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On "Defense of Marriage": A reply to Quinn


Lamanite

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One of the most succinct and accurate statements I've read on the subject. Thought I would share and open up for discussion.

On "Defense of Marriage"

"...I do not think that the laws of states

should look with either favor or disfavor on "miscegenation,"

monogamy, polygamy, or sexual homogamy (i. e. "same-sex-gamy"). At

the same time, I think the LDS church or any other private, voluntary organization,

has the right to lay down whatever rules and sanctions it

wishes in order to regulate conjugal relations, including marriage, among

its own members. Those who accept such rules and sanctions will behave

accordingly. Those who do not are free to leave the organization or to remain

and accept such penalties or disadvantages as their non-compliance

might bring. Some homosexual persons, indeed, opt to remain as

active members of the church with a commitment to celibacy, which is

doubtless difficult but no more so than the celibacy required for membership

in the voluntary religious orders of some other denominations.

Notice, though, that the issue here is behavior, not thoughts or feelings

and certainly not physical traits like race or gender."

Big UP!

Lamanite

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You're very welcome. It's not very often that I'm in COMPLETE agreement with a single statement regarding this issue. I'm also not surprised that it was a Mauss quote.

I actually think Mauss so skillfully worded his thoughts that it leaves very little room for argument.

Big UP!

Lamanite

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Perhaps the state should also treat freedom of speech the same as oppression of speech. Do we want a state that sits on the fence on fundamental rights? I believe it is a fundamental right for children to be raised by a mother and father. It's also a proven good to have both biological parents raising their own child(ren). Why sit on the fence on a proven good? The state represents the people and the people's values, or at least it does in a republic. Are we not a republic? Do we not, as a people, value what is best for children?

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You're very welcome. It's not very often that I'm in COMPLETE agreement with a single statement regarding this issue. I'm also not surprised that it was a Mauss quote.

I actually think Mauss so skillfully worded his thoughts that it leaves very little room for argument.

Big UP!

Lamanite

Lamanite, I was looking for a quote you had made some time ago on the gay marriage issue (I think it was on your blog) where you had said something to the effect that you weren't convinced that society was going to fall apart if we allowed gays to marry (I agree). I can't quite remember when it was given, but it was well-worded (I'm working on a blog post on the issue) and I was trying to get some comments from fellow Latter-day Saints. Is the quote still around? By the way, thank you for pointing this Mauss quote out. It will be of great use to me.

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One of the most succinct and accurate statements I've read on the subject. Thought I would share and open up for discussion.

On "Defense of Marriage"

Big UP!

Lamanite

Or more difficult than the experience of those who never marry yet remain chaste.

Bernard

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Perhaps the state should also treat freedom of speech the same as oppression of speech.

it is more like a state saying "All speech is protected except speech that is agreeable to tradition".

The state represents the people and the people's values, or at least it does in a republic. Are we not a republic?

a tired and thoughtless statement, unless you support slavery, oppression of woman, extermination orders issued, etc.

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Perhaps the state should also treat freedom of speech the same as oppression of speech.
Of course not. The purpose of the state is to protect individual rights from being infringed upon.
Do we want a state that sits on the fence on fundamental rights?
No.
I believe it is a fundamental right for children to be raised by a mother and father.
You can believe it but it doesn't make it so. If it were a fundamental right, then the state should intervene anytime a child loses a parent for any reason, whether by death, incarceration, or simply because the parent walks out. The state should protect that child's fundamental right by taking it away from its surviving parent and placing it in a two parent heterosexual home.
It's also a proven good to have both biological parents raising their own child(ren).
Is it? Suppose the one or both of the child's biological parents are unfit parents due to mental, psychological, or emotional deficiencies, or due to substance abuse. Suppose one or both of the child's biological parents are incarcerated for criminal activity. Is it a "proven good" for that child to be raised by their biological parents? Suppose the parents are psychologically, physically, and/or sexually abusive, is it still a "proven good" to have them raised by both biological parents? It's not as simple as you would have it be in your idealized fantasy world.
Why sit on the fence on a proven good?
There's no such thing as a "proven good" any more than a "proven opinion" or "proven preference".
The state represents the people and the people's values, or at least it does in a republic. Are we not a republic?
Actually, we're more than a republic, we're a Constitutional Republic which is supposed to protect the rights of individuals from infringement by others, whether individuals or groups, or even the whole rest of society.
Do we not, as a people, value what is best for children?
Hopefully we do. However, being that we are a diverse group of people with different ideals and values pertaining to our children, what you value and think is best for your child is not necessarily what another values and thinks is best for their child(ren). Personally, I don't want someone who doesn't share my religious, spiritual, and philosophical beliefs and ideals teaching my child(ren) beliefs and ideals that run counter to my own. Somehow I suspect you feel the same way towards your own child(ren). As long as members of society are not harming their child(ren), and providing them with nourishing food, shelter, love, and an education that will prepare them to live as autonomous members of society, the state should not interfere. It is certainly NOT the place of the state to decide which religious or spiritual values a child is raised with, and so it has no business regulating what the sexual orientation of their parents are so long as no inappropriate behavior or abuse is occurring.
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it is more like a state saying "All speech is protected except speech that is agreeable to tradition".

It's nothing like that, since I'm only advocating for the state to not adopt the mindless dogma that a gay union=marriage. They can have civil unions or some such thing.

a tired and thoughtless statement, unless you support slavery, oppression of woman, extermination orders issued, etc.

Wrong, because I recognize that we are a Constitutional republic, and fundamental rights are supposed to be immune to public opinion. Keep in mind that having the gov't adopt an obviously false, minority-held dogma is not a right, much less is it a fundamental right.

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You can believe it but it doesn't make it so. If it were a fundamental right, then the state should intervene anytime a child loses a parent for any reason, whether by death, incarceration, or simply because the parent walks out.

Nature or God caused the loss of the parent. The state is not supposed to fight God or nature. If nature or God left a child with one parent, the state has no business in fixing that. Not only do they not have the power to resurrect the deceased parent, they would be fighting nature or God to take a child away from a biological parent. It's up to the remaining parent, relatives, church organizations, etc. to deal with the situation as best as they can, not the state. They would be playing God or the devil, respectively, if they were to resurrect a parent or steal the child away.

...Is it a "proven good" for that child to be raised by their biological parents?

When discussing the law, it should be noted that the law is historically and logically, supposed to apply in a way that suits the general population. It's about rules and not exceptions to rules, in other words. Obviously, if there are rational reasons for a child to be separated from a biological parent, then society has to deal with those rationally as well. At no point did I say, "The state should force lifestyles on people." I only said the state should show favoritism to ideals, which only makes sense.

There's no such thing as a "proven good" any more than a "proven opinion" or "proven preference".

It's about as proven as it can get that biological parents are more motivated to not abuse nor abandon children.

Hopefully we do. However, being that we are a diverse group of people with different ideals and values pertaining to our children, what you value and think is best for your child is not necessarily what another values and thinks is best for their child(ren).

Which is why we vote on things, which is what I'm advocating for.

Personally, I don't want someone who doesn't share my religious, spiritual, and philosophical beliefs and ideals teaching my child(ren) beliefs and ideals that run counter to my own.

Yeah, which is why the state shouldn't adopt an obviously false dogma that a gay union has no relevant differences from a real marriage. So we agree, right?

...the state should not interfere...

I want the state to show favoritism to what makes sense, i.e. reason and justice. Without those, we have no Constitution, really. Since when are we supposed to abandon reason and justice in favor of trendy and irrational political dogmas? Without justice and reason, there is no Constitution, and we'll never figure out how to even define what fundamental rights are.

It is certainly NOT the place of the state to decide which religious or spiritual values a child is raised with, and so it has no business regulating what the sexual orientation of their parents are so long as no inappropriate behavior or abuse is occurring.

This debate has nothing to do with sexual orientation. It's about early childhood development, biology, anthropology, sociology and a whole slew of areas of study through which we arrive at the rational conclusion that the best way to raise children, as a rule, is to give them both biological parents.

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I believe it is a fundamental right for children to be raised by a mother and father.

Do you really?

Then why do you waste your efforts trying to stop a lesbian couple from calling their committed relationship a "marriage," and concentrate instead on creating laws that take their children away and give them to acceptable mixed-gender couples? Prop 8 and similar measures do nothing to prevent single-gender couples (or even single individuals) from having and raising children.

You seem to know what's "best for children." If being raised by two mommies is bad, surely a single mommy is even worse for them. Get going on that legislation, tout de suite! I want to see you and your church backing laws that prohibit divorce and take children away from any couple that is not properly married and gendered. Otherwise you are failing the fundamental rights of these poor children.

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marriage to a person of ones own choosing is a fundamental right, therefore said right is immune to popular to vote.

Under what article of the US Constitution and/or what Amendment of the US Constitution is marriage declared a fundamental right?

Last time I checked marriage was not a fundamental right in this nation, there is various regulations and laws that restrict many people's right to marry. Each state has different regulations pertaining to the health, age, current marital status, length of time since last divorce (if applicable), ect.

A fundamental right is not a conditional privilege granted by the state, a marriage licence is just that a license from the state to be legally joined as a married couple. Just like a drivers licence or a license to a practice law or medicine, it requires certain requirements to be fulfilled to obtain a marriage license. It is a privilege not a right, and being a privilege the State has every right to limit or restrict access to such license by any means it desires that are deemed Constitutional.

Now the root problem here is that the State has unconstitutionally regulated a religious function, I agree that denying someone the right to be recognized as a legal couple based on sexual orientation is immoral. I agree with this 110%, the State should not be denying someone the right to be recognized as a legal couple based on sexual orientation, but the State cannot violate the religious standards of Marriage by allowing Same Sex Marriage unless the wish to erase the First Amendment from the US Constitution.

Allowing a man to marry a man, or a woman to marry a woman is to trample on the rights of millions of Americans who hold the ordinance of marriage as the sacred union of a man and woman in Holy Matrimony. The problem isn't those who wish to be legally recognized as same sex couples, or the religious, the problem is the States when they ignored the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution many many years ago and started regulating a religious ordinance, when the Constitution prohibits the State from interfering in the free exercise of religion.

I support fully the domestic partnership of all same sex couples that seek equal protection under the laws of there local jurisdiction, I will not nor will I ever support Same Sex Marriage.

IMHO, the State should admit it has been unconstitutionally regulating a religious ceremony for hundreds of years, and stop licensing marriage. I have no problem and I feel that the overwhelming majority of the nation has no problem with recognition of same sex partnership, and give it the same legal protections as a married couple. What most are against is the state telling the millions of religious persons in this nation that they are going to be forced to change there beliefs because the State is changing the ordinance of marriage. The State has no legal right to change a religious ordinance, it never had the right and under the First Amendment of the US Constitution any attempt to change marriage is illegal.

So when you find that marriage clause in the Constitution, please let me know cause I have yet to find the clause of the US Constitution guaranteeing anyone the right to marry.

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Under what article of the US Constitution and/or what Amendment of the US Constitution is marriage declared a fundamental right?

Do you really believe we have no fundamental rights that are not specifically granted by the Constitution?

Where does it say you have a right to own property?

Where does it say you have a right to bear children?

Where does it say you have a right to have sex with your spouse?

Where does it say you have a right to privacy?

Don't you consider all of these fundamental? I do, along with the right to legally commit to and live with someone I love, no matter what we choose to call the relationship (quibbling over terminology is just plain silly).

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But here's a clue...

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Key phrase there is retained BY THE PEOPLE, meaning that things considered a right by the MAJORITY of the people are also considered rights. So in this case people would have to vote, and the Federal Government is forced to respect that decision of the PEOPLE. A minority seeking to subject the majority to something the absolutely do not want it not something retained by the people, so you have a epic fail on trying to use the IX Amendment to make same sex marriage a fundamental right.

Same Sex Marriage is not retained by the People as a right, nor is marriage retained by the people as a right as I previously stated all 50 States have requirements that must be reached before one can marry. Twisting the Constitution to fit what you want it to say doesn't make something retained by the people, the people are against Same Sex Marriage not for it.

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Key phrase there is retained BY THE PEOPLE, meaning that things considered a right by the MAJORITY of the people are also considered rights. So in this case people would have to vote, and the Federal Government is forced to respect that decision of the PEOPLE. A minority seeking to subject the majority to something the absolutely do not want it not something retained by the people, so you have a epic fail on trying to use the IX Amendment to make same sex marriage a fundamental right.

Same Sex Marriage is not retained by the People as a right, nor is marriage retained by the people as a right as I previously stated all 50 States have requirements that must be reached before one can marry. Twisting the Constitution to fit what you want it to say doesn't make something retained by the people, the people are against Same Sex Marriage not for it.

Total BS. "Rights" are not subject to popular vote.

Try not to get hung up on the term "marriage." I'm talking about the right of an adult to form a committed personal relationship. You and the state have no right to stop me, no matter my race or gender.

I agree with BoML above that government should get out of the business of sanctioning personal relationships. It's none of their business. Leave "marriage" and "holy matrimony" to the churches, and remove all special treatment for "married" couples from state and federal laws (in taxation, for example).

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So when you find that marriage clause in the Constitution, please let me know cause I have yet to find the clause of the US Constitution guaranteeing anyone the right to marry.

If you are seriously trying to understand the issue, rather than score rhetorical points which highlight your ignorance, I suggest you read the Zablocki ruling. Here is a summary of the ruling:

In an 8-1 decision, the Court held that Wisconsin's statute violated the Equal Protection Clause and reaffirmed that marriage was a fundamental right. In the majority opinion authored by Justice Thurgood Marshall, the Court emphasized marriage as part of the right to privacy found in the Fourteenth Amendment as identified in Griswold v. Connecticut. While the state has an interest in ensuring that child support obligations were fulfilled, this statute only regulated those who wished to be married and did not justify the restriction on the right to marriage as found in Loving v. Virginia.
Last time I checked marriage was not a fundamental right in this nation, there is various regulations and laws that restrict many people's right to marry. Each state has different regulations pertaining to the health, age, current marital status, length of time since last divorce (if applicable), ect.

Your argument is premised on the erroneous assumption that fundamentals mean unalterable. That is simple not true.

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Do you really believe we have no fundamental rights that are not specifically granted by the Constitution?

Yes, all of our fundamental rights are contained in the US Constitution and it's amendments, with far and few excpetions.

Where does it say you have a right to own property?

Fifth Amendment, "nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." If it is unconstitutional to deprive someone of there property without due process that obviously means that someone must have the right to own property in the first place, otherwise this amendment is pointless. Also the eminent domain clause expressly mentions the right to have private property and that it cannot be taken for public use without just compensation (and due cause)

Where does it say you have a right to bear children?

Fifth Amendment, "nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;" The Fifth Amendment also guarantees the right to life (which includes creating life) cannot be taken without due process of the law, which means unless the State gets a court to order they cannot force sterilize you or prohibit you from having children (though the Federal Government has done this illegally before)

Source: http://en.wikipedia....n#United_States

Also I believe that elective abortion is a violation of the Fifth Amendment, since the fetus is not given any due process at all, he or she is simply exterminated without any due process, and the Fifth Amendment makes it unconstitutional to deprive anyone born or unborn of life without due process of law.

Where does it say you have a right to have sex with your spouse?

Fifth Amendment (as long as you are trying to have children), "nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;" Obviously if a couple is trying to create life through sexual relations the State cannot stop them without due process of the law.

Fourth Amendment (as long as you are in the privacy of your home) "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated" Whatever you do in the privacy of your home is between you and God, unless the State has probable cause to search your home or put surveillance on your home, and has a warrant from a judge to do so.

Where does it say you have a right to privacy?

Wow, this one even you should know Fourth Amendment, "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." This requires no further explanation at all, the amendment speaks for itself.

Don't you consider all of these fundamental?

Yes, I consider all the above Constitutional rights (and a Constitutional Right is fundamental) as I have supported with various Amendments from the US Constitution. A right is only fundamental if it is protected under the US Constitution, and as I have shown from your poor examples fundamental rights are covered by the Constitution, anything outside of fundamental rights requires the right to be retained by the people, which requires a majority and if that majority is large enough they can amend the Constitution to make that right fundamental if they choose too. Until they amend the Constitution though it is not fundamental, and even then you still cannot make something immoral into something moral via the democratic process, all you can do it make it fundamental and legal for the time (look at the 18th and 21st amendment for the perfect example of what would eventually happen to any marriage amendment) .

I do, along with the right to legally commit to and live with someone I love, no matter what we choose to call the relationship (quibbling over terminology is just plain silly).

I agree with you 100% you have a right to live with someone you love, but you do not have a right to be married with that individual unless you meet the guidelines set by your local jurisdiction. If your standard was to become the legal standard adulterers could simply move in with there mistress and become legally married before having an affair and the victim of this terrible event the other legal spouse has no legal option to protect him or her self because under the law they have a RIGHT to get married.

All you have done here is presented four poor examples of rights that are Constitutional, but you lacked the understanding of the US Constitution to know that this was so.

Your argument has no support, it's claims are ridiculous, and have the potential to destroy the foundation of family in the United States by legislating away any possible legal ramification for adultery. Marriage is a privilege and a sacred union that is based in religion, the State has no business interfering in marriage and the fact that they have and continue to do so shows how little respect the States and Federal Government has for the US Constitution.

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If you are seriously trying to understand the issue, rather than score rhetorical points which highlight your ignorance, I suggest you read the Zablocki ruling. Here is a summary of the ruling:

A USSC ruling is an opinion of the Court and their "interpretation" of the US Constitution, not the wording of the US Constitution, all that "interpreting" the Constitution crap that the liberal USSC used in the 60's and 70's is not the Constitution. Nor is the Supreme Court given the power to "interpret" the Constitution in the first place, so the ruling is null in void, IMO anyway.

It is not binding either, the current Court can very well decide that the previous ruling was baloney (which it is), now the real reach here is that you are using a dead beat dad to defend Same Sex Marriage. You really have no shame at all I guess, when you are willing to have a dead beat dad be the poster boy of your argument.

The biggest piece of baloney though is thinking that a case over a dead beat dad guarantees Same Sex Marriage!

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Total BS. "Rights" are not subject to popular vote.

Well actually, they very much are, look at the 2nd Amendment, it is currently unconstitutionally restricted in several states by popular vote and legislative vote. The USSC has issued 2 rulings one against D.C. and another against Chicago and still both jurisdictions refuse to obey the law, and respect the fundamental right to bear arms in self defense.

So you are once again wrong and misinformed.

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Try not to get hung up on the term "marriage." I'm talking about the right of an adult to form a committed personal relationship. You and the state have no right to stop me, no matter my race or gender.

I agree with BoML above that government should get out of the business of sanctioning personal relationships. It's none of their business. Leave "marriage" and "holy matrimony" to the churches, and remove all special treatment for "married" couples from state and federal laws (in taxation, for example).

I agree also that a same sex couple enjoys the same protections as a heterosexual married couple, but they DO NOT have the right to be married, marriage is between a man and a woman ONLY.

I also agree (and you would know if you read my previous posts) that I think the US and State Governments is unconstitutionally involved in marriage, that the problem isn't the two parties who are currently in conflict, but the Governments that overstepped there bounds in the first place and regulated a religious ordinance to begin with.

Marriage is not a fundamental right though, nor is it something that the legislative, judicial, or executive branch on the Federal or State Governments have any right to change at all. The First Amendment prohibits government infringement on religious and marriage is a infringement of the states on religion.

They need to completely scrap the current system and do it the right way by recognizingly all domestic partnerships as just that a civil domestic partnership, if churches which to marry people let them marry people the State has no right to marry people though.

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The state is not supposed to fight God or nature. If nature or God left a child with one parent, the state has no business in fixing that.
What is the basis of this notion, or is it simply the most convenient explanation you could invent to support your position?
When discussing the law, it should be noted that the law is historically and logically, supposed to apply in a way that suits the general population. It's about rules and not exceptions to rules, in other words.
Actually, no. The law is supposed to apply in a way that protects individual rights, whether or not it suits the general population. Thus, we have laws that are popular that are found to be unconstitutional because they violate individual rights.
I only said the state should show favoritism to ideals, which only makes sense.
No, it does not make sense. The state has no business showing favoritism. To do so is a violation of its mandate to protect the rights of all individuals with impartiality.
It's about as proven as it can get that biological parents are more motivated to not abuse nor abandon children.
Then "as proven as it can get" is not very well. It has far less to do with DNA and far more to do with bonding and desire. Many biological parents fail to bond with their offspring, and the vast majority of adoptive parents bond with their children.
Which is why we vote on things, which is what I'm advocating for.
We should not be voting on laws which deny individuals the equal protection and treatment under the law, except to vote to uphold such protection and treatment.
Yeah, which is why the state shouldn't adopt an obviously false dogma that a gay union has no relevant differences from a real marriage. So we agree, right?
Obviously wrong. A homosexual union between consenting adults has no relevant differences than a heterosexual union between consenting adults. Both unions should be protected equally under the law. The state should make no preferential distinctions for one above the other.
I want the state to show favoritism to what makes sense, i.e. reason and justice. Without those, we have no Constitution, really. Since when are we supposed to abandon reason and justice in favor of trendy and irrational political dogmas? Without justice and reason, there is no Constitution, and we'll never figure out how to even define what fundamental rights are.
What you imagine to be reason and justice are nothing more than non-rational religious dogma. Your position is fundamentally lacking reason or justice.
This debate has nothing to do with sexual orientation. It's about early childhood development, biology, anthropology, sociology and a whole slew of areas of study through which we arrive at the rational conclusion that the best way to raise children, as a rule, is to give them both biological parents.
Now you're talking out of both sides of your mouth. If it had nothing to do with sexual orientation, you would not be seeking to make laws preferential to the coupling of heterosexuals over homosexuals.
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