Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Conflict Between Same-Sex Marriage and Religious Liberty

Back in this post, Limpy99 stated:

"I don't understand how the private lives of homosexuals is such a threat to you and your beliefs."

It isn't the private lives of homosexuals that is a threat to me or my beliefs, it is the legalization of the homosexual agenda (meaning, teaching it in schools) and "gay" marriage that is a threat to me, as well as any other parent out there that does not want such sexual liberties taught to their children because it clearly goes against their moral and religious values. What about my, and other Christians religious liberty? If you think that after "gay" marriage, there will be no problems between the two, think again. We don't even have to imagine the conflicts. They are already happening in Massachusetts.

Later in this post, you will have the opportunity to read excerpts from a link that clearly shows that as a result of "gay" marriage being legalized in Massachusetts, the coming conflict between same-sex marriage and religious liberty is inevitable. Only one side can win, folks. This article tells us why.

Some points to consider from the article:

"Reading through these and the other scholars' papers, I noticed an odd feature. Generally speaking the scholars most opposed to gay marriage were somewhat less likely than others to foresee large conflicts ahead--perhaps because they tended to find it "inconceivable," as Doug Kmiec of Pepperdine law school put it, that "a successful analogy will be drawn in the public mind between irrational, and morally repugnant, racial discrimination and the rational, and at least morally debatable, differentiation of traditional and same-sex marriage." That's a key consideration. For if orientation is like race, then people who oppose gay marriage will be treated under law like bigots who opposed interracial marriage. Sure, we don't arrest people for being racists, but the law does intervene in powerful ways to punish and discourage racial discrimination, not only by government but also by private entities. Doug Laycock, a religious liberty expert at the University of Texas law school, similarly told me we are a "long way" from equating orientation with race in the law."


I sincerely hope that last comment holds true.

Chai Feldblum gets down to the crux of the matter.

"Not because I was caught up in the panic," she laughs. She'd been thinking through the moral implications of nondiscrimination rules in the law, a lonely undertaking for a gay rights advocate. "Gay rights supporters often try to present these laws as purely neutral and having no moral implications. But not all discrimination is bad," Feldblum points out. In employment law, for instance, "we allow discrimination against people who sexually abuse children, and we don't say 'the only question is can they type' even if they can type really quickly."

To get to the point where the law prohibits discrimination, Feldblum says, "there have to be two things: one, a majority of the society believing the characteristic on which the person is being discriminated against is not morally problematic, and, two, enough of a sense of outrage to push past the normal American contract-based approach, where the government doesn't tell you what you can do. There has to be enough outrage to bypass that basic default mode in America. Unlike some of my compatriots in the gay rights movement, I think we advance the cause of gay equality if we make clear there are moral assessments that underlie antidiscrimination laws."

But there was a second reason Feldblum made time for this particular conference. She was raised an Orthodox Jew. She wanted to demonstrate respect for religious people and their concerns, to show that the gay community is not monolithic in this regard.

"It seemed to me the height of disingenuousness, absurdity, and indeed disrespect to tell someone it is okay to 'be' gay, but not necessarily okay to engage in gay sex. What do they think being gay means?" she writes in her Becket paper. "I have the same reaction to courts and legislatures that blithely assume a religious person can easily disengage her religious belief and self-identity from her religious practice and religious behavior. What do they think being religious means?

To Feldblum the emerging conflicts between free exercise of religion and sexual liberty are real: "When we pass a law that says you may not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, we are burdening those who have an alternative moral assessment of gay men and lesbians." Most of the time, the need to protect the dignity of gay people will justify burdening religious belief, she argues. But that does not make it right to pretend these burdens do not exist in the first place, or that the religious people the law is burdening don't matter."


But IMO, she starts going in the wrong direction with these comments:

"You have to stop, think, and justify the burden each time," says Feldblum. She pauses. "Respect doesn't mean that the religious person should prevail in the right to discriminate--it just means demonstrating a respectful awareness of the religious position."


Then, she sides with the "sexual liberty" gay activists here:


Feldblum believes this sincerely and with passion, and clearly (as she reminds me) against the vast majority of opinion of her own community. And yet when push comes to shove, when religious liberty and sexual liberty conflict, she admits, "I'm having a hard time coming up with any case in which religious liberty should win."


Religious liberty, freedom of association, and freedom of speech all should trump "sexual liberty." "Sexual liberty" may be an evolving matter in secular humanist circles, but I don't think that the framers of our Constitution meant for such a concept to trump what is already written in our founding documents!

Here is a link to The Evangelical Outpost blog where I found the "Banned in Boston" article. I think that if more evangelical Christians read that article, they will be awakened from the disingenuious mantra being espoused by the gay lobby and jolted from the slumber they are currently in regarding the morally relativistic thinking that "gay marriage can't hurt them."

We can vividly see that the legalization of "gay" marriage in Massachusetts has already resulted in several dire consequences against religious liberty in that state. It has already cause Catholic Charities to stop their adoption efforts there because their religious freedom of conscience, freedom of association, and freedom to conduct their work according to the Catholic church's teachings has been eliminated from consideration based on the trumped up "rights" afforded to "sexual liberty" activists.

But there is even more to consider!

Our main arguments for saving traditional marriage:


Marriage is between a man and a woman.


"Marriage" should not be whatever the law says that it is. The covenant relationship of marriage predates the law and the Constitution.


"Love" and "companionship" are not sufficient to define marriage. (If this were true, minor children and adults should be able to marry each other.)


If homosexual marriage is legalized, the floodgates will be opened for other groups of people to marry. By the same logic, we would be forced to allow a man to marry three women (polygamy) or a brother and sister to marry each other (incest) or, ostensibly, we'd have to let a man marry his dog (bestiality). Recently in Australia, a man married his T.V.!


Denying same-sex marriage is not "discrimination." A homosexual person has the same right to marry as a heterosexual person, he/she simply has to marry the opposite sex.


The sexual union of a man and a woman is the only way to naturally reproduce children.


Studies show that children need both a mom and a dad.


"Gay marriage" is either anti-woman or anti-man. It embraces the concept that one of the sexes is not needed for raising children.


"Gay marriage" is not about what two people do in the privacy of their own home. It's about the public approval of radically redefining traditional marriage. A public embracing of same-sex marriage affects all of society.


Before society jumps to legalize same-sex marriage, the fact needs to be addressed that, on average, homosexual men die ten years younger than heterosexual men. Perhaps encouraging "gay marriage" is not good policy for health reasons alone.



"Gay marriage" is a social experiment. No civilization in history has ever legalized same-sex marriage.


Our children are the ones who are the "guinea pigs" in this social experiment.


Ultimately, "gay marriage" is simply an attempt by a sub-group of people, identified solely by their sexual conduct, to obtain societal approval of their sexual behaviors.


If we re-define marriage, we will un-define marriage and it will become meaningless.


I could give you links to dozens of articles that would share precisely why redefining marriage would be detrimental to society. There are biblical reasons and secular reasons to not only oppose same-sex marriage in particular, but the affirmation of gay-behavior-indoctrination through public schools, in general.

The experiment of homosexual marriage in the Scandinavian countries proves the fact that marriage, as we now know it, would become more and more irrelevant. The confusion that erupts in the minds of children is a strong factor against it, too.
Want more reasons? It's about dilution, and, we already see the negative results of same-sex marriage in Massachusetts. Parent's rights to raise their own children as they see fit is being destroyed through intimidation and lawsuits by pro-gay activists in the public schools there.

Enraged Gay activists show up and spew their hatred at Christian ministry events (Like Love Won Out) which are held to help those who want to escape homosexual behavior and attraction.

It has been my experience that despite evidence that backs up my reasons (and the majority of Americans, as well) for wanting to keep the several-thousand-years- old definition of marriage as being the union of one man and one woman intact, those who oppose us will not change their minds no matter what. It is a battle between ideologies that are polar opposites, and the excuses used by the other side are just that...excuses being used to destroy an institution that all cultures recognize (at one time or another, at least!) and that was originally instituted by God (as evidenced in the Bible).

Even more evidence that same-sex marriage results in chaos.

Just found another perfect example of how parent's (and students!!) beliefs and rights are being usurped by homosexual activism in public schools!

In Canada, their new leader is attempting to correct the current gay-agenda-machine which has become relentless and is threatening the traditional freedoms of religion and speech in that country.

In conclusion, the legalization of "gay" marriage is most definitely a threat to me and my beliefs, as well as the beliefs of millions of Christians and Orthodox Jews.

With that said, if you are still interested in reading more articles, I will do a search at my message board and give you the links. However, if you think that you would never change your mind on this matter anyway, perhaps I should not waste my time researching and sharing such articles. It's up to you.

Hat Tip: The Evangelical Outpost

11 comments:

limpy99 said...

Well, there's certainly some interesting points to consider in there, but first to dispense with the usual hysterical arguments that gays getting married will lead to people marrying there televisions, sisters, brothers, dogs, or some combination of those groups. Generally I ignore this argument because it's a red herring that distracts from legitimate argument, but just very quickly: Kids can't marry each other due to age of consent laws. Adults can't marry kids becuase of the same. People can't marry animals because animals can't consent. I don't know why Austrailians can marry their TVs, nor do I care. If that bothers you, however, I would suggest avoiding Austrailia. And TV. Borthers can't marry sisters due to the health risks of incestuous relationships, and becuase there are already too many people on "Jerry Springer".

Now, I read the article on the Catholic Charities adoption issue. This is not my specialty in the field of law, but if I recall my classes in Constitutional law, (and I may very well not), they should be able to get an exemption to run their adoptions as they see fit. As long as they do not take funding from the state, I don't see a Constitutional problem with any organization saying that they aren't going to fill adoption requests from people who live contrary to the group's spiritual tenets. Certainly I would disagree with them, but I would also defend their right to act in accordance with their beliefs. In short, if they really wanted to fight it out, I suspect that they would prevail in the end. The question isn't whether the group discriminates, (certainly it does), but whether the state does. If the state isn't funding the group, it isn't taking part in the discrimination.

Is the state discriminating against the Catholic group? Yes. Is this allowable? Again, yes, but under strict conditions that I sort of forget, but it has to do with being narrowly tailored to meeting a legitmate state interest. Certainly the state has a legitimate interest in eliminating discrimination, but does denying a charter to a group seeking to foster adoption (get it?), meet the requirement that the state's action be narrowly tailored? To me the answer is no, because there are other groups who will allow gay couples to adopt, and because in this instance I would argue that the state has a more important interest in ensuring that the greatest number of orphaned/foster children are matched with the greatest number of fit parents.

Even if that means that some of the kids will be matched by a bunch of pig-headed people stuck in medieval times.

Mark said...

Hi Christine!
I will say this...I read your post very quick, so if I repeat something already said, I am sorry. I am glad limpy99 is still considering...:)

Something does NOT have to hurt anyone, to be wrong! period. end of comment.

God Bless you!

Christinewjc said...

Hey Mark,

I know. It was a long post with lots of links! However, if you have not already read Banned in Boston, it's a must read for Christians. The threat against religious liberty does not need to be imagined because it is already happening in Massachusetts!

I agree with your statement that "something doesn't have to hurt someone to be wrong." But I have found that many Christians are apathetic (and is some cases supportive for same-sex marriage!) on this issue. They do not realize the consequences that laws elevating "sexual liberties" (more like licientiousness) against, and above, religious liberty (freedom of religion, association, speech)will inevitably cause them to lose their religious freedoms if the gay activist agenda is taken to it's full fruition. This is why this issue is so divisive. In the end, only one side can win the debate.

The article points out that religious freedoms are often trumped by the homosexual agenda when "gay" marriage becomes law. Just ask the Christian believers in Canada and Massachusetts!!

Limpy,

The article points out that there is no religious exemption allowed in Massachusetts. This is why Christians there want to overturn the "gay" marriage law. The result of that "law by judicial fiat" there is elimination of religious freedoms. As the article also points out, only one side can win in this debate. The gay activists do not want any religious exemptions because then (they probably perceive) anyone can bypass the gains and laws that have already passed. If a religious exemption was allowed, then there wouldn't be so much controversy there, today. Because of no religious exemption, parents are not allowed to have a say when it comes to gay agenda indoctrination in public schools. The teachers think (and often say!) "gay marriage is legal now...the parents can't do anything about it." This is not a democratic-republic type of response. It seems to be more in line with a socialisict, marxist dictatorship, to me.

limpy99 said...

Christine, I want to disagree with your characterization of the Massachusetts gay marriage decision as "law by judicial fiat". The role of the courts in this country is to answer to the Constitutions, first that of the US, then that of whatever state they are in. The US Constitution provides a floor beneath which no state can go when it comes to limiting the rights of their citizens. A state can give more rights; it cannot take any away. A judge doing his or her job cannot be swayed by what even a majority of the people think; they have to respond to the constitution. And ours says "all men are created equal"; there is no language that says "except the queers". Quite frankly, a proper reading of the US Constitution would legalize gay marriage across the country. Hence the right-wing push for an amendment. If the people of MA don't like the judge's interpretation of their state's constitution, they need to get an amendment of their own in. But it's not correct to yell about activist judges. Their role is not to please the majority; it is to interpret the law.

"The gay activists do not want any religious exemptions because then (they probably perceive) anyone can bypass the gains and laws that have already passed" Well, of course they don't. Neither would I if I were in their (no doubt fabulous) shoes. You and other Biblical Christians surely don't want gay exemptions. No one wants an exemption that goes contrary to their interests; that's human nature. My point wasn't that the gays would be happy about such an exemption. My point was that I think if the Catholic adoption group wanted to they could probably take the issue to the federal courts and say their religious freedom was being hindered by Massachusetts refusing them an exemption. While I am not sympathetic to their overall position regarding gay adoption, I do acknowledge their right to it, and I think they would have a strong case.

Possibly with an activist court running contrary to the majority will of Massachusetts;)

Christinewjc said...

New American Heroes: Parents Fight Against A Gay Agenda In America’s Schools.

Christinewjc said...

From what I recall of the Mass. Court ruling, it came down from 3 judges (2 for ssm =same sex marriage, 1 against). One of the judges that voted for it was an obvious partisan whose liberal and pro-gay views were well known.

This was a misguided ruling that created ssm. Advocates of homosexual behavior predicted that many other states would follow suit. That hasn't happened! In fact, almost 3 years later, voters of 20 states have said "no.!" Six more states will be voting on this issue in November.

This is an issue that doesn't just affect homosexual people. It affects the entire country, and as my post points out, it specifically affects religious liberty in a negative way.

The Mass. judges didn't just "interpret the law." They, along with their favorite co-horts, the ACLU and their allies, seek to override or prevent the will of the people and the constitutional process by using activist courts to force same-sex "marriage" on an unwilling country!

Thank God for the Alliance Defense Fund. They are representing legislators, ministries, family organizations, and individual citizens against the demands of the homosexual legal agenda. They have had more than 30 victories across the country!

So you see, Limpy, it isn't just about "pleasing the majority" as you had stated. It includes the proper interpretation of the law which was not done by those activist judges in Massachusetts.

P.S. I think I read that the "gay marriage" issue will be on the Massachusetts state ballot in November. We shall see what happens in that liberal state. They have had to deal with all of the problems that the "gay" marriage ruling has caused for parents in the schools there. I think that they will have more reasons to abolish it because of those negative incidences against parent's rights to raise their children as they see fit without having to succomb to the relentless K-12 homosexual indoctrination in schools.

Christinewjc said...

Here we go again...

This is taking the "harassment" claim way to far!!

'Pro-marriage' sign leads to firing

Christinewjc said...

Hmmm....the following news article appears to be a case of another set-up; eerily similar to the way gays hoodwinked the Supremes to advance their agenda in the Texas sodomy case.

The Garden Guy vs. The Two Sodomy Guys.

Lewis said...

Re the guy with the sign on his truck saying "for marriage" (Pro-marriage is such a silly term for you people to be using. If you were pro-marriage, you'd be all for gay people getting married), I disagree with the firing too, since it would mean that I wouldn't be allowed to have a sign on my car (if I worked there) that said "No to bigotry, let gays get married" sign.

See how that works?

Christinewjc said...

Lewis,

In 1996, then President Clinton signed into law The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that defined marriage, for purposes of federal law, as the union of one man and one woman.

There. That's it. The law has been defined. The word has been clarified for what it has meant for thousands of years! Marriage includes "one man and one woman." That's it. Period.

Homosexuals can have any relationship that they want. But they can't call it marriage. Call it something else.

The matter is already decided. The DOMA does not leave room for interpretation. It was signed into law by one of the "champions" of liberalism. If it is not enough for some activists (like you), then perhaps it is time for a Constitutional amendment to reaffirm the fact.

Twenty states already have had their people vote to protect marriage in their state constitutions. In most cases, over 60% and up to 85% of the people voted to keep marriage defined as the union of one woman and one man! Six more states will vote this Nov. on definition of marriage constitutional amendments.

Are you prepared to claim that all those people who voted to keep the legal definition of marriage as it has been for thousands of years "bigots?"

Looks to me like you are the radical on this issue, Lewis!

Lewis said...

"Are you prepared to claim that all those people who voted to keep the legal definition of marriage as it has been for thousands of years "bigots?""

Yes. ;)