I read a few blogs on a regular basis. Recently, a post in one of them triggered some
fighting name-calling debate, and I thought I'd expand my own thoughts here.
Whether you agree with his post or not, Mr. Marshall raises some interesting points. The first being that, in NY, we recently had a vote on a same-sex marriage bill. That's not uncommon, many states are having similar votes. Also recently, the NY Government voted on (and passed) a no-fault divorce bill. That's less common, since NY was the last state to have such a law on its books.
In the comments section, you'll see that we debated issues regarding same-sex marriage and no-fault divorce, as well as religion and character. It was an interesting discussion. Same-sex marriage is a topic that triggers a lot of emotions. It's nice when people can stay focused and intelligent as well.
For my own part, I've never understood the same-sex marriage debate. The concept of judging others based on who they love, or telling people that love is "wrong," is something I can't even wrap my mind around. In addition to that - I believe that personal, especially religious, beliefs have no part in decisions regarding laws. Trying to figure out how anyone can think they have the right to judge the love another actually makes my head hurt. Here's why:
It generates revenue. The state gets money when they issue marriage licenses. There's a whole buncha people ready, willing and able to write the state a check so they can be married. As a property owner and tax payer, I say - rock on!
- Doing otherwise violates the separation of church and state. The reason for most votes against same-sex marriage (as noted in the post referred to earlier) is to protect the "sanctity of marriage." Protecting something's holiness or godliness is up to the church, not the government.
- It doesn't infringe on anyone's right. I was married in a civil ceremony. There was no mention of God anywhere (except by my father when he got the bar bill). No church recognized my marriage, but it was legal just the same. Same-sex marriages would be no different. No one is saying that a particular church (or any church, for that matter) would have to perform ceremonies, or even recognize the union. Again - it's a legal issue, not religious.
- It's less costly. We're spending a whole lotta dollars arguing over something that was never meant to be argued. The law is two adults. Period. Why spend all this energy and effort second-guessing ourselves? It's not worth it. Move on.
- Marriage is as much a legal, contractual relationship as it is anything else. Same-sex couples find ways to get around the legal issue, and give each other the rights that they'd have as married adults. How? By spending thousands in legal fees. So in the end, they are as much in love and committed as any other couple. What have you gained by opposing that union? Not a thing.
- (addendum) Recently, Proposition 8 was overturned in CA. A federal court ruled that it violates equal-protection. This is another argument in favor of same-sex marriage being legal - making it otherwise violates equal rights. Even if you don't support same-sex marriage, you have to protect the right, or risk other rights being removed in our society. Once we start threatening some rights, all rights are in jeopardy.
The bottom-line for me is I don't think anyone should judge others for who they love. There's enough misunderstanding, prejudice and hate in the world. I can't think of one good reason to prevent anyone from sharing more love, compassion and happiness.