on the world through their care and consideration, all who love unconditionally and faithfully another are welcome in my home. I do not ask that you do the same but I ask that you understand that to me the sin of hatred is a far greater sin and so is pride. It is my book my ways not your interpretation of them that matters.

    With so much war, disease and poverty – do not take my gift of love from another. Because I say to you again Judge Not Least You Be Judged.

    Your father forever,
    God

  • Yes on Prop 8!

    I suppose 52% of all California voters are bigots then, right? Homosexuality is unnatural and is a disorder. Just because you feel an attraction to someone and or even love that person doesn’t give you the right to marry! There are plenty of pedophiles that feel an attraction to children and would probably like to marry one, but that is wrong, just like homosexuality is wrong. It is a behavior that should not be condoned, and by allowing homosexuals to marry would be condoning a behavior that is neither right nor natural. This is not similar to the civil rights movement. It is a disgrace to compare the two. Obviously the majority of African Americans would agree with this because 70% voted in favor of prop 8.

  • Not Necessary

    I am 46 years old and 100% woman but Satan lured me into “falling in love” with a lesbian 10 years ago. I was in that relationship for 5 years! During those 5 years we lived together and I even left my husband and my children. Even when I was in that relationship, I knew it was SICK and DISGUSTING and I was so ashamed of myself! I knew it was wrong and “getting married” to her was NOT going to happen….EVER! THE GOD OF ISRAEL IS ALIVE and HE will show his wrath to this sick sick society soon! YES YES YES ON PROP 8! Put that in your twisted head!

  • Todd Raine

    Let me pose a few questions:
    What if California legalized gay marriages and a gay couple wanted to get married in a church that has beliefs that homosexuality is wrong and denies the request? Now this gay couple says they are being discriminated against. That would be correct. Would you accept that stand? Because anyone can discriminate against something they may see as wrong. Would you rally behind that church in support of their constitutional rights? Or do you think the gay couple has a right through the court system to force the church to give them access and membership to the church for the wedding even if it violates the churches and its members rights to freedom of religion. Why can’t we discriminate against what we don’t like? Don’t accept? And don’t want? What about religious organized adoption agencies that deny adoption to gay couples because of their religious beliefs. Do you think they should have a right to those beliefs or should the courts be allowed to force those churches to violate their religious beliefs and allow gay couples to adopt?
    I believe in tolerance. I have many friends and acquaintances that are gay and I fought for their rights in the 80’s to not be harassed or assaulted because of their affinity orientation. I stood at the wall of freedom for 8 years in the US Army to ensure that all Americans could maintain their Constitutional rights. I feel everyone should have their inalienable rights. During the election campaign I did notice that the “NO on 8” demonstrators did not feel that way. They felt that they had a right to step on to my property and deny me my freedom of speech by vandalizing my signs or taking them. They yelled profanities at my wife and children standing on the corner and would spit at and throw things, just because we wanted to exercise our freedom of speech. I noticed that their signs said “STOP THE HATE”, but the only hate I saw exhibited, was by the “NO on 8” demonstrators. Californians voted yes on Prop 22 and now yes on Prop 8. It should be clear where people’s beliefs are. We exercised the full measure of Democracy and voted not to allow, what most people consider a sexual deviancy, gay marriages. We should all be tolerant. Tolerance does not mean we have to change our beliefs and views to be kind and cordial to gays. I feel the gay community should exercise tolerance. They should accept us non gays as their neighbors and not harass us as they did Thursday in Los Angeles. They are angry that Christian churches rallied for their inalienable rights, yet the gay community says “SHAME ON YOU”. I say shame on you gays and supporters!! You don’t want equality, you want preference!! You want rights that allow you to violate the first amendment. Think long and hard. There is a reason why the first amendment is phrased in this order:
     Free Exercise of Religion
     Freedom of Speech
     Freedom of the Press
     Right to Peaceably Assemble
     Right to Petition the Government for a Redress of Grievances.
    What is interesting is that the gay community and its supporters have tried very had to deny every one of these rights during the campaign. What I fear most is that the gay community will continue to demand rights of preference not equality. I fear that the public will lash out back at them as did the hate organizations did in the 80’s. All I have to say is watch out whose buttons you push. People like you and me will come hear to these blogs to bear our grievances, but less educated people will eventually pick up bottles and bats.

  • Todd Raine

    Let me pose a few questions:
    What if California legalized gay marriages and a gay couple wanted to get married in a church that has beliefs that homosexuality is wrong and denies the request? Now this gay couple says they are being discriminated against. That would be correct. Would you accept that stand? Because anyone can discriminate against something they may see as wrong. Would you rally behind that church in support of their constitutional rights? Or do you think the gay couple has a right through the court system to force the church to give them access and membership to the church for the wedding even if it violates the churches and its members rights to freedom of religion. Why can’t we discriminate against what we don’t like? Don’t accept? And don’t want? What about religious organized adoption agencies that deny adoption to gay couples because of their religious beliefs. Do you think they should have a right to those beliefs or should the courts be allowed to force those churches to violate their religious beliefs and allow gay couples to adopt?
    I believe in tolerance. I have many friends and acquaintances that are gay and I fought for their rights in the 80’s to not be harassed or assaulted because of their affinity orientation. I stood at the wall of freedom for 8 years in the US Army to ensure that all Americans could maintain their Constitutional rights. I feel everyone should have their inalienable rights. During the election campaign I did notice that the “NO on 8” demonstrators did not feel that way. They felt that they had a right to step on to my property and deny me my freedom of speech by vandalizing my signs or taking them. They yelled profanities at my wife and children standing on the corner and would spit at and throw things, just because we wanted to exercise our freedom of speech. I noticed that their signs said “STOP THE HATE”, but the only hate I saw exhibited, was by the “NO on 8” demonstrators. Californians voted yes on Prop 22 and now yes on Prop 8. It should be clear where people’s beliefs are. We exercised the full measure of Democracy and voted not to allow, what most people consider a sexual deviancy, gay marriages. We should all be tolerant. Tolerance does not mean we have to change our beliefs and views to be kind and cordial to gays. I feel the gay community should exercise tolerance. They should accept us non gays as their neighbors and not harass us as they did Thursday in Los Angeles. They are angry that Christian churches rallied for their inalienable rights, yet the gay community says “SHAME ON YOU”. I say shame on you gays and supporters!! You don’t want equality, you want preference!! You want rights that allow you to violate the first amendment. Think long and hard. There is a reason why the first amendment is phrased in this order:
     Free Exercise of Religion
     Freedom of Speech
     Freedom of the Press
     Right to Peaceably Assemble
     Right to Petition the Government for a Redress of Grievances.
    What is interesting is that the gay community and its supporters have tried very had to deny every one of these rights during the campaign. What I fear most is that the gay community will continue to demand rights of preference not equality. I fear that the public will lash out back at them as did the hate organizations did in the 80’s. All I have to say is watch out whose buttons you push. People like you and me will come hear to these blogs to bear our grievances, but less educated people will eventually pick up bottles and bats.

  • Steve L

    Democracy prevailed. Majority ruled. People have the right to define marriage and did not see any reason to change centuries of tradition to give special rights to people on the basis they have sex within their own gender. I get the fact that people feel it’s discrimination but there is no protected class based on sexual orientation in the U.S. Constitution and rightly so. It only exists in some states where people have oddly voted to extend such protection. And, of course, constitutions and laws are made by the people to reflect the society’s values and are subject to change. I proudly voted yes on Prop 8 to change the constitution. No religious group influenced me and I find it hilarious that anti-Prop 8 people have to search for such rationalization. How could people possibly do this? It must be hate. I don’t hate gays – I couldn’t care less who they have sex with but I don’t feel compelled to change my society to afford them special rights based on who they have sex with. People voted for Prop 8 because they wanted marriage to be between a man and a woman -the traditional, normal family unit. That’s it. Live with it. Men cannot marry men, women cannot marry women. The people have spoken and, in my opinion, spoken well.

  • WRB

    I gather from the comments above that the pro-Prop 8/anti-gay marriage stance is now “we won, get over it.” Unfortunately, just because a (very slim) majority of voters voted in favor of “separate but equal” does not and will not end the struggle or settle the issue.

    Separate but equal and other Jim Crow laws were the will of the majority in the South for many many years, based in part on religious convictions that the races should not mix. Allow me to quote from a Virginia court decision upholding that state’s ban on interracial marriage 40 years ago:

    “Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And, but for the interference with his arrangement, there would be no cause for such marriage. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.”

    Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1967)

    Most of us, religious or not, now see the profound error of this statement and the sad legacy it represents for our country. We are however, I am sad to say, now having the same debate again, albeit in a different context. But I believe fair minded people who truly believe in freedom for EVERYONE will ultimately prevail and “separate but equal” — a very un-American idea — will be swept away once again.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0FiCxZKuv8

  • Hyrum

    Homosexual marriage was granted by the vote of 4-3 judges, not by the vote of the California people. Those who supported Proposition 8 were not supporting taking away “rights” of homosexual couples. They were making a value judgment on what was best for society, and what the legal definition of marriage should be. For thousands of years, marriage between a man and a woman has been shown to prolong the human race. :) By arguing that a homosexual relationship should be allowed to attain the status of marriage based on the free practice of religion is a flawed argument. Obviously, the legal recognition of such a relationship affects everyone, as it effectually says that such a relationship is a positive benefit to our society— and will therefore affect what our children learn and believe.

  • Gabriel

    First I just want to say that I love you, whom are reading this message, just as Jesus loves us. The purpose of the message Jesus came to earth to share was that of salvation with a foundation of unconditional love. It was a new covenant he established for the forgiveness of sins so that eternal salvation could be granted upon us by his grace and love. The very last commandment that Jesus shared with his disciples was, “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34). The love God has for his children is an unconditional love, no matter what choices you may have made in your past. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 we find the following: “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” Immediately after this we find in 1 Corinthians 6:11: “And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” We are all accountable to God in the day of judgment. Many people think they are right just because they are heterosexuals but the bible sees any sexually immoral behavior in the same way, be it any depravation of sexuality (homosexuality, adultery, pedophilia, prostitution, etc). This text also puts thieves, the greedy, drunkards, slanderers, and swindlers in the same category. Do not be deceived, you are not right just because you are heterosexual. We must all love each other in the way God loves us and live our lives in line with his instruction. The overall message is to turn your life to God. Through God ALL things are possible. God loves us all no matter who we are, where we’re from, what we’ve done, and even what we’re going to do. When we acknowledge God as our lord and savior and repent of our sins, we are completely cleansed of all of our sins. “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. (Luke 9:23). All Christians have something they are challenged with (our own cross) that we need to work on daily, as we are all sinners. I love you and I pray for your wellbeing, growth, and an abundance of blessings in every area of your life, in the name of Jesus.

  • http://sempercogitant.blogspot.com/ Semper Cogitant

    One serious problem with your arguement is this:

    You believe that marriage comes from the state. From your blog I get the impression that you believe in the supremacy of the state. Marriage existed long before the state, and has existed under every state we humans have made over thousands of years, and in times and places where no state at all has existed.

    At no time, in any state, at any time before the last couple decades, has marriage ever included “gay marriage”. The state has denied gay couples nothing at all, it is not something that they ever had at all in any state sanctioned way.

    That being said, here’s my arguement:

    Who really cares? If a gay couple feels that it will somehow validate their relationship to have the state recognize it with a word and to pay more taxes (if both work) then let them. It will not make their relations stronger or somehow more valid, only the commitment between two people can do that. If God has an opinion about the validity of relationships or marraiges the states approval of those relationships will ahve no effect at all on God’s opinion or actions in the matter. If people ahve opinions about such relationships, the states approval of those relationships will have no effect on those opinions. Whether or not a gay couple calls them selves partners, lovers, or man and husband has no effect on anyones opinion about them, and has no effect on the strength or validity of their relationship at all.

    So I don’t disagree with you vote at all, but your primary reasoning for it is, in my opinion, dangerous. Your belief in the supremacy of the state, that marriage or anything else) is somehow given to us by the state is frightening, and unamerican, even antoamerican.

    THis is the American view:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    Notice it doesn’t say rights are endowed by the state? The state does not give rights, it can only take them away. Of course your arguement and the fact that you consiously chose to move to not just Califonia, but to San Francisco, tells much about you and your politics. It is likely from the evidence I see here that your views are far closer to Marx, Stalin and Mao than to the great men that sent that letter to King George 232 years ago.

  • EBdM

    “At no time, in any state, at any time before the last couple decades, has marriage ever included “gay marriage”. The state has denied gay couples nothing at all, it is not something that they ever had at all in any state sanctioned way”

    I have to respond to the above comment which is factually and historically incorrect.
    I should begin by saying that marriage has had a variety of definitions depending on geography, era and social norms. In the past 100 years we´ve seen marriage almost entirely redefined from a contract in which a man held absolute power over his wife (being entirely in control of her wealth, and sometimes even permitted to beat her or rape her without consequence) to one of equal partnership- that in which the woman holds the exact same rights as the male.

    Not long ago the definition of marriage in America was: The Union of One White Man and One White Woman.
    Fortunately the people (or the courts in that case) redefined marriage once again.

    From a historical perspective we find that there are a number of variations of gay marriage found around the world, and one need not go far since tribal native americans have had a form of same-sex marriage for centuries. The same goes for several African tribl communities, apart from some in Asia and even ancient Europe. The mormon definition of marriage of 100 years ago included 1 man and 1 OR MORE women- as do the definitions of muslim communities and others throughout the world.

    Already today several countries around the world have created laws to enforce the right of gays to unite in marriage, many more are following with Norway implementing its law in January and Sweden in the first semester of the coming year.
    America is not an island. The real question is why does America treat some of its citizens worse than other countries do?
    Why do American gays have less rights than Canadian gays or Spanish gays or Belgian gays or even South African gays?
    I suppose for the same reason American blacks had less rights up until the 70´s than British, French or even Brazilian blacks…

  • Christopher

    I personally have experienced attractions toward both sexes during my adolescence. However, as a conservative Christian, I also knew from the start that my sexual attraction to members of my own sex was no more natural or a part of what God wants for my life than if I had been sexually attracted to animals or children. So I have made the choice not to pursue these attractions, and indeed to treat them as temptations in the same way I would consider violent urges, or the perceived need to overspend money as temptations. I have moved on since this experience, and have no problem supporting initiatives like proposition 8 as it would encourage immorality. I would support anti-prostitution laws for the same reason I would support proposition 8: They help to reduce the ease of practicing immoral acts.

    I did, however, like your second point. Gay marriage is no more damaging to the idea of marriage than divorce is. They are *both* damaging. Except in one way: Divorce for the reason of adultery (ie, the one cheated on gets a divorce) is an honorable end to a defective marriage. Here the divorcing party is not at fault for the failure of the marriage, and so has not contributed to the detriment of the idea of marriage, as it wouldn’t make any sense to force the marriage to continue after such a betrayal. In a similar manner, abuse is a valid reason for divorce and does not constitute a detriment to the idea of marriage, in fact these cases enhance it by showing how a marriage ought *not* to be.

  • EBdM

    Christopher,
    What “your God” wants for “your life” is exclusively between you and Him. You and none of the other people who believe in YOUR god have the right to impose those beliefs on anyone else.

    How would you feel if Muslims or Polygamists told you that you have to live according to THEIR beliefs?

    I find it shocking and truly offensive that anyone could even begin to compare homosexuality with “violent urges” that need to be controlled. That´s an unfortunate and outright ignorant characterization.

    Let me give you an example by imagining roles were reversed and it was the marriage between Christians that was under attack- in that event as someone who respects the right of adults to make their own decisions in civil society, I might say:

    I would like to offer my full support to permitting marriage between Christians. Despite many in the world not warming to Christians and finding their customs peculiar, Christianity is not a disease, they are people and must be afforded the same rights as everyone else. I am fully aware that many practices and characteristics of Christians, such as the pathologically paranoid attitude they promulgate regarding sex may seem bizarre to many. Perhaps one could even make an argument of public health and safety due to their dangerous and deliberate disregard to birth control and condoms. But they are still human beings, capable of deciding who they love and with whom they wish to share their lives.

    I understand that amongst their practices, there are customs such as the public exhibition of sculptures and paintings of tortured and dead people that may be seriously disturbing to many people around the world. However, we have to keep in mind that these are simply sculptures and pictures, and they don’t in fact nowadays torture people, even if this religion has a history replete with violence and oppression. None of the previous points characterize sufficient evidence to keep Christians from being permitted to marry.

    I know one could argue that a marriage between Christians is not a real marriage, because for them it is a form of ritual before their God, instead of a legally binding contract between two equal spouses. Since the children outside marriage are seriously condemned by the church (who came up with the word Bastard to describe them), some could consider that to allow Christian marriage could increase the number of marriages created by social pressure forcing many into an early marriage when men and women are still
    unprepared emotionally and financially to form a successful relationship and family or marriages for the simple search of sex (prohibited by this religion outside of marriage), leading to the creation of unwanted families, unnecessary abortions, the repression of women and possibly even domestic violence.

    It is necessary to remember that these are not things that happen uniquely in Christian families, since non-Christians have a difficult time trying to understand the most basic practices of Christians, we should not
    judge their motivations. On the other hand, saying that we should call marriage between Christians by another name, is nothing more than trying to swerve the debate into an unkind form of semantics, how about Muslims, or Mexicans or doctors, or people with pinkish white skin with freckles? Should we have a specific name for marriage within each of those groups? Perhaps we could call the family of a widowed parent a “wamily”. Although in this case a marriage would be between Christians, a marriage is a marriage, and a family is a family.

    After that reference to family let us move on to another burning issue: I also support allowing Christians to adopt children. There is widespread belief that the children of Christians are indoctrinated into their religious customs, making adoption by Christians a contentious issue. Whereas presumably the child of a teacher or homosexual will generally not necessarily follow in their parents footsteps, the children of religious households are generally obliged to participate in religious practices, some being permanently influenced by religious mythology. This mythology, some say, is a very dangerous aspect of Christians adopting children. In their weekly practice of communion there is the recurrent simulation of eating human flesh and drinking human blood (catholics), a practice that may appear barbaric and primitive to most people, glorifying cannibalism (a crime in most of the western world) and making it seem to be an ordinary and accepted practice.

    It is important to state that in Catholicism this practice is not to be taken as symbolic, to Catholics there is a supernatural occurrence in communion where “hosts” (bread) are transformed into flesh and wine into blood, while most other Christians practice cannibalism only symbolically. These factors could lead many to believe that Christians are ignorant and therefore unprepared to adopt children. But in a democracy they have the right to believe in whichever concepts they choose, fictional or otherwise.

    I know some will be scandalized by my next statement and I’m sure some many will say: “What, Christians adopting children? But those children could become Christian !”. Although it is certain that children of Christians have a much greater probability of becoming Christians (as opposed to for example the children of a teacher or a homosexual), I insist we still have to believe that Christians are people like everyone else. In spite of the opinions of some and statements by some extremist groups, there are no conclusive studies that say Christian parents are worse prepared to educate a child, or that the religiously slanted atmosphere of a Christian home is a negative influence for children. In addition, adoption courts judge each case individually, and it is indeed their work to determine the suitability of the parents. Despite the opinions of some sectors, I believe that we have the obligation of allowing Christians both marriage and adoption. Exactly as we do to doctors, teachers, Germans, and people with pinkish white skin and freckles.

    A great many people in the world are concerned with Christianity and its effects on society today. With questions of marriage, liberalism and culture wars at the top of the headlines everywhere; We have to observe matters fairly and not apply special standards of examination to one single group, that would be the very definition of discrimination.

  • Daniel

    To everyone who is upset regarding the outcome:

    This is a democracy. Regardless of the issue, the majority wins in voting. ALWAYS. Don’t fight what is normal. If you can’t handle civil unions, then leave a democracy.

  • Rihta

    Apparently, Seventh-Day Adventist Church opposes gay rights.

    The Seventh-day Adventist Church (along with Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses) argue against gay rights and gay marriage issues holding that religious liberty is only concerned with the first four of the Ten Commandments, or one’s obligations to God.

    When a gay marriage bill came before the California legislature in April, 2004, Adventist church members were urged to contact their representatives and voice their opposition. In “The Liberty Blog” the religious liberty director for the North American Division of the Adventist church argued against the proposed federal “Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007,” suggesting it could have an indirect impact on free speech, would give special protection, would be unnecessary since local laws already provide protection against hate crimes, and could lead to marginalizing those who oppose homosexual practice. In the September/October, 2004, issue of church periodical, Liberty, which was devoted to the issue of gay marriage, another religious liberty director called for the church not to remain silent in opposing gay rights.

    Most recently, the Seventh-day Adventist Church has strongly asserted in it’s churches that it opposes all gay rights including gay marriage. In doing so, it has encouraged members to not only vote for Proposition 8, but to also financially support any and all efforts to oppose gay marriage rights.

  • Sandy

    Has anybody thought of gathering signatures for a proposition to limit marriage to ONLY couples who are able/willing to procreate? It would never make it to the ballot, but might open some eyes and minds as to what marriage really means from a legal standpoint.

  • Sandy

    Oh, and Daniel….we live in a REPUBLIC, not a democracy…check it out! Precisely why the courts are in place to protect minorities against tyranny of the majority. Prop 8 couldn’t be a better example. I served my country honorably in the US Navy; graduated from college (I have two degrees); pay a huge amount of taxes (that’s another irritation); and am a contributing member of my community. Why should religious views dictate who I am allowed to marry? Under the law, marriage is a civil issue that should be applied equally to all citizens who wish to participate. Procreation is not a prerequisite for marriage. No church is under any obligation to recognize any marriage for any reason it deems proper to do so. By the same token, any church can recognize any marriage it chooses to. The argument of being able to marry a child or an animal is so ridiculous it’s beyond absurdity. Children and animals are incapable of giving consent. Why don’t we start a signature drive to ban people who eat garlic from public places? I would also want to include people who’ve eaten beans for lunch…

  • http://www.iamnotbitterbut.blogspot.com Nicole Hellene

    Marriage is not a religious institution, it has been established through case law that it is a fundamental civil right. It’s very simple. Prop 8 seeks to take away a civil right from one group of people that would otherwise have been afforded to them if they were another group of people. That’s like taking away womens right to vote that would otherwise be afforded to them if they were men.

    The church is claiming religious discrimination on the grounds of freedom of speech, hate speech is NOT protected by the Constitution. The church is not allowed to speak out against Jews even though there are a lot of passages against Jews in their bible, why should the church be allowed to speak out against gays? They are just mad because they are running out of people they can legally bash. And Jesus said we should love thy neighbor.

    Prop 8 is very easy to describe: People are confusing a moral issue with a legal issue. Luckily lawsuits have been filed and the ACLU is heavily involved. Here’s one I found online so far:

    http://justinmclachlan.com/08/11/first-prop-8-lawsuit-filed/

  • CLOUDY IN SUNNY CA

    As i see it, the constitution states we must “separate church and state”. It also says “equal rights for all”. So, as an anti-8 Californian we have just voted in an OXYMORON. Does that mean that over have of Californians are MORONS????

  • http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=56979058 Joey

    I’m proud to be gay and challenge all you haters for a cage match!!!!!

    http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=56979058

  • http://www.lanovaz.org/daniel/tinyurl/prop8 Daniel Lanovaz

    My essay entitled “Tyranny of the Majority: Plato on Proposition 8″ is here:

    http://www.lanovaz.org/daniel/tinyurl/prop8

    The artwork is mine.

  • http://www.myspace.com/bitterandsuhweet Nicole

    Prop 8 supporters are ignorant and unreasonable.

    It was never and will never be the government’s right to take away a person’s freedom to be committed to the one they love.

    Thats the basic fact of the matter.

    YOU have no right to tell another human being what is MORAL or NOT.
    Because two men or two women marrying IS NOT harming you in ANY way.

    And those who claim an attraction towards the same sex is an “evil temptation” or “violent urge” as i have read; Loving or caring for another human being is NOT an evil temptation. Want to talk about God? God would not condemn you for loving another human being.

    If you beilieve in God you believe in Love
    All kinds of love, not just the ones you are familiar with.

    Stop letting your fear of change seriously hurt people only seeking to be with the one they love most and want to spend the rest of their life with.

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