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Post’s are hers, Responses are mine.

Topic:

Which leads to the actual point of this post:
Have you ever heard an argument against Gay Marriage based purely on logic?
I’ve only heard the religious argument…
if you’ve heard a logical one, I’d be very interested in hearing it…

Post

Oh, please.

There’s more to allowing gay marriage than arguing that homosexuality isn’t abnormal.

This is a LAW.

Changing those takes a bit of a long process, in case you didn’t know. Well, generally. In the instance of anti-terrorism law, however, the process was a lot quicker because there was a dire need for some measure of legal protection.

i’m from Australia, so if you’re not then this isn’t the same as for your country, but it’s probably similar.

The law is a reflection of the values and attitudes of society – of the broader community – and its purpose is to protect those.

If you live in a country where a good number of the population is against gay marriage, or even fence-sitting, then to change that law is not respecting the beliefs of the majority of your nation. Looking at it, though, most of those people tend to be from older generations, so give it 20 or 30 years and the percentage will probably change.

Any government who goes against what the majority wants risks losing precious votes in elections. i know i would much rather have a good party who won’t adopt a policy for gay marriage running my country than a party who is for gay marriage but can’t hold their weight.

Also, there’s more to marriage law then just those 4 little rules. (Being the ones to enter into a marriage: Age, consent, exclusion to all others, between one man and one woman).

How about divorces?

Easy enough to get a divorce these days. File some papers, and you’re good.

However, splitting up property?

Married couples seeking divorce and splitting up their assets use a different court to de facto couples here. If gay marriage was allowed then we’d have to make more courtrooms, provide more courtstaff, and you know what? That would cost taxpayers.

What about children?

In the case of divorce one parent is going to be the ‘residential parent’, even if they both have equal time with the kids.

When it comes to gay parents, one, if not both, of the parents aren’t going to be biologically related to that child.

What happens then? Is that child recognised as the child of the non-biological co-parent, or as the step-child? Because, i know that in the case of divorce, it’s pretty unlikely that a step-parent is going to be able to get any access to their step-child.

Laws regarding everything to do with married couples – like wills, medical consent, etc – and all the policies to do with taxation and benefits and everything will all have to change.

It’s a big, big deal.

Quit your whinging.

It doesn’t just affect you. Us. It affects everyone who is married, wants to be married. It affects taxpayers. It affects every single person in your nation.

It’ll happen one day, just not tomorrow.

Response

Not all the laws would have to change. While you make very valid points, the American court system works a little differently.

Our common-law marriages, at least in this state, are not true marriages by definition. If the couple splits, thats fine. There is no need for court. I’m not 100% sure that, if property was contested, that they would go to divorce court. They would go to civil court. The law is just so that, in the event of a partners death, the surviving partner has rights to the common property. This law is mainly to protect older people from their partner’s greedy children. It is much easier on them to not get married, because of taxation issues and Social Security.

However, we wouldn’t have to add more courts and staffers, just because of gay marriage being legalized. We are a minority in this country. We have 300,000,000 people. The court system is clogged anyway. We have needed to add more for years, but we haven’t. Legalizing gay marriage won’t make the problem any worse. We just need wholehearted reforms of our justice system, but that is another gargantuan issue.

Adoption laws would need to be changed, but since we aren’t allowed to adopt, I don’t see it all happening in one fell swoop. Marriage, then adoption. I highly doubt, despite what the EU is doing, that America will follow suit. Because the majority will, in this country, is apathetic or stupid.

Also, the point of laws here is not to reflect the will of the majority. It is to protect the rights of the minority. I’m not saying that it is different elsewhere, in all truth I don’t know. Marriage isn’t a right, if you don’t agree with me you are entitled to your opinion. However, if we went with the majority rule in this country, in national laws, homosexuality would be illegal nationwide. Thats why our system is like it is, to prevent discrimination of minorities, whomever or whatever they are.

You make interesting points, Megan. I think that you have made one of the more rational arguments that I have ever heard, not against gay marriage but against trying to step too far too quickly. The issue is more complex then any of us can comprehend. At least, I know I cannot fully grasp all the facets of it. It is something that we all must keep in mind.

Anyone more knowledgeable about this subject than me? I’m not in law school yet.

Post

“Marriage isn’t a right, if you don’t agree with me you are entitled to your opinion”

Haha, hey, we don’t even have constitutional rights in Australia anyway.

i had more to say, but i need to find my old legal book first.

i did a research assignment on allowing gay marriage, and found that there are a lot more rational, practical arguments against gay marriage than for. It will happen eventually though. One day allowing gay marriage will be seen as something of an imperative of every democratic nation.

Response

It is just the final frontier in a modern liberal society. We will get there eventually. I would have looked up the actual statutes about common-law marriage in my state, but I really didn’t feel like it.

Y’all don’t have a Constitution/Bill of Rights in Australia? Are you based on English common law, or do you have a code law system? I’ve never studied Aust. unfortunately, so I don’t know much about it.

Post

We’re based on the English system, but our laws are suited to our country and our beliefs. The UK has a Bill of Rights, i believe. We have a Constitution, and that governs the country, and no state laws or anything can override Commonwealth laws.

i think perhaps one of the main reasons we don’t have a Bill of Rights is because it’s not part of our collective desire.

We don’t really want one. i guess because we believe that democracy isn’t going to fail us or something.

After the Virginia Tech shootings we were all horrified over here… and we were all like “Why the hell don’t they just ban guns over there??”

Because you have a constitutional right to bear arms, and that can’t be stripped away from you, even if it’s for the best. Most Australians think Americans should sacrifice that right. But what would we know? We haven’t been raised with that. We don’t know what it’s like to have actual, concrete rights. We can’t plead the 5th. How many Australians do you think know what that means? Not many.

Our system works so that you’re innocent until proven guilty. It’s not a constitutional right. It’s a democratic right. It’s not written down anywhere that this HAS to be how it’s done. But if it wasn’t done this way it would be against the collective attitude of our nation. It wouldn’t be reflective of the democracy of Australia. However, our counter-terrorism law reverses the burden of proof, and you have to prove your innocence. But, that rarely happens, and it’s for the greater good of the nation. And that’s one instance when you have to look at what is more important. The rights of the individual or the safety, needs and desires of the broader community? The same goes for gay marriage. Gay individuals want this, but we’re largely outnumbered – for now, at least.

i really hate listening to my gay friends and my gay-supporter friends bitch about the legal system when it comes to gay marriage and everything to do with it because they haven’t got a clue about it.

This is a very, very big deal.

Changing this law will change court systems, society, education, culture.. .everything. Marriage and de facto relationships and everything that comes with them are parts of everyday life. They affect every single person in some way or another.

So, you may say “If you’re against same-sex marriage, then don’t get one!”

But, come on. That’s being just as unfair to them as we think they are to us.

We have nothing to lose.

We haven’t got gay marriage.

We’re not losing anything.

In their eyes, they might lose something.

The sacredness of their marriage.

Marriage – the union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others.

Who knows what else they fear might come about because of this.

Be a little more sensitive, guys.

A little more patience.

We’re not the ones who are afraid here.

They are, and we should respect that.

Response

Ok honey. Few things.

 

Australian’s don’t have a bill of rights? Fine. That has nothing to do with the popular will. Nothing whatsoever. Our bill of rights was put in place by James Madison, to protect against the kinds of predations visited upon us by the British, when we were their colony. He, and the other Founding Fathers, were afraid of a government growing into a totalitarianship, or a monarchy. They didn’t think that democracy was going to fail, they wanted to ensure that no one was able to subvert it from within to their own interests.

 

Those rights are what make America one of the best places to live in the world. I don’t care if that is your opinion or not, it is true. We may not be the most accepting country, and we may not be the most popular, but once you are a citizen you have rights. Inalienable rights. Not one person, from the Chief Executive on down, can subvert them. These rights provide protection from the same things that I mentioned in the first paragraph.

 

The Second Amendment is very controversial over here.

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

Original Text

“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Copied text sent to the states.

 

This is an ambiguous amendment. People argue that it only provides for an organized militia, therefore people don’t have the right to have arms at all, only when they are called on by the states to form a militia.

 

Why don’t we ban guns? Efforts are in the works. However, you think gay marriage is going to have widespread effects? Try banning guns in a nation where there are almost as many as there are people. In the US, there are 9 guns for every 10 people. You cannot effectively police that. At a very liberal estimate, maybe half are registered. Banning guns would only serve to take the guns away from the people that register them. The people that register their firearms are not the ones who commit crimes, by and large.

 

Does it matter what Australians think Americans should do? By your own words, the function of government is to reflect the majority will. I don’t agree with you, but you are probably right. You will find that the majority of Americans support the right to bear arms. To them, it is a simple problem of taking guns away from law-abiding citizens and not being able to take them away from criminals. Violent crime could rise. They won’t throw away such a right. So why would they ban guns?

 

Side note: Firearms are not allowed on college campuses. At all. So firearms were banned, in that location. However, he came there to kill people. Do you not think that he could have procured a firearm, even if they were illegal?

 

Another thing. Australians don’t need to know what the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is. Why not? Because it doesn’t affect them. I only know it because I live in this nation. It affects me directly. I don’t know the slightest bit about Britain’s, France’s, Germany’s, or any other nations. Good for you that you know ours. You are more internationally literate than I.

 

Australia is the only Western nation without a Bill of Rights in some form. Doesn’t that bother you? “We don’t know what it’s like to have actual, concrete rights.” I’m sorry for you. I have been raised in a nation where we do have such rights. Some of them are being suborned by the current administration. However, they are still there, they will be there once this administration is gone. Those rights protect the basic rights that everyone is entitled to.

 

I have a real problem with your statements that government is to represent the will of the majority. The greatest good for the greatest number. The Nazi’s said that.

“The law is a reflection of the values and attitudes of society – of the broader community – and its purpose is to protect those.” Laws are meant to protect the rights of the minority. We don’t make laws by acclaim here. Our elected legislators propose laws that address problems seen in the country, they are debated in the two houses, they are signed into law by the president, and then they are law. The point of laws is, again, to protect minorities. If we didn’t have such laws, if we went with majority rule, women wouldn’t have the vote and black people wouldn’t be able to eat in the same restaurants as whites. Democracy is a pretty ideal, but sometimes majority will is not correct. Wrong is wrong, no matter how many people say it is right, to quote Ward Cleaver.

The terrorism thing that you spoke about, it has its equivalent over here in the US. However, it is in gross violation of our Constitution. Also, I fail to see just what it has to do with gay marriage. Terrorism is a national security issue. Gay marriage is a socio-religious issue. They are not equivalent. They will not be equivalent. You cannot make them equivalent. We would not be doing something for the good of the nation to deny gay marriage. It is, again and most emphatically, not an issue on par with terrorism.

 

Our system is based on the principle of innocent until proven guilty. If you have a shred of reasonable doubt, you cannot convict someone. Obvious criminals have been set free, because of that. Also, many lives have been rescued from wrongful imprisonment by it. In this country, we would rather let 100 people go free than lock up 1 person unjustly. It is a constitutional right. Ever wonder why? Do you realize that that right could be taken away from you? You haven’t the slightest protection of your rights. If I were you, I would be very, very incensed.

 

Onto different points.

 

Marriage is hardly sacred. Divorce is on the rise. Marriages are being made and dissolved in days. Changes have come to marriage too. Whites can marry blacks. Whites can marry Latinos. That argument is not logical.

 

You may say, but they think that their marriages are sacred. May I point you to examples such as Ted Haggard and Larry Craig? They are hypocritical. The religious right attacks homosexuality in general and gay marriage in particular, as immoral, unnatural and a sin. Well, they are turning a blind eye to their own sin. They are rampant adulterers, liars, they are prideful and wrathful. Alcoholism is a problem with much of their congregation. All of the sins I mentioned above are considered deadly, or they are in direct violation of the Ten Commandments. Yet, the religious conservatives in this country ignore them, to concentrate on homosexuality. Jesus didn’t say a single word about homosexuality. Look it up. The words in red deal with peace, love and obedience. Not one thing about us in there.

 

I gave that spiel because, in this country at least, the main opponents are religious conservatives and their leaders. Non-religious people, religious moderates, et cetera, they do not care. They are concerned with more important issues, such as national security, the economy and terrorism. Did you know that there are still anti-sodomy laws in this country? That prevent relations between consenting adults? They are wasting police resources on corralling consensual sexual relations. A possible solution to a point you mentioned earlier, about Virginia Tech, would be to take police off inane things like this and assign them to make a complete firearms registry. However, some people in this country are more interested in forcing their ideas of morality onto other people rather than curtailing real crimes.

 

You may not be afraid, babe, but I am. If the religious right in this country had their way, I would be illegal. So would a lot of my friends. I would not be able to get a job, own a house, own a car, get a bank loan, or do any of the things that we take for granted. Based on their 2000 year old idea of morality. Which they cherry-picked from disparate passages of Scripture, not deigning to include the context. I’m sorry that I’m not sensitive to their predicament.

 

Who knows what else they fear might come about because of this? We know exactly what they argue will come of granting us equal rights.

“I think the radical view is to say that we’re going to change the definition of marriage so that it can mean two men, two women, a man and three women, a man and a child, a man and animal. Again, once we change the definition, the door is open to change it again. I think the radical position is to make a change in what’s been historic.” Mike Huckabee, Presidential Candidate, Baptist Minister.

 

See my earlier comments on how the definition of marriage has changed.

 

Their argument really has no basis. I don’t want to get married in a church. Their religious authority doesn’t need to recognize my union. I really don’t give a care if they do or do not. Gay marriage is a secular issue. Just like it should be. It is not an issue that religious views should be injected into. You said it yourself; they are worried about the sanctity of their marriage. Well, that is between them and their religious authority. The government cannot force churches to perform marriages for gay couples. Secular issue. Secular marriage. See below.

 

Another right that we have here in the US: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

 

Disallowing gay marriage based on religion? Violation of the above.

 

Change is the way the world works. Always has been. People have always been afraid of change. Oh well. If there were never change, Australia would still be a hellish penal colony for the largest empire the world has ever seen. If we listened to majority will, the United States would still be thirteen disparate colonies to that same empire. Africa would be the plaything of the European powers and the world would be their chessboard. Change is how we excise rot and decay, and move towards enlightened, liberal democratic ideals. Patience? We have been patient long enough.

Post

[This might be a bit choppy-changing because i was watching Home and Away and kept forgetting what i was wanting to say. p]

Not having an Australian Bill of Rights does involve popular will on some level.

Why do you think we don’t have one?

We don’t need one. We have an assumed right to the freedom of speech because our society would be revolted if we couldn’t say and express what we wanted (as long as it doesn’t step over the line of what said society deems appropriate). All of our ‘rights’ work this way. We don’t need them written down because they are inalienable human rights that act as the very foundations of a democratic nation.

Most kids here don’t even realise that we don’t have a Bill of Rights. But our legal system works so that the inalienable rights of the individual are protected unless it is necessary to override those. We have a common law right to silence. But seriously… not providing necessary evidence in a court of law, because it’s your ‘right’?? That allows dangerous people to walk free. I would personally rather sacrifice my right to silence if it meant that every other Australian citizen was in the same boat, and it meant that our country was safer.

It seems that most legislation that has been put into place for the purpose of national security is a little – if not very – extreme. But, do you really think that any government of a democratic country would pass laws that infringe the very rights they endeavour to protect? Of course not.

Ok. Off topic. Sort of. Is it though? Discussing legal systems and society is related to this, even if the examples aren’t. whatever.

Onto gay marriage.

At this point in time our country doesn’t want gay marriage approved.

Personally, i do. Don’t think i’m taking the other side here, because i’m not… i just think it’s unfair to have this discussion without levelling it out a bit, because that’s when you end up with a lot of bias and not a lot of thinking. i will never sit on the fence and watch people throw sticks at others. This is a GLBT community… did anyone actually think that there would be ANY arguments made against gay marriage in this thread?? How ridiculously unfair is that? We want them to think about our human rights, but here we are bitching about all of this without even considering their rights.

Majority will may not always be correct, perhaps, but it is unfair to the majority – who oppose gay marriage – to have the laws changed and shoved in their faces. Especially because they VOTED (like we have the ‘right’ to) for a particular party to run the government because of their adopted policies. Both liberal and labor – the two main parties here – opposed gay marriage because they knew that would lose precious votes because the majority of Australian citizens do not want gay marriage legalised.

So whose rights do you serve according to now?

Those who oppose gay marriage for traditional and religious reasons have the right to have the traditions, attitudes and values of their religion respected. Allowing gay marriage can – and often is – seen as going against that.

And everyone has the right to live the lifestyle they choose provided it doesn’t infringe the rights of others.

So.

Who is infringing the rights of who?

By having gay marriage legalised some people will see it as us infringing their rights. Because gay marriage will decrease the sanctity of the traditional institution of marriage. [i DON’T agree, but i’m just trying to get across how a lot of people feel, ok???] They have the right to have that sanctity respected and protected by the legal system.

And then, by not having gay marriage legalised our right to live the way we want is being infringed.

i’m making you think, by arguing and raising these points. Education is key in bringing about this change – education for both those who support and those who oppose gay marriage. Change is something gradual. And, in case you haven’t noticed…. This change is in the process right now. Gay couples can adopt (with several strings attached, however) in some parts of Australia. They can give medical consent on behalf of their partner, they can claim a lot of benefits and all that. This is happening. Gay marriage being legalised isn’t something that is going to happen… it is something that is happening right now. It’s a sensitive issue though. If laws are passed too quickly so many people would chuck hissyfits over it that they’d just have to step in and change them back. That already happened here a few years ago. Civil unions were legalised in the ACT, but people complained and the federal government overrode it.

Also – on a completely different note – it’s impossible to be patient for too long because that completely defeats the purpose of being patient in the first place. Because of the nature of what patience actually is, there can be no time limit on it. If you were patient for only a short time then you weren’t actually really all that patient then, were you? p

Response

We live in two totally different countries, love.

“But, do you really think that any government of a democratic country would pass laws that infringe the very rights they endeavour to protect? Of course not.”
Patriot Act. Protect America Act (illegal wiretapping) Hundreds of foreign nationals and citizens held without being charged on the suspicion of terrorism.

“We have an assumed right to the freedom of speech because our society would be revolted if we couldn’t say and express what we wanted(as long as it doesn’t step over the line of what said society deems appropriate).”
My statement about this is in my last post. Society does not deem what is appropriate. A tiny, determined minority determines what is “appropriate”. We have a right to free speech in my country, and it is one of our dearest. Just because someone says something that you find offense, does not mean that you can make them stop. Unless they are harming you physically, or slandering/libeling, you have no grounds for a suit. As it should be. Do you think that we would be allowed to speak, if it weren’t so? I don’t know about Australia, love, but I know that here we would be censored. Because the religious conservatives that control our government and lobby our congress think we are unnatural.

“But seriously… not providing necessary evidence in a court of law, because it’s your ‘right’?” I’m not sure if you are speaking in reference to Australia or America here, but in America that would be referred to as withholding evidence and is grounds for a mistrial at the least and additional charges at the most. The Fifth Amendment protects against self-incrimination, as I’m assuming your “Right to Silence” does.

“They have the right to have that sanctity respected and protected by the legal system.” Babe, this is the core of my argument. Here, they DO NOT have that right. That is a violation of the First Amendment. They do not have the right to spread their religious idea of marriage into what is a secular pairing!

“This is a GLBT community… did anyone actually think that there would be ANY arguments made against gay marriage in this thread?? How ridiculously unfair is that? We want them to think about our human rights, but here we are bitching about all of this without even considering their rights.” The point of this thread, if you read the original post, was to see if anyone had heard a logical argument against gay marriage.

“I’m making you think, by arguing and raising these points” Sorry dear, this is a bit of hubris on your part. Do you really think that none of us had thought about this issue? Deeply? I have put myself into the shoes of the conservatives, to use a tired expression. I see how they could consider it reprehensible. I have read the passages in Leviticus, in Romans, etc. That is not the point. They do not have the legal right to have their views enforced by the government. Not here.

I see your aim in bringing up these points, brava. They do need to be said. However, you are arguing for rights that they do not have. Church and State are *supposed* to be clearly and strongly separate. We can not have religious views enforced by the government. It is, again, a violation of our stated rights.

It seems to me that you are trying to make a case for the legality of the imposition of morality upon a certain demographic. Us. You have no leg to stand on, to use YET another tired phrase ha. The whole reason that America has such rights stated is to prevent that. We are a very, very diverse nation. 300,000,000 + citizens, and no clear majority. Therefore, to protect the rights of all the disparate minority groups, we need these stated rights. I don’t know how diverse Australia is, but I’m sure you see the problem with going with majority rule in a society like America’s.

Change may be happening there. Bully for you. Change is slowly happening here. But on a larger scale are amendments like the one that they are trying to pass in my state, which would strip rights from tens of thousands of citizens that don’t fit within its narrow definition of marriage. Elderly, common-law, you name it they are affected. We have national efforts to do the same damn thing. Don’t preach to me about patience, love. You seem to be living in a more tolerant society than I am.

Who is in the right here, Dear Reader? Your opinion is appreciated.

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6 Comments

  1. “Those who oppose gay marriage for traditional and religious reasons have the right to have the traditions, attitudes and values of their religion respected.”

    Yes, up to the point where they declare that one of their traditions/attitudes/values is to blatantly and gleefully discriminate against anyone they deem to be “unholy” or an “abomination.”

    They have every right to be disgusted, to not understand, and even to preach against it publicly. But once they cross the line and begin to actively infringe on the rights of others to live their lives as *they* see fit — when they attempt to force those of us who don’t feel the same way to live as if we did — they can expect a fight. No human being worth her/his salt will ever stand for that sort of oppression for long, unless they’re physically beaten into submission (and there are some that would do just that, given the sanction). Tyranny of the majority is tyranny as much as any other.

    As long as my actions do not cause you harm, you have no right to object to anything I do.

  2. “The law is a reflection of the values and attitudes of society – of the broader community – and its purpose is to protect those.”

    I’m American, so you would be within reason to ignore me completely, but I don’t think that laws exist to protect society’s attitudes … otherwise, we’d still have slavery and women wouldn’t be allowed to own property or vote.

  3. Perhaps I should clarify more. I am the respondent, not the poster. I live in Florida.

    Also, Stephen, if you had read the responses, you would see that I made that same argument. At the end of the longest one, I believe.

  4. Silver18, my blog was created for a media class, and we have to do a post on a blog we believe to be important and revolutionary. I’m considering posting a link to this one. Do you mind?

  5. Sure, JLL, go for it.

  6. Right-wing conservatives have a nice way of saying that my partner and I (we are a legally married gay couple in Massachusetts) who own a home, pay taxes, contibute to the economy, work in human services (education and medicine), belong to a church, work in a local mission, and support our friends and families don’t deserve the respect that we have worked for. However, the 13 year-old mothers that live off of welfare in our city (which we pay for) can get legally married in this country and get the support of people like Huck. Hard work means nothing to these candidates, just your ability to mirror their lives. God bless America.
    Jos76
    http://www.jos76.wordpress.com


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