A question for opponents of gay marriage

What, specifically, would be the negative consequences of allowing gays to marry?


No specific poster has been called upon to respond.
No previous wrangle has been referenced.

Anyone with a contribution is welcome. Anyone who has opened this thread to bash other posters, take it to the Pit.

[ /Modding ]

Keith Olbermann’s response to Michael Steele is entertaining and informative.

I’m not a big fan of Olbermann, but that was good.

Here are my thoughts (and please, let’s keep it civil, I don’t personally want to take this to the pit).

For background, I am straight, and married. And I’m not particularly religious, so that really has no bearing on my answer.

I don’t think there would be “negative consequences” for SS couples to be permitted to join into a civil union (or whatever the term is). I just personally don’t think calling it “marriage” makes it any easier to get the results the gay community seeks.

There are a lot of reasons for this, but I think for me it boils down to a word, and the meaning of the word. Marriage (AFAIK) has always been defined, no matter what other terms or obligations are associated with it, to include one man and one woman.

However, if you change the definition of the word “marriage”, what are you changing it to?
Two men, two women, or a man and a woman? OK, but why get stuck on the number two? Could it be a man and two women, two women and a man, three women? Who decides what the dividing line is? Who gets to decide what is right for others, and how they should live their lives? Changing a word like “marriage” is a slippery slope that I don’t think is necessary to go down.

SS couples should have the right to live in this world as they wish, but why does that mean that they can’t be happy if they aren’t “married”? For all practical purposes, they are, but the only difference is that their “Certificate of Marriage” might say “Certificate of Union”. Not a big deal to me, but as I mentioned in another thread (I think in the pit), I’m not emotionally involved with the desire of wanting to be recognized as married, so I can’t speak for SS couples. I wear a ring. That’s about it.

LOL That was pretty good.

The word “marriage” has a great many legal rights and responsibilities associated with it. “Civil Union” doesn’t have those.

But it hasn’t been. To point out the obvious example, even today in other countries polygamous marriages are perfectly legal.

Because that’s how the present system is set up. Anything involving more people would require new law to deal with the complications; single sex marriage doesn’t involve anything but removing the exclusion of single sex couples.

The problem is that they WON’T have the same benefits as a real marriage. That’s the whole point of creating a ghetto version of marriage in the first place. Separate but equal is never equal.

To be fair, that’s just about the financial effects of gay weddings, not gay marriages. Presumably, there’s a considerable backlog right now of gays waiting to be married as soon as it’s recognized, so there would be a large number of weddings in the year or so immediately following legal recognition. Once the backlog has filtered through the system, though, the number of economically-stimulative gay weddings would diminish to some much lower equilibrium figure, while the number of supposedly burdensome gay marriages would remain roughly constant.

Which still doesn’t change the fact that Steele’s argument is idiotic. First, it’s an argument not against gay marriage, but against any marriage at all: Straight marriages cost those small-business owners money, too, after all. Second, since when is costing some businessmen some money a valid reason to not recognize the rights of people?

Hey, if you think Gay Weddings are going to be a big business just think of all the legal fees that Gay Divorces will generate!

Wow. Is there no end to the foolishness.

It’s too late for it to be easy. What we’re hoping for is equal rights for fellow human beings.

Except that’s not true if you really examine history.

We’ve already changed it and there’s no evidence there’s any slippery slope. That’s an irrational fear with no basis in reality.

I wonder why now that SSM is in the forefront of discussion it becomes about gender now. I always looked at marriage as a level of love and commitment between two people and frankly can’t see any gender difference when it comes to the most essential part of marriage. It seems pretty clear to me that over the last several decades our society has diluted the meaning of marriage without SSM being involved. I suspect in a fairly short time we’ll see the same lack of commitment in SSM as we do in hetero as SS divorce rates are calculated. Still, there’s no logical reason to deny our gay citizens equal rights.

That is stunning!

But a devil’s advocate might point out that all those billions spent on same-sex weddings would be draining money that gay people are now spending on other things. Wealth would not be created, merely reapportioned.

That’s what a devil’s advocate might say, not me.

But don’t you think those of us who are actually in the gay community should get to decide what results we are seeking?

If they don’t, they should. I should ask, what are [civil unions] missing?

Perhaps, but they are not legal here. And that’s what I’m using as a reference point.

But that’s my point. Any change will involve some tweaking of the language. And a polygamist will feel they have the same moral high ground to stand on that you do right now.

This is something I don’t understand, so could you help me? I have a SS couple a few doors down from me. Very nice people. Don’t know or care if they are living together, sharing a life, or have a civil union. I just like their company. Assuming for the moment that they have been through a ceremony at some point, wouldn’t it be the same as me and my wife, sitting across from the barbeque? I honestly don’t get the Jim Crow, dirty water fountain visuals. This, to me, isn’t an issue.

Well, yes and no. If it involves changing the laws in the land, then the gay community has the right to bring it up for a healthy debate, which is what I believe they’ve done. If they refuse to budge and say it’s to be called “marriage” or they don’t accept it, then they will have to be prepared to have the issue die a cold death.

Originally that wasn’t your reference point: your reference point was, and I quote, “Marriage (AFAIK) has always been defined, no matter what other terms or obligations are associated with it, to include one man and one woman.”

My personal preference is civil unions for all, but that’s for entirely unrelated reasons; I’m nearly as happy with marriages for all. Stipulate that the word must change meanings in order to accommodate SS couples: so what? Where’s the harm in that? Words change meanings all the time.

Personally, when I think of my own marriage, the important part of it isn’t that my spouse has different plumbing from mine: it’s that we love one another deeply and have agreed to join our lives together, combining households and finances, sharing troubles and joys, and generally making one another’s lives richer and more fulfilling. If we were not legally married, I would still have held the atheist ceremony by which we really became married.

If I were gay, I would want that same setup, that same intertwining of lives, that I have now. Wouldn’t you?

And what better word to describe that intertwining than “marriage”? A civil union is my preference for everyone, but that’s only because I don’t want the government butting its nose into my love life: civil union would describe my tax status, not my love life. Whether straight or gay, the best word out there to describe joining lives with someone for whom you feel this sort of deep romantic love is “marriage.”

The issue is, iirc, that you would have one set of laws for ‘marriage’ and another equal set of laws for ‘civil union’. Theoretically, this works, but in practice, not so well. Every law that mentions marriage will have to be updated to mention civil union as well. Every new law about marriage will have to mention civil union. All forms that ask for spouses name will have to be updated with a spot for civil partner or whatever. Tax forms for married people, and an identical tax form for civil unions. The list goes on, and all of that takes time to change, and expense, and the separation of the two will likely cause some issues beyond the scope of changing the laws and the added expense.

Basically, with both marriage and a identical in all aspects but name civil union, it requires proactive effort to ensure that all marriage laws, old and new, cover both marriage and civil unions, and there is a greater opening for unequal enforcement of said laws. The easiest, and safest way to ensure the rights of gay marriage is to simply call it marriage and use the same laws, rather than identical laws.

Thats how I read it, at any rate. I could be wrong. My opinion on the matter is that marriage is between two consenting adults, full stop. If Jay and Silent Bob want to make their hetero lifemate status official, so be it. I’ll be down with polygamy once some smart person figures out how to keep multiple person divorces from being an absolute legal nightmare.

Anything that isn’t explicitly added to “Civil Unions”, in that particular state.

That’s rather narrow, and pointless. If it’s always been that way here, so what ? America is only a tiny slice of humanity.

Moral, but not practical; it would take more work to create a functioning polygamist system. And beyond eliminating the restrictions I don’t see any “tweaking” necessary.

First, you’ll get a Jim Crow situation for homosexuals the same reason blacks got one; that’s the point. Opposition to same sex marriage is purely a matter of bigotry. Civil unions will be created to be and treated as inferior to marriage because there is no other reason for creating them. If we were honest we’d call them something like “Unions for filthy queers” since that’s the attitude behind the idea.

Second; if there’s one system called marriage and another called civil unions, then the laws for one can be changed without affecting the other. Another reason why they won’t be the same.

Third, marriage is a legal institution with a great deal of legal precedence behind it; civil unions have none. Anything not actually put into the civil union law will have to be sued or campaigned for, again and again, state by state.

I personally do not consider you an unequal because of who you choose to spend your life with.

OK, for my part, I’ve based my response on many of the arguments I’ve read from the marriage = one man + one woman POV as being from the bible. Not sure if that’s an OT or NT concept.

No evidence yet, agreed. But remember Roe v. Wade was a case for an abortion during the first 90 days. Now, it’s morphed into the partial birth abortion, which I don’t believe was the original intent. When a door to something is opened a crack, it seems over time, more and more people push on that door to get their idea of what’s fair in their world into law. I’m not trying to compare the two, just prove a point that a slippery slope is not always an irrational fear.

Logic doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with an emotional issue. The word “Marriage” means certain things to a very large portion of the population. Change the word, and I have a feeling your “rights” will not be denied.

“Partial birth abortion” is just a scare phrase created by the pro-birth scum, not an actual medical term. And it refers to abortions that involve a dead fetus, or a mother who will die without it. They of course don’t care because hurting or killing the mother is part of the point of their movement.

If that’s an example of “slippery slope”, that’s an example of the slope going UP.