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History  1

1971 Baker v. Nelson in Minnesota, the first same-sex marriage case brought in the United States, is ruled against plaintiffs Richard John Baker and James Michael McConnell.
1975 -- Two men from Phoenix are granted a marriage license by a county clerk. This license is later revoked.
1975 -- The County Clerk of Boulder CO, Cela Rorex issues Dave Zamora and Ave McCord a marriage license, on advice of the states' DA, This causes a month-long rush on the clerk's office by same-sex couples seeking marriage licenses, until the state Attorney General voided the D.A.'s recommendation. All licenses were later revoked.
1976-1985 In this period there seems to have been little action around same-sex marriage. One reason may have been that until then the lesbian and gay movement was on an upswing, The backlash associated with Anita Bryant and her successful attack on gay rights in 1977 lead to some need to focus energies on protection of gains already made. 

1986 -- The ACLU's Executive Director and Board of Directors say their organization will seek to eliminate legal barriers preventing gays from marrying.
1989 -- The Bar Association of San Francisco calls for gay marriages, and in Chicago, two journalists for gay publications, Rex Wockner and Paul Varnell, file complaints with the Illinois Department of Human Rights charging the state with sex discrimination because it refuses to allow gay marriages.
1989 A Time magazine poll reports 69% of respondents disapprove of gay marriages; 23% approve, 8% are unsure.
1991 -- The Massachusetts Coalition for Lesbian and Gay Civil Rights launches a campaign to pass a gay marriage bill. The group found a handful of Democratic co-sponsors.
1992 -- In a Newsweek survey, 58% of respondents disapprove of gay marriage; 35% approve, and 7% are unsure. - quite a change in attitude from the poll conducted three years earlier

1993 -- Baehr v. Lewin [21], a landmark same-sex marriage case in Hawaii, rules that the state's refusal to issue marriage licenses to three same-sex couples, Joseph Melillo and Pat Lagon, Genora Dancel and Nina Baehr, and Tammy Rodrigues and Antoinette Pregil. Dan Foley is their lawyer, presumptively violates Hawaii's Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) barring discrimination on the basis of sex (a "suspect class" due to the ERA). 
1996 In the second week of May, 1996 the DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT (HR 3396/S 1704) was introduced by Bob Barr (R-GA) in the House and Don Nickles (R-OK) in the Senate, and passed the House in late May 1996. President Clinton, desperately trying to avoid this as an election issue,  signed the bill.

 

PRO 2

It is true that perhaps homosexuals do not fall into the traditional definition of marriage, which includes a man and a woman joined together to form a conventional family. Single mothers and fathers do not necessarily fit the mold either, and yet the love for their children is no less. But to call them anything less than a family would be unjust. What is important in a marriage is love and trust. Marriage is the union of souls, and that cannot be regulated by some act of Congress.

 

CON 2.1

Tolerance is not what homosexual activists are seeking. They are demanding that society elevate homosexuality to the moral level of marriage. When they bring the law into it, they are no longer just minding their own business but imposing it on every single citizen.

 

PRO 3

As recently as 40 years ago, interracial couples could not marry. That kind of ignorance and racism is a horrible blemish on our nation's history. Today, we shudder at such injustice and cannot imagine condoning such a law. Denying homosexuals the right to marry those they love signifies a harsh parallel to that unenlightened time of our past.

 

CON 4

If you are a devout Christian, Jew or Muslim, or merely someone who believes homosexuality is immoral and harmful, and the law declares homosexuality a protected status, then your personal beliefs are now outside civil law.

 

PRO 5

Denying lesbians and gay men the right to marry denies them simple, basic dignity and has serious practical costs as well. Among the practical consequences unique to marriage are the rights to:

CON 6

Businessmen will have to subsidize homosexuality or face legal sanctions. Schoolchildren will have to be taught that homosexuality is the equivalent of marital love. Religious people will be told their beliefs are no longer valid,

 

PRO 7

In 1958 -- the first time interracial marriage polling was conducted -- opposition was far greater than it is to same-sex marriage today. Ninety-four percent of whites disapproved of interracial marriages (Gallup). By contrast, in November 1996, just 56 percent of adults opposed same-sex marriage in a Human Rights Campaign poll

 

CON 7.1

Activists say homosexuality is just like skin color. But there are thousands of former homosexuals, but no former blacks or Hispanics.

 

CON 8

Homosexuality has been discouraged in all cultures because it is inherently wrong and harmful to individuals, families and societies.

 

CON 9

Homosexuals claim that they have difficulty visiting loved ones in hospitals because families have primary visitation rights. Yet an informal survey of hospitals in the Washington, D.C. area and other metro areas reveals that no homosexuals are being denied any visitation rights. A Nexis search of July 2, 1996 also shows no news stories about homosexuals being denied visitation rights. It's a non-issue manufactured to foster the "victim" image that homosexuals use to advance their agenda.

 

CON 10

Businessmen and women would be prosecuted if they failed to offer spousal health benefits to homosexual "spouses". Children would necessarily be taught in schools that homosexual relations represent the moral equivalent of marital love. "Same-sex "marriage" would give a mighty tool to those pushing for adoption of children in homosexual households. Private organizations like the Boy Scouts of America would come under increased pressure to abandon their moral standards.

 

CON 11

Anyone disagreeing with same-sex marriage  would be denounced as a "bigot. 

 

CON 12

Homosexuality is the conduct of engaging in sodomy (homosexual relations) with members of the same sex. This is a clear definition. Civil rights, on the other hand, are also known as “natural rights,” because they are based on things that cannot be changed or chosen. Conduct is not a civil right. The whole idea of civil rights is that our civil government will respect, approve and award protected status to persons who are born with certain unchangeable qualities. This is why civil rights law prohibits discrimination based on race, ethnicity and nationality, sex and age — all immutable characteristics.

 

CON 13

The specific purpose of the law is to restrain and prohibit harmful behavior, because the proper role of good government is to protect society and individuals. For example, it is against the law to murder, steal or lie on the witness stand. It is also against the law to drive drunk, engage in prostitution, do illegal drugs or yell “fire” in a crowded theater. The state has three choices: it can either prohibit harmful conduct, tolerate the conduct, or promote good conduct.

 

PRO 14

Equal rights would include protection for our jobs, our homes and our families. Inheritance taxes are even more of a burden for a gay family.  Our home is in both our names.  If either one of us dies, the other will have to pay inheritance taxes on 1/2 of the value of the home.  Imagine that!  It's our home together but it's as if a friend of ours or a distant relative left it to us.  Ridiculous!

 

PRO 15

the burden of proof is on opponents to gay adoption/marriage/homosexuality in general. american society is founded on the notion of negative liberty (as posited by John Locke), which states basically that the limits of one person's freedoms is only defined by how those freedoms infringe (or not) on other peoples' freedoms. gays to not have to justify what they want or do; conservatives must give good reasons why they should not be allowed to. religion is not a suitable basis for such a reason, because religious doctrine does not direct law in america (so sayeth the separation of church and state). beyond that, there is no scientific (social, physiological, or otherwise) evidence that supports any claim that there is anything wrong with homosexuality, including gays rights to adoption and marriage. when it comes down to it, one always finds conservatives' arguments are predicated not on any logical thought process, but rather on prejudice (disgust, fear, discomfort, whatever). It always comes back to that. All of their logic is specious. they start with a prejudice, and then just search for arguments that superficially support it. that is no way to pursue truth, or a path towards a better society.

So...in reference to marriage specifically, marriage is actually not a bond under God (not necessarily anyways, and certainly not for atheists/agnostics). Rather it is a legal contract recognized by the American courts. Since the judicial process should be separate from religious doctrine, why should a religious position have any bearing on that civil process? Besides, not all religions even oppose gay marriage or homosexuality in general. When the Mormon Church tried to represent all of religion against the gay activists in Hawaii, a Buddhist sect stepped in and reminded them it has more members then them in Hawaii, and has no problem with same-sex marriage.

Finally, the notion that it is unnatural is fallacious. Roughly 1/3 of known species in the world exhibit gay/bisexual behavior, including same-sex coupling for life. Ask an animal behaviorist.
Posted on Forum by AlexanderTheGreat

 

 

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