imagine that picture of you protesting same-sex marriage 40 years from now: YOU ARE ‘THOSE PEOPLE’

Imagine that picture of you protesting same-sex marriage 40 years from now, with your Bibles and your flags and your signs:

Imagine how stupid you are going to look in 40 years: Mixed Marriage vs. Same-sex marriage.

Imagine how stupid you are going to look in 40 years: Mixed-race marriage vs. Same-sex marriage.

In 2008, I wrote:

“I ask Californians, especially Christians, to look within their hearts and ask themselves whether we want to treat homosexuals today as we treated women in the 1920’s, and blacks in the 1850’s. Will we look back in 40 years’ time in disgust and shake our heads and ask how we ever voted to deny civil rights to groups based upon a personal sexual choice?”

An artist sums up what I wrote in one picture.

If you are campaigning AGAINST same-sex marriage, that’s you. In the picture. That’s you. You ARE that person. You are the person in the picture that we look back on in disgust, shaking our heads, and asking, “How on earth were people EVER that mean? Why did they EVER believe that? How could those people discriminate against others that way? And use the BIBLE to do so?”

YOU ARE “those people.” And in an age of social media, where EVERYTHING is written down, captured, and remembered, it will be that much easier for us to show our children and grandchildren the faces and the names of those people who argued AGAINST the civil rights of others. And our children will look back in disgust at the images of people protesting same-sex marriage the SAME way we look back and shake our heads at the bigots protesting mixed-race marriage 40 years ago, or desegregation before that, or women’s right to vote before that, or slavery before that, and using the Bible to do so!

YOU ARE THOSE PEOPLE!

(HT: Rabbi Gershon Steinberg-Caudill via FB)

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144 Responses

  1. You call me “one of THOSE PEOPLE” because I do not agree with your views and I choose to stand firm in my belief of homosexuality being wrong. Well then, I say………”you are one of THOSE PEOPLE”. You choose to point your finger of false teachings and liberalism at me. So who then, in the interest of love and truth, is correct? Also, If we all adopted your viewpoint, we, as a human race, could eventually cease to exist. Pro-creation can only happen through a man and a woman. Any thing other than that is unnatural. God’s design of our physical anatomy speaks volumes!!!!!!

  2. tamara, who says anything about banning heterosexual relationships??? you’ve created a false dichotomy: the majority of men are going to continue to be attracted to women, and vice versa. all i’m saying is that those who are not attracted to the opposite sex deserve the same civil rights as those of us who are.

    explain this to me: how sill the human race ‘cease to exist’ by allowing same-sex couples to marry? are you assuming that everyone will turn gay, like it’s the plague or an infestation of zombies?
    seriously, explain your comment to me. your faulty argument seems to suggest that a) gay people are zombies, and b) marriage and procreation are the same thing. many heterosexual couples choose not to have (or cannot have) children. should THEY be allowed to be ‘married’?

    i DO agree with you on one thing: the ‘design’ of our physical anatomies DOES speak volumes, which explains some of the oddities about our bodies.

    cheers,

    bc

  3. Tamara, I find your comment to be quite puzzling. On July 4, 1776, our forefathers signed the Declaration of Independence. It is that document that declared our independence from the English monarchy and it is that document that is the cornerstone upon which our country was built. The Declaration of Independence states: “WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” What of what Dr. Cargill writes is a “false teaching”? For that matter, what of what he writes is “liberalism”? Adherence to the principle expressed in our Declaration of Independence should be the most conservative idea expressed. For the first 84 years of our existence, that portion of the Declaration was read to mean that all white men are created equal. For the first 146 years it was read to exclude women. And for the first 186 years it was read to divide people by the color of their skin. Time has taught us that those interpretations were wrong. Since marriage has been licensed by the government since the late 1800’s, how is it in keeping with the principle expressed in our Declaration for our goverment to not license marriage equally for all of its citizens? The simple reality is that it is not.

  4. As the saying goes, “There’s something in the Bible for everyone.”

    Well, indeed. Just look hard enough and you’ll find something you like in the Bible (change versions if you like … it’s OK); you can then “quote from the Bible” ! Opponents will accuse you of “taking that passage out o’ context” but that’s a non-starter, since that’s EXACTLY what preachers of varying versions of Christianity do (and their versions often clash with each other).

    Some folks talk about “the sacredness of marriage” but then … are OK on marriage-adultery-“forgiveness”-remarriage (repeat cycle as often as you want). Makes no sense to me.

    Jesus said (references to statements or acts of Jesus are folkloric, of course … nothing suggests a factual basis for same) nothing about homosexuality or SSM … at least no one has been able to point out any verse where he SPECIFICALLY addresses same. Am I wrong ?

  5. Allowing all couples to obtain government civil partnership licenses has nothing to do with what anyone for any reason thinks about some sexual preferences. I clearly remember when sex was illegal, period. You could obtain a license from the government to allow you to engage in it under certain controlled circumstances and in certain governmentally defined ways, but other than that, it was a criminal activity. It was even a prosecutable felony to perform certain sexual acts even by “married” (read that state licensed) couples in the privacy of their own homes. People went to prison for having sex. In their own bedrooms. With their legally acquired spouses.
    When those laws were finally taken off the books, folks thought it would be the end times. We’d never see the new century.
    oops.

  6. BobCargill,

    Actually you are creating the false dichotomy. How are gay people today the same as black people in the 1960’s? You posting the pictures back to back does not make it so. Today gays have the same rights that straight people do. They don’t have to go to the back of the bus or use a different water fountain. They are allowed to marry a person of the opposite sex just like straight people are. Wanting to marry someone from the same sex is not the same right – it is one that none of us have. It is creating a new “right”. It is not equality, it is preference. Whether you agree with it or not is one thing, but it is a special right, not the same.

    Cd.dedalus – try Romans 1:27 – pretty clear about homosexuality

  7. Regardless of your firm beliefs, Tamara, your grandchildren in 40 years are going to be embarrassed on your behalf, like someone today embarrassed about ancestors who campaigned for racial segregation or white supremacy.

    “God’s design of our physical anatomy speaks volumes!”

    The fact that “God” has, for example, created millions of people who are hermaphrodites or otherwise sexually ambiguous from birth speaks volumes. How do those people fit into your theology?

  8. Randy: Nice try, but your response is … non-responsive.

    Romans was supposedly written by Paul. It certainly wasn’t written by Jesus. Were you … unaware of that ? My point was that no one had yet pointed to something that JESUS said or did re: homosexuality and/or SSM, and your answer demonstrates that this string of non-responses just continues. Oh, well.

    If you have a quote from Jesus on either of these subjects, let me know where I can find it. … Paul, BTW, was NOT God; a lot of people pretend that he speaks for God, but are unable to point to a specific passage where God or Jesus says so. Can YOU supply such a passage ? Thanks, I’ll be waiting for an answer that is responsive to that question..

    Cheers.

  9. RandyJ – Back in the days of miscegenation laws, black and white folks had exactly the same rights too: the right to marry someone of the same color. Neither had the right to marry someone outside their race. Clearly wanting to marry someone of a different race was creating a new “right” -it wasn’t equality, but preference. Whether you agreed with it or not, it was not discriminatory against any race.

    And like the folks who campaigned for those laws, your bigotry is just as pathetic, your special pleading just as transparent, and the fact you can’t recognize the immorality of your views is just as sad. Strikes me that you’re demonstrating how perfect the analogy is.

  10. Who made gay people? What is the Christian view of how gay people came to be?

  11. (Susan, this is an excellent line of questioning. I’ll be curious to see your responses.)

  12. Dr. Cargill, I appreciate so much of what you have written about marriage rights. In a world where word choice is so very important, I was concerned that you wrote, “Will we look back in 40 years’ time in disgust and shake our heads and ask how we ever voted to deny civil rights to groups based upon a personal sexual choice?” You used the word “choice” in that sentence, and that is the linchpin of the anti-gay marriage argument. Sexual orientation MUST be a choice for their argument to have any credibility. If we ask them when they “chose” to be heterosexual, they have no answer. But they insist that gay people “made a choice” and their argument saturates most of the American political and religious psyche. Sexual orientation is NOT a choice, No sane person with common sense would choose to be gay in a hostile homophobic world. We can argue until we are blue in the face as to why people are gay, but I do not believe the “choice” argument is in any way valid, and we must consistently purge that word from our discussions. Thank you.

  13. Jon, I actually agree with you, in part.

    I’ve clarified this elsewhere on multiple occasions, and I’ll cut-and-paste that response here. But you are correct in that the research and data are revealing more and more that much of what we understand about sexual orientation is, in fact, part of our genetic makeup affected by hormones and other chemicals, just like sex and/pr gender itself.

    Here is the clarification:

    Thanx all. To clarify: you can read my blog from yesterday. The data clearly show that there are some genetic elements to gender identity and sexual preference (e.g., see here and here. While one can certainly choose to be gay (or straight) against their physical programming, one sexual preference (like one’s gender) is increasingly being demonstrated to be the result of genes and chemicals (namely hormones).

    I draw comparisons to being thin or always happy (or conversely, fat or depressed): while one could ‘choose’ to be thin or depressed and live a lifestyle that contributes to these traits, there also appear to be genetic factors that allow some people to eat all kinds of food and never gain weight (and we tend to loathe/be envious of these folks), or that cause some people to be depressed no matter him much they ‘choose’ to be happy.

    If my body tells me to avoid lactose or peanuts, I could choose to ignore these bodily (or anaphylactic) signals from my body, but over time, I may listen to my body. If my body tells me I’m attracted to women, I could choose to resist that urge and date men, or not. Then again, the reverse is also true: if my body is telling me that I’m attracted to men, I could choose to resist that urge and date women, or not. So while I could choose to ignore certain bodily signals, the fact that I’m receiving them is the underlying problem. The Bible clearly sees sexual preference as a choice. Then again, the Bible doesn’t reveal much knowledge or understanding about genetics or the Germ Theory of disease. Gen 30:37-39 reveals this, as does the fact that disease was attributed to ‘spirit possession’ and not pathogens or internal biological disorders.

  14. BobC: See Gospel o’ Mark, ch. 5, for an illustration of what you are addressing: a man possessed by an unclean (demonic) spirit.

    Too bad that people believed that sort of thing back then. As per Christian belief Jesus is God (who is omniscient), Jesus knew that the whole “demonic spirit” theory of mental illness was nonsense; it is unclear why in this folk tale Jesus seems to have gone along with that erroneous belief. . . . H m m m m . . . Well, after all, it IS a folk tale, so likely I am being a bit too “harsh” here, no ?

  15. I’ve a novel idea: how about folks pay attention to their own bedrooms and marriages and leave other folk to take care of theirs ? Personally, I’m more concerned Adam pays back the sawbuck I loaned him than if he’s sleeping with Steve. No offense to the kinder hearts, but Christians don’t own marriage.

    Earth would be paradise were homosexuality the worst of our problems.

    J

  16. wow, that’s really a good reason to take a moral stand, or to back down on one: someone someday is going to disagree with me. about as much logic as the real reason why straight people campaign for gay marriage: i know someone and they’re gay, and i like them, so it must be ok. and i want them to like me.
    whatever happened to having courage for convictions–convictions that are from the Bible, no less? and when did that get to be a bad thing on a Christian blog? aren’t the real ‘homophobes’ those people who insist (with no scientific evidence whatsoever) that homosexuals are ‘born that way,’ oh, and by the way, the folks who insist that also then can be very sure that they are not one of ‘them.’

  17. keith, actually, the ‘no scientific evidence whatsoever’ claim has shifted to the ‘choice’ side of the argument, as the science is showing that genetic and chemical makeup influences sexual orientation, just as it influences sex or gender itself.

  18. “whatever happened to having courage for convictions–convictions that are from the Bible, no less?”

    There were plenty of people who stood up for their conviction about biblical slavery. I seem to remember it even came to blows.

    Feel free to stand up all you like. Strength of conviction doesn’t mean you’re any less immoral.

    “aren’t the real ‘homophobes’ those people who insist … that homosexuals are ‘born that way’,”

    No.

  19. The argument that homosexuals are “unnatural” is bewildering to me. Since there is not a manufacturing facility that produces gay people then they must be “natural”. Every ethnic group on earth has a percentage of gay members – even native Americans. Same sex attraction must have benefited humanity somehow for the trait to have been so universally selected.

    The moral stand that I am taking is because I cannot stand injustice. My moral convictions are derived from my ability to empathize. I can’t stand to see suffering – especially when it is so unnecessary. People that are immune to the suffering must not have the ability to empathize. They have to get their moral compass from an outside source because they don’t have it within them.

  20. Agreed. As animals, anything that humans do is by definition, natural. If a monkey hits another monkey, it’s natural. If a lion eats a zebra, it’s natural. If an anteater wipes out an entire colony of ants, it’s natural.
    How is a human killing another human UN-natural? How is one tribe of humans committing genocide against another tribe UN-natural? It is CERTAINLY immoral or unethical based upon our modern sense of ethics (unless, of course, God instructs you to commit genocide (Deut 7:1-2; Deut 20:16-17; Num 31:17-18), then, somehow, it’s not immoral to many people of faith), but as reprehensible as some of these actions may be ethically, they are not UN-natural. In fact, the entire concept of ‘natural law’ assumes that there are some human activities that are unnatural. I’d argue the ability to fly (without assistance of machines) is UN-natural, or the ability to breathe underwater (without the assistance of machines) would be UN-natural, but doing things that other animals do, however ethically reprehensible, is not UN-natural.

    In fact, Christianity (especially Paul in Romans) makes a very compelling argument (at least to Christians) that the Christian faith involves overcoming our natural/carnal/ what is argued to be ‘sinful’ nature with the discipline and teachings and laws of God. Paul makes some ‘from nature’ arguments from God, which are generally only compelling to Christians (as science has since far better explained the natural world than the flat earth, geocentric, dome-covered earth that is portrayed in the Bible).

    I’d certainly argue that there are many activities that humans should NOT do, but these usually involve a victim and crimes, neither of which include homosexuality, which has no victim and is therefore not a crime.

  21. Are bi-sexuals the same as homosexuals and heterosexuals? Can people be truly attracted to both sexes, and should they be forced to choose only one sex for marriage or do they have the civil right to have two spouses?

    What if bi-sexuals marry a man and a lady, but each spouse wants a different second spouse? You can end up with a very long chain of marriages.

    Should bi-sexuality be recognized as legitimate?

    I think polygamy should be legal for people who want to do that. Maybe bi-sexuality could lead to legalized polygamy?

    Actually, in America it is illegal to have 10 wives, but a man can have one wife and nine girlfriends with children by all of them.

    Kenneth Greifer

  22. It’s best to recognize that “the Bible” (whichever translation one likes, based on whichever codex-patching (agenda-driven, involving a lot of guesswork … masquerading as Divine Guidance) one likes, whichever canon one likes, etc.) is … a collection of folk tales, not a collection of facts.

    Draw morality from whatever source you want, but recognize the folkloric (non-factual) character of “the Bible” first and foremost.

  23. God is Good and it is the suffering caused by this bigotry that is the abomination. That is how we know it is not from God.

  24. As luck would have it, two recent polls have found a slight majority of Americans now support either civil unions or gay marriage. Most interesting is the sea change is led by the young. Here’s the links:

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0512/76264.html

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57433493-503544/poll-most-americans-support-same-sex-unions/%5D

    Doubtless there’ll be more outrage from the religious right, for which I uncharitably wish them all the heartburn they can stand; good for the young, I say !

    J

  25. Probably only in USA people can 1) argue in the pluralistic society against homosexuality by means of Bible, 2) argue for homosexuality by means of “philosophical” arguments when actually they know nothing about philosophy.. To 1: in my country where officialy 90% of country are catholics it is hard to imagine that someone in a public discourse will argue against homosexuality (also abortion, euthanasia, in vitro, etc..) by means of Bible. Such a person would be mocked… If you want to introduce a general law at some country (where not all citizens are for example christians), you have to use reason. To 2: if someone of you had studied philosophy, or psychology, or just medicine, would know that you don’t need any Bible to know that homosexual acts are wrong…

  26. had studied philosophy . . . to know that homosexual acts are wrong

    This is a curious point. My ‘philosophy’ says we are a free people to do what we will as long as it does not harm others.

    The 9th Amendment of the US Constitution:

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

    The right to cohabitate with whom one desires is a fundamental human right. Some significant portion of the populace wishes to cohabitate and establish lifelong partnerships with members of their sex.

    I fail to see the harm in this so find no reason to deny these people their rights.

    So much for your philosophy of oppression. Got any more irrational justifications for your bigotry?

  27. If God wants us to have sexual relations for procreative purposes only, why are humans the only animals with concealed ovulation? Why hide fertility? There would be a lot less “sin” if our butts would turn red at the most optimum time for conception.

  28. I fail to see the harm in this BEACUSE? Hm?

  29. I fail to see the harm in this BEACUSE? Hm?

    yes, precisely because “”.

    It’s up to those claiming harm to demonstrate the harm, obviously.

    Knock yourself out.

    FWIW, this same debate can and should also apply to life partnerships with more than 2 people.

    There’s plenty of support for that kind of arrangement in the Old Testament of course, but I do think these do bring harm along too, here in the modern world.

    IMV, Christians have to get past thinking everything the ancient Israelites allegedly did or did not do as normative. That’s demonstrably silly really, just as silly as other nations being governed by their own doctrinaire conservative backwardness.

  30. ‘Same sex attraction must have benefited humanity somehow for the trait to have been so universally selected.’

    Just how many gay people do you really think there are in any given population? universal? populations wouldn’t have grown much if that were the case. it seems a desperate grasp to assert that self-limiting of the population is a supportive reason for same sex marriage. one could use that argument in endorsing abortion. People can tell you they are natural born pedophiles, etc., and you cannot logically dispute that.

    also, as a woman, you really DO know when you’re ovulating, by many physical clues, apart from any point you seem to be making. ironically, husbands seem to know as well. that is likely pheromonal.

    the church should not abandon the Biblical and traditional definitions of sin just because society tells us a sinful act is acceptable. Homosexuality is not the most rampant nor the worst sexual sin out there–more insidious ones like porn, adultery, premarital sex, incest, etc.–do a great deal of harm in our own body and bodies. But they are all sin, and they should not be acceptable to God’s people even if the world tells us so. There is nothing new under the sun and the early church dealt with some of the same issues. The church does need to exhibit Jesus’ love, not pound the world with judgment, but also quietly say sin no more.

  31. Rhonda said:

    Homosexuality is not the most rampant nor the worst sexual sin out there–more insidious ones like porn, adultery, premarital sex, incest, etc.

    and yet, I don’t see campaigns to ban those involved in porn, those who have committed adultery, those who have experienced premarital sex, etc., from getting married! Only homosexuals are prohibited from getting married, while what you consider to be far worse offenders can still marry.

    Why are gay individuals singled out for legislative discrimination, when the others can still get married?

  32. The children of a mother with a gay brother would have a better chance of survival in a primitive culture than children with just a mother. The brother would have a kinship relationship with his sister’s children. These children would have more adults providing and caring for them. It is not the amount of children that are born but the number that live to adulthood and therefore reproduce. These are the children that carry the inheritance of the gene pool. It appears that the lucky ones had a gay uncle.

  33. BTW, I have no idea when I am ovulating and neither does my husband.

  34. rhonda:

    “The world” does not speak with one voice. Some Christians like to think that they are the only ones who know *The Truth* and that *the world* is in the thrall of The Evil One working against God’s (“Saved”) People, that life on earth is some sort of centuries-long melodramatic morality play, etc. While there is nothing wrong with this type of magical thinking, it is important to recognize this narcissistic, therapeutic approach to life for what it is and not to be upset when others decline to accord it credibility.

    In fact, “the world” speaks with a large number of voices, some of which are differing versions of “true” Christianity (at war with each other).

  35. susan, you’re absolutely correct, but you’re talking evolutionary and sociobiology and kin selection to a bunch of folks who still believe in a literal flood, adam and eve, and a six-day creation. i’d love to see a survey comparing belief in literal biblical teachings (adam and eve, worldwide flood, six-day creation) and opposition to same-sex marriage. i’d expect a high correlation.

  36. Dr. Cargill, I understand that this topic is important to you, but by allowing one person -namely cd.dedalus– to post ad nauseum anti-Christian posts is damaging any and all of your initial (sound) points. You can obviously control which posts are published and which are not, so please begin exercising this control so that the level of discourse returns to a respectful debate for all. Thank you.

  37. @Dr. Bob: Regarding your comments about correlation between basic “People of the Book” beliefs and opposition to gay marriage, you certainly would see a correlation. The great majority of believing Muslims, Jews and Christians (i.e., those who believe in the three hallmarks you have established above) would be against gay marriage. In fact, most Muslims would say that homosexuality should be punished with death, a sentiment also expressed explicitly in the Jewish Torah. Christians usually ignore this and instead go with Paul’s teachings in Romans (already discussed ad nauseum above).

    Regarding your “bunch of folks” statement, it is a “bunch of folks” indeed. According to statistics found on Wikipedia, there are 1.5 billion Muslims worldwide and 2.2 billion Christians. Jewish people are, as usual, a smaller minority. Now, how many of these billions of people actually believe in the three hallmarks you established would be up to debate, but saying a billion total from each of the three groups would be safe, I would think.

  38. michaelallenscott, you are welcome to post as much as you’d like. just refrain from making slurs and using profanity like some others have done. if you’d like to weigh into the debate with some rationale for why gay americans should be denied rights and opportunities enjoyed by others, please feel free.
    cheers, bc

  39. Dr. Cargill,

    What is your opinion on bisexuals? Are they born that way or are they choosing to be that way? Should they be allowed to marry one person of each sex or what? Do they have any civil right to express their sexual preferences by marrying both sexes?

    Kenneth Greifer

  40. michaelallenscott,

    i’m willing to debate the same amount who thought the earth was flat, that slavery was a good thing, or that illness was caused by evil spirits.

    a simple (or even overwhelming) majority defines neither truth, justice, nor righteousness. large masses of people have believed in some horrible things in the past.

    btw, the specific name for your logical fallacy is argumentum ad populum, or an appeal to the people.

    cheers, -bc

  41. kenneth,

    a) ‘my opinion on bisexuals?’ they may be born that way, may have developed that way, or may have chosen that lifestyle. whichever they are, they should be allowed to be who they are or want to be.

    b) as for your question of marriage, in this country, they should be allowed to marry whoever they want – male or female. this debate is not about polygamy. we can have that debate if we want to, but despite it being a biblical form of marriage ordained by god (apparently, given the number of people in jesus’ lineage who had multiple wives), i oppose it on the grounds that polygamy leads to the suppression of women’s rights. but if you’d like to have that debate, you can advocate for it and i’ll advocate against it and we can discuss it.

    c) sure, a bisexual individual, should he or she choose to marry, should be permitted to marry a male or a female. if you’re wanting to explore a polyamorous situation, see b) above.

    cheers, bc

  42. I would dispute Michalallenscotts tally of people that accept the 3 hallmarks of biblical myths. He may be right about Muslims but my guess is that very few educated Christians and fewer Jews. The correlation I would draw is between those that subordinate women to those that demonize gay people.

  43. Dr. C – I concur. I remember the days of segregation and bans on interracial marriage. I remember the speeches, the sermons, the discussions, the books, the pamphlets. Then a strange thing happened. When the courts overturned those laws, the speeches, the sermons, the discussions, the books and the pamphlets disappeared.

    The last time I remember anyone advocating for racial discrimination within my hearing range has been at least thirty five years ago. Amazingly, I hear no one claim that they supported those ideas in the past. Nor do I hear anyone say their parent or grandparents did. And so it will be with LGBT rights issues, including gay marriage.

    Regardless of how we, as followers of Jesus, personally feel about these issues, Jesus calls us to love our neighbors. He adds no qualifiers. We don’t get to pick and choose. Some of my neighbors have same really strange ideas, and some of them self-identify as Christians, but Jesus says to love them. If I decide I think marriage should only be with someone of the opposite gender, then obviously I should not marry someone of the same gender. But what you do is your business, not mine.

    All the time, energy and money being expended on this issue absolutely delights those who are profiting from it. The focus on this issue also shifts the focus from doing the things that Jesus DID tell us to do – love our neighbors, care for the poor, comfort the broken-hearted and so on. It’s so much easier to get online and rant than it is to spend the morning with the homeless, loving on them.

    Keep it up, Dr C. Don’t let your detractors stop you.

  44. agreed susan. while fundamentalists of all 3 religions have a history of subordinating women and demonizing gays, moderates and progressives (call them liberals if you want) in all 3 traditions do not.
    how one characterizes christians (and jews and muslims) says a lot about the company one keeps, and one’s own religious tradition.

    bc

  45. We have lost our souls. Everything is Ok now. Character is considered obsolete and corny. Liberal indoctrination of our kids is almost complete except for a few stubborn cases that were victims of good parenting. One more indoctrinated generation and we can become a sh!t-hole like Greece, France or Italy. I’m sure glad I won’t be here to see it !!!

  46. ciao and buon viaggio!

  47. Maybe one day when tickets are cheap.

  48. No doubt about it, Greece, France, Italy, and Spain too are down the drain because of gay marriage. Now that’s cleared up we can begin regaining our souls and character. I suggest repealing universal suffrage; after all, it was a mere dozen or so years from the time women got the vote to WWII ! ( silly correlations are always so much fun (smirks))

    J

  49. MichaelAllenScoot:

    If you disagree with my posts, why not just respond to them instead of complaining about them appearing here ?

    It wouldn’t occur to me to complain about YOUR posts to Dr. C. But I guess we take two different approaches to people with whom we may disagree.

    BTW, the earth revolves around the sun, and not vice versa, no matter what Joshua, ch. 10, suggests. And gravity is only a theory (yes, that is true) same as evolution, nuclear fission, etc. And there IS no such thing as “Intelligent Falling”:

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/evangelical-scientists-refute-gravity-with-new-int,1778/

  50. Am I to understand that you have fun making silly correlations? Next time, try more reading and less smirking….or just remain clueless and enjoy yourself.

  51. OK, Colt, I’ll take your previous comments seriously:

    You said: “We have lost our souls.”
    I disagree. I think we are beginning to rid ourselves of hatred and discrimination of individuals with sexual orientations different than our own. This does not equate to a forfeiture of our souls.

    You said: “Everything is Ok now.”
    I disagree. This is a gross generalization and straw person argument. Murder is not OK, therefore your statement is false.

    You said: “Character is considered obsolete and corny.”
    I disagree. This is a gross generalization. I consider character one of the most important aspects of one’s makeup as a person. I consider bigotry and discrimination against homosexual individuals to diminish one’s character.

    You said: “Liberal indoctrination of our kids is almost complete except for a few stubborn cases that were victims of good parenting.”
    If you ‘liberal indoctrination’ you mean abolition, women’s suffrage, the civil rights movement, and the elimination of prohibitions against interracial marriage, then yes, America has progresses and become more civilized. I consider those who teach their kids to discriminate against any of the above and homosexuals to be examples of poor parenting, not good parenting.

    You said: “One more indoctrinated generation and we can become a sh!t-hole like Greece, France or Italy.”
    I do not share your characterization of Greece, France, and Italy. Having traveled to two of these three countries, I found their citizens to be quite nice, their cultural heritage to be outstanding, and their restaurants to be among the best in the world. I’m not sure how you draw a line between same-sex marriage and the state of one’s economy, but I do not share your ‘silly correlation.’

    You said: “I’m sure glad I won’t be here to see it !!!”
    Finally, we agree on something.

    As you can see, your comments contributed nothing to the discussion. You simply ranted with a number of gross generalizations. And as you can also see, it was far simpler to say, “ciao and buon viaggio!”

    Cheers, bc

  52. Thanks for reading what I wrote….I think? Women’s suffrage, the civil rights movement, interracial marriage have nothing to do with what I wrote. The negative effects of Liberal Indoctrination may be over your head but you have only to look at the generation born after 1980 to digest this. If you choose to look at this as progress, you are a “progressive” or “Liberal”…bingo. At one time, a man’s word meant something, as did Patriotism, faith in God, hard work and honesty. wooops ; I shouldn’t have mentioned “faith in God” I might offend someone.

    I really don’t care what two adults do behind closed doors but don’t parade in the streets teach my kids that “Heather has two mommies.” It didn’t happen that way and you know it. Call it a Civil Union; not a marriage. A marriage is between a man and a woman. Airplanes fly, politicians don’t tell the truth and guns shoot bullets. Uh-oh more over generalizations. You people would be entertaining if you weren’t such a threat to the free world.

    You speak of murder and I’m thinking you are more concerned about the convict on death row than the unborn baby…hmm?

  53. Well yes, I do enjoy making silly correlations; unfortunately, they’re usually lost on those that most need to consider them.

    Curiously, in defense of a free world you seem to find it reasonable to give orders, and on someone elses blog at that. I have to wonder who’s the threat to the free world ?

    Quote: ” “Heather has two mommies.” It didn’t happen that way and you know it. ”

    What on earth are you talking about ?

    Doc Bob, I have to admire your patience.

    Regards
    J

  54. If homophobia is akin to misogynism then what is the evolutionary purpose of the denigration of women? If heterosexual men are prejudiced against homosexual men because of their feminine attributes, what is that about? Why is the feminine the cause of all the sin in the world? Why do we deserve to have painful childbirth? Why is Babylon a whore and not a dickhead? What is wrong with people born after 1980?

  55. Colt: The concept of “faith in God” covers a lot of ground, since there are so many versions of same … various versions OF a Christian version of God, OF a Jewish version of God, OF an Islamic version of God, OF a Hindu version of God(s!), and so on. You of course acknowledge that there are there various (hundreds, thousands) versions of the concept of God . . . and each fervent believer thinks that he/she has the ONLY “true” version of same.

    I am tolerant of ALL versions of God and the religions that push them, although I criticize them all. “Tolerance” is not the same as “endorsement” although a lot of Christians I run into (and I expect believers in other religions, too) have been indoctrinated into this erroneous belief (and many others); how sad. NO religion has any sort of “right to be respected” although everyone does have the right to have his/her right to believe and propagate this or that view to be respected, along with the right to have respected his/her right to defend “green” as a much better color than “orange” or butter-brickle ice cream as a much better flavor of ice cream than is rocky road, etc.

  56. […] document.getElementById("fb-root").appendChild(e); }()); Swiped from Robert Cargill.I grew up in North Carolina, the state currently at the center of this argument. My problem with […]

  57. All I meant to indicate in my post above regarding numbers of people worldwide who would not support gay marriage, was that it is a very large number of people worldwide. I was simply attempting to point out that this is not another “The United States is so primitive” issue, IMHO.

    Tempers are obviously running a bit hot about this issue, so I now that I have (hopefully!) clarified what my intentions were I will simply step away.

  58. michaelallenscott,

    no, you made a logical fallacy – an error in logic, and attempted to use it as justification for denying certain people the right to get married.
    and tempers are not ‘running a bit hot’ around this issue, at least not here. but i certainly don’t blame you for wanting to step away…

  59. […] Source Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  60. “The negative effects of Liberal Indoctrination may be over your head”

    A thought-terminating cliché is a commonly used phrase, sometimes passing as folk wisdom, used to quell cognitive dissonance. Though the phrase in and of itself may be valid in certain contexts, its application as a means of dismissing dissention or justifying fallacious logic is what makes it thought-terminating. Thought-terminating clichés are sometimes used during political discourse to enhance appeal or to shut down debate. In this setting, their usage can usually be classified as a logical fallacy.

  61. “Thought-terminating” ?? Wow There’s two dollar term !!

    Thanks for reading what I had to say.

  62. bob cargill, if you want to legislate against other sexual sins, go right ahead, i won’t argue with you. many of them used to be on the books. i don’t see that as the way you seriously want to proceed, except i know you don’t like polygamy because…well, because you don’t like it. there are differences, however; prostitutes and those who frequent them can repent in an instant and never engage in that sin again; gay marriage legitimizes the sin, and it becomes a structural sin. c’mon, your real issue is that you don’t see it as sin, you want it endorsed. at least be honest about it, you will never agree with anyone who thinks it is sin, you will just shift your arguments.
    susan burns, you can find plenty of information about how to know you’re ovulating online. this isn’t the forum for discussing mucuous production or soft cervixes. but your point is illogical, anyway. if God had restricted sex only for procreation he would simply tell us. he did tell us that about homosexual sex, but people don’t want to listen. is there some reason that if the woman’s brother in your example was heterosexual, he wouldn’t raise her children? people do generally want to raise children that are their own offspring, but there we get into nature telling us that heterosexual union was the plan. civil unions satisfy all the things gay people say they want from marriage, save one: they want us all to agree with them that it’s just love. so why not legally support prostitution, pedophilia, incest, and on and on?

  63. Rhonda – First off, Christians don’t own marriage. It’s one thing to approve or disapprove of anyone elses marriage; gay or straight, it’s quite another to legislate your religious beliefs as law. The same applies to others who would legislate their religious beliefs in opposition to yours. That’s what religious freedom is.

    Second, I doubt many gays insist you agree it’s love, nor is love a legal requirement for marriage. What they want is the freedom to marry as they see fit. Further, since presumably we’re talking about consenting adults, it makes little sense to invoke pedophilia etc.

    Lastly, nature has no such plan.

    Jeff

  64. I am sick and tired of the pedophile to homosexual comparison. Rhonda, if you can’t see the difference between the two then there really is no point in this discussion. Good grief! Does the difference really need to be explained? Rhonda, when children are sexually assaulted, they carry the scars for the rest of their lives. They may need years of therapy to overcome the trauma. How can you compare the assault of an innocent victim to the mutual attraction of a same-sex relationship? Those of us that do our own thinking cannot understand this argument.

  65. If you support gay marriage because you feel their civil rights are being violated, then you must also support the legalization of marijuana. Also, you should be mortified that a 20 year old can’t drink. It makes no sense to say Robert can marry his boyfriend at age 18, but he can’t celebrate it with a glass of champagne. Why is gay marriage the only civil right out there being violated? Are gays special that their civil rights are more important than the 420 friendly folks?

    If it makes you happy…it can’t be that bad…right?

    Signed,
    Ron Paul

  66. Jordan,

    1) You’re logic is flawed. Advocacy for a particular issue does not dictate mandated action (and apparently specific positions) on all other issues.
    2) I’m all for having a conversation about the alignment of the drinking age and the draft age (you can die for your country but can’t have a beer) and either legalizing pot or banning smoking (if smoking is bad for you, then it’s all bad for you).

    We can talk about potential victims/problems of lowering the drinking age (less responsible people drinking) and pot smoking (see drinking age comment), but I’m still having trouble finding the victim in allowing two consensual adults get married. Where is that victim?

    Cheers,

    bc

  67. Jordan: You mix Straw Man Arguments and marijuana . . . which, IMO, can never be a good thing.

  68. Doc Bob: I am MORTIFIED you have the TEMERITY to ask where the victims are! Have you no compassion for the MILLIONS of marriages RUINED because Adam and Steve aren’t sleeping with Martha and Eve ???

    J

  69. I have been told I ask the hard questions…

  70. Yes Doc, you do, which is why I’m on your mailing list.

    Sok, here’s a tough one: should the churches objecting to paying for health insurance that provides birth control be forced to pay it ?

    When the topic first hit the news I was inclined to say no, they should be allowed an exemption. I’ve recently changed my view. I’ve concluded either the health plan is repealed or all pay regardless their objections.

    J

  71. […] that it is not only allowable but important that our views evolve on subjects like this one.Bob Cargill made this image and shared some reflections on it:Jay Michaelson discussed traditional marriage in its various permutations.Eric Reitan emphasized […]

  72. More great timing; 57% of Maryland voters now favor passage of new law allowing gays to marry:

    http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/2012/05/maryland-polling-memo.html

  73. I think those who oppose birth control want to punish people for having sex with children. We’re waaay past ‘sex only for procreation’, and yet there are still those who oppose its use. It’s time for birth control to be adopted as an option by the Catholic church, and for employers to cover it. If some church (or some religious university) wants to ban it, OK, but don’t ever take a dime of government money, not for tuition, not for expenses, nada.

    If a church doesn’t want to provide health insurance to its employees, ok. Good luck hiring anyone. However, if they want federal money to fund their school, or adoption agency, and they must provide healthcare, then the employee should choose what coverage they want, and what services or medications they use.

    If you take the government’s money, you must play by the govt’s rules.

    That said, let’s stay on topic. I don’t want these comments to get off the central point: same sex marriage.

  74. Let’s remember for those who do not know that the 1959′ s protestors against race mixing were the Democratic supporter of the Democratic governor Faubus…

  75. OK, but what difference does that make? Racism isn’t limited to Republicans, then or now.

  76. Dr. Cargill,

    I agree that I may be guilty of using a red herring or making a false generalization, but just as you see the irony of the black community not supporting same-sex marriage, I see the hypocrisies of arguing for one groups civil rights, but not another’s.

    Jordan

  77. jordan, there are lots of other changes i’d like to see, but this post is about same sex marriage.

  78. Doc Bob – appreciate the response, and point taken re staying on topic.

    Sok, on a tangent, but still on topic, I will claim much of what passes for Christian theology about gays is at heart a racist mindset. The logic is that on biblical grounds, xenophobia is redirected from overt racism to ‘anti-gayism’.

    J

  79. Jeff:

    Good point. He Democratic Party was the “only” one of any significance in the South during that era. In some states the Republican Party was slightly more moderate and in some states it was the mirror image of the Democratic Party re: the race issue. During that era the Republican Party was almost nonexistent in the South.

    At NO time during that era was the Republican Party in any way “progressive”. .. or in any other era, for that matter. Some Republicans pretend otherwise but they have to ignore history to make that claim.

  80. I think it’s the (astonishingly cross-belief-consistent) hyperbole used by religious people that turns me off discussion about any of these matters.

    Well, that and the astounding false dichotomies, incredibly selective hermeneutics, argument from ignorance, and black-and-white homophobism, anti-intellectualism, and anti-liberalism thinly camouflaged by religious paraphrasing. I just wish I could argue as clearly as folks here refuting those assertions without losing my cool.

    Mind you, I think it’s a scream that so many of the “arguments” posed by THOSE PEOPLE are taken from biblical books that have been irrefutably shown (by conservative christian scholars, no less) to have been forged centuries after the events in the gospels!

    So when a christian says anything about any personal relationship between any nominated victims (wife, homosexual, child, baby), they tend to rely on the words in a book written by people we just don’t know, redacted over centuries by other people we don’t know, collated by conservative misogynistic patriarchs with no critical thinking skills, and translated incorrectly by more misogynistic men. (Hmm, there’s a pattern emerging here…)

  81. Yikes … I just caught an error in my own post. I should have said, “or in any era during the 20th century, for that matter.” Sorry about that. Obviously, during the post-Civil War era it was the Republican Party that pushed for the abolition of slavery, etc. … beng anti-slavery might prove to be very divisive for the current Republican Party, given its announced goal of being pro-capitalism and slaves being an excellent example from history of what many considered to be “capital goods” (a form of private property). . . . without an explicit, “nanny-state” constitutional amendment abolishing slavery, NOTHING would prevent anyone from being enslaved.

    Sorry .. this would appear to be a bit off-topic, but Jeff brought up parisan political considerations, and I was simply responding to his comment.

  82. Uhhh, I didn’t bring up partisan politics; though I do have several gripes with the religious right. One is their opposition to gay rights. I don’t care all that much about their religious beliefs, I care about them wanting to legislate their beliefs into law.

    J

  83. This is has so much wrong in it that there is not enough room here to address it all.
    What is REALLY stupid is calling people stupid for defending something that promotes healthy relationships, family, righteousness, holiness, and most of all an order that comes from God. (We know this from the Bible). What is REALLY stupid is defending a lifestyle that promotes a false happiness, a counterfeit marriage and family, illegitimacy (if children and sperm babies are brought into the picture), whoredom, unfruitfulness, and a broken and enslaved people. (It isn’t even taken into account that the majority of these individuals were ABUSED in some form into the state that they are in today, but what do many of our bandwagon citizens say?: ‘Stay there,’ ‘That is who you are,’ ‘You were born this way,’ ‘It’s okay to be this way,’ etc. I know this for a FACT. This is not freedom: It is an abuse of freedom. It is a perversion of our free will.
    We (are to) learn what and what not to do etc. as children to not grow into adulthood making such decisions; this is the picture of a people (and there are also heterosexuals) who are simply not mature enough for real marriage– biblical marriage, or a marriage that is in the will of God.

    I assume here that marriage is only being placed in the social realm and not spiritual. Why would God ordain something that His Word clearly states He is against? Why would God be for something that His Word clearly states will destroy the spirit, soul and body of a person? We can make all of the “unions” we can; that does not mean that God is for these unions. I also assume that there is NO CARE given to the spiritual aspect of marriage despite being that it is most crucial, it is nevertheless being trashed over here.

    The picture is furthermore offensive– coupled with the usage of the phrase “those people.” How in the world is it okay for one group– that is, those who are PRO same-sex marriage– to be offensive to others (namely, Christians), but when a Christian takes a stand THEY are MORE THAN offensive?

    This is not an issue of equality (as with the matter of skin color which does not denote an associated mental disposition, but rather a physical attribute) because they already have the “right” to marry as anyone else. They just choose not to do so in that manner, or the manner in which the Creator intended. Nor is this really an issue of rights because what is shamefully being propagandized here is that the government gives us rights when it does NOT. Rights are God-given, which the US Constitution even points out, so this issue goes way beyond what is being argued specifically. The Constitution was one of the docs put in place to protect those God-given rights, which it ALSO states. Yes, we have a right to property (which it states), which includes our bodies, but we also have a responsibility that comes with our property and God-given rights.

    What this issue has everything to do with is PRIVILEGE. You can hear it all in the arguments: ‘we have a better position,’ ‘the rest of civilization is 40 years behind,’ ‘the rest of civilization has not (yet) fully evolved [the ‘yet’ being fully loaded, think Hitler and tyranny],’ ‘those who oppose are stupid,’ etc.
    Most of all, this is an issue of privilege because what is really being sought after are SPECIAL rights. I saw a lot in the above comments about not wanting the “religious right” to legislate THEIR beliefs, but that is EXACTLY what the “religious LEFT are doing! LoL! EVERYONE has beliefs!

  84. I shake my head…

  85. Crystal: If you choose to believe that the version of “the Bible” you like is “the Word of God” … you are free to do so. Ditto for devotees of other belief-systems (Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, et. al.). This is a lifestyle choice.

    Fair is fair, after all. I’m sure you agree . . . right ?

    As long as certain Christians drop their demands for SPECIAL RIGHTS (including the right to shove their beliefs down our throats, to NOT pay taxes, to special consideration in zoning applications [churches are sometimes accorded special priority when they want to build yet more edifices and graven images], etc.), I certainly defend your right to propagate what you perceive as “the truth”. All the rest of us demand is that YOU recognize that WE have the same rights as YOU do, and that no one has SPECIAL rights (given by this or that version of “God” or whatever) . . . thank you.

  86. Lemme see if I have this right: the religious left have their own beliefs, therefore it’s not discrimination if I do it in the name of God.

    That about sum it up ?

  87. jeff, not even close…

  88. Jeff: I had no idea that “the religious left” had a uniform set of beliefs” … or is that what you are saying ? If that is your contention, you are wrong (unless you watch Faux News or listen to certain religious leaders).

    “The Christian Right” DOES have a core set of beliefs but has some differences within it, still (e.g., whether people can, today, still speak in tongues or handle snakes). “The RELIGIOUS Right” would obviously include certain “fundamentalist” Christians, Jews, and Muslims … and there are core emotional deficits that they all share, of course. The Christian Left is a bit fragmented, on the other hand !

    And please remember that EVERYone gets to have his/her own conception of “God” and is “entitled” to do this or that (well, verbally … as long as it doesn’t incite to violence, and such) … “in God’s name”.

  89. The wonderful thing about this country Jeff, is that everyone is free to practice whatever religious beliefs they choose to practice. But because we do not live in a Theocracy our government is not permitted to practice ANY religious beliefs. Since the government licenses all marriages, the government cannot use religious beliefs to deny a particular segment of society the right to marry. Read the Book of Leviticus and besides using this book of the bible to forbid homosexual marriages, what other “forbiddens” should our government legislate against. Should adultery be legislated to be a capital offense? It is treated as such in the bible. How about a woman not being a virgin when she is married? Should our government legislate that she be put to death? The original point to Dr.Cargill’s post was that there are so many things in the bible that our civilization has moved away from, why do we stand on the bible when it comes to homosexual marriage. It is simply time to give this up as we have given way to many other biblical things that are supported (slavery) or forbidden.

  90. Oh my, I see I’ve really flubbed this one.

    My intent, CD, was lampooning Crystal. Apologies to all for the botched job.

    BobG– essentially, you’ve restated my arguments to this thread since its inception. Btw, I’ve read a bible, cover to cover, too. Though on reflection, I’m doubtful “read” is the operative word re Lev; “gazed at” would be more accurate.

    The immortal Heinlein has one of his characters state, best I recall the quote: the State is secular, and the people, bless all our black flabby little hearts, can believe as we will.

    J

  91. The equation of homosex as a civil right and race discrimination is a false one.

  92. no explanation? just fact?

  93. Gay people are murdered, beaten and raped simply because they are gay. Black people were murdered beaten and raped simply because of their race. It sounds exactly the same to me.

  94. Alice:

    The equation of “homosex” as a civil right and race discrimination IS a false one:

    that is . . . homosexuals have civil rights (to marry, etc.), but racial discrimination is NOT a civil right.

    Thanks for the comment !

    A different concept: the equation of civil rights based on sexual orientation and civil rights based on race IS NOT a “false equation”. Conservatives (religious and non-religious) try to make a distinction between them, but there is no factual basis for such a claim … maybe there is a RELIGIOUS basis for such a claim, but religious beliefs are entirely fabricated (and most are based in folklore-masquerading-as-history … weird, huh ?)

    Everyone has the right to his/her own religious beliefs, but these beliefs have NO rightful place in the US legal system, any more than a belief in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, or The Great Turtle (i.e., the one that carries the earth on its back, per some religious beliefs) does.

  95. CD-I’m just curious, do you believe that there is anything of use in the Bible at all? I’m pretty new here and having no desire to make enemies, I like to know where people are coming from. Your views seem pretty apparent but I don’t like to make assumptions…

  96. nataliefond: Which version of ‘the Bible” did you have in mind ? Which codices and codice-meshing version ? Which canon ? Which translation/interpretation ? Which version of the Septuagint, etc. ? These are all important questions.

  97. The issue of gay marriage is not a civil rights issue. Homosexuals can choose to spend the rest of their lives with someone they love and not a person can stop that. They can even get married in a church. The issue is in the name: marriage.

    I hear people say, “Well, in other countries marriage is this or that.” Actually no, “family” can mean this or that depending on what culture – e.g. your cousins can be your brothers and sisters, or your aunt could be considered your mother, because the nuclear family unit is considered more fluid and larger. But, marriage has never been anything other than a man and a woman.

    In the novel by Orwell, 1984, one of the distinctive tactics of the totalitarian regime depicted was the invasion of the meaning of language. Old words were assigned new meanings, and nuances of expression were erased, so that the possibility to distinguish in the mind was almost impossible. Pick a new word, be creative, invent your own phrase, is what I say to people who want to “re-define” marriage, but don’t muddy up history by reading into it what is not there, and don’t confuse future generations by calling a same-sex union a marriage. Call it whatever you want, but don’t abuse language by inserting a lifestyle into what has always meant a man with a woman under a binding social agreement.

  98. Kristi,

    If the issue is only in the name (‘marriage’), then you’ve already lost the battle. If Christians are merely arguing semantics, then that betrays the utter weakness and hopelessness of their case.

    Shall we redefine anything other than a heterosexual couple and their immediate children ‘family’?
    Shall we redefine anything other than your particular denominational beliefs ‘religion’?
    Shall we redefine divorced individuals who remarry?
    Shall we redefine common-law marriage?

    By arguing for a constitutional amendment to ‘define”marriage’ as only between a man and a woman, it seems that conservative xns are the ones seeking to redefine things…

    (By the way: if you define marriage as between one man and one woman, who would Caster Semenya be able to marry legally (according to you)?

    If you’re relegated to arguing simple semantics, you need to realize the battle is lost, and you are now on the wrong side of history.

  99. It’s a strange notion that allowing gays to marry has some orwellian connotation. It’s also factually wrong that marriage has “always” been one man/one woman. Ironically for Kristi’s argument, until recently Texas defined marriage as between two people. The law was changed to one man/one woman after it was realized that it allowed gay marriage.

    Amazing how fast a legislature can move when institutionalizing bigotry is deemed necessary for the ‘good’ of society.

    J

  100. “They can even get married in a church. ”

    In the UK, which has civil partnerships but not marriage for gay couples, you are NOT allowed to have a civil partnership service in a church, even churches that welcome same sex couples. You are NOT allowed to have any religious language, prayer, dedication, blessing or spiritual connotation in your service whatsoever, even if the couple are faithful in their local church and even if the celebrant wants it. ALL services are vetted beforehand by the state and any religious content is ordered to be removed.

    This was an amendment put in by religious objectors to civil partnership, which was allowed because otherwise it looked like the legislation might not pass. It was demanded by those who wanted to make sure there was no religious dimension whatsoever to same-sex partnerships. Thus enforcing their narrow-minded view of their own religion on folks of another religion.

    So no Quaker couples can get married in their meeting house. No Unitarian couples can pray during their partnership service. And so on.

    Tell me again how this isn’t a civil rights issue?

  101. If marriage is for the support of children then what about the children of gay people? Do they not deserve the same support as children of biblical marriage? Each child is precious – it doesn’t matter if they were conceived in an unconventional manner – and deserve protection. If the religionists truly think marriage is about the care of children then they would want ALL children to have the legal benefits of married parents.

  102. I’d like to get back to the photo that started the discussion and the logical reasoning behind it. Let me get this right. Is it: Legalize gay marriage because you are going to look stupid in 40 years? This is hardly a compelling syllogism. Same with the saying “Be on the right side of history” What kind of argument is that? Does history always take the winning or right side? I sure both statements use a fallacy by way of some sort of intimidation or appeal to fear of being ridiculed.

    In fact, after a brief cursory reading of this post’s comments, and discussions with gay friends, I can not find a logical, compelling argument for gay marriage (and sadly many other gay rights). All the activists seem to do is put forth the ‘you are a bigot’ ‘that is hate speech’ ‘the Bible condones slavery’ (it does not, BTW) argument which shows how weak their cognitive skills are. When confronted with the comment that many gays don’t even believe in marriage (as a 3 minute web search will prove – ‘open relationship’) the discussion turns emotional and, as usual, name calling follows.

    By the way, the fact that the Bible was erroneously and wickedly used to subjugate women and minorities does NOT mean that the Bible teaches such things.

  103. This is the UK … with its own unique “Christian marriage tradition” ?

    OK

    So I guess it’s OK with traditionalists to get married, have children, get tired of Wife No. 1, start your own religion when the poobahs of the official religion won’t approve a divorce, and then get that divorce under the auspices of the religion that you fake-up, then marry Wife No. 2, then . . . later execute Wife No. 2 when she doesn’t give you a child whose gender you like: that’s all perfectly traditional, and Christian.
    OK

    Ahhhhhhh ! TRADITION !

  104. David, A logical, compelling argument for gay rights (as well as gay marriage) is that gay people are human. They are not some sub-specie of animal that must be tolerated. They are equal to you in every way in the eyes of God.

    BTW, the bible does condone slavery (also the subjugation of women and minorities).

    It is true many gays do not believe in marriage. Also, many straights do not believe in marriage but that does not prevent all straight people from getting married. My cognitive skills are just fine and I was able to write this without calling you a name. Do you have any other reasons to deny your fellow American equal rights?

  105. Dear Susan

    I do not have a reason to deny my fellow American equal rights. Why is such a question asked, or what is implied by a comment like that? I am looking for a logical argument. And I have not found one yet. A few questions: who is it that claims that gays are some ‘sub-specie of animal that must be tolerated?’ I have not heard any prominent Christian leader or conservative politician make such a claim. Since no one makes that claim, why bring it up? This is a straw man argument which falls flat and neither convinces nor proves a point. (it is interesting reading gay literature and media from the past that celebrates promiscuous anonymous gay sex; is that the behavior of men created in the image of God?)

    I have not denied or made comments regarding the equality of gay humans. Tthis equality theme has not been effective. Wouldn’t it be better to base an argument on freedom? Making people equal will only serve to make rich poor, talented people untalented, happy people sad, beautiful people ugly; hardly a convincing argument or desired outcome.

    I do not know where one can find in the Word of God support for your assertion ‘equal to you in the eyes of God.’ Equal to me in what aspect? There are letters of Paul declaring in effect no difference between Greek, Hebrew, slave, free person etc., but these writing were not to be taken in context of political or social freedom; nor do they address sexual orientation. There are instructions regarding the requirements for the church leaders and they include sobriety and marriage to one woman. (So even if this gay marriage thing is eventually approved, I think the sobriety thing will prove a stumbling block.)

    Exodus 21:16 clearly addressed the kidnapping of men and selling them as slaves. So I am correct in my assertion regarding the Bible not condoning slavery. God did address how servants/slaves were to be treated in the context of ‘if you are going to chose to live this way, here is what I require’. These rules cannot be turned into an endorsement of such a practice. The selling of a daughter to slavery or indentured servitude was for a man to pay off a debt, again that God gave rules regarding such transactions DOES NOT mean he delighted in them (it shows how far mankind had fallen). How shameful for a man in and honor culture to sell his family and himself in some cases to pay off a debt. Then there is the command for the year of Jubilee which is God’s way of setting things right.

    Jesus often spoke to women, even foreign and socially unpopular women and included them in his ministry. Paul made special mention to the women who helped him and others in his ministry. So despite what is taught as fact in universities and seminaries, there is no command from God, example from Jesus’ ministry or instruction from Paul to subjugate women and minorities. That the Bible was interpreted and used to do such a thing is wrong and does not serve to claim the Bible said so.

    I do thank you for holding back not resorting to calling me names. The implication that I want to deny rights to someone is incorrectly made. I still have not been presented with a logical, coherent argument.

    Here’s wishing God did create Adam and Yves.

    david

  106. David,

    You said:

    “Exodus 21:16 clearly addressed the kidnapping of men and selling them as slaves. So I am correct in my assertion regarding the Bible not condoning slavery.”

    Please read Deut 15, especially vv. 12 and following, specifically the part where God explains how to make someone a slave for life. Read the instructions on how to purchase someone carefully.

    Then please read Genesis 17:12-13 regarding instructions on how to circumcise the slaves one owns.
    Then please read Exodus 20:10 regarding Sabbath instructions for one’s slaves.
    Then please read Exodus 21, specifically vv. 20-21, where it reads:

    When a slaveowner strikes a male or female slave with a rod and the slave dies immediately, the owner shall be punished.
    But if the slave survives a day or two, there is no punishment; for the slave is the owner’s property.

    Then please read Leviticus 19:20-22, especially the part about what happens to someone who has sex with a slave who was ‘designated’ for another man, and how she shouldn’t be put to death because that would be destruction of the slave owner’s property.

    And THEN come back here and tell me that the Bible/God does not condone slavery.

    The Bible spells out explicit rules about how to make, care for, and deal with slaves. It was part of the culture, one in which God accounts for and regulates in the Bible.

  107. Two points:

    (1) Claiming that God per the Bible did not endorse/condone slavery is … nonsense. Paul did, too.

    (2) God did not create Adam and Ivres. God also did not create Adam and Eve … the latter is just a folk tale. If you want to pretend that Genesis is historically accurate, that is fine, but … it isn’t.

  108. David,
    Your strawman argument substituting attributes for equal rights is a transparent attempt at patronization. Equal does not mean same and you know it. If you truly want your views to be understood, stop insulting your readers.

    I am guessing you think gays have equal rights because they are allowed to marry someone of the opposite sex. This is NOT equal because gays form pair bonds with persons of the same sex. To have equality in marriage, gay people must be allowed to have their union recognized as legitimate. This is a logical, coherent argument and also simplistic.

    If I understand your post correctly you think gay people lack sobriety and are permiscuous. Such prejudice seems to indicate you don’t have a lot of interaction with gay people. If this isn’t bigotry, I don’t know what is.

    You are lucky because your wish came true. God did make Adam and Yves. Now you only have two wishes left so use them wisely. Implying that God did NOT make Yves leaves me wondering who did? How do you think gay people came to be?

  109. I should clarify what I mean when I state that the Bible does not condone slavery. The term commonly refers to the horrible institution that existed during the 17th through the 19th centuries in the European colonies, particularly in North and South America. It is this form of slavery – the taking by force of people and making them work until death- that Exodus 21 expressly forbade. It was punished by death. I realize this inconvenient passage is often and easily ignored.

    That God gave instructions on how slaves were to be treated does not mean he established, condoned, sanctioned or approved of the institution. There were rules on how to a man should divorce his wife; does that mean God condoned divorce? There are instructions on what cities should be sanctuary cities and how they are to be administered; does that mean God condoned murder or the behavior that caused a man to flee to such cities? There are instructions governing the consequences of a fight between two men, does God want men to fight? That there are rules governing behavior between (sinful) men and women, it does not follow that God approves of such behavior. By what rules of logic can it? It is as ridiculous as inferring that because King David ‘was a man after God’s own heart,’ God approves of wars, adultery and murder.

    The passages given to me dealt with the common practice at the time of indentured servitude where those deep in debt were sold to work off debt. There is no explicit statement “blessed are those who make slaves…. Thou shalt enslave all those who….’ What I gather are passages that are used to support one view by implication only. This is not a convincing argument.

    In Deut 15:12 the passage explains what happens after a ‘slave’ has worked for six years. He or she was to be set free. (This did not happen during the 17th -19th centuries, so the conclusion that the ‘slavery’ mentioned in the Bible was the very same institution is invalid.) Further reading reveals that lavish parting gifts were to be given to the newly freed slave. Hardly grounds for brutal behavior. This also did not happen in the colonies. In fact, most of the passages protected the slaves from ill treatment; NOT having sex with a female slave how has not been redeemed, (interesting thought: slavery as a metaphor for sin and the need for redemption) being set free if maimed during a beating- this to prevent beating a slave NOT to condone the beating; NOT sending a runaway slave to his or her owner, again a practice that happened in the US –further evidence that the two slaveries are not the same. This is important given that the only example of how to treat slaves came to the Hebrew nation by way of the treatment they received in Egypt.

    When a slave VOLUNTEERED to stay with his master after being given the opportunity to go free, God gave direction on what was to take place. This implies that both parties in the relationship knew the prior arrangement would be temporary.

    That God in Genesis told Abraham to circumcise his slaves only means that God’s covenant with Abraham extended ALL those under Abraham’s influence (a theme expanded in the New Testament regarding God’s Grace to the gentiles). It can be inferred that Abraham had the slaves before he was called and set apart by God. (Again, that Abraham’s faith was counted to him as righteousness; does that mean men should sell their wives to a ruler’s harem?) Certainly an historical passage in the Bible is not grounds for instruction or and should not be interpreted as a mandate. The Catholic church’s {erroneous} stance on birth control, having been derived from Genesis 38, being one example.

    Curiously absent are any words from Jesus condoning slavery. Even by some twisted logic the fact that Christ healed a Roman centurion’s slave, there was no implication from the rest of the Gospel passage that Jesus approved of the arrangement. It was a perfect example to show his disciples and those watching that Gentiles could exhibit faith and that the kingdom of heaven was open to them.

    One can guess that Paul did not expressly demand Philemon to free his slave in order to avoid further charges from Rome. However his appeal to Philemon to look on his runaway slave as a brother opened the door for the Holy Spirit to work on his heart and ‘do more that what I say’. The implication being that Philemon should free his Christian brother.

    So to recap: the slavery practiced in the Bible was not the same institution practiced in the American South, so the Bible can not be used to justify it. That is was (just at it is used today to preach wealth prosperity) shows how still fallen the preachers of God’s Word still are. Instructions and guidance regarding the treatment of slaves do not imply that the institution of slavery was established or approved by God; no logical inference can be made given certain absurd conclusions I made above.

    I really wanted a logical syllogism for gay marriage because I found that most arguments contained appeals to emotion or logical errors. I sent an appeal for a well-thought out, reasoned statement for support.

  110. David,

    What on earth are you talking about???

    Exodus 21:2-7 begins,

    Ex. 21:2 When you buy a male Hebrew slave, he shall serve six years, but in the seventh he shall go out a free person, without debt.
    Ex. 21:3 If he comes in single, he shall go out single; if he comes in married, then his wife shall go out with him.
    Ex. 21:4 If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall be her master’s and he shall go out alone.
    Ex. 21:5 But if the slave declares, “I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out a free person,”
    Ex. 21:6 then his master shall bring him before God. He shall be brought to the door or the doorpost; and his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him for life.

    Whether or not you define slavery narrowly as the practice in the 17-19th C European colonies, or broadly, IT’S ALL SLAVERY! And the Bible endorses it!

    Ex. 21:16 talks about kidnapping, not slavery. It has nothing to do with slavery. It follows a new set of laws and comes between striking a mother and father, and cursing mother and father. And you completely ignored all of the other verses specifically addressing slavery. So your ‘defense’ of your previous statement is to rip a verse out of context that has nothing to do with slavery and define that (and that alone) as ‘slavery’, and just ignore all the verses actually talking about slavery. Who taught you to read the Bible and do exegesis? Good grief!

    And are you claiming that slaves in the US south were never emancipated?
    And are you claiming that emancipated slaves in the Bible, WHO ‘CHOOSE’ TO STAY WITH THEIR ‘WIVES’ because, and again I quote Ex. 21:4 “the wife and her children shall be her master’s”, you’re arguing that this ‘choice’ is NOT predicated on a condition of slavery?????? HIS WIFE AND KIDS BELONG TO HIS MASTER!!! They are OWNED by his MASTER! They are not HIS children, although they are biologically HIS children!

    You’re not even splitting hairs here. You’re simply parroting absolute unrealistic falsehoods.

    And you’re completely overlooking (quite conveniently) that GOD IN GENESIS TOLD ABRAHAM TO CIRCUMCISE EVEN HIS SLAVES!! His what? His slaves! Good grief. The mere fact that God’s covenant extends also to SLAVES means that SLAVERY was an intrinsic part of God’s covenant!!!!!!

    Of course the slavery practiced in the Bible was not the same as the American south, just like the farming in the Bible was not exactly like the farming in the south. But it’s still farming, and it’s still slavery.

    To argue anything to the contrary is deliberately delusional.

    Cheers,

    bc

  111. I have had similar discussions with people who claim that drinking alcohol is a sin. They make a claim and then scramble to find Bible references to support their view. Often one has to arrive at the conclusion by some twisted logic or huge errors in inference. The conclusion one wants to reach is presented as a premise and the biblical support for it contains scraps of verses taken out of context and inferences that are logically weak. It may seem that the Exodus 21:16 verse is one such case, but a reading of the rest of the verse talks about selling him (as in selling him as a slave) or keeping him as a slave. The memory of being slaves was fresh in the mind of the Hebrews, did they need a dissertation on its evils or prohibition? What other exegesis (or context) needs to be done? How much did God have to address the issue of how bad slavery is to a nation enslaved for so long? This verse is nested between two verses that address hitting or cursing a father and mother. Other verses address fighting and a sneak attack, so they are all over the place; the only common theme for most of them is the death penalty. “Here are things punishable by death….”

    My statement that the African slaves were not freed after 6 years was to show that this slavery or servitude was different than the slavery in the Bible (and that often there is no distinction made). If there is evidence in the South of this practice, I shall stand corrected. I never used the term emancipation, so no conclusion should be drawn about their never being emancipated.

    Again, that God instructed how and what masters should do with their slaves, even down to the minute details was to keep masters (or freed slave) from wiggling out of any obligation to care for someone else’s (or their own) wife and children cannot be seen as an endorsement of the institution by inference. It was God’s way of saying “Okay, if you insist on living this way and with this institution, here is how you are going to do it,” and those passages are to be seen as a prohibition on a newly freed man saying “I did not choose this woman or her offspring (if indeed they are mine…), I am free from the responsibility of caring for them.” God knew his audience and addressed them accordingly. That he witheld commentary and rationale is beyond me.

    Curiously absent is any direct quote from God explicitly telling a prophet, judge or religious leader that he approves of slavery (or that drinking alcohol is a sin). What is being presented is “The Bible addresses the issue, God (or the bible) supports it”. The folly of statement like that can be seen in the questions I raised about divorce, King David and Abraham. Or to go further; God supports animal cruelty and sinning since God told Moses explicity how to sacrifice animals to atone for sin.

  112. Susan,

    Wow, it only took one exchange for you to start insulting me. By saying that I should stop patronizing and insulting the readers, you are implying that I am. I made an appeal to construct an argument for gay marriage based on freedom rather than equality since the term equality has been so nebulous and I gave examples of such lack of focus. How is that a straw man argument? How is that insulting?

    I have not stated or implied that gays could or should marry someone of the opposite sex, why are you attributing that to me and assuming I did? Your guess is wrong, I never made such a case and would neve wish an uuhappy situation like that on someone. I agree with you that to have equality in marriage, gay people must be allowed to have their union recognized as legitimate, but what is missing is the why. The logical syllogism and supporting evidence that ends with that conclusion. What is the premise? What are the steps to the conclusion? I am asking for them as I don’t know what they are.

    After more than 20 of going to gay bars and circuit parties and seeing the widespread alcohol and drug use, I maintain that my assertion regarding the aversion to sobriety gay men have is a correct one. On what I have witnessed at dance clubs and circuit parties, I have made the conclusion that these parties are not really fund raisers but distribution channels for party drugs (I yield that it borders on insulting, but it is clever). Reading many articles and editorials in local gay newspapers on the topic of party drugs I have been shocked to find that an opinion maker in the gay press actually advocated ‘the responsible use of crystal meth, I know my jaded and harsh views are not without cause. Reading articles where, like I said, promiscuous anonymous sex was regarded as the hallmark of homosexuality; watching the protests in San Francisco where gay man demanded that the bath houses stay open even after it was clear they were a breeding ground for AIDs; watching TV documentaries where Fire Island and New York’s Pier 48 were featured and remembered fondly, how is it bigoted to come to the conclusion that gay men are promiscuous? It is a fact and it has been celebrated. That it is an unpleasant fact does not make me a bigot. Again with the name calling…

    My last remark about God creating Adam and Yves was meant in jest as that would have solved the issue.

    Before one concludes I am a bitter queen, mother is still alive,
    d

  113. David:

    1. The Bible (and “God”) clearly condones slavery, even giving rules on how to treat “your” slaves, and

    2. You don’t like that fact, and so you evade it.

    . . . why not just admit it ?

  114. I’m going to allow the comments above for no other than to demonstrate the stereotypical prejudice that is rampant among opponents of same sex marriage. Go ahead and re-read the comment above. Maybe replace the word ‘black’ or ‘women’ in place of ‘gay’. Re-read the generalizations above. (“Well *I* have seen just how lazy and drunk _____ people are.”, etc. And since that’s MY personal experience, ALL ______ people must be that way.)

    The crushing irony is the line toward the end that reads, “how is it bigoted to come to the conclusion that gay men are promiscuous?”

    How bigoted indeed.

    It’s always easier to deny a group’s civil rights if you don’t define them as civil in the first place.

    bc

  115. David,

    You are all over the place. You’re attempting to argue from anecdotal ‘evidence’ from wine to divorce – anything but discussing the verses that address the topic at hand: slavery.

    It’s easy to make the Bible agree with your preconceived notions if you never acknowledge the verses that disagree with you.

    bc

  116. David,

    You seeming to assume that Christians “own” marriage. They don’t: ADJUST.

    And if you fail to recognize that Exodus ch. 21 purportedly comes from “God” . . . well, you’re a bit beyond help. So much for “God” not endorsing slavery. LOL

    And NOWHERE does “God” in the Bible denounce slavery. Don’t bother trotting out that quote from PAUL (who is NOT “God”) that there is neither slave nor free … blah blah blah. Paul spoke for Paul, he didn’t speak for God.

    I have never attended a gay party, while you have (per you) attended nearly 2 dozen. Not my interest, as I am hetero. But feel free to continue to attend those gay parties (allegedly for “clinical, research” reasons ?) and to base your opposition to SSM in part on what you “observed” there. … to me, that whole part of your comment was a little weird, but I am pretty boring after all, and hetero (to boot).

  117. Besides, Paul was speaking about life ‘in Christ’, and one in which there is neither ‘male and female’. Interestingly, those who are often saying that slavery was abolished by Paul’s comment ‘neither slave nor free’ in Gal 3:28, DO NOT argue for the equality of ‘male and female’ in that same verse. Often, many folks try to argue that ‘male and female’ still possess ‘different roles’ and that men continue to be the ‘spiritual heads’ of families, but do not apply that same hermeneutic to the ‘slaves nor free’ in the same breath.

    Go figure.

  118. David,
    If you are referring to the Stonewall documentary then my conclusion was very different. These 3 square blocks in Greenwich Village were home to gay and lesbian folk that were largely cast offs from communities that would not accept them. Not only had they endured torment from society at large but from their families as well. On these 3 blocks they could be themselves without worrying about harassment. But even here they were preyed upon by police, politicians and the mob. Gay people were easy targets because seldom would anyone come to their assistance. Finally they had enough and fought back. Because of the Stonewall riots, a freedom revolution was begun. To me, this is all good.

    The anti-social behaviour that you complain about IMO is an American phenomenon. In European countries where religion is less fundamentalist, gay people have acceptance. Since they are more integrated there are fewer anti-social problems associated with rejection and isolation. Suicide and self-hatred are also prevalent in the gay community. Adolescence is a difficult time for anyone but add to that the disapproval of practically everyone and it would be hard to develop a positive self image. This is what I hate. To see precious children damaged by “Christian” principles makes me so angry!

    It is not surpising that you found drunkards in bars. The reason you don’t notice gay people in other places is perhaps because they have become adept at not being noticed. Or maybe they are closeted or maybe they are living a lie and are tormented. Now they are asking for acceptance to live openly and become equal members of society. They are asking for their love to be legitimized so that they don’t have to hide or endure shame. This is the only avenue to a truly just society. Wouldn’t you agree that was what Jesus wanted for us?

    Finally, would you please tell me who made Yves if not God?

  119. Regarding Aug 30 7:42AM

    I have never made a statement opposing gay marriage. I asked for a syllogism or argument without insults or emotional appeals. In response, accusations and insults were hurled toward me. How and why is it that asking for a coherent, well-reasoned proposal for gay marriage one is labeled a bigot? (The accusation does serve to keep the accuser from offering a compelling argument.) I find that mischaracterizing and insulting an opponent or one who asked for a logical rationale for gay marriage does not advance the cause. It only reflects the accuser’s mindset.

    The examples I gave of alcohol and drug abuse I have witnessed in the gay community were to give support for the statement I made that sobriety would be an issue hindering one being a church leader should gay marriage be accepted and I was not speaking off the cuff. That I have observed such behavior and used it as support for such a statement is not a broad, sweeping generalization about all gays. I made no judgment about the right and wrongness of such behavior, no condemnation of the lifestyle choice, I have not proclaimed God’s wrath, punishment or justice on gay men either. To conclude I oppose gay marriage or want to deprive gays of any rights based on observations is intellectually dishonest. That some have not figured out that I am gay and would not want to wish fewer rights on myself shows how clueless some are.

    By implication to pile on and extrapolate that I am anti-black and anti-woman must be the epitome of cerebral prowess. With no anti-black or anti-woman statements to support such a claim, it is no wonder conclusions of slavery are drawn on passing references to slaves.

    Regarding August 30 7:11 AM

    Repeating a premise (or conclusion erroneously derived), no matter how often or loudly does not make a convincing argument.

    My point is that making the statement that God condones slavery is a premise. Most of the verses used to support that premise do not directly command the making of slaves. The logical process of taking a verse like Exodus 20:10, a commandment to keep the Sabbath day holy, find a reference to slaves in it, and concluded God endorsed slavery rather than conclude the totality to whom the commandment applies (man and animals); leads to making erroneous conclusions like the ones I gave: God endorses adultery (David), murder/genocide (the fate of the residents of Jericho) cruelty to animals (sacrificial laws). This ‘God mentions this tsopic: therefore, he endorses this behavior’ kind of logic is flawed. The inference drawn is wrong. And if I thought I needed to quote Paul, I would have done so already, correctly. Christians used the writings of Paul, who was inspired by the Holy Spirit, to condemn slavery in the Roman empire and in the 19th century. Or was it a bunch of atheists who made the case against slavery?

    Still looking for a direct reference where God instituted and initiated slavery as an acceptable human practice. Alas, no one can point to a Hebrews 11 or I Corinthians 13 (a long expose in other words) for a clue to God’s design for man to make slaves of other men (and women too).

    Regarding August 30, 2012 8:29AM

    I cannot begin to imagine by what twisted logic one arrives at the fact I think Christians ‘own’ marriage. I never made such a statement; I am asking for a logical argument for gay marriage. The state ‘owns’ marriage if such a concept of owning marriage is to be accepted. I would hope that this would be reason enough to get the government out of our lives and not regulate what happens between two consenting adults.

    I don’t go to gay bars or parties to confirm the bias and bigotry others accuse me of or for research purposes. I never sought anyone’s permission to go either, but thank you for your patronizing permission. I go for reasons that may bore you. Again that one assumes what my motives are and can be so wrong about it, no wonder erroneous conclusions are drawn from biblical text.

    I found it difficult to glean an argument for gay marriage in this post too.

    Regarding August 30 8:45AM

    I have not seen that Stonewall documentary, but I am familiar with that part of gay history (along with the death of Judy Garland and Harvey Milk’s murder) so I can’t comment on the film’s point of view. I find that fighting back difficult to meld with the popular slogan ‘violence is never the answer’, but nothing can be done about that now. (Insert appeal to follow the example of Gandhi or Thurgood Marshall who did provide a rational and well thought out arguments for their causes here.)

    My gaydar is finely tuned BTW and do notice gay people in other places outside of a gay bar. With talk of profiling in the news media, I know some-(to avoid charges of bigotry) gay men are excellent at profiling. It’s just called cruising. Please note, I make no judgments regarding the practice and no condemnation of gays because of it.

    Yes there are gay men who feel inadequate regarding their orientation and it is horrible that suicide, drug abuse and alcoholism are coping mechanisms for dealing with shame and despair. I would hope that a way to deal with low self-esteem is to celebrate productive achievement and character or arrive at a logical conclusion for the way one chooses to live and the values that one adopts. Lashing out with insults and calling others bigots doesn’t improve one’s lot or self-esteem. Bromides, bumper sticker slogans and platitudes don’t help either, and this is why I asked for a logical argument. That is why I think reasoned appeals for gay marriage and gay rights based on freedom are the second step. It is difficult, that is why I am asking for them. The first step is one you arrived at and have commented upon, empathy (or is sympathy a better word?)

    GENERAL COMMENTS

    God made covenants with people, not institutions. God did not tell Abraham to make slaves of other people in his Covenant promise or designate which people would or should be slaves so no, slavery was not an intrinsic part of the Covenant. Circumcision was a sign to others who was covered under that covenant. Or did God endorse mutilation so he came up with a clever idea, a covenant with Abraham?

    I am told I take things out of context. So I guess all of Genesis 17 was all about God establishing and initiating the institution of slavery; the same with the Exodus 20? God issued more that 500 laws to the Hebrews overwhelming them (so they couldn’t wiggle out of anything) or forcing them to live differently than they did under the Egyptians. I’m told that the 10 commandments were a summation of the Law. The law against stealing, isn’t slavery the stealing of the work, wages and life of another person? Jesus summed up the Law of God in 2 commands: Love God above all, love your neighbor as yourself; not much room for slavery in there. There are seemingly contradictory statements with regard to slavery, but looking at them through the record of God’s plan of Salvation throughout history, I have arrived at a different conclusion.

    That God did not universally condemn slavery is something someone else should ask him. It would be as foolish as asking why God doesn’t intervene when good people are persecuted, why there is so much evil in the world or why God didn’t let Job in on the secret deal he made. That God created man to have free will, should he really have to condemn the violation of someone’s freedom so explicitly? Couldn’t he just let humanity figure it out on its own? Slavery is a product of the Fall of mankind and often times God lets man continue his/her own way of doing things and not intervene to change things or correct the problem. Maybe God knew slavery was a metaphor for man’s bondage to sin and is in need of a Savior.

    The mischaracterizations that I am a bigot and oppose gay marriage (blacks and women) when I have made no such statement, the false assumptions about my motives, the repetition of the same phrase with no elucidation and the refusal to define by induction, deduction or any logical reasoning aside from ‘God said slaves, He approves of slavery.’, show there can be no further honest discourse. That is too bad.

  120. Regarding Aug 30 7:42AM

    I have never made a statement opposing gay marriage. I asked for a syllogism or argument without insults or emotional appeals. In response, accusations and insults were hurled toward me. How and why is it that asking for a coherent, well-reasoned proposal for gay marriage one is labeled a bigot? (The accusation does serve to keep the accuser from offering a compelling argument.) I find that mischaracterizing and insulting an opponent or one who asked for a logical rationale for gay marriage does not advance the cause. It only reflects the accuser’s mindset.

    The examples I gave of alcohol and drug abuse I have witnessed in the gay community were to give support for the statement I made that sobriety would be an issue hindering one being a church leader should gay marriage be accepted. That I have observed such behavior and used it as support for such a statement is not a broad, sweeping generalization about all gays. I made no judgment about the right and wrongness of such behavior, no condemnation of the lifestyle choice, I have not proclaimed God’s wrath, punishment or justice on gay men either. To conclude I oppose gay marriage or want to deprive gays of any rights based on observations is intellectually dishonest. That some have not figured out that I am gay and would not want to wish fewer rights on myself shows how clueless some are.

    By implication to pile on and extrapolate that I am anti-black and anti-woman must be the epitome of cerebral prowess. With no anti-black or anti-woman statements to support such a claim, it is no wonder conclusions of slavery are drawn on passing references to slaves.

    Regarding August 30 7:11 AM

    Repeating a premise (or conclusion erroneously derived), no matter how often or loudly does not make a convincing argument.

    My point is that making the statement that God condones slavery is a premise. Most of the verses used to support that premise do not directly command the making of slaves. The logical process of taking a verse like Exodus 20:10, a commandment to keep the Sabbath day holy, find a reference to slaves in it, and concluded God endorsed slavery rather than conclude the totality to whom the commandment applies (man and animals); leads to making erroneous conclusions like the ones I gave: God endorses adultery (David), murder/genocide (the fate of the residents of Jericho) cruelty to animals (sacrificial laws). This ‘God mentions this topic: therefore, he endorses this behavior’ kind of logic is flawed. The inference drawn is wrong. And if I thought I needed to quote Paul, I would have done so already, correctly. Christians used the writings of Paul, who was inspired by the Holy Spirit, to condemn slavery in the Roman empire and in the 19th century. Or was it a bunch of atheists who made the case against slavery?

    Still looking for a reference where God instituted and initiated slavery as an acceptable human practice. Alas, no one can point to a Hebrews 11 or I Corinthians 13 (a long expose in other words) for a clue to God’s design for man to make slaves of other men (and women too).

    Regarding August 30, 2012 8:29AM

    I cannot begin to imagine by what twisted logic one arrives at the fact I think Christians ‘own’ marriage. I never made such a statement; I am asking for a logical argument for gay marriage. The state ‘owns’ marriage if such a concept of owning marriage is to be accepted. I would hope that this would be reason enough to get the government out of our lives and not regulate what happens between two consenting adults.

    I don’t go to gay bars or parties to confirm the bias and bigotry others accuse me of or for research purposes. I never sought anyone’s permission to go either, but thank you for your patronizing permission. I go for reasons that may bore you. Again that one assumes what my motives are and can be so wrong about it, no wonder erroneous conclusions are drawn from biblical text.

    I found it difficult to glean an argument for gay marriage in this post too.

    Regarding August 30 8:45AM

    I have not seen that Stonewall documentary, but I am familiar with that part of gay history (along with the death of Judy Garland and Harvey Milk’s murder) so I can’t comment on the film’s point of view. I find that fighting back difficult to meld with the popular slogan ‘violence is never the answer’, but nothing can be done about that now. (Insert appeal to follow the example of Gandhi or Thurgood Marshall who did provide a rational and well thought out arguments for their cause here.)

    My gaydar is finely tuned BTW and do notice gay people in other places outside of a gay bar. With talk of profiling in the news media, I know some-(to avoid charges of bigotry) gay men are excellent at profiling. It’s just called cruising. Please note, I make no judgments regarding the practice and no condemnation of gays because of it.

    Yes there are gay men who feel inadequate regarding their orientation and it is horrible that suicide, drug abuse and alcoholism are coping mechanisms for dealing with shame and despair. I would hope that a way to deal with low self-esteem is to celebrate productive achievement and character or arrive at a logical conclusion for the way one chooses to live and the values that one adopts. Lashing out with insults and calling others bigots doesn’t improve one’s lot or self-esteem. (not accusing you) Bromides, bumper sticker slogans and platitudes don’t help either, and this is why I asked for a logical argument. That is why I think reasoned appeals for gay marriage and gay rights based on freedom are the second step. It is difficult, that is why I am asking for them. The first step is one you arrived at and have commented upon, empathy (or is sympathy a better word?)

    GENERAL COMMENTS

    God made covenants with people, not institutions. God did not tell Abraham to make slaves of other people in his Covenant promise or designate which people would or should be slaves so no, slavery was not an intrinsic part of the Covenant. Circumcision was a sign to others who was covered under that covenant. Or did God endorse mutilation so he came up with a clever idea, a covenant with Abraham?

    I am told I take things out of context. So I guess all of Genesis 17 was God establishing and initiating the institution of slavery; the same with the Exodus 20? God issued more that 500 laws to the Hebrews overwhelming them (so they couldn’t wiggle out of anything) or forcing them to live differently than they did under the Egyptians. I’m told that the 10 commandments were a summation of the Law. The law against stealing, isn’t slavery the stealing of the work, wages and life of another person? Jesus summed up the Law of God in 2 commands: Love God above all, love your neighbor as yourself; not much room for slavery in there. There are seemingly contradictory statements with regard to slavery, but looking at them through the record of God’s plan of Salvation throughout history, I have arrived at a different conclusion.

    That God did not universally condemn slavery is something someone else should ask him. It would be as foolish as asking why God doesn’t intervene when good people are persecuted, why there is so much evil in the world or why God didn’t let Job in on the secret deal he made. That God created man to have free will, should he really have to condemn the violation of someone’s freedom so explicitly? Couldn’t he just let humanity figure it out on its own? Slavery is a product of the Fall of mankind and often times God let man continue his/her own way of doing things and not intervene to change things or correct the problem. Maybe God knew slavery was a metaphor for man’s bondage to sin and is in need of a Savior.

    The mischaracterizations that I am a bigot and oppose gay marriage (blacks and women) when I have made no such statement, the false assumptions about my motives, the repetition of the same phrase with no elucidation and the refusal to define by induction, deduction or any logical reasoning aside from ‘God said slaves, He approves of slavery.’, show there can be no further honest discourse. That is too bad.

  121. lol. david, you said, “Repeating a premise (or conclusion erroneously derived), no matter how often or loudly does not make a convincing argument.”

    and then you post your same apologetic attempt at an explanation twice, using more words than last time.

    i’ve finally found something you’ve said with which i agree.

    no insults, no emotional appeals. your argument simply makes little sense, and the double standards, semantic parries, and special pleading you employ all betray the weakness of your position.
    the fact that you’re still arguing that god did not condone slavery when even the most fundamentalist christians on the earth concede this argument and argue ‘that’s the way god wanted it at the time’, demonstrates that you are willing to employ mental backflips during your specious ‘exegesis’ in order to twist the text into a situation where god ‘allowed’ for slavery, but never ‘condoned’ it. (again, the fact that god considered the children of slaves to be the property of the slave master is apparently completely lost on you.) anyone willing to blindly ignore facts of the text and the ancient world, and who then wants to offer commentary on the present one betrays their own duplicity.

    when you’re ready to use a consistent and honest hermeneutic to approach the text we’re discussing, let me know. until then, enjoy repeating your self and telling yourself that you’re making a difference.

    cheers,

    bc

  122. Milt:

    You wish to ignore the fact that in the Bible (any version) “God” condones and endorses slavery.

    OK.

  123. BC – sounds like David is making sense and getting under your skin. You can’t have it both ways. You accuse him of using snippets from the bible to support his position. Seems like that is exactly like what you are doing. Am I wrong? Maybe you should advise all your readers to take a comprehensive Bible study so that they can be as knowledgeable as you.

  124. hi scotts dad,

    i’d encourage everyone to get a bachelors in natural science, a master of divinity, a masters in ministry, a masters in ancient near eastern civilizations, and a phd in near eastern languages and cultures (hebrew, greek, aramaic, archaeology, etc.)

    that’s what i did, and while it is a long and exhaustive (and exhausting!) program of study, it really does allow one to understand what the bible says, what it does not say, and what other ancient cultures did.
    david is not under my skin (although folks who refuse to admit simple basic things like ‘god was ok with slavery’ just make for lengthy, circular conversations about things that few others challenge.
    david makes some good points, but his attempt to argue that god doesn’t condone slavery (and this his parade or anecdotes and tangential (and highly specious) prooftexts) just demonstrates the lengths to which some will go to never admit being wrong. when i make a mistake, or argue something that later turns out to be false, i concede. i do so quickly and have done so very publicly. it’s part of the scientific process. there would be nothing wrong with david saying, ‘i see your point. god did approve of slavery, offer rules on how to make slaves, and even gave regulations on how to circumcise them as part of his covenant, and rules about the progeny of slaves, and how they belonged to the master’, etc. that’s easy enough to say. but the fact that david won’t even concede a simple tangent like that demonstrates to me that he’s not about to get any argument on same sex marriage. the fact that he repeats himself at length doesn’t make his argument any less specious.

    i know you were trying to be a smartass with your last comment, but i really do hope that everyone takes serious a graduate level education in things they want to argue vociferously in public. no two scholars disagree, but a graduate education teaches students how to argue logically, make and concede points, basic rules of evidence, etc.

    i’d love for everyone to have the education i’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy. and, i’d love for people to read the entire bible, and make arguments that are consistent will all of the text, and not just the snippets one wants to read (while completely ignoring texts that easily countermand one’s claims).

    cheers,

    bc

  125. BC – I was wondering when you would call me a smartass. I have a degree in Chemistry and a Masters in Business Administration. You don’t have a license on logical thinking. Others might not have your credentials but still have the ability to see when one is attempting to push an agenda using illogic and tangential (and highly specious) prooftexts (I am referring to you- BC).

    I would like to continue but I would be late for Church – God Bless you and God Bless David for his knowledge and understanding.

  126. While I agree with what you say in the text below the image, and do think that in “x” years the majority of the population probably will look back in disgust at the previous generation (and hopefully, for the sake of the gay community, “x” years will be as few years as possible!) theres still something I find a little troubling in the approach used by the image.

    To me it sorta seems like an attempt to use fear to quell the opposition into being quiet. Its seems like saying ‘stop talking now or you will be punished in the future for what youre saying now’. While I see what the creator of the image is trying to say, and i agree with the underlying desire behind making the image, that just strikes me as kinda wrong to use the same approaches (ie fear) that’s been used to ‘stop’ (for want of a better word) minority groups speaking out throughout history.

    Its being used for a good cause, sure, but I just wonder if using negative tactics like fear of repercussions to get whats right is necessarily the best way?

  127. i think that many folks voting to suppress the rights of others are often fearful of exposure. that is, they want to suppress the rights of others, but they don’t want anyone to know that they are doing so. this is why, for instance, those who contributed money to organizations promoting prop 8 in california fought so hard to keep those political contributions from being disclosed: they want to discriminate, but they don’t want anyone to know they are doing so. nixon called this the ‘silent majority’.

    because of this, public exposure is often a highly effective tactic against those who seek to suppress the rights of others. most racists are racist privately; only a few do so publicly. most sexist men are so privately (or in some churches where it is still fashionable to suppress the roles of women).

    the image works because it’s a frightful foreshadowing of how these folks’ grandkids are going to look at grandma and grandpa. it works because it shines light on what they hoped would be anonymous, private discrimination.

  128. […] video all the way through to the end, and you’ll see acted out what I’ve been arguing here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here for years […]

  129. To David,

    I am utterly baffled that you can’t seem to find a reason to have gay marriage. Society, religious and secular, has built up marriage as the epitome of love, commitment and social status. It is a milestone in most people’s life to get MARRIED, not CIVIL UNIONED. To deny gay marriage is to affirm that same-sex relationships are somehow inferior to straight ones. That a gay couple can have everything EXCEPT that stamp of legitimacy, flies in the face of logic, as all other avenues are available. You can already get civil unions, domestic partnerships, and through legal loopholes adopt separately (though NOT together jointly) to form a family unit. Same-sex couples are basically penalized for being gay, as same-sex couples have to go through far more hassle to get their results, and they have less security in terms of children and recognition of their relationship in the first place.This is where EQUALITY comes in – you make a fallacious argument that equality is somehow akin to extreme communism in that everyone has to have the same amount of something. We are not talking about money, goods, property or emotions(?) – we are talking about civil rights that extend to a specific group. Marriage equality allows gays identical rights as straights, but does not affect straight people in any other way whatsoever. Gay marriage will not cause straight people to suddenly divorce, or straight people from marrying. Your argument is invalid, as you somehow think that allowing gay marriage will at the same time take something AWAY from straight people/Christians, which it certainly won’t. Think of it as, ya know, EQUALIZING what should have been there in the first place, not adding something additional.

    The only thing that will change is people will have to share the pie, and stop looking their nose down on something that really isn’t even their concern. Legalizing gay marriage is the final step in clarifying that, yes, gay people are full persons under the law, and because of that, you can aspire to be like them. You can marry, have a safe environment at work, start a family or even divorce, just like every other adult in the country. That is the key, and what petrifies the bigots – that their children won’t have any fear of being gay. That their country is saying that they can’t be marginalized, and that they can have the same life as any other person. That no amount of homophobia, family shame, or religious persecution can stop them knowing that it is OKAY to be gay. It’s okay because you have that status symbol of marriage, which we place so much value on.

    It makes no sense to put a stopper on full equality, when all the other playing pieces are out. The fact that people are obsessing over their fanciful ownership of the word MARRIAGE is incredibly strange, as the meaning of marriage has evolved so much. It wasn’t always religious, being at various times a LEGAL contract where a man gains possession of his wife, and then an agreement of two people combining their assets. When you strip the optional religious aspect of it, it’s solely a civil issue. Not all people are religious, and the government is bound to SECULAR law, so any Bible talk is invalid.

    You have a bizarre way of observation. You make claims of promiscuity and alcoholism, which you think is utterly rampant in the gay community, along with drugs. Yes, you don’t judge them for partaking in wildness, but that’s not the issue – it’s the fact that you seem to think gay people as a whole are somehow more susceptible to such vices in the first place that makes you sound utterly ignorant. The very simple answer is: stop going to places where the gay guys are all promiscuous, alcoholics and drug users, because that’s not where every single gay person is. Obviously, these types of gay people exist, and they make up a specific portion of the overall LGBT scene. But have you tried going to game stores, dog parks, restaurants, libraries or community centres? There are gay gamers, gay pet owners, gay foodies, gay academics, and gay volunteers. There is more than one mould for a gay person to fit into, you just have to look for them – and honestly, it’s not that hard to see. I don’t know how old you are, but it seems like you’re still riding out the 80’s gay revolution. It was a time that I liken to militant black power groups, as LGBT were starting to make themselves known, and to be heard, had to be LOUD. It didn’t always result in the most positive of results, but it needed to be done, and we are learning and healing from those missteps. Luckily, the younger generation don’t have to shout – they already have a voice, with gay politicians, more general acceptance, and a bright future. Gay marriage will only help to illuminate the path ahead, so that we can get closer to ending ANY inequality for all peoples.

  130. Justice Antonin Scalia has just compared the immorality of murder to the immorality of homosexuality. I wonder if there is a mechanism to remove a justice from the Supreme Court if they exhibit an obvious mental impairment?

  131. its sicking and evil marrage is between a man and a woman

  132. Good explanation, Vann. Well thought out.

  133. I agree with Vann, it is sickening and evil that marriage is only allowed between a man and a woman!

    ;)

  134. The Bible has lots of versions (this or that version of the Masoretic text, this or that version of the Septuagint text, for example) and lots of English language versions based on those, and then there are multiple versions of the books of the NT. Whew ! The NIV doesn’t even include certain verses that are contained in the KJV … imagine: just omitting some verses (or, in some cases … relegating some verses in the KJV to footnotes ! LOL).

    And since the Bible (any version) is folklore and not history, it’s fun take snippets from here and there and to do verbal battle with those who take different snippets. Fun for some folks, anyway; not so much fun for those who are in the odd position of claiming that the Bible IS history, since that’s an untenable position.

    And the problem with taking a “Bible course” (your suggestion) is … WHICH “Bible course” …. from which denomination ? IOW, which denomination teaches the theology that reflects the “true” version of “the Word of God” ? WOW.. Big Problem, no ? . . . and then put on top of that which English language version of “the Bible” is to be claimed to be the “true” version of “the Word of God” ?

    . . . and add to that the fact that various denominations have different versions of what constitutes “the Biblical Canon”. Lordy !

    . . . and there are thousands of Christian denominations, each of which claims to be the “true” one. . . . OKAY !

    Golly . . . you’d think that You-Know-Who would take a few seconds and just use his “big booming voice from the sky” and answer a few of these questions, but . . . not so. . . . “too busy” ?

  135. Interesting that Christians have NO problem with “marriage between one man and one woman” . . . at a time. The Rev. Dr. Jesus was anti-divorce (well, in one passage anyway ….), but that passage is just ignored by Christians who have decided that divorce is OK after all. Just ask Christian Hero Newt Gingrich.

    . . . and in the OT polygamy was OK with You-Know-Who, but I guess that’s a bit O/T, as this discussion has (pardon the expression) “evolved” now.

  136. […] imagine that picture of you protesting same-sex marriage 40 years from now: YOU ARE ‘THOSE PEOPLE… […]

  137. […] IS WHAT I MEAN when I say, “YOU ARE THOSE PEOPLE“. That’s you. When you condemn homosexuals and when you argue that they shouldn’t […]

  138. Whew! Came across this, read most of this, and…I still stick to what I believe the Word of God says. So, in that given 40 years, I really don’t care what anyone thinks of how I felt 40 years ago. My family knows me and they love me anyway! So does the God I serve. So, let us just agree to disagree.

  139. Well annm, with a few obvious caveats, I’m ok with you living your life by your own lights, a question Doc Bob raises is do you claim the right to impose your scriptural beliefs on others ?

    Stated another way, if you want your church law imposed on the body politic, why shouldn’t differing church law be imposed on you ? Either side can invoke special pleading that they know the ‘word of god’.

    As a practical matter, now what ?

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