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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Same Sex Marriage Amendment: Will Face Virginia Vote


In November Virginia voters will be deciding a key issue: Should there are should there not be same sex marriage?

This has progressed through the Virginia Assembly by this process as reported by the Washington Times:

"To amend the state constitution, the General Assembly must pass a resolution in two separate years separated by a legislative election with no change in the legislation, then offer it for statewide voter approval in a fall general election. This is the second year that the House and Senate have overwhelmingly passed identical resolutions calling for a constitutional ban on homosexual "marriage."

Now the question is how it will appear on the ballot. Will there be a short summary of the law? Or will the whole amendment be presented?

This decision itself is fomenting much discussion. The answer may ultimately come from Tim Kane. The amendment also comes under fire, because the wording may compromise some contracts between between individuals that are unrelated to marriage.

13 Comments:

At 11:37 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

It is my fervent hope that Va voters will show compassion and enlightenment and pass an amendment allowing same sex marriage. It is the only right thing to do.

Despite Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell's posturing, same sex marriage does not harm family values nor does it put heterosexual marriage at risk. I doubt seriously that will will see oodles of formerly straight people suddenly switching oars in the middle of the stream, and seeking out and marrying gay lovers.

Same sex marriage does only one thing. It solemnizes and legitimizes a union between two people who love each other, irrespective of religious bug-a-boos.

The fear of damage to "the family" is not only illogical (since a newly married couple creates a new family), but it is also irrational.

Gay marriage is no more responsible for the breakdown of "family values" in the US any ore than the Jews were responsible for the breakdown of Germany's status and ability to function in pre-war, pre-Hitler days in the 1930's.

And yes...I do mean to lump people who fear gay marriage into the same category of Hitler, and the KKK and any other fear/ hate mongering group or individuals. While those so campared are busy being offended, I hope they will also think about it and ask themselves why they are offeneded. Is it because they don't like being compared to historial hate and fear mongerers, or is it because at the core of their being, they realize I am right.

 
At 12:58 PM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Jeff,

I can't help but wonder who appointed you master Czar over all of us? I mean, the issue aside, I hope that people will vote the way they feel is appropriate based on their beliefs, not because they don't want to be called names by someone. Wouldn't it be better if you worked towards educating people as to why your beliefs have merit instead of trying to make people feel like they are in league with Hilter, the KKK and the devil? Tactics like that tend to make me dig my feet in in the opposite direction. Why don't you take some time and tell us why this would be a good measure to vote for, why it is the right thing to do. I am more than willing to listen.

 
At 7:32 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

Melissa,

I called no one any names. I merely compared people who base their antagonism to this subject based on fear and/or hatred to those famous or historical individuals/groups that do the same to accomplish their own ends. Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell are very good examples of this. And I am sorry, but if someone follows their lead, then they are just as guilty of this as the leader. And no where did I mention the Devil, or any religions. In fact I purposfully avoided the subject of religion, since there so many with so many varied beliefs.

As you know, I am not gay. Ultimately, this issue does not affect me personally. However, I am not female either, nor am i black, and yet I strongly have supported efforts for equal rights for all people for as long as I can rememember, even back into childhood. I passionately support the equality of all people, irrespective of race, color, creed, religion, sex, or sexual orientation.

By according homesexual indiviuals the same rights and priveledges as heterosexual indiviuals, we show our compassion, enlightenment, and understanding. We do not have to agree with what people are doing to support their right to do it. A prime example of this would be with the 1st amendment. I hate seeing the KKK and skin heads parading down the streets in their jammies and dunce hats spewing hatred, but I fully support their right to do it.

You may not like homosexual behavior, but would you deny a homosexual the right to be with someone they love and care about?

And before anyone comments back that "The Bible tells us thus and such.." Remember, the Bible also tells you not to judge, unless you are perfect and are ready to stand in judgement yourself.

As for presenting compelling evidence in favor of my point of view, let me submit that I have never seen a compelling reason to deny a portion of the population basic human dignity and rights that was not based either in religious beliefs and law, or in superstition and fear. However, religious belief and religious law does not belong in a law of a country governing millions of people, many with widely divergent belief systems. Superstition and fear do not even have a place at all in a civilized society. There are no roving bands of gay marauders at the gates of societies' city, waiting for a chance to break in and rob and pillage and carry off our young. What there is, is a group of out neighbors, feloow citizens, and even family members who simply want the same rights and privaledges as the rest of us enjoy.

Mob rule should not apply in this forum, everyone should have the same rights.

 
At 7:58 PM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Jeff,

When you group people who are against same sex marriage in with people like Hilter and KKK, that is the equivalent of calling people names. The only reason I mentioned the Devil is for 'evil' purposes, not to bring in religion.

I find it interesting that you speak of the bible telling us not to judge, yet you seem to have no problem judging people. Maybe you feel okay with that since you aren't a Christian. But you are very judgmental. You have decided what is the right way for people to think and you have judged the people who don't think that way.

Personally, I believe marriage to be the union between a man and a woman. Not a man and a man a woman and a woman, a man and a baboon, a woman and a goat...you laugh, but a woman a month or so ago married a Dolphin in Britain. There is nothing wrong with having definitions in our society and sticking to them. I have no problem with gay couples being allowed the same rights as married couples (insurance, rights to visit in a hospital, inheritance, etc). But I don't think same sex marriage is needed for this to occur nor do I think it is appropriate.

 
At 10:45 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

Personally I am glad we haven't stuck to some many of the definitions we once had.

To wit:

slav·er·y (slv-r, slvr)
n. pl. slav·er·ies

1. The state of one bound in servitude as the property of a slaveholder or household.
2.
a) The legal practice of owning another, usually inferior, human being.
b). A mode of production in the United States of America in which slaves, (usually Negroes or other inferior races) constitute the principal work force.

I don't care for that one much.

suf·frage sfrj)n.
1.
a) The right or privilege of voting; franchise.
b) The exercise of such a right. (NOTE: This priviledge is not extended to women, Negroes, Chinese and other inappropriate or inferior persons)


Hmmm, not liking that one much either

Chris·ti·an·i·ty (krsch-n-t, krst-)
n.
1. The unlawful Christian religion, founded on the life and teachings of the Jewish prophet Yeshua bin Joseph (also commonly known as Jesus or Kristos) put to death by the State for sedition and treason.
2. Christians as a group; Christendom. The unlawful and sedititous gathering of people identifying themselves with the aforementioned Jesus.

Not a happy one either it would appear.

So really, while progress can sometimes be painful...it is generally a good thing. And I truly believe that treating all of our fellow citizens equally is a good thing and would be signifigant progress.
You asked who made me Czar...well, no one. However, if it is ok for one person to tell another that who he or she loves if inherently a bad thing, then I can tell them they are wrong.

And besides....Czar is of Russian descent, I from a Scottish background, so you can call me Laird. :)

 
At 10:57 PM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Laird Jeff...sounds good;)

BTW, the definition of slavery hasn't changed, nor has suffrage. We don't practice slavery in America (though it is practiced elsewhere in the world) and here in America, who has suffrage has changed, but the definition of suffrage has not changed. I am sure the definition you gave of Christianity still applies in places of the world as is and a Christian is still a follower of Christ, just not considered to be unlawful everywhere.

So back to the definition of marriage...where does it stop? Do we next move onto people and animals? Multiple partners (hey, I for one would like some help with the housework)...this definition has worked a long time. Let's come up with something else for same sex unions, because it doesn't fit the definition of marriage.

My husband and I lived together for four years before we were married. We didn't have a lot of rights (though we weren't thinking of it that way at the time). I agree that there should be a category for all long term partners for all the insurance/inheritance/etc issues.

As always, I enjoy having these conversations with you...keeps my brain limber:)

 
At 11:18 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

Well, actually those defintions have changed somewhat, since they were period specific, the first two being specific to the US.

And I do not see anyone endorsing inter-species activities. In fact it is a felony offense in most states. The difference being that the animal can not communicate its agreement or disagreement to participation in the activity. Now if they were intelligent and could say yea or nay to their own involvement, then I would support their being able to do that as well.

And we have multi-partner marriages now... polygamy. Though IIRC, they are only legal in Utah.

As for non-married long term couples, I think you are referring to civil unions...something that I believe this amendment may even tackle..if I read it correctly. And yes, I support civil unions as well.
However, I still have not found compelling evidence why same-sex marriage is not a marriage, or why it harms any other marriage customs or traditions. I of course and not talking about religious reasons. I realize that there may be an arkload of religious reasons, but I am talking about gov't sanctioned legal marriage.


Brain work out eh? LOL. Brain-ups, cortical curls, stem stands, lobe laps, although that sounds like a variant of oo-mox for a Ferengi.

 
At 11:19 PM, Blogger Lilac Moon said...

I cannot, in ANY way, shape or form, agree that same-sex marriage breaks down the traditional family! I grew up between parents and the most secure years of my childhood were spent with my father and his LONG-TERM, BLACK, GAY PARTNER!!!! I never had to worry about anything when I was with my fathers. We had plenty of food and decent clothes. The bills were always paid. My brother and I had ample opportunity to participate in activities, we went to good schools. The list goes on and on. Isn't that what the "traditional family" is supposed to be?

 
At 8:36 AM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Jeff,

I know you didn't mean to say that only the U.S. endorsed slavery? Slavery is mentioned in the bible, African tribes made slaves of each other during war, Romans had slaves, the list goes on and unfortunately, there is still slavery in the world today. Suffrage I can see being a U.S. term, but the point is not that they were period specific. The point is that the definitions have remained the same. Slavery means the same now as it has always meant.


Again...why can't we come up with a different term that grants the same rights? Marriage is a union between a man and a woman, by definition. Instead of changing the definition, let's come up with new terminology...just like we do for other situations/items that arise (just look at technology for instance). And let the procedure be different as well.

You keep mentioning the bible, which I find interesting as I have yet to have brought the biblical issues into it. Maybe you want me too? Trying to switch the argument to a different ground;)

As to Utah, yes they have a special case allowing polygamy, but that is still a ceremony between a man and a woman. Albeit many women in many ceremonies.

And maybe you forgot that I mentioned the woman who married a dolphin who was from Britain (I think the dolphin may have actually lived in Spain). But she said she loved him...and he seemed very fond of her by all accounts. Interestingly, seems like I read an article a week later where he turned out to be a she:)

 
At 10:16 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

No, I am not saying that the US only was endorsing slavery, You made a mention about societal definitions and sticking with them and I was pointing out that we have had definitions in our past that we have changed when we realized how wring we were. As for specificity, go back and read carefully the language of the definitions....I would say that they are indeed period specific.

And why do we need to come up with a separate, but equal term for same sex marriage. (Have we tried that seperate but equal mess before?) The term marriage fits just find. Thios is not a new situation....there have been gay people as a long as there have been people. It is only in the last 40 yeras of so has our society prgressed to the level of maturity that it can consider same sex marriage. And besides, the idea that it is man/woman only is the basis for my complaint in the first place.

And I have not mentioned the Bible since my first post. I have made statements about how laws should be based on fairness to all and not on religion, but I did not mention the Bible.

And yes, I realize the polygamy laws deal with man/woman. I was just answering your query about multi-partner relationships. You did not specify sex, so neither did I.

And no...I did not forget the dolphin lady...but it is just not relative to this conversation. We are talking about same sex marriage, not inter-species marriage

 
At 10:52 AM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

You are right Jeff, I should have said religion, not the bible. I am not even conversing about any religious aspects, just looking at the definition.

My point with the interspecies marriage, is where does it end...how far do we go in changing the definition of marriage.

As to changing definitions. Slavery means slavery. We didn't decide slavery was wrong and change the word slavery to mean something else. Slavery has the same meaning it has always had. We just have decided it is wrong. So are you saying the definition of marriage is wrong? And you want to change the definition from being between a man and a woman to cover other types of relationships? If so, I ask again, how far do we go?

And again, why not come up with a new term? It is a new situation.

 
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