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Old 11-07-2009, 10:53 AM   #121
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i think people are concerned that they won't be able to kick faggots around, even if that's not a consciously formed thought..
Why drop the discussion to this level? This really doesn't help.

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but you're right, in a way. gay marriage = broad social approval of homosexuality. .
And that is why, in my opinion, the voters are turning down gay marriage. I think that most believe that homsexuals already have their civil rights protected under the current laws and that civil unions offer the same priviledges as marriage. They do not see the need to pass a new law that does not add to these rights but is a mere social statement.

But it does seem likely that eventually voters will endorse gay marriage so I wouldn't get too worried.

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AEON, do you know any gay couples? i mean that as a serious question.
No, I do not.

And for the record, this forum is the only place where I really think about/discuss this issue. When I read through the posts, I usually find that conservative opinions (on any topic) are under-represented. I simply like a good discussion - and this is a hot topic around voting season - so sometimes I dive in.

Unfortunately, the discussions here often devolve into personal attacks against those that have opposing opinions (or are simply arguing the opposing position) - which is why I stepped away from posting for a time. Responding to a great logical premise that made me research a response (as Melon did quite often a few years back) is exciting, rewarding, and educational. Even to this day, in Bible Studies, I will argue the very points that Melon made about interpreting the segments regarding homosexuality. I am not saying I endorse them, but I do say it is “possible” to interpret these passages as teachings against specific acts and not as a broad statement against homosexuality.

I have no vendetta or active hatred toward homosexuals. I do not consider myself a bigot. I am simply a conservative male that occasionally like to discuss/debate some of the current "hot buttons."
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Old 11-07-2009, 11:20 AM   #122
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Why drop the discussion to this level? This really doesn't help.

i realize i put it in very blunt terms, but i think that this is the core of what's going on. i know this because i remember very well being a teenager and dealing with an emerging sexuality.

i think boys, in particular, are taught that part of the definition of being straight is not being gay. while that seems intuitive, i think it's a much more complex process than we might think. by denigrating and mocking and defining yourself against homosexuality, you therefore assert your heterosexuality, which subsequently further defines your gender identity. homosexuality does threaten traditional norms of gender conduct, i do understand that.

this is insanely complex, and hard to get into in any sort of depth here. but the closest parallel i can find is sexism. men also define themselves as men by how they are different (and, yes, better) than women. while much progress has been made in this area, and women are accorded respect by men that they would never have gotten even 30 years ago, when it comes to sex and sexuality, there are very concrete notions of "being a man" that homosexuality subverts.

believe me, i've lived this. i was an athlete in high school and college, and as a swimmer, when you live in a Speedo and shave your body twice a year, there was probably more casual homophobia to compensate for any perceived lack of masculinity on the part of a male swimmer.


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And that is why, in my opinion, the voters are turning down gay marriage. I think that most believe that homsexuals already have their civil rights protected under the current laws and that civil unions offer the same priviledges as marriage. They do not see the need to pass a new law that does not add to these rights but is a mere social statement.

firstly, this isn't true. in some states, gay people cannot adopt. in some states, it is perfectly legal to fire someone for being gay, to deny housing to someone because they are gay. there are protections afforded to women, minorities, and various religious groups that are not afforded to gay people. very real discrimination still exists.

what marriage would do is instantly remove any of the (yes, bigoted) reasons for said discrimination.

civil unions exist in some states, but not everywhere, and there's no uniform set of rights. what happened in Washington last Tuesday, for example, was a law passed that strengthened the state's already existing civil unions to make them essentially equal in rights to a marriage. while that is certainly good news for gay couples in Washington, it does beg the question as to why we need to create a totally separate category.

it really, really is the same argument that predicated desegregation in the public schools. the blacks had their schools. filled with black students with black teachers. the had books and desks and pencils and paper. why desegregate? they are, on paper, "equal" to white schools? it's the exact same thing here.

what marriage equality would do is eliminate this entirely separate category of relationship. conservatives talk about reducing government, making it simpler, increasing liberty, etc. doesn't the creation of civil unions needlessly complicate a very simple thing? if gay people were allowed civil marriage, they would be subject to the same laws as straight people. no need to create anything new.

*that* is the genuinely conservative position.



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But it does seem likely that eventually voters will endorse gay marriage so I wouldn't get too worried.
my guess is that by 2020, most states will have something very close to it.

certainly, the losses in CA and ME are heartbreaking. but if you compare the vote in CA in 2008 to the one in 2000, you see huge progress. i would imagine that had a vote like that happened in Maine just 10 years ago, it would have been 80% against marriage equality.

progress is slow.

the Selma boycotts were in, what, 1955? the Civil Rights Act wasn't until 1964, and civil rights were actually moving too fast even for JFK at the time.

i also wonder how the voters of AL would have voted had they been asked if black students could attend the University of Alabama.



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No, I do not.

[...]

I have no vendetta or active hatred toward homosexuals. I do not consider myself a bigot. I am simply a conservative male that occasionally like to discuss/debate some of the current "hot buttons."


i think this is fair, and i should probably be more clear.

i do not think you actively hate gay people. but by your own admission, you are ignorant. you don't know gay couples. my grandparents were all lovely people, but they were all more than a little bit racist. much of that comes from lack of exposure, and living in a time when casual racism, and dividing people up by their perceived social category, was perfectly acceptable and reinforced.

children understand gay couples instantly. there's nothing all that weird to them about Uncle Adam and Uncle Steve. it's only when that's reinforced that it's weird, or wrong, that it becomes an issue. children may notice a difference, just like they'll notice that people are from different races, but they have to be taught the historical baggage and learn the judgments. they learn when their parents avoid trick-or-treating at the house of the gay couple down the street. they learn when their peers start playing "smear the queer" and calling each other "fag" and "homo" and calling things "gay." an enormous amount of work has been done over the past 30 years educating children about sensitivity to people who are different from them -- from different races (do kids use the N-word nearly as much as the used to?) to different religions (doesn't anti-Semitism seem positively insane these days?) to even those with special needs (do we really use "retarded" anymore when we want to call someone stupid?)

work needs to be done. and the best thing that i can do is to come out, be out, talk about myself and my life, and by virtue of being myself you'll come to realize that i'm not all that different from you. certainly, yes, there are differences, but are such differences enough to create an entirely new category of relationship so that you can maintain your distinction from me? is making that distinction all that important? would we have "white marriage" or "christian marriage" or "post-menopausal marriage?"
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:06 PM   #123
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And that is why, in my opinion, the voters are turning down gay marriage. I think that most believe that homsexuals already have their civil rights protected under the current laws and that civil unions offer the same priviledges as marriage.
So, then why do you think so many voters are uninformed? Because this isn't true. Do you honestly think this, or do you think many voters just really don't care about their rights?




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I have no vendetta or active hatred toward homosexuals. I do not consider myself a bigot.
I think this is hard for some to swallow when your arguments are constantly changing. When one form of argument gets called out as bigotry or gets easily dismissed because it's wrong or inconsistant then you change your reasoning. To many this comes off as desperately grasping, and when one is grasping they don't really have a logical reason for their stance, so it comes off as personal rather than anything else.
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:39 PM   #124
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i realize i put it in very blunt terms, but i think that this is the core of what's going on. i know this because i remember very well being a teenager and dealing with an emerging sexuality.

i think boys, in particular, are taught that part of the definition of being straight is not being gay. while that seems intuitive, i think it's a much more complex process than we might think. by denigrating and mocking and defining yourself against homosexuality, you therefore assert your heterosexuality, which subsequently further defines your gender identity. homosexuality does threaten traditional norms of gender conduct, i do understand that.
Great reply. I don't have time to respond to all your points, but I think your point about gender identity is a good one and is a key component of this overall discussion.

Do you think that gender identification is important or necessary? Are blurring the lines (or even removing them) beneficial or harmful to society?

I have a son, and while I will not teach him to hate gays or disrespect women - I will encourage his development into a masculine, heterosexual male. Will he turn out that way? Most likely, but it isn't for certain. Will I still love him if runs off to join the ballet and comes home with a gay boyfriend? Of course, he's my son. However, by identifying himself as a heterosexual male (assumption, yes) he will realize one day - "I am a man, not a woman. I am a heterosexual, not a homosexual." Is this wrong or do you feel it as cold heart and archaic categorization?
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:45 PM   #125
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I will encourage his development into a masculine, heterosexual male. Will he turn out that way? Most likely, but it isn't for certain. Will I still love him if runs off to join the ballet and comes home with a gay boyfriend? Of course, he's my son. However, by identifying himself as a heterosexual male (assumption, yes) he will realize one day - "I am a man, not a woman. I am a heterosexual, not a homosexual." Is this wrong or do you feel it as cold heart and archaic categorization?
Would Jesus be considered "masculine" in North America" today? Probably not. These definitions change throughout history, sure a few remain constant, but not all...
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Old 11-07-2009, 01:59 PM   #126
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i think this is fair, and i should probably be more clear.

i do not think you actively hate gay people. but by your own admission, you are ignorant. you don't know gay couples. my grandparents were all lovely people, but they were all more than a little bit racist. much of that comes from lack of exposure, and living in a time when casual racism, and dividing people up by their perceived social category, was perfectly acceptable and reinforced.
I was looking to post this recently written editorial, because I know this topic has been talked about in here, and it looks like you've introduced the point quite well.

Independent Gay Forum - My Great-Grandmother and the Bitch-Slap Theory of Politics

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My Great-Grandmother and the Bitch-Slap Theory of Politics
November 4, 2009

by Brian Chase

My great-grandmother was a wonderful woman. Her home was one of the warmest, most comforting places I have ever been, and many of my best memories as a child revolve around her kitchen.

My great-grandmother was also a bigot. As a child, she patiently explained to me that the Ku Klux Klan was a force for good (they built schools!). She thought that Brown v. Board of Education was one of the worst events in U.S. history, equaled only by the end of mandatory school prayer. In response to a horrific string of murders of black children in Atlanta, she commented that such a thing shouldn't happen “even to children like that."

My great-grandmother was a product of her time. The odds of a working-class Southern woman born over a century ago being anything other than a bigot were slim to none, but even now it feels kind of gross and traitorous for me to acknowledge her bigotry. She clearly met any reasonable standard for the word ‘bigot’, yet applying the word to her feels disgusting.

This brings me to Rod Dreher and the bitch-slap theory of politics.

Rod recently penned a column whose central thesis was “I dares you to call me and everybody else who opposes gay marriage a bigot!” This is a classic bitch-slap tactic. “Call me a bigot and you call all those nice old ladies who voted for Prop 8 bigots too!”

The bitch-slap tactic isn’t so much an argument as a dare. As Josh Marshall eloquently explained, a political bitch-slap involves taunting an opponent in a way intended to highlight their lack of strength or courage. If the person whom you bitch-slap responds angrily, they look irrational or crazy. If they respond in a calm, measured way, they look and feel like wimps. It is a win-win for the person doing the bitch-slapping. It’s also a cheap, nasty tactic that should be recognized as such.

Rod’s argument is also, frankly, unfair to bigots. My great-grandmother didn’t have much of a chance to be anything but a bigot. Her bigotry was an accident of history, and not in any real sense a choice. Frankly, I do not blame her for what she was. I blame the politicians and writers and preachers who actually had the chance to shape her environment and chose to do so in a way that inflamed bigotry. I don’t know if those people were actually bigots. I do know that they deliberately spread the evil of bigotry, which to my mind is far more immoral.
http://ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.c...my_honor_1.php

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I'm sorry, I have loved--and love--many people in my time. Many of them were bigoted against some group, somewhere. This expectation that "good people" won't be bigots is rather amazing. I came up in a world where it was nothing to hear the word "faggot" bandied about. Where those people awful human beings? Nah. Were they bigots? Yep. And I will tell you, without a moments hesitation, that I was one of them.
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Old 11-07-2009, 03:22 PM   #127
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Would Jesus be considered "masculine" in North America" today?
I don't see why he wouldn't be.
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Old 11-07-2009, 03:50 PM   #128
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I was looking to post this recently written editorial, because I know this topic has been talked about in here, and it looks like you've introduced the point quite well.

Independent Gay Forum - My Great-Grandmother and the Bitch-Slap Theory of Politics



You Sir, Have Offended My Honor - Ta-Nehisi Coates

Which is the tactic you are referencing and/or calling out? The one that heats the debate by calling someone a bigot - or the one that heats the debate by saying they are not bigots?

Is the "bigot card" necessary at all?

By painting someone a bigot - one can completely disregard anything that person says about any issue - hence, the reason I didn't post for awhile (as well as being very busy.) Yes, I'm a big boy and I can take it - I didn't lose any sleep. But it certainly diminishes the potential to have quality discussions. It becomes a forum that should be titled "The Neanderthal Bigots vs.The Super Genius Enlightened Ones." If you think that's fun - well, I guess that's your thing. However, I tend to think that the forum is at its best when both sides of an argument are making good points and counter-points. Just my opinion.

I have learned much from you over the years, Melon. I would like to think that perhaps, at some point, you may learn something from me - this slow witted-Orange County loving-white-male-heterosexual-Christian-bigot.
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Old 11-07-2009, 04:09 PM   #129
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This argument is moot.
Then why do you keep posting on this topic more than any other person?
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Old 11-07-2009, 04:47 PM   #130
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However, I tend to think that the forum is at its best when both sides of an argument are making good points and counter-points. Just my opinion.
Here is my observation, as a straight woman:

It is easy for you to see this as an argument/counter-argument, but you are intelligent and aware enough to realize that it is a question of real-life equality for real-life people here and elsewhere. Two of my closest friends are gay men, and I have a former roommate who is a lesbian. These people have offered me their love and friendship and we've laughed, cried, studied, worked, traveled together. Their fight for equality has changed nothing about my relationship with a man. The fact that they are all able to marry legally and live their lives openly and honestly is a GOOD thing and it has not in any way diminished my heterosexual ability to do the same.

So it isn't just an academic argument. It's an issue that has far-reaching consequences for millions of people. I am sad that in your nation, you by and large choose to treat a segment of your populace as either unequal or some form of separate but equal (ie. same shit, different name). While you sit here and construct your arguments and take them to your Bible study (which is commendable in fact), life goes on for people, and if I were one of them, I could see how much of what you say and furthermore a lot of what some other forum members have said is incredibly hurtful.
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Old 11-07-2009, 05:15 PM   #131
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Here is my observation, as a straight woman:

It is easy for you to see this as an argument/counter-argument, but you are intelligent and aware enough to realize that it is a question of real-life equality for real-life people here and elsewhere..I could see how much of what you say and furthermore a lot of what some other forum members have said is incredibly hurtful.
Thank you for your thoughts - and I do see your point. And I am sorry people are hurt engaging in the discussion. But it seems impossible to make any points on the conservative side of the argument that would not upset at least some people with a personal interest in the outcome.

So where do we go from here? Not discuss the opposing side at all? I would think that people would enter a forum like this and expect some disagreement of some sort, especially on a controversial issue. As long as people remain respectful, this seems like a wonderful place to have an intelligent and lively debate.
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Old 11-07-2009, 05:28 PM   #132
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Oh sorry for my post about the VA election- I didn't know this was a gay marriage thread
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Old 11-08-2009, 01:11 AM   #133
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I don't see why he wouldn't be.
I've heard many conservative groups that talk about the "remasculinization" of Jesus, which basically mean he was a short haired manly man that really didn't talk about turning his cheek or loving his enemy...

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Then why do you keep posting on this topic more than any other person?
This is false and you know it... You also know that definition of marriage has changed throughout the centuries, so lets don't play coy. OK?
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Old 11-08-2009, 02:34 AM   #134
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[QUOTE=BVS;6510153]I've heard many conservative groups that talk about the "remasculinization" of Jesus, which basically mean he was a short haired manly man that really didn't talk about turning his cheek or loving his enemy...

[QUOTE]


Interesting. I've heard the theory about Jesus having short hair because he was in a Hellenistic culture - on the Discovery Channel.

I've been running around in conservative Christian groups most of my adult life - I can't say I've heard of a "remasculinization" movement. lol. I wouldn't think the Son of God would need a gender reaffirmation push.
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Old 11-08-2009, 02:38 AM   #135
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Really? I know of at least two posters in FYM that have brought it up and dozens of examples outside of FYM...

So you think those qualities go hand in hand with the U.S. definition of masculinity?
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