December 01, 2003
william safire: pro-gay?

That might be overstating, but apparently he is the rare, yet delightful conservative that realizes that liberty demands equality, and that even those one disapproves of (communists, witches, homosexuals) deserve equal rights under law:

That encouragement to making homosexual relationships more permanent is the primary argument for "civil union," the euphemism for "legal marriage but don't call it that because it makes most straight people angry"...

The libertarian in me says: civil union corrects an inequity in the law. There should be no legal or economic discrimination against homosexuals anywhere in the U.S. And what is lawful in Vermont or Massachusetts should be recognized in every other state because we are one nation when it comes to basic rights, popular statutes to the contrary notwithstanding.

I'm really impressed that Safire would write such a thing, but he stops short of the full prize:
The conservative in me wonders: if equal rights can be assured by civil union, why are some gays pushing so hard for the word "marriage"?

The answer is that the ancient word conveys a powerful message. Civil union connotes toleration of homosexuality, with its attendant recognition of an individual's civil rights; but marriage connotes society's full approval of homosexuality, with previous moral judgment reversed.

The pace of profound cultural change is too important to be left to activist judges. As moral-political issues go, this big one deserves examination in communities with minds that can deal with internal contradictions which is the libcon way.

Safire is a bit cagey here, and I'm not sure I take his meaning. Is it that he understands the desire of gay folks to be married, but just thinks people aren't ready for it, or is he of the mind that "marriage" is a special state which can only happen if the majority allows it?

If his attitude is the latter, then his own value system ("personal freedom is central") falls apart.

Marriage, as my mother was taught in Catholic School, is a union by a man, woman and god. I'm pretty sure that most christian denominations, not to mention the Jewish and Muslim faiths, also hold this as their essential definition of marriage.

In the secular world of Western Democratic Law, there is no god--at least not one that gets a say in what happens. Therefore any definition of marriage from the point of view of the State can not include any religious values whatsoever, or the fundamental principle of the separation of church and state is violated.

The question can be approached in this way: If non-western marriages are recognized by the State, so then must Gay Marriage. In other words, if I worship the god Nuada of the Silver Hand, and I'm married to Kat by a clergy of that religion (hey, it's a thought), theoretically the State will recognize such a union as valid, even though it's a so-called Pagan religion and completely outside the mainstream of Western Civilization.

If this is true, then there is little ground to stand on for the prohibition of gay marriage. The point, if I seem to missing one is this: Marriage is a commitment between two people (and god if you believe that), and those two people ultimately decide the parameters of what that commitment is. Some marry for love, others for security, or many other things. What a marriage is--and more to the point what is a marriage--is decided not by the State nor any religion but by those who say that they're married.

If you can understand this, then you realize that there is only one difference between same sex marriage and civil unions: The attitude of those being joined.


Posted by illovich at December 01, 2003 12:23 PM
Comments

You people should be ashamed of yourselves for tormenting those who defend gay marriages. Marrigae is not the "holy" joinging of two heterosexual partners. It does not at all have to deal with religion. I, personally, find absolutely no reason to oppose this act, and neither should you. When you find a valid fact defending your idea, please e-mail it to me and I will consider your position. Other than this, please do not voice your opposition without backing this preposition with strong evidence.

Posted by: Scott on March 18, 2004 10:13 AM

I'm curious how you take what I wrote:

"If this is true, then there is little ground to stand on for the prohibition of gay marriage. The point, if I seem to missing one is this: Marriage is a commitment between two people (and god if you believe that), and those two people ultimately decide the parameters of what that commitment is. Some marry for love, others for security, or many other things. What a marriage is--and more to the point what is a marriage--is decided not by the State nor any religion but by those who say that they're married.

If you can understand this, then you realize that there is only one difference between same sex marriage and civil unions: The attitude of those being joined.

as "tormenting those who support gay marriages."

I was merely expressing surprise that William Saffire of all people seemed to at least accept the idea of civil unions, even if he stops short of full blown marriage.

My guess is that either you didn't read what I wrote carefully, or your sarcasm-meter was turned off in the beginning of the post.

In either case, I hope this clears everything up.

Posted by: illovich on March 18, 2004 10:31 AM

I don't really understand the big deal with civil union.Who the hell is it hurting for homosexuals to celebrate their love and make their partnership legal.Personally I think that it should be each state's decision so that if someone doesn't like their state's decision they can just move to a different state. This is just a bunch of bible-thumpers looking for something else to criticize. We DO NOT live in the time period of the bible any longer. With the future comes new ideas and we must be able to accept them. The ONLY reason people think it is wrong is because they are raised to believe this shit. The only reason it is believed to be "morally wrong" is because the bible says so. What ever happened to seperation of church and state? This is a free country, and people should be allowed to think for themselves. The government is so fucked up and twisted in their thinking. Fuck 'em all! Peace and love,
Lalina

Posted by: Lalina Starling on March 25, 2004 12:05 PM

I don't really understand the big deal with civil union.Who is it hurting for homosexuals to celebrate their love and make their partnership legal.Personally I think that it should be each state's decision so that if someone doesn't like their state's decision they can just move to a different state. This is just a bunch of bible-thumpers looking for something else to criticize. We DO NOT live in the time period of the bible any longer. With the future comes new ideas and we must be able to accept them. The ONLY reason people think it is wrong is because they are raised to believe this hogswash. The only reason it is believed to be "morally wrong" is because the bible says so. What ever happened to seperation of church and state? This is a free country, and people should be allowed to think for themselves. The government is so messed up and twisted in their thinking. Forget 'em all! Peace and love,
Lalina

Posted by: Lalina Starling on March 25, 2004 12:07 PM

Thank God some one is thinking on their own. I am a christian and believe in the bible, but not everyone does. Why should the state vote on something that doesn't really apply to everyone? We live in a country of freedom of choice. We get to choose what to wear, what flavor of tooth paste we use, or even to brush our teeth. We have the choice to pick who we love and want to marry, why do we have to base our opinion from what's in between their legs? What ever makes us happy, right?

Posted by: Courtney Stoneburg (age 16) on May 27, 2004 5:53 PM

Thank God some one is thinking on their own. I am a christian and believe in the bible, but not everyone does. Why should the state vote on something that doesn't really apply to everyone? We live in a country of freedom of choice. We get to choose what to wear, what flavor of tooth paste we use, or even to brush our teeth. We have the choice to pick who we love and want to marry, why do we have to base our opinion from what's in between their legs? What ever makes us happy, right?

Posted by: Courtney Stoneburg (age 16) on May 27, 2004 5:53 PM

love is important and if you belive you love a person, same sex or not, truly and dearly, then i belive you should do what your heart desires!!!!

Posted by: Christina Thomas 16 on May 27, 2004 5:57 PM
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