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Family Research Council: Not About Religion


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I found this report on Christianity Today and thought that Sprigg's framing of the opposition to gay marriage by the religious right was. . . interesting:

Even the broadest religious exemptions would not be enough for some opponents of same-sex marriage. Family Research Council's Peter Sprigg said “the principal objection to homosexual 'marriage' has nothing to do with religion.â€

“At its heart, marriage is neither a civil institution nor a religious institution. Instead, marriage is a natural institution—rooted in the order of nature itself,†Sprigg said. “The core message of the opposition to homosexual 'marriage' is not just, 'Don’t make us perform same-sex weddings in our church.' Instead, it is: 'Society needs children, and children need a mom and a dad.'â€

http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctpol ... pprov.html

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I think most people who against gay marriage are concerned that it will undermine marriage and create an anything-goes society. Those seem to be the responses I hear a lot.

I usually say: how will it make your marriage less valuable to you? Like, will it change the way you live your life on a daily basis?

And: we already live in an anything-goes society. At least, if you mean a gradual trend toward accepting alternative lifestyles.

Churches don't have to marry anyone that they don't want to. I just don't see the US government forcing that on anyone. As for the child-bearing aspect... maybe fifty years ago or more, children and marriage went hand-in-hand. Now, marriage does not necessarily mean children, and you can have a child out of wedlock without it being a bfd. It's kind of a null argument.

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If marriage is a natural institution then there shouldn't need to be any laws regulating it.

Why can't homosexuals raise children? There are lots of single parents, some of whom don't always have the other parent's help. Should children be taken from them and given to heterosexual couples? Should barren couples be forced to divorce? If marriage is mainly about raising children then there should only be any couple that doesn't have children should be forced to divorce.

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I remember back when I was a sophomore in college. I had to miss work one weekend because my grandmother was getting married and I wanted to attend. She and her husband got married in a church. Should their marriage be null and void because it was never going to produce children? Should the church not have married them because they were never going to have a family? The argument that the sole purpose of marriage is to rear children is bogus. The sole purpose of marriage is to legally profess one's commitment to the person they love.

Furthermore, Christians don't own the rights to the institution of marriage. Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Wiccans, Pagans, Athiests, etc. all get married. Marriage existed before Christianity. Marriage existed even before Judaism. So, their religious argument is also bogus.

I'm also wondering why anyone is worried that religious institutions will be forced to perform gay marriage. One's wedding day is supposed to be a happy and celebratory occassion. Why would a gay couple want to get married someplace that was hostile and derogatory toward them? Why would the want to have their special day marred by bigotry? I think it's highly unlikely that anti-gay institutions would ever find themselves in the position of having to marry a homosexual couple.

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Churches don't have to marry anyone that they don't want to.

Right. Which is why I don't understand the need for all these religious exemptions. Churches don't have to marry Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, pagans, etc. Catholic churches don't have to marry Protestants and Protestant churches don't have to marry Catholics. Baptist churches don't have to marry Methodists. Rabbis don't have to officiate at intermarriages. Catholics don't have to marry divorcees. Churches have never had to marry anybody they don't want to as it is. Why do they think the legalization of same-sex marriage would even remotely affect that?

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Right. Which is why I don't understand the need for all these religious exemptions. Churches don't have to marry Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, pagans, etc. Catholic churches don't have to marry Protestants and Protestant churches don't have to marry Catholics. Baptist churches don't have to marry Methodists. Rabbis don't have to officiate at intermarriages. Catholics don't have to marry divorcees. Churches have never had to marry anybody they don't want to as it is. Why do they think the legalization of same-sex marriage would even remotely affect that?

This!

(I don't understand why they feel like they will be forced to marry same-sex couples when they can even turn down a couple from within their own congregation that they don't think is ready to marry.)

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Granted, I've done absolutely no research on what the religious exemptions entail, but I think it probably has to do with public venues.

Normally, religious entities that own property that they open up to the public cannot discriminate. Let's say that a church owns a hall that they allow the public to rent for various functions. Normally, because it's open to the public, they would not be able to turn down a gay couple from renting the venue (as opposed to churches which only allow members of their congregation/denomination/etc use their facilities- they can turn down anyone because the venue is private) These exemptions would allow them to not discriminate againt anyone but gay people. Personally, I think that's crap but it's also a small pill to swallow when looking at the big picture of legalizing gay marriage in the state.

Again, I'd like to point out I have no idea what the exemptions actually cover- this is just my best guess.

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Granted, I've done absolutely no research on what the religious exemptions entail, but I think it probably has to do with public venues.

Normally, religious entities that own property that they open up to the public cannot discriminate. Let's say that a church owns a hall that they allow the public to rent for various functions. Normally, because it's open to the public, they would not be able to turn down a gay couple from renting the venue (as opposed to churches which only allow members of their congregation/denomination/etc use their facilities- they can turn down anyone because the venue is private) These exemptions would allow them to not discriminate againt anyone but gay people. Personally, I think that's crap but it's also a small pill to swallow when looking at the big picture of legalizing gay marriage in the state.

Again, I'd like to point out I have no idea what the exemptions actually cover- this is just my best guess.

OT, but I first read this as "public venuses" and I was like, WTF is that? :lol:

I don't know that much about it either, but I IMO there should be a distinction between the XYZ church that rents out its space for anyone to use and they can bring in their own officiant and have their own vows and whatever, and a church that will marry anyone, but you have to have their kind of ceremony with their minister, etc. I don't know for certain, but I think this is how my church does it. It's a very popular church to get married at because it's big and old-fashioned looking and a lot of "local celebrity" types get married there, so I know they marry people outside the congregation, but I think they have to use our minister, vows, etc. So they wouldn't refuse to marry, say, two Jews, but they wouldn't be able to have a traditional Jewish wedding with a rabbi. Anyway, I don't know how gays would fit into that and it doesn't really matter since hell will freeze over before my state legalizes gay marriage, but that's just my two cents.

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All children have a right to is at least one parent who loves them. Doesn't matter if that parent is straight, gay, white, black, brown, poor, rich, etc. They are full of it when they say a child has a right to both a mom and a dad.

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All children have a right to is at least one parent who loves them. Doesn't matter if that parent is straight, gay, white, black, brown, poor, rich, etc. They are full of it when they say a child has a right to both a mom and a dad.

I'd rather have one parent that loved me, or two gay or lesbian parents who loved me, rather than two heterosexual parents who beat me with quarter-inch plumbing line. Or who treated me as some sort of property. Or (fill in the blank).

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