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Old 09-30-2008, 09:58 AM   #106
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I have to ask this one question.

Define "all."

Could one be in favor of same-sex marriage but maybe still wonder what kind of Pandora's box "all" opens up?
Why is "two consenting adults" so hard to grasp for some people?

There is no suprise box full of people who want to marry goats, cars, or robots...
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Old 09-30-2008, 10:03 AM   #107
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Well there was that woman who was married to the Berlin Wall. If we let gay people get married just think of all the women who will want to marry walls (if they aren't already married to a man who acts like a wall). So we just can't allow that. Save the walls.
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Old 09-30-2008, 10:08 AM   #108
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i definitely believe in equal rights.
gay people should be able to get married so they can be just as miserable as everyone else.
it's really not fair that gay people are so happy.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:05 AM   #109
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DODGE

Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): dodged ; dodg·ing
transitive senses
1 : to evade (as a duty) usually indirectly or by trickery <dodged the draft by leaving the country> <dodged questions>
2 a : to evade by a sudden or repeated shift of position b : to avoid an encounter with
intransitive senses
1 a : to make a sudden movement in a new direction (as to evade a blow) <dodged behind the door> b : to move to and fro or from place to place usually in an irregular course <dodged through the crowd>
2 : to evade a responsibility or duty especially by trickery or deceit
Nice edit to dodge something yourself. Since your question has been answered here so much we're all ready to puke, I'll answer yours after you answer mine about families headed by single moms: Are they real families since they don't have an opposite gender parent at home?
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:31 AM   #110
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Nice edit to dodge something yourself. Since your question has been answered here so much we're all ready to puke, I'll answer yours after you answer mine about families headed by single moms: Are they real families since they don't have an opposite gender parent at home?


my guess is that it's not that they aren't "real" families, but that they are less than "ideal" -- and, obviously, since they aren't the ideal, and society can only be expected to protect and preserve and promote someone's idea of perfection, they don't count as much as do "ideal" families.

because there's only one way to ever do things. ozzie and harriet aren't so different from mary and joseph who aren't so different from tony and carmela. after all, these families are all exactly the same, aren't they? what was true 5,000 years ago is true today. dad comes home from work to mom and happy children and kisses her on the cheek and they all talk about their day. and ozzie and harriet and mary and joseph and tony and carmela are able to pass along their magical alchemy that comes from their heterosexuality, without which their children would be disadvantaged.

ultimately, this is what drives me insane, and always has. no matter the subject. that there's only one way to do things. that there is an ideal, and we bring ourselves to the ideal. and i guess that's a very Christian way of looking at the world. there's how Christ lived, and then there's how you live, and the gap in between is sin. and, thusly, our laws should only protect those who strive to be ideal/Christ-like, for anything that is different is, by definition, inferior and bad for us.

there isn't one way to be a man. there isn't one way to be a woman. there isn't one way to be a heterosexual or a homosexual. there isn't one way to be a father. there isn't one way to be a mother. we can point to several characteristics that might make successful fathers, or mothers, but that's not to say that there aren't a multitude of different ways to be a successful parent.

if you believe in freedom, if you believe in people, if you believe that people are capable of making decisions for themselves -- if you don't believe that people need to be guided away from sin/less-than-ideal by the government (and how ironic! the same people who decry government intervention in our markets love to use the government to encourage people to live more like they think we all should live) -- then you can't believe that there's only one way to do things.

take sex. you could argue that sex is "best" when it is between two married heterosexuals. preferably after they've showered and brushed their teeth. missionary position, too. however, we don't promote this ideal because it doesn't take into account wondrous human diversity nor does it even come close to covering the human experience. so, what we do, is that we make certain kinds of sex illegal because we know that someone is harmed. thus, we make sex with children and animals illegal. we make rape illegal. we can show clear, direct harm, and then that activity is made illegal.

what we don't do is say "all forms of sex that are not the ideal are illegal."

there are some conservatives -- Rick Santorum, for example -- who do think this. he thinks that we do have a vested interest in knowing what goes on in people's bedrooms. NBC argued for this as well. that whenever people have sex that isn't the "best" kind of sex, then someone is getting hurt somewhere. this is the Christian argument that the homosexual is hurting himself when he has sex (or falls in love, or has a relationship with) with a same-sexed partner. because this isn't ideal for people. because we need to propagate the species. because we must encourage reproduction. so we cannot condone any form of sex that doesn't (at least in intent) accomplish what some believe is the true "purpose" of sex -- procreation.

and this is what nathan's argument all boils down to. there's only one way that a marriage can be.

unfortunately, this ideal is based in a nostalgic, mystical past that never actually existed. and as with all ideals, it never comes close to applying to all people.

so what do we do? we let people decide for themselves, give them the tools to be successful at creating their own relationships, and we make illegal those things that demonstrably harm individuals or society.

if you want to argue that homosexuality hurts the individual and society as a whole, by all means. go ahead and do so.

but until you're prepared to do that. until you're prepared to say that the only ideal marriage has biologically produced children from a male/female pairing. until you're prepared to kick out people who don't match up with whatever said "ideal" actually is, then you don't have an argument at all.

you just have tortured prejudice. and *that* hurts individuals. and society.
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Old 09-30-2008, 01:51 PM   #111
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Yeah, the citizens of California are going to vote and they should reject this misguided legislation.
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Old 09-30-2008, 02:25 PM   #112
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I'm on deadline, so I can't respond to all of this.

I will say however that the whole issue of "real/legitimate" families and "fake/illegitimate" families is a false dichotomy. Read over all my posts again, and you'll see that I've never said that, because I don't think that. Despite martha and irvine's comments to the contrary (comments made out of understandable emotion and pain), the issue is actually much more complicated. The question at hand is whether laws of the land are meant to govern for the rule, or the exception. The laws of the land must hold to an ideal -- say, for example, "murder is wrong" -- and while there are extenuating circumstances in some cases of murder (self-defense, etc), the courts do not then say, "murder is no longer wrong because of the exceptions to the rule." The courts say, "murder is wrong, and here are the exceptions."

I do think that the best situation for families is a family where both the mother and the father love one another and their children. Of course there are people who get married without intending to procreate. Of course there are some lesbian parents who can be better parents than the Spears, to quote Irvine's favorite example. But again, laws aren't meant to govern the exceptions to the rule. Laws hold up the ideal. Those who don't meet that ideal have the right and the freedom to argue that their situation merits special consideration, but once we start to abolish the ideal itself, what are we left with?

I had a long conversation with a lesbian friend of mine last week about this very issue over coffee, because I'm willing to engage and be engaged on this issue. She ended our talk by talking about friends of hers who are in two different threesomes, and asked the question: "Shouldn't my friends be allowed to get married too?" The point being, if we allow people to define marriage however we want, can't her friends get married? Some may scoff and mock this question, but it is a real one. (And, for the record, it annoys me when stupid Christians start ranting and raving about people marrying their dogs, because that's a ridiculous non sequitor.)

I quote the LA Times Op-Ed piece because the author has actually spent time researching and studying the sociology and development of families throughout history, so he's in a position to know, and he's a self-described liberal, which takes this out of an easy partisan paradigm. And when he points out that the primary (though by no means exclusive) reason people get married is children -- a reason born out more and more by modern statistical data -- we get into the messy issue of whether gender matters in human development and whether having both a mother and a father should be considered essential for families.

Irvine's entire post is predicated on knocking those who believe there is "one way" to do things, and he connects that to Christians -- as if Christians are the only ones with ideals. Idealism isn't a Christian virtue -- rather, it is the backbone of our entire legal system. To say that having ideals codifies prejudice is ridiculous. (The Declaration of Human Rights is an ideal, for God's sake.) There are core principles, laws, and values which govern the land. When we begin to sacrifice the ideal -- whatever that ideal may be -- or redefine what the ideal is, or pretend that the ideal doesn't exist, we start down a slippery slope. If we are going to do so as a society, then in a democracy where principles of self-rule and self-governance dominate, I think we ought to be allowed the freedom to vote on such decisions. Otherwise, the ideal we're sacrificing is the ideal of self-governance and democracy. And that's not a hill I'm willing to die on.
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Old 09-30-2008, 02:35 PM   #113
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There is no surprise box full of people who want to marry goats...
Speak for yourself.

I, personally, think she's gorgeous. Don't you?

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Old 09-30-2008, 02:58 PM   #114
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Personally I think the only "ideal" is parents who love one another and their children. I think it's ridiculous to suggest that any majority of one man/one woman ever live up to some perfect ideal above all others. Gender has nothing to do with ability to love and to be a parent.
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:11 PM   #115
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I will say however that the whole issue of "real/legitimate" families and "fake/illegitimate" families is a false dichotomy. Read over all my posts again, and you'll see that I've never said that, because I don't think that. Despite martha and irvine's comments to the contrary (comments made out of understandable emotion and pain), the issue is actually much more complicated. The question at hand is whether laws of the land are meant to govern for the rule, or the exception. The laws of the land must hold to an ideal -- say, for example, "murder is wrong" -- and while there are extenuating circumstances in some cases of murder (self-defense, etc), the courts do not then say, "murder is no longer wrong because of the exceptions to the rule." The courts say, "murder is wrong, and here are the exceptions."

you're comparing murder to marriage? one thing is a specific human action that has a demonstrable consequence, and the other is a legal contract that confers a variety of benefits and social status. it's an exceptionally poor comparison.

there are no "ideals" involved in marriage. and to try to suggest that there are, or that there should be, comes very close to social engineering, and that itself is the slippery slope -- 50 years ago it was argued that God created different races for a reason, that's why he put them on different continents, and therefore they shouldn't marry because of the mixed children they might produce. that's garbage, and we know that.

and, further, even if you believe that there are specific "ideals" (standards?) that all potential couplings must measure up to, i'd be curious to see how a gay couple couldn't measure up to your standards. what is the difference between marth and steve and irvine and memphis? neither couple can produce their own biological children, but so what? how is this necessary to the "ideal" marriage? further, how does not having one "ideal" mean that you are barred from entrance into this contract?



Quote:
I do think that the best situation for families is a family where both the mother and the father love one another and their children. Of course there are people who get married without intending to procreate. Of course there are some lesbian parents who can be better parents than the Spears, to quote Irvine's favorite example. But again, laws aren't meant to govern the exceptions to the rule. Laws hold up the ideal. Those who don't meet that ideal have the right and the freedom to argue that their situation merits special consideration, but once we start to abolish the ideal itself, what are we left with?

this is incredibly vague. laws do not hold up the ideal -- in fact, i don't even know what you mean by this. and you're, again, ignoring the fact that not all marriages are interested in children.

i also don't think you're quite understanding how patronizing and insulting you're being when you talk about "ideals." you're saying that, through an unchosen involuntary characteristic, i am incapable of being in an "ideal" relationship. and that, logically, you yourself are in said "ideal" relationship. so what you are absolutely doing is judging people on their form, but not their content. you are judging a relationship on its form and not its content.

that's the very definition of prejudice.

and it absolutely fits in to the Christian analogy i offered. the Spears have the potential to be ideal, since they are heterosexuals all around, only they fall short of that through mistakes, shortcomings, etc. (i.e., sin) if they can repent and be better, they can be ideal. but Ellen and Portia are flawed from the beginning, no matter how good they strive to be, they are fundamentally flawed and should thusly be barred from said institution.

really, stop and think about this.



Quote:
I had a long conversation with a lesbian friend of mine last week about this very issue over coffee, because I'm willing to engage and be engaged on this issue. She ended our talk by talking about friends of hers who are in two different threesomes, and asked the question: "Shouldn't my friends be allowed to get married too?" The point being, if we allow people to define marriage however we want, can't her friends get married? Some may scoff and mock this question, but it is a real one. (And, for the record, it annoys me when stupid Christians start ranting and raving about people marrying their dogs, because that's a ridiculous non sequitor.)

if people want to argue for polygamy, they can do so on it's own terms. to conflate it with the "well, then what's next?" question that gets tossed around with same-sex marriage is not just insulting, but it's fundamentally wrong.

if one of the members of those threesomes is heterosexual or even bisexual, then they can get married to a person of their opposite gender. they have access to the institution of marriage that i do not have. there is no discrimination there. any heterosexual polygamist can marry one woman of his choice. there is no discrimination there.

and polygamists are free to argue their case on it's own merits. don't drag same-sex marriage into that discussion, because it is not the same thing.



Quote:
I quote the LA Times Op-Ed piece because the author has actually spent time researching and studying the sociology and development of families throughout history, so he's in a position to know, and he's a self-described liberal, which takes this out of an easy partisan paradigm. And when he points out that the primary (though by no means exclusive) reason people get married is children -- a reason born out more and more by modern statistical data -- we get into the messy issue of whether gender matters in human development and whether having both a mother and a father should be considered essential for families.

you can go back and read that thread to see the numerous holes kicked into that piece by every poster other than yourself. i can also point you to gays who are against same-sex marriage. that doesn't make their point of view any more illogical and ill conceived. there are lots of Auntie Toms to be found, and simply quoting one doesn't confer any legitimacy onto the point being made.

if you're going to say that marriage must measure up to "ideals" then i suppose it does follow that parenthood must measure up to "ideals" -- so what you're proposing, nathan, is that children be removed from families that have divorced, families where one partner has died, single parent families and children raised by their grandparents.

after all, laws promote the ideal, right?


Quote:
Irvine's entire post is predicated on knocking those who believe there is "one way" to do things, and he connects that to Christians -- as if Christians are the only ones with ideals. Idealism isn't a Christian virtue -- rather, it is the backbone of our entire legal system. To say that having ideals codifies prejudice is ridiculous. (The Declaration of Human Rights is an ideal, for God's sake.) There are core principles, laws, and values which govern the land. When we begin to sacrifice the ideal -- whatever that ideal may be -- or redefine what the ideal is, or pretend that the ideal doesn't exist, we start down a slippery slope. If we are going to do so as a society, then in a democracy where principles of self-rule and self-governance dominate, I think we ought to be allowed the freedom to vote on such decisions. Otherwise, the ideal we're sacrificing is the ideal of self-governance and democracy. And that's not a hill I'm willing to die on.

you've really misunderstood what is meant by ideals.

the Declaration of Human Rights is not a list of aspirations -- what i think you really are talking about when you say "ideals" -- but a list of crimes that human beings have the right not to be subjected to on the basis of their humanity.

you want to make marriage an aspirational union. that's fine.

just make sure you understand that what you're saying.
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:19 PM   #116
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you're saying that, through an unchosen involuntary characteristic, i am incapable of being in an "ideal" relationship. and that, logically, you yourself are in said "ideal" relationship. so what you are absolutely doing is judging people on their form, but not their content. you are judging a relationship on its form and not its content.
That's just it, form vs content. It's the CONTENT of a marriage that matters. My parents' marriage-well the content was/is horrible on many levels but boy oh boy it's a man and a woman. I'm just wondering why that didn't amount to a hill of beans for me.

If some straight people spent half as much time worrying about the content of their own marriages, rather than the form of the marriages of people they don't even know anything about, well marriage would be safe and strong and sanctified for all eternity.
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:28 PM   #117
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When the "ideal" marriage changed from transfer of property, the woman, to a loving relationship based on companionship and love, who voted on that?
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:42 PM   #118
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If some straight people spent half as much time worrying about the content of their own marriages, rather than the form of the marriages of people they don't even know anything about, well marriage would be safe and strong and sanctified for all eternity.
On this we agree. The problem is that Prop 8 is before us, and any such discussion here on the prop is two-fold: there are those who think this shouldn't even be an issue for the voters (which I disagree with purely on democratic principles, which no one has yet addressed), and there are those who are passionate on both sides of the issue. Because any discussion on this matter is bound to end in a stalemate, the fundamental question left to argue is whether the citizens of a democracy founded on principles of self-governance have the right to vote on an issue that carries substantial social ramifications.
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:53 PM   #119
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there are those who think this shouldn't even be an issue for the voters (which I disagree with purely on democratic principles, which no one has yet addressed)
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When the "ideal" marriage changed from transfer of property, the woman, to a loving relationship based on companionship and love, who voted on that?

I asked this question.
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:54 PM   #120
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Because any discussion on this matter is bound to end in a stalemate, the fundamental question left to argue is whether the citizens of a democracy founded on principles of self-governance have the right to vote on an issue that carries substantial social ramifications.


so the majority gets to vote on whether or not to extend basic equal treatment under the law to a minority (who already have a long history of social, legal, and political oppression).
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