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By the way, No one is looking to get "gay married".

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last1standing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:01 PM
Original message
By the way, No one is looking to get "gay married".
There never has been and never will be "gay marriage" just as there is no "straight marriage". The only issue up for debate is the contract of marriage and every person's inalienable right, granted by the Constitution's 14th Amendment, to have an equal ability to enter into a contract with any other person of their choice.

Let me say that again:

Every law or state amendment that prohibits the lawful exercise of entering into a contract with another adult citizen of the United States of America is Constitutionally illegal and void.

Want to read it for yourself?

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Now, if you can put a hole in that, please let me hear about it.
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Maven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. Thank you. The issue is *marriage equality*
I hate seeing the term "gay marriage" because it's a RW frame designed to impart the idea of a new institution being tacked onto the old one. In fact, all we're asking is to be included in an institution that already exists.
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justiceischeap Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
9. I hate seeing the phrase "gay rights" too
It's another RW frame. It makes it sound like we're asking for "special" rights and all we're looking for are civil, equal, human rights. (I now use the civil, equal, human thing because someone told me yesterday in another post that AAs "own" civil rights, women "own" equal rights, so us gays get "human rights." I figured I'd string them all together because there are black LGBTs, female Ls and we're all human.)
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LeftyMom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:05 PM
Response to Original message
2. rec'd
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:06 PM
Response to Original message
3. "marriage" is religious bullshit
it should be relegated to churches... and they can "marry" whoever the fuck they want.

The govt. should do nothing but civil unions.
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last1standing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. That's a non-starter.
There is no way marriage is going to be taken out of the hands of the state regardless of the merits in doing so. And since the institution is the marriage contract, it must be applied equally to all citizens regardless of race, sex, or orientation as outlined in the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:26 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. until the line between 'god's marriage' and 'legal marriage' gets unblurred
this is going to be the same fight ... over and over and over

people conflate the two and the quickest way to break that false link is to simply change the name of what the government does.
It might sound hard but it's really pretty simple.

"THE GOVT. CAN'T TELL MY CHURCH WHAT TO DO!!!"

You'll never get the religious faithful to agree that gays should be able to be "married" by the state as long as the churches are opposed to it on moral grounds.
You will be able to get them behind the idea of protecting their church against government encroachment.
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last1standing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. I understand your point and agree, but its still a non-starter.
And, as I stated in the OP, this isn't a matter of public opinion or popularity. This is a Constitutional issue plain and simple. It must go before the courts to decide based on the 14th Amendment.

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.


We either have equality for ALL citizens in this country or we have mob rule. For once, there is no gray area.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:51 PM
Response to Reply #10
13. I agree that it's a constitutional issue
but until the distinction is made between religious and legal marriage it doesn't really matter.

The constitution can't tell a church they have to marry gay people.
Period.

And that's exactly what a lot of the people opposed to gay marriage are really opposed to.
(regardless of it being accurate)

think tai chi ... use their energy to our advantage
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last1standing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 12:26 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. The court can't tell a church to marry straight people, either.
A marriage license is a contract issued by the state that entails certain legal bonds and benefits, nothing more or less. The courts (if honestly concerned with the Constitution) must rule in favor of marriage equality. This is not about framing an argument or winning the hearts and minds of the ignorant. This is about the protections of the Constitution and the rights it grants to ALL citizens.

As for the tai chi, I'm not sure what you mean there but I think I'm safe in stating that their energy doesn't matter here. This is a civil right that must be ruled on, not a vote that needs to be won.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 12:48 AM
Response to Reply #15
17. you're missing what I said
civilly it's pretty clear.. it's simply equal rights.
I agree completely.

But when people hear marriage they think 'church'... and if their church thinks gay marriage is wrong they're going to oppose it.
They conflate legal marriage with church marriage so they see the demands for gay marriage as an encroachment of govt on the church/morality.
That changes it (for them) from an issue of civil rights to 'sanctity of marriage'.

re: tai chi
I agree that the court can't tell a church who it can or can't marry.
The fundies and semi-religious would vehemently oppose the government telling the church what it can do as well.

If the argument is framed in those terms your opponents become your allies.



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last1standing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 01:23 AM
Response to Reply #17
20. I think our disagreement boils down to this.
You believe that we can separate marriage and civil unions as constructs of church and state respectively. While logically I believe this should be done (France already does this and the model works wonderfully), I don't agree with your next statement that we could get the fundies to agree to it.

Fundamentalists do not believe in separation of church and state. They seek to combine the two under the umbrella of a Christian State. Any attempt to remove the religious and contractual intertwining of a marriage contract would have them beating down the doors of Congress. In other words, it just isn't going to happen. To think that it would is to misunderstand the entire fundamentalist movement. There is no way you can frame it that they would agree to. None.

But all of that merely dances around the real point of my OP and subsequent posts. This is not an argument for framing, it is not a debate for winning, it is not a philosophical discussion for the purpose of changing minds. This is a Constitutional imperative and must be treated as such. Basic Constitutional rights cannot be put on the block for popular opinion votes. They cannot be given or taken away by a base majority. The purpose of the Constitution is to shield us from the vagaries of popular opinion. No mob rule.

So while I respect your suggestion, and agree with it in a perfect world scenario, I would rather cast my lot with the Constitution than a mob rule proposition or a 51-49 vote in Congress.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:35 AM
Response to Reply #20
24. Well put
Edited on Fri Nov-07-08 02:41 AM by Clovis Sangrail
though the way to get fundies to go along with this seems rather clear to me.

Most of the people I've met who are opposed to gay marriage are more opposed to government constraints on religion.
I've successfully argued gay marriage from this angle with more than one of them by pointing out that this is govt constraint on religion.
After that the issue changes from the govt not recognizing same sex unions to the govt recognizing some religions and not others.

We're both obviously on the same side of this issue, but unfortunately our current environment makes it very clear that this is an argument that needs framing, it is a debate that has to be won, and it will require philosophical discussion in order to change minds.

The constitution is a framework for the process of democracy - we have to fight to make sure its tenets are followed.
If the constitution was completely black and white we could replace the entire judicial system with computers.
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WhollyHeretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. No it's not. It is a civil contract.
The term is not going to be changed.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:42 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. pay attention to the people opposed to gay marriage
they aren't basing their arguments on any sort of 'civil' grounds.

Their church says marriage is a holy institution and gay marriage is wrong.
Since both the civil and legal institutions use the same name - 'marriage' - any attempted change of 1 seen as an attempted change of the other.
(and people hate when the govt tell their church what to do)

Best to just make the distinction clear (for everyone)

You want to get "married"?
That's your business and you do it in a church.

You want the state to recognize your union?
Fine, bring the paperwork to the clerk.

Seems to make more sense that way.
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WhollyHeretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:46 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. There is no way you could get rid of marriage. In the bigots mind it would be proof that gays were
trying to destroy their marriage. Gay marriage is in a number of states.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. I never said to get rid of marriage
anybody can get married by whatever church will marry them
marriage is a religious institution and shouldn't be a government function.

The govt should only concern itself with the legalities surrounding people who have decided to legally join together.
I don't want the govt performing marriages any more than I want the church running the DMV
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Luminous Animal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #3
16. No it should not be...
Marriage is already a civil contract. Clergy has been merely granted the privilege to perform such. If churches are reluctant to shoulder the responsibility of carrying out that civic duty, then it is they who should abandon it. Not the state.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 01:07 AM
Response to Reply #16
18. you've got it backwards
religious marriage predates legal marriage (and the US)
The state recognized religious marriage as a civil contract... and eventually started performing them as well.
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Luminous Animal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 01:21 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. No I do not.
You cannot be legally married by any clergy. You can only be legally married by clergy that is recognized by the state. I do not care who started it (and by the way... you are wrong) but, as it stands now in this United States, marriage is a civil contract that the state confers the right to most (not all) clergy to perform. The state also confers that same right to civil servants, judges, justices of the peace, county clerks, and other civil employees. Every person who gets married in a religious ceremony must also sign a civil document which the clergyperson then turns over to the state which then issues a marriage certificate.
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Clovis Sangrail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:11 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. 0.0
Edited on Fri Nov-07-08 02:14 AM by Clovis Sangrail
So legal marriage predated religious marriage hunh?
First I've heard of that.

Marriage as a holy institution is mentioned multiple times in the bible, taking that concept back to at least 250ad (assuming we're only dating from verified write dates)
Various Egyptian texts refer to marriage as far back as the 3rd intermediate period (~900bc)- and while it wasn't completely religious based it very definitely had a religious component and no visible legal component.
And before you bring up Hammurabi (if you had even thought of this) you should realize that he codified marriage... the institution obviously existed prior to this or he wouldn't have written about the way he did.
The evidence points to Babylonian marriage being a religious ceremony held in temples
- putting religious marriage back to at least ~1700bc

Early marriages were basically essential social contracts that came wrapped in religion for enforcement because there was no such thing as 'legal' marriage contracts.

Regarding the rest.. trying to fly the idea that priests are only allowed to marry people because the state says so would be a serious case of biting your nose to spite your face.



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Captiosus Donating Member (711 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:22 AM
Response to Reply #19
22. You do have it wrong.
And if you need proof that Clovis is right, I'll send you a picture of my great-grandfather's proof of marriage from right here in the good old United States. The family Bible.

Clovis makes a solid argument that the reason marriage is so tied to religion is because religion was the only way to be married for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. Marriage did not become a government endorsed civil contract until recent history when it had to for the purposes of record keeping and taxation.

Even into the late 1800s, right here in the United States, marriages were performed by religious clergy. They were considered legal and binding and the only proof of marriage was the record in the family bible signed by the groom and the clergy performing the ceremony.

Of course, that having been said, the past is rather a moot point.
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Chulanowa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:24 AM
Response to Reply #18
23. Yes, religious predates state. Sort of
Religion and state were synonymous until the foundation of our nation, after all.

However, Chicken vs. Egg is irrelevant to the argument. In the united states of America, marriage is a legal contract. You have to get a marriage license from the state, then you can either go to the county clerk to get your marriage recognized, or go before a judge or some other deputy of the state, or, if you want, you can go to clergy of your choice. That clergy must ALSO have a required license to recognize your marriage in lieu of a state official.

Civil law is the ice cream. Clerical involvement is like sprinkles on top, totally optional.
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Idealism Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:12 PM
Response to Original message
4. There are many words for it
many ideas, many truths. Call it what you will but I boil it down to inequality. And I don't know what better word there is when we tell a minority group that they have less rights, less protections under the law, and even less of standing in society than that of the majority. Dead fucking wrong.
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bluedawg12 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-06-08 11:22 PM
Response to Original message
7. Good point.
Lesson learned.
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SweetieD Donating Member (517 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:36 AM
Response to Original message
25. There has never been a categorical right for a person to enter into any type of contract.
For example, you do not have a legal right to enter into a contract, where the activity is illegal, like you cannot enter into a contract to engage in prostitution (at least in most places). Actually there are a whole host of issues where an adult cannot enter into another contract with another adult. Specifically regarding marraige,(again in most jurisdictions that I'm aware of) an adult cannot legally enter into a contract of marraige with a sibling, even if both adults are consenting. Your interpretation of the 14th amendment is extremely broad and isn't the intrepretation that the supreme court has ever given it.


BTW before anyone jumps on me, as people seem to do here. I'm an atheist. I'm extremely liberal. I don't care about the religious definitions of marraige. I believe gay marraige and polygamous/polyandry marraiges should be permitted.
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