The Marriage Amendment
"Our founding fathers would have bristled at the thought of defining the obvious — A union between one man and one woman? Polygamy and homosexuality are not new phenomena — George Washington saw that and a whole lot more. What is new is saying marriage has more to do with sexual rights than having children and benefiting society with the unique stability of the traditional family".
..."Remind your senators, kindly and insistently, the Federal Marriage Act is about the family, not sex. It is not homophobic. It doesn’t bash gays. It is a pragmatic recognition of the changing times and circumstances. Ten years ago, President Clinton signed a good bill to protect the family. Today, President Bush wants to do the same, and together with members of Congress proposes a Constitutional amendment."
In Part II of this debate Father Jonathon offers six rational reasons for approving the amendment.
" The union of one man and one woman is not primarily a religious issue. It is a social phenomenon present in every known culture and it transcends all religions. The human desire to enter a committed relationship with another person of the opposite sex is, among other things, nature's motivation for humanity's self-promulgation."
"The state has no responsibility to give public stamps of approval to love relationships, but to foster societal good through the creation of law. In this context, it has always recognized its responsibility to regulate the institution of marriage as an essential way to do this, particularly given its procreative nature."
"Homosexual couples, or any other couple or grouping of people, already have the right to enter to enter into many legal and financial contracts that recognize the unique relationship they have, or wish to have, with one another. While there may be room in many states to expand this kind of legal recourse, there is no need to change the definition of the institution of marriage to conform to the desires of other relationships."
"The minimal number of homosexual couples who have chosen to take advantage of expanded marriage laws is the best proof that its promoters have greater interest in pushing the social acceptance of homosexuality, as such, than in the legal rights that new marriage laws would provide."
"There is no reason any given homosexual marriage will effect negatively a heterosexual couple's commitment to one another. Nevertheless, redefining marriage to make room for homosexuality, polygamy, or polyamery changes, ever so slowly, the value society places on the unique institution of marriage, including its two natural ends of procreation and complementary union of the spouses. Okay, I know this one is hard to swallow and we'll need more time to examine data."
"All laws are discriminatory. They discriminate between what is good and bad for society in relation to the question at hand. Laws that define marriage as only between one man and one woman do not discriminate against homosexuals as people, but as their ability to comply with the inherent nature and objectives of the institution being regulated. To compare the acceptance of two men marrying each other with the acceptance of interracial marriage, as some have done, is disingenuous and offensive."
read more @: Beyond Religion, Marriage Act Debate Part II
"The poll of 1,002 adults May 8-11 shows that by a 58-39 percent margin American adults oppose redefining marriage to include homosexuals. Additionally, 50 percent favor and 47 percent oppose a marriage amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The U.S. Senate is scheduled to debate an amendment beginning June 5, with a possible vote to follow around June 7.
The numbers are similar to other Gallup polls in recent years. An August 2005 poll had 59 percent of American adults opposing "gay marriage," while a May 2004 poll had opposition at 55 percent. Support for the amendment also has been somewhat consistent -- it was at 50 percent in March 2004, 57 percent in March 2005 and 53 percent last April and May."
"After the clamor to legalize same-sex marriage, it turns out that not many homosexuals really want it. Following a bitter battle last year, the Spanish government gave homosexuals the right to marry. Since the law took effect last July 3, until May 31, only 1,275 same-sex marriages took place, reported the Madrid daily newspaper ABC last Saturday.
Comparatively, that would add up to a mere 0.6% of the 209,125 marriages contracted in Spain during 2005. Of the total number of same-sex marriages, 923 were between males and 352 among females.
A recent study by the Virginia-based Institute for Marriage and Public Policy did a roundup of same-sex marriage trends. The study, "Demand for Same-Sex Marriage: Evidence from the United States, Canada and Europe," was published April 26.
So far the highest estimate of the proportion of homosexuals who have used the new laws to marry is in the American state of Massachusetts, with 16.7% '" the knot. But this seems to be an exception. In the Netherlands, where same-sex marriage has been established the longest, the percentage was far lower. "
read more @: Same-Sex Marriage Flounders
"Gary Bauer of the Campaign for Working Families is not concerned about the coalition of religious leaders who are lobbying against the marriage amendment. "I believe they're way out of step with church-going Americans who, every study shows, overwhelmingly support keeping marriage as the union of one man and one woman," he says. Every state that has considered a marriage amendment to its constitution has seen decisive majorities of voters -- as high as 70 and 80 percent -- approve the measure.
And Rob Schenck of the National Clergy Council says he is not surprised to see these groups and other liberal denominations speaking out against defining marriage as it is taught in the Bible. "This is completely predictable for this bunch," says Schenck. "Every time anyone anywhere asserts traditional moral values or traditional biblical positions on anything -- and most especially marriage and human sexuality -- you can predict that this same group will parade out and oppose it."
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