greenxyzcannonball: (bitch slap)
[personal profile] greenxyzcannonball
One of my favorite bloggers, Yarn Harlot, mentioned in her annual Canada Day post, that one of the things that made her proud about her country is that same-sex marriages are legal.
I'm going to give my opinion here, with the rider that I welcome thoughtful comments (with citations, please) but not flames. Click if you wish to proceed.

Personally, I don't think anyone should be denied rights because of who they are. I don't think homosexuality is a choice, nor do I think it makes a person "defective" or "disordered". Frankly I think it's right up there with not being able to curl your tongue into a tube. I really don't like it when people justify their dislike of other people with scripture, whether it's due to their homosexuality or not. It is people who do this sort of thing that has turned me away from the faith of Christianity. I feel that no truly loving God would condone hating others.

In the marriage debate: I feel that the best solution is to use civil unions only.
Last time I checked, marriage was considered a sacrament - that is, something administered by the church. So marriage by definition, is a religious rite. Now when this country was founded, most of Europe was ruled by monarchies following the doctrine of "divine right" and also following a long tradition of religious institutions doubling as legal institutions, due to the spread of Catholicism by the Romans from the 4th century on.
Amendment 1 states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." This says to me that laws are to be made and administered without respect to religion - what church or if you go should not matter in a legal sense. This is the part of the "Bill of Rights" that is quoted for separation of church and state. Obviously our forefathers thought this was important, probably because the United States of America was first settled by people seeking...religious freedom. Granted, Christianity was the dominant religion in most of Western Europe, which is the basis for our forefathers' culture and education, so naturally in expressing the seriousness of their intent, they would refer to the most powerful imagery they knew - that of God. Their firm intention to establish a new country needed the strongest language they could use - the Judeo-Christian God was symbolic of power in almost every area of Western Europe and especially Great Britain.
By the way, all of you who are going to point out the "In God we Trust" motto on US currency...that wasn't put there until the 1950s - the Cold War - when US citizens wanted to distinguish themselves from "godless heathen communist Russia". This always struck me as odd, considering Jesus himself is supposed to have said "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's [that is, the money bearing his likeness]" with the implication that God was not impressed with money. So why would God want us to put His name on something He didn't want to be associated with in the first place?
I really don't think the creators of the Constitution meant for morality to be judged on the basis of one religion. That is why we have laws. Even among different denominations, there are differing opinions on what is "okay" and what is not. Laws codify the existing mores in a society so that religion isn't used to judge. If you break the law, you will perform some kind of retribution to society. Sinning carries a different weight; it's between the sinner and their creator, rather than the perpetrator and their society. Public vs personal.
If people feel that their religion/denomination tells them that homosexuality is wrong, that is up to them. Everyone is entitled to believe as they will. What I don't understand is that those who feel that homosexuality is wrong, feel that those who are homosexual or who are not against homosexuality need to hear that they are wrong and "going to hell". Damnation is really between oneself and one's own deity and/or savior. I don't see that the trump has resounded and any divine being has designated religious policemen. It's not needed.

So the solution I propound is this: civil unions that allow the partners all the nice bits of marriage: next-of-kin benefits, joint insurance, joint tax, right to adopt, immigration/emigration, citizenship, and anything else I forgot to put in there. All people have the right to enter into a civil union with any other consenting adult. If someone wants a marriage, they can speak to their priest/pastor/minister about that - because that's religious and as such should not come under the government's jurisdiction.
Also, if someone's still going on about "but marriage is defined as", please see also "common-law marriage". In other words people who live together in a long-term romantic relationship are considered to be de facto "married". I'd like to hear how common-law marriage excludes homosexuals, since that's how most partnerships live.

So the TL;DR version: Civil unions instead of marriage and make marriage a religious rite-as it originally was-rather than a legal document.


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September 2012

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