Defense of Marriage


Comments

  1. Lucas says on Feb 28, 2011 @ 12:17 AM:

    That's exactly right I think. The problem is that homosexual activists have put played the "equal rights" card over a long period of time and that has attracted growing public sympathy.

  2. Rayburne F. says on Feb 28, 2011 @ 11:03 AM:

    Absolutely, and I would not be surprised if very soon a challennge to traditional marriage by polygamists will also be approved in the courts. They will have no choice given the new deconstructive meaning of marriage which, as Dr. Craig. could mean anything to anyone (and that includes "animal rights activists," who contend that animals should have the same rights as humans): you and your companion (i.e.woman, man, dog, cat, chimp, etc.)or more appropriately, in the case of homsexuality, many partners (men, women, lovers, etc.), though they may maintain that marriage means just one partner.

  3. Spencer says on Mar 1, 2011 @ 01:10 PM:

    Lucas,

    Perhaps you should ask yourself: why is the "equal rights" card illegitimate, as you imply? DOMA enforces discrimination against homosexuals, plain and simple, and such discrimination is patently unjustified. Can you justify the discrimination? DOMA treats gay and straight couples differently solely on the basis of sexual orientation, which is no different than treating couples differently solely on the basis of race.

  4. Stephen says on Mar 2, 2011 @ 01:03 PM:

    Spencer,
    Let's look at this in order. First, let's ask 'Is discrimination wrong?' Well, it is pretty obvious that discrimination by itself is not a moral wrong. Laws against murderers discriminate against murdereres. The question is whether that discrimination is warranted. You believe that DOMA discriminates against people with same sex attractions. For one thing, let's just be clear: it is not discriminating against those peoples' ability to get married. They have exactly the same rights as anyone else to marry a person of the opposite sex. What you feel is unfairly discriminatory is that DOMA does not recognize a particular definition of marriage, namely a union between people of the same sex.
    You then assert that treating people differently on the basis of sexual orientation is no different than treating people differently solely on the basis of race. Preventing a man and a woman from getting married because one is black and the other is white is a form of discrimination, namely, it prevents people who otherwise qualify for marriage, from getting married, solely on the basis of skin color. You cannot say that that is the same thing that is going on in the case of sexual orientation. Here the marriage is prohibited because they do not fit the definition of marriage. In order to allow gays to get married would require the definition of marriage to change. Not so in the case of race, which is simply to allow people who otherwise fit the definition of marriage to come together in union. You may think that this is a distinction without a difference, but if you have any respect for logic and reason whatsoever, you will recognize that the two do not equate.
    No one says that men cannot love each other as brothers. Love is a healthy thing. But the gay marriage debate is about sex between people of the same gender, plain and simple. Gay rights activists want the state to declare a union based on sodomy to be on a par with heterosexual unions. Here's a justification for the 'discrimination'. Sodomy involves sticking one's sexual apparatus in a place made for excreting waste. This is surely an obviously an improper and unnaturally perverse means of sexual gratification. It is contrary to nature and to Biblica revelation. It is a filthy practice, it is rife with health hazards and studies show that same sex attraction is a narcissistic impulse and behavioral disorder. Every civilized society has recognized homosexual behavior as immoral and deviant. We are not more enlightened now that we accept it as normal. We are increasingly perverse and that is something that Christians fight against by preaching the need for repentence and salvation through Jesus Christ.

  5. robaylesbury says on Mar 2, 2011 @ 11:15 PM:

    Hello Stephen.

    Many heterosexual couples engage in anal, oral, and a variety of other practices some might consider disgusting.

    I presume you will be seeking to target them next?

    And would you also care to articulate what you mean by civilized society?

  6. robaylesbury says on Mar 2, 2011 @ 11:48 PM:

    Incidentally, we also have evidence of homosexual behaviour in over 1500 species.

    http://www.news-medical.net/news/2006/10/23/20718.aspx

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/5550488/Homosexual-behaviour-widespread-in-animals-according-to-new-study.html#

  7. Rayburne F. says on Mar 3, 2011 @ 12:45 PM:

    The fact that heterosexual couples engage in anal sex doesn't change the nature of this unsanitory and unhealthy practice of sticking one's sexual apparatus in a place made for excreting waste, no matter how prevalent in other species.

  8. robaylesbury says on Mar 3, 2011 @ 11:15 PM:

    One of the most refined comments I ever heard on the matter of sexuality was ventured by a speaker at the Spring Harvest Christian festival some years back. He observed that a person should not be defined by their orientation. We as humans are rich and diverse and multi dimensional; to zone in on an individuals sexual identity alone is to reduce them considerably.

  9. Stephen says on Mar 4, 2011 @ 12:21 PM:

    Robaylesbury - you're absolutely right. People should not be defined by their orientation and yet that is what so many 'Gay and Proud' people do. Whole university programs are dedicated to Queer Studies. Shot yourself in the foot there, mate, because it's they that label themselves. The Bible prohibits sodomy. It doesn't recognize 'sexual orientation'. That's a term that the sodomites created in their bid to normalize their deviant sexual practices.
    And by the way, many more than 1500 species eat their own feces...your point is?

  10. Thomas says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 01:02 AM:

    Spencer,

    DOMA enforces a definition of marriage that has been recognized by the majority of societies throughout the history of civilization. This definition applies equally between heterosexuals and homosexuals. A homosexual man is legally allowed to marry all the people that I am allowed to marry. They are allowed to leave all their things to their partners in their will, They are allowed to give a power of attorney to their partners giving their partners the same privileges that married couples have in these situations.

    robaylesbury,

    Why are you asking if we plan to target people who have sexual practices that we find wrong? What does this have to do with the definition of marriage or moral status of homosexuality? No one is proposing that homosexuals should get locked up in jail. What is being proposed is that our society will function better with the traditional definition of marriage kept in place? Last time you tried to hide behind the status quo of the legality and popularity of abortion laws. Why do you now go against what is popular and legal? What I am asking is how will changing marriage laws benefit society?

    Your argument about the homosexual behavior of animals is an equivocation. These animals homosexual behavior is an act of domination or an agreement between two mails so that they can bond together to fight off other dominant mails. This has nothing to do with sexual pleasure. Homosexual couples produce no offspring. If a population does not reproduce then natural selection will ensure the extinction of the species, unless you want to through out all of Darwin’s work.

    Do you really believe that a male-male or female-female relationship is really equivalent to a male-female relationship?

  11. robaylesbury says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 10:24 AM:

    Hello Stephen, thank you for your comments. My response took the form that it did because it seemed from your wording that the sexual act was the thing you objected to rather than the fact that males can and do form close connections.

    Thomas, I raised the point about homosexuality within the animal kingdom to demonstrate that homosexuality is not limited to Ugly Betty fans.

  12. Spencer says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 11:55 AM:

    Stephen,

    You wrote: "For one thing, let's just be clear: it is not discriminating against those peoples' ability to get married. They have exactly the same rights as anyone else to marry a person of the opposite sex."

    Absolutely false. Homosexuals, unlike heterosexuals, do not have the right to marry their partners under DOMA. Further, DOMA bars the issuing of any marriage-based benefits to same-sex couples, even if they are legally married in the U.S.

    "What you feel is unfairly discriminatory is that DOMA does not recognize a particular definition of marriage, namely a union between people of the same sex."

    What's unfairly discriminatory about DOMA is that it denies any marriage-based benefits to same-sex couples.

    "Here the marriage is prohibited because they do not fit the definition of marriage. In order to allow gays to get married would require the definition of marriage to change."

    Definition of marriage according to whom? I have yet to hear a "definition" of marriage. Marriage, according to you, is a union between one man and one woman. But what is this "union?" Can you define it? Asserting that this "union" must be between one man and one woman isn't a definition of what kind of "union" marriage is.

    "Gay rights activists want the state to declare a union based on sodomy to be on a par with heterosexual unions. Here's a justification for the 'discrimination'. Sodomy involves sticking one's sexual apparatus in a place made for excreting waste. This is surely an obviously an improper and unnaturally perverse means of sexual gratification. It is contrary to nature and to Biblica revelation."

    Okay, so your problem is with anal sex, and same-sex marriage is based on anal sex.

    First, what do you mean when same-sex marriage is "based on" anal sex? Is having anal sex a pre-requisite for marriage? Why do you think so? Isn't it possible for gay couples to want to marry "based on" love? (It would be incredibly bigoted if you don't think this is possible or true.)

    Imagine a heterosexual couple who only engages in anal sex with each other. Wouldn't their marriage be "based on" anal sex, according to you? If so, would you be in favor of outlawing heterosexual marriages "based on" anal sex? It seems like your definition of marriage is: a union between one man and one woman not based on anal sex.

    Second, what about lesbian couples? Typical lesbian sex would not involve "sticking one's sexual apparatus in a place made for excreting waste."

    Third, your view that anal sex is an immoral sexual practice is entirely religiously based, and therefore you seek to impose your religious views on others who don't share your religion. Consider: suppose we can prove that anal sex, when the right precautions are taken, is safe. Would you still object to the practice as immoral?

    "It is a filthy practice, it is rife with health hazards and studies show that same sex attraction is a narcissistic impulse and behavioral disorder."

    What are these "studies?" Something tells me that: 1) no matter the evidence, those "studies" will never be discredited in your eyes, and 2) even if those "studies" are discredited, you would still maintain your opposite.

  13. Spencer says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 12:06 PM:

    Thomas,

    "This definition applies equally between heterosexuals and homosexuals. A homosexual man is legally allowed to marry all the people that I am allowed to marry."

    Are homosexuals allowed to marry their romantic partners? No. Are heterosexuals? For the most part, yes. I don't see the equal treatment that you see here.

    "What is being proposed is that our society will function better with the traditional definition of marriage kept in place? "

    First of all, no one is "taking away" traditional marriage. Marriage between one man and one woman will still continue. Second, function better how? By harming homosexuals?

    " They are allowed to leave all their things to their partners in their will, They are allowed to give a power of attorney to their partners giving their partners the same privileges that married couples have in these situations."

    Absolutely false. The whole point of DOMA is to deny same-sex married couples (who are legally married) the benefits that opposite-sex married couples receive.

  14. Spencer says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 12:22 PM:

    Thomas,

    "Why are you asking if we plan to target people who have sexual practices that we find wrong?"

    Because that is PRECISELY what your side is doing. Your primary objection to same-sex marriage is that it is based on sexual practices that you find immoral.

    "Homosexual couples produce no offspring. If a population does not reproduce then natural selection will ensure the extinction of the species, unless you want to through out all of Darwin’s work."

    Are you suggesting that the legalization of same-sex marriage could lead to the extinction of the human species? Do you know how illogical and incredibly ridiculous that sounds? You seem to forget: same-sex marriage would not prevent heterosexuals from marrying or copulating. If same-sex marriage would not prevent heterosexuals from marrying or copulating, how on Earth could the former ever lead to the extinction of the human species?

  15. robaylesbury says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 04:48 PM:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFkeKKszXTw&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Spencer, I think we are both wrong and could learn much from Betty Bowers.

  16. Thomas says on Mar 5, 2011 @ 09:52 PM:

    Spencer,

    Government marriage laws are not about marring romantic partners. I wish that this is all the issue was about. Marriage laws are about building a strong society that can rase the next generation. This is important because the next generation carries our society into the future.

    You say that no one is taking away traditional marriage. What is happening is that the definition of marriage is being changed so that gender distinctions no longer matter. I ask again: Do you think that male-male or female-female relations (relations that cannot produce offspring) are equal to male-female relations (relations that can produce offspring).

    You asked me how society functions better with the traditional definition of marriage. Men and women are different. They are different physically and chemically. They fill different roles in raising children. A child needs the discipline and leadership of a father, and the care and love of a mother. Do women discipline and teach leadership and do fathers love their children? Yes. But there is a difference between the love of a father and the love of a mother.

    No one has shown that DOMA harms homosexuals. It is discrimination in the workplace and violence by ignorant people that harms homosexuals. Your charge on the point of DOMA is blatantly false. The purpose of DOMA protects the institution from becoming meaningless. You can disagree that the institution would become meaningless, but you cannot argue that this is an attempt to harm homosexuals. That is factually wrong.

    You said that my side is targeting people that we consider to be immoral. There is much that could be said about this. I will keep on the subject of marriage and adult sexuality so that we do not get off topic. I do believe that homosexuality is an immoral act. I do not think it falls within the realm of the government’s authority to tell two consenting adults what they can do in the bedroom. I do not support making homosexual relations illegal. What we are doing is defending an institution that has been foundational to western society for thousands of years. We are being targeted, not the homosexuals. I saw a video of a homosexual protest where one of the protesters was holding a sign that said, “I can do what I want when I want.” That is what the homosexual movement is really about, tearing down the traditional foundations of western civilization.

    You wrote: “Are you suggesting that the legalization of same-sex marriage could lead to the extinction of the human species? Do you know how illogical and incredibly ridiculous that sounds? You seem to forget: same-sex marriage would not prevent heterosexuals from marrying or copulating. If same-sex marriage would not prevent heterosexuals from marrying or copulating, how on Earth could the former ever lead to the extinction of the human species?” Spencer, you have missed the point of my statement. My statement was in the context of homosexual activity in the animal kingdom. An animal population that does not reproduce will go extinct. Homosexuality, as it exists in human culture, does not exist in the animal kingdom. Animal populations that do not reproduce due to romantic homosexual relations will not reproduce. This is a biological fact. I was not suggesting that the human race is going to go extinct because of homosexuality. I was arguing that romantic homosexuality (what he have in our society) does not exist in the animal kingdom.

  17. robaylesbury says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 01:16 AM:

    Did he just say that homosexuals are trying to tear down the foundations of western civilization?

  18. Thomas says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:08 AM:

    Yes, robaylesbury, I did say that. To be more exact, they want to tear down the TRADITIONAL foundations and replace them with new values. A new definition of marriage would be tearing down the old definition and replacing it with a new definition.

  19. robaylesbury says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 09:10 AM:

    Society has many foundations Thomas.

  20. KStret says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:11 PM:

    I think the main issue was missed here. The justice department doesn't get to decide what laws it will enforce or not enforce. That is the legislatures job.

    If congress passes a law, the justice department has to uphold that law. They are violating the constitution by saying they do not like a law, therefore they will not uphold it. That is not how the separation of powers in the three different branches of government works. By violating that, you are making the legislature irrelevant and taking a step towards a dictatorship.

    Obviously, the idea here is to get rid of the barrier that protects individual states from lawsuits coming from states that have same sex marriage laws.

    One lone activist judge in Texas can simply decide that Texas will have same sex marriage implemented because of a lawsuit that a same sex couple from Massachusetts filed on the grounds that Texas will not recognize their marriage.

    This would impose same sex marriage by judicial fiat. This shows the fascistic mentality of that far left same sex marriage activists. If you don't like it, you don't have a choice. They will impose it on you by force.

    Also notice that the argumentation is exactly the same as the last time this issue was discussed on this board.

    The logical end conclusion of same sex marriage proponent's argument results in a society where you can be married two men and two woman simultaneously.

    There is also a naturalistic defense. This argument basically states that because there is homosexual behavior in the animal kingdom, we should embrace same sex marriage and homosexuality.

    The problem with this argument is it fails look at the reasons for homosexual behavior in the animal kingdom. Many times homosexuality is used to show dominance. It also happens because there are no animals of the opposite sex. These animals are not exclusively homosexual. Many times, the conditions that cause homosexuality in the animal kingdom would be akin to the conditions in prison.

    The other problem with this argument is that it ignores the naturalistic issues that would go against homosexuality. There is a sex act that guarantees that you will get AIDS. This sex act is commonly practiced in the homosexual community, which is why AIDS is prevalent in the homosexual community. It is also the reason AIDS is rampant in Africa. If you are looking at this from a perspective of naturalism, it would clearly show the sex act is unnatural and not meant to be practiced.

    Then there is the issue of reproduction. If the whole planet turned homosexual, the human population would be gone in about 100 years. Once again from a naturalistic perspective, homosexuality shouldn't be viewed as being natural or accepted as being normal.

    It is clear that same sex marriage proponents are not looking at this issue from perspective of naturalism but threw the prism of political correctness.

  21. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:11 PM:

    Thomas,

    "Government marriage laws are not about marring romantic partners."

    That's certainly a big part of what they're about - yes. Besides, you haven't responded to the discrimination I pointed out: unlike heterosexuals, homosexuals are not free to marry their partners. How do you justify this discrimination?

    "Marriage laws are about building a strong society that can rase the next generation. This is important because the next generation carries our society into the future."

    What are you talking about? Just about any couple consisting of one man and one woman can marry without any restrictions. Not all heterosexual marriages are geared towards raising the next generation. You seem to forget the fact that we allow many people to marry who are patently unqualified to be parents. Moreover, many gay couples are perfectly capable of raising children, if that is your concern.

    "You say that no one is taking away traditional marriage. "

    Correct. The legalization of same-sex marriage will not prevent "traditional marriages" -- marriages between one man and one woman.

    "What is happening is that the definition of marriage is being changed so that gender distinctions no longer matter."

    What a curious statement. Matter in what sense? Same-sex marriage will erode the legal requirement that a couple has to consist of an opposite-sex pairing, sure. So what?


    "Do you think that male-male or female-female relations (relations that cannot produce offspring) are equal to male-female relations (relations that can produce offspring)."

    Equivalent in what sense? I don't understand your question.

    " You asked me how society functions better with the traditional definition of marriage. Men and women are different. They are different physically and chemically. They fill different roles in raising children. A child needs the discipline and leadership of a father, and the care and love of a mother. Do women discipline and teach leadership and do fathers love their children? Yes. But there is a difference between the love of a father and the love of a mother."

    First of all, the question isn't: how will society function better with the traditional definition of marriage? Instead, the question is: how will society function better if traditional marriage is the only kind that is permitted to exist? Your answer does not adequately adequately address this question.

    "No one has shown that DOMA harms homosexuals."

    oh really? DOMA bars the issuing of any benefits to same-sex couples even if they are legally married in the US. Hence under DOMA, legally married same-sex couples are deprived benefits that they would otherwise receive. No harm here? Really?

    http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/10/26/doma

    "The purpose of DOMA protects the institution from becoming meaningless."

    I say again: DOMA denies legally married same-sex couples the benefits that opposite-sex married couples receive. Do you deny DOMA does this?

    "You can disagree that the institution would become meaningless, but you cannot argue that this is an attempt to harm homosexuals. That is factually wrong."

    It is NOT factually wrong -- DOMA certainly harms homosexuals. Now, maybe you want to argue that the harm is perfectly justified, which is one thing, but you cannot rationally deny the obvious.

    "You said that my side is targeting people that we consider to be immoral."

    I said that your primary objection to same-sex marriage is that it is based on sexual practices that you find immoral. Is this not true?

    "What we are doing is defending an institution that has been foundational to western society for thousands of years. We are being targeted, not the homosexuals."

    Complete utter rubbish. Defending from what threat? Let's be clear: opposite-sex couples, just as before, can STILL marry (I can't believe I need to point this fact out), so the so-called "threat" isn't an existential one. What is it then? When you say "We are being targeted," you make it sound like heterosexuals are being targeted, which is absurd. Get a grip on reality, will you?

    "I saw a video of a homosexual protest where one of the protesters was holding a sign that said, “I can do what I want when I want.” That is what the homosexual movement is really about, tearing down the traditional foundations of western civilization."

    Principle of charity here, Thomas. Is the protester really saying that he should be permitted to do WHATEVER he wants, including murder, rape, etc? You need to understand his statement in light of the context.

    Second, notice how you jump from "one gay activist said this" to "gay movement is really about tearing down traditional foundations of western civilization!" Come on now.

  22. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:23 PM:

    Thomas,

    You claim that gay activists want to "tear down" traditional marriage. Do you mean:

    a) gay activists want to prevent marriages between one man and one woman;

    or

    b) gay activists want to prevent "traditional marriage" from being the only kind of marriage that is legally recognized?

  23. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:43 PM:

    Kstret,

    "They are violating the constitution by saying they do not like a law, therefore they will not uphold it. "

    This is a caricature of the reasoning behind the Justice Department's decision not to defend to constitutionality of DOMA. Their argument isn't: "We don't like DOMA, therefore we won't defend it." Instead, their argument is more along the lines of: "DOMA is unconstitutional, and therefore we won't defend it." Do you not see the difference?

    Besides, there is precedent for this kind of decision. See: http://www.justice.gov/olc/nonexcut.htm

  24. KStret says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:53 PM:

    A 1963 congressional record of communists goals to destroy America, states:

    24. Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them "censorship" and a violation of free speech and free press.

    25. Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, radio, and TV.

    26. Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as "normal, natural, healthy."

    40. Discredit the family as an institution. Encourage promiscuity and easy divorce

    Why would communists want to do this?

  25. KStret says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:56 PM:

    Spencer,
    The justice department doesn't get to decide what is constitutional and what isn't. That is not their job and by making it their job they are violating the constitution and the rule of law.

  26. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 01:04 PM:

    Kstret,

    You are just wrong -- like I said, the decision does have precedent. Look at the article.

  27. robaylesbury says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 01:46 PM:

    I'm a bit unclear about the line of reasoning that states that if something is biologically un-natural we should refrain from it.

    Should consenting adults refrain from oral sex? From role play games where the female assumes the dominant role?

    Would I be placing western civilisation in jeopardy If my wife and I partake of these practices, or does the fact that we are heterosexual mean we can continue to have an interesting, creative, and mutually fulfilling love life?

    I guess what I am reflecting upon is the fact that we do a lot of things that aren't necessarily natural in the strictest sense?

    We're large brained mammals; I hope we have transcended, as Christopher Hitchens so deftly words it, the hallmarks of our lowly ancestry.

  28. KStret says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:07 PM:

    Spencer,
    The job of the justice department is to enforce the laws of the land. It is not the job of the justice department to pick and choose what laws they like. It is not the job of the justice department to determine what laws are constitutional and what laws are not.

    Those decisions are for different branches of the government to decide, not the justice department. That is why we have a separation of powers. If you have the justice department make decisions like this, we have a defacto dictatorship, which most progressives actually prefer as long as the dictatorship is making decisions they agree with.

    If you don't like a law, you can petition your legislature to remove it. If you can get enough support maybe you will be successful.

    If you feel a certain law violates your rights, you can take it to the judicial branch of the government.

    As for precedents, this is how the progressive movement slowly eroded the constitution. This started in the early 1900s.

    No longer is the question: is it constitutional or what did the founders believe. Now, the question is what do judges X,Y,Z believe about the issue or is there a precedent? No, the question is: is it constitutional. In this case, it is not. It is not the justice department's job to decide if states have a right to make their own marriage laws.

    The last time we had this debate, one of your arguments was predicated on a total misrepresentation and misunderstanding of the 14th amendment. In this case, it doesn't appear that you understand the separation of powers or the different jobs of the three different branches of government. The founders of this country would be 100% against the justice department.

  29. KStret says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:20 PM:

    Rob,
    Let's use Christopher Hitchens as an example here. In one of the debates I watched, Hitchens brought up the fact that cannibals get a certain disease from eating other people. From that, he deduced that that it is unnatural or against natural law to eat other people because of the disease that most cannibals get. Apply that same logic chain to the sex act that transmits the AIDS virus.

    You are not addressing the fact that two men and two women can not reproduce. Men and Women need each other to have children. Ardent Darwinist know that a species must pass on their genes to survive. In this case political correctness trumps Darwin.

  30. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:27 PM:

    Kstret,

    Once again, there is precedent for the decision that was made - whether you like it or not. Feel free to ignore this inconvenient fact; all you've demonstrated is that you don't know what you're talking about.

  31. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:36 PM:

    And let's be clear: Obama did not "suspend" the law or say that DOMA will no longer be enforced. That was not the effect of the decision. Instead, what Obama will no longer do is defend the constitutionality of DOMA in court.

  32. robaylesbury says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:40 PM:

    So I should restrict my sexual expression purely to acts that result in conception?

    Gulp. Someone isn't going to be happy. Don't suppose anybody wants to buy some condoms do they? They're un-natural; they prevent conception. Apparently I can't use them anymore.

    Walks away humming the Monty Python classic, "every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great. . ."

  33. Spencer says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 03:55 PM:

    http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/conlaw/2011/03/does-the-obama-dojs-position-on-doma-create-a-constitutional-crisis-redux.html


    "While the administration's DOMA shift is unusual, it is not rare. It has happened more than a dozen times since 2004 and many more in the past 60 years, including in some very important cases.

    * During the Eisenhower, Kennedy and Truman administrations, the presidents, in one form or another, refused to defend separate-but-equal facilities in schools and hospitals.
    * The Ford Justice Department refused to defend the post-Watergate campaign finance law, much of which was subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court.
    * The Reagan administration refused to defend the independent counsel law, a law subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court by a 7-to-1 vote.
    * It also refused to defend the one-house legislative veto of many executive actions; in that case, the administration was more successful, winning 7-2 in the Supreme Court.
    * The Clinton administration refused to defend a federal law mandating the dismissal of military personnel who were HIV-positive.
    * The George W. Bush administration refused to defend a federal law that denied mass-transit funds to any transportation system that displayed ads advocating the legalization of marijuana.
    * And in the George H.W. Bush administration, the Justice Department refused to defend a federal law providing affirmative action in the awarding of broadcasting licenses — a law subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court by a narrow 5-4 vote. Solicitor General Kenneth Starr was recused in the case, so the lead counsel for the government in the case was Starr's deputy, a fellow by the name of John Roberts, now the chief justice of the United States."

  34. Thomas says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 10:16 PM:

    Spencer,
    You clearly have some major problems here. You may care about whether or not you love the person that you marry. I care about whether or not I care about the person I marry. The government does not care about whether or not you love the person you marry. You are not distinguishing the difference between your concerns about you marriage and the governments concern about marriage laws.

    You do not understand my statement about marriage laws being about bringing up the next generation. If this were not true then why do married couples with children get tax breaks? It is to provide financial support because it is in the interest of the nation that our children are raised well.

    You do not understand how changing marriage laws will erode gender distinctions? Really? You also do not understand my question about whether or not relationships that cannot produce children are equal to relationships that can produce children? Really? Come on man. Answer the question it is not difficult to understand.

    You said, “I said that your primary objection to same-sex marriage is that it is based on sexual practices that you find immoral. Is this not true?” I have already answered this question. My opposition to same sex marriage is that it is by definition not a marriage. Marriage has been defined as a union between on man and one woman for thousands of years. To allow a new definition is to change the institution. You seem to think that because traditional marriages will be allowed that the institution has not changed. This is not true.

    You claim that DOMA denies tax benefits to gay married couples. You are missing something here. The federal government does not recognize these couples as married. DOMA defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman. This is the legal definition provided by the federal government. Technically the states that issue marriage licenses to gay couples are violating federal law (DOMA).

    The threat to traditional marriage is ideological. If you say there is no existential threat I agree. This is an ideological threat. Ideas are important. They shape our culture. They shape our lives. The traditional foundations of marriage are targeted (if they were not targeted then why change the law) ideologically. Have you not heard of the culture wars?

    "I saw a video of a homosexual protest where one of the protesters was holding a sign that said, “I can do what I want when I want.” That is what the homosexual movement is really about, tearing down the traditional foundations of western civilization."
    Principle of charity here, Thomas. Is the protester really saying that he should be permitted to do WHATEVER he wants, including murder, rape, etc? You need to understand his statement in light of the context.
    Second, notice how you jump from "one gay activist said this" to "gay movement is really about tearing down traditional foundations of western civilization!" Come on now.

    First, I find it amusing that you are admonishing me for not using the principal of charity when you do not afford me the same benefit. Of course I do not think that this person wants to murder, rape ect. I think he wants to be able to perform any sexual act anywhere he wants with anyone he wants no matter who is present.
    I picked this “one gay activist” because he represents the whole atmosphere of every gay rights protest I have seen. You do not think that I have any reason to be suspect that there are people that want to tear down traditional western society and replace it with some new society? Here is how Julian Huxley put it. "I had motives for not wanting the world to have meaning; consequently assumed it had none, and was able without any difficulty to find satisfying reasons for this assumption. The philosopher who finds no meaning in the world is not concerned exclusively with a problem in pure metaphysics; he is also concerned to prove there is no valid reason why he personally should not do as he wants to do... For myself, as no doubt for most of my contemporaries, the philosophy of meaninglessness was essentially an instrument of liberation. The liberation we desired was simultaneously liberation from a certain political and economic system and liberation from a certain system of morality. We objected to the morality because it interfered with our sexual freedom."
    -- Aldous Huxley, "Confessions of a Professed Atheist," Report: Perspective on the News, Vol. 3, June, 1966, p.19. [Grandson of evolutionist Thomas Huxley, Aldous Huxley was one of the most influential writers and philosophers of the 20th century.]

  35. Thomas says on Mar 6, 2011 @ 10:20 PM:

    Spencer,
    1. You claim that gay activists want to "tear down" traditional marriage. Do you mean:
    a) gay activists want to prevent marriages between one man and one woman;
    or
    b) gay activists want to prevent "traditional marriage" from being the only kind of marriage that is legally recognized?

    I answer c) gay activists want to fundamentally change the foundations western society. See the Julius Huxley quote in my last post.

  36. robaylesbury says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 03:15 AM:

    Biblical marriage, if we consider many of its leading figures, appears to be between one man, a few hundred wives, and several hundred concubines.

    Am going to need a considerably bigger tent.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFkeKKszXTw&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    And yes, the tone I am adopting for this thread is one of gentle, good natured mockery. It's screaming out for it. On the plus side, I do get to tweet the really unintentionally funny stuff.

    I'm still waiting on a response from my gay friend about whether he is personally involved in this war against civilization. Have been unable to reach him; I suspect he's in his underground lab continuing to breed his army of genetically enhanced saber tooth poodles. They come in a variety of pastels, as I understand it.

  37. Thomas says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 04:11 AM:

    rob,

    Just a couple of points. First, where is the Bible does God approve of a marriage of many wives? There are examples of these marriages taking place, but I do not know of any passage where God condones such actions.

    Second, I am arguing for a traditional definition that has been accepted by many civilizations. Mockery of the Bible does not refute the Bible. Refutation of the Bible does not refute my argument.

    Third, my claim is that there is an ideological war on traditional foundations of western civilization, not that their is a war against civilization. They want to fundamentally change civilization. Have you ever heard of the culture wars? If not perhaps you should watch the news. Also, if you cannot get my arguments right how do you hope to refute them?

    Fourth, what is your response to the Huxley quote? Is that evidence of a group of people that want to fundamentally change society? If not what is going on in this quote? Or would you rather ignore the quote so that you can maintain your position?

  38. John Quin says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 05:16 AM:

    I'm not sure I go along with all this ultra equality stuff.
    Would a hunter be able to demand membership in PETA?
    I very much doubt it.

  39. robaylesbury says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 05:23 AM:

    Hello Thomas.

    I consider the Bible to be an extended work man made artifact cobbled together by largely unknown authors over an extended period and set in a parochial corner or the middle east. That's my way of saying that nothing it says should be given too much respect. Ergo, I've no interest in it other than to note just how varied are its interpretations and the views of its devotees. To say it's malleable is an understatement.

    Once again, you use the term ideological war. I think this is a bit dramatic. To be sure, we all have to pitch our convictions in the marketplace of ideas. It's wonderful that we can; wind the clock back a few hundred years and religion did its utmost to ensure it remained the only game in town.

    I'm unsure as to why you are seeking to annex Huxley to your cause? I might have missed something?

  40. Spencer says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:21 AM:

    Thomas,

    "The government does not care about whether or not you love the person you marry. You are not distinguishing the difference between your concerns about you marriage and the governments concern about marriage laws."

    You're right that the gov't does not care about whether you love the person you marry. You still miss the point: DOMA is inherently discriminatory because it does not recognize (at the federal law) marriages between same-sex couples (even if they're legally married). Marriages between heterosexuals and partners of their own choosing are recognized, but marriages between homosexuals and their partners are not. How do you justify this discrimination?

    "You do not understand my statement about marriage laws being about bringing up the next generation. If this were not true then why do married couples with children get tax breaks? It is to provide financial support because it is in the interest of the nation that our children are raised well."

    Evidently, you failed to understand my response.

    Just about any couple consisting of one man and one woman can marry without any restrictions. Not all heterosexual marriages are geared towards raising the next generation. You seem to forget that we allow many people to marry who are patently unqualified to be parents. Moreover, many gay couples are perfectly capable of raising children, if that is your concern.

    " You also do not understand my question about whether or not relationships that cannot produce children are equal to relationships that can produce children? Really? Come on man. Answer the question it is not difficult to understand."

    Once again, as I said, your question needs clarification. In what sense are you using the term "equivalent?" "Equivalent in the eyes of the law?" "Equivalent" morally? What is being compared here? Again, you need to make this clear.

    "My opposition to same sex marriage is that it is by definition not a marriage. Marriage has been defined as a union between on man and one woman for thousands of years. To allow a new definition is to change the institution. You seem to think that because traditional marriages will be allowed that the institution has not changed. This is not true."

    Again, we need to be clear. The institution you think will change is NOT the institution that permits marriages between one man and one woman -- that institution will still continue. Marriages between one man and one woman will still continue.

    What you think will change -- and I agree -- is the institution that says marriage can only be between one man and one woman. My response: so what? What's the big deal? Get a grip and relax -- it's not the end of the world.

    "You claim that DOMA denies tax benefits to gay married couples. You are missing something here. The federal government does not recognize these couples as married. DOMA defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman. This is the legal definition provided by the federal government."

    Hence the discrimination. It denies tax benefits to legally married gay couples.

    "Technically the states that issue marriage licenses to gay couples are violating federal law (DOMA)."

    uh, no -- they're most CERTAINLY not. The fact that same-sex marriages are not recognized at the federal level does not mean they can't be recognized at the state level. There is absolutely no violation here.

    "The threat to traditional marriage is ideological."

    Okay, and why is this threat so important? Why is it so important to maintain that marriage must be between one man and one woman? Because it's custom and tradition? Is that your argument?

    "First, I find it amusing that you are admonishing me for not using the principal of charity when you do not afford me the same benefit. Of course I do not think that this person wants to murder, rape ect. I think he wants to be able to perform any sexual act anywhere he wants with anyone he wants no matter who is present."

    And, like I said, this would not be a charitable interpretation of his message. It would be absurd to think people have the right to perform any sexual act ANYWHERE with ANYONE.

    "You do not think that I have any reason to be suspect that there are people that want to tear down traditional western society and replace it with some new society? "

    You really enjoy being overly dramatic. What do you mean by "tear down traditional western society?" Can you be more specific?

    "Here is how Julian Huxley put it"

    Okay, your point?

  41. Spencer says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:28 AM:

    Thomas,

    "I answer c) gay activists want to fundamentally change the foundations western society. See the Julius Huxley quote in my last post."

    This is a dodge. I asked for clarification regarding your claim that gay activists wants to "tear down" traditional marriage. Do you mean:

    a) gay activists want to prevent marriages between one man and one woman;
    or

    b) gay activists want to prevent "traditional marriage" from being the only kind of marriage that is legally recognized?

    Instead, your answer makes a vague reference to "the foundations of western society," which doesn't answer the question. Your Huxley quote is a nice strawman; you pick a quote espousing nihilism and assume that gay activists, on the whole, agree.

    Again, how exactly do gay activists want to "tear down" traditional marriage? "Tear down" how? Perhaps your thinking will become more clear if you cease with the overly inflated rhetoric.

  42. Spencer says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:40 AM:

    Thomas,

    "my claim is that there is an ideological war on traditional foundations of western civilization, not that their is a war against civilization. They want to fundamentally change civilization."

    Again, can you spell out this "war?" Is it a war between those who want opposite-sex marriages to continue and those who don't? No. Is it a war between those who want to restrict marriages to only opposite-sex couples and those who don't? Sure, but so what?

  43. Spencer says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:59 AM:

    On the Imhumane impact of DOMA: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/10/26/doma

    "One of the most destructive aspects of DOMA is that it bars gay Americans who are married to a foreign national -- an increasingly common situation for Americans generally in a globalized world -- from obtaining a marriage-based visa for their same-sex foreign spouse. By contrast, Americans who are married to a foreign national of the opposite sex receive more or less automatic visas and then Green Cards for their spouse, entitling them to live together in the U.S."

    "Although it's difficult to quantify exactly, a comprehensive report from Human Rights Watch in 2006 documented that the number of gay Americans barred from living in the U.S. with their foreign national spouse is in the "thousands." And that's all independent of the denial of a slew of other benefits -- including survivors' benefits for federal benefits -- that impose serious suffering and hardship on gay Americans for absolutely no good cause."

    Again, I think it would be insane to deny that DOMA harms homosexuals. At the very least, proponents of DOMA need to recognize the harm, instead of callously denying that it exists. Their only legitimate move is to justify the harm. Can they?

  44. Thomas says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 09:29 PM:

    robaylesbury,
    You are missing something. I am not trying to annex Huxley to my cause. The point I am trying to make is that there are people out there that are trying to undermine the traditional foundations of western society. Huxley is admitting that he wanted to fundamentally change society because it interfered with his “sexual freedom”. He is one example of this motivation, there are others. That is my only reason for referring to him.

    You brought up the Bible. I said nothing about it. What kind of book the Bible is has nothing to do with anything I have posted on this thread.

    You think that the term ideological war is a bit dramatic. It may be. There is something that you should consider; this term is widely used by politicians, political commentators, and cultural commentators to describe the current conflict between conservative and liberal ideologies. This term is used by people on both the left and the right.

    As far as what went on in the past, I would suggest that you have misread history. A couple of hundred years ago religion was abused and misused in order to get or maintain political power. To judge a religion by the actions of those who pervert and stray from its teachings is wrong. But to get into that would be to leave our current topic.

  45. Thomas says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:11 PM:

    Spencer,

    You think that not getting tax benefits is discrimination? Why can’t I get these tax breaks as a single man? If not getting tax breaks is discrimination then all the single people in this country are being discriminated against because they do not get the same tax breaks. You are also concerned about gay couples getting their partners citizenship because our country does not recognize gay couples as married. It is the right of a country to make its own laws concerning marriage and immigration. This problem can be fixed by changing the immigration laws. They need a major overhaul anyway. You call these things inhumane and then you accuse me of being dramatic and using overly inflated rhetoric.

    You used a counter argument saying that many gay couples are capable of raising children. This is not my concern. Gay couples cannot reproduce. They cannot have babies. The gay couples cannot make new people when they have sex. And before you through out the tired objection that some couples will not have children or sex is not just about having kids, stop. My concern is not that all married couples will have children. It is that they can have children.

    Since you have not answered the question “are homosexual couples equivalent to heterosexual couples?” I will answer it for you. No they are not. Gay couples cannot reproduce. They cannot have children. Traditional couples can. I have my thoughts on the morality, but they have no bearing on this thread. I already stated that this is not my concern. Because gay couples cannot have children their relationship should not be considered equal under tax laws.

    You accuse me of dogging your question. I have not dodged the question. You presented a false dilemma. There was a third option that you did not present. I chose that option. Gay activists want to fundamentally change the foundations western society.

    I quoted a sign and you accused me of not being charitable. Then I supply additional evidence by quoting Huxley. You first say so what. Then you think that I am calling the gay activists nihilists. I am claiming that there are people and groups that want to fundamentally change American culture. You would be better off to try to convince me that the changes are good. I can keep digging up quotes of those who what to change the foundations of our society. If you do not know that societies have foundations then perhaps you should take cultural anthropology. One of the foundations of society is the family unit. Changing marriage laws changes the family unit, hence changing one of the traditional foundations of western society. How will society change? Take a look at the state of society in Europe. The number of marriages is down. The number of births is down. The only reason the population of Europe is rising is because of immigration. If you want another example of how changing the institution of marriage can change a society Google the Na in China. They have no husbands and no fathers in the since that our society has them. Society is built on families.

  46. Spencer says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:42 PM:

    Thomas,

    "You think that not getting tax benefits is discrimination? Why can’t I get these tax breaks as a single man? If not getting tax breaks is discrimination then all the single people in this country are being discriminated against because they do not get the same tax breaks."

    You clearly don't understand what I wrote. Not getting tax breaks, in and of itself, isn't discriminatory -- that's absurd and I never suggested such a thing. Instead, what I said was that denying marriage-based benefits -- including tax breaks -- to legally married same-sex couples, but not to legally married opposite sex couples, is discriminatory.

    "You are also concerned about gay couples getting their partners citizenship because our country does not recognize gay couples as married. It is the right of a country to make its own laws concerning marriage and immigration. This problem can be fixed by changing the immigration laws. They need a major overhaul anyway. You call these things inhumane and then you accuse me of being dramatic and using overly inflated rhetoric."

    Apparently you don't grasp the human impact of DOMA. Why should it be the "right" of this country to make laws that are inherently discriminatory and unjust? Did you read the article I linked to? Did you watch that video? Can you not honestly see the harm that's being done to homosexuals as a result of DOMA? Are you really that blind to the human element in all of this?

    "This is not my concern. Gay couples cannot reproduce. They cannot have babies."

    Okay, so what? What's so significant about this fact? Many opposite couples can't reproduce either, yet they can get married.

    "And before you through out the tired objection that some couples will not have children or sex is not just about having kids, stop. My concern is not that all married couples will have children. It is that they can have children."

    So what's your response to the objection? What role does the fact that gay couples can't reproduce play in your argument? Is it:

    1) Gay couples can't reproduce.
    2) Only couples who can reproduce should be permitted to get married.
    3) Therefore, gay couples shouldn't be permitted to get married.

    Obviously, this can't be your argument if you think infertile couples can get married. So what additional premises are you relying on to get to 3)?

    "No they are not. Gay couples cannot reproduce. They cannot have children. Traditional couples can."

    First of all, not all "traditional couples" can. Second, again, what's the significance of your factoid you keep emphasizing?

    "You accuse me of dogging your question. I have not dodged the question. You presented a false dilemma. There was a third option that you did not present. I chose that option. Gay activists want to fundamentally change the foundations western society."

    Your "third option" does not answer the question: what do you mean when you say gay activists want to "tear down" traditional marriage? Tear down how? Tear down by:

    a) preventing marriages between one man and one woman;

    or

    b) preventing "traditional marriage" from being the only kind of marriage that is legally recognized?

    Notice that your c) doesn't answer the "how" question at all -- it's completely nonresponsive.

    "Then you think that I am calling the gay activists nihilists."

    That's precisely what you're doing when you represent gay activists as endorsing nihilism.

    "You would be better off to try to convince me that the changes are good."

    You forget who has the burden here. DOMA is unquestionably discriminatory. Can you justify the discrimination? If not, then you ought to agree that the law is unconstitutional.

  47. Thomas says on Mar 7, 2011 @ 11:45 PM:

    If anyone has not heard of the term “culture wars” perhaps they should watch CNN, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, or FOX news. I Googled culture wars and got “about 7,790,000 results”. I rarely refer someone to wikipedia, but I think that this might be the quickest way to understand what I am referring to. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Culture_war

  48. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 12:05 AM:

    Spencer

    I answered your question.I answered the how. By changing the definition of marriage.

    DOMA is the law. The burden of proof is on you to prove that changing the definition of marriage is good.

    You are bing uncharitable to tell me why I used a specific quote especially wheh I explained my intentions. You are the most uncheritable person on this thread and you complain about it the most.

    I would make an exeption for unfertal couples because they fit the definition of marrage. You are being simplistic with this argument. My concern is not that every married couple has children. My concern is that the institution of marriage is about raising the next generation.

    You have not proved any harm done to homosexuals.I read the article and watched the video. While this is emotionaly distresing for the couple it is hardly a violatio of human rights. You deny the right to live to babies by taking a pro-choise position on abortion and then call this harm. Their relationship is not equal to a marriage. It is not a marriage.

  49. Spencer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 12:28 AM:

    Thomas,

    "I answered your question.I answered the how. By changing the definition of marriage."

    No, you didn't. Telling me that gay activists want to "fundamentally change the foundations western society" does not tell me how they will "tear down" traditional marriage. However, telling me that gay activists will "tear down" traditional marriage by "changing" the definition comes closer to an answer. I take it, then, that you believe b): "tear down" by preventing "traditional marriage" from being the only kind of marriage that is legally recognized.

    "DOMA is the law. The burden of proof is on you to prove that changing the definition of marriage is good."

    Wrong. DOMA, as I've demonstrated and is obvious, discriminates against legally married gay couples. If the discrimination can 't be justified, then it's unconstitutional.

    "I would make an exeption for unfertal couples because they fit the definition of marrage. You are being simplistic with this argument. My concern is not that every married couple has children. "

    So once again I asked: what additional premises are you relying to arrive at the conclusion that gay couples shouldn't be allowed to marry?

    1) Gay couples can't reproduce.
    2)...?
    3) Therefore, gay couples shouldn't be permitted to get married.

    "My concern is that the institution of marriage is about raising the next generation. "

    Surely you recognize a distinction between producing children and raising children. As I pointed out, gay couples can "raise children" as well - some even better than straight couples. But you were harping on the fact that they can't "produce children." So what is the focus here? Raising children or producing children? Take your pick.

    "You have not proved any harm done to homosexuals.I read the article and watched the video. While this is emotionaly distresing for the couple it is hardly a violatio of human rights."


    Suppose there was a law that effectively separated married heterosexual couples from each other, thereby causing them much pain and heartache. Would those married couples not be harmed, according to you?

    You seem to be assuming that DOMA has to violate human rights before it can harm homosexuals, which is patently false. Surely you don't mean that.

  50. Spencer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 12:31 AM:

    Thomas,

    "My concern is that the institution of marriage is about raising the next generation."

    The following needs to be reiterated: Just about any couple consisting of one man and one woman can marry without any restrictions. Not all heterosexual marriages are geared towards raising the next generation. You seem to forget the fact that we allow many people to marry who are patently unqualified to be parents. Moreover, many gay couples are perfectly capable of raising children, if that is your concern.

  51. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 01:11 AM:

    Spencer,

    You seem to think that gay couples deserve the same status as heterosexual couples. Why?

    You think that state law takes presedent over federal law in cases of marriage. Why?

    You seem to think that this change will improve society? How?

    You seem to think that all you have to do is make an accusation that their is unjust discrimination without showing that your assertions are true. Why?

    In order to maintain that the purpose of the institution of marriage is to produce children does not require that every marriage needs to have as its goal producing children. Bringing up infertile couples that are married does not change the nature of the institution. Allowing what was not considered a marriage to be a marriage does change the institution. Because some gays are better suited to raise children than some straight does not mean that in general that gay couples are better suited or even equally suited to raise children. What new standard will you use to define marriage? What will you do when that definition is challenged? What standard are you using to determine that couples are suited to raise children?

  52. Spencer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 01:15 AM:

    Thomas,

    It appears you have given up on addressing my points. From now on, let's focus on one issue at a time. It is your argument that gay couples shouldn't be allowed to marry, and you rely on the fact that gay couples can't produce children. My question: what role does this fact have in your argument? What additional premises are you relying to arrive at the conclusion that gay couples shouldn't be allowed to marry? Can you spell out your argument in greater detail so that we can examine it?

  53. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:

    Spencer,

    My argument is this; it takes a man and a woman to have children. Two men cannot have children and two women cannot have children. The psychological needs of a child maturing into adulthood are best met by a man and a woman. All societies are made up of family units of some sort. Using history as a guide, societies that have family units that are made up of married men and women having children seems to provide the most stable and productive societies. Changing this definition will disrupt the family units that make up society. It has been shown that most single parent families are less productive and more of a burden on society. Gay couples do not have a high rate of staying together. Gay couples are more likely to split up then straight couples. This would increase the likelihood of single parent families, which are a burden on society. What benefit to society would require the change of this institution? Because it goes against tradition? I do not have the nice clean syllogism that you are looking for. You need to make a case that this change will benefit society and not harm it. This is a burden that you do not seem to want to bear. That is the point of my questions.
    Gay couples cannot reproduce.
    The social function of marriage is to reproduce.
    Therefore, gay couples cannot meet the social function of a marriage.
    Infertile couples cannot reproduce.
    The social function of marriage is to reproduce.
    Couples that can reproduce are made up of one man and one woman.
    Infertile couples are made up of one man and one woman.
    Infertile couples meet the formula of a marriage.
    Infernal couple should be allowed to married.

  54. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:56 AM:

    I want to know why emotional love should be the only criterion of marriage. I want to know why gay activists have not made the compromise of having a legal domestic partnership that gives them the legal protections that they want. I want to know why, if this gay movment is so harmless to society, they have made videos like this http://thisismarriage.wordpress.com/2010/12/22/gay-activists-exploit-children-in-profanity-laced-violence-inciting-video/. Given the sign and the Huxley quote I want to know why I should think that the gay lobby is not trying to change society in the way that I have suggested.

  55. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 04:35 AM:

    Here are some quotes from the Gay Liberation Front Manifesto:

    We will show you how we can use our righteous anger to uproot the present oppressive system with its decaying and constricting ideology, and how we, together with other oppressed groups, can start to form a new order, and a liberated lifestyle, from the alternatives which we offer.

    The oppression of gay people starts in the most basic unit of society, the family. consisting of the man in charge, a slave as his wife, and their children on whom they force themselves as the ideal models. The very form of the family works against homosexuality.

    But gay liberation does not just mean reforms. It means a revolutionary change in our whole society.

    The long-term goal of Gay Liberation, which inevitably brings us into conflict with the institutionalised sexism of this society, is to rid society of the gender-role system which is at the root of our oppression. This can only be achieved by eliminating the social pressures on men and women to conform to narrowly defined gender roles. It is particularly important that children and young people be encouraged to develop their own talents and interests and to express their own individuality rather than act out stereotyped parts alien to their nature.


    Read the whole thing here http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/pwh/glf-london.html

  56. Spencer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 08:08 AM:

    Thomas,

    Like I said, from here on, I'm only going to focus on one thing at a time.

    Your argument doesn't make much sense. On the one hand, you emphasize the fact that gay can't reproduce and claim that reproduction is the "social function of marriage." On the other, you allow infertile couples to marry even though they can't carry out that "social function." How is it that you don't see the inconsistency here?

    "Gay couples cannot reproduce.
    The social function of marriage is to reproduce.
    Therefore, gay couples cannot meet the social function of a marriage."

    First, is the social function of marriage to reproduce? Says who? Second, the ability to reproduce has never been a legal requirement for marriage. Hence, you want to preclude gay couples from marrying based on a criterion that is never used on heterosexual couples, which is patently discriminatory.

    "Infertile couples cannot reproduce.
    The social function of marriage is to reproduce.
    Couples that can reproduce are made up of one man and one woman.
    Infertile couples are made up of one man and one woman.
    Infertile couples meet the formula of a marriage."

    Actually, this argument is invalid. If the social function of marriage is to reproduce, and infertile couples can't reproduce, it follows that infertile couples can't meet the social function of marriage. The fact that infertile couples are made up of one man and one woman doesn't mean these pairings meet what you call the "social function" of marriage.

  57. Payton Alexander says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 08:27 AM:

    Thomas,

    I don't think the Gay Liberation Front is a very representative organization. Although there were a large number of people, hippies, junkies, racial minorities, and gays included, in the 60's and 70's that fought for "liberation" and "free love", the vast, overwhelming majority of gay people today no longer care for these things. Gays as a social group have matured and become much more conservative in this decade than they were back then. Just look at the things they were fighting for: Back then, they fought against marriage, now they beg FOR the right to get married. Back then, they fought against the traditional family, now they ask FOR the right to have children and settle down, and get a productive job without discriminatory interference. Back then, they fought against war, they rebelled against the government fighting the war in Vietnam, now they demand to JOIN the military, and serve their country, fighting openly alongside the straight people they had once considered "oppressive".

    Trust me, if anything is clear, it is that the push for gay rights is not radical, it is conservative. It's not shocking or crazy, it's common sense. It's not wrong or shameful, it's perfectly acceptable to rational minded Christians.

    I'm not aware of the greater context of this conversation. I just saw you quoting outdated sources from social outcasts and radicals as if to show that gays are out to radically alter traditional society. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Far from wanting to destroy it, they want to JOIN it.

  58. KStret says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 10:09 AM:

    Spencer,
    "Once again, there is precedent for the decision that was made"

    Once again, the question is not is there a precedent but is it constitutional. The question is, would the founders of this country support the decision of the justice department.

    It is transparently obvious that the goal of the justice department is to tear down the protection that individual states have in making their own marriage laws.

    When a couple from Massachusetts goes judge shopping, sues Texas for not recognizing their marriage, and an activist judge rules in favor of the Massachusetts couple, the government will not defend the law.

    As I said before, you are fine with that because you want to force same sex marriage on people and you don't care how it is passed. I would advise you on changing that position because if someone gets into office and uses the same "precedents" but you disagree with the things they are doing, you will be a hypocrite and have no leg to stand on.

    You have admitted that polygamist have the same right to redefine marriage as homosexuals do. In your view, polygamists can go to court and make polygamy the law of the land by judicial tyranny. By your own rationale, the people of this country do not have a choice of the direction of the culture and are being forced to accept your view of a marriage free for all.

    The only arguments you have to defend your position is to assume that you are correct that redefining marriage is in fact a right without giving any rationale why this is the case(while using the Spencer equivocation debate technique) and to add a justified discrimination clause to the 14th amendment that doesn't exist.

    In other words, you think same sex marriage is a great idea and you know better than everyone else. Since you are enlightened and people who disagree with you are intellectually challenged, you don't have to follow the rule of the law or the constitution. Redefining marriage is a right and homosexuals are being discriminated against just because you say so.

  59. Spenncer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 10:52 AM:

    Kstret,

    "Once again, the question is not is there a precedent but is it constitutional."

    And once again, there is constitutional precedent for the decision. Deal with it.

    I won't bother commenting on the other strawman you typically engage in.

  60. KStret says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 10:53 AM:

    Rob,
    "So I should restrict my sexual expression purely to acts that result in conception?"

    You are making a strawman argument. If you like Christopher Hitchens and you agree with his thinking on why cannibalism should not be practiced, you should apply the same reasoning to a sex act that gives people the HIV virus.

    If you are going to use naturalism as a rationale to make a case in favor of same sex marriage and homosexual acceptance, you should be consistent in your thinking.

    You are not being consistent. If Darwinism dictates that species must pass on their genes to survive, homosexuality has to be viewed as abnormal because homosexuals have lost the desire to reproduce. That could be a genetic abnormality, a mental abnormality, or both.

    On top of that, if homosexuality can be a mental abnormality by having a politically correct philosophy of accepting homosexuality as normal, you are inherently harming people who have mental problems.

    I recently read a few books about the catholic church pedophilia scandal. Many of the victims have major problems with their sexual identity.

    The reason for this, is there is a defense mechanism that many children who are repeatedly sexually abused use to cope with the abuse.

    Instead of being afraid all the time and feeling horrible, the mind flips a switch and they start to like the abuse. What happens to adults who have been molested when they go to a psychiatrist for help and the psychiatrist has the politically correct mindset that being gay is normal?

  61. KStret says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 11:04 AM:

    Payton,
    " matured and become much more conservative in this decade than they were back then"

    This statement is patently false. There have been a myriad of scandals associated with the homosexual political movement that often times goes unreported. These include teaching children the proper way to "fist" someone at a sex-ed seminar, homosexual groups giving underage children the addresses of adult gay bars, encouraging children to try being gay at sex ed seminars, holding seminars for school teachers on techniques on how to promote a gay agenda into the school curriculum, and reading kindergartners homosexual themed stories without informing parents and giving them the option to opt out.

  62. KStret says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 11:25 AM:

    Spencer,
    "And once again, there is constitutional precedent for the decision."

    You are conflating the notion of a precedent with the constitutionality of the issue. If a precedent equated to meaning something was constitutional, the supreme court would not have ruled on most the them, would they?

    I did not make any strawman arguments. You did admit that polygamists have the same right to sue and make polygamy the law of the land as same sex couples do.

    If redefining marriage is a right, do people get to decide what the marriage laws are in the state they reside in? No, they don't. That would be a accurate representation of your position as well.

    Did you not argue that the 14th amendment had a justified discrimination clause? Yes, you did. The problem is that the 14th amendment states the opposite.

    Did you make any case for why redefining marriage is a fundamental right? No, you did not. You just assumed you were correct and equivocated around the issue.

    You do not get to say my opinion trumps your opinion, I think something is a good idea and a right, therefore it is.

  63. Payton Alexander says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 11:39 AM:

    KStret,

    Although I recognize that things like teaching children sexual techniques is inappropriate, as probably is encouraging them to experiment sexually, I don't see a problem with reading kindergarteners stories involving homosexuals any more than I see a problem with reading them stories about heterosexuals. As long as there's no inappropriate content, I don't see what's wrong with teaching people the facts.

    But I think you have misunderstood my main point. What I was saying is that hippie phenomena such as bath-houses and "free love" are no longer issues at the forefront of any mainline modern gay rights agenda. Gays in America these days, when it comes to politics, want to get married, have children, join the military, and get jobs. What could be more traditional than that?

    These goals, which are the absolute main goals of the gay rights movement today (you could even check wikipedia for this, though it's common knowledge), stand in stark contrast to those of the radicals and liberals in the 60's and 70's who wanted to alter the traditional family structure and abolish marriage, as Thomas claimed.

  64. Spencer says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 11:54 AM:

    Kstret,

    "You are conflating the notion of a precedent with the constitutionality of the issue. If a precedent equated to meaning something was constitutional, the supreme court would not have ruled on most the them, would they?"

    No, I am not. Constitutional precedent, you fail to understand, is precedent where the constitutionality of some issue has been decided by the Supreme Court. There has been Supreme Court cases in support of the proposition that failing to defend a law that the President views to be unconstitutional is legitimate. Now, maybe you don't care about those cases, or you don't care about the role of the Supreme Court in our democracy, but you need to deal with them. Too bad.

    "I did not make any strawman arguments."

    Yes, you most certainly did. I could very well point them out but there's no point: knowing you, you won't acknowledge them if you've been decisively refuted.

  65. robaylesbury says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 03:18 PM:

    Hello Kstret

    We can practice safe sex. I'm not aware we can practice safe cannibalism.

    As previously mentioned, our evolved brains enable us to transcend the hallmarks of our lowly ancestry.

    Sometimes.

    Regarding your statements on the Catholic church, it is true that the abused can go on to become abusers. Probably not a good idea for the priesthood to rape children in the first place, then.

  66. Anonymous says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 03:37 PM:

    http://www.zazzle.co.nz/practice_safe_cannibalism_dont_eat_brains_tshirt-235854970302918803

    Just in case.

  67. Thomas says on Mar 8, 2011 @ 10:21 PM:

    Payton Alexander,

    I provided evedence of the gay activists becoming conservitave. They seem to unite with liberal causes. I have some questions for you. On this thread I have qoted a sign that a protester was carring at a gay rally, a quote from Aldous Huxley, a link to protest video that was made last year, and a the Gay Liberation manifest that you said was already out of date. My questions are: 1. Can you provide quotes or links to gay activists sights to support the idea that the general mission of the Gay Liberation Manifesto has been abandoned? 2. What are your thoughts on the Huxley quote, the video, and the protest sign that I think is representitave of what I have seen at gay rallies.

  68. Rayburne says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 03:42 PM:

    By the way, Rob..to be honest about the unsanitory and unnatural nature of anal sex is not to define one by his/her sexual orientation (or "disorientation," as the case may be).

  69. KStret says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 04:33 PM:

    Payton,
    "I don't see a problem with reading kindergartners stories involving homosexuals any more than I see a problem with reading them stories about heterosexuals. As long as there's no inappropriate content, I don't see what's wrong with teaching people the facts."

    You might not have a problem reading children who are 5 years old homosexual stories but other parents might disagree with you. Other parents might see that as indoctrinating children to accept homosexuality as being normal and promoting values that they might disagree with.

    You can not dismiss the myriad of scandals that are associated with the homosexual political movement. They use sex-ed to push their radical agenda on children.

    "But I think you have misunderstood my main point. What I was saying is that hippie phenomena such as bath-houses and "free love" are no longer issues at the forefront of any mainline modern gay rights agenda......What could be more traditional than that?"

    This notion is also not true. There have been a few stories of bath houses opening up again. They have also changed bath houses to rest stops. I know of at least two rest stops in my state that they closed because they were being used as new bath houses.

    I have a friend who is a police officer who told me that there is a park in the town he works in that they also use as a gay meeting place. There are families and children that frequent the park and the police constantly have to monitor the park. Also, with internet message boards and chat rooms, they don't need to have a few specific bath houses any more.

    There is a population in the gay community called disease chasers, who actually want to get AIDS. The notion that the homosexual culture is the same as straight culture is false.

    "These goals, which are the absolute main goals of the gay rights movement today (you could even check wikipedia for this, though it's common knowledge)"

    Wikipedia is not an encyclopedia. It can be inaccurate and often get facts wrong. Anyone can write anything on it. Kids often use it to write reports for school and the information turns out to be wrong.

    What you have is the homosexual political movement attempting to portray themselves as being just like straight people and writing that on Wikipedia.

    There was a book about Nazi Germany I want to read. I wanted to check out the author and get some reviews of the book because I bought a book before on the subject and it turned out the author had some things in the book that never happened.

    Wikipedia said that the author I wanted to check out was discredited and named a historian that claimed that the author was a liar. After doing a search for the historian who supposedly discredited the author, I came across a curious problem.

    The author was a former Nazi who disavowed Hitler and the Nazi movement. All of the claims of him being discredited were coming from holocaust deniers. The holocaust deniers wrote what they wanted on Wikipedia and it is probably still there.

    If I took Wikipedia as being gospel, I would wrongly believe that the author had been discredited.

  70. ProfMTH says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 05:01 PM:

    Thomas wrote: "I want to know why emotional love should be the only criterion of marriage."

    It's not. Nor should it be. Read Jonathan Rauch's excellent piece entitled "For Better or Worse? The Case for Gay (and Straight) Marriage" (originally published back in 1996). Rauch argues that while love is a desirable element of marriage it cannot be the defining element. Society privileges marriage because marriage redounds to society's advantage in a variety of ways--most of which have absolutely nothing to do with the reproductive capacity of the spouses. So while you're at it, you might also want to ask why the capacity to procreate should be offered, as it almost always is, as the only or overarching criterion for marriage. Rauch's article is available here: http://www.jonathanrauch.com/jrauch_articles/2005/11/for_better_or_w.html

    Thomas wrote: "I want to know why gay activists have not made the compromise of having a legal domestic partnership that gives them the legal protections that they want."

    Many same-sex couples have entered into the legally recognized relationships short of marriage that have been made available to them in some jurisdictions, e.g., domestic partnerships and civil unions. However, they provide same-sex couples with dramatically fewer legal protections than marriage. While domestic partnership and civil union marked progress, they have proven to be little more than separate and not even remotely equal.

    Even in the few jurisdictions where same-sex couples have the legal right to marry, their marriages are not recognized at the federal level nor in most of the other states, which reduces the amount of legal benefits and protections for these legally married couples.

    Thomas wrote: "I want to know why, if this gay movment is so harmless to society, they have made videos like this http://thisismarriage.wordpress.com/2010/12/22/gay-activists-exploit-children-in-profanity-laced-violence-inciting-video/."

    Oh, please. Any excuse to deny same-sex couples the legal right to marry. What nonsense.

  71. KStret says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 05:07 PM:

    Spencer,
    "No, I am not. Constitutional precedent, you fail to understand, is precedent where the constitutionality of some issue has been decided by the Supreme Court. There has been Supreme Court cases in support of the proposition that failing to defend a law that the President views to be unconstitutional is legitimate"

    I understand constitutional precedents. The term is also used to justify the decision of the government. Because the Kennedy administration didn't defend a certian law, that means there is a precedent for the executive branch to follow the same line of thinking.

    In that context it is simply attempting to rationalize the decisions of the administration. The problem is they always go to the supreme court and each case is different.

    Just because the supreme court might rule in favor of one administration, doesn't mean that all administrations have the same mandate.

    Then there is the problem of supreme court decisions. There are justices that follow a constitutional philosophy and others who legislate from the bench. The supreme court is not infallible.

    As I said before the idea of constitutional precedents come from the progressive movement who want to slowly evolve away from the Constitution. Instead of looking at what the founders believe and if something is constitutional, they look at past decisions of the supreme court.

    It is not the job of the justice department to decide what is constitutional or what laws they want to enforce. It is the judicial branch of government that makes those decisions and it is the legislative branch's mandate to make the laws. That is the government that the founders created.

    "Yes, you most certainly did. I could very well point them out but there's no point: knowing you, you won't acknowledge them if you've been decisively refuted."

    I did not say one thing that wasn't true or misrepresent your opinion. You believe that redefining marriage is a right and that a judge can pass legislation from the bench to make redefining marriage a right and the law of the land.

    If a judge can do that, that means the people who do not believe that redefining marriage is a right opinion doesn't count. They do not get to decide what direction the culture goes.

    They have to accept and live in a culture where two women and two men can all marry each other. If they don't like that..... too bad. ...redefining marriage is a right. Why is it a right? because a minority of people say it is.

    It is also true that you argued that the 14th amendment had a justified discrimination clause or could be interpreted in that way. The 14th amendment states the exact opposite.

    By stating that, you were assuming that you are correct that homosexuals are being discriminated against because they can not redefine marriage. Your entire case is predicated on assuming that redefining marriage is a right. You then write your numbered argument and equivocate between positions.

  72. KStret says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 05:25 PM:

    Rob,
    "We can practice safe sex. I'm not aware we can practice safe cannibalism.As previously mentioned, our evolved brains enable us to transcend the hallmarks of our lowly ancestry."

    You could give cannibals medicine to get rid of the disease too. You are being totally inconstant in your thinking. You are cherry picking the parts of a naturalistic view point that you like and ignoring the rest.

    If natural law dictates that cannibalism is unnatural and shouldn't be practiced, you should apply the same line of thinking to a sex act that not only causes AIDS but other problems as well.

    People who practice the sex act have a much higher rate of colon cancer. There is another naturalistic reason for believing the sex act is not natural and shouldn't be practiced.

    "Regarding your statements on the Catholic church, it is true that the abused can go on to become abusers. Probably not a good idea for the priesthood to rape children in the first place, then."

    That is not what I said. While it is true people who are abused can turn into abusers, what I said was that people who have been abused often become homosexuals. They also have a high suicide rate just as the homosexual community does.

    If the abuse causes homosexuality, a politically correct philosophy that dictates not to judge and that homosexuality is normal is going to harm the abused person because they are not going to get the help they need.

  73. KStret says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 05:53 PM:

    ProfMTH,
    What you are essentially saying is that it isn't fair that same sex couples can not get married. Once again, the premise of your argument is predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a fundamental right.

    If redefining marriage is a right for same sex couples, redefining marriage has to be a right for everyone. Otherwise, you are discriminating against other groups just as you claim homosexuals are being discriminated against.

    You might find this shocking but some people disagree with you and do not believe that redefining marriage is a right.

    If my memory serves me correctly, the last time we had this debate, you refused to answer a simple question. Do polygamist have the same fundamental right to redefine marriage as homosexuals do?

    Why would you refuse to answer that question? If you answer no, you are being a hypocrite. If you answer yes, the society you want to force on people has several men and women marring each other and there is nothing that anyone who disagrees with you can do about it.

  74. robaylesbury says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 05:54 PM:

    Hello Kstret

    So many things in life that we do are, from a naturalistic
    viewpoint, unneccesary. We choose to do them. Once more, your logic chains lack a key constituent; logic.

    Concerning your claim that a high percentage of abuse victims become homosexual I look forward to the peer reviewed evidence you will shortly be providing to substantiate this claim.

  75. robaylesbury says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 06:00 PM:

    http://www.malesurvivor.org/myths.html

    I know, I know. He won't listen and he'll keep arguing.

  76. KStret says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 06:45 PM:

    Rob,
    "Once more, your logic chains lack a key constituent; logic."

    Unfortunately the philosophy you are using is political correctness. Political correctness's flaw that it is inherently illogical. You use naturalism to attempt to argue that homosexuality is normal, should be accepted, and embraced.

    You brought up it's occurrence in the animal kingdom but failed to give any context about it. It turns out that often times the homosexuality that you see in the Animal kingdom is similar to what you see in prison.

    You can not address the naturalistic argument that would dictate the the sex act that is wide spread in the homosexual community would be viewed as unnatural.

    You could not address the naturalistic view point that would dictate the homosexuality would be viewed as being abnormal because they lost the desire to reproduce.

    "Concerning your claim that a high percentage of abuse victims become homosexual I look forward to the peer reviewed evidence you will shortly be providing to substantiate this claim."

    There was victim after victim of sexual abuse by priests who were gay and or had problem with their sexual identity because of the abuse.

    That goes against politically correct orthodoxy, which of course you are going to have a problem with. Your solution to that is to post a biased web site that agrees with you and to ask for a peer reviewed study from me.

    I used to watch and listen to Howard Stern all the time in my youth. Part of the gimmick to the show is to frequently have porn starts as guests. The one thing that always came up was that the porn start were always victims of molestation when they were young.

    One porn star stated that she was molested but that wasn't what caused her mental harm. What the real problem was is that she liked being molested and coming to terms with that was hard for her.

    What really happened was she was being molested and the fear was causing her so much mental trauma that her mind convinced it's self that she really liked it to take away the pain.

    She is now perpetuating that pain on herself by her career choice and her behavior. Porn stars are also frequently lesbians and/ or bi-sexual.

    The same thing happens with the victims of catholic priests but it is politically incorrect to suggest that homosexuality could be caused by sexual abuse. That bias is rife in the psychological field. However, there are some that will go against political correct thought.

    On top of that, you are totally contradicting yourself with your idea that there is no objective morality. If there is no objective morality, homosexuals can not be discriminated against and you should not care either way. However, you practice logical gymnastics to make a case for why homosexuality should be embraced by society.

  77. robaylesbury says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 08:14 PM:

    To repeat;

    So many things in life that we do are, from a naturalistic
    viewpoint, unneccesary. We choose to do them.

    I pointed out the fact of homosexuality amongst other species to demonstrate we are not sole practitioners. As an evolved species we should not be surprised by this.

    I then also made clear that as an evolved species we had reached a point where we can explore and express sexuality in a wide variety of ways.

    You then proceeded to wax lyrical about Howard Stern, Porn Stars, and the Catholic church, whilst seamlessly disregarding the findings of abuse victims and claiming the entire realm of psychology was subject to an institutionalised bias.

    A normal day on planet Kstret.

  78. robaylesbury says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 08:48 PM:

    http://www.psychwww.com/psyrelig/plante.html

    Here's the key section.

    "Fifth, a high proportion of homosexual priests do not increase the risks of sexual abuse of minors by priests. Sexual orientation does not predict illegal sexual abuse of children and minors in general. Homosexual men are not more likely to engage in illegal sexual behaviors with children and adolescents than heterosexual men."

    The author of this article has worked extensively with the Catholic church on this issue.

  79. HenryA says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 09:01 PM:

    First off, defining marriage as between one man and one women is no more discriminatory against homosexuals then against polygamists. Why is it so much more fashionable to defend homosexuality? I never see indignant polygamists, or given the most of the pro same sex marriage people here are probably heterosexual, perhaps it would make a more fitting analogy to say that I never see non-polygamists complaining about the oppresion of polygamists.


    Furthermore, not extending the definition of marriage to same sex couples is no more prejudiced against a specific group of people then any other law imposed by society. Any man or women, regardless of sexual orientation is entitled to marry the exact same repsective group of people. To imply an inequality here, you must first divide each gender along the lines of sexual orientation, and then consider what individuals they might want to marry. At this point you can conclude that homosexual people would not want to benefit from the institution. However since sexual orientation is a mental state, and you must make that distiction to show prejudice, so too you could argue that laws prohibiting say theft or murder are prejudice against people that have mental predispostions towards those behaviors. So what.


    Society has always functioned by, among other things, creating definitions of words, regulations, laws, behavioral standards, etc. What right does the minority have to dictate to the majority how civil institutions that effect everyone must run? Parallels could obviously be drawn to racism, but homosexual people, unlike oppressed races in the past, are not being barred from activities open to the prefferred group, but simply not receiving (or recieving) the same treatment for different behaviors. To be clear this argument is not meant to show that same sex marriage should be banned, it is in response to what I believe accusations of prejudice rooted in fallacy, and also to point out that society appears to take the de facto right to rule on other "moral" issues, and other issues of definition, especially related to human behavior, and it would seem that should extend to this issue, or not exist at all.


    Lastly, given a naturalistic worldview, I honestly can't understand alledged moral objections. If we are simply evolved animals, how can one contend that we have some special duty to uphold your arbitrary ideas about fairness? Popular opinion should simply decide the matter. Or alternately it will play out as it will play out, and that will be that. But it would be difficult to contend that it could have played out "better", or that it was "wrong". Futhermore physicalism leads one to beleive that people have no control over there behavior. And while I have seen this used as a justification for same sex marriage (ie: people are born that way, no choice of theirs, so why interfere), it goes both ways; people opposed to the idea have no choice either. Nor did Stalin, or "good" people (fill in your heroes). So the moral issue becomes further moot. And the logic of the situation comes into question. Afterall, your mind is (would be?) optimized for survival, not truth. While your thoughts seem sound, they need only be chemically sound, not logically. So.... And how are you guys breaking up your paragraphs? I can't get line spacing to stay in for the preview!

  80. robaylesbury says on Mar 9, 2011 @ 09:51 PM:

    Hello HenryA. Thank you for your post.

    Given that God can and does flout moral absolutes with impunity, does this not imply that morality isn't absolute?

    Is that not a kind of moral relativism for the theist?

  81. John says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 08:37 AM:

    I fail to see why extending the legal rights, benefits, and responsibilities to homosexual couples is something to be worked against. And I say that as a Christian who believes that practicing homosexuality is sinful.

    At the end of the day, these homosexual couples are already living together in a way that is sinful, and are already in violation of God's law. It is their own form of "marriage" in everything but a legal definition.

    They either don't believe in my God, or don't believe practicing homosexuality is sinful. As Americans it is their right to do so.

    The only thing they do not have is the same legal rights, responsibilities, and benefits of heterosexual married couples. From what I can see on a legal/secular basis, there is no reason to differentiate between a heterosexual couple and a homosexual couple that wishes to get the legal benefits of "marriage".

    This posturing over a word, in my opinion, is utterly meaningless. These people are already LIVING in a way that displeases God, and it's legal for them to do so. So what's the point of denying them what are essentially secular/legal benefits?

  82. KStret says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 06:14 PM:

    Rob,
    "I pointed out the fact of homosexuality amongst other species to demonstrate we are not sole practitioners. As an evolved species we should not be surprised by this."

    Arguing that because there is some homosexuality in the animal kingdom means we should view homosexuality as normal is an invalid comparison.

    Again, the problem is that many times animals are not exclusively homosexual. Just because a male dog humps another male dog to show that it is dominant, doesn't mean that the dogs are gay in the same way that people are. When dogs do this, it isn't because they are attracted to the other dog. They want to show the other dog that they are higher in the pecking order.

    If there are no female penguins and the males turn to homosexuality, is that the same thing you see with human homosexuality? Maybe in a prison situation but when female penguins are available again, the males stop practicing homosexuality. That undercuts your entire argument.

    "So many things in life that we do are, from a naturalistic
    viewpoint, unneccesary. We choose to do them."

    You are basically admitting that you are cherry picking aspects of naturalism that you like and ignoring the parts of the philosophy that would go against homosexuality.

    The health aspects alone that occurs from the sex act that the majority of homosexuals engage in shows that we are not meant to preform that sex act. That is why AIDS is so prevalent in the homosexual community. AIDS is not the only problem. Bladder, urinary tract, and other bacterial infections can be caused by preforming the sex act.

    Your solution to this is to practice safe sex. However, then you run into the problem of the people who engage in this sex act frequently have a much higher rate of colon cancer than normal. This again is more evidence that shows the sex act to be unnatural.

    Then there is the problem of reproduction. If you are going to be constant in your thinking instead of cherry picking, homosexuality can not be viewed as normal from a naturalistic perspective.

    Being an atheist, you must know that Darwinism dictates that species must pass on their genes or reproduce to survive. Homosexuals have lost the evolutionary drive to reproduce. Therefore, Darwinism dictates that homosexuality must be an abnormality.

    Your rebuttal to this was to make a strawman argument that incorrectly portrayed my position that sex should only be for reproducing.

    You then admitted that you are cherry picking. In other words, you think homosexuality is a good thing and you are looking for any reason you can find to support it.

    You are also contradicting yourself with the idea that there are no objective morals with your position on homosexuality. Why would you care if homosexuals are being discriminated against? Why would you bend over backwards using totally inconsistent logic to rationalize why homosexuals should be universally be accepted, when there are no objective moral values?

    You are also contradicting yourself with the idea of Zeitgeist as well. People do not want same sex marriage. The spirit of the times goes against same sex marriage. When the spirit of the times is going the way you want, anyone who disagrees should just go with the flow. Yet, you do not go with the flow when majority of people do not agree with you.

  83. KStret says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 06:25 PM:

    Rob,
    Your rebuttal to my arguments on sexual abuse causing homosexuality in some cases, is to post links that agree with your perspective.

    You contradicted yourself again doings this. You stated that in some cases the abused can become the abusers, then you turned around and posted a web sites that states everything is a myth including the notion that the abused can become an abuser.

    It seems to me that once again you are violating the atheists code of reason. Shouldn't you look at both sides of the issue and then make up your mind? Instead, you look for links that agrees with your politically correct opinion and ignore everything else.

    On top of that, by disagreeing with me you are either calling me a liar or accusing the author of the book and the victims of lying.

    The book was about how the church hierarchy covered up and moved pedophile priests from parish to parish. The authors write for an elite liberal newspaper. The problem of the victims having homosexual tendencies was mentioned and did not play a large role in the book at all. The notion that the victims or the author have some anti-homosexual axe to grind is asinine.

    A friend of my family's child was molested by a 13 year old boy. Do you know what the psychiatrist told the parents? There is a strong tenancy to repress what happened to him and not to let that happen.

    If the child represses what happened, he could run into problems with his sexual identity later in his adolescents. In other words, if he repressed what happened to him he might have sexual feeling about the same sex when he hits his teen years.

    There is a youtube atheist who announced that he had been molested. For some reason he also announced that he went thew a period of being sexual attracted to children. Why you post a video stating that is beyond me. He also stated something to the effect of believing in God was worse than being molested, which is ridiculous and he pulled the videos.

    Homosexuality was listed as a mental disorder until the early 1970's. Do you know why it was removed? It wasn't because there was a universal agreement in the field of psychology that it was not a mental disorder.

    Homosexual activists realized that in order to implement their agenda, they needed to have homosexuality removed from the DSM.

    They had a group of homosexuals go into the field of psychology. After that was implemented, the political arm of the movement harassed and kept constant political pressure to remove homosexuality as a mental disorder. That is how it was removed.

    You have a political propaganda arm of homosexual activists. They want people to believe that they are just like straight people and their sexual preferences are hard wired in them from birth.

    What do you think they are going to do when a percentage of abuse victim are gay or have gay tenancies? They are going to fight that concept with everything they have.

    Do you remember when Anne Heche announced that she was a lesbian and she and Ellen Degeneres were in love? The narrative was Heche was living a lie and now she was free. She was now her true self that she was meant to be from birth. It's great that she came out of the closet because it helps other people do the same. She didn't have a choice, she was a lesbian from birth.

    A year or so after that, she was found wandering around incoherently. The relationship between her and Ellen that was going to last forever, ended.

    There was also a bizarre end to the story. Heche changed back to her original team, married a man, and had a kid. Wait..... I though she didn't have a choice and was now her true self? Human sexuality isn't as black and white as homosexual activists want it to be.

  84. KStret says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 06:31 PM:

    John,
    The argument is not that we should not allow homosexuals to get married because God doesn't like it. The premise of the argument to allow same sex marriage is predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a fundamental right.

    If redefining marriage is a right for same sex couples, redefining marriage has to be a right for everyone. Otherwise, you are discriminating against other groups just as they claim homosexuals are being discriminated against.

    You can not change the law for one group and deny another group the same right. In order for same sex marriage to be a right, the culture would also have to accept polygamy and other newly redefined definitions of marriage.

    By using that argument, what you are really saying is that the people who disagree with you do not have a choice of what is culturally accepted.

    The other trick same sex marriage proponents use, is to complain about the unfairness and flip the burden of whose responsibility it is to make argument onto the people who disagree with them. They will frequently say, "give me one good reason why same sex couples should not get married."

    I happen to think the flawed rationale to allow same sex marriage is a good reason but they are the ones who want to change marriage. It is their responsibly to make a case as to why marriage should be changed.

    I also wonder how they would feel if their 5 year old child came home from school and started recounting that their teacher taught them how great it is when a kid has 5 fathers and 5 mothers.

  85. robaylesbury says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 06:41 PM:

    Once again, I have made clear that as an evolved species we have reached a point where we can explore and express sexuality in a wide variety of ways. Many of these practices have no naturalistic value.

    Concerning your musings on morality, please feel free to illustrate how theistic morality fares any better in light of the fact that God appears to be fond of moral relativism.

  86. robaylesbury says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 06:56 PM:

    Incidentally, concerning homosexuality in animals such behaviors observed include courtship, affection, pair bonding, and parenting.

    Apparently any links I post will be biased, so I simply invite interested parties to undertake their own investigations.

  87. KStret says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 07:02 PM:

    Rob,
    The only thing you have made clear is that you are looking at this issue from an irrational politically correct stand point. Your rationale is totally inconstant.

    You like the idea of homosexuality being accepted and you will pick any reason you like for it and disregard the same line of thinking if it goes against it.

    As for morality, you claim that it is subjective and you are turned around breaking your back attempting logical gymnastics for an issue that shouldn't matter to you at all. If there are no objective moral values, why would you care one way or another? Everything is subjective.

  88. Spencer says on Mar 10, 2011 @ 09:00 PM:

    Kstret,

    "I understand constitutional precedents. The term is also used to justify the decision of the government. Because the Kennedy administration didn't defend a certian law, that means there is a precedent for the executive branch to follow the same line of thinking."

    Again, no you don't: all you've demonstrated is that that you don't know what you're talking about. Have you looked at those constitutional precedents? Have you read those opinions to see if they are well-reasoned and conform to the constitution? I would bet money that you have not. (You're also probably unaware of the fact that both Reagan and Bush did precisely the same thing.)

    Did you also know that even Scalia, the most conservative Justice on the court -- an "originalist" -- has supported the President's authority to decline to defend a law that he views as unconstitutional?

    " Thus, it was not enough simply to repose the power to execute the laws (or to appoint) in the President; it was also necessary to provide him with the means to resist legislative encroachment upon that power. The means selected were various, including a separate political constituency, to which he alone was responsible, and the power to veto encroaching laws, see Art. I, 7, or even to disregard them when they are unconstitutional.

    Freytag v. Commissioner, 501 U.S. 868 (1991)"


    "I did not say one thing that wasn't true or misrepresent your opinion."

    Patently false. You wrote: "redefining marriage is a right. Why is it a right? because a minority of people say it is."

    First of all, I have never argued that redefining marriage is a right -- that's pure caricature. Second, I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is."

    Hence, I these are just two examples where you misrepresent my views. Will you own up to this error? (No, you won't; hence I won't bother engaging you on this matter).

  89. robaylesbury says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 03:18 AM:

    Strange. He argues against moral relativism when his God is an active proponent of it. He also seeks to blame homosexuality for the Catholic church scandal when his Pope has never done so.

    Incidentally, the only gymnastics required of me are when I try to make sense of the disparate assemblage of words that compromise your average post.

    Changing gear, and by way of a thought experiment, would anybody here argue that celibacy is natural? Just thought I'd throw that out there.

  90. dullhammer says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 03:21 PM:

    Rob, I would argue that celibacy is as natural as self-control, which is also listed as one of the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit. So, one could also argue that celibacy is supernatural (or meta-natural for the spiritually squeamish).

    And since we're into changing gears a bit, I also have a question: What would you say is human nature? And what role does choice play in that nature?

  91. KStret says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 10:22 PM:

    Spencer,
    There is a precedent for forced sterilizations. In the Buck vs. Bell decision that was made in 1927, the supreme court affirmed that forced sterilizations were constitutional.

    Judging from your comments on this board, I suspect that you are feeble minded. Don't ask for a strict definition of feeble mindedness. It's really just a vague term to label someone, so they can be sterilized.

    I have reported you to the Eugenics record office. You and your entire family, will be grabbed against your will and sent to an institute for the feeble minded.

    After that, you will be provided with a defense and a judge that come from the Eugenics record office. You and your entire family will be sterilized as the judge never rules against the ERO. They might let you go or you could spend the rest of your lives in at the institute for the feeble minded.

    Wait a minute..... that sounds like it violates pretty much the entire constitution. Oh well, the supreme court said it was constitutional, there is a precedent so I guess it is constitutional.


    "First of all, I have never argued that redefining marriage is a right -- that's pure caricature."

    Yes you have. You think homosexuals are being discriminated against because they can not get married. If they are being discriminated against,redefining marriage must be a right. If redefining marriage isn't a right, you can not support judges legislating from the bench and overturning the will of the people when they pass a referendum defining marriage as one man and one women. You have also admitted that polygamy is a right too.

    "Second, I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is.""

    You have never said it in that exact way, but that is the argument you are making. You say same sex marriage is a right, homosexuals are being discriminated against, and you can not make a case for position.

    You assume that you are correct and you cited a interpretation of the 14 amendment that isn't there. That was the premise of your entire argument.

    You also attempted to try the turning the tables of responsibility trick and act as if the people who don't want same sex marriage have the burden to explain why it shouldn't be the law of the land.

    "Did you also know that even Scalia, the most conservative Justice on the court -- an "originalist" -- has supported the President's authority to decline to defend a law that he views as unconstitutional? "

    As I said before, each case is different. Just because they ruled in favor of the executive branch in one case doesn't mean that all presidents have the same right.

    Just because they rule in favor of the executive branch in one case doesn't mean that they are following the constitution. Unless you agree that forced sterilizations are constitutional?

    What the Constitution says and what the founders thought is the question. The question is not what the supreme court says.

  92. Spencer says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 10:49 PM:

    Kstret,

    Again, all you've demonstrated is that that you don't know what you're talking about. Have you looked at those constitutional precedents? Have you read those opinions to see if they are well-reasoned and conform to the constitution? I would bet money that you have not. (You're also probably unaware of the fact that both Reagan and Bush did [i[precisely[/i] the same thing.)

    "As I said before, each case is different."

    The fact that each case is different doesn't mean each case is relevantly different, or that the rule in one case doesn't apply to a different - yet sufficiently similar - case.

    "
    Just because they ruled in favor of the executive branch in one case doesn't mean that all presidents have the same right."

    No one said or implied otherwise.

    "Yes you have. You think homosexuals are being discriminated against because they can not get married. If they are being discriminated against,redefining marriage must be a right. "

    This is why debate with you is impossible: misrepresentation is your modus operandi. The fact that homosexuals are discriminated against doesn't imply that "redefining marriage must be a right" - a blatant nonsequitur.

    I never agreed that marriage is defined as a union that involves, necessarily, one man and one woman. I never accepted this "definition" of marriage. Hence, it follows that, on my view, marriage between same-sex couples doesn't constitute a "redefinition" of marriage.

    "You have never said it in that exact way, but that is the argument you are making. You say same sex marriage is a right, homosexuals are being discriminated against, and you can not make a case for position. "

    Here, you are just outright lying. I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is." Go through my posts: I challenge you to find that premise (or anything like it) in any of my arguments. I HAVE made the case for my position, and the fact that you disagree with it is irrelevant: disagreement doesn't give you the right to blatantly ascribe to me a strawman I never endorsed.

    Will you retract your claim that I think redefining marriage is a right? Will retract your claim that I've argued that same sex-marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is?" If you're honest debator, you would. I won't hold my breath.

  93. KStret says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 10:52 PM:

    Rob,
    "Strange. He argues against moral relativism when his God is an active proponent of it."

    So.... you think of yourself on the same level as God then? What argument do I make every time you say something like this?

    If God killed Hitler before he attempted to take over the world and committed genocide, what would you say? You would say, "hey... that's not fair. God killed a starving artist and he never did anything to anyone." But he would have, and God has that knowledge and you don't. You are not on the same level as God, are you? If you are not on the same level, you can not judge God's actions or decisions, can you?

    That is really off the subject. The subject was really the inconstancy of your thinking. My question to you (which you have refused to answer) is if all morals are relative why do you care at all about homosexuals? Everything is relative. Accepting or not accepting homosexuality should be the same to you if morals are all relative. Why do you care?

    My second question, is about your remark on humans being as an evolved species and accepting homosexuality. Are you saying that a society that accepts and embraces homosexuality is "more evolved" than one that doesn't?

    If you are saying that you are contradicting yourself again. You would be replacing the phrase objectively good with "more evolved" and basically saying the same thing. It is a semantics game to get around the problem of objective moral values.

    "He also seeks to blame homosexuality for the Catholic church scandal when his Pope has never done so."

    First of all, I am not catholic and the church covered up the abuse. In my opinion what the church hierarchy did was flat out evil.

    Secondly, you are making another strawman argument. The only thing I was saying is that homosexuality can be a mental problem that is caused by abuse.

    You yourself argued, that the abused can become abusers. You then contradicted yourself by posting a propaganda website that said everything is a myth. Did you change you mind? Does being abused create pedophiles or do they not have a choice and are born that way?

    Do you think porn stars or strippers are born that way or do they come from dysfunctional abusive homes?

    You are not going to answer any of these questions because they undercut politically correct doctrine.

    As I said before my point was just that human sexuality isn't as black and white as homosexual activists want it to be and they will fight any notion that goes against the propaganda that they are attempting to sell to the public.

  94. Spencer says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 10:56 PM:

    Kstret,

    I refuse to engage with you further until you do two things: 1) retract your false claim that I think redefining marriage is a right, and 2) retract your false claim that I made the argument that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is."

    Earlier, you stated: "I did not say one thing that wasn't true or misrepresent your opinion."

    I provided two examples where you did just that. Will you own up to your error? Or will you continue to insist on misrepresenting my opinion?

  95. KStret says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 11:07 PM:

    Spencer,
    "Again, all you've demonstrated is that that you don't know what you're talking about. Have you looked at those constitutional precedents?"

    You must agree that forced sterilization is constitutional then because there is a precedent for it? What did I say about precedents?

    "The fact that homosexuals are discriminated against doesn't imply that "redefining marriage must be a right" - a blatant nonsequitur. "

    Yes it does. You can not discriminate against people. Why are they being discriminated against? Because they can't redefine marriage. Redefining marriage has to be a right. You can not have a judge say that the people can not define marriage as one man and on woman, if redefining marriage isn't a right for everyone.

    You even stated that polygamists have the same "RIGHT" that homosexuals do and should be able to go into a court and have an activist judge make polygamy the law of the land too.

    "Here, you are just outright lying. I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is.""

    I have already addressed this point. Go back and read what I said.

    "I HAVE made the case for my position, and the fact that you disagree with it is irrelevant: disagreement doesn't give you the right to blatantly ascribe to me a strawman I never endorsed."

    Your case was a numbered argument that all assumed homosexuals were being discriminated against coupled with a total misinterpretation of the 14th amendment. You also attempted the flip the responsibility of explanation trick.

    You then equivocated between each argument so you couldn't be nailed down to one position, just like you did for the 6 month long abortion debate.

  96. Spencer says on Mar 11, 2011 @ 11:16 PM:

    Kstret,

    "Yes it does. You can not discriminate against people. Why are they being discriminated against? Because they can't redefine marriage. "

    This has never been my argument. Shall I say it again: this has never been my argument. You will not find "because they can't redefine marriage" as a premise in my argument.

    "I have already addressed this point. Go back and read what I said."

    You said: "You have never said it in that exact way, but that is the argument you are making." In other words, you stand by your original strawman: that I've argued for same-sex marriage from the premise that "minority of people say" it should be allowed. Once again, you are just outright lying. I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is."

    Will you retract your claim that I think redefining marriage is a right? Will retract your claim that I've argued that same sex-marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is?"

  97. KStret says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 12:02 AM:

    Spencer,
    You did not address one thing I said. A judge can not overturn something just because they feel like it or don't like a provision. There has to be a reason.

    When a state passes a measure that marriage is defined as one man and one woman, and a judge overturns it, he has to give legal justification for the decision.

    The legal justification that they use is that you can not restrict marriage to just one man and one woman. In other words, it is discriminating against homosexuals not to allow them to get married. Thus, Same sex marriage is a right.

    You can not change the law for one group and deny another group the same right. In order for same sex marriage to be a right, the culture would also have to accept polygamy and other newly redefined definitions of marriage. You agreed with that. You think polygamist can go to court and make polygamy the law of the land too.

    If redefining marriage is a right for same sex couples, redefining marriage has to be a right for everyone. Otherwise, you are discriminating against other groups just as they claim homosexuals are being discriminated against. That is what the 14th amendment really says. It dictates equal protection under the law. The law applies to everyone equally.


    You tried to flip this on it head, and attempted to argue (while assuming that same sex marriage is a right), that the state that passes a law that defines marriage as one man and one woman has the burden to argue why it's ok to discriminate against homosexuals.

    You claimed that there was some kind of justified discrimination clause that could be found in the 14th amendment. Unfortunately for you, that is not in the 14th amendment and if you want to change the marriage laws it is your responsibility to argue why they should be changed.

    A judge can not throw out a law just because they do not like it and there is no justified discrimination clause or anything like it. A state does not have the burden to explain why they passed a law. A judge should only rule if a law if constitutional or not.

    In order to agree that a judge can overturn a law that states that marriage is defined between one man and one woman, you have to agree with the judge that redefining marriage is a right for homosexuals. If redefining marriage is a right for homosexuals, under the 14th amendment everyone has the right to redefine marriage.

    You can attempt to play games with semantics and equivocate all you want. That is what you do.

    You even attempted to argue that even though marriage has had the same definition for over 200 years and same sex marriage has never been done in the history of the country, that you were not changing the definition of marriage. How disingenuous is that?

    I also asked you the question if polygamists have the same right as homosexuals do about 1000 times before you actually answered the question. You were forced to answer yes.

    The case to allow same sex marriage has to be predicated on redefining marriage being a right. If it's not, you can not go to court and have a judge legislate it into law.

    If it's not a right, you have to get your legislature to pass it or put it on a ballot referendum. The problem is we both know, it will not pass that way because people do not want it. Therefore, redefining marriage has to be a right.

    Why is it a right? Because a small minority of people say it is. If redefining marriage is a right, do I have a choice in the direction of the culture? No I don't. My opinion doesn't count.

  98. KStret says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 12:02 AM:

    Spencer,
    You did not address one thing I said. A judge can not overturn something just because they feel like it or don't like a provision. There has to be a reason.

    When a state passes a measure that marriage is defined as one man and one woman, and a judge overturns it, he has to give legal justification for the decision.

    The legal justification that they use is that you can not restrict marriage to just one man and one woman. In other words, it is discriminating against homosexuals not to allow them to get married. Thus, Same sex marriage is a right.

    You can not change the law for one group and deny another group the same right. In order for same sex marriage to be a right, the culture would also have to accept polygamy and other newly redefined definitions of marriage. You agreed with that. You think polygamist can go to court and make polygamy the law of the land too.

    If redefining marriage is a right for same sex couples, redefining marriage has to be a right for everyone. Otherwise, you are discriminating against other groups just as they claim homosexuals are being discriminated against. That is what the 14th amendment really says. It dictates equal protection under the law. The law applies to everyone equally.


    You tried to flip this on it head, and attempted to argue (while assuming that same sex marriage is a right), that the state that passes a law that defines marriage as one man and one woman has the burden to argue why it's ok to discriminate against homosexuals.

    You claimed that there was some kind of justified discrimination clause that could be found in the 14th amendment. Unfortunately for you, that is not in the 14th amendment and if you want to change the marriage laws it is your responsibility to argue why they should be changed.

    A judge can not throw out a law just because they do not like it and there is no justified discrimination clause or anything like it. A state does not have the burden to explain why they passed a law. A judge should only rule if a law if constitutional or not.

    In order to agree that a judge can overturn a law that states that marriage is defined between one man and one woman, you have to agree with the judge that redefining marriage is a right for homosexuals. If redefining marriage is a right for homosexuals, under the 14th amendment everyone has the right to redefine marriage.

    You can attempt to play games with semantics and equivocate all you want. That is what you do.

    You even attempted to argue that even though marriage has had the same definition for over 200 years and same sex marriage has never been done in the history of the country, that you were not changing the definition of marriage. How disingenuous is that?

    I also asked you the question if polygamists have the same right as homosexuals do about 1000 times before you actually answered the question. You were forced to answer yes.

    The case to allow same sex marriage has to be predicated on redefining marriage being a right. If it's not, you can not go to court and have a judge legislate it into law.

    If it's not a right, you have to get your legislature to pass it or put it on a ballot referendum. The problem is we both know, it will not pass that way because people do not want it. Therefore, redefining marriage has to be a right.

    Why is it a right? Because a small minority of people say it is. If redefining marriage is a right, do I have a choice in the direction of the culture? No I don't. My opinion doesn't count.

  99. Spencer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 12:25 AM:

    Kstret,

    "You did not address one thing I said."

    Another obvious lie. I will quote verbatim from my previous post. You wrote:

    ------------
    Yes it does. You can not discriminate against people. Why are they being discriminated against? Because they can't redefine marriage.
    ------------

    My response:

    -----------
    This has never been my argument. Shall I say it again: this has never been my argument. You will not find "because they can't redefine marriage" as a premise in my argument.
    -----------

    You wrote:

    -------------
    "I have already addressed this point. Go back and read what I said."

    -------------

    My response:

    ------------
    You said: "You have never said it in that exact way, but that is the argument you are making." In other words, you stand by your original strawman: that I've argued for same-sex marriage from the premise that "minority of people say" it should be allowed. Once again, you are just outright lying. I never argued that same-sex marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is."

    Will you retract your claim that I think redefining marriage is a right? Will retract your claim that I've argued that same sex-marriage should be allowed "because a minority of people say it is?"
    -----------------

    "In other words, it is discriminating against homosexuals not to allow them to get married. Thus, Same sex marriage is a right."

    None of this implies that I think "redefining marriage is a right."

    "In order for same sex marriage to be a right, the culture would also have to accept polygamy and other newly redefined definitions of marriage. You agreed with that. You think polygamist can go to court and make polygamy the law of the land too."

    Not exactly what I said. I accept that polygamy ought to be legal, but this doesn't follow merely from the fact that same-sex marriage ought to be legal. Rather, it would follow from the fact that the anti-polygamy position is unjustified. However, the fact that the anti-same-sex marriage position is unjustified doesn't necessarily imply that the anti-polygamy position is unjustified (the latter may be true, but it doesn't follow from the former). Hence, I'm not committed to polygamy just because I accept same-sex marriage.

    "If redefining marriage is a right for same sex couples,"

    Once again, it is not my position that I think "redefining marriage is a right."

    Kstret, you've been caught making (at least) 3 false statements.

    1) In your previous post, you falsely claimed that I "did not address one thing I said." Will you retract your false statement?

    2) You also maintain the falsehood that "redefining marriage is a right" is part of my argument. Will you retract your false statement?

    3) You also falsely stated that I've argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it is?" Will you retract your false statement?

  100. KStret says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 01:21 AM:

    Spencer,
    You are attempting to flip the burden of explanation on it's head. It doesn't matter if you think it is justified or unjustified. That is not giving any legal reason for allowing sex marriage.

    If you simply think it's unjustified, you should be perfectly fine with states passing laws that define marriage between one man and one woman.

    You should get the legislature in the state you live in to pass a same sex marriage law or put a referendum on a ballot. If people reject that, you shouldn't have a problem with it.

    However, You agree that a judge can implement sex marriage by judicial fiat, don't you? You do not believe the people of a state have a right to define marriage how they want, do you?

    A judge can not say, "give me one good reason why we shouldn't allow same sex marriage" and then dismiss all the reasons. That is essentially what you are saying.

    All you are doing by arguing that, is assuming you are correct that homosexuals are being discriminated against and playing the flip the burden of explanation trick. Neither hold any water legally. If you can not give legal justification, you can not have a judge pass same sex marriage laws. A judge can only dismiss a law if it is unconstitutional or discriminatory. He can not say that it is unjustified.

    Again, there is no justified discrimination clause and states do not have a burden of explanation as to why they passed a law. The only way you can get a judge to pass same sex marriage is if same sex marriage is a right. That is the only way your position works.

    You are going to keep playing games with semantics, come up with a three or four step argument that assumes your position is correct, dismisses what I say with one word, and equivalence between positions so you can cry strawman.

    You can not accuse me of being disingenuous after what you pulled in the abortion debate. You were equivocating between two positions and if I based my comments on one position, you would switch back to the other and accuse me of making a strawman argument.

    I then based my responses on what your answer was and you couldn't equivocate anymore. You were stuck between two positions that you didn't like.

    Did you answer a simple question? No, you ran away without answering. Why? Because you were forced into one position. You did the exact same thing on our previous debate on this issue.

  101. KStret says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 01:29 AM:

    Spencer,
    "Not exactly what I said. I accept that polygamy ought to be legal, but this doesn't follow merely from the fact that same-sex marriage ought to be legal"

    No Spencer, you said polygamists have the same "RIGHT" that homosexuals do to go to court and have a judge implement polygamy just as you think they should with same sex marriage. That means redefining marriage is a RIGHT.

    The end result is a society that marriage means whatever any one wants it to mean. One man can marry another and one man could marry 5 men and 5 women.

    The only way you can have a judge pass same sex marriage is if redefining marriage is a right.

  102. Spencer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 01:40 AM:

    Kstret,

    I made myself clear that I would not engage further with you until I see a retraction regarding the two false statements you made (actually, there were more than two, but I'll settle for two). You stated that you "did not say one thing that wasn't true or misrepresent your opinion." However, I provided two examples where you did just that.

    1). You maintain the falsehood that "redefining marriage is a right" is part of my argument. Will you retract your false statement?

    2). You also falsely stated that I've argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it is?" Will you retract your false statement?

  103. Thomas says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:

    Spencer,
    The part of my argument that you challenged is that the social function of marriage is to reproduce. The history of western society supports this. If you want to argue for some other definition of marriage then you need to give that definition. Then you need to give an argument for why that definition should be accepted.

    I know that my argument for including infertile couples in marriage is invalid. I should have noted that this was more a line of thought than an argument. Even if my reasoning fails here it does not prove that my argument for marriage is false. Here is why I do not think that I am being inconsistent. Most infertile couples find out that they are infertile after they are married. To find out if a couple is not fertile would require medical tests. This is an invasion of privacy. However it is not an invasion of privacy to ask what sex someone is. In fact, you know what sex someone is (with a few exceptions) just by looking at them. I could say more here but since neither of us wants a theocracy I am trying not to make my arguments religious in nature.

  104. Anonymous says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 03:15 AM:

    Kstret, you ask me if I claim the same level of knowledge as God. No. I claim more by virtue of the fact that I exist. When I refer to God I do so in the context of God as a man made construct.

    Why should I care about any issue? Because I choose to? Why should I choose to? Because I can.

    Your question concerning whether persons whom accept homosexuality are more evolved is peculiar, not least due to the fact that evolution is a process that requires deep time and slow incremental change. To answer your question I would ask you to reflect on those countries where the practice of homosexuality is illegal. El Salvador, some middle east and African nations. You will note that many of these nations rank depressingly low on indexes of social development and adherence to human rights. So from a cultural and moral standpoint I emphatically answer yes; nations that support homosexual relationships and afford them the same status in law appear to be more culturally advanced.

  105. Thomas says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 04:41 AM:

    ProMTH,

    We agree that emotional love is not the only criteria for marriage. It is nice to reach an occasional point of agreement. I also agree that reproduction is not the only interest society has in marriage. If I gave that impression I did not intend to. The reason I focus on reproduction is that it is this area that I think same sex relationships are not equal to heterosexual relationships. I did not have time to read the article yet. I will try to get to it soon.

    You have stated that the status of domestic partnerships is separate and not equal. I do not think that these relationships are equal. Perhaps there are some more benefits that we can give opposite sex couples, but do we have to redefine the institution of marriage to do that?

    My reason for posting the video, the Huxley quote, the quote from the protesters sign, and the Gay Liberation Manifesto is that I am arguing that the goal of the gay rights movement is to fundamentally change western society. If you support this kind of change then you need to make a case for why we need to make that change. If you think that these quotes misrepresent the intentions of the gay rights movement then I want to know what their intentions are and why I should support them.

  106. robaylesbury says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 04:44 AM:

    Last post was mine.

    Kstret,

    How does acknowledging that some abuse victims become abusers contradict a post that observes that research carried out by a psychologist indicates no corrolation between homosexuality and the Catholic scandal? I'm utterly perplexed?

    You then ask if I think porn stars or strippers are born that way or do they come from dysfunctional abusive homes? I expect they choose to join the industry for a whole variety of reasons.

    You then observe "that human sexuality isn't as black and white as homosexual activists want it to be and they will fight any notion that goes against the propaganda that they are attempting to sell to the public."

    I rather think that it is people such as yourself that are seeking to define sexuality in black and white terms.

    In summary, it was most your most bizarre post yet. A disparate pulling together of anecdotes selected in order to fit the ideological certainties inside your head.

    Risible stuff. Up your game.

  107. robaylesbury says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 04:53 AM:

    Hello Dullhamer. I think the question you ask regarding human nature is superb, and confess that any answer I ventured would be inadequate.

    I also think your thoughts on celibacy were intriguing and not something I had really considered before, so thank you.

    I wonder, however, whether the challenges of enforced celibacy might have played a part in the warping process that turns priests into rapists?

  108. Anonymous says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 05:07 AM:

    Kstret, you ask me if I claim the same level of knowledge as God. No. I claim more by virtue of the fact that I exist. When I refer to God I do so in the context of God as a man made construct.

    Why should I care about any issue? Because I choose to? Why should I choose to? Because I can.

    Your question concerning whether persons whom accept homosexuality are more evolved is peculiar, not least due to the fact that evolution is a process that requires deep time and slow incremental change. To answer your question I would ask you to reflect on those countries where the practice of homosexuality is illegal. El Salvador, some middle east and African nations. You will note that many of these nations rank depressingly low on indexes of social development and adherence to human rights. So from a cultural and moral standpoint I emphatically answer yes; nations that support homosexual relationships and afford them the same status in law appear to be more culturally advanced.

  109. robaylesbury says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 05:44 AM:

    I think I've just figured out why the last comment appears to have turned up twice on this thread. Probably my fault for using an Ipad and my PC at the same time. Still not entirely sure how it happened though!

  110. Spencer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:08 AM:

    Thomas,

    "The part of my argument that you challenged is that the social function of marriage is to reproduce. The history of western society supports this."

    Even if the "social function" of marriage is to reproduce (which I deny), it doesn't follow that this function is in any way a legal requirement for marriage. The ability to reproduce has never been a prerequisite for marriage. Why do you want to impose this prerequisite now?

    "Even if my reasoning fails here it does not prove that my argument for marriage is false."

    So what IS your argument for restricting marriage to heterosexual couples?

    "Here is why I do not think that I am being inconsistent. Most infertile couples find out that they are infertile after they are married. To find out if a couple is not fertile would require medical tests. This is an invasion of privacy. "

    This is a curious argument with several problems.

    1). True, medical tests are invasive, but given the overriding importance of reproduction in marriage, why shouldn't those tests be conducted on your view? Given your position, they should. The fact that medical tests would be invasive doesn't explain why they shouldn't be done in order to ensure that the "social function" of marriage can be carried out.

    2) Suppose a fertile couple gets married and they make known their intentions never to reproduce. They are staunchly adamant about not reproducing. If reproduction is the "social function" of marriage, and this married couple will never perform that social function, will you then force this couple to dissolve their marriage? If not, why not? It would seem that your position would require this unacceptable result.

    3) It's not the case that we would always have to perform medical tests to figure out if a couple is infertile. The couple could be 85 years old. A person's medical history may already reveal that he or she is infertile. Would you prevent such persons from getting married? You probably wouldn't - hence undermining your claim that the "ability to produce" is a valid criterion for marriage.

  111. Thomas says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 09:14 PM:

    Spencer,

    You tend to only tear down arguments here. That is the easy part of debate. Why should we change the definition of marriage?

  112. Spencer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 09:44 PM:

    Thomas,

    Marriages between same-sex couples are already legally recognized in several states. Pursuant to the Full Faith and Credit Clause and Fourteenth Amendment, why shouldn't those marriages be recognized in every other state? DOMA prevents the recognition of marriages that are already legally recognized. Why do you support such discrimination?

  113. Thomas says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 10:57 PM:

    Spencer,

    There you go again. What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages?

    DOMA does not violate the fourteenth amendment. The fourteenth amendment protects "life, liberty, and property" What DOMA restricts is tax benefits. Any court decision that interprets this as pertaining to marriage would go against the original intent of the amendment.

    Now carry your burden and answer my questions.

  114. Spencer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:06 PM:

    Thomas,

    Once again, DOMA prevents the recognition of marriages that are already legally recognized, thereby potentially violating both the Full Faith and Credit Clause and Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Your burden is to show that the discrimination is justified. Can you?

  115. dullhammer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:41 PM:

    Rob said: "I wonder, however, whether the challenges of enforced celibacy might have played a part in the warping process that turns priests into rapists?"
    ----------


    If that were the case, wouldn't we be seeing the "challenges of enforced celibacy" warping those not-so-celibate priests into both homosexual AND heterosexual rapists? Actually, with the vast majority being the latter. The only consistent evidence of a "warping process" seems to be the presence of priests with same-sex attraction and the blind oversight of cardinals desperate for priests.

  116. dullhammer says on Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:57 PM:

    And sort of back on the matter of fundamentally changing the definition of Marriage I ask:

    What would happen if we simply changed the definition of "celibacy" to include people who regularly engage a partner in sexual intercourse"? Wouldn't that be the most fair thing to do for people who just don't have the nature to control themselves? Just think of the problems it would solve? Catholic Priests would be able to keep their vows either by abstaining from sex or by engaging in sex-- either way. Just think what this would do to revitalize the concept of virginity! Or even the proliferation of virgin births!!! And to those who complain that this would threaten the very meaning of "celibacy" you could assure them that there would be nothing to prevent them from abstaining just like before.
    /end sarcasm

  117. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 12:02 AM:

    Spencer,

    Your own language tells it all. The violation is potential. I have already stated that aplying the fourteenth amendment to this issue violates the original intent of the fourteenth amentdment. This amendment was about achieving racial and sexual equality. It has nothing to do with the equality of relationships.

    Because you have not answered my questions I will ask again. What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages? You dodged questions in the Go Vote thread and you are dodging them now. I will continue to ask. Whether or not you engage in a real exchange of ideas is up to you.

  118. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 12:19 AM:

    Thomas,

    "I have already stated that aplying the fourteenth amendment to this issue violates the original intent of the fourteenth amentdment. This amendment was about achieving racial and sexual equality. It has nothing to do with the equality of relationships. "

    Equal Protection provides that no State shall "deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." The language is written in general terms: unjustified discrimination of all sorts is unconstitutional. Here, we have unjustified discrimination against legally married couples. How do you justify this discrimination? Moreover, what do you with the Full Faith and Credit Clause?

    "Because you have not answered my questions I will ask again. "

    Your questions are an attempt to improperly shift the burden. The issue under debate is NOT whether same-sex marriage ought to be legal. The issue is: why should marriage-based benefits be denied to same-sex couples who are legally married?

  119. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 12:41 AM:

    Spencer,

    Each view of anything has the burden to prove its case. I have the burden to make the case for keeping the current law. You have the burden to show why the law should be changed. In order to change the law you must state what we are going to change the law to. I have been making my case, you have not. Quit being evasive.

    Because you have not answered my questions I will ask again. What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages? You dodged questions in the Go Vote thread and you are dodging them now. I will continue to ask. Whether or not you engage in a real exchange of ideas is up to you.

  120. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 12:55 AM:

    Thomas,

    I've explained why your questions are not germane here. The issue under debate is NOT whether same-sex marriage ought to be legal. The issue is: why should marriage-based benefits be denied to same-sex couples who are already legally married?

    DOMA is discriminatory on its face: it prevents legally married couples from receiving marriage-based benefits solely because they are homosexuals. Why are you in favor of this? Can you justify giving marriage-based benefits to legally married opposite-sex couples but not to legally married same-sex couples? What do you have against legally married same-sex couples? Why shouldn't they be entitled to the same benefits that legally married opposite-sex couples are entitled to under our laws?

    It's clear you want to run away from these questions. All you've done is attempt to improperly shift the burden.

  121. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 01:11 AM:

    Spencer,

    I have answered your questions in earlier posts. Go and read them. I know you do not agree with my arguments and I am willing to go further in answering them if you will make a case for you position. I have already made a case for my position; you have not even defined your position.

    The definition of marriage is at stake in this debate. To say that a same sex couple is married is to presuppose a definition of marriage that includes same sex couples. If the federal government is to change its current definition of marriage it must first define what couples qualify for the benefits. If you do not you have an institution that is undefined.

    According to federal law same sex couples are not married. Why should that change?

    Because you have not answered my questions I will ask again. What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages? You dodged questions in the Go Vote thread and you are dodging them now. I will continue to ask. Whether or not you engage in a real exchange of ideas is up to you.

  122. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 01:24 AM:

    Thomas,

    "I have answered your questions in earlier posts. "

    No, you didn't. I have read and responded to every one of your posts. Where have you answered my questions?

    "The definition of marriage is at stake in this debate."

    No, it is not. In some states, same-sex couples can get married -- this is an undeniable fact. The issue here is whether denying those couples marriage-based benefits is constitutional. Again I ask: Why are you in favor of this? Can you justify giving marriage-based benefits to legally married opposite-sex couples but not to legally married same-sex couples? What do you have against legally married same-sex couples? Why shouldn't they be entitled to the same benefits that legally married opposite-sex couples are entitled to under our laws?

    "If the federal government is to change its current definition of marriage it must first define what couples qualify for the benefits. "

    Again, the issue isn't about changing marriage to include same-sex couples. Same-sex couples can already get married. The issue here is why shouldn't those legally married couples qualify for marriage-based benefits in other states?

    "change?

    "Because you have not answered my questions I will ask again."

    Because you don't understand my response, I will state it again. Your questions are not germane here. The issue under debate is NOT whether same-sex marriage ought to be legal. The issue is: why should marriage-based benefits be denied to same-sex couples who are already legally married?

  123. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:03 AM:

    Spencer,

    Notice what you are doing here. The legal definition given by the federal government is that marriage is a union between one man and one woman. Because a few other states have different legal definitions, you states that because these marriages are legally recognized by the federal government that the federal government should recognize those marriages. You then states that the definition of marriage is not at stake here. But the federal government must have a criteria determine whether a couple is qualified for these benefits. What is this criterion? It requires defining what marriage is. If the federal government cannot define marriage, then on what grounds are these benefits given to the couples? In order to give benefits to married couples the federal government must define marriage.

    You also do not think I understand his response. Not so. I disagree with your response. The debate is whether or not the federal government must legally recognize same sex couples as married. This means legalizing marriage at the federal level. This does affect the state level. Right now the State of Texas does not have to legally recognize same sex couples as married. If the federal government changes its definition of marriage then will Texas be able to be sued by a same sex couple for not recognizing their right to marry? Yes. You attribute this change as being necessary to keep the 14th amendment. Texas must also keep the 14th amendment. (I have already said why I disagree with your interpretation)

    In order to change the definition of an institution, change a law, change someone’s mind, a negative case must be made against what will be changed. A positive case must be given for what it will be changed to. Does the federal government have to recognize polygamy? (I think you have answered this fore someone else) Is the federal government violating the 14th amendment by denying the same benefits to singles?

  124. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM:

    The 14th amendment states: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

    By not recognising gay couples as married the federal government is not denying anyone life, liberty, or property. Any gay man can marry any woman that I can marry. In order for the government to give any marriage benefits it must define what a marriage is. This definition must apply to persons equally. The federal government is not bound by state laws. Because the federal government is not bound by state laws it does not have to recognise state marriages. The federal government has defined marriage as the union of one man and one woman. By definition gay couples are not married under federal law.

    The reason for the 14th amendment is, “to ensure that all former slaves were granted automatic United States citizenship, and that they would have all the rights and privileges as any other citizen.” http://www.usconstitution.net/constamnotes.html#Am14 The only difference between the races is the color of the pigmentation in the skin. Men and women have substantial differences that indicate that the relationship between homosexual couples is not equivalent to the relationship between heterosexual couples. For these reasons the 14th amendment is not aplicable to the institution of marriage. It was never intended to be applied this way.

    Because of my previous arguments I ask the following questions: What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages?

  125. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 10:39 AM:

    Thomas,

    Obviously, I'm not getting through to you - all you've done is ignore the issue at hand and divert attention. You refuse to engage concerns regarding DOMA's discriminatory effects. Whether I think same-sex marriage ought to be legal (I do) is irrelevant here: in some states, such marriages ARE legal. If they're legal, why shouldn't those marriages receive the same benefits and protections as marriages between opposite-sex couples? The denial undoubtedly harms. Why are you in favor of such harmful treatment against homosexuals?

    "By not recognising gay couples as married the federal government is not denying anyone life, liberty, or property"

    It would deny legally married gay couples the "equal protection of laws." Under DOMA, legally married opposite-sex couples receive marriage-based benefits and protections, but legally married same-sex couples do not. Hence DOMA does not afford legally married same-sex couples the same "equal protection" as legally married opposite-sex couples.

    "Any gay man can marry any woman that I can marry. "

    This is a disingenuous argument. You are permitted to marry a partner of your own choosing; gay people aren't.

    "Men and women have substantial differences that indicate that the relationship between homosexual couples is not equivalent to the relationship between heterosexual couples."

    Equivalent in what sense? You don't explain. Why should this supposed non-equivalence justify the denial of marriage-based protections and benefits to legally married same-sex couples?

  126. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:00 AM:

    I recommend reading this well-reasoned opinion: http://docfiles.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/massachusetts/madce/1:2009cv10309/120672/70/0.pdf

  127. KStret says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:21 AM:

    Spencer,
    If you think homosexuals are being discriminated against simply because they can not get married and because of this a judge can implement same sex marriage, you have to believe that redefining marriage is a right, whether you state it or not. The argument does not work any other way.

    You are transparently attempting to side step the implications of your position. Your argument still doesn't work even if you are granted your semantics game.

    OK....you never explicitly stated that same sex marriage is a right even though it is implied by your arguments. The problem is that you end up in the exact same place regardless of if you call same sex marriage a right or not.

    If homosexuals are being discriminated against because they can not change the definition of marriage, so is any other group who wants to change the definition of marriage. Any group that wants a new definition of marriage can go to court and have it implemented right away by a activist judge.

    The end result is the same, regardless of if you play your semantics game or not. We are forced to live in a society that has a marriage free for all.

    In previous debate you attempted to disingenuously divorce same sex marriage from polygamy. You argued that they are two separate issues. That is a ridiculous argument.

    If you believe that polygamists, same sex couples, and whatever other group that wants to redefine marriage can go to court and have their agenda implemented by a judge, the end result is a culture where marriage means whatever anyone wants it to mean.

    If a judge can implement it, that means anyone who disagrees with you doesn't have a choice.What I said was true. I am not misrepresenting your opinion.

    "gain, the issue isn't about changing marriage to include same-sex couples. Same-sex couples can already get married."

    You are side stepping the issue and attempting to get around the rationale to allow same sex marriage. A judge has already passed it, so you don't have to make a case to justify same sex marriage? A judge uses flawed legal rationale to implement same sex marriage in one state and all other states are forced to accept that?

    There was only one one state that followed the rule of law to implement same sex marriage. All other states used judicial tyranny to pass same sex marriage. What rationale do they use to implement same sex marriage? That redefining marriage is a right.

    By agreeing with the judges, you are agreeing that redefining marriage is a right. If you didn't agree with that, you would be arguing against the judges rationale.

    By not having a problem of how same sex marriage was passed, it also shows that you do not care if the rule of law is broken or not. You just care about your agenda being implemented and you do not care how. This again show that I am not misrepresenting you position.

    "The issue is: why should marriage-based benefits be denied to same-sex couples who are already legally married?"

    You are again side stepping the real issue and attempting to flip the burden of explanation. If you think same sex couples should be allowed to get married; make the case. If you want to change the definition of marriage you do not get to assume that you are correct and say, "Give me one good reason why we shouldn't have same sex marriage."

    It is up to you to make the argument and if people reject that argument, you should be fine with that because you have not made an argument for the legal justification to implement same sex marriage by the judiciary.

    Assuming that it is discriminatory, arguing that states already have same sex marriage laws and that it is not fair that all states don't recognize same sex marriages from other states, and flipping the burden of explanation isn't making a case legally or rationally.

  128. KStret says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:29 AM:

    Rob,
    "you ask me if I claim the same level of knowledge as God. No. I claim more by virtue of the fact that I exist. When I refer to God I do so in the context of God as a man made construct."

    If you don't believe in God, you can not argue that God is a moral relativist or judge his decisions. Once you get into that territory, you are putting yourself on God's level.

    "Why should I care about any issue? Because I choose to? Why should I choose to? Because I can."

    That is not answering my question. You believe all morals are subjective. If that is the case, accepting or rejecting homosexuality is all the same. If you are a moral relativist, you shouldn't care.


    "To answer your question I would ask you to reflect on those countries where the practice of homosexuality is illegal. El Salvador, some middle east and African nations. You will note that many of these nations rank depressingly low on indexes of social development and adherence to human rights. So from a cultural and moral standpoint I emphatically answer yes; nations that support homosexual relationships and afford them the same status in law appear to be more culturally advanced."

    You are contradicting yourself. If all morals are subjective and relative, a country that stones or hangs people just because they are gay simply has a different set of morals. You can not say one set of morals are better than the other.

    By saying that a country that doesn't stone and hang people because they are gay is "more evolved" than one that does, you are saying the culture that doesn't kill gays is objectively morally better than one that does. This contradicts the notion that all morals are relative.

    When we get into a debate, do you think of my position as the equivalent of someone who has a different favorite flavor of ice cream? Probably not.

    You most likely think of your opinion as being more evolved, more enlightened, and you care more, because of this your opinion hold more water. While my opinion is one of a less evolved knuckle dragging neanderthal. That is not moral relativism and you are not a moral relativist.

    You have politically correct secular progressive values that you think are superior. You want to replace traditional values with secular liberal values.

    You also dodged my question about abused children growing up to be abusers and the questions about porn stars and strippers.

    Do you think abusers are born that way or are they made that way because of the abuse?

    Do you think porn stars and stripper are born that way or are they made that way because of being abused or coming from highly dysfunctional homes?

    You are not going to answer this question because if you answer that they are made that way it undercuts the politically correct premise that homosexuality is 100% the result of a genetic abnormality or to put it another way, they don't have a choice because they were born that way.

    If you say porn stars, strippers and abusers are made that way because of being abused, it's not a stretch to say that abuse can cause people to be gay or have gay tendencies in some cases.

    Also, if you are going to argue that homosexuality should be accepted because some animals can be homosexuals and that there are no objective morals, shouldn't we accept rape as well?

    Animals rape other animals all the time, if all morals are relive, shouldn't we get rid of rape laws? Rape being legal or illegal is all subjective. A society that permits rape shouldn't be any morally better or worse than one that doesn't.

  129. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:36 AM:

    Kstret,

    I made myself clear that I would not engage further with you until I see a retraction regarding the two false statements you made (actually, there were more than two, but I'll settle for two). You stated that you "did not say one thing that wasn't true or misrepresent your opinion." However, I provided two examples where you did just that.

    1). You maintain the falsehood that "redefining marriage is a right" is part of my argument. Will you retract your false statement?

    "If you think homosexuals are being discriminated against simply because they can not get married and because of this a judge can implement same sex marriage, you have to believe that redefining marriage is a right, whether you state it or not."

    Patently false. You will not find "redefining marriage is a right" as a premise (express or implied) in any of my arguments.

    "In previous debate you attempted to disingenuously divorce same sex marriage from polygamy. You argued that they are two separate issues. That is a ridiculous argument."

    I made my position clear in post Mar 12, 2011 @ 12:25 AM. You chose to ignore my argument.


    2). You also falsely stated that I've argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it is?" Will you retract your false statement?

  130. KStret says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:43 AM:

    "http://docfiles.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/massachusetts/madce/1:2009cv10309/120672/70/0.pdf"

    This was the subject that started the other same sex marriage debate. On one hand they are basically saying that the Federal government should not be involved in defining marriage. The federal government can not deny federal benefits to same sex couples where they have same sex marriage laws.

    In this case, defining marriage should be left to individual states. Then they turn around and say individual states can not define marriage between one man and one woman. It's a circular argument.

    They cite equal protection. If you charge the definition of marriage for for one group you have to change the definition of marriage for all others.

    They are basically pulling any reason out of thin air to implement same sex marriage. They like it and they will use any reason they can to pass it.

  131. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 12:05 PM:

    Kstret,

    You've proven yourself to be a dishonest debator. I provided two examples where you misrepresented my views. Have you owned up to those errors? Have you retracted your false statements? No. Tell me, Kstret: when one misrepresents another person's position, then refuses to acknowledge and retract those misrepresentations, is he debating honestly?

    1). You maintain the falsehood that "redefining marriage is a right" is part of my argument. Will you retract your false statement?

    2). You also falsely stated that I've argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it is?" Will you retract your false statement?

  132. KStret says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:03 PM:

    Spencer,
    Do you really want to disingenuously argue that you think that it is discriminatory that same sex couples can not get married and that a judge can legislate from the bench and pass same sex marriage but you are not calling same sex marriage a right because you never explicitly said that?

    Do you really want to argue that even though you have agreed with the judges rationale to allow same sex marriage which is predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a right, that you are not calling same sex marriage a right because you never explicitly said that?

    The notion that marriage is a right logically follows from your position whether you state that marriage is a right or not.

    I have even granted you the semantics game that you are playing and the end result is still a society where a person can have 5 wives and 5 husbands. The result is the same regardless of if you admit that your position is that marriage is a right or not.

    Your position that not allowing that same sex marriage is discriminatory dictates that every one has the right to redefine marriage. You are discriminating against anyone who wants to redefine marriage by not letting them do so.

    "I made my position clear in post Mar 12, 2011 @ 12:25 AM. You chose to ignore my argument."

    No Spencer, I did in fact address your arguments. Any one here can see that I did address your points. It does not matter if you think it is unjustified to define marriage between one man and one woman.

    That is not making a legal argument to justify your position that a judge can impose same sex marriage on society. That is not making a case as to why we should allow same sex marriage to begin with. That is just your opinion that has absolutely no rationale to it.

    By arguing that a state has to justify the discrimination when they pass legislation to define marriage between one man and one woman is assuming that it is a fact that it is discriminatory and you are passing the burden of explanation on to the states when it is your responsibility.

    Also, I and many other people do not think that it is discriminatory to define marriage between one man and one women, why does you opinion trump mine? Why am I forced to live in society that you get to dictate the direction of and my opinion doesn't count?

    The position that imposes same sex marriage on everyone else, dictates that defining marriage between one man and one woman is discriminatory because they say it is.

    Why is same sex marriage discriminatory? Because same sex couples can not get married. Why is it discriminatory to define marriage between one man and one woman? Because you are discriminating against same sex couples. It's a circular argument. It is clearly not assuming that redefining marriage is a right either...... actually it is.

    You can accuse me of lying and being dishonest all you want. I gave my rationale as to why I characterized your position the way I did.

    Your equivocating between two positions in the abortion debate and the arguments you were making in the other same sex marriage debate shows that people who live in glass houses should not throw stones.

    You clearly knew the ramifications of answering an incredibly simple question in the abortion debate and you ran away rather than answering the question. You know you were being totally disingenuous.

    You love framing the issue, dictating the direction of the debate, making several points while assuming that you are correct, and equivocating between the points so you can not be nailed down to one position. You then accuse who ever you are debating of making strawman arguments. For the most I do not let you get away with those debate tricks.

    You can not defend or get away from the end result of your position. That is a society were you get to dictate your opinion to me, I don't have a choice, and I have to live in a culture that has a marriage free for all. There is no getting around that. It doesn't matter if you stated that marriage is a right or not. All roads to allow same sex marriage lead to me being able to marry 5 brothers and 5 sisters.

  133. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:14 PM:

    Kstret,

    So you won't retract your false statements? Is that what you're saying?

    1). You maintain the falsehood that "redefining marriage is a right" is part of my argument. Will you retract your false statement?

    "The notion that marriage is a right logically follows from your position whether you state that marriage is a right or not."

    The position that same-sex couples have the right to marry is NOT the position that "redefining marriage is a right." You can stop it with the games now.

    "No Spencer, I did in fact address your arguments."

    You most certainly did not. I challenge you to point to the post where you addressed it.


    2). You also falsely stated that I've argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it is?" Will you retract your false statement?

  134. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:33 PM:

    Kstret,

    "even though you have agreed with the judges rationale to allow same sex marriage which is predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a right"

    Another example of your dishonest debating tactics. When have I ever agree that the "rationale to allow same sex marriage" is "predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a right?" Where did I "agree" to this? Please indicate the post where I "agreed" to this. This is just ANOTHER example of you ascribing to me a view I don't hold.

  135. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:46 PM:

    More examples of KStret's misrepresentations:

    "Do you really want to disingenuously argue that you think that it is discriminatory that same sex couples can not get married and that a judge can legislate from the bench and pass same sex marriage"

    I never stated that a judge "can legislate from the bench." This is just another caricature of my position.

    "Your position that not allowing that same sex marriage is discriminatory dictates that every one has the right to redefine marriage. You are discriminating against anyone who wants to redefine marriage by not letting them do so. "

    This is a complete strawman and misunderstanding of my argument.

    "Why is same sex marriage discriminatory? Because same sex couples can not get married. Why is it discriminatory to define marriage between one man and one woman? Because you are discriminating against same sex couples. It's a circular argument. "

    This is not an argument I made, but a fiction of your usual imagination.

    "The position that imposes same sex marriage on everyone else, dictates that defining marriage between one man and one woman is discriminatory because they say it is."

    Another strawman: It is pure caricature to claim that I've argued discrimination "because people said so." You should be ashamed.

    "By arguing that a state has to justify the discrimination when they pass legislation to define marriage between one man and one woman is assuming that it is a fact that it is discriminatory and you are passing the burden of explanation on to the states when it is your responsibility."

    I've argued for why prop8 is discriminatory -- I didn't just assume this, as you imply. The fact that you disagree with my argument doesn't give you license to revise history.

  136. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM:

    Spencer,

    I have responded to your claims. Did you read my post for Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM? I put my argument before the questions. You have not convinced me of any harm. you assert that there is harm and I have responded to the examples you have given. Gay men are able to marry the same people that I am able to marry. If I deside that I do not want to marry a woman, I want to be cellabate, I cannot marry a man to get these benifits. The couples do not meet the current legal definition of marrriage. What should the definition be changed to? Same sex relationships are not equivalent to heterosexuals in any sence. Not getting tax benifits is not harm. Emotional distres over in situation that can be adressed by changing immigration laws is not sufficent reason to change this law. You have not answered the question why this consitutes changing the definition of marriage instead of chainging the immigration laws.

    Spencer, I am tired of you hiding behind burden of proof nonsence. What is the definition of marriage that the federal government should adopt so thet the can give out marriage benifits? Why shouldn't I think that this is what Dr. craig said it was, an attempt to deconstruct marriage? Why should poligamists be excluded from benifits? Why should singles be excluded from benifits. You need to make you case. You have not. I have.

  137. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:52 PM:

    Spencer,
    I'm not getting through to you
    You have not convinced me. How could you. You hide behind not having to prove anything. Unless you state what you want federal marriage laws to by you cannot convince anyone of anything.

    all you've done is ignore the issue at hand and divert attention.
    I have stated and made arguments for my position. You have lied here, something you like to accuse people of.

    I think same-sex marriage ought to be legal (I do) is irrelevant here
    No, it is exactly the point. What definition of marriage should the federal government adopt?

    If they're legal, why shouldn't those marriages receive the same benefits and protections as marriages between opposite-sex couples? The denial undoubtedly harms. Why are you in favor of such harmful treatment against homosexuals?
    I have responded to this. You have not responded in kind.

    This is a disingenuous argument. You are permitted to marry a partner of your own choosing; gay people aren't.
    I am not allowed to marry a partner of my own choosing. I cannot marry a man just so I can get these benefits. I can marry a woman just so I can get these benefits.

    Equivalent in what sense? You don't explain. Why should this supposed non-equivalence justify the denial of marriage-based protections and benefits to legally married same-sex couples?
    Equivalent in every since. Men can care for children in way that women cannot. Women can care for children in ways that men cannot. A same sex couple removes one of these ways of caring for children. Men and women are different. A same sex couple removes one of these components from the equation. Why shouldn’t we give them benefits? Why should polygamists not get benefits? Why should singles not get benefits? Why should I not think that you are doing what Dr. Craig said this was about? Are you trying to deconstruct marriage?

    What is your definition of marriage? Why should I adopt that definition? These marriages are not recognized federal law. Why should that be changed? Why should Texas be forced to recognize these marriages?

    Read posts Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM and Mar 13, 2011 @ 02:03 AM and respond.

  138. Spencer says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 09:29 PM:

    Thomas,

    Before we can proceed, we need to first agree on what the issue is. I do not take the issue to be whether whether same-sex couples ought to be able to marry. Instead, we're debating whether legally valid marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized for federal purposes (i.e. receiving marriage-based benefits). Do you agree?

  139. HenryA says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 10:28 PM:

    I am writing here in response to robaylesbury's (Rob's?) questions/comments on my post of March 9th, and anyone who has continued the "theistic moral relativism" critique.

    In response to the part of the comment: "Given that God can and does flout moral absolutes with impunity, does this not imply that morality isn't absolute?" I would like to point out that whether or not the morals can be flaunted is irrevelevent, since morality is not defined by being mandatory in nature and also that the absence of punishment (as in the case of God) would be irrelevent. But for those statements to matter, we must first address what evidence you find that God "does flout moral absolutes". If it's something to do with the Cananites or some similar part of the old testament, please do not raise any objections which are already so articulately addressed by Dr. Craig right here: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=5767

    Moving on to the second comment/question. "Is that not a kind of moral relativism for the theist?"
    Well I wouldn't continue with that contention. Aside from the fact that you would have to somehow ascertain the exact behaviors of God (it is not enough to address, say, the old testament, as the Christian god is not the only hypothetical god, and the text may be inaccurate even if it is God), but also my post was written based exclusively on athiestic arguments. All you could do, even if you overcame the (I think) insurmountable objections already raised, and somehow proved that God was a moral relativist (or would be), then all you've done is shown the morals NEVER are facts, anymore then say my favorite kind of ice cream is a fact. And that is fine with all the arguments I made.

    On an unrelated note, I would like to say that the level of civility present here (and relatively intellectual discussion) is inspiring compared to other forums. I even got a "hello and welcome to the forum" from Rob. Thanks.

  140. Thomas says on Mar 13, 2011 @ 11:41 PM:

    Spencer,

    The topic I am arguing is what definition of marriage should the federal government hold in order to determine who is elegable for marriage benifits, and what effects this will have on state laws.

  141. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:56 AM:

    Thomas,

    Then you should have no problem with the way I framed the issue: whether legally valid marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized for federal purposes (i.e. receiving marriage-based benefits). The federal government should recognize legally valid marriages between same-sex couples.

    Why? Because the federal government gives marriage-based benefits to legally married opposite-sex couples, and there is no meaningful difference between legally married opposite-sex couples and legally married same-sex couples that would justify different treatment. Both groups consists of legally married couples. The fact that same-sex couples can't reproduce isn't a meaningful difference: many opposite-sex couples can't reproduce either. So why exactly do you think legally married same-sex couples shouldn't receive the same benefits and protections as legally married opposite-sex couples?

    Despite your insistence, you have not adequately addressed this question. You claim that legally married same-sex couples and legally married opposite-sex couples are not "equivalent," but you have yet to explain: 1) why they aren't "equivalent," in your view, and 2) why any the alleged differences justify denying legally married same-sex couples the benefits and protections that married couples receive.

    "The couples do not meet the current legal definition of marrriage."

    False. They DO meet the current legal definition of marriage. Again, many same-sex couples, just like many opposite-sex couples, are legally married.

    "You have not convinced me of any harm. you assert that there is harm and I have responded to the examples you have given."

    No, you have not. I showed you some of the harm that DOMA causes: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/10/26/doma.

    Imagine if Congress passed a law, DOMA2, that has the effect of denying all legally married opposite-sex couples who are between the ages of 30 - 55 the marriage-based benefits and protections that other legally married couples receive. Would these married couples be harmed? Obviously. On your view, you seem to be suggesting that legally married same-sex couples would not be harmed because they are same-sex couples, which is nonsense.

  142. robaylesbury says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:15 PM:

    I have to be honest, I have read and re-read kstrets last post directed towards me and I confess that I cannot make head nor tail of it. There seems to be fair amounts of repetition, laced with the standard re-imaginings of what his opponent has actually said.

    Ergo, It is probably wise for me to allow others to draw their own conclusions as to the saliency of my position. I need to be able to understand a person in order to engage with them. I just cannot fathom so much of what he says.

  143. robaylesbury says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:35 PM:

    Hello again HenryA. I winced somewhat at your choice of post. WLC's widely commented upon, and infamous piece on the slaughter of the caananites received a lot of attention in secular circles.

    It can be distilled into the following statement; God can do what he wants.

    http://commonsenseatheism.com/?p=682

    If you want to worship this God you are free to do so. I'd suggest slipping him a few anti psychotics from time to time, however.

  144. robaylesbury says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:47 PM:

    http://aunicornist.blogspot.com/2010/05/slaughter-of-canaanites-why-its-big.html

    One for the road.

  145. joel says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 07:23 PM:

    US laws governing marriage are discriminatory. They discriminate against homosexual relationships.

    But only in the same way that unemployment compensation laws discriminate against people with jobs, the GI bill discriminates against people who are not in the military, Social Security discriminates against young people, and the Americans With Disabilities Act discriminates against able-bodied people, and speed limits discriminate against people who drive fast. Laws discriminate. That's their job. They draw distinctions between groups of people for various reasons. Sometimes those reasons are punitive, sometimes they are because we as a society want to help or encourage a specific group of people. It is impossible to punish, help, or encourage a group of people if all distinctions are deemed illegal. If the definitions can be bent, they can be broken, and we lose the ability to draw any useful distinctions between anything.

    Second point. Claiming that the absence of a benefit constitutes "harm" is just absurd. Just as absurd as me claiming I am being unconstitutionally harmed by not being given the same close parking privileges as people in wheelchairs. There is no harm for homosexual couples. Just the absence of a benefit. It may be sad that a gay person can't be with their partner because they can't get citizenship, but no more sad than a person who is estranged from a beloved relative who can't get citizenship. It's easy to tell a heart-wrenching tale then point the finger at some entity as being responsible. But that does not make the fingered entity responsible for your plight. No different than if I wrote a sad story about how I once had to walk all the way across a parking lot where I stepped on a nail, then was hit by a car, and got stuck inside a shopping cart...and it was all the fault of that Americans With Disabilities Act denying me a close parking spot based on nothing more than me being who I am!

    As for the question of "how can the federal government deny legal marriage between same sex couples" I'll address that for a moment. Lets say a state wants to help out retired people by paying them a few thousand dollars a month out of a state "social security fund." Let's say that state also decides that the age at which a person can receive these benefits is 35. So, at 35 a person can quit their jobs and live off the states social security. They'll be legally retired and eligible for social security in that state.

    Now, do you believe that the federal government should then be obligated to extend federal social security benefits to those people? Sorry. That's crazy. A state can make up any wacky definitions it wants. That does not make the federal government, or any other state, obligated to accept the same definitions.

  146. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:07 PM:

    robaylesbury,

    You posted this same article in Go Vote theread http://aunicornist.blogspot.com/2010/05/slaughter-of-canaanites-why-its-big.html. I responded there and you never adressed any of my responces. Why post it again as if it is some sort of defeater.

  147. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:12 PM:

    Spencer,

    Under federal law there is no such thing as same sex married. Their marriage has no legal standeing with the federal government.

    You still have not answered my question. What is your definition of marriage?

    I have answered you questions. You do not like the answeres you get. I even add to my answeres. Because you do not answere mine I feel no obligation to explain my self further.

  148. HenryA says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:26 PM:

    Lol. WLC gets a lot of feedback. Geez, I find it telling that academic, well studied philosophers with doctorates (athiests included) find Dr. Craig to be so much less stupid and insipid than all of these part-time internet commentators. Anyway.

    Does your continued attack on Christianity and absence of a response to the other points [i.e. this: "Aside from the fact that you would have to somehow ascertain the exact behaviors of God (it is not enough to address, say, the old testament, as the Christian god is not the only hypothetical god, and the text may be inaccurate even if it is God), but also my post was written based exclusively on athiestic arguments. All you could do, even if you overcame the (I think) insurmountable objections already raised, and somehow proved that God was a moral relativist (or would be), then all you've done is shown the morals NEVER are facts, anymore then say my favorite kind of ice cream is a fact. And that is fine with all the arguments I made."] and most of the March 9th post mean you concede those points? Biblical inerrancy, theistic perogatives, Old Testament atrocities, etc. are a huge area of discussion, which offers much room for rational discussion, but isn't relevant to this issue, as far as I can tell, for the reasons I highlighted in the part of the previous post which I reposted in this comment.

    The articles simply say "an all loving good god couldn't commit these atrocities" therefore... And I'm not sure where exactly they go from here, aside from speculation about whether the Bible is wrong, God is evil, God was invented to justify israely conduct, or God is insane. Basically all they've done is say that the stories could mean almost anything. Great. That's an uncompelling case for anything. And to say that the Israelites had a screwed up code of laws isn't an effective attack on their god unless there was agreement that god, rather than humans dictated all these laws. There's no such agreement. Also, all the articles invoke an appeal to emotion argument: Children were brutally killed and so on and so forth and its soooo unfair and he's a Bully! Oh dear. Not liking something doesn't prove it wrong. And if God doesn't exist, there is definitely no basis for objective morality, so his hypotheitcal crimes are doubly irrelevant. And whether or not naturalistic objective morality exists is irrelevent of the existence of "theistic moral relativity".

  149. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:27 PM:

    Thomas,

    "Under federal law there is no such thing as same sex married. Their marriage has no legal standeing with the federal government. "

    The fact that the federal government does not recognize same-sex marriage does not mean that there are no legally married same-sex couples. Again, the whole issue is whether legally valid marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized for federal purposes (i.e. to receive marriage-based benefits). To reiterate that those legally valid marriages are not recognized by the federal government is to merely repeat what's at issue.

    I've made a fairly straightforward argument for why the federal government should recognize legally valid marriages between same-sex couples. The federal government gives marriage-based benefits to legally married opposite-sex couples, and there is no meaningful difference between legally married opposite-sex couples and legally married same-sex couples that would justify different treatment. Both groups consists of legally married couples.
    The fact that same-sex couples can't reproduce isn't a meaningful difference: many opposite-sex couples can't reproduce either.


    "I have answered you questions."

    No, you have not. You haven't answered:

    1) Why do you think legally married same-sex couples shouldn't receive the same benefits and protections as legally married opposite-sex couples?

    2) What differentiates legally married same-sex couples from legally married same-sex couples that would justify the difference in treatment?

    3) Why aren't legally married same-sex couples and legally married opposite-sex couples "equivalent," in your view? (Again, the fact that same-sex couples can't reproduce isn't a meaningful difference: many opposite-sex couples can't reproduce either.)

    4) Why do any of the alleged differences justify denying legally married same-sex couples the benefits and protections that married couples receive?

    5) You also claim that DOMA doesn't harm homosexuals. Again, suppose Congress passed a law, DOMA2, that has the effect of denying all legally married opposite-sex couples without children the marriage-based benefits and protections that other legally married couples receive. Would these married couples be harmed? Yes or no? If yes, why can't legally married same-sex couples harmed when they're denied marriage-based benefits and protections?

    "What is your definition of marriage?"

    Once again, the issue isn't the "definition of marriage." The issue is whether the federal government should recognize marriages between legally married same-sex couples.

  150. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 09:47 PM:

    Spencer,

    The issue is the definition of marriage.

  151. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 10:01 PM:

    Thomas,

    Incorrect, as I've explained.

  152. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 10:02 PM:

    1) Why do you think legally married same-sex couples shouldn't receive the same benefits and protections as legally married opposite-sex couples? Adressed in Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM,Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:


    2) What differentiates legally married same-sex couples from legally married same-sex couples that would justify the difference in treatment? Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:

    3) Why aren't legally married same-sex couples and legally married opposite-sex couples "equivalent," in your view? (Again, the fact that same-sex couples can't reproduce isn't a meaningful difference: many opposite-sex couples can't reproduce either.)Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM, Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM,Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:,Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:


    :


    4) Why do any of the alleged differences justify denying legally married same-sex couples the benefits and protections that married couples receive?Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM:, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:

    5) You also claim that DOMA doesn't harm homosexuals. Again, suppose Congress passed a law, DOMA2, that has the effect of denying all legally married opposite-sex couples without children the marriage-based benefits and protections that other legally married couples receive. Would these married couples be harmed? Yes or no? If yes, why can't legally married same-sex couples harmed when they're denied marriage-based benefits and protections?

    I would not argue based on harm. I would argue based on what the definition should be.

    What should the definition of marriage that the federal government operztes under be? What is you definition of marriage? This is what the debate is about.

  153. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 10:05 PM:

    Spencer,

    You do not want to carry the burden of answereing any questions. What is your definition of marriage? This is what the whole threas is about. I never have agreed to the way that you have framed the issue.

  154. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 10:33 PM:

    Thomas,

    -----------
    1) Why do you think legally married same-sex couples shouldn't receive the same benefits and protections as legally married opposite-sex couples? Adressed in Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM,Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:
    ------------

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM" response that "The couples do not meet the current legal definition of marrriage" has been addressed: those couples meet the current legal definition of marriage, as they are legally married.

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM" response that "By definition gay couples are not married under federal law" is similarly refuted. To reiterate that the federal government has not recognized legally valid marriages as marriages for federal purposes is not an argument - it merely states what's in contention.

    Your "Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM" response was addressed in my "Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:08 AM" response.

    -------------
    2) What differentiates legally married same-sex couples from legally married same-sex couples that would justify the difference in treatment? Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:
    --------------

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM" response does not identify anything about legally married same-sex couples that differentiates them from legally married same-sex couples.

    Your "Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:" response does not identify anything about legally married same-sex couples that differentiates them from legally married same-sex couples.

    Your "Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM" response was addressed in "Mar 8, 2011 @ 08:08 AM"

    -------------
    3) Why aren't legally married same-sex couples and legally married opposite-sex couples "equivalent," in your view? (Again, the fact that same-sex couples can't reproduce isn't a meaningful difference: many opposite-sex couples can't reproduce either.)Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM, Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM,Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM, Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:,Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:
    ------------

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM" response does not explain why you think the two groups aren't equivalent. All you said was that they weren't equivalent.

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM" response does not even attempt to explain why you think the two groups aren't equivalent.

    Your "Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM" response was addressed in my "Mar 12, 2011 @ 11:08 AM" response. In fact, in your response, you even conceded that your argument for including infertiles is invalid.

    Your "Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM" response was addressed in my subsequent "Mar 8, 2011 @ 08:08 AM" response.

    -----------
    Why do any of the alleged differences justify denying legally married same-sex couples the benefits and protections that married couples receive?Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM:, Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM:
    -------------

    Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 03:07 AM" response doesn't even attempt to identify a difference between legally married same-sex couples and legally married opposite-sex couples.

    Your "Mar 8, 2011 @ 02:19 AM" response was addressed in my subsequent "Mar 8, 2011 @ 08:08 AM" response.


    "I would not argue based on harm. I would argue based on what the definition should be."

    You didn't answer the question. I asked: Would these married couples be harmed? Yes or no? It was your contention the legally married same-sex couples are NOT harmed by the denial of benefits and protections.

    "What should the definition of marriage that the federal government operztes under be?"

    The federal government should recognize marriages that are legally recognized in the states. I argued for why this should be so. The federal government gives marriage-based benefits to legally married opposite-sex couples, and there is no meaningful difference between legally married opposite-sex couples and legally married same-sex couples that would justify different treatment. To deny one group the benefits and protections that the other receives requires justification. But there is no adequate justification for this difference in treatment. Hence the federal government ought to treat, for federal purposes, legally valid marriages between same-sex couples and legally valid marriages between opposite-sex couples similarly.

    "What is you definition of marriage? This is what the debate is about."

    No it is not. In this debate, we necessarily start with the assumption that some marriages between same-sex couples are legally valid.

  155. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 10:42 PM:

    Two corrections:

    1) Your "Mar 13, 2011 @ 08:29 PM" response does not identify anything about legally married same-sex couples that differentiates them from legally married opposite-sex couples.

    2) Your "Mar 12, 2011 @ 02:58 AM:" response does not identify anything about legally married same-sex couples that differentiates them from legally married opposite-sex couples.

  156. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 11:07 PM:

    Spencer,

    I never started with the assumption that any marriages were legaly valid under federal law.

    DOMA states that: No State, territory, or possession of the United States, or Indian tribe, shall be required to give effect to any public act, record, or judicial proceeding of any other State, territory, possession, or tribe respecting a relationship between persons of the same sex that is treated as a marriage under the laws of such other State, territory, possession, or tribe, or a right or claim arising from such relationship.'.

    The federal government is under no obligation to recognise state law.

    What definition of marriage should the federal government operate under? Where do you draw the line? I have given many different meaningfull diferences between samesex relationships and same sex relationships. You are equivocating. Why should i not think that this is about deconstructing marriage like Craig said? How will the states be protected from having to change their laws to accomodate these couples?

  157. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 11:15 PM:

    Thomas,

    You didn't even attempt to address my previous post.

  158. Thomas says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 11:39 PM:

    Spencer read it again and think. My first statment deals directly with your statment "we necessarily start with the assumption that some marriages between same-sex couples are legally valid."

  159. Spencer says on Mar 14, 2011 @ 11:47 PM:

    Thomas,

    Do you deny that some marriages between same-sex couples are legally valid? Do you deny same-sex couples can legally marry in Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and the District of Columbia? Yes or no?

    If no, then you agree with me that some same-sex marriages are legally valid.

    And I'll say again: you didn't even attempt to address my previous post, despite the fact that I responded at length.

  160. Thomas says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 12:24 AM:

    Spencer,

    Do you deny that some marriages between same-sex couples are legally valid? Do you deny same-sex couples can legally marry in Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and the District of Columbia? Yes or no?
    These marriages are not recognised by the federal Government. They have no legal standing with the federal government. It does not matter what standing they have with the state governments. I have already given this answer. To say that I have not given this answer is to tell a lie.

    And I'll say again: you didn't even attempt to address my previous post, despite the fact that I responded at length.
    If you have responded at length then what is your answer to:What is the definition of marriage that the federal government should adopt so thet the can give out marriage benifits? Why shouldn't I think that this is what Dr. craig said it was, an attempt to deconstruct marriage? Why should poligamists be excluded from benifits? Why should singles be excluded from benifits? How will other states be protected from having to change their laws?

    This is verry much about the definition of marriage. To deny this is not dealing with the whole issue.

  161. Spencer says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 12:50 AM:

    Thomas,

    "These marriages are not recognised by the federal Government. They have no legal standing with the federal government. "

    This is a nonresponsive answer. The fact that they are not recognized by the federal government doesn't mean they aren't legally valid marriages. We both agree, from the outset, that some marriages between same-sex couples are legally valid (again, the fact that they aren't recognized by the federal government is irrelevant).

    "To say that I have not given this answer is to tell a lie."

    No, it is not a lie. To say that the federal government doesn't recognize same-sex marriage is NOT to say that marriages between same-sex couples are illegal everywhere. We both know that those marriages are legal in some places -- again, this is the starting point, which you cannot deny.

    "If you have responded at length then what is your answer to:What is the definition of marriage that the federal government should adopt so thet the can give out marriage benifits?"

    Asked and answered. See the following posts: Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:56 AM, and Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:27 PM.

    "Why shouldn't I think that this is what Dr. craig said it was, an attempt to deconstruct marriage? "

    Irrelevant question. This does not address my arguments.

    "Why should poligamists be excluded from benifits? "

    When they can get legally married, they shouldn't be. Here, the focus is on marriages between same-sex couples that are legally married.

    "Why should singles be excluded from benifits? "

    Because they aren't married.

    "How will other states be protected from having to change their laws?"

    What protections would they need?

    "This is verry much about the definition of marriage. To deny this is not dealing with the whole issue."

    Again, the issue is whether legally valid marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized for federal purposes (i.e. to receive marriage-based benefits). The issue here is NOT whether same-sex couples can get married (the federal government does not issue marriage licenses).

    Now address posts Mar 14, 2011 @ 04:56 AM, and Mar 14, 2011 @ 08:27 PM.

  162. Thomas says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 02:48 AM:

    Spencer,

    I think it is pointless for us to continue. We do not even agree on the nature of the debate.

  163. Spencer says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 08:16 AM:

    Thomas,

    Good day then. I responded to your posts at length, and believe you now know that the way I framed the issue is correct. I understand that you are unable to meet the challenges I raised for your position.

  164. KStret says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 10:22 AM:

    Spencer,
    All you are doing to playing games with semantics. Your argument is asinine. Just because you didn't explicitly state something, doesn't mean that I am mischaracterizing your position.

    Do you think that same sex marriage can be imposed on people by a judge? YES!

    Do you agree with the judges rationale on imposing same sex marriage on society? YES!

    Do you think a state can pass legislation to define marriage between one man and one woman? NO!

    Do you think it is discriminatory to gay couples not to allow same sex couples to get married? Yes!

    Do you believe same sex couples can go to court and a judge can make same sex marriage the law of the land? YES!

    Do you believe polygamists can go to court and a judge can make polygamy the law of the land? YES!

    By passing same sex marriage are you redefining marriage? YES!

    By playing games with semantics and arguing that you didn't say that redefining marriage is a right but it is discriminatory, does that change anything?

    NO! It takes you down the exact same road and you end up in the exact same place.

    You are going to sit here with a straight face, accuse me of making a strawman argument because you never said that you think redefining marriage is a right?

    You don't have to. You think a judge can impose same sex marriage on people, states don't have a right to define marriage how they want, and it is discriminatory not to allow same sex marriage. If it looks like a duck and it walks like a duck.....what is it?

    I am dishonest but you think polygamists can go to court and a judge can make polygamy the law of the land, then you disingenuously attempt to divorce polygamy from same sex marriage, arguing they are two separate issues. You are not committed to polygamy just because you support same sex marriage.

    Do you think polygamists can go to court and a judge can make polygamy the law of the land? Yes, you were forced to admit that. If you didn't, you were being totally hypocritical and you would have to be discriminating against polygamists.

    If you believe that, what does the culture look like after polygamists get a judge to impose polygamy on society? It means marriage could be one man and another man or 5 woman and 5 men.

    I believe that states can not pass laws that make pot illegal. I believe a judge can overturn laws that make pot illegal. I believe it is discriminatory to pot smokers to have laws that makes pot illegal. Do I think smoking pot is a right? I have to and it doesn't matter if I stated that or not.

    Are you really going to accuse me of lying and being dishonest when you are making a ridiculous arguments?

    On top of that, by accusing me of being dishonest and lying, what you are really saying is I don't really believe that your position dictates that marriage is a right.

    " we're debating whether legally valid marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized for federal purposes (i.e. receiving marriage-based benefits)"

    What a great trick to avoid making a case as to why we should allow same sex marriages to begin with. You don't have to argue why we should have same sex marriage, the issue is about the federal government recognizing same sex marriages.

    Clearly, the Federal government should not define marriage. That is up to individual states. If a individual state has same sex marriage law, the federal government has to recognize that marriage.

    Do individual states have a right to define marriage between one man and one woman? No, that is discriminating against same sex couples.

    When individual states have same sex marriage laws, the states have a right to define marriage how they want. When individual states do not allow same sex marriage laws, they don't have a right to define marriage how they want. Any logician can see that reasoning is flawless.

    "We both know that those marriages are legal in some places -- again, this is the starting point, which you cannot deny."

    No Spencer, the starting would be you making a case as to why would should allow same sex marriage to begin with. Assuming that it is in fact discriminatory, arguing that you do not think it is justified, using a warped interpretation of the 14th amendment, and attempting to pass the burden of explanation over to the other side because you can not make a case or defend your position is not even remotely close to an argument.

    By disingenuously attempting to argue that states already have same sex marriage laws, thus other states should be forced to recognize them, is side stepping the issue. It is also predicated on a flawed premise. If a judge uses flawed rationale to allow same sex marriage, all states must be forced to enact same sex marriage.

    "Would these married couples be harmed? Yes or no?"

    This just another attempt to pass the burden of of explanation off to the other side and avoid the illogical land mines of your own position. The question is not would married couples be harmed, the question is why should we redefine marriage to begin with.

    The rule of law is being harmed by the way same sex marriage is being implemented. I also asked why the Soviet Union would want to legitimize homosexuality in the U.S as a way of taking down the United States. No same sex marriage proponent would answer the question.

    You want to start the debate from a position that assumes you are correct, argue that it is already law in some states and because of this all other states are forced to accept it, equivocate, frame the debate in way that that allows you to side step the real issue, avoid making your own case, and pass on the burden of explanation on to states and people that want to keep the definition of marriage the same.

    It is transparently obvious that you are attempting to avoid the ramifications of your position and you can't argue for or defend your opinion.All you can do is call everything a strawman argument and accuse anyone who disagrees with you of lying or being dishonest

  165. KStret says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 10:37 AM:

    Rob,
    "I have to be honest, I have read and re-read kstrets last post directed towards me and I confess that I cannot make head nor tail of it. There seems to be fair amounts of repetition, laced with the standard re-imaginings of what his opponent has actually said."

    It's not a difficult concept to grasp. You talk about moral relativism and then turn around and contradict it. If all morals are relative, a culture that stones homosexuals to death is no better or worse than one that doesn't. Do you believe that? No, you think a culture that accepts homosexuality is morally objectively better than one that stones homosexuals to death. You just replaced morally objectively better with "more evolved."

  166. Spencer says on Mar 15, 2011 @ 11:08 AM:

    KStret,

    I provided at least two examples where you blatantly misrepresent my position.

    1) "Redefining marriage is a right" is not a premise or hidden assumption in my argument. You cannot point to anything I wrote and validly infer from it that I think "redefining marriage is a right." Will you retract your false statement?

    2) I never argued: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say say." Will you retract your false statement? This is an utter strawman.

    "Clearly, the Federal government should not define marriage. That is up to individual states. If a individual state has same sex marriage law, the federal government has to recognize that marriage."

    Wow, then you agree with me that DOMA is unconstitutional! From what you wrote, it follows that the federal government has to recognize legally valid marriages between same-sex couples. But the federal government doesn't recognize any legally valid marriages between same-sex couples. Hence, it follows that federal government should not define marriage between one man and one woman. Am I missing something here, or did you just concede the whole issue?

  167. KStret says on Mar 16, 2011 @ 04:18 PM:

    Spencer,
    "I provided at least two examples where you blatantly misrepresent my position.....You cannot point to anything I wrote and validly infer from it that I think "redefining marriage is a right."

    You can keep pretending that I didn't say anything but I did point out why your opinions infer that marriage is a right.

    You believe that homosexuals are being discriminated against because they can't get married,states can not pass laws that define marriage between one man and one woman, you agree with the legal decisions to allow same sex marriage which are predicated on the idea that redefining marriage is a right, and a judge can impose same sex marriage from the bench.

    I again ask you, I don't think that redefining marriage is discriminatory and you do. However, your position is a judge can impose same sex marriage on a culture that doesn't want it. Your position can not be simply a difference of opinion. If a judge can impose it, it has to be a right.

    If you want to argue that redefining marriage being a right is not inferred, when you do not believe states have a right to keep the definition of marriage the same, a judges opinion can implement same sex marriage, you agree with the judge's rationale and you believe that not allowing same sex marriage is discriminatory, it is not me lying or being dishonest here.

    "Wow, then you agree with me that DOMA is unconstitutional! From what you wrote, it follows that the federal government has to recognize legally valid marriages between same-sex couples. But the federal government doesn't recognize any legally valid marriages between same-sex couples. Hence, it follows that federal government should not define marriage between one man and one woman. Am I missing something here, or did you just concede the whole issue?"

    Actually, I was being sarcastic there. You ignored my whole point. On one hand, same sex marriage proponents argue that states can define marriage how they want and the federal government can not to deny befits to same sex couples in states that have illegally redefined marriage. In other words, the federal government can not keep the same view of marriage as it has for over 200 years.

    Then they turn around and say states can not define marriage how they want. They can not keep the definition of marriage the same. They have to implement same sex marriage.

    They support states rights when it benefits their agenda and they are against states rights when it goes against their agenda. That is a total contradiction. Being a logician, you must be able to see that, right?

    The federal government does not have to recognize same sex marriage as being a valid marriage. This is another dishonest trick that same sex marriage proponents are attempting.

    If this decision that the federal government has to recognize same sex marriages holds, activists are going to use the flip the argument on it's head technique that you love to use so much.

    They will argue that since the federal government has recognized same sex marriages as being valid, all states must recognize them as well. All they need to do is find the right fascist judge and we will have the Utopian society where marriage means what ever anyone wants it to mean.

    "I never argued: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say say."

    You do not have to. The only reason you give is that you do not think the discrimination is justified. That is not giving any rationale as to why we should allow same sex marriage to begin with.

    That is assuming that not allowing same sex marriage is discriminatory. You want to start the debate assuming that you are correct. Also,It doesn't matter if you think that it is unjustified to keep the definition of marriage the same.

    You are not providing any legal or rational justification to support your position. In other words, not allowing same sex marriage is discriminatory because you say it is.

    You response to this was to point to your post where you say that you think defining marriage between one man and one woman is unjustified discrimination and then you pretend that I didn't address that point.

    You can keep pretending that I didn't but anyone can see that I did address your points. This begs the question, who is lying and being dishonest here?

    Why does your opinion trump mine?

  168. Spencer says on Mar 16, 2011 @ 07:04 PM:

    KStret,

    "You can keep pretending that I didn't say anything but I did point out why your opinions infer that marriage is a right. "

    Because what you say is utter nonsense.

    "you agree with the legal decisions to allow same sex marriage which are predicated on the idea that redefining marriage is a right"

    No, they are not predicated on this idea.

    "If a judge can impose it, it has to be a right. "

    Once again, you will not find "redefining marriage is a right" as a premise, explicit or otherwise, anywhere in my arguments.

    "On one hand, same sex marriage proponents argue that states can define marriage how they want"

    ...so long has the definition would not amount to a constitutional violation.

    "The federal government does not have to recognize same sex marriage as being a valid marriage."

    If they want to follow the constitution, they do. The federal government must recognize legally valid marriages wherever they are.

    "They will argue that since the federal government has recognized same sex marriages as being valid, all states must recognize them as well."

    What if the federal government only recognizes as legally valid, marriages between couples over 50? Would you have a problem with this? Would this unconstitutional, in your view? If so, why?

    "You do not have to."

    Then by your admission, you attributed a strawman argument to me. I never argued: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say say." Will you retract your false statement that I did? Is that too honest a deed for you to accomplish?

    "The only reason you give is that you do not think the discrimination is justified. That is not giving any rationale as to why we should allow same sex marriage to begin with. "

    Irrelevant. The fact that you disagree with my argument does not give you the license to distort it and claim I've argued something else. And btw, the argument that the discrimination is unjustified IS giving a rationale for why same-sex couples should be able to marry. You confuse not giving a rationale and giving a rationale you disagree with (a very basic confusion). The fact that I gave a rationale you disagree with doesn't mean I didn't give a rationale.

    "In other words, not allowing same sex marriage is discriminatory because you say it is."

    Another blatant distortion. I never argued this, as anyone can see. Again, the fact that I gave a rationale you disagree with doesn't mean I didn't give a rationale.


    So Kstret, I'll ask again: Will you retract the false statements you made?

    1) "Redefining marriage is a right" is not a premise or hidden assumption in my argument. You cannot point to anything I wrote and validly infer from it that I think "redefining marriage is a right." Will you retract your false statement?

    2) I never argued: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say say." Will you retract your false statement? This is an utter strawman.

  169. Thomas says on Mar 17, 2011 @ 02:11 PM:

    Spencer,

    I do not agree that the way you framed the question is correct. I think that continuing this exange is a wast of time.

  170. Spencer says on Mar 17, 2011 @ 02:24 PM:

    That's fine, Thomas.

  171. KStret says on Mar 17, 2011 @ 05:04 PM:

    Spencer,
    I see you are back to the Spencer defense trick of the one word dismissal without providing any justification for dismissing what I said. Why do you think that is a valid rebuttal?

    "Because what you say is utter nonsense"

    Really? A short dismissal that doesn't address what I said. I am really surprised that a logician would do this. Why is it nonsense, Spencer? Is it nonsense because you can't address my points but you can't admit that either, so you pretend my point is so ridiculous that you can't be bothered to come up with a rebuttal?

    Let's take the same rationale and apply it to a different subject. Massachusetts has socialized medicine. A family moves from Massachusetts to Texas. The Family sues Texas because they had health care provided to them by the state in Massachusetts but Texas doesn't have that service. Now they don't have health insurance and that is not fair.

    A judge dictates that Health care is a right, Texas is discriminating against people because they do not have socialized medicine, and the judge orders Texas to implement socialized medicine.

    A guy named Fencer 100% agrees with the decision. However, Fencer never said that socialized medicine is a right. Does Fencer think
    1. The Health Care is a right
    or
    2. That health care isn't a right.

    No one can say with a straight face that Fencer doesn't believe that socialized medicine is a right. No one other than Fencer that is.

    "No, they are not predicated on this idea. "

    All you are doing is acting acting like a three year old and saying, "No it's not" while sticking your tongue out and putting your fingers in your ears. Why isn't it predicated on the notion that redefining marriage is a right, Spencer? Where am I wrong?

    When a judge rules that states can not define marriage between a man and a women because that is discriminating to same sex couples, that is saying that redefining marriage is a right but just for same sex couples.

    If you really want to argue that the judge is not saying redefining marriage is a right, that is your business. I think you are the only person who agrees with that. Most people would think that you are being totally dishonest to avoid the land mines of your own position.

    "Irrelevant."
    Why is it irreverent, Spencer? I do not think my points are irrelevant. Since we disagree, you seem to think that your opinion trumps mine and you do not have to address my points while I should address yours.

    That is not how a debate works, Spencer. Why is it irrelevant? Because Spencer says so. Do you see a pattern here?

    "The fact that you disagree with my argument does not give you the license to distort it and claim I've argued something else. And btw, the argument that the discrimination is unjustified IS giving a rationale for why same-sex couples should be able to marry."

    There is not a court in this land that a judge can say that he thinks a law is unjustified. That is not legal rationale. Seeing that you think a judge can impose same sex marriage on society, you need to come up with another reason to justify your position. Otherwise, you are saying it's discriminatory because you say it is.

    Assuming that same sex marriage is discriminatory and playing the flip the burden of the explanation game isn't making a case at all.

    Being overly vague while ignoring my points is a great way to equivocate, so you can accuse me of making a strawman argument. This isn't making a case either.

    Also, arguing that you think it is unjustified is not making case for why we should allow same sex marriage to begin with. Your argument fails there too.

    I don't think it's discriminatory at all. Why does your opinion trump mine? Because redefining marriage is a right.... I mean it's discriminatory....whoops that is pretty much the same thing and takes you to the exact same place..ummmmmm..... You are lying, being dishonest and making a strawman argument.

    "What if the federal government only recognizes as legally valid, marriages between couples over 50? Would you have a problem with this? Would this unconstitutional, in your view? If so, why"

    Irreverent and your point is so ridiculous that I do not have to answer your question.

    If we are in a alternative universe and the federal government only recognized marriages of people who are 50 and older for 200 years. The burden would on me to make a case of why we should change it. I do not think that you could go to court and overturn that policy.

    For someone who cries straw man so much, you sure make quite a few strawman arguments yourself. You are comparing apples and oranges.

    The definition of marriage is one man and one woman. You are redefining marriage. The government setting an age that it will recognize marriages, isn't the same as the government redefining marriages.

    If the government only recognized marriages of 50 years old and later, you are not redefining marriages.

    You also keep ignoring the the totally illogical and contradicting positions of same sex marriage proponents. A state can define marriage how they want and the federal government has to recognize those marriages because individual states can define marriages how they want, but states can not keep the definition of marriage the same.

    Which is it? Do states have a right to define marriage how they want or don't they? If states rights benefits same sex marriage, then states do have a right to define marriage. If states rights do not benefit the same sex marriage agenda, states don't have that right. Being a logician, I surprised you didn't address that point. It almost looks like you are dodging it.

    We both know that the next step for the radical agenda of gay activists is to argue that the federal government recognizes same sex marriages, so all states have to.

    After all, what happens if a same sex couple is getting benefits from the federal government and they move to a state that doesn't recognize same sex marriages? That's not fair! All states must recognize same sex marriages. Redefining marriage obviously is not a right.(I am being sarcastic here)

    Let me post your response for you....Nonsense, You are lying, you are being dishonest, you are making a strawman argument, and I don't have to address your points but I am going to say that I did answer them anyway.

  172. Spencer says on Mar 17, 2011 @ 07:51 PM:

    Kstret,

    You have a habit of ignoring what I say and then pretending that I never said it. I do not think same-sex marriage "redefines" marriage (how many times do I need to say this?). Hence, allowing same-sex couples to marry does not amount to a "redefinition" of marriage. But even if I do think marriage should be "redefined" to allow same-sex couples to marry, I have never argued for this position from the premise that "redefining marriage is a right." The same is true with the courts.

    I've also never argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be." The fact that you won't retract your false statement only reflects your level of intellectual honesty. I can't get into a substantive discussion with someone who misrepresents what I say at every turn, and then refuses to correct the misrepresentation.

  173. KStret says on Mar 18, 2011 @ 01:00 PM:

    Spencer,
    What a surprise! you ignored everything I said. You know if you just dismiss what I say as "irrelevant", I am going to ask you why you think that. That will force you to be more specific and if you are more specific, you can't equivocate.

    All you are left to do is make the ridiculous argument that because you never explicitly stated something, that means I am misrepresenting your argument.

    I take it that you think Fencer does not think socialized medicine is a right or that the pot smoker doesn't think smoking pot is a right? I am sorry, I forgot you don't answer questions.

    What is the judicial rational to allow same sex marriage? It violates the equal protection clause of 14th amendment. It is unconstitutional to deny marriage to same sex couples.In other words, they think same sex marriage is a right. Their judicial rationale dictates that it has to be a right if it is unconstitutional. Why? because it is unconstitutional not to apply laws uniformly.

    In this case straight people can get married but gay couples can not. That is to say, marriage must be applied uniformly.

    Are they changing the definition of marriage? Yes and here is where their rationale makes no sense. If not allowing same sex couples to redefine marriage is unconstitutional, it must also be unconstitutional not to allow other groups the constitutional right of redefining marriage. However, the judges are just redefining marriage to the definition they like.

    They are limiting the new definition of marriage to two people. They are discriminating against polygamists and anyone else who wants to define marriage how they want.

    By agreeing with this, you have to agree that redefining marriage is a right even though you are attempting to avoid it.

  174. Spencer says on Mar 18, 2011 @ 01:11 PM:

    Kstret,

    I see I need to repost what I previously wrote.

    ----------------
    You have a habit of ignoring what I say and then pretending that I never said it. I do not think same-sex marriage "redefines" marriage (how many times do I need to say this?). Hence, allowing same-sex couples to marry does not amount to a "redefinition" of marriage. But even if I do think marriage should be "redefined" to allow same-sex couples to marry, I have never argued for this position from the premise that "redefining marriage is a right." The same is true with the courts.

    I've also never argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be." The fact that you won't retract your false statement only reflects your level of intellectual honesty. I can't get into a substantive discussion with someone who misrepresents what I say at every turn, and then refuses to correct the misrepresentation.
    ---------------

    "You know if you just dismiss what I say as "irrelevant", I am going to ask you why you think that. "

    "All you are left to do is make the ridiculous argument that because you never explicitly stated something, that means I am misrepresenting your argument."

    That would be a ridiculous argument, but I never made it. I never argued that because I never explicitly stated something, that means it isn't part of my argument.

    In post Mar 16, 2011 @ 07:04 PM, I didn't just say your remark was "irrelevant." I went on to say why. The fact that you ignored my explanation is your problem, not mine.

  175. KStret says on Mar 18, 2011 @ 06:17 PM:

    Spencer,
    Let's play the attempting to nail jello to the wall game:
    Is not allowing same sex marriage a violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment? To put it another way, is not allowing same sex marriage unconstitutional?

    "I do not think same-sex marriage "redefines" marriage (how many times do I need to say this?). Hence, allowing same-sex couples to marry does not amount to a "redefinition" of marriage."

    What has has the definition of marriage been since America's inception? What was the definition of marriage in the UK before leaving for the new world? One man and one woman. By saying that marriages now two men and two woman, you are redefining marriage and it doesn't matter what you think. That is a fact.

  176. Spencer says on Mar 18, 2011 @ 06:58 PM:

    Kstret,

    Let's first resolve a preliminary issue. Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

  177. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 10:29 AM:

    Spencer,
    You are not dictating to me what questions you will or will not answer. I have addressed your question many times. Go back and read my response. Are you capable of answering a simple question?

    Is not allowing same sex marriage unconstitutional?

  178. Spencer says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 10:40 AM:

    Kstret,

    It's a question of integrity. I refuse to engage in a substantive discussion with you here if you insist on blatantly misrepresenting my arguments. So I'll ask again:

    Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

  179. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 01:21 PM:

    Spencer,
    "It's a question of integrity."

    Integrity has nothing to do with this. You are in the same position that you were in during the abortion debate. You could either accept all distinctions as being valid, in which case you would have to accept the argument that a member of NAMBLA could be for the right to watch child porn but not be for people actually watching child porn or admit that you were cherry picking the distinctions that you like.

    What did you do? You ran away. Is that how a person of integrity acts? We must have different definitions of integrity.

    You can not answer my question. You are in a position where you have to answer Yes. However, if you answer yes that not allowing same sex marriage is unconstitutional, you are saying that same sex marriage is a constitutional right. You can't do that.

    If you answer no, that means you disagree with most of the decisions to allow same sex marriage and you can't do that either. Your position all along has been that you agree with the decisions. You will also have no leg to stand on because you support judges forcing same sex marriage on society.

    This means that I am correct by classifying your position as redefining marriage as a right.

    All you can do to avoid this is cry strawman coupled with your semantics game.

  180. Spencer says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 01:35 PM:

    Kstret,

    Answering your questions isn't a problem for me. However, dialoguing with someone who repeatedly engages in blatant misrepresentation is. I'll ask again: Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

    You KNOW I never made anything like the above argument, so why won't you retract your false claim that I did? I'm forced to conclude it's because you lack intellectual integrity.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  181. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 01:59 PM:

    Spencer,
    You can not answer my question and you will not. You are in the same position you were in the abortion debate.

  182. Spencer says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 02:12 PM:

    Kstret,

    I'll ask again: Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

    You KNOW I never made anything like the above argument, so why won't you retract your false claim that I did? I'm forced to conclude it's because you lack intellectual integrity.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  183. robaylesbury says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 03:53 PM:

    Spencer, misrepresentations are sadly the norm rather than the exception with this guy. There's no value in engaging with him any more. He's lied on more than one occasion and re-imagines what we say to the point where it ceases to resemble anything we ever posted. I think leaving him to it and allowing others to form their own opinions on his conduct is the way to go.

  184. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 10:57 PM:

    Spencer,
    Why did you drop the other "misrepresentation" of same sex marriage being a right? Why not throw that in too?

    "Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? "

    You were in equivocation mode this whole time and attempting to say as little as possible so you would not get trapped.

    This then allows you to accuse all arguments of being strawman arguments while playing the semantics game.

    What rationale did you use and what arguments did you make to support your position?

    You don't think it is justified to define marriage as one man or one woman. So what?

    Would the supreme court take that argument seriously? No. So, you are not making a case to justify your position that a judge can impose same sex marriage on on the culture.

    If you are not going to make a legal argument, you should be fine with letting the people decide how they want to define marriage or become an activist and go with a ballot referendum or get your legislatures to pass your agenda. You do not want to do that. You think a judge can pass same sex marriage from the bench.

    If you are not providing a judicial rationale to impose sex sex marriage on the culture but you are saying the culture should be forced to allow same sex marriage by a judge, what are you saying? You are saying that your opinion trumps mine. What is another why of saying that? I should be forced to accept same sex marriage because you think it's a good idea. We should have same sex marriage because you say we should.

    You have been equivocating. You have never said that redefining marriage is a right but you have agreed that same sex marriage can be passed by a judge.

    What did most of the judges that legislated from the bench say? That it is unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage. If it is unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage, redefining marriage has to be a right. By asking you if it is unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage, you are stuck.

    If you think you are going to get away with equivocating, accusing me of making a strawman argument, not giving legal rationale for your position, and then turning around and say that it is unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage, you are sadly mistaken.

    You are attempting one of two things here.


    1. You are dropping the strawman charge of classifying your position as redefining as a right because you never said it was. If you think that you are going to answer yes and get away with it as if you haven't been vehemently protesting this whole time, that is not going to happen.

    2. You will answer yes and try to wiggle out of it. It is is unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage, but that doesn't mean it a right. Even though you are changing the definition of marriage, you are not really changing the definition of marriage. Both positions are self contradictory.

  185. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 11:02 PM:

    Rob,
    I am sorry, how is pointing out that your argument that all morals are relative is contradictory to your point that a culture that accepts homosexuality is more evolved than one stones homosexuals to death, a misrepresentation?

    If all morals are relative the culture that doesn't stone gays should be not better or worse than the one that does.

  186. Spencer says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 11:02 PM:

    Kstret,

    "Why did you drop the other "misrepresentation" of same sex marriage being a right? Why not throw that in too?"

    Don't worry, I haven't forgotten about that one. But I figure it's best to deal with one misrepresentation at a time.

    "You were in equivocation mode this whole time and attempting to say as little as possible so you would not get trapped."

    I'll ask again: Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

    You KNOW I never made anything like the above argument, so why won't you retract your false claim that I did? I'm forced to conclude it's because you lack intellectual integrity.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  187. KStret says on Mar 20, 2011 @ 11:36 PM:

    Spencer,
    The answer to your question can be found in my last post. Why not deal with the same sex marriage being constitutional question? By answering a simple yes or no question we can clear that up right away.

    Is it unconstitutional not to allow same sex marriage? You have to answer yes. Which means that redefining marriage has to be a right regardless of if you want to answer the question or not. Unless you go with the 14th amendment justified discrimination clause defense that isn't there.

  188. Spencer says on Mar 21, 2011 @ 05:00 AM:

    Kstret,

    Actually, you did not answer my question. I'll ask again: Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

    You KNOW I never made anything like the above argument, so why won't you retract your false claim that I did? I'm forced to conclude it's because you lack intellectual integrity.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  189. KStret says on Mar 22, 2011 @ 10:34 PM:

    Spencer,
    I did answer your question.

    Tom Tomlin is constantly saying negative and insulting things about Brad Bradley. At a party Tom attempted to get into a fight with Brad but it was broken up before anything happened. If Tom never stated the exact phrase that he disliked Brad, would it misrepresentation to say that Tom dislikes Brad?

  190. Spencer says on Mar 24, 2011 @ 06:12 PM:

    Kstret,

    "I did answer your question."

    No, you did not. I asked a straightforward yes/no question, and you chose not to answer. You know the answer; you just don't want to admit when when you're wrong (I have a better understanding of your character by now).

    I'll ask again: Have I ever argued as follows: same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made this argument? Yes or No?

    You KNOW I never made anything like the above argument, so why won't you retract your false claim that I did? I'm forced to conclude it's because you lack intellectual integrity.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  191. KStret says on Mar 27, 2011 @ 01:59 PM:

    Spencer,
    Why didn't you answer my question on the analogy I used? Is it a misrepresentation to state the Tom dislikes Brad because he never said those exact words? You will not answer the question because you are using that same line of reasoning in the question you are asking me.

    Your position takes you to the exact same place of dictating to society that a marriage is one women or man married to another woman or man, 5 men and 5 women, one women and 5 men, or one man and 5 women. You can not equivocate around that.All you can do is stick your fingers in your ears, close your eyes, and cut and paste the same thing.

  192. Spencer says on Mar 27, 2011 @ 03:51 PM:

    Kstret,

    Your analogy has no relevance to the current issue. Are you claiming that I HAVE made the following argument? Same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made anything like this argument? Yes or No?

    If you say yes, then you are a liar. Show me where I made anything like the above argument. If no, then retract your claim that I did.

    We'll proceed forward once you retract your misrepresentations. That's how it'll work from now on.

  193. KStret says on Mar 27, 2011 @ 09:56 PM:

    Spencer,
    "Your analogy has no relevance to the current issue."

    Here is what happens when you veer away from cutting and pasting the same response:

    Why does it have no relevance, Spencer? I think it does. Once again I ask you, why does your opinion trump mine? If you can't answer the question why it has no relevance, what you are saying is because you say it doesn't.

  194. Spencer says on Mar 27, 2011 @ 10:20 PM:

    Kstret,

    Last chance, or I'm done with this discussion. Have I ever made anything like the following argument: Same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be?" Have I ever made anything resembling this argument? Yes or no?

    We both know that the answer is 'no,' so why won't you admit it? Why won't you retract your false claim that I made the above argument?

  195. KStret says on Mar 27, 2011 @ 11:35 PM:

    "Why won't you retract your false claim that I made the above argument?"

    That would be the equivalent of arguing that even though Tom was constantly saying negative/insulting things about Brad and attacked him, that it would be a misrepresentation to say that Tom dislikes Brad because Tom never said those exact words.

    He attacked him, he doesn't need to say the exact phrase. It would be asinine to make that argument. That is the argument you are making.

    This is why you wouldn't answer the the question about the misrepresentation and you were unable to explain why the analogy has no relevance.

    Since you were incapable to explain why the analogy has no relevance, your reasoning has to be because you say so. You get to determine what is relevant and I don't. That sounds kind of like what you are saying with same sex marriage.

    The bottom line is, your position takes you to the exact same place of dictating to society that a marriage is one women or man married to another woman or man, 5 men and 5 women, one women and 5 men, or one man and 5 women, that all logic chains to allow same sex marriage end up.

    There is no where else for you to go. There are no arguments you can make, you can't equivocate, and you can't use one word to dismiss what I say. In this case, you can not be pinned down to one position or given an either or choice that you don't like. You can only dig your heels in and repeatedly ask the same question.

  196. Spencer says on Mar 28, 2011 @ 05:28 AM:

    Okay, we're done here then. Once again, you've proven yourself to be a dishonest debater, incapable of admitting when you've clearly misrepresented my position. You know I never made anything like the argument you attributed to me, and yet you refuse to retract it. I have NEVER argued as follows (whether in these words or not): Same-sex marriage should be allowed because "a minority of people say it should be."

    Since we starting debating each other, your lying habits have gotten worse. Have the last word, since that's clearly your only goal here.

  197. robaylesbury says on Mar 28, 2011 @ 07:30 AM:

    He will, Spencer. But don't worry. Nobody will be able to understand it.

  198. KStret says on Mar 29, 2011 @ 10:32 AM:

    Spencer,
    "Okay, we're done here then. Once again, you've proven yourself to be a dishonest debater, incapable of admitting when you've clearly misrepresented my position. You know I never made anything like the argument you attributed to me, and yet you refuse to retract it. "

    Does an honest debater refuse to address points and pretend that points haven't been addressed? If I am dishonest, it would follow that it would be dishonest to say the Tom dislikes Brad because he never said those exact words. However, Tom was saying negative things about Brad and attempted to get into a fight with him.

    I never said that I was conservative. If you pointed that out, would it be honest for me to dig my heels in and argue that you are misrepresenting my position because I never said those exact words? That would be dishonest on my part.

    What was you response to that point? That the "analogy has no relevance." Why does it have no relevance? You refused to answer that question.

    Does an honest debater argue that something has no relevance and not explain why? Does an honest debate have a fascistic mindset and think that they get to decide what is relevant and what isn't?

    Does an honest debater make their position vague and equivocate based on the response they get? That is your primary debate tactic. Would be honest for me to make my political opinions vague and equivocate between conservative and libertarian positions? No and that is exactly what you did during the abortion debate. Then you were trapped between two positions that you didn't like. Does an honest debater do things like that?

    Are you being honest in our other debate about the AOE? You keep pretending that my argument only pertained to free will. Even though I have point out that wasn't true at least three times, you keep making the same argument.

    By accusing me of lying what you are saying is that I do not really believe that your position amounts to same sex marriage being a right and that not allowing same-sex marriage is discriminatory because minority of people say it is. However, you just made that exact argument in determining that my analogy had no relevance. Why did it have no relevance? Because you said it doesn't.

    Spencer, It is transparently obvious that there is no where for you to go.If you were forced into two positions you didn't like, you would just disappear. However, you are not trapped between two positions but if you go any further you will be forced into one position.

    In order to get around that, you are making a ridiculous argument by playing games with semantics. When the same line of reasoning is applied to another subject, you clearly don't want to deal with the ramifications of the flawed reasoning. You did the same thing during the abortion debate.

    None of this pointless arguing is going to change the fact that your position takes you to the exact same place of dictating to society that a marriage is one women or man married to another woman or man, 5 men and 5 women, one women and 5 men, or one man and 5 women, that all logic chains to allow same sex marriage end up.

  199. KStret says on Mar 29, 2011 @ 10:39 AM:

    Rob,
    If you don't understand a point I made, I would be happy to clear it up for you. What did I say that you don't understand?

  200. Warm Little Pond says on Apr 27, 2011 @ 06:06 PM:

    Can you say slippery slope fallacy? He really just said that if we allow gay marriage to happen then there's no telling where these socially constructed partnerships will end. He then said it would open the door for people marrying children or animals. It really shows how he thinks of gay people when he thinks that homosexuality is only a hop, skip and a jump away from bestiality. The reason that gay marriage is nothing like marriage between a man and a child or animal is that children and animals can't give meaningful consent.

    Also, even if gay relationships don't tend to last as long as heterosexual ones (which i think is completely false since I know many gay couples who have been together for a long time) who is Craig to say that they should be denied marriage? Where does he get off dictating whether or not two people have a strong enough bond to be wed? William Craig is showing a real incapacity to think through this issue without his Jesus goggles.

  201. Thomas says on Apr 28, 2011 @ 01:37 PM:

    Warm Little Pond,

    What should the deffinition of marriage be changed to? What studies show that gay couples stay together longer? Where do you get off chainging the diffinition of marriage that has been the definition that society has operated under for thousands of years. What goggles to you think through this issue with?

  202. KStret says on Apr 28, 2011 @ 04:38 PM:

    Warm Little Pond,
    "Can you say slippery slope fallacy?"

    It is not a fallacy at all. The logic chain that most same sex marriage proponents use is to argue that same-sex marriage is a right. In other words, redefining marriage is a right.

    If refining marriage is a right, everyone has the same right to redefine marriage. If you limit redefining marriage to only gay couples, you are guilty of the same discrimination that you accuse the culture of by not allowing gay couples to get married. The logic chain to allow same sex marriage either boils down to hypocrisy or a society where marriage means whatever a person wants it to mean.

    If a large group of men and women give "meaningful consent" they should have the right to all be married to each other. If anyone disagrees with that, they do not have the right to have a seat at the table to decide what the definition of marriage is.

    Why is it, that you are not vehemently arguing in favor of polygamy?

    "who is Craig to say that they should be denied marriage? Where does he get off dictating whether or not two people have a strong enough bond to be wed?"

    If you want to change the definition of marriage that has had the same definition for a very long time, the burden is on you to explain why we should change the definition.

    Who are you to dictate to the rest of the culture that we have to allow same sex marriage when the majority of the culture does not want to go that way?

    Having the position that we should keep the definition of marriage the same is not the equivalent of arguing that same sex relationships should be banned.

  203. Rayburne F. says on Apr 28, 2011 @ 06:00 PM:

    The point, I believe, Thomas is making is that one's definition of marriage depends on the lens or goggles through which we see the origin and function/purpose of marriage throughout human history; in truth, one's view of human origins; for example, whether the first human couple originated from an evolutionary process, or through divine creation. Here is why:

    First and foremost, although in all socities marriage is a recognized and regulated human institution, it is not a human invention. Marriage is God's idea, not ours. When we look back on the creation account (Genesis),God has established marriage from the very beginning of creation. Indeed, the creation of man (Adam) on the sixth day in the image of God as male and female,which, as the parallelism in Genesis 1:27 indicates, is the generic name inclusive of "male and female," is God's crowning glory, since it involves moral, rational and spiritual distinctions.

    Marriage, which God established from the very beginning of creation, is thus a picture of the relationship which exists between God and Israel, and between Christ and His bride--the Church.


    For the Christian, you cannot seperate the creation of the first humans, Adam and Eve, and the divine institution of marriage. They are inextricably connected. The apostle Paul built his theology on the historicity of Adam and the Fall (1 Corinthians 15: 22-58; Romans 5; 1 Tim. 2:13-14) and Jesus predicated marriage on the historical truth of the supernatural creation of Adam and Eve–the first humans, made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26-27), and not an evolutionary development from some race of hairy anthropids (ape-like men/women). When Jesus referred to marriage, instituted by God, and the creation of Adam and Eve, he accepted both as historical fact (Matthew 19:4; Mark 10:6).

    Moreover,this is not a fringe view. Many noted scholars, including Oxford fellow Dr. John Lennox, hold that Genesis is real history, denying both chemical and biological “macro-evolution”–that all life forms evolved from a common ancestor (Whatever side you believe in the ongoing debate, one thing is certain: evidence does not speak for itself; it must be interpreted according to the paradigm (world view) which you bring to bear on the evidence.

    Third, man was created as a sexual being, consisting of a male and a female counterpart. This means that though men and women are sexually and functionally different, they complement and complete each other in the sexual act of union and in their relationship to God and each other as husband and wife,male and female, created in the image of God (a picture of Christ in relationship to His Bride--the church)--which is why God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, and why the institution of marriage entails much more than just the aspect of procreation, as many Christians believe.

    Rather, marriage, as a divinely established permanent covenant of companionship, was God's design and solution to Adam's (and humanity's) problem of loneliness (Gen. 2:18)--and we have no right to change it,though legal courts and human governments may rule otherwise.

    If marriage were of human origin, then human beings would have a right to set it aside. But since God instituted marriage, only He has the right to do so. He has told us that marriage will not be dispensed with until the life to come (Mark 12:25; Luke 17:26-27).

    God not only ordained and established marriage as a sacred institution, He established definite and precise guidlines in His Word as His will for married couples; for example, distinction between male and female roles, which is not based on superiority/ or inferiority of one to another,or of manipulation in any way,as wrongly alleged, but rather on the original creation order through self-sacrificing love. Such a relationship, properly understood, is one of mutual equality and respect for each other. The wife's submission to her husband as head (a picture of Christ's submission to the Father), as a voluntary act of obedience to God's command, is not without reason or cause. God has commanded that her husband love her and respect her (Ephesians 5).

    For the believer,any definition of marriage that does not take into consideration these biblical qualities and guidelines as God's will for human married couples is
    without proper foundation, regardless of what legal courts and governments may say to change the definition of marriage.

    So how do we define marriage:

    John Stott, renown Anglical theologian, defines it: "Marriage is an exclusive heterosexual covenant between one man and one woman, ordained and sealed by God, preceded by a Public leaving of parents, consummated in sexual union, issuing in a permanent mutually supportive partnership, and normally crowned by the gift of children."

  204. Rayburne F. says on Apr 29, 2011 @ 09:08 AM:

    I think my previous comment was timely and very appropriate on the auspicious occasion of the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton. My wife and I watched the marriage ceremony at 3:00 AM, televised from Westminister Abbey, and I really enjoyed their exchange of wedding vows, which was very traditional, and the short homily by the archbishop of England (I presume), emphasizing the divine nature of marriage in their love and commitment to one another as husband and wife, and invoking God's blessing on the procreative nature of their union.

  205. robaylesbury says on Apr 29, 2011 @ 03:09 PM:

    Archbishop Of Cantebury. Comes over as a very sincere and decent man. He's also an expert on
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky.

  206. Thomas says on Apr 30, 2011 @ 01:36 AM:

    Rayburn F.

    You are right. I am addressing the historical definition of marriage. But I am also addressing the presupposition in Warm Little Pond’s post that his view is objective while Dr. Craig is bringing a subjective view to this issue. We all have a worldview that we see through, even Warm Little Pond. I am also addressing the accusation that Craig is being arrogant because he wants to defend a specific definition of marriage. But Warm Little Pond seems oblivious to his own arrogance in wanting to change the definition.

  207. Rayburne F. says on Apr 30, 2011 @ 11:51 AM:

    I understand that, Thomas, and I agree. Your points about Warm Litte Pond (sounds like a good place to fish)also having a world view and being somewhat arrogant in critizing Dr. Craig's defence of traditional marriage (a position the majority favour),while advocating that we change this definition to accomodate same-sex marriage are well taken. When one concedes the historic (and biblical) origin and function/purpose of marriage, a sacred institution created by God, not man, one properly understands that he/she does not have any human right (moral or legal) to redefine and change the definition of marriage and the family, ordained and sanctified by God, as the fundamental unit and foundation of human society, to include same-sex couples, those favouring pologamy, etc.--and that applies to those in position of authority in legal courts and governments, who legislate their idea of marriage and morality on the rest of society, whether or not the magority of citizens want it. Having said this, this does not mean, as KStret has pointed out, that keeping the definition of marriage the same implies that same-sex relationships should be banned:"Having the position that we should keep the definition of marriage the same is not the equivalent of arguing that same sex relationships should be banned."

  208. Alexander says on May 25, 2011 @ 02:30 PM:

    Dr. Craig is committing a number of fallacies in this case. The number of gay relationships that fail or succeed is completely irrelevant to whether or not they should be allow to marry, if this is so then heterosexual marriage is in trouble as well.

    It is also worth pointing out, and this may have been an honest mistake, that the Obama administration has only stopped enforcing Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, which oversteps the authority of the federal government. The point of DOMA is to protect the states and giving them the ability to make their own laws, but Section 3 defines marriage as between one man and one woman on the federal level, which violates state sovereignty as outlined in the Constitution.

    Dr. Craig's argument is surprisingly bad and he is obviously outside of his expertise. None of the things he mentions demonstrate why these individuals should not have the same freedoms we do, which is guaranteed in the Constitution. He even mentioned a man wanting to marry his dog!? This is ridiculous. Craig is not worried about men marrying their dogs, he is worried about gays marrying.

    The CATO Institute's case for marriage equality:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NiNTlohUwU&feature=feedu