Senate Homosexuality: the Thread

Discussion in 'Community' started by zombie, Jan 24, 2006.

  1. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    So if I found someone misguided enough to want to marry me, and if I were past the age of child-bearing, I should still have the right to marry because I could (though I could not in this scenario) have children?

    My hypothetical husband could easily find another woman to bear his kids...but that hardly is an argument for marriage unless in this hypthetical world I agreed to raise another woman's kid(s) to give them a benefit of a loving, supportive environment?

    But if I wanted to marry another woman (no offense, but I don't want to marry anyone I currently know, male or female) I should not have the same right because I couldn't have children?

    Kind of crazy if you ask me.

    As I put it to my happily married brother some time back, how does same-sex marriage affect his happy marriage? He couldn't provide an answer, quite frankly.
  2. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    You don't get married because you want to have kids, you get married because you have a personal relationship with another person. If gays have such a similar relationship and want to get married, then why the hell not?
  3. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    A brother and sister could have a similar relationship too. And if the idea of marriage isn't about having kids then I guess they could get married.

    But it is about having kids. That's why brothers and sisters can't get married. It's why you can't marry one of your parents. So while marriage is open to everybody, the idea of marriage is about having kids.

    Val? I didn't understand what you were saying. Could you restate it?
  4. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    So, again, if that's government's sole reason for being involved in marriage, why not mandate that all married couples have kids within a certain period of time?

    Why not ban marriage for infertile couples or post-menopausal women? How is that unconstitutional, but banning marriage for a same-sex couple is not? It could not be about individuals vs. couples, as the Supreme Court recently ruled that entire corporations have the same rights as individual people.

    As far as incest, as far as I'm concerned, that should be legal as well, because the only reason to outlaw it is due to the idea that the incestuous couple might have children. Using that rationale, anyone carrying a genetic disorder should be banned from marrying. (And my "ick factor" is on super-high alert when it comes to a brother and sister being romantic, but an "ick factor" is not a reason to ban anyone from marrying the person that he or she chooses.)

    A ban on a child or animal marrying makes sense, since neither children nor animals can sign any sort of legal contract. And as far as government involvement is concerned, that is all marriage is: a legal contract. In a couple's private life or in various religions, it might mean much more than that. But I'm discussing government involvement in marriage. Government cannot and should not mandate children, or even romance in a marriage.

    If two elderly sisters want to sign one legal contract that would allow each other power of attorney and inheritance rights, they should be allowed to do so. "Will you have kids together?" shouldn't even be a question.

    Marriage--again, under the law--is about creating a family with the other person. Families in the 21st century do not necessarily consist of mother, father, brother, sister and dog.

    I should also point out that the original purpose of government-issued marriage licenses was to keep interracial couples from marrying and to keep couples from marrying across social classes. Why exactly is this something we need to keep around?

    I don't need a government license to tell me that my husband is my husband. I need that government contract to tell me that he automatically inherits my assets and is my power of attorney if I'm ever incapacitated.
  5. wannasee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2007
    star 4
    Marriage from the state's point of view is about having and raising children. Also, it's about property.

    It's not about love. That's stupid.

    The state doesn't care about love.
  6. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    J-Rod,sometimes my tongue and my fingers don't coordinate. :p

    Anakinfansince1986 said it far better than I:


    Why not ban marriage for infertile couples or post-menopausal women? How is that unconstitutional, but banning marriage for a same-sex couple is not? It could not be about individuals vs. couples, as the Supreme Court recently ruled that entire corporations have the same rights as individual people.


    My point being what she ^ said: if marriage should be for the purpose of having the next generation and I or another woman is post-menopausal, then I or these other women should not have the right to marry under that definition. Nor should infertile couples, or couples who plan to have no children (and in this "having" kids I'm including those who don't plan to adopt,either).

    Just because a traditional man-woman couple COULD have kids doesn't mean they WOULD.

    So either marriage is redefined to be for those who have kids or adopt kids and everyone else gets something like a legal partnership that is not "marriage" under the above definition - or - marriage is only for those whose marriages are sanctified by a relgious organization.

    But wait - what is Religious Group A blesses same-sex marriage and Religious Group B finds it obscene - does B get to overrule A, A overrule B, or do they have to find a way to co-exist?

    In the end, all this argument really comes down to semantics - but words are powerful and symbolic and hence the focul point of the, ahem, discussion.

    Marriage is a legal contract to the government, a legal status that grants benefits. Marriage to most (all?) religions is a sacrament.

    Solutions (not endorsing these, just throwing them out there):
    1. Church-sanctioned weddings and only those are "marriages" and everything else is - named something else.
    2. Marriages can be either secular, religious or both - one is is recognized by the government and the other is recognized by both government and religion.
    3. ??
    4. ??

    I live in Washington state: the Senate just passed a same-sex marriage bill, the House is voting on it shortly (it's expected to pass) and the Governor has promised to sign it into law.

    One of our more "conservative" (being polite here) religious leaders is requesting a boycott of Starbucks and planning a referendum to overturn this not-yet-passed law. I can't be bothered to give him much of an ear, but the gist of his argument is that he is offended - OFFENDED - by what other two men or other two women do. My understanding of his viewpoint is that HE gets to define marriage for anyone else, and by god (yeah, snuck that in there) what he wants should be right and moral for everyone and if they don't like it, well, they have to follow his rules because he's right and they're not.

    Here's an interesting local poll from NBC affiliate TV station, King 5:
    In a non-scientific poll on KING5.com, 12 percent of people said they would never buy products again from a company that supported same-sex marriage, while 51 percent said they were more likely to buy products from those companies. Thirty-three percent said it would make no difference in their buying habits.


    Here's an interesting quote from an online article on CBS affiliate KIROTV.com:


    Nearly a dozen amendments were debated, including several that passed that strengthen legal protections for religious groups and organizations. A handful were rejected, including one that would exempt photographers, cake decorators and other business owners who object to gay marriage from the law, and another that called for a referendum clause to be added to the bill.

    Sen. Dan Swecker, R-Rochester, argued that the proposed law alters the definition of marriage and "will lead to the silencing of those who believe in traditional marriage." {insert editorial comment here: :rolleyes: }

    "It's ironic how a bill which purports to be about ending discrimination leaves the door open so far for discrimin
  7. wannasee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2007
    star 4
    "I love this person so much that I should receive benefits from the state" is a ridiculous opinion to hold.

    Edit: I know I'm repeating myself, but it is just so clear to me that "people who love each other" should NOT be the definition of marriage.

    I don't know what it should be, but I know it shouldn't be that.

  8. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    Why else would you get married? If love doesn't define marriage, then there's no point to even having marriage. Otherwise you may as well tell your spouse and kids, "I only did this because I believe in the propagation of the human race". I don't think anybody really believes that a romantic love relationship has no intrinsic value, but I do think the anti-gay marriage crowd chooses to tie itself into knots looking for any explanation to justify being against gay marriage.

    As for the state's involvement, it recognizes marriage simply because people wanted it that way. The other alternative is for the state to recognize no marriages and simply let it be a private matter, but given a choice people probably would want it to remain recognized. I don't think you can say the state ever had a mandate to ensure the continuation of our species, otherwise we'd have a Reverse One-Child Policy setting mandatory quotas on making babies from all fertile couples rather than simply leaving the decision to have kids as a private matter as it is now. If you ask me, the idea of having kids because the state is compelling you to do so seems to violate the sanctity of the family much more than simply allowing gays to marry.
  9. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    Um, those elderly sisters can enter into a contract stating exactly what you just said. There is nothing stopping them at all right now. These avenues are already open to them and they don't have to get married to have a legal contract expressing these desires. Everything else everyone has brought up has been covered in previous posts.
  10. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    No it isn't. Some people's idea is, but not all. According to Wikipedia's article on being childfree, 13% women 35-44 that have been married don't have any kids. The 1998 Current Population Survey found that 18.4% of married women were childless. When around 1 in 6 married women doesn't have a kid, I don't really buy the idea that "marriage is about children". Marriage is about having that particular status with another person. as 100% of married people have spouses. That's what the real thing is about.
  11. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    But under the eyes of the law, that's what marriage is, no more. It's a simplified version of the contract that you say (correctly) that these two sisters can get. Marriage may be something different in the eyes of individuals or religions, but legally, that's all it is.

    Government has absolutely no business stopping any couple from marrying simply because certain groups or people like the one Valairy_Scot quoted, believe that their particular pairing isn't valid under the eyes of a particular God.

    (And Starbucks is now getting a lot more of my business. I needed an excuse to buy lattes more often. :p)

    No, it hasn't. Your argument is that marriage is solely about having kids. You then went on to say that it is unconstitutional for the state to ban infertile people or post-menopausal women from marrying. However, apparently it is not unconstitutional for the state to ban couples from marrying simply due to their sexual orientation. If the Supreme Court says that entire corporations, because they are comprised of groups of people, are the same as individuals in regards to speech, why do two people who comprise a couple not have the same rights as individuals in regards to deciding to form a family together?

    You have not addressed why heterosexual couples--whether or not they are capable of having children or want children--have more rights than same-sex couples. Your only argument is that same-sex couples cannot have biological children together and therefore they have no need to get married. Based on that argument, neither do infertile or elderly couples, or couples who do not want children, but neither you nor the state has any problem with their marrying. That doesn't make sense.

    Exactly. And as I said above, there is no reason whatsoever why same-sex couples should not be allowed that status just as heterosexual couples can have, for the price of a license.

    If the government is going to remain in marriage, it should be open to any two adults who can sign a legal contract. Period.
  12. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    But I have covered all of these points. The reason the government is compelled to recognise marriage is because of future generations. My proof? You can't marry a sibling or parent. It's about procreation. Because you don'5t agree that marriage should be about procreation doesn't make it any less true. Please tell me, if you will, why we can't marry our siblings or parents if you think the idea of marriage isn't about providing the best possible environment for bringing babies into the society.

    It's great that you want old ladies to get married. But that doesn't change the fact that the recognision of marriage isn't designed for that purpose. It's designed to encourage the best environment for the conseption and rearing of children. Forcing the conception of children is outside the scope of government. Encouraging it, however, isn't. And that's the purpose of marriage.
  13. wannasee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2007
    star 4
    What purpose does marriage serve in our society? If someone can answer this question, perhaps we can stop talking in circles.
  14. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    Seriously. And if J-Rod is correct, then it makes no sense to allow the elderly or infertile to marry.

    If it is unconstitutional to mandate that married people have children, marriage must be about something other than children; otherwise, government involvement in marriage would be unconstitutional in and of itself.

    It also makes no sense whatsoever to ban same-sex couples from marrying for the reason that "they can't have children" but allow an infertile couple or elderly couple to marry when they can't have children either.

    You mentioned property; one thing the marriage contract does, is simplify property rights. I would say that the purpose of having government issue a marriage contract is to simplify into one legal contract a number of provisions that a couple wants to grant to each other, saving paperwork, time and money.

    But as J-Rod already pointed out, any couple can do this, so if government got out of the marriage business, all that would happen is that the legal contract process for heterosexual non-blood-related couples would become as complex as it is for anyone else.

    I'm not following why heterosexual non-blood-related couples get the special treatment of a more simplified contract. As there is no fertility test, age requirement or requirement to adopt, "it's for the children" is obviously just an excuse.
  15. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    IOW, I think we need to take religion and tradition out of this and look at the contract itself and whether it is still necessary or useful. "This is why it was established," besides being a fallacy, is hardly a reason to keep a policy as is--particularly when we are discussing government-issued marriage licenses, whose original purpose was racist and classist.

    I would say that a simplified contract between life partners is useful today, but restricting choice of life partners and only issuing contracts to those who make the traditional choice, is not useful at all.
  16. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    You're looking at this from a really artificial, forced way. Since when was marriage "designed"? Since when was it ever set in stone?

    The government recognizes marriage because we live in a democratic society where the government serves the people. Even in non-democratic societies, the government usually bows to the will of the people on these matters. The people want marriage to be a contract, recognized by the state, so the government obeys. In some states, a majority of the people want marriage to include same-sex couple, and so their government obeys.

    Ideas about marriage have always been fluctuating. In ancient times, marriage was a way of men claiming which women and children were their property, primarily as a means of insuring their inheritance to their offspring. In the days of Abraham, it was fine to have concubines. In the days of King David, it was fine to have more than one wife. Marriage became the endpoint of romanticized courtship during the Middle Ages, with tales of chaste knights rescuing damsels in distress. Eventually women gained equal rights, and marriage evolved to accomodate that change too. In the United States, whites and blacks were once forbidden from marriage, and that changed too. It has continually shifted throughout history, and this is just covering Western Civilization, nevermind the practices of Native Americans, Africans, Arabs, Asians, Native Australians, etc. Marriage wasn't always involved with the government, either. Marriage wasn't always involved with religion, either.

    The leaders of government never sat down and decided what marriage is, and what its purpose was. Marriage is organic, changing through the years, just like the rest of society. Marriage wasn't designed as a result of some social engineering experiment by a bunch of social scientists working for the government, trying to tell people what's best for them. Government doesn't recognize marriage because of the government's interest, but out of social convention, and bowing to the will of the people. Social conventions and the will of the people are ever-changing, and so is marriage.

    And if marriage is the best environment to raise children in, then why deny the option of marriage to the milions of children being raised by gay/lesbian/bisexual parents?
  17. shinjo_jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 5
    How is the homosexual marriage = marrying sibling or parent even justified? It's not even prominent enough to be relevant to this conversation. I know dozens of couples who are denied the same legal rights as I could get with a hooker in Las Vegas overnight because they are the same sex, but I don't know of a single couple that is being denied these rights because they're mother and son. It's irrelevant, and a pathetic red herring at that.

    And we're also back on the "but what about the kids" argument? My mother had a hysterectomy. Should the license between my parents be revoked? What about my aunt and uncle who never wanted kids? Why'd they even get married if they didn't want children? What about the millions of children out of wedlock that are born every year?

    On a side note, J-Rod, you should watch my favorite scene from the West Wing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_2LIQJe3dw
  18. DarthIktomi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2009
    star 4
    Ah, the nuclear family. Wasn't that just a bit of social engineering to replace extended families so Americans (and other Westerners) could be more mobile? Also, there was this mistaken belief among feminists (possibly because of LDS polygamy in those days) that the nuclear family was somehow more egalitarian than an extended family.
  19. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
  20. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    The main idea of a heavy tax on cigarettes is to end smoking. You may or may not agree on that tax, but the main purpose is to lower the health costs of smoking. Why doesn't the government ban tobacco? Couldn't tell you.

    And if corporations are individuals then how can the Obama administration force the Catholic Church to give up it's first amendment rights and require them to facilitate the killing of unborn babies?
  21. DarthIktomi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2009
    star 4
    I should point out that there is a country that mandated women have children. A lot of them. It's called Romania. Ever hear of Decree 770? Basically, it outlawed abortion and contraception except in cases of women over 40, women whose life was in danger, women whose life was in danger from the pregnancy, and women who already had four (later raised to five) children. The generation born during this is even called the Decretei. Ceau?escu thought Romania's population should be 25 million, but it was only 19 million.

    Now, why are these Focus on the Family types flirting with communism? Psh. We tried that, couldn't get to the stage where it works because, surprise surprise, people in power want more power.
  22. GrandAdmiralPelleaon Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2000
    star 6
    And who says that wedded household can't be a same-sex couple, I fail to see the point here? I'll conveniently read "conceived" as "any of the number of ways a child could end up being part of a household on birth", before you go on about that.

    Let's leave all the rest aside, which is pretty weird to begin with, and start with that question, shall we?
  23. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    Why am I answering all the same questions over and over and over again? If you disagree with my response, fine. But why make me repreat it? At least give me a counterpoint for rebuttal.

    Redefining the word "conceived" to fit your specific purpose is not a counterpoint.
  24. JediSmuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 1999
    star 5
    Convenient.

    How about showing me a biological child made from ONLY the members of a gay and/or lesbian couple.

    A heterosexual couple, as a rule (I will admit that there are exceptions) can create a biological child with 50% of the chromosomes from the one member and 50% of the chromosomes from the other member.

    Show me the gay or lesbian couple that can do that.
  25. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    The lesbian couples in my neighborhood haven't had much of a problem with this. There's so much extra sperm floating around they can practically scrape it off the sidewalk or from underneath the table at your typical Denny's.