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Meghan McCain and Gay Marriage

Posted on November 20, 2009. Filed under: Great Reader Comment, Thumbs up, Uncategorized | Tags: |

A readers comment on Meghan McCain’s blog about Carrie Prejean

chengdulaoshi

I think what Ms. McCain is doing is calling out the Republican Party for *their* hypocrisy in sheltering Miss Prejean from outright ostracism in deference to her position on gay marriage.

I greatly respect Ms. McCain for her position on gay marriage, and I realize that it must take enormous courage for a Republican to express support for a gay’s right to marry the person he or she loves.

I believe that marriage is a fundamental human right, and laws restricting that right must be subject to strict scrutiny.

In other words, unless the law is necessary to accomplish a compelling state objective (and no less restrictive means is available to accomplish the objective), the law is unconstitutional and void ab initio.

I have yet to hear opponents of gay marriage state a legitimate, much less compelling, state objective that requires restricting marriage to a man and a woman. All they can say is “marriage is between a man and a woman because marriage is between a man and a woman.” This obviously begs the question.

Although the religious right and the anti-gay marriage crowd are certainly entitled to their personal notions of what a marriage should be, they must not be allowed to cram those notions down other people’s throats.

This nation was founded by people who were deeply suspicious of religiosity and the strong tendency of some people to subvert the legitimate purposes of law to further their personal religious agenda. That’s why the First Amendment prohibits the establishment of a state religion.

Laws forbidding marriages between homosexuals are analogous to the establishment of a State Religion, where marriage will only be permitted in cases in which it comports with the State Religion’s definition of a marriage.

I think President Obama has articulated a position on gay marriage that was designed not to offend a large percentage of the electorate. Although I support Mr. Obama, I think this is an unfortunate stance that he has taken, which is inconsistent with his stated desire of equal human rights for all Americans.

History has shown that the notion of human rights evolves with societal norms. At one time, slavery was not only legal, it was considered by many to be a moral good. Less than 50 years ago, a black man and a white woman could be imprisoned in America for up to five years for the “crime” of interracial marriage.

The day will come when the U.S. Supreme Court recognizes that anti-gay marriage laws operate to deny gay citizens their 14th Amendment right to equal protection under the laws, and identifies the right of gay citizens to marry the person of their choice to be a fundamental human right.

It may not happen during our lifetimes, however. 😦

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Atheists have lowest divorce rate

Posted on September 6, 2009. Filed under: Thumbs up | Tags: |

Barna report: Variation in divorce rates among Christian faith groups:

Denomination (in order of decreasing divorce rate)

% who have been divorced

Non-denominational ** 34%
Baptists 29%
Mainline Protestants 25%
Mormons 24%
Catholics 21%
Lutherans 21%

** Barna uses the term “non-denominational” to refer to Evangelical Christian congregations that are not affiliated with a specific denomination. The vast majority are fundamentalist in their theological beliefs. More info.

Barna’s results verified findings of earlier polls: that conservative Protestant Christians, on average, have the highest divorce rate, while mainline Christians have a much lower rate. They found some new information as well: that atheists and agnostics have the lowest divorce rate of all.  George Barna commented that the results raise “questions regarding the effectiveness of how churches minister to families.” The data challenge “the idea that churches provide truly practical and life-changing support for marriage.

Donald Hughes, author of The Divorce Reality, said:

“In the churches, people have a superstitious view that Christianity will keep them from divorce, but they are subject to the same problems as everyone else, and they include a lack of relationship skills. …Just being born again is not a rabbit’s foot.”

Hughes claim that 90% of divorces among born-again couples occur after they have been “saved.”

From Religioustolerance.org

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Cleve Jones to speak in Madison, WI

Posted on August 26, 2009. Filed under: Courageous, Thumbs up | Tags: , |

LGBTI Equality Now

Gay rights activist Cleve Jones will speak in Madison

Cleve Jones, friend of gay rights pioneer Harvey Milk and founder of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, will be speaking in Madison on Monday, August 31st. Jones is currently organizing the Nation Equality March in Washington D.C. on October 10 and 11 to demand equal rights under the law for the LGBT community.

Cleve Jones will speak at 7:30 p.m. in 3650 Humanities on the UW campus. Doors open at 7 pm. His talk, “Why We Can’t Wait,” will focus on the urgent need for demanding LGBT equality now.

“It is for equality. And it’s for shifting the strategy,” Jones said in an interview with Democracy Now. “We’re tired of this state-by-state, county-by-county, city-by-city struggle for fractions of equality.”

The event will be hosted by LGBTI Equality Now, a newly formed grassroots group in Madison and Haymarket Books, a Chicago-based radical book publisher. LGBTI Equality Now began out of inspiration from the victories of gay marriage in Iowa, Connecticut, Vermont, Maine and New Hampshire.

“We agree with Cleve Jones that it is time to demand full equality under federal law,” Emily Wickenhauser, LGBTI Equality Now organizer said. “With Obama’s vacillations on gay rights, it’s up to everyone who believes in equality, gay and straight, to demand civil rights.”

The event is co-sponsored by WORT Radio, Wisconsin Capital Pride, Outreach, International Socialist Organization, The Havens Center, Madison PFLAG, UW LGBT Campus Center and the MATC Pride Alliance, as well as LGBTI Equality Now and Haymarket Books,

Tickets are $5-10 (sliding scale) and are available at Room of One’s Own Bookstore (307 W Johnson St), Mother Fools Coffeehouse (1101 Williamson St), MATC Student Life Center (Truax, 3550 Anderson St.) and the LGBT Campus Center (UW Memorial Union, second floor), Woofs (114 King St) and Shamrock Bar (117 Main St.).

For more information, email lgbtequalitynow@gmail.com or call 608-446-0273. (more…)

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Legal, but immoral – Salt Lake Tribune

Posted on August 15, 2009. Filed under: Courageous, Great Reader Comment, Thumbs up | Tags: , , |

“It may be legal for Mormons to discriminate against gays in their public spaces, but it’s not right, and that makes it a gay-rights issue.”

Jens Hammer

Letter to the Editor of the Salt Lake Tribune. Jens, Thank You. (more…)

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Courage and the Great Nationwide Kissin

Posted on August 15, 2009. Filed under: Courageous, Thumbs up, What our children can teach us, When you know someone who is gay | Tags: , , |

“You just have to find the courage within to do what you want to do.” – Alex Oxford

Copied from CreativeLoafing.Com, today’s hero is 17 year old Alex Oxford. Alex Oxford, a senior at Marietta’s Wheeler High School, was inspired by the actions of gay rights bloggers David Badash and David Mailloux, who organized the national event.

Alex, you are my kind of young man and hero. I would be proud to have you for my son.

(more…)

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APA says ex-gay therapy harmful

Posted on August 6, 2009. Filed under: Great Reader Comment, Thumbs up, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

Also just in …

Water is wet.
Stones are hard
Oxygen needed to keep humans alive.

Posted by: Rob | August 05, 2009 at 03:11 PM

(more…)

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Amazing Grace

Posted on August 2, 2009. Filed under: Thumbs up | Tags: |

From a letter to the editor of the Morning Sentinel in Maine, Aug 2, 2009

This bill is not a religious issue — it is a state issue. If your church/religion does not want to sanction a same-sex marriage, then don’t. Marriage is a civil act — the religious part is optional.

So remember, you may pick and choose the parts of the Bible you wish to quote when it suits you, however, the Constitution is clear and applies to everyone.

Grace Peck

Waterville

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