Mixed Results: Obama Wins, But Gay Marriage In California Is Banned

While we were getting our minds blown over Barack Obama becoming president-elect, in California others were getting their minds blown in the worst way.

Proposition 8, a measure amending the state constitution to ban gay marriage, passed.

Anyone who has read this blog for a while knows I’m a Liberal proponent for civil rights issues and I consider the acceptance and tolerance of homosexuals a civil rights issue. I’m pro-gay rights. What two consenting adults do is of no business of mine.

I was happy that gays were finally allowed to legally marry in my old state of residence. A pair of my good friends there, two Lesbians were getting “divorced” at the same time the court granted gays the right to marry and we joked about the irony. But now it isn’t funny. This is a constitutional amendment taking away someone’s rights to legally be bound to the person they love, to join as one family and all the state/federal rights that come with it.

I realize that not every one shares my views on homosexuality, especially within the black community which is amazingly intolerant when it comes to gays and lesbians. Many black ministers were looming figures during the Prop 8 fight. It’s sadly ironic when black people start talking about infringing upon the rights of others. It was not too long ago when it was a regular debate as to whether or not the Negro had a soul. If we were more than three-fifths of a person. If we could drink from the same water fountain. If we could marry outside our race without fear of lynching. If we were more than beasts of burden meant to serve our white masters. If we were the living contradictions of being too dumb, violent and docile to survive.

And you can pull out the Bible and turn to Leviticus, but I will feel nothing. There is so much in Leviticus we pick and choose to follow. Never mind that historically many used the same Bible to justify our enslavement. I believe the references and allusions to homosexuality in the Bible should be taken into context. They are a reaction to the Romans and Greeks of the time. Their elite, politicians, wealthy, philosophers and military leaders were notorious fornicators with everything, from young boys to animals. If you were a Jewish philosopher/religious leader being oppressed by the hedonists of the empire, you’d write rules against their behavior too. But there are gay people on this earth because God created gay people. Allowing them to marry doesn’t destroy marriage. Divorce is the number one and sole killer of marriage. All gay marriage does is further normalize and equalize homosexuality and that is what this is about.

Much as letting me drink from the same fountain or have a hamburger at the counter meant there was no difference between myself and the white woman sitting next to me. Letting gays marry means that homosexuality is not some one-dimensional, hedonistic, sinful rot based on nothing but illicit choices and prurient desires. No. It is so glaringly ordinary people courted each other, fell in love and and wanted to solidify that bond.

No church has to marry anyone they don’t want to marry, but the state has NO RIGHT to infringe on the rights of homosexuals and I don’t buy the false argument that this will open up some Pandora’s Box of men marrying their Doberman Pinschers and horses or polygamy. This is still marriage between two consenting adults. But I know that doesn’t matter to those who don’t want the normalization of homosexuality in the same way those did not want (and still don’t want) the equalization and normalization of black people.

Basically, “we” have a lot of nerve when we call for the limiting of someone else’s rights. Especially when there are so many black people who are gays and lesbian who don’t feel the love and support of our community. All because we are so wrapped up in one passage in Leviticus and not the numerous others we ignore (shellfish, anyone?), not the other parts of the Bible we ignore, not acknowledging that we cherry pick and interpret as we choose in an effort to do to others what was done to us.

Make us not human.

I’m not gay, but I know that it’s going to take straight people and others like me to shove this country into that “more perfect union” promise. I’m human, we’re human and homosexuals are humans and they’re not going anywhere. Proposition 8 was a setback, but change is coming. Like it or not. The AIDS crisis brought homosexuality out of the shadows and into the mainstream as a life or death matter. Now the movement continues as a matter of acceptance and dignity. I’m sorry. I can never identify with the regulator, the conservative, “the morality sex police” when it comes to a majority-minority fight. My heart is always with people being oppressed. It’s always with the underdog.

Change is coming and I have a feeling the tidal wave will not start with the states or the courts, but with the US military. We’re fighting two wars and suddenly leaders find themselves dancing around “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” because they can’t afford to lose a soldier or Marine. Despite the status quo fighting it, I don’t see that rule surviving the Obama Administration. And just as when Harry S. Truman integrated the military it eventually lead to the integration of the country.

Change is coming. Tuesday night was just another case of two steps forward.

One step back.

85 thoughts on “Mixed Results: Obama Wins, But Gay Marriage In California Is Banned

  1. For the record, I make no “religious arguments” regarding legal unions or marriages. I’m a libertarian in this area and I bud out of these affairs. If gay people want to marry, I say let them eat (wedding) cake. They’re entitled to feel just as miserable as the rest of us.

  2. Okay…in no particular order:midwesterntransport – I take it that you are not a resident of California as I, so why would you automatically dismiss my comments about what rights domestic partners have in California? 2 seconds on the internet would have led you to:”A California domestic partnership is a legal relationship available to same-sex couples, and to certain opposite-sex couples in which at least one party is at least 62 years of age. It affords the couple virtually all of the same substantive legal benefits and privileges, and imposes upon the couple all of the same legal obligations and duties, that California law affords to and imposes upon a married couple.”Read the article for yourself:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domestic_partnership_in_CaliforniaShaun – you must agree that “change” is not always good. It’s just “change”. “marriage” is defined in the dictionary is a viable definition. If you speak English, this is the definition of a word in English and cannot be changed unless the majority of English speakers agree to change the definition. Slang words that officially enter the language is an example of this. And in general:I have just demonstrated that under the laws of my state, there is no reason at all to change the definition of “marriage” if the problem is that homosexual couples are denied the same rights as married heterosexual couples. The information that I have linked to above also says that we are the only state that has something like it. Let’s be honest, Black Snob was right, proposition 8 haters do not just want the rights that come with marriage (they have those in California) they want the validity – the holy status. To get that they are willing to change the very definition of “marriage” and the institution the word describes. That is why I voted “yes” for Prop 8. Many of you who disagree with me and took the time to comment, don’t even live in California. If you want to change the definition of marriage in your state…fine by me. But why would you wanna change it for me? What about my right? Oh, so the “needs” of the many outweigh the needs of the few? I can tell by some of the comments made in response to mine, that not everyone understands my points: I, nor anyone who is a Bible believing Christian, would support hurting, persecuting anyone for any reason. God really hates that. No where in the Bible can you find anything that says that God hates homosexuals more than any other sinners…and we are all sinners and without Jesus we all destined to go to the same place. Some of written that it’s wrong to reject homosexuality because of the religion, but we reject murder, theft, adultery, and lying due to religious sensibilities. Give me one reason why, if I’m bigger and stronger than you that it’s wrong to belittle you, destroy you, and take everything you have? How do you know it’s wrong. Ultimately, it’s wrong because God said so. Cherry picking from God’s standards is no standard at all. The folks who set up our laws originally had the Bible in mind, and unfortunately put it down when it came to how to deal with us, native Americans, and everyone who was different from them. Their fault, not God’s. This is why it’s important to defend the Bible’s validity. If it’s wrong about homosexuality, then why isn’t it wrong about murder? Or stealing? Or loving your neighbor as yourself? Either the Bible, all of it, is the word of God or it isn’t. And if we’re making up morality as we go then we are going to be having problems (which is why the economy is going down the tubes; before you dismiss that idea, consider: would we be in the economic messes we are in if we had have done business the way the Bible tells us how to?). If you don’t believe the Bible is an appropriate standard then what standard should we use? If we can find flaws, errors, and lies in it then I agree it should be thrown out like a bad movie. However, if it is true then we should follow it the best we can, trusting God to help us to do better. Therefore it’s accuracy and validity is very important to this debate.

  3. As Al Pacino said in the Godfather: “Just when I thought I was out, they bring me back in again!” Okay, one more time, Marcus, God doesn’t hate anything. It’s possible, that’s all. Second, Christians cherry pick from the Bible all the time. You don’t keep the feast days spelled out in the Old Testament anymore. I’m sure you eat “unclean” meats, etc. You don’t honor the seventh-day Sabbath as dictated in the Bible. And puleeze, spare me the talk of how the redemptive blood of Jesus abolishes such rules. The New Testament doesn’t do that, that’s Christians changing the rules again to suit their needs. Keep the faith, my brother, and I’ll see you in paradise.

  4. Draven, you were definitely raised seventh-day adventist. A great deal of my family is of that. Ever read Galations? As to why many Christians today do not live according to the feasts and ceremonial laws of the Old Testament, I would suggest reading Galatians. Paul does a much better job explaining the point. Reject my understanding of scripture is yours or anyone’s right. All well and good. Instead, give me a “better” understanding of what Paul wrote in:”When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.” Colossians 2:13-17Paul, who was about as Jewish as you can possibly be, was writing to Non-Jews. He was not saying not to follow the laws, only that you could not depend on them for salvation.For the record, although it’s not as sin to eat the things that dietary laws tells us not to eat, those thing do make me sick. And they made me sick before I knew the Bible told us not to eat them. He told the children of Israel not eat those things because He did not want them to have fun but so that they would be more healthy. Today, if we choose to eat (and who does eat the way we are supposed to, myself included) and live in a way contrary to what He said then we deserve what we get. Eating badly won’t send you to hell, but it sure makes life more difficult.

  5. I just love it when discussing the issue of “gay marriage” (I think that term is just as stupid as “illegal alien”) people use words like:- allow- lifestyle- preferenceCracks me up that people think that GLBT people wake up and decide to be second class citizens just like I must have woke up today and decided to be Black. I think it’s hilarious that someone has to ALLOW another person to be happy and be with the one person that completes them and makes their life more worth living.I guess you CHOOSE to be heterosexual, you CHOOSE to be male or female, you CHOOSE to be whatever color you are, you CHOOSE to have two arms, two legs, two eyes, etc.Yeah, stupid gays for not choosing to be straight. Gosh, if only they would just stop having desires, a heart and emotions and just go live in a closet for the rest of their lives, then everything would be OK.I don’ eat meat. I don’t agree with people’s CHOICE to consume animal flesh or wear fur. I don’t agree with everyone’s religion. But Lord knows I don’t work actively to deny another human being the ability to feed themselves, wear tacky fur and practice whatever faith they adhere to.Snob made point after point about how racial minorities and women had to get permission to do everything from vote to own a house. And we all know how stupid that notion is.The one thing I will echo that was brought up a kajillion comments ago is that the gay community does do a piss-poor job of diversifying itself. Gay people of color exist, but you wouldn’t know it when you look at the ranks of HRC and see the face of the Prop 8 opposition.Great, giant leaps have been made, but that doesn’t mean oppression, hatred and bigotry ended when we elected our first Black president. The struggle continues.

  6. marilynjean echoed an excellent point Black Snob previously said: “Snob made point after point about how racial minorities and women had to get permission to do everything from vote to own a house. And we all know how stupid that notion is.”Here is where I think the difference is. Men denied those rights to racial minorities and women, not God. God gave us all those rights. He did not give us the “right” to redefine “marriage”. He defines what marriage is because he made us and marriage. The only way you can argue against this, is to set aside the Bible. I’m sure everyone agrees with that. So then everyone has to come to their own conclusion. “Is the Bible real? What will I do about it?”

  7. Ok ,I thought I would just give up but if my brother in Christ Marcus keeps going I guess I should keep giving my opinion. (God Bless you Marcus)Many of you have said that using religion as an argument is weak. Our law is based on common law which is based upon customs, social morays, and religion. Written law only caught up to what was going on for centuries. If we were to redefine marriage we would be ignoring a lot of history and tradition. Many of you have wisely said that as blacks we should be careful when the rights of others are in danger. I agree and think that civil unions should guarantee gays the same rights as heterosexual couples. Again my main concern is the church. This evening I saw a report on Fox news saying that there have been protest in front of a Mormon church which gave money for Prop 8. The church exercised its right to infulence the state. Just like it does with other social issues from abortion to censorship issues. The protesters also exercised their right to protest, which is fine but is this the fate of every church that stands against gay marriage. The problem is that the issue really isn’t about getting the same rights but about making what gays do ok to all people. The church in many ways is the biggest opposition. Abortion is currently legal but I think it is wrong if it were to become illegal I would obviously still think it is wrong. These opinion are based upon truths. Truth never changes. To my legally scholars no one has yet to answer my question. If we do disregard customs, religion (the Bible) as a guide to the definition of marriage then what is it. Why can’t it be more than two people. Why can’t it be relatives?? What grounds do you have to stand on ??

  8. Marcus, I knew you were going to throw Paul’s writings at me. That’s the hallowed escape clause that Christians use. I can’t convince you of my views and you’ll definitely never change my perspective. Let me say, though, that when the “written code” was nailed literally or symbolically to the cross, it’s funny that it only abolished the Sabbath and keep the other 9 Commandments active. That’s a nice, juicy cherry, Marcus. Yes, I was raised an Adventist and like Paul said, I was a “Hebrew of the Hebrews.” I left that dogma long ago and with no regrets, my friend (Yikes, I sound like McCain). I feel lucky that I don’t think like traditional Christians anymore. Still, I respect your opinions and hope you stay in faith. Peace and light always

  9. Marilynjean, I don’t think gay people have much choice in determining their sexual orientation. In my previous posts, I gave two possible reasons for why a person may be gay. Since I can’t prove it, it’s only a theory, but I support it because I think the doctor who postulates it is very credible. I offer no judgment on a person’s sexuality, whether it’s gay or straight. I used to believe that homosexuality is genetic, and perhaps it is to some extent. I’m not totally sure, to tell you the truth. Look at me, I have MS, which is really referred to as a woman’s disease because they get it 4 to 1, as opposed to men. While I’m not effeminate, many people have noted feminine qualities in me (No, I don’t have a limp wrist), and so maybe there’s a link there with the disease. Who knows what causes anything? Scientists now say criminals are born that way. I guess we can’t escape our genes. That’s why I believe two consenting gay adults should be allowed to marry, and I think one day that will happen. Many people aren’t ready for it now, and if gay want to marry, they should start changing people’s opinions.

  10. Anonymous, I think the slippery slope argument itself is weak. We can legalize gay marriages, while prohibiting someone from marrying his goat or daughter. Second, when you say “truth never changes,” it appears that you’re looking at things in absolutes. That’s fine but a lot of people don’t see the world that way. What is truth today, may become a lie tomorrow. Every day I find some new medical or scientific fact replacing an old one. Hundreds of years ago, people sacrifice animals and fellow human beings to their gods. In these times, we know that this is wrong and we no longer follow such practices. If I lived in the 18th century, I probably could have married my 12-year-old cousin. Today I would be on “To Catch a Predator” and getting handcuffed by the police. It’s not always good to see things in absolutes.

  11. It’s so frustrating trying to argue with religious fundamentalists because they’re so *right* about what they know. I guess they only way you’ll see a different perspective is when it touches you personally and you see for yourself that two people of the same gender who want to have their union legitimized by the State and recognized fully by their families and communities is in no way a threat to your beliefs or your Church.

  12. “I don’ eat meat. I don’t agree with people’s CHOICE to consume animal flesh or wear fur. I don’t agree with everyone’s religion. But Lord knows I don’t work actively to deny another human being the ability to feed themselves, wear tacky fur and practice whatever faith they adhere to.” Pray tell, who is preventing you from being gay?

  13. Draven, that still doesn’t answer the question. Was Paul wrong? Did he mean that now the sabbath was worthless. By your response, I think you reject Paul’s epistles. Do you also reject the Books of Moses? Which books of the Bible do you follow? Jesus said that the sabbath created for man, not man for the sabbath (Mark 2:27). Considering that the Hebrew calendar does not coincide with our own identically, including how they count days, equating Saturday as the true sabbath is a stretch…a debatable matter. If I hold Sunday as more special than Saturday because that is the day that Jesus rose from the dead, why condemn me for that? Romans 14:5-8 says, concerning matters of taste and personal preference that God has not called sin:”One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.”

  14. When Anonymous wrote that “truth never changes”, the point is valid because if something is wrong at any time it’s wrong today. Human sacrifice has always been wrong because no one belongs to another in the way that they have the right to destroy them. It’s an absolute and it’s in the Bible that God does not like it. When the “slippery slope” argument was made, I agree because, if the definition of marriage is so fluid then why do you have the right to tell Joe-the-Pedaphile that he can’t marry a 12 year-old-boy? Why can’t Mrs. So-and-so marry a goat? If we start calling same-sex-unions “marriage”, those people who do the kinds of things that monogamous homosexuals abhor will feel left out and will eventually argue that they have the same “civil rights” to pursue their own ideas of what happiness is. We need to seek happiness on God’s terms not ours. Enslaving any race of people and breaking up their families is wrong and condemned in the Bible. It was wrong before America did it. It was wrong during the time America was doing it. And it’s wrong to do it now. And it will be wrong tomorrow. dkan71, I rally don’t want to frustrate anyone. If you think I’m wrong in how I’ve interpreted the Bible, demonstrate it. Show that I has misapplied, misquoted, or misrepresented anything in your understanding. “Come let us reason together….” Isaiah 1:18If you take issue with what the Bible itself says. That is an entirely different point. One that can be discussed and demonstrated that the Bible is what it says it is. Regardless, anyone can do or say as they see fit — take it up with Jesus when you see him.

  15. Marcus, it’s really sad to see Christians use twisted logic in trying to justify the breaking of a supposedly sacred law–honoring the Sabbath day. Jews have been keeping the original Sabbath forever, and they don’t use calendar arguments to justify violations of the rule. When you said he choose to keep Sunday because it’s the day of the crucifixion, you only confirm that Christians conveniently change the rules and cherry pick themselves. The 10 Commandments were supposed to be an everlasting covenant, although it’s funny that only one of them–the Fourth law–was crossed off. Puleeze, you can’t win this, so I implore you to keep your rules and follow your heart.

  16. Um, Jesus was resurrected on the first day of the week. For us that Sunday. It’s not crossing off the fourth commandment. Your argument side-steps and doesn’t even begin to address the points I brought up. What about what Jesus said. What about what Paul said. If you haven’t thought about it or can’t reconcile it with how you understand the 10 commandments…then just admit that rather than just dismissing my points. I gave my reasons, from scripture why it’s valid to go to worship on Sunday and not Saturday. What are yours for not worshipping? Here is more: God told Moses that the sabbath was a sign to other nations that they are his. He said it was for them and their children. No where does scripture say that it was for gentiles living in a non-Jewish context. All you have to do is show that the scripture says that it does and I’ll shut up. In fact scripture says opposite. And I provided the references. Where are yours? If you wanna hold Tuesday more sacred than any other day of the week, God honors that. In addition, under the strictist observation of the sabbath, you could not drive a car on the sabbath. I know of no Jewish community that teaches that. Let alone,back in the day, breaking the sabbath was a death sentence. Jesus dealt with all that when he was here. You can be free…but only on God’s terms. If anyone wants to discuss what those terms are, I invite it.

  17. 10 minutes ago I caught my own error about the crucifixion day and I knew it would be the first thing you would correct. That’s typical penny ante stuff. No, Marcus, I won’t debate you further on the Sabbath issue and it’s not a Jewish day. The 10 Commandments, if you are to observe them, were supposed to be a universal set of rules. Christians, including Paul, try to change doctrine to fix their own perception of things. As you can see, I don’t think Paul was speaking God’s word everytime he put something down on paper. Based on my premise, we have no basis on which to discuss the Bible. You accept it as a completely holy document and I don’t. Anyway, I hope you keep studying and trusting in God. Peace, light and happiness always

  18. Hello again.I’m the original anonymous from this thread. Draven7When I said there are absolutes, I didn’t mean everything is an absolute. But Draven7 you basically made my point. There are forces that change how we view certain issues. Twenty years age even the most liberal of people wouldn’t not have believed that we could be having this conversation. Society changes and technologies, war, and social movement effect how it changes. We are a country that is home to many cultures many that don’t have are values and social traditions. Lets say there is a culture that does marry children or has relations with animals (I can’t name any but I know there but have been some somewhere). If they protest and their voices are heard would we be able to ban their practices. What ground would we have to stand on. If we change the definition of marriage once, whats to say that we don’t do it again. Again, with all the Christians I spoken with we all mostly agree. I don’t care what goes on between two people in private and they also should be given all rights, but don’t change the definition of marriage.

  19. Draven, obviously you consider the day of Jesus’ resurrection “typical penny ante stuff” because you don’t consider the Bible to be a holy and infalliable book. And because we can’t agree on that, we can’t talk about what Bible says and come to agreement. I just find it interesting at why you accuse me of cherry-picking if you don’t think every word of the Bible is divinely inspired while I do. That is what I would call cherry-picking. If you consider the 10 commandment a universal set of rules then do you also believe that the should be followed? If you do, then do you think they were divinely inspired or just something that Moses pulled out of one of his orifices? Further, if you are not looking at the whole counsel of scripture how do you know you are understanding it correctly? If you are unwilling to discuss which parts of the Bible are true and inspired then we have nothing to discuss. But if you are willing to explain your point of view, I’m more than willing to hear it.

  20. I have to second princessbutterfly’s comments. I believe that gays should get the rights of marriage, inheritance, etc. but I do not want to see the definition of marriage changed. I am concerned that ministers will be charged with discrimination if they choose to uphold a traditional marriage belief by denying gay couples marriage ceremonies in the church. Just thought I would be honest.

  21. Thank you so much for posting this. I needed so badly to read something positive like this – something that reaffirmed the message that one day, change would come – instead of all the sniping and finger-pointing and blaming that’s been going on among the No On 8 groups since 8 passed.We need to come together and fight for change, not let our movement dissolve into nothing more than vicious namecalling.I hope you’re right. I almost believe you are.

  22. I just want to tell those who are concerned that if marriage by the state and federal government was expanded to include homosexual couples it WOULD NOT affect church rules. The government CANNOT tell a church nor make a church accept homosexuality or gay marriage. If using the government to fix religion were an option the Womenpriests movement within and outside of the Catholic Church would simply sue the church for gender discrimination, but they can’t because the government cannot and will not interfere with the church’s rules on who can be a priest. The Catholic Church believes women can’t be priests. The only way to change the rules is to appeal to the church directly. Not through the government. So the “definition” of marriage would ONLY change in government. The same went for Mormons who originally didn’t accept blacks as members or ministers. We couldn’t sue to get that, the LDS church had to change on their own. Just like the LDS church had to outlaw polygamy on their own at the turn of the century. Much like the government wouldn’t do anything if a minority was being discriminated against in a predominately white church, specifically the Southern Baptist Church which had nothing to do with black people for decades.Government CANNOT change the church’s definition or tell them what they can or cannot believe otherwise you’d have gay people suing churches for discrimination to alter the churches. You can’t. Separation of church and state stops that. That’s why I think the definition argument isn’t valid. It doesn’t change the definition for the church or the individual. Nothing can change the definition for the church BUT the church. It changes it for the government only and our government is supposed to be ruled by a “godless” constitution. The only time a church opens itself up for litigation is under the most egregious circumstances, like how the Catholic church never dealt with their pedophile priest issues, or rogue fundamentalist Mormon churches who marry off young girls or practice polygamy. You’re not breaking the law by preaching against homosexuality or gay marriage. The Bill of Rights covers the church’s right to oppose it if it chooses to do so. Nothing will change that unless they change the Bill of Rights.But if you start actively harming, harassing or intimidating gay people THEN there would be a problem. As long as everyone stays in their own sandbox and no laws are broken (re: vandalism, harassment, etc.), the church is protected and will always be protected. No minister will get in trouble for preaching against it.I mean, this is an extreme example but the KKK is not an illegal organization. Neither is any white power hate group. They can write, preach and peacefully protest all the live long day PROTECTED by the Bill of Rights. They ONLY get in trouble when they threaten, intimidate, harass, hurt or kill someone. Other than that, they can pretty much do whatever they want. It’s not against the law to hate minorities, Jews, women, ANYONE. Like I said, an extreme example, but that should tell you something that if they aren’t taking the Klan’s free speech rights away and they’re utterly repellent they’re not going to take the church’s rights away.And people LIKE church.Honestly, I CANNOT say that enough. Your fears really are unfounded here. Like the US government is no fan of the Nation of Islam, but they can’t do anything to them. All the government can do is sit around and hope they’ll break a law, like illegally stockpile weapons, a la the Branch Dividians. The government can’t touch the Church of Scientology despite the many complaints people have had against it because IT IS A CHURCH and is therefore protected from things businesses can only dream to be protected from. You’re safe. The minister is safe. The only thing that can get a minister in trouble is if they endorse a political candidate and tell the flock who to vote for.I realize this still won’t be reassuring enough for some people, but if our country is willing to protect our hate groups, I’m pretty sure they’ll continue to protect the churches’ free speech rights considering the vast majority of the members of our government consider themselves to be the followers of some form of faith.

  23. Marcus, the part I called penny ante that you missed the point I was making. You said you choose to honor Sunday because it’s the “Lord’s Day,” the day Christ was supposedly resurrected on. That’s cherry picking, deciding what day you want to honor is just that. I said it was penny ante because when I slipped a little and said Sunday was the day of the crucifixion, you jumped all over it. That’s nitpicking, trying find to a weakness in my argument. It doesn’t change anything. Christians make up the rules to whenever they see fit. Moreover, the 10 Commandments are universal laws if you’re going to follow the Bible as a holy book. They were meant to apply to everyone, and it laughable that you assert that they were given to Jews only. Quite funny, really. Since I don’t subscribe to either point of view, the Commandments aren’t laws that I have to adopt. I see the Bible as a document with a lot of insight, wisdom and knowledge. Some of it inspired as any great literature and art is. You can write something right now, and if it’s profound and enlightening, I can say that it’s also inspired by God. God speaks to all us, not just the ancients. BTW, I see Christ as a miracle man with the highest state of consciousness. He could even be in the Godhead on the other side. At any rate, one day we’ll know the answers and I don’t lose sleep at night thinking about it.

  24. Miss Snob, you lost me on the part about ministers getting into trouble if they endorse a candidate. They do it all the time and that’s their right. They’re still going to their tax breaks as well.

  25. Black Snob, the reason why people are concerned that ministers can be sued for not supporting gay marriage is because such things have happened before. You have stated that the Mormon allowed Blacks and outlawed polygamy. These are examples of faith and practice being changed due to government interfereance. The federal government said to the Mormons that we will jail you if you continue polygamy because you are breaking the laws of the United States. I've studied some history of the Mormon church by looking at apologetic debates and this is a hot topic as to how valid some of the claims of the Mormons (which I will not get into here). For more see the work of Dr.Walter Martin who was excellent at witnessing and talking to Mormons with gentleness and respect. The point is that Mormons did not get rid of polygamy on their own. The top leader at the time "heard" from God and due to that "revelation" they got rid of polygamy after the government made an issue of it. Please research this if you don't believe me. On top of that black people were barred from the Mormons because they were not considered human or worthy of salvation since the days of their Founder, Joseph Smith. They only started to allow Black people because of the weight of the civil rights movement in the 1960's. I do not think that its good idea to assume that gay people will not be able to sue churches to make them accept homosexuality because it's already happening in the United Kingdom. I saw a story in the past few month. Look at this link: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-417582/Vicars-sued-refusing-bless-gay-weddings-fears-Church.htmlIn addition, just recently, Bible Publisher Zondervan is being sued for their translation of the Bible because it hurts the feelings of the homosexual platiff named Bradley Fowler. His complaint is with 1 Corinthians 6:9 and how it lists homosexuality in a list of sins. See http://endtimespropheticwords.wordpress.com/2008/07/10/zondervan-faces-60m-federal-lawsuit-over-bible-homosexuality/Fowler said that it's a mistranslation. Here is a list of several translations and how that verse is rendered: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20Corinthians%206:9;&version=31;9;49;50;Each translation says the same thing but not in the same English words. In the Greek the offending word is "aresenokotes" (Strong's number: 733) and the lexicon I own is "one engaging in homosexual acts, sexual deviant". As far as I know when the 1st Century readers read "aresenokotes" the understood Paul was writing about Homosexuals….what they do as being offensive not who they are or something that God cannot deliver them from. Here is the whole passage,verses 9 and 10 (NIV):Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

  26. Draven, I’m surprised that you said I jumped all over you. If you felt that way then I apologize. I think it’s not correct to call me “cherry-picking” just because I look at the Old Testament the way Jesus, Paul, and the first Century Christian church looked at it. If you disagree, prove they didn’t and instead believed and taught the way you do. It’s important to know what you believe and why because…If you are right and I am wrong then it won’t matter because everyone will be in perfect paradise and in perfect communion with God and each other after we die and leave this plane of existence. The problem is that the Bible says that you are not correct. And if the Bible is right and you are not, then everyone who refuses to come to God through Jesus will end up totally and completely separated from God in the Lake of Fire. Really, really high stakes. People’s souls hang in the balance. That is why I care…I don’t want anyone to miss out on Heaven and the wonderous promises of God. I think you may wanna take another look at your beliefs and be really, really sure. In your position, I would not be able to sleep so soundly. I’m praying for you. I don’t agree with all the seventh-day adventist doctrines, but on all that truly matters we agree. You really, really should take another look. And hey, why not do something really novel. Go to God and ask yourself. You will get an answer and it won’t be the “course of miracles” text you will be pointed to.

  27. I’m very sure, my brother Marcus. I totally know there’s an afterlife. I have friends who are psychic and I’ve had too many supernatural events to validate happenings on the other side. I do believe in a spiritual plane described as Hell. I ain’t going there. That’s reserved for people under demonic influence, who go there willingly. God doesn’t cast them there. As I said before, he’s not punishing anyone and anyone can walk out Hell if they can find their way. Don’t worry about other souls. Many of them will be fine. Stay in faith and peace always

  28. We can sit around and argue about this issue for years and never see eye to eye. I guess we’d rather battle it out; to blame or accuse each others beliefs rather than look for solutions. But I understand why, it’s easier.Okay, here’s one solution:If the word “marriage” has so much religious connotations in it, why not strike marriage out of all government language and documents? Moreover, if there’s supposed to be a “separation of church and state”, why is it that both sides feel the need of government to define this somewhat religious term? IMO, the government (local, state, and federal) shouldn’t recognize any so-called “marriage” whether it be between homosexuals or heterosexuals. Its major responsibility is to enforce the rights of the two people in question, and get its money accordingly (taxes). Change everything to “Domestic Partnerships” or “Civil Unions”, and let Religion continue to define what constitutes a marriage. [steps off soapbox]On another note, one of the things I find is a little unfair is to look at the results by how each ethnicity voted. Blacks aren’t a very prominent percentage of the electorate here in CA, yet there are some who point the finger of blame at the 70% of Black voters and accuse them of its passing. I honestly thought that age or campaign $$$ spent per county would’ve been a better indicator of the results but I guess the media found a sexier story w/ Blacks and Latinos as scapegoats.

  29. OK black independent you have convinced this Black Christian Protestant. Strike the word marriage from government documents, IRS codes, etc. I’m fine with that (as if my opinion matters – smile).Leave marriage to the religious institutions to decide and let the government recognize civil unions. Now will these partnerships only be between 2 adults, or could more than 2 participate in a partnership? Not that is matters, I’m just curious

  30. For that matter, what about corporations? Since legally corporations are persons then could I marry one? What about marrying Microsoft? In California, you could divorce Microsoft in that case, and get half of its assets. Anyone want to live in that kind of world?

  31. I don’t buy the false argument that this will open up some Pandora’s Box of men marrying their Doberman Pinschers and horses or polygamyWhether or not such a Pandora’s Box would be opened depends on the rationale for legal recognition of same-sex “marriage”. Here is a list of reasons (none of them mutually exclusive):1. Personal belief that same-sex unions constitute marriage2. Belief that recognition would be beneficial to society.3. Belief that gender discrimination is wrong.4. Belief that sexual orientation discrimination is wrong.5. Belief that people should be free to marry any consenting persons that they please.Reasons 1-3 do not lead to support for polygamy, while 4 and 5 do.

  32. Mr. Ejercito. You have made the following assertions and I would like to see justification. My comments are in italicsI don’t buy the false argument that this will open up some Pandora’s Box of men marrying their Doberman Pinschers and horses or polygamyWhether or not such a Pandora’s Box would be opened depends on the rationale for legal recognition of same-sex “marriage”.Here is a list of reasons (none of them mutually exclusive):1. Personal belief that same-sex unions constitute marriage Why?2. Belief that recognition would be beneficial to society. How?3. Belief that gender discrimination is wrong. How does keeping the definition the definition of marriage constitute gender discrimination? (Keep in mind that domestic partners in California have the same rights and responsibilities as heterosexual married couples.)4. Belief that sexual orientation discrimination is wrong. How does keeping the definition of marriage as it is, discriminate against anyone’s sexual orientation? It has nothing to do with sexual orientation or preference.5. Belief that people should be free to marry any consenting persons that they please. Why? Reasons 1-3 do not lead to support for polygamy, while 4 and 5 do. Therefore do you support polygamy. It it ok? If it isn’t why isn’t it? By your own words, you have 2 beliefs that lead to polygamy. How do you justify banning polygamy?

  33. How does keeping the definition the definition of marriage constitute gender discrimination? (Keep in mind that domestic partners in California have the same rights and responsibilities as heterosexual married couples.)If a man is allowed to marry a woman but a woman is not allowed to marry a woman, that is constitute gender discrimination. The question is whether this is wrongful gender discrimination. For the record, I do not think it is wrongful, the state does have an interest in promoting opposite-sex monogamy, as it is the foundation for stable families. Others disagree, hence the debate over legal recognition of same-sex “marriage”. . How does keeping the definition of marriage as it is, discriminate against anyone’s sexual orientation? It has nothing to do with sexual orientation or preference.If the state treats some relationships different from others, that is discrimination. This is not necessarily wrong; the state has a compelling interest to promote opposite-sex monogamy for the reason I listed above. Others disagree, hence the debate. Therefore do you support polygamy. It it ok? If it isn’t why isn’t it? By your own words, you have 2 beliefs that lead to polygamy. How do you justify banning polygamy?I never claimed those were my beliefs.

  34. Anonymous & Marcus: sorry I didn't get back to your previous post 10 days ago (been busy w/ work these last few weeks and checked this thread on a whim). Of course it would be the state's responsibility to detail exactly what constitutes a "domestic partnership" or a "civil union". More than likely the definition would be lined out as being a union of 2 consenting adults. Polygamy would be a whole other issue since it seems to be a bit on the confusing side when it comes to current law.Marcus, if you honestly believe that a corporation could/would physically give consent to a marriage, then yes, I suppose someone could technically "marry" a corporation in the scenario I proposed. Is it realistic? Probably not, considering for it to give consent the shareholders would have to vote on whether to "marry" (and what sane person w/ money at stake in a company would vote for something so ridiculously risky, given the end-result you stated?). However, since a corporation is really only a legal entity, and not a natural person like you or me, I would like to think that marriage would fall under that category of things that only natural persons can do under our Constitution (e.g. the right to freely exercise a religion, a belief, or have spirituality). But I'm a little rusty on the specifics of our constitutional law, so don't hold me to that.Look, we see eye-to-eye when it comes to the definition of the word "marriage"; I also believe it's a religious term that signifies a union between a man and a woman. Personally, I'm just to apathetic about the cause to withhold certain benefits from a particular group of people. Besides, the underlying issue is the word "marriage" itself, which is why I can see a lot of religious people willing to give homosexuals those said benefits but be against "gay marriage". That's why I say strike the word "marriage" out any government language. IMO, it's kind of a bitter-sweet compromise, both sides wins and yet both sides loses.

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