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Don’t blame me for gay teen suicides

October 22nd, 2010

By MAGGIE GALLAGHER

Do I have blood on my hands?

Major gay-rights groups are saying so. Each of us who opposes gay mar riage, they say, is responsible for the terrible and tragic suicides of gay teens that recently hit the news.

San Francisco just filed a brief in the Prop 8 case, saying 7 million Californians who voted to protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman are responsible for high rates of suicide among gay people.

Evan Wolfson, one of the leading architects of the gay marriage movement, calls me out personally: “National Organization for Marriage Chairman Maggie Gallagher is among those who, with reckless disregard, attacks LGBT youth.”

Former Clinton adviser Richard Socarides told the AP these suicides demonstrate why gays should be allowed to marry: “When you speak out for full equality now, as opposed to partial equality, or incremental equality, you send a message to everybody, including the bullies, that everyone is equal.”

Apparently, either we all agree that gay marriage is good or gay children will die.

It’s a horrific charge to levy in response to some pretty horrifying stories. Will gay marriage really reduce or prevent gay teen suicide? I felt a moral obligation to find out.

Massachusetts has been tracking gay high school students for a decade using the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey.

LGBT teens were roughly four times as likely as other students to attempt suicide in the last year. They’re also about twice as likely to report being in a physical fight at school, three times more likely to say they were injured by a weapon and almost four times as likely to say they missed school because they felt physically unsafe, compared to other teens.

These kinds of negative outcomes are consistent with the idea that anti-gay bullying is mainly responsible for the higher suicide rate among gay teens. But as I kept reading, I kept finding pieces of the puzzle that don’t seem to fit the “it’s homophobia pulling the trigger” narrative.

Gay students are also more than twice as likely to report having had sexual intercourse before age 13 — that is, to be sexually abused as children. They are three times as likely to report being the victims of dating violence, and nearly four times as likely to report forced sexual contact. A majority of LGBT teens in Massachusetts reported using illegal drugs in the last month. (Perhaps most oddly, gay teens are also three times as likely as non-gay teens to report either becoming pregnant or getting someone else pregnant.)

Forced sex, childhood sexual abuse, dating violence, early unwed pregnancy, substance abuse — could these be a more important factor in the increased suicide risk of LGBT high schoolers than anything people like me ever said?

The deeper you look, the more you see kids who are generally unprotected in horrifying ways that make it hard to believe — if you are really focusing on these kids’ well-being — that gay marriage is the answer.

And that’s exactly what the Youth Risk Behavior data also shows: In 2001, gay teens in Massachussetts were almost four times more likely to have attempted suicide (31 percent versus 8 percent). In 2007 — after four years of legalized gay marriage in that state — gay teens were still about four times more likely to attempt suicide than non-gay teens (29 percent versus 6 percent).

Whether you are looking at their faces or looking at the statistics, one thing is clear: These kids need help, real help. They should not become a mere rhetorical strategy, a plaything in our adult battles.

Each of these teens is a child of God. And each one deserves better from all of us than becoming a “teachable moment” in someone else’s culture war.

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/don_blame_me_for_gay_teen_suicides_l1Wt32kEJFFve2SzkjbpYP?CMP=OTC-rss&FEEDNAME=#ixzz137RlUzSA

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  1. Sean
    October 22nd, 2010 at 21:05 | #1

    “Apparently, either we all agree that gay marriage is good or gay children will die.”

    Well, no, but we can all certainly agree that continuing to condemn gay people by ensuring that their committed relationships go unrecognized by the state is a horrible message to send to vulnerable young gay people, wrestling with their sexual identities in a homophobic society. Evidently, the persistent attempts by hate groups like NOM to marginalize gay people leaves some gay teens so distraught that they take their own lives. Ms. Gallagher’s legacy is a most unfortunate one.

  2. October 23rd, 2010 at 07:54 | #2

    Sean: > “[...] their committed relationships go unrecognized by the state is a horrible message to send to vulnerable young [...]”

    Have suicides gone down in states where CU’s, DP’s or RB’s are available? (Personal contracts are honored in all the other states).

  3. Ruth
    October 23rd, 2010 at 11:20 | #3

    Well stated, Ms. Gallagher.
    Thank you for your call to action on behalf of these precious, broken ones.

  4. Sean
    October 23rd, 2010 at 13:18 | #4

    I dunno OnLawn, why? Do you have a point? I do. My point is that, every piece of rhetoric, every policy, every attempt to marginalize gay people contributes to the homophobia that leads to violence against gay teens and adults and sometimes leads to gay suicide.

    Your public pronouncements against equal rights for gay Americans hurts children. That’s a fact. Everyone seems to get it but you, Maggie Gallagher, Brian Brown and a motley crew of other homophobes.

    Grow a conscience. For once, put the needs of children ahead of your own egotistical need to feel superior to gay people. Children’s lives are at stake. I understand Gallagher’s and Brown’s motivations: they earn a living promoting homophobia and appear to have little concern about the collateral damage they leave in their wake. That’s for them and their God to deal with as appropriate. What about you? Are in you also in the employ of the hate-gay-for-pay industry? I’d like to know.

  5. Mark
    October 23rd, 2010 at 13:45 | #5

    Ms. Gallagher: “Do I have blood on my hands?”

    Yes, yes you do.

    When good people spend at least half of the time condemning anti-gay bullying as they do condemning same sex marriage, then I won’t be so hard on them.

    “Forced sex, childhood sexual abuse, dating violence, early unwed pregnancy, substance abuse — could these be a more important factor in the increased suicide risk of LGBT high schoolers than anything people like me ever said?”

    When people condemn gays and lesbians, when they work so hard to deny them a loving relationship, when they are so quick to defend themselves after such events as these suicides, then they are contributing to the suicides. All these things Ms. Gallagher lists (whether true or not) coupled with all the anti-gay speech could push a teen over the edge.

    “Each of these teens is a child of God. And each one deserves better from all of us than becoming a “teachable moment” in someone else’s culture war.”

    Exactly. So why are you coming out so defensively instead of helping other teens who may be contemplating a similar fate? Why are you working SO hard to find other causes rather than your own speech? Because these kids mean very little to you other than using them for YOUR platform. You should be ashamed of yourself!

  6. Sean
    October 23rd, 2010 at 21:50 | #6

    It would be awesome if Maggie Gallagher would do an “It Gets Better!” video, to let gay teens know that they’re perfectly normal and worthy. I doubt she’d do it, she’s such a homophobe. But it would be a start to fixing all the damage she’s done.

  7. Mark
    October 24th, 2010 at 06:41 | #7

    Oh, and there is this study that shows Ms. Gallagher’s actions do have a negative effect.

    http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=114165

  8. Ruth
    October 25th, 2010 at 01:18 | #8

    Sin always leads to death.
    Anyone who leads a young person into sin leads them to death.
    God’s way is life.
    Choose life.

  9. October 25th, 2010 at 10:54 | #9

    Wow, Mark and Sean are in a real emotional march.

    Its bad enough that people commit suicide, and no wonder.

    Sean calls CU’s and DP’s as “margionalizing”. They tell their own people that affirming marriage (or affirming the rights that marriage is meant to protect) is only keeping them as second class citizens.

    I should go back and show where Mark and Sean have happily named large groups of couples — even same-sex couples — that should be “second class citizens” in their book. Their extremist and fundamentalist positions justified by stating that the majority doesn’t like them, so its okay to do that.

    I noted above where Sean’s emotional appeal even stepped away from reality,

    On Lawn :
    Sean: > “[...] their committed relationships go unrecognized by the state is a horrible message to send to vulnerable young [...]”
    Have suicides gone down in states where CU’s, DP’s or RB’s are available? (Personal contracts are honored in all the other states).

    Its sad, very sad, that people die over this. It is just as sad when fundamentalist Islamists take what is otherwise a religion of peace, and turn its members to suicide (and I’m not just talking about the suicide bombers) and other acts of violence against themselves and others. Their rhetoric is also an attempt to paint themselves as victims, to justify the harm they wish to do to others, and the totalitarian control they wish to extend to others.

    Its sad to see such violence and hurt in the world. I wish Mark and Sean would retreat from their positions of pitting people against each other, I wish they would whole heartedly accept comprimises rather than spurn them with inflamatory and self-denigrating rhetoric.

  10. Sean
    October 25th, 2010 at 11:54 | #10

    Chairm says:

    “I should go back and show where Mark and Sean have happily named large groups of couples — even same-sex couples — that should be “second class citizens” in their book. Their extremist and fundamentalist positions justified by stating that the majority doesn’t like them, so its okay to do that.”

    Sean has never named large groups of couples who should be treated as second-class citizens, happily or otherwise.

    “I wish Mark and Sean would retreat from their positions of pitting people against each other”

    Nope, that was the Straight Supremacy Campaign that decided to pit people against each other, render gay Americans second-class citizens, as well as the children they’re raising. Gays and lesbians are just trying to get equal treatment. The leaders and followers of the Straight Supremacy movement aren’t at all pleased with that, and are fighting back, even to the absurd point of acting like THEY’RE the victims! Hiding behind religion is the oldest trick in the book and thankfully, our courts are taking notice.

    The outcome is so obvious: equality for gay Americans and a big black eye for Christianity! It doesn’t get any better!

    “I wish they would whole heartedly accept comprimises (sic) rather than spurn them with inflamatory (sic) and self-denigrating rhetoric.”

    And I wish Christians would compromise on their free speech rights and go crawl back under their rocks and shut up!

  11. Mark
    October 25th, 2010 at 15:42 | #11

    On Lawn: To paraphrase what you said: It is just as sad when fundamentalist CHRISTIANS take what is otherwise a religion of peace, and turn its members to suicide (and I’m not just talking about the suicide bombers) and other acts of violence against themselves and others. Their rhetoric is also an attempt to paint themselves as victims, to justify the harm they wish to do to others, and the totalitarian control they wish to extend to others.

    See? It works this way too.

    “I wish they would whole heartedly accept comprimises (sic) rather than spurn them with inflamatory (sic) and self-denigrating rhetoric.”

    In other words, sit down, shut up and do as we tell you (no matter how wrong it is). But, I would be interested in what “compromises” I am somehow spurning.

  12. October 25th, 2010 at 16:39 | #12

    Mark :
    On Lawn: To paraphrase what you said: It is just as sad when fundamentalist CHRISTIANS take what is otherwise a religion of peace, and turn its members to suicide (and I’m not just talking about the suicide bombers) and other acts of violence against themselves and others. Their rhetoric is also an attempt to paint themselves as victims, to justify the harm they wish to do to others, and the totalitarian control they wish to extend to others.
    See? It works this way too.

    Yes, yes it does. Which only proves my point even further :)

    “I wish they would whole heartedly accept comprimises (sic) rather than spurn them with inflamatory (sic) and self-denigrating rhetoric.”
    In other words, sit down, shut up and do as we tell you (no matter how wrong it is). But, I would be interested in what “compromises” I am somehow spurning.

    Perhaps you need to learn what comprimise means? It can mean you don’t get everything you want. No one does.

  13. October 25th, 2010 at 16:44 | #13

    Sean :
    Sean has never named large groups of couples who should be treated as second-class citizens, happily or otherwise.

    Yes, Sean has noted many groups who he is perfectly happy to keep away from the same benefits that gay couples get, for no rational reason.

    Hence, if that means gay couples are second class citizens, it means those other classes are too.

    Here we see it again, the double standard that gays get the honor of the celebrity status of victimhood, but everyone else gets regular victimhood without any help or recognition from Sean…

    [....] render gay Americans second-class citizens, as well as the children they’re raising. Gays and lesbians are just trying to get equal treatment.

    Yet gays are not the only same-sex couples raising children. We have friends, brothers, sisters, mothers with their daughters, fathers with their sons, all banding together in committed relationships raising children.

    Where is their support, Sean?

    “I wish they would whole heartedly accept comprimises (sic) rather than spurn them with inflamatory (sic) and self-denigrating rhetoric.”
    And I wish Christians would compromise on their free speech rights and go crawl back under their rocks and shut up!

    Yes, I bet you do.

  14. Sean
    October 25th, 2010 at 19:10 | #14

    “Yes, Sean has noted many groups who he is perfectly happy to keep away from the same benefits that gay couples get, for no rational reason.”

    Who?

    “Here we see it again, the double standard that gays get the honor of the celebrity status of victimhood, but everyone else gets regular victimhood without any help or recognition from Sean”

    Well, whoever they are, let them get their own advocate. Sean is merely advocating for the same-sex committed couples currently being denied the constitutional right to have equal treatment under the law.

    “Yet gays are not the only same-sex couples raising children. We have friends, brothers, sisters, mothers with their daughters, fathers with their sons, all banding together in committed relationships raising children. Where is their support, Sean?”

    Are you volunteering to be their advocate? I can’t handle every group in need. I’m concentrating at this point just on the group being denied constitutional rights: gay Americans.

  15. Mark
    October 25th, 2010 at 21:49 | #15

    On Lawn: “Perhaps you need to learn what comprimise (sic) means? It can mean you don’t get everything you want. No one does.”

    Well, not sure what “comprimise” is but, “compromise” is a settlement of differences by mutual concessions; an agreement reached by adjustment of conflicting or opposing claims, principles, etc., by reciprocal modification of demands.

    So, I ask On Lawn again: I would be interested in what “compromises” I am somehow spurning. I see no compromises, I see no agreements.

  16. Mark
    October 25th, 2010 at 21:53 | #16

    Mark : To paraphrase what you said: It is just as sad when fundamentalist CHRISTIANS take what is otherwise a religion of peace, and turn its members to suicide (and I’m not just talking about the suicide bombers) and other acts of violence against themselves and others. Their rhetoric is also an attempt to paint themselves as victims, to justify the harm they wish to do to others, and the totalitarian control they wish to extend to others.
    See? It works this way too.

    On Lawn: Yes, yes it does. Which only proves my point even further

    So On Lawn is saying that all religious fundamentalists (Christians and Muslims alike) destroy others to support the religion they allegedly believe in and then paint themselves as the victim?

    And which point of yours does this prove, On Lawn?

  17. October 26th, 2010 at 09:23 | #17

    Sean once again proudly displays his bias and prejudice…

    Sean :
    “Yes, Sean has noted many groups who he is perfectly happy to keep away from the same benefits that gay couples get, for no rational reason.”
    Who?

    More importantly, who doesn’t that include? Just one, and only one, as we see from the very next statement…

    “Here we see it again, the double standard that gays get the honor of the celebrity status of victimhood, but everyone else gets regular victimhood without any help or recognition from Sean”
    Well, whoever they are, let them get their own advocate. Sean is merely advocating for the same-sex committed couples currently being denied the constitutional right to have equal treatment under the law.

    Lest there be any confusion Sean quickly wraps it up to tell us he only works for the celebrity style victims, and only when they are gay.

    “Yet gays are not the only same-sex couples raising children. We have friends, brothers, sisters, mothers with their daughters, fathers with their sons, all banding together in committed relationships raising children. Where is their support, Sean?”
    Are you volunteering to be their advocate? I can’t handle every group in need. I’m concentrating at this point just on the group being denied constitutional rights: gay Americans.

    Such selectiveness, even when Sean believes that without such recognition they are left out in the cold, they are second class citizens, he is happy to only help one group. Or rather, he’s only happy to raise one group of victims to celebrity status with his inflammatory and emotional (and untrue) rhetoric.

    Mark :
    [...] I would be interested in what “compromises” I am somehow spurning. I see no compromises, I see no agreements.

    Mark has also spurned the notion that any non-gay same-sex couple should be given the same benefits as gay same-sex couples. I’ve offered that as a compromise, an agreement :), that those benefits would help any couple who is committed and raising children together.

    Since Mark spurns that compromise, I suppose that means that Mark doesn’t agree that marriage benefits help committed couples raising children?

    Mark also has spurned CU’s and DP’s which give gay couples (even if he wants to be biased and prejudiced towards them) those benefits. Again, is that him disagreeing that those benefits would help those situations?

    We’ll see. Mark is welcome to answer those questions so we can better know his position.

    Mark :
    So On Lawn is saying that all religious fundamentalists (Christians and Muslims alike [and homosexualists, even though Mark seems to not add them to the category]) destroy others to support the religion they allegedly believe in and then paint themselves as the victim?

    No, but I can hardly blame Mark for not understanding. He’s shown himself to be below average reading comprehension, so I am not suprised he missed the point. Its not about being a fundamentalist, it is about being a fundamentalist who (like some Muslim sects, and some Christian sects, and some Homosexualist sects) …

    [....] take what is otherwise a religion of peace, and turn its members to suicide (and I’m not just talking about the suicide bombers) and other acts of violence against themselves and others. Their rhetoric is also an attempt to paint themselves as victims, to justify the harm they wish to do to others, and the totalitarian control they wish to extend to others.

    And which point of yours does this prove, On Lawn?

    That point :) Feel free to re-read or ask specific questions until you understand it better. I realise it might take you more time than others :)

  18. Sean
    October 26th, 2010 at 11:36 | #18

    OnLawn,

    “Lest there be any confusion Sean quickly wraps it up to tell us he only works for the celebrity style victims, and only when they are gay.”

    I think Sean explained clearly that Sean advocates for same-sex couples, regardless of their celebrity status, because they are the ones whose constitutional rights are being denied. Someone else can better articulate the injustice done to other groups, if necessary. Does everything have to be repeated for you to understand it?

    “Such selectiveness”

    See above. Now I’m a bad guy for not going to bat for one group but not all? This from a guy who advocates a public policy that hurts children??? Incredible.

    Look, OnLawn, I don’t know how much money you make in the hate-gay-for-pay industry but is it really worth it? I mean, you’re hurting gay adults, gay teens are killing themselves and the children being raised by same-sex couples are living less secure lives because their parents can’t get married. Plus these kids, many if not most of whom are straight, are made to think there’s something wrong with their parents.

    Is money really worth it, with these kinds of outcomes???

  19. Mark
    October 26th, 2010 at 13:50 | #19

    On Lawn:” “Mark has also spurned the notion that any non-gay same-sex couple should be given the same benefits as gay same-sex couples”

    Because, On Lawn, there is no such thing as a non-gay same-sex couple. As has been shown to you numerous times. Even though On Lawn said he never said same-sex relationships are identical to same-sex couples, he keeps using it as an argument.

    “Mark also has spurned CU’s and DP’s which give gay couples (even if he wants to be biased and prejudiced towards them) those benefits.”

    On Lawn’s ignorance is showing. CU’s and DP’s do not offer the same benefits of marriage. As has been shown before, there are numerous local, state and federal laws that are not included until these classifications. Here are just a few. Read, and learn:
    http://www.hrc.org/issues/5517.htm

    On Lawn uses a quote by me which he has altered, which, could almost be considered slander as he indicates I said it when in fact I didn’t.
    I know this is hard for On Lawn to understand (since his ability to understand even the simplest of terms as “religion” and “denomination” go right over his head), but homosexuality is not a religion. On Lawn’s attempt to include homosexuals in with religious fundamentalists is, well, ignorant. And notice how many smiley faces On Lawn uses? Shows he is REALLY struggling with his lies.

  20. October 26th, 2010 at 14:29 | #20

    Sean: > I think Sean explained clearly [....]

    Lets look at what Sean clearly explained, plain and simple…

    Sean: >>> I can’t handle every group in need. I’m concentrating at this point just on the group being denied constitutional rights: gay Americans.

    Enough said, Sean doesn’t treat every group in need the same. His preference for gays among all the possible types of same-sex relationships out there was clearly stated.

    Sean: > Someone else can better articulate the injustice done to other groups, if necessary.

    Who’s to say the injustice is different, in fact it is not. The only difference Sean actually noted was their self-proclaimed identity of being gay.

    Sean: > Now I’m a bad guy for not going to bat for one group but not all?

    I don’t know, does that really make you a bad guy?

    Sean: > OnLawn, I don’t know how much money you make in the hate-gay-for-pay industry but is it really worth it?

    I make money in the high-tech information technology sector of the economy. Is the high-tech sector now “hate-gay-for-pay” in Sean’s eyes?

    Too funny.

    Sean: > I mean, you’re hurting gay adults [1], gay teens [2] are killing themselves and the children being raised by same-sex couples are living less secure lives because their parents can’t get married [3].

    1) I support benefits for groups much more inclusive than gay adults. How is that hurting gay adults?

    2) I support telling gay teens that they are free to choose their lifestyle, to have a happy life of their choosing, they are capable of it. How is that causing them to commit suicide?

    3) Their parents, sadly, chose not to get married because one or both decided that their sexual preference (read prejudice) was more important. I can only mourn their decision.

  21. Sean
    October 26th, 2010 at 16:21 | #21

    “Let’s look at what Sean clearly explained, plain and simple…”

    Turn over a new leaf, did you? That’s great.

    “Sean doesn’t treat every group in need the same”

    No that’s how the homophobes act: infertile opposite-sex couples are somehow different, and better, than same-sex infertile couples. Sean clearly wants all groups treated the same, unless there is a rational public purpose for doing otherwise.

    “His preference for gays among all the possible types of same-sex relationships out there was clearly stated.”

    Not at all. Sean advocates that any adult same-sex couple, gay or not, not otherwise prohibited by law, should be able to marry.

    “I support benefits for groups much more inclusive than gay adults. How is that hurting gay adults?”

    I misunderstood you. I thought you opposed same-sex marriage. I happily stand corrected.

    “I support telling gay teens that they are free to choose their lifestyle, to have a happy life of their choosing, they are capable of it. How is that causing them to commit suicide?”

    Implying that sexual orientation is chosen, and can be and/or should be changed, promotes homophobia that leads some teens to despair and ultimately suicide, in some cases. I’m happy to map out how that works for you, again.

    “Their parents, sadly, chose not to get married because one or both decided that their sexual preference (read prejudice) was more important. I can only mourn their decision.”

    Well, straight people are free to exercise their own sexual preference (read prejudice). Why shouldn’t gays? I think marginalizing children because you don’t approve of their parents is immoral. The children of same-sex couples would be much better off if their parents could marry. And gay kids wouldn’t feel so badly about themselves if legal recognition of same-sex marriages weren’t outlawed. And the kids of same-sex parents wouldn’t think there’s something wrong with their parents.

  22. October 26th, 2010 at 21:54 | #22

    Mark :
    Because, On Lawn, there is no such thing as a non-gay same-sex couple.

    Yep, denial. How sad it is that Mark’s only way to justify his prejudice is to pretend that mother-daughter pairs, or two sisters, or two guy friends, any of them banding together in a committed relationship to help raise children just don’t exist.

    On Lawn’s ignorance is showing. CU’s and DP’s do not offer the same benefits of marriage.

    I’m not biting on this greedy ultimatum of Mark’s. The fact is CU’s and DP’s give benefits, and Mark doesn’t accept them as even a good start.

    Its all, or he claims its nothing, I’m afraid.

    [...] homosexuality is not a religion.

    Mark’s reading comprehension is on display again. I didn’t say homosexuality is a religion, I said homosexualism is a religion. You know the belief structure that some unseen superior hand selects certain souls to Calvanist destiny of being unable to love, honor, or cherish someone of the other gender in any meaningful marital way.

    Its the belief system that is I’m talking about, everyone knows homosexuality is just a behavior.

    On Lawn’s attempt to include homosexuals in with religious fundamentalists is, well, ignorant. And notice how many smiley faces On Lawn uses? Shows he is REALLY struggling with his lies.

    Mark doesn’t know ignorant if it bit him on the nose, and his unhappiness shows in his hatred of smiley faces :)

    Homosexualism is a belief system, and in its most fundamental form foments violence like many other belief systems that try to convince their own followers that they are victims.

  23. October 26th, 2010 at 22:36 | #23

    Sean :
    No that’s how the homophobes act: infertile opposite-sex couples are somehow different, and better, than same-sex infertile couples.

    Sorry for this outburst everyone. Clearly Sean is ignorant of what “infertile” means. It doesn’t mean same-sex couples, it means a couple which is engaged in unprotected coitus for a year without having a child. A gay couple is unable to perform coitus which requires sexual organs of each sex.

    Sean clearly wants all groups treated the same, unless there is a rational public purpose for doing otherwise.

    And that rational purpose for excluding same-sex couples who aren’t gay (like two sisters banding together to raise a child) is?

    Besides, Sean’s own animus against procreation rules out him recognizing responsible procreation (which requires both genders) as a rational purpose to marriage.

    “His preference for gays among all the possible types of same-sex relationships out there was clearly stated.”
    Not at all. Sean advocates that any adult same-sex couple, gay or not, not otherwise prohibited by law, should be able to marry.

    Turned a new leaf? I doubt it, we’ve seen you say this before your tirade about only helping gays (noted above).

    I’m incredulous, I believe Sean is trying to do PR spin on what he clearly said was his bias and prejudice for gays.

    So Sean, do you support a non-romantic unrelated same-sex couple having all the same benefits of a gay, romantic same-sex couple or not?

    “I support benefits for groups much more inclusive than gay adults. How is that hurting gay adults?”
    I misunderstood you. I thought you opposed same-sex marriage. I happily stand corrected.

    If that is enough to get your recognition that I support same-sex marriage, then sure. Just don’t neuter marriage (i.e. remove its reference to “one man and one woman”, because that isn’t needed to do what I support for gays and non-romantic same-sex couples.

    Do you agree to that too?

    “I support telling gay teens that they are free to choose their lifestyle, to have a happy life of their choosing, they are capable of it. How is that causing them to commit suicide?”
    Implying that sexual orientation is chosen, and can be and/or should be changed, promotes homophobia that leads some teens to despair and ultimately suicide, in some cases. I’m happy to map out how that works for you, again.

    So Sean is not for freewill and choice. The unseen hand has marked certain people to pre-determined sexual segregation. Sounds much like the white-supremacists arguments of a few decades ago. Its a shame Sean doesn’t learn from history.

    “Their parents, sadly, chose not to get married because one or both decided that their sexual preference (read prejudice) was more important. I can only mourn their decision.”
    Well, straight people are free to exercise their own sexual preference (read prejudice). Why shouldn’t gays? I think marginalizing children because you don’t approve of their parents is immoral. The children of same-sex couples would be much better off if their parents could marry. And gay kids wouldn’t feel so badly about themselves if legal recognition of same-sex marriages weren’t outlawed. And the kids of same-sex parents wouldn’t think there’s something wrong with their parents.

    Sean, what is the difference between these three couples…

    1) A man and a woman who recognize their special relationship with the child they potentially create together, so they commit to love, honor and cherish each other to support each other in their rights and responsibilities in how they create and raise that child by being married together.
    2) An opposite sex couple
    3) A gay man and a lesbian woman who recognize their special relationship with the child they potentially create together, just like #1.

    Can you spot the difference?

  24. Mark
    October 27th, 2010 at 06:47 | #24

    On Lawn: “How sad it is that Mark’s only way to justify his prejudice is to pretend that mother-daughter pairs, or two sisters, or two guy friends, any of them banding together in a committed relationship to help raise children just don’t exist.”

    And On Lawn, once again, uses a “same-sex relationship” as a “same-sex couple” even though he denies he ever said they were identical. This is the problem with On Lawn’s postings: he is not consistent, and constantly changes his arguments in failed attempts to discredit others posting.

    “The fact is CU’s and DP’s give benefits, and Mark doesn’t accept them as even a good start.”

    They are not a bad start, but they do not grant the same benefits that On Lawn continues to insist they do. Once again, when shown he is wrong, On Lawn changes his tactics. Just once, it would be nice to see On Lawn admit that he is wrong, especially at those times when he is so clearly wrong.

    “I said homosexualism is a religion.”

    “Homosexualism” is merely another term for homosexuality, it is not a religion. On Lawn once again, can either not understand the English language (just try using a dictionary) or is purposefully lying about it.

    “Homosexualism is a belief system”

    Only in On Lawn’s sadly deluded mind. Honestly, On Lawn, you are really getting out of control.

  25. Sean
    October 27th, 2010 at 12:05 | #25

    “Sorry for this outburst everyone.”

    Apology accepted. We realize you’re frustrated that you can’t find a rational public interest to prohibit same-sex couples from marrying. Maybe at this point you might explain why it matters so much to you. Why are you so strongly against same-sex marriage, given all the benefits to society of same-sex marriage?

    “Clearly Sean is ignorant of what “infertile” means”

    I think it means “can’t have babies.” Generally speaking, that describes elderly couples, young infertile couples, and same-sex couples. In addition, many couples refuse to have babies, even though they are biologically capable of it.

    “And that rational purpose for excluding same-sex couples who aren’t gay (like two sisters banding together to raise a child) is?”

    Society appears not to want closely related persons to marry. I don’t necessarily support this viewpoint but it doesn’t violate anyone’s constitutional rights so I won’t argue against it.

    “Sean’s own animus against procreation”

    Sean happily supports everyone’s right to procreate! What makes you think I oppose procreation? I happily procreated myself!

    “So Sean, do you support a non-romantic unrelated same-sex couple having all the same benefits of a gay, romantic same-sex couple or not?”

    Absolutely. Any adult couple not otherwise prohibited by law should be able to marry.

    “So Sean is not for freewill and choice.”

    Sean is certainly for free will and choice when it’s possible. It’s not possible with sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is not chosen, it is discovered.

  26. October 27th, 2010 at 15:07 | #26

    Sean :
    “Sorry for this outburst everyone.”
    Apology accepted.

    Funny, it is clear that I was apologizing for Sean’s outburst, so I’ll fix his comment accordingly :)

    Sean: > We realize [I'm] frustrated that [I] can’t find a rational public interest to prohibit [gays] from marrying. Maybe at this point [I] might explain why it matters so much to [me]. Why [am I] so strongly against [gays] marr[ying], given all the benefits to society of [...] marriage?

    Very well Sean, go ahead. Why do you think that gays are prohibited from marrying. Is it because you think they are incapable of loving, honoring, and cherishing someone of the other gender? Is it because they don’t see the benefits of marriage for the person they create a child with, and the child they potentially have together?

    I’m happy to hear you out on this. Just because you haven’t come up with a rational reason in the past doesn’t mean you should stop trying :)

    [Me: ]“Clearly Sean is ignorant of what “infertile” means”
    I think it means “can’t have babies.”[1] Generally speaking, that describes elderly couples, young infertile couples, and same-sex couples. In addition, many couples refuse to have babies, even though they are biologically capable of it.

    1) Actually, it means can’t have babies even after continuous trying for a year. Same-sex couples aren’t even trying :)
    2) Well, it describes the elderly and those who are disabled in being able to have kids (but are still trying). It doesn’t describe same-sex couples, they aren’t even trying.

    “And that rational purpose for excluding same-sex couples who aren’t gay (like two sisters banding together to raise a child) is?”
    Society appears not to want closely related persons to marry [1]. I don’t necessarily support this viewpoint but it doesn’t violate anyone’s constitutional rights [2] so I won’t argue against it.

    1) Society appears to not accept that same-sex couples are a marriage. In every state it is put to a vote, such a re-affirmation of the definition of marriage explicitely referencing the procreative relationship (man and woman) has been codified as law.

    But you think that is still irrational, so clearly the fact that society sees it isn’t rational to you.

    2) Similarly, if it doesn’t violate their rights, it doesn’t violate the rights of same-sex couples — it is only equal and fair to say so :)

    “Sean’s own animus against procreation”
    Sean happily supports everyone’s right to procreate! What makes you think I oppose procreation? I happily procreated myself!

    Yet you don’t want marriage to explicitely recognize the rights associated with procreation, nor any other institution, with the reference to “one man and one woman”.

    Your ability to contradict yourself is already noted, and still you show animus towards procreation to leave it out in the cold.

    “So Sean, do you support a non-romantic unrelated same-sex couple having all the same benefits of a gay, romantic same-sex couple or not?”
    Absolutely. Any adult couple not otherwise prohibited by law should be able to marry.

    Well then, Sean just said he’s ready to pack up and go home. Where same-sex couples are not recognized by law as a marriage, he’s perfectly happy with that situation.

    No, not really. Sean is just contradicting himself again :)

    “So Sean is not for freewill and choice.”
    Sean is certainly for free will and choice when it’s possible. It’s not possible with sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is not chosen, it is discovered.

    Again, Sean’s self-contradiction is obvious… and very sad when you contemplate it.

  27. Sean
    October 27th, 2010 at 18:05 | #27

    “Why do you think that gays are prohibited from marrying. Is it because you think they are incapable of loving, honoring, and cherishing someone of the other gender? Is it because they don’t see the benefits of marriage for the person they create a child with, and the child they potentially have together?”

    Mixed orientation marriages too often fail and we as a society shouldn’t be doing things to promote or increase divorce. Divorce is hard on both adults and children. It should be discouraged.

    Just as a straight person wants to have sex with an opposite-sex person, a gay person wants to have sex with a same-sex person. Both types of person want to have a relationship with their respective choice of person. Can a straight person have loving, honoring, cherishing relationship with someone of the same sex? Maybe, but I don’t think it would be his or her first choice. I think with a small amount of empathy, straight people who oppose same-sex marriage could imagine how different their own lives would be if they were denied the right to marry the consenting adult of their choice.

    “Society appears to not accept that same-sex couples are a marriage”

    Better tell that to folks in five states and the nation’s capital, as well as the three states that recognize same-sex marriages performed out of state. Just a reminder, forgive me for repeating myself, I know I do that in here: rights aren’t determined by what the majority wants but rather by the US Constitution and the body of laws passed by state and national legislatures. I am unimpressed by what the people want, if their want violates a state or national constitution. As a US citizen, I am protected by tyrannical majorities as well as tyrants.

    “Yet you don’t want marriage to explicitely recognize the rights associated with procreation, nor any other institution, with the reference to “one man and one woman”.”

    I don’t know why you keep saying this. While procreation and marriage are socially connected, they’re not legally connected. And even if they were, how does this create an exclusion for same-sex couples getting married?!?!?!? If you’re a straight couple, congratulations on procreating responsibly and getting married and enjoying the status and rights that go with being a married couple. If you’re a gay couple (or an elderly couple, or an infertile couple or a couple who refuse to have children, congratulations on getting married and enjoying the status and rights that go with being a married couple. I really don’t see what all the fuss is about.

  28. Chairm
    October 29th, 2010 at 21:57 | #28

    Procreation and marriage are legally connected, to say the least, via the sexual basis for the marital presumption of paternity. Fact. Consent to all that marriage entails is a legal requirement since marital status is not a conditional status. Fact. No one-sexed arrangement is infertile since no one-sexed arrangement is fertile in the first place. Fact.

    It is not a good idea to accord same-sex scenarios a preferential status on par with marital status — under any name (civil union, domestic partnership, registered partnership, SSM, etc) — however the vulnerabilities that families (especially those raising children) experience in the vast nonmarriage category are due primarily to the diminishment (or lack) of sex integration and responsible procreation in their circumstances. Society may respond with protections such as the provisions for designated beneficiaries; these protections do not necessitate a relationship status, at law, but a protective status would have a rational basis. Setting up a protective status based on on gayness would have no such basis. Same-sex scenarios include a range far wider than the gay subset that the SSM campaign represents. Yet the SSM campaign continually harps on protections while demanding equal treatment; but equal treatment amidst the nonmarriage category would be gay-blind, unlike SSMers.

    Appeasing gay identity politics would only whet the appetite for yet more unjust demands. See the example of civil union in California, for a very prominent example, where the society affirmed the man-woman basis of marriage in statutory law and then accorded a special status known as civil union. This appeasement, seen by many as a legitimate and just compromise, was used to attack the marriage idea. So treating a subset of nonmarriage as special, and treating it more generously than in other jurisdictions, was not a compromise but a trojan horse. Gay identity politics duped the the socially gay-friendly People of California.

    However, the largest post-election survey suggested that about 1 in 5 gay voters cast a ballot for the CA marriage amendment. That provide more than half of the margin of victory. So as influential as gay identity politics is in such a jurisdiction, even self-identified gay voters recognized when being taken for dupes by the hockers of identity politics.

    Across the country more liberals and moderates have voted for marriage measures than have conservatives; more Democrats and Independents than Republicans. The consensus is broadly-based and yet the SSM campaign seeks to denigrade all dissent and opposition and, when given the opportunity, attacks the liberties and freedoms of citizens — despite the pro-SSM pretense of defending tolerance and the constitutional principles of self-governance.

    When the SSMer concedes that ‘same-sex couple’ is a vague concept, as per the discussion above, and that his own gay emphasis is unjustified, as strongly suggested in the concessions made above, it becomes clear that the SSM idea is very different than the marriage idea. It becomes clear that in the conflict of ideas, the SSM idea is more heat than light and the marriage idea is more light than heat; the marriage idea sheds light on the SSM idea’s lack of substance and hyper-emphasis on group identity. But the marriage idea sheds light on other matters of great societal significance such as procreative justice and equality of the sexes and principles of self-governance and so forth. The SSM idea is a transparent mimickry that thinly veils a different overall goal: to equate the conjugal relations of husband and wife with same-sex sexual behaviors. Yet there is moral argument that favors the latter in societal terms. SSMers routinely default to a stance of moral neutrality even as they insist that those who oppose them are the moral equivalent of racists. The mimickry is thus not limited to marriage but also to a shallow repurposing of arguments regarding ujust racial discrimination.

    But ask an SSMer for the objective criteria for deeming a person a member of this or that race; and ask for the criteria for deeming a person a member of the gay identity group. The responses, if civil and thoughtful, will reveal that there is one human race and its nature is two-sexed; gay is a socio-political construct and not an inborn characteristic (even if, for the sake of discussion, homosexuality might be inborn in some few people). The discussion usually demonstrates that the racialist analogue is the SSM supporter, not the marriage supporter.

  29. Chairm
    October 29th, 2010 at 22:01 | #29

    Thypo correction: “The SSM idea is a transparent mimickry that thinly veils a different overall goal: to equate the conjugal relations of husband and wife with same-sex sexual behaviors. Yet there is no moral argument that favors the latter in societal terms.”

  30. Sean
    October 31st, 2010 at 06:36 | #30

    “Procreation and marriage are legally connected, to say the least, via the sexual basis for the marital presumption of paternity.”

    No one is disputing that if children appear, the husband gets to presume the kids are his. That principle is in no way compromised when same-sex couples get married. It is not a reason to marry, nor the purpose of marriage, but and aspect of marriage, like not having to testify against a spouse in court. If your spouse is never accused of a crime, your spousal right is never invoked. Similarly, if you never have kids, your paternal right is never invoked.

    Maybe I mentioned this before: “responsible procreation” or whatever else you think is a core aspect of marriage is in no way compromised when same-sex couples marry. Take Massachusetts, for example. Same-sex marriage is legal, and “responsible procreation” didn’t go away!

    “No one-sexed arrangement is infertile since no one-sexed arrangement is fertile in the first place. Fact.”

    So now your definition of marriage is: must be actively procreational or look like you can procreate, or was had the capacity to procreate? How is it useful to society to monitor the procreational aspects of a couple that cannot procreate?

    “It is not a good idea to accord same-sex scenarios a preferential status on par with marital status”

    If it’s “par” then it’s not “preferential.”

    “the vulnerabilities that families (especially those raising children) experience in the vast nonmarriage category are due primarily to the diminishment (or lack) of sex integration and responsible procreation in their circumstances.”

    Not according to marriage expert Maggie Gallagher, of NOM. Children are made vulnerable when their parents aren’t married, other factors being equal. Married couples live longer, are healthier and wealthier, according to Gallagher. The children of married couples do much better in life, statistically speaking, than the children of unmarried couples. Why anyone, for any reason, would want to deny the children of same-sex couples the benefits of having married parents is beyond me, and is probably borderline sociopathological.

    “Yet the SSM campaign continually harps on protections while demanding equal treatment; but equal treatment amidst the nonmarriage category would be gay-blind, unlike SSMers.”

    But it’s ok when OSMers insist that straightness is superior to gayness. There’s no rational reason to give legal protection to the relationships of straight people but not to gay people.

    “Appeasing gay identity politics would only whet the appetite for yet more unjust demands.”

    Demanding equality is not unjust. It is very American, in fact. And yes, gay people are plotting to take over your life and make you gay if possible. Unless you’re not very attractive, then you can stay straight.

    “So treating a subset of nonmarriage as special, and treating it more generously than in other jurisdictions, was not a compromise but a trojan horse.”

    Exactly. Civil unions and domestic partnerships serve merely to create second-class status for gay couples and their children. There is no particular rational public purpose in subordinating gay couples, not in providing primacy to straight couples.

    “However, the largest post-election survey suggested that about 1 in 5 gay voters cast a ballot for the CA marriage amendment.”

    And probably about 40% of straight people voted against marriage discrimination. That’s pretty remarkable, given that straight people already have the right to marry, and had nothing to lose by eliminating that right for gay people.

    “The consensus is broadly-based and yet the SSM campaign seeks to denigrate all dissent and opposition”

    No one should be shy about decrying a public policy that violates the constitution, hurts children, and promotes homophobia in a society where gay people are disproportionately victimized by violence. It appears that many marriage discriminators are becoming uncomfortable with their positions and the dwindling number of supporters. The Straight Supremacy Campaign/Marriage Discrimination Movement appears to be descending into caricature, with bus tours, rallies attended by tens of people, embarrassing association with extremists who advocate suicide for gay teens, etc. It’s a train wreck that’s hard not to watch!

    “When the SSMer concedes that ‘same-sex couple’ is a vague concept”

    There’s nothing vague about it: a same-sex couple is a couple composed of two people of the same sex. That was easy!

    “the marriage idea sheds light on the SSM idea’s lack of substance and hyper-emphasis on group identity”

    Good to know that you consider the welfare of children, our nation’s constitution, and violence against gays and lesbians insubstantial issues! It highlights a remarkable take-no-prisoners aspect to the Straight Supremacy/Marriage Discrimination Campaign: whoever, whatever we have to hurt or destroy, is worth the price, in order to keep “the gays” away from marriage!

  31. Ruth
    November 1st, 2010 at 12:57 | #31

    Sean,
    You presume that if society calls a sexual relationship between two men “marriage” children will benefit.
    However, God calls this behavior sin.
    Are you claiming to be more compassionate than God?
    Did you create the universe?
    Did you die for the sins of the world?

  32. Mark
    November 2nd, 2010 at 05:34 | #32

    Ruth: “You presume that if society calls a sexual relationship between two men “marriage” children will benefit.
    However, God calls this behavior sin.”

    Ruth, being gay or lesbian is not a sin in the eyes of God. He created gays and lesbians. It’s sad that people use a few poorly interpreted verses in the Bible to hate their fellow human beings. Hardly a Christian idea.

    More importantly, we are not a theocracy, but a democracy with guaranteed rights. That means that everyone in this country has equal rights, from gays to straights, from Christians to non-Christians, from rich to poor, for all races and sexes.

  33. Ruth
    November 3rd, 2010 at 01:47 | #33

    It is very clear in Scripture that God calls homosexual activity sin.
    It is not what we are tempted to do, but what we do against God’s will that is called sin.
    There is pleasure in sin for “a season”, but sin ultimately leads to death.
    Encouraging someone to sin is the same thing as leading them into death.
    It doesn’t matter if that person is religious or not, sin leads to death.

    God says to you and to everyone,
    “I set before you this day life and death, the blessing and the curse.
    Therefore, choose life.”
    Stop advocating for death.
    You may call it hate or anything else you like, but I plead with you:
    Choose life and help others choose life, instead of causing them to stumble into death.

  34. Mark
    November 6th, 2010 at 10:19 | #34

    Ruth: “It is very clear in Scripture that God calls homosexual activity sin.”

    It is also clear that there are a HOST of other laws in the Bible that could be interpreted as sin, many of them you probably due (eating shell fish, wearing cotton-polyester blend clothing).

    “Choose life and help others choose life, instead of causing them to stumble into death.”

    I do, Ruth. I encourage people to be who God made them to be. The idea of two people in a loving, committed homosexual relationship is never discussed in the Bible. Supporting them as fellow human beings is not “causing them to stumble into death”.

    When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was, He responded:
    “”You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

    Notice, it is “love your neighbor as yourself”. Not try to change him, not to judge who he is, and not condemn him for his behaviors but love him.

  35. Ruth
    November 7th, 2010 at 00:25 | #35

    The laws that pertained particularly to Israel as a nation set apart for God were not repeated for Gentiles grafted into Israel in the New Testament. However, sexual immorality, including homosexual activity, is regarded as sin in the New Testament.
    God does not want us to sin because sin leads to death, and God wants each one of us to have abundant life.
    He demonstrated that desire by coming in the person of His Son to die in our place.
    The original law surrounding “love you neighbor as yourself” also contains these words:
    “You shall not hate your brother in your heart. You shall surely rebuke your neighbor…”
    A rebuke comes out of an observation.
    Please be open to such observations, unlike the men of Sodom who scorned Lot’s “judgement”, and were judged by God.

  36. Mark
    November 9th, 2010 at 21:35 | #36

    Ruth: “The laws that pertained particularly to Israel as a nation set apart for God were not repeated for Gentiles grafted into Israel in the New Testament. However, sexual immorality, including homosexual activity, is regarded as sin in the New Testament.”

    Glad you feel comfortable in cherry picking the verse from the Bible you do and do not want to follow. Hope you make the right choice, Ruth.

    “Please be open to such observations, unlike the men of Sodom who scorned Lot’s “judgement” (sic), and were judged by God.”

    And, suddenly, we are back to the Old Testament. So, Ruth, in your opinion, the story of Sodom tells us we should allow our daughters to be raped? If it’s all about sex, that’s what the story tells us: that Lot tried to get the men to rape his daughters. Course, if the story is not about sex (which it isn’t), then Lot’s reaction makes more sense. Because, the story of Sodom is not about homosexuality but of in-hospitality, something far more of a concern in Old Testament days. Course, makes it harder to judge and hate gays that way, doesn’t it Ruth?

  37. Ruth
    November 14th, 2010 at 23:30 | #37

    OK.
    Let’s go back to the Old Testament laws.
    They were given to the nation of Israel, and whomever would join them in obedience to God, so they would live long and prosper in the land God was giving them.
    Gentile Christians in the early church were given an abbreviated version of the law:
    They were told to abstain from sacrifices to idols, from blood and strangled meat, and from sexual immorality (including homosexual behavior).
    This does not negate the law, but becomes the foundation of law for a new Christian community that has not been brought up, as the first disciples were, in the Jewish faith.
    It is perfectly valid for anyone who wants to live long and prosper to avoid shellfish, pork, and even blending wool and linen fibers in their clothing (as the prohibition states), but that is not what we are discussing here.

    In my opinion, the story of Lot tells us what happens when ruthless and depraved bullies take over a whole society; that society is judged by God.
    Lot (unrighteously) offered his daughters to the crowd of men, but they were not interested in his daughters.
    As horrible as that would have been, these men of Sodom were even more depraved.
    They wanted Lot’s male guests to come outside so they could molest them sexually.
    When Lot told them (correctly) that this was not right, they said,
    “Stand back.” And they said again, “This one fellow came here to stay awhile, and now he is acting like a judge. We’re going to deal worse with you, than with those men.” They pushed hard against Lot and lunged forward to break down the door.”

    Lot did not have a chance to respond further to them.

    Do you see that the men of Sodom scorned Lot’s “judgment”, much as some do here when told that God calls homosexual behavior “sin”?

  38. Sean
    November 15th, 2010 at 12:56 | #38

    If homosexual behavior is legal, why isn’t same-sex marriage?

  39. Ruth
    November 15th, 2010 at 14:15 | #39

    There are a lot of things that are legal that aren’t marriage.

  40. Mark
    November 16th, 2010 at 16:32 | #40

    Ruth: “It is perfectly valid for anyone who wants to live long and prosper to avoid shellfish, pork, and even blending wool and linen fibers in their clothing (as the prohibition states), but that is not what we are discussing here.”

    But they are part of the Old Testament laws. Why do you scorn (and ignore) them? How do you justify picking and choosing which parts of the Bible to follow and which parts to condemn others with?

    “They wanted Lot’s male guests to come outside so they could molest them sexually…..Do you see that the men of Sodom scorned Lot’s “judgment”, much as some do here when told that God calls homosexual behavior “sin”?”

    Actually, what I see, is a mob who want to molest two strangers. The sexuality of the players is unimportant. This kind of violent behavior has really nothing to do with a loving, gay couple. God create all of us, male and female, straight and gay, black and white, and He wants us all to be happy. It’s pretty simple.

  41. Ruth
    November 16th, 2010 at 23:50 | #41

    What makes you think that I scorn or ignore them?
    But you ignore God’s laws.

  42. Mark
    November 17th, 2010 at 15:26 | #42

    Ruth: “What makes you think that I scorn or ignore them?”

    Do you eat shellfish and ham? Do you wear cotton/polyester blend clothing? Do you always make a sacrifice after each menstrual period (Leviticus 15:29)? Do you ever do any work on July 10th – even laundry, yard work or dishes (Leviticus 16:29-30)? Do you have children? If so, did you remember to make the appropriate sacrifices (Leviticus 12:5-8)? My guess is you may have missed (ignored) some of these laws.

    “But you ignore God’s laws.”

    Actually I don’t, oh judgmental one.

  43. Ruth
    November 18th, 2010 at 22:50 | #43

    I do not eat shellfish and ham.
    The Bible says nothing about cotton/polyester blend clothing, but I do not wear linen/wool blends.
    It is not possible to make a sacrifice since the destruction of the temple.
    The Bible is not based on the Gregorian calendar.

    God calls homosexual sex “sin”.

  44. Mark
    November 19th, 2010 at 15:35 | #44

    Ruth: “The Bible says nothing about cotton/polyester blend clothing, but I do not wear linen/wool blends.”

    But Leviticus 19:19 says cloth of two different fibers. Oh, the linen/wool blend is in the King James version. So, all those other Bibles are wrong? Or is it that words may not always mean the exact same thing when translated over the centuries?

    “It is not possible to make a sacrifice since the destruction of the temple.”

    The Bible mentions sacrifices in Leviticus. Oh, but, if the Leviticus verses only refer to the temple, then those must be verses regarding ritual, not regular, every day behavior.

    “The Bible is not based on the Gregorian calendar.”

    Oh, no! So how do you know when to avoid work? What calender is the Bible based on?

    “God calls homosexual sex “sin”.”

    No, because, as you said above, the Leviticus verses only apply to temple procedures. God says nothing about a loving gay relationship.

    But Jesus does. He actually blesses them (Matthew 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-16)

  45. Ruth
    November 20th, 2010 at 00:23 | #45

    There is commentary on the subject of blending fibers and you can look into it for yourself.
    Sacrifices were made in the temple.
    The temple was destroyed, so sacrifices cannot be made.
    However, we can see what God’s attitudes and values are in the law, even if we cannot make sacrifices in the temple.
    The sacrifice of the perfect Lamb of God shows us the seriousness of sin.

    Jewish dates are determined on a lunar calendar.

    The Bible is very clear about homosexual practice, both in the Old and New Testaments.
    Regarding the references you cite, the interpretation seems forced, but
    Jesus definitely healed sinners. Let’s face it, there isn’t anyone else to heal.
    But he also said to a man he had healed, “Stop sinning, or something worse may happen to you.”
    God loves you.
    Satan is lying to you to keep you in his prison of sin.
    Jesus said, “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world, but lose his own soul?”
    “…for the gate that leads to destruction is wide and the road broad, and many travel it; but it is a narrow gate and a hard road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
    Jesus has a better plan for you than sin and death.
    He wants to take your death and infuse you with His own life.
    Say “no” to sin, and “Yes” to Yeshua.

  46. Mark
    November 20th, 2010 at 22:58 | #46

    Ruth: “There is commentary on the subject of blending fibers and you can look into it for yourself.”

    I did. I looked it up in the Bible.
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=leviticus%2019:19&version=NIV

    OH! Are you telling me the Bible can be INTERPRETED in difference ways?

    “The Bible is very clear about homosexual practice, both in the Old and New Testaments.”

    One can say it’s pretty clear about fabric too.

    “God loves you.”

    I know that.

    “Satan is lying to you to keep you in his prison of sin.”

    I’d look around, if I were you, Ruth. It would seem that someone who feels certain parts of the Bible should be taken literally and others can be interpreted is more in a prison of sin than someone who sees the Bible as a guide to understanding God and his relationship to man.

  47. Ruth
    November 22nd, 2010 at 08:17 | #47

    Do you honestly believe that the injunctions against homosexual sex in the Old and New Testaments are unclear?

  48. Mark
    November 22nd, 2010 at 20:06 | #48

    Ruth: “Do you honestly believe that the injunctions against homosexual sex in the Old and New Testaments are unclear?”

    Yes. The terms used do not reflect a modern understanding of same-sex attraction. The Old Testament refers to forced sexual contact (oh, this refers back to your questions of “consent”). The New Testament actually down grades all marriage unless a man (notice women are left out) cannot control his urges.

  49. Ruth
    November 23rd, 2010 at 11:12 | #49

    So, you believe that the Bible is unclear about whether or not homosexual conduct is sin?

  50. Mark
    November 23rd, 2010 at 21:48 | #50

    Ruth: “So, you believe that the Bible is unclear about whether or not homosexual conduct is sin?”

    Yes, Ruth, it is.

  51. Ruth
    November 23rd, 2010 at 23:58 | #51

    Hmmm.
    When you really want to know, I think you will find it clear.

    Sometimes we resist the plain meaning of Scripture because we feel that it is impossible, or at least very difficult, to fulfill.
    Let’s say I like to gossip and I read that God calls gossip “sin”.
    I might try to explain that away because I cannot imagine myself not gossiping.
    But then I get really serious about wanting to be close to God, and maybe I get into trouble with gossip, and I become willing to give it up, even though I feel like I’m going to die without it.
    When I am ready, God will come through with His power.
    Just as I cannot imagine how He created the world, or even a bug in the world, I cannot imagine how He will make the non-gossiping “me” a reality.
    The problem is not that God is too strict, but that my imagination is too small.
    Will I fail? Perhaps.
    But I will be in the good training yoke, along with Jesus, on that difficult road.

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