Friday, 17 February 2012

Ten reasons not to legalise same-sex marriage in Britain

Britain is coming under increasing pressure to legalise same-sex marriage and Prime Minister David Cameron is determined to drive it through.

A consultation on same-sex marriage closed in Scotland in December 2011 and a new consultation is being launched next month in Westminster to consider how (not if!) legalisation should proceed in England and Wales.

Many people are asking 'Why not?'

Here are ten reasons not to legalise same-sex marriage.

1. Marriage is the union of one man and one woman

Throughout history in virtually all cultures and faiths throughout the world, marriage has been held to be the union of one man and one woman. Marriage existed thousands of years before our nation began and has been recognised in our laws as the ‘voluntary union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others for life’ (Hyde v Hyde 1866). The UN Declaration of Human Rights (article 16) recognises that the family, headed by a man and a woman, ‘is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State’. It is not up to governments to redefine marriage – but simply to recognise it for what it is, and to promote and protect it as a unique institution.

2.Same sex couples already have civil partnerships

All the legal rights of marriage are already available to same sex couples through civil partnerships so there is no need to redefine marriage to include them. The President of the Family Division has even described civil partnerships as conferring ‘the benefits of marriage in all but name’. Such a move would also inevitably lead to calls to open civil partnerships to opposite sex couples on the basis of ‘equality’. But marriage and civil partnerships have been designed for two very different types of relationship and should be kept distinct. It is not and should not be ‘one size fits all’.

3.Redefining marriage without consultation is undemocratic

None of the political leaders who are supporting the legalisation of same sex marriage announced it as a priority in their election manifestos. There is already a huge amount of opposition to the move and pressing ahead with legalisation will lead to considerable dissension and division. Legalising same sex marriage to appease a small minority is wrong and it should not be foisted on the British people without proper consultation about whether rather than how it should be done.

4.Equality does not mean uniformity

In a free democratic society we accept that many human activities are not open to everybody. Not everyone is allowed to drink alcohol, drive a car, buy property, cast a vote, own a firearm, attend university, visit Buckingham Palace or participate in a 100m women’s Olympic event. This does not mean that those who are not eligible for these activities are in any way denigrated or demeaned, but just that there are eligibility criteria. Same sex couples do not fulfil the eligibility criteria for marriage, which should be reserved for the voluntary union of one man and one woman for life.

5.Protecting traditional marriage safeguards children and society

Stable marriages and families headed by a mother and a father are the bedrock of society and the state has a duty to protect the uniqueness of these key institutions. Though death and divorce may prevent it, children do best when raised by a married mother and father. Whilst single parents or same sex couples may do a good job in raising children, social policy has to be concerned with what is normally the case, and children have a right if at all possible to have a married mother and a father involved in their upbringing. In general the evidence shows that marriage provides a stability for adults and children which is hard to beat in terms of outcomes. There is considerable evidence to show that marriage leads to better family relationships, less economic dependence, better physical health and longevity, improved mental health and emotional well-being and reduced crime and domestic violence. By contrast sexual freedom and relationship breakdown cost Britain £100 billion annually and other models of the family have not been shown to have the same stability as traditional marriage. Same sex marriage, in comparison with marriage, is an unproven and experimental social model.

6.Marriage is a unique biologically complementary relationship

Marriage is the only legal union which can naturally lead to children. It takes both a man and a woman to produce a baby. The fact that there is a natural link between sexual intimacy and procreation is what makes marriage distinctive and different. Redefining marriage will undermine this distinctness and difference and risks normalising the technological instrumentalisation of reproduction and increasing the number of families where there is confusion of biological, social and family identity.

7.Redefining marriage will be complex and expensive

Redefining marriage could cost billions and involve amending hundreds of pieces of government legislation. The word 'marriage' appears 3,258 times in UK legislation, which underlines the central role the institution plays in national law. Introducing same sex marriage is a legal can of worms which cannot be achieved without changing the common and legal definition of the word marriage and other words which define it(eg. ‘husband and wife’, ‘consummation’ and ‘adultery’). These changes will inevitably change the definition and nature of marriage for opposite sex couples by trying to accommodate these two very different kinds of relationship under one legal umbrella. According to an assessment done for gay rights group Stonewall by a former civil servant, the cost of implementing one favoured option would be around £5 billion. This figure relates to a theoretical increase in straight couples taking up the opportunity of civil partnerships, with knock-on implications to their entitlement to pension and tax benefits. This is simply not a priority for government at a time of economic recession as it will confer no new rights.

8.Schools will be forced to teach about the new definition of marriage

Under existing education law schools will be required to teach children that marriage can be between a man and a woman, between two men or between two women. This will confuse children whose parents may wish to teach them according to their own values and worldview. Those parents who object could be undermined in their children’s eyes, stigmatised as homophobics and bigots and prevented from full involvement in schools.

9.Redefining marriage will not stop with same sex marriage

In Mexico same sex marriage was followed by two year fixed term marriage. In Canada legalising same sex marriage has led to supporters of polygamy demanding in the courts for their unions to be recognised. If the legal definition is changed to accommodate same sex couples other minority groups with a vested interest (eg. Muslims, Mormons, Bisexuals and Polyamorists) will have a much stronger case to argue for the legalisation of polygamy and group marriages. The best defence against this is to keep the legal definition of marriage unique and distinct – ‘one man, one woman, for life’.

10.Redefining marriage will lead to faith-based discrimination

We have already seen a rising tide of discrimination against people who support traditional marriage as a result of the legalisation of civil partnerships coupled with new equality legislation.. If same sex marriage is legalised faith-based employers who provide special health benefits to married employees would be required by law to extend those benefits to same-sex ‘spouses’. They would also face lawsuits for taking any adverse employment action - no matter how modest - against an employee for the public act of obtaining a civil ‘marriage’ with a member of the same sex. Faith-based adoption and fostering services that place children exclusively with married couples would be required by law to place children with persons of the same sex who are civilly ‘married’. Marriage counsellors from faith backgrounds would be denied their professional accreditation for refusing to provide counselling in support of same-sex ‘married’ relationships. All these moves would place faith groups in the invidious position of being forced to act against their consciences or face marginalisation, exclusion and litigation and would further fuel social fragmentation, sectarianism, antagonism and civil unrest.

92 comments:

  1. I found reason 9 to be a pretty strong case. Well done for this list. I think reason 8 is the weakest case - but is still worthy to be added.

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    1. Re reason 8 I have just heard this week of an argument between two four year olds at a local pre-school where one was saying that marriage could be between a man and a man and the other was saying it could only be between a man and a woman.

      The teacher was able to explain the different perspectives but if the law changed would not have the same freedom.

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    2. That is the lamest argument ever.

      The answer would simply be, both are valid.

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    3. Both will not be valid if the law changes.

      You can now get arrested under the Public Order Act or Equality Act - and people have been - for expressing an orthodox Christian view on homosexuality.

      When the law changes practice that is currently legal becomes illegal - a la Daniel 3 & 6.

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    4. Eh? Who has been arrested for expressing an "orthodox" view?

      People frequently say Homosexuality is a sin, etc.
      They have a right to do so, I believe.

      Societies view however is that Homosexuals are equal members of society in the same way everyone else is, so that is what public funded schools should teach.

      In the same way publicly funded schools should teach that (for example) women are the Equal of men in our society although this has not been historically or culturally true, and some people still disagree with that claim (as they are free too).

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    5. Late comment, but as a Canadian I have to take issue with #9. Contrary to its claim, there has been no movement here by polygamists to demand recognition of their relationships in court as a result of SSM being legalized. That is an outright falsehood.

      Perhaps Saunders is thinking of a recent case of a person being convicted of polygamy. The conviction was appealed but was upheld by the provincial Supreme Court:

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/bc-court-upholds-anti-polygamy-law-as-constitutional/article543352/


      So clearly this argument against SSM (which you consider to be the strongest here) is false; Legalizaing SSM does mean legalizing polygamy. This is evident simply by looking at any of the many nations that have already passed marriage-equality law. We are not dealing with hypotheticals or a "social experiment" at this stage, but have extensive practical experience with the effects of legalizing SSM, and the only effect it has had on society is to allow increased equality for all citizens. There have been no negative effects whatsoever.

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    6. Number 9 is not a good case. It's only an argument if you admit that 1. you don't have a good secular argument against polygamy or short-term marriages or what have you, and 2. nonetheless they should not be allowed for reasons that carry no legal weight, don't make logical sense and/or have no empirical support behind them.

      I imagine you don't want to admit that. If you do have a good argument against polygamy, then same-sex marriage is no threat, because the issues that arise in same-sex marriage are very different from those that arise in polygamy (gender of participants and number of participants in a contract lead to different issues, naturally). If you simply argue against gay marriage with "but then we'll have to allow polygamy!" and then argue against polygamy with "but then we'll have to allow gay marriage!" then your arguments against both are vacuous.

      Think we shouldn't allow polygamy? Give me an argument why not.

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  2. 1 Civil marriage is between a man and a woman and explicitly excludes any religious references. It is a legal partnership recognised by the state and has absolutely nothing to do with religion. It is not up to religions to define what they believe marriage to be and then impose this understanding on everyone else in society. That is blatant bigotry, discrimination and homophobia.

    2 Civil partnerships are not equal to marriage in law and continue discrimination purely on the grounds of sexuality. Providing legal equality for same sex couples basically has nothing to do with religion and would be simple to implement.

    3 Consultation is proposed and anyone is welcome to contribute.

    4 You seem to have a twisted concept of equality if you think it means uniformity.

    5 Children being brought up by same sex couples are proven by all the research available to benefit equally to those children brought up by opposite sex couples. Providing marriage for same sex couples has no effect on marriage for opposite sex couples.

    6 The logical extension of your biological determinism would be that any heterosexual couple who were married and discovered they were infertile should be forced to get a divorce as they would no longer fulfil your 'distinctiveness' criteria and their marriage would therefore be invalid.

    7 And there are too many old people so we should just introduce compulsory euthanasia because of the costs. Pointless argument.

    8 So what? I think most children are already aware that gay people exist. What people believe and teach their children is their own business so long as it harms nobody else. You seem to suggest that parents who are homophobic would be excluded from participation in schools which is simply hysterical nonsense. For your information there are more state funded religious schools at the moment than at any point in the history of the UK. Those with religious beliefs are being accommodated more than ever within society.

    9 There is no evidence for any of these assertions.

    10 Couple X can do Y. Couple Z cannot. Enabling couple Z to do Y does not in any way discriminate against couple X. Equality is equality is equality. If you break the law then you have to live with the consequences. Feel free to be homophobic, intolerant, bigoted, discriminatory and hateful within your own religion but step outside into liberal society and try and do the same thing and I'm afraid you will suffer the consequences of your actions.

    (I cannot post this with just my name through your system so I'll put it here - Jeremy Hoad)

    9

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    1. Well done Jeremy, I could not have put it much better myself. I have never seen a set of more spurious arguments - most of which are simply straw men or patronising rubbish. The real issue here is that because of some passages in the OT and three or four mentions by the apostle Paul the Bible is thought to teach that Homosexuality is a sin and "incompatible" with the Christian way of life. All I can say is that I hope thos followers of Paul are making sure that all the women in the their church are silent during services and all wearing a hat! The sooner we stop treating the bible as an infalible text book, which it clearly is NOT, the sooner the Christian church will be able to move forwards in faith. I love the Lord Jesus, but these diatribes against equality put the faith and the Lord into disrepute.

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    2. I couldn't agree more with you Jeremy.
      I am a practicing Anglican and find the views and assertions from groups like Anglican Mainstream utterly alien. The views they are declaring are certainly not mainstream and do more harm to the wider public's view of the church than anything else.
      This is bigotry pure and simple.
      Anyone who holds such a view, when Jesus never mentioned it, but thinks it's ok for a divorcee to remarry is well outside the teachings of God the Son.
      When we live in a world with such problems as what is going on in Syria, homelessness, fuel poverty, famine in Africa, etc. Anyone who sees this as a priority is quite clearly an ignorant bafoon!
      Address the real world issues before getting het up about who falls in love with who.
      Steve Bell

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    3. The same people who say homophobia is bigotry say that rape is not okay, without fear of being labeled bigots, while the difference between rape and homosexual relationships is that in a homosexual relationship, both parties are to blame for the misdeed. This ridiculousness of supposedly "civilized" societies really makes me want to kill myself sometimes.

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    4. Regardless whether you support SSM or not, you have to recognize that it's consensual and no one gets hurt. How can you compare it to rape?

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  3. Jeremy argues that 'Equality is equality is equality' and that is surely the foundation for the argument in favour of a change in the law to recognise same-sex marriage.

    It is strange to my mind, but not surprising, that having given reasoned responses to arguments 1-8 and 10 he offers nothing but the weakest comment against probably the strongest argument in favour of keeping the current law and that is to be found in argument 9.

    IF equality is equality and IF we are to be free from 'intolerant, bigoted, discriminatory and hateful' positions in the debate can Jeremy tell me whether

    1) he thinks a man should be legally able to marry his sister?
    2) 3 or more parties should be free to enter into a marriage arrangement?
    3) whether a muslim should be permitted under British law to have 3 or 4 or more wives?

    Having rejected historical or biological arguments in favour of the 'equality' argument am I permitted to understand Jeremy to be in favour of all sorts of marriage 'arrangements' between consenting adults.

    If this is so - as surely logic on his part would require - then I am fearful that we will all 'suffer the consequences of your actions'

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    1. 1. Yes (having a child should be illegal)
      2. Yes
      3. Yes

      You should be able to do what you want as long as it doesn't hurt others.

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  4. Jeremy,

    Thanks for your thoughtful and specific responses to this post – I have responded below to each point

    1.You are right that marriage is a legal partnership - in fact a legal contract - recognized by the state. I am not in any way denying that. But the state defines marriage as ‘the voluntary union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others for life’. The UN Declaration of Human Rights also recognizes that it is ‘one man, one woman’. This is not primarily a religious issue – many religious people support the legalization of same sex marriage and many people of no faith do not. Are you suggesting that these people of no faith are also guilty of ‘blatant bigotry, discrimination and homophobia’ simply because they do not share your view? Are our legislators also guilty of these three things?

    2. Marriage and civil partnerships are covered by different acts of parliament indeed but can you tell me (and other readers) what legal rights married couples have that those in a civil partnership do not? Could you also explain by what legislative manoevre same sex marriage could be easily legalized? Have you read my post ‘Legalising same sex marriage is a can of worms’? You should.

    3. Yes but the Home Secretary has made it very clear that the consultation is not about whether same sex marriage should be legalized but how it should be legalized. That is highly undemocratic.

    4. No I am arguing exactly the opposite. Equality under the law does not necessarily mean uniformity.

    5. You are arguing here largely from silence as there is very little hard evidence available on the children of same sex marriages because same sex marriage is a very recent social experiment. Changing the law to allow same sex marriage would alter the definition of marriage for opposite sex couples because the two types of partnership cannot be easily accommodated under one legal umbrella.

    6. The distinctiveness criterion applies to the potential to have children by natural means, with or without assistance. This is not an option for same sex couples whose procreation depends on gamete donation meaning that their children are not biologically related to both parents.

    7. This is a non-sequitur. My point is that a costly and complex legal change that confers no new rights is not a priority at a time of economic recession – or ever.

    8. I repeat that if the law changes schools will be required to teach children a new definition of marriage that is a legal fiction. And parents with traditional views will as a result be discriminated against. That will be inevitable.

    9. It is already happening in Mexico and Canada as I outlined.

    10. You are arguing here that gay rights trump all other rights. I’m afraid that I don’t accept that. People should not be forced to act contrary to their consciences. Reasonable accommodation should always be made in a free and democratic society but there are a raft of UK cases which already demonstrate that when the law changes in these areas they lose that freedom.

    Peter

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    1. Dear Peter, in answer to response to Jeremy's reasonsed post:

      1. Yes, the whole world IS guilty of discrimination against Gay and Lesbian people, in some countries this is still enshrined in quite draconian laws. The statements about the definitoin of marriage are examples that linger from a past that we really should be putting behind us. Just because something IS, does not mean we can't change it. The reformation is a shining example, surely.
      2. Once again - just because legislation is difficult to change does not mean it should not be changed. If something is wrong and discriminatory then it should be put right. I don't believe it would be nearly as expensive as you claim - I think this is a false argument. And, as you say, if gay couples have the same legal rights as married hetrosexual couples - what could possibly be the objection? And, by the way, marriage is only marriage if it is ratified by the state - even a church wedding needs to the services of a registrar - who happens to be a priest, but the role is different. However, to be legal, no marriage needs to be ratified by a minister at all.
      3. Here's a challange. If there were a consultation and the majority chose to allow same sex marriage, would you then come quietly. I think not - the church would go on squealing about the tirany of the majority and anti religious bias in society. Remember, its only a tiny minority of people that actually attend church.
      4. Your original list of things some people could not do was a list of straw men. E.G: "not everyone can vote" - true convicted criminals and minors (both for obvious reasons). I don't think we should be likening sexual orientation to either criminality or lack of respnsibility and experience - do you?
      5. Then, there is no evidence either way - your point still falls.
      6. Sorry, there are plenty of Hetrosexual couples who are not able to have children even with assistance. I think we get this "marriage is for procreation" from Genesis chapter 1 or 2 - and lets face it, neither of these chapters are historically relaiable. A gay married couple are capable of properly bringing up children - that's the point. I know several who have done this.
      7. No new rights - but still discrimination. Discrimination of any kind on the grounds of race, gender or orientation is abhorrent and should not be allowed to stand in any decent society.
      8. I am a teacher and I'm sure that I have on occasions taught things that have conflicted with the views of some parents. For instance, I teach that racism of any type is wrong - and I know that some sets of parents still sue racist language and have racist views at home. Are they being discriminated against - I'm happy to tell their children that such views are wrong. I will also argue with children of parents who tell them that doning blood is wrong and that the world was created in six days (which it was not). To call this discrimination is rubbish - there are opposing views. The child and the parent are at liberty to hold these views - but being told that there is another view does not undermine their rights to hold them - only their right to live in a bubble and have nothing to do with society - which is not right. This argument really is nonsense of the first degree. And if the legal definition of marriage is changed - it is hardly a legal fiction is it? It's the law - and should be made clear.
      10. Once again. Rubbish! No one is forcing anyone to enter into a marriage with a member of the same sex. Hetrosexual couples will still get married, in churches and registry offices and country houses. That won't change. Exactly who's rights are being trampled here. Who is being forced to act contrary to their conscience. Who? And to do what? What, exactly are you frightned of?

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  5. 1. Article 16 of the UN Declaration of Human Rights states: "(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution. (2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses. (3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State." Nowhere in the paragraph is the phrase "one man, one woman" as you claim. It only refers to "men and women of full age", these are also the people who would be allowed to marry in same-sex marriages.

    Furthermore, stating the current law that marriage is between a man and a woman gives no reason why this should not change.

    2. I don't see why similarities or differences between civil partnerships and marriages should have any sway on their application to all. I have absolutely no problem with opposite-sex couples being allowed civil partnerships and same-sex couples being allowed marriage. Using different names is clearly designed to single out homosexual relationships as lesser. That may be your opinion, but has no place in law.

    3. I do agree that the parties should have put the equalisation of marriage in their election manifestos. However, the current law is discriminatory and I feel needs changing immediately, just as if it was discriminatory against race or religious persuasion. As for "appeasing a small minority", the most recent poll I could find shows about half the population want gay marriage legalised, a minority perhaps, but certainly not a small one: http://labs.yougov.co.uk/news/2011/10/04/one-five-britons-opposes-gay-marriage/

    4. I'm sorry but this is just a ludicrous argument.

    "Not everyone is allowed to drink alcohol, drive a car, buy property, cast a vote, own a firearm," Are you seriously suggesting that same-sex couples are like children or criminals? I don't believe you are but that is the implication of this statement.

    "attend university, visit Buckingham Palace or participate in a 100m women’s Olympic event." I would also be against a change in the law that required a minimum threshold of ability, such as strength, speed, academic prowess etc.

    The idea that equality means uniformity is not what anyone is arguing for. It's a straw man that you yourself have built.

    5. "Stable marriages and families headed by a mother and a father are the bedrock of society and the state has a duty to protect the uniqueness of these key institutions."
    No they're not and no it doesn't.

    "Though death and divorce may prevent it, children do best when raised by a married mother and father. Whilst single parents or same sex couples may do a good job in raising children, social policy has to be concerned with what is normally the case, and children have a right if at all possible to have a married mother and a father involved in their upbringing."

    A few things: The evidence shows that children with married parents do better than children with separated parents. This is not the same thing as 'marriage causes children to do better. Correlation does not equal causation. Secondly, the evidence shows that same sex parents do as well as opposite sex parents: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_parenting#Consensus

    "In general the evidence shows that marriage provides a stability for adults and children which is hard to beat in terms of outcomes. There is considerable evidence to show that marriage leads to better family relationships, less economic dependence, better physical health and longevity, improved mental health and emotional well-being and reduced crime and domestic violence."

    Then let same-sex couples marry.

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  6. 6. The previous commenter was correct. By your argument of biological determining of marriage law, infertile people should not be allowed to marry. Also I thus presume you would favour divorce once a woman goes through the menopause or has a hysterectomy etc.

    7. "Redefining marriage will be complex and expensive". Frankly, this is completely unimportant. The current legislation is discriminatory and should be changed. If marriage had been defined as being restricted to white people, would you argue that it should not be changed because of the cost? If not, then I hope you can see why people who consider LGBT people equal to heterosexual people do not consider the cost.

    8. Excellent. Children should be taught that LGBT people are just like everyone else and that discrimination against them is wrong. Wonderful.

    9. I think all consenting adult relationships should be allowed to enter into such marriage contracts.

    10. "If same sex marriage is legalised faith-based employers who provide special health benefits to married employees would be required by law to extend those benefits to same-sex ‘spouses’." Excellent. If you were giving health benefits to only white employees, I would feel the same.

    "They would also face lawsuits for taking any adverse employment action - no matter how modest - against an employee for the public act of obtaining a civil ‘marriage’ with a member of the same sex." Excellent. You shouldn't be able to affect someone's job prospects or even fire them for getting married.

    "Faith-based adoption and fostering services that place children exclusively with married couples would be required by law to place children with persons of the same sex who are civilly ‘married’. Marriage counsellors from faith backgrounds would be denied their professional accreditation for refusing to provide counselling in support of same-sex ‘married’ relationships." Brilliant. If you're providing a public service, you shouldn't be able to refuse to serve someone simply because they're gay or black etc.

    "All these moves would place faith groups in the invidious position of being forced to act against their consciences or face marginalisation, exclusion and litigation..." I imagine the same thing happened with enforcement of racial equality legislation.

    "...and would further fuel social fragmentation, sectarianism, antagonism and civil unrest." Nonsense. Any evidence?

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  7. I was about to comment but when I read Paul Southworth's comments, he's basically said everything I want to say.

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  8. @ Paul Southworth, second to last point - you missed the target completely there - check for yourself who was involved in the abolition of slavery, and who quietly worked away to obliterate racism - in the UK at least - the US has a wierd set up!

    Check the beliefs of those who I've referred to and then reconsider your point please.

    Racism is plain wrong - all peoples are born equal in God's eyes, and ALL have 'sinned' and fallen short of His standard. That is the core reason for Christ (God in human flesh) needing to come and do what he did, because none of us could do it for ourselves. Bear in mind this simple point when you slam Christians. We may not agree with you on many things, but the key point and driven message is that everyone, black, white, asian, gay, straight, celibate, old, young, able bodied, disabled, tall, short, thin, fat or any other property you can think of, has made mistakes that would put a barrier between them and God. Once that is dealt with, go ahead and argue with the architect of marriage and relationships who sacrificed Himself to restore a relationship - I'm sure he has the ultimate authority and as yet, not matter how hard I've argued with Him, I've never won an arguement because by His very nature, He knows everything and He knows what He created us for.

    And I remind you finally - don't just pick on the Church for being anti-same sex marriages - we are just the most obvious target, don't forget, Jews, Moslems, JW's, Athiests and Jo Blogs on the street - who are not so easy to target because they don't stick their heads above the parapet! Why target just the Church eh? stir the pot well and get everyone's views.

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    1. Largely Quakers in the early anti-slavery movements, US & UK.
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/6476645.stm

      British Quakers would like the law to be changed so that the same-sex marriages that we already carry out can be recognised in the same way as our opposite-sex marriages.

      I don't want other churches to have to marry same-sex couples, if they don't think it's right for them to do so. But I was there when Britain Yearly Meeting went through a process of discernment and came to the sense that it was God's will we should marry equally.

      Non-Quakers aren't allowed in Yearly Meeting sessions, so it's hard to explain how powerful Quaker Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business can be when we are seeking God's will together - but that was one of the times in my life when I have felt most sure that God was speaking to and through us as a community.

      Maybe I'm wrong, and I'll have to answer for that to God, but meanwhile all I can do is follow our convictions.

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  9. Oh boy, here goes...

    1. Marriage is the union of one man and one woman
    - Firstly, you're using a circular logic argument. You're asserting a false absolute. Secondly, laws are absolute only in their application, not in their permanence. It doesn't matter what some court in Victorian times said, laws can change.

    2. Same sex couples already have civil partnerships
    10/10 for observation, but they don't have the right to marry. That is a choice that don't have. They don't have what is already everyone else's option. That is discriminatory, promotes division and is needlessly exclusive. Legal equality is not enough when there is social division.

    3. Redefining marriage without consultation is undemocratic
    You say that "foisting" gay marriage on the British people is wrong, but that is not what's happening. The government is not forcing you to enter a gay marriage, so this is just scare-mongering, low-IQ, emotional drivel. Yes, you'll say that's an insult. Read it again, carefully. You'll see it's a fact. There is nothing undemocratic about equalising the rights of citizens within a polity.

    4. Equality does not mean uniformity
    To suggest gays should be banned from marriage in the same way 10-yr olds should be banned from the drinking alcohol is a patronising non-analogy. There is no reason why two mature, consenting adults should be deprived of a right that harms no other and costs nothing. If a traditional church wants to refuse, fine, but there are liberal denominations who have indicated their willingness to marry gays in their congregation.

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  10. 5. Protecting traditional marriage safeguards children and society
    This is a lie. There is NO objective or conclusive evidence WHATSOEVER to suggest that this assertion is even half true. Your point about sexual freedom etc. costing the country £100billion is not only dubious, but irrelevant, and also indirectly insulting to gays with yiour implication that gay marriage will lead to more sexual promiscuity. If anything, it will decrease it as gays enter into loving, monomagous relationships like marriage. You also say that "There is considerable evidence to show that marriage leads to better family relationships, less economic dependence, better physical health and longevity, improved mental health and emotional well-being and reduced crime and domestic violence." I don't disagree, but why on that basis exclude people from partaking in an institution you've just asserted has so many positive consequences?

    6. Marriage is a unique biologically complementary relationship
    This is totally irrelevant. Kids are born out of wedlock. Get over it. Just because some regard as marriage as the ideal forum in which to procreate does not mean the rights of others have to be restricted. Again, 10/10 for observing that gays can't reproduce (you don't say!), but they can adopt. A non point, and a petty thing to raise.

    7. Redefining marriage will be complex and expensive
    So bloody what? Setting up the NHS was expensive. What's your point here? That cost and complexity should rule us out from doing things. What an empty vision you have for how our society should function. Just dreadful.

    8. Schools will be forced to teach about the new definition of marriage
    Tough, quite frankly. Tough. The law is the law. I went to a church school, but my morality still came from home. If parents want to teach their kids at home that gays are unequal, I can't stop them. Shame on them in any case, but don't suggest kids are going to be brainwashed en masse with some progressive gay agenda. It's nonsense.

    9. Redefining marriage will not stop with same sex marriage
    Ah, yes, the slippery slope argument. They no doubt said something similar back in the 60s. "Decriminalise homosexuality? But then our kids will see them on the streets holding hands! And one day they'll want marriage!"
    Scare-mongering again? Pathetic.

    10. Redefining marriage will lead to faith-based discrimination
    No, it won't. Not if the law is drafted correctly, hence why the government is proceeding with consultation.

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  11. Overall then, a weak article at best.

    It's reassuring actually. If your arguments can be cut down as easily this, it gives me hope the rest of the country will see sense just as easily.

    I'm no philosophical genius, but your arguments truly are dreadful.

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  12. @Anonymous (the one that replied to my comments). Your first paragraph doesn't seem to have any bearing on the question of whether marriage should be restricted only to heterosexual couples. Secondly, you accuse me of targetting only "the church". I'm not sure which church you're talking about. You may notice that I never mention any religion in my responses at all. Could you explain to me how exactly I'm "picking on the church"?

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  13. As a Bible-believing, born again Christian, I can completely support Gay marriage. Jesus himself said to those wanting to make an issue of marriage (Mark 1:24): "Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? 25 When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven."

    Marriage is not an issue of salvation. It is for this present life and for a fallen world, and has traditionally been the commitment before God of one man and one woman. But we now recognise that some people, for reasons that are still not understood, are sexually and emotionally attracted to people of their own sex.

    This attraction is not chosen, and to many, it is a burden. Our job is not to judge, but to enable people to live joyously and gloriously free as Christians.

    To allow Permanent, Faithful, Stable same-sex partnerships, where the commitment to God is to love, support and remain faithful to the one partner, seems to me to be a natural response of Christian faith. It does not judge. It does not corrupt - quite the reverse, in fact. And it is for this life only.

    In a fallen world, we need to be able to make compromises to allow Christians to live Holy lives in whatever situation they find themselves in.

    It could well be argued that the refusal of Christians to provide Holy, sanctified models of life-long partnerships for gay people has contributed considerably to evils of our current society.

    Let's go back to our theology. Christ died for all, without exception, and welcomes anyone who sincerely wishes to build a holy, life-long partnership with the person to whom they are most sexually and emotionally attracted. It is not our place to judge, but to honour and celebrate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
      Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
      For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error." Romans 1:22-27.

      The Bible speaks quite openly against homosexuality, whether it's in a stable, life-long partnership or not.

      You claim to be a bible-believing Christian, yet you seem to ignore the entirety of Romans if that it your opinion. Does that mean we hate homosexuals? No, we love them as Christ loves us. But we are convicted by the Holy Spirit on our sin. Homosexual relationships and lust are sins, and anyone who argues otherwise and claims to be a bible believing Christian is fooling themselves.

      Delete
    2. Gosh - I hope your women all wear hats in church - I presume you are against women ministers too. Treating the writings of a man, in this case Paul, as a text book for life is not helping the church or the faith. He was as tied in to the morals of his time as we are to ours. You'll have me thinking you believe the world is 6 days old next, and get me going out to dash the heads of foreign children against rocks! This, turn-off-my-brain view of scripture does not wash. I believe in Jesus, where does it say I have to have this fundamental view of the Bible (a book assembled by men)

      Delete
    3. And that men don't have long hair too... Sorry Richard but a quick look at where this teaching is coming from, namley its cultural context would quickly dispel this notion.
      And to Anon. who wrote about marriage being a salvation matter, technically you are right but only in a binary manner. However, your comment opens up a whole can of worms regarding Christians and sex, sexuality and relationships, that has been poorly carried out over the years. However, using the example from Mark's gospel is slightly off since the marriage you are talking about is male-female, homosexuality was against Jewish law so the idea of a gay marriage here is frankly laughable. The Jewish people had very strict notions about who they could date and many Christians would do well to interpret scripture the way they did. I am not saying you don't but I am meaning world wide and in general.

      Delete
  14. This list is stupid. Grow up and use your time and money on more important issues like poverty and war. Shame on you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will find lots of articles on this site on poverty and justice issues. And blogspot charges me nothing to post here.

      Delete
  15. I don't think we have you argue with gays. The more you argue the more you're digging a hole I find you are always biting and showing any amount of hate towards heterosexuals who basically don't want to hear you go on about these things.Can you just not accept that male female marriages have been here for 2000 years at least.
    just accept you're a minority because you're simply different from the rest of us. And be happy you can have civil relationships fully recognised by the state. Why do you want marriage. It's not for the State to grant that. it's the church.So now you see as the church as your great adversary. So what-it has the right to decide who they want to marry. They have stated it's not on the agenda. Can you not accept their verdict?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. (to make it clear, I am not the same 'Anonymous' person as any of the previous commenters, and clearly cannot speak for their views)

      Certainly, I, as a gay person, am perfectly prepared to accept that I am in a minority, that's a fairly obvious fact.
      It does not, however, follow that my status as part of a minority should mean that I am denied the same rights as the majority. During the fight for equal rights for people of ethnic minorities, those minorities were not trying to claim that they were a majority, they were simply stating that the factor that made them a minority (namely their ethnicity) did not mean that they should be denied equal rights with the majority. The fact that racial discrimination had been around for thousands of years (and is very much evident in, and even arguably sanctioned by, the Bible) did not mean that racial discrimination was right. Your argument that heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time therefore seems to me to be fairly meaningless.
      Moreover, the government is proposing to make CIVIL, and not religious, marriage available to homosexual couples. They have even specifically stated that they are not trying to change any religious definition of marriage, and, under the current proposals, even religious groups that have publicly expressed a wish to be allowed to conduct homosexual marriages would continue to be prohibited from doing so. Given that the church currently has absolutely no involvement in heterosexual civil marriages, I can see no reason why the church should be granted a say in homosexual civil marriages.
      I also take issue with your implication that the church as a whole is entirely united in its opposition to gay marriage. I am a Christian myself, and attend a CofE church every week, which I consider to be a hugely important part of my life. As a result I am able to say that I have seen much support for gay rights from within my church community, including from the vicar of my church, who is a prominent figure in the fight for equality, acceptance and inclusion within the church as a whole.
      I feel perfectly able to reconcile my Christian faith (including my knowledge of the Bible) with my own homosexuality, as I feel that the Biblical passages which are cited as evidence that homosexuality is somehow wrong do not reflect the messages of love, inclusion and equality which are so prevalent in the teachings of Jesus. The Bible is not a book, it is a library of 66 books, each written with a specific purpose, and for a specific audience. It saddens me that many in the modern church seem to have lost sight of this in their desire to see and treat the Bible as a one-stop guide to God and the Christian faith. The Bible has been used to justify everything from the slave trade to the holocaust to the denial of women's rights, and therefore I am not inclined to take the Biblical justifications for denying equal rights to gay people seriously. The Christian marriage service often includes the line 'marriage is a gift from God to his people'. As one of God's people, I feel entitled to partake in my share of that gift.
      Finally, I feel simply patronised by the insinuation that homosexual relationships are undeserving of equal recognition with heterosexual relationships. People constantly fall back on stereotypes of gay people (particularly gay men) which they use to suggest that gay people are fundamentally promiscuous. Whilst this is true of some gay people, it is also true of large numbers of heterosexual people, and is certainly not true of gay people in general. I have been raised on Christian principles regarding the importance of monogamy and commitment, and am deeply insulted by the insinuation that I might somehow be less capable of forming a relationship to which I could be sufficiently commited to build a marriage than a heterosexual person.

      Delete
    2. Sorry to disagree with your points regarding slavery and the holocaust. No where in the Bible does it condon such actions. When talking about slaves it does so almost toatally in a negative manner. Besides slavery is an act from a fallen world. Marriage predates it in Genesis.

      Delete
    3. Sorry, but that is not true. The Bible clearly condones slavery-

      "When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)"

      "When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)"

      You can't ignore the fact that these are the teachings directed at the people

      New Testament-

      "Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)"

      Delete
    4. I don't understand how people can say that not changing the definition of marriage is denying anyone *equal* rights. The one man, one woman definition of marriage is available to everyone, including those who suffer from SSA. The fact that you can't find anybody of the opposite sex that is good enough for you doesn't make it discrimination. We don't ask for a redefinition of arson in the case in which we feel like burning down your house, so why do you insist upon taking away our definition of marriage simply because you are too stubborn to comply?

      Delete
    5. Anonymous25 March 2012 07:19 actually it's not the church's right to grant marriage, i have no idea where you've obtained that falsity. Marriage is a legal construct, not a religious right as you seem to claim.
      But then you seem to be full of hot air tbh.
      Heterosexual relationships have been around far longer than 2000 years, just as homosexual relationships have been around far longer than 2000 years, off the top of my head i can think of the ancient greek city states of sparta and athens, whose warriors used to sleep with their brothers in arms to maintain morale.
      Also homosexuality has been found in almost every animal species investigated to date.
      Shawn Franchi3 November 2012 22:55
      What unlogical hate filled bile you're sprouting. The UK's legal definition of marriage clearly discriminates against homosexuals, because it is denying them the right to marry the person they love.
      I'm assuming you're christian, so i ask you this, do you think that your hate filled vitriol towards homosexuals would be approved of by your God? He tells you to love your neighbour, that's a law of moses i believe, i believe in the bible somewhere it says all sin is equal in the eyes of the Lord. So you hating your homosexual neighbour is as bad in the eyes of the Lord, as your neighbours homosexuality.

      Delete
  16. and to anonymous above I find it hard you say you're a church goer (or a christian and yet support this). Does your religioun not say you've to live the holy life you're suggesting. Supporting male on male does not seem that holy to me and I'm sure most of the readers. Perhaps you are gay yourself and if so you shouldn't be devious forby.
    It's simply not acceptable for many people in our country. So if you want to discriminate against your church and what they're telling you -then that's for you to deal with- I suggest leave it before it leaves you.

    ReplyDelete
  17. What happened to the 2 posts I made earlier?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Were they criticising this article by any chance?

      Delete
    2. I have only deleted posts on this page which used obscene language.

      Delete
    3. Or posts that provide uncomfortable facts, as it would seem when you deleted my comments on this post, Peter:

      http://pjsaunders.blogspot.jp/2012/12/why-opinion-polls-supporting-euthanasia.html

      Delete
  18. "3.Redefining marriage without consultation is undemocratic"

    Vile religious dogma has nothing to do with democracy and its sole purpose is to control the desperately needy.

    ReplyDelete
  19. LOL!! Again religion attempts to tell people what is best for them, based on the best known work of fiction in earths history.

    When will you people stop with the god nonsense? We all know he/she/it doesn't exist, so move on already.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was not actually aware that my article used one faith-based argument. Why don't you read it properly and engage with it intelligently?

      Delete
  20. Thank you so much for this post! You have really cheered me up today!

    I mean, this article is sarcastic right?! Because I don't believe for one second that any adult in their right mind could actually believe in these reasons... And if they did, I don't understand why they would want to enforce their views on everyone else...

    How about trying to use blogging platforms like these to spread a bit of love, acceptance and peace, rather than inciting hatred? Seems very un-Christian to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many people sincerely hold my position having thought it through. 436,000 have so far signed the C4M petition. You need to engage with the arguments rather than just going for ad hominem attacks. The fact that I disagree with legalising same sex marriage (a legitimate political position) does not mean that I dislike gay people.

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  21. I cannot believe that in this day and age there are still people in the world who live by these laws. Being gay is not a modern thing it goes right back in to history. The difference with today's society is that we are tolerant and accepting.
    The most offensive thing of all to me is that a religious group could be so utterly intolerant and homophobic and freely preach it.
    You do not choose your sexuality, you are born like it.
    You cannot change it, although the frightened amongst us can lie and pretend.
    On a serious note. How would you feel if your child was gay, but lead a life which was a lie?
    Where they were repressed and depressed instead of living a happy, fulfilled life?
    I think you would happily have a repressed child, which, considering you proclaim peace, love and joy is a contradiction, isn't it??
    I feel sad for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The idea that sexual orientation is set and fixed at birth for all people is a myth invented by sections of the gay lobby without any evidence base.

      Delete
  22. Wow,looks like the vast majority of people think your arguments are poor - and that's because they are. It's a problem, isn't it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No most here have not even engaged with the arguments but just expressed their opinions. 436,000 have so signed the C4M petition as against 43,000 on C4EM so there is a lot of support for these arguments.

      Delete
    2. I doubt any of them have even bothered to read the "arguments", such as they are. Most will have used visceral emotion, not reason.

      Delete
  23. I'm a gay manand I would like to get married one day. since when has marriage had to do with the church. just because it's perfromed(most of the time) in a church does not give peado priests the right to stop us getting married. WE'RE GAY. GET OVER IT!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have never been a big supporter of marriage if some are excluded. I heard the speakers on Radio 4 thid morning and I believe the proponents of this campaign aer wicked.

      Delete
    2. Mark - I would have to disagree with you. They are not wicked; they merely have an additional set of moral values.

      Anti-gay marriage proponents put loyalty to the group, respect for tradition and sanctity higher up the scale than others who value care for others, freedom from oppression and justice more than the other 3 values.

      It's a classic conservative (with a small c) vs liberal argument and targets not the intellect, but the instinct.

      Delete
    3. You reply very reasonably whilst I am still seething. Perhaps the best outcome would be fore noone to get married until the matter has been resolved.

      Perhaps less controversially new spokespeople might be found so as not to alienate the entire population.

      Delete
    4. If you really want to get married, I hope you will work hard to try to overcome your same-sex attraction. I experienced some SSA when I was a teenager. I've found that if you wear a rubber band around your wrist and give yourself a painful snap whenever your mind entertains such wicked thoughts, you will gradual experience healing. Your wrist may be a bit scarred, but it will heal in time.

      Delete
    5. Shawn - I don't have a same sex attraction - I'm fully hetero. However, I don't begrudge homosexuals getting married. It's no skin off my nose.

      Delete
    6. Shawn, i really feel sorry for you, you have been lied to and taught to blindly follow. What you are saying sounds like someone from 300 years ago. If you have a basic level of intelligence and really question some of the 'truths' of your faith i believe you will find the real contradictions there.
      Also, some people might find it offensive the way you brand homosexuality as an affliction, i for one find it a rather uncomfortable read.
      You know, some monks used to flay themselves when they had 'sinned' It's a rather medieval concept to punish yourself for having had homosexual thoughts.

      Delete
  24. Peter Saunders, I thought (as you are a church goer) that you would be a person who would maybe help other people. listen to people. understand people. but no, you are turning people against people with your pathetic articles. you should be ashamed of yourself. is this what the church is turning into? maybe religion, after all, is the cause of all problems. why would anyone turn to you i do not know. I seriously suggest that you sit and think before you write anything else you pathetic man!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Couldn't agree more. Organisations like this are the reason nobody goes to church any more and it is increasingly becoming irrelevant.
      Crumbling buildings filled with narrow minded, hate-filled, brainwashed lemmings, sadly and desperately clinging to a 2000 year old work of fiction because they're too scared or stupid to make up their own mind about the World they live in isn't attractive to anyone. People are gay. You're not going to get eternal life by filling a collection box every week and funding corrupt and sexually deviant institutions. Get over it. Live the life you have without worrying about what happens after it and enjoy the people God sent to share it with you...

      Delete
  25. Steve Hammett13 April 2012 06:21

    Point 3 - You assert that the commitment to change the law to allow same-sex marriage was not in any political party manifestos. This is incorrect. The Conservative Party Equalities Manifesto (p14)* clearly states that they would consider introducing legislation to allow same-sex marriage. This was also reported during the 2010 general election by the Daily Telegraph.**

    * http://www.conservatives.com/News/News_stories/2010/05/~/media/Files/Downloadable%20Files/Manifesto/Equalities-Manifesto.ashx

    ** http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/election-2010/7673249/General-Election-2010-Conservatives-may-reclassify-gay-civil-partnership-as-marriage.html

    ReplyDelete
  26. Point 10- not being allowed to discriminate does not mean you are being discriminated against.

    ReplyDelete
  27. From what I can see, these 'arguments' are nothing more than a smokescreen for a morality judgement - aka religion.

    "When a group of people make something - say marriage - sacred, the members of the cult lose the ability to think clearly about it. Morality binds and blinds. The true believers produce pious fantasies that son't match reality, and at some point someone comes along to knock the idol from its pedestal."

    Jonathan Haidt (Psychologist) "The Reighteous Mind"

    ReplyDelete
  28. Hi Peter - You are right, many support the arguments against legalising same sex marriage, and I am one of those who have signed the petition.

    It is a shame that Dr Saunders' arguments seem to have been mistaken for being purely anti-gay or pro-religion, when really they reflect hundreds of thousands of people's concerns for the future of their families and the negative impact that this potential new (forced?) move from the government will have on ALL of society - gay, not gay, religious and non-religious, Christians as well as people of other faiths. People who are against legalisation have good reasons to be and should not be silenced or denied the right to add their voice to the debate (after all won't our taxes be paying for it?).

    Thank you Peter for giving us that voice.
    --S

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Future of families? Please could you explain your reasoning, as I fail to see any connection whatsoever?

      Delete
    2. '...people's concerns for the future of their families...'

      It is difficult to see how allowing homosexuals to marry will affect the future of existing or future heterosexual marriages. Unfortunately the same arguments were advanced for prohibiting civil partnerships. For those of us old enough to remember it, the same arguments were used in the US to support the anti-misgenation laws. These arguments have always represented prejudice masquerading as Christianity, which is very regrettable and sad in the way it undermines the Christian message amongst young people today.

      '...after all won't our taxes be paying for it?'

      Atheists and homosexuals pay taxes as well. Most Christians also happily pay taxes that sponsor the killing of others in conflicts, despite Jesus's call for swords to be transformed into ploughshares - whilst inconsistently opposing abortion and euthanasia. Most Christians, if only by their silence (the sin of ommision) also support the immiseration of disabled people thorough the loss of DLA, etc. Rather than focusing Christian energy and resources on discriminating against historically (& currently) persecuted minorities, Christians should be focussing those limited resources on fighting for a society that rejects economic injustice.

      Delete
  29. Re #8
    There is a really important role for schools here. Children who are unfortunate enough to grow up in homophobic and bigoted households desperately need to have these views challenged so to reduce the likelihood of it being carried forward to the next generation. Just as for those children who pick up racist views from their families. To do otherwise is tantamount to child abuse.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I fail to understand how morality equates to bigotry. However, that seems to be the main argument. "I like to do wicked things and anybody who wants to stop me is a closed-minded bigot because obviously anybody who doesn't think that I should be able to do what I want just because I feel like it is closed-minded and it doesn't matter if most people agree with them, I don't care because everybody else is wrong and I'm right because it's not fair that I should want to do something and not be able to do it!" Furthermore, the arguments of the same-sex marriage sympathizers tend to ignore the majority population that will be just as affected by the laws as the minority to which it gives special rights. Pedophiles, rapists, serial killers, homosexuals: they cannot be argued with. Their argument is always that they are going to do what they want to do, whether it is okay or not. Although I don't necessarily agree with Saudi Arabia's classification of homosexuality as a capital crime, I am starting to understand what might lead them to resort to such measures.

      Delete
    2. Wow, please don't ever exercise your right to vote.
      Your view of homosexuals is extremely unhealthy and warped.
      These things are only wicked in your opinion, and forcing your opinion on them is where the bigoted tag comes into play.
      Your argument =
      'I don't think you should be allowed jam on your toast because i think jam is wrong, toast should only be allowed with marmalade, that is what toast was designed for and everyone that has jam on toast is evil and wicked. People shouldn't be allowed to have jam on their toast just because they like jam and not marmalade! How am i bigoted for telling them that they can't have jam on their own toast?!?!'
      P.s. This metaphor stars: Toast as marriage, Jam as same sex relationships, and Marmalade as opposite sex relationships.

      Also lumping homosexuals (legal and rightly so) with criminal activities such as paedophilia, rape and murderers makes the bigot tag seem rather justified.

      Same sex marriage gives no rights to paedophiles, murderers or rapists. considering a larger percentage of the population is heterosexual, it is also true that a larger proportion of the perpetrators of said crimes are heterosexual.

      The majority of the population will not in fact be affected by the legalisation of same sex marriages (Shock!!!)

      Delete
  30. I believe that the church does nothing but brainwash people to be honest. Im not religious. I have nothing against people who believe in god and want to go to church. I'm happy to resepect that but this just isn't not fair. with all the terrorist and london riot situations, this is what the church chooses to protest about. incase you were wondering, I am gay and VERY PROUD OF IT!!!!! and guess what PETER SAUNDERS. we are not going anywhere!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  31. People will always be entitled to their religion and their opinion. Why should we (lesbians) not be entitled to the same rights to build a family and get married? There will always people who disagree, but schools will have to take into account that some of their students will be of same sex families or grow up to be gay themselves! The gay community is growing and it is already difficult to live without discrimination, so why should we not have the equal rights? I am a lesbian and very happy, I want to get married to. Some people are gay, so you're going to have to get used to it!!

    ReplyDelete
  32. The above comments will continue for ever. However, I don't think anyone mentioned much concerning children.When some talk of 2 Dads or 2 Mums they will be asking why they don't have one or the other.
    I don't doubt for one minute that young children can feel loved by whoever is looking after them.But as children get older they ask questions, as we know from so many adopted children(not just from films!)who then make it their life mission to find their 'real' parents which often leads to very complicated situations some even resulting in suicide.
    As a child of divorced parents I see what a big effect it had on my youngest brother who was only 12 at the time. And the effect
    it had on our own children as we had to visit 2 different places.
    We are all becoming so selfish. In our youngest daughter's class half of the children were from divorced families.She came home with stories of what these 8&9 yr olds were planning to ask their
    fathers for when they next saw them as they could get anything, they reckoned.Most of these children were spoilt as the parents felt guilty and didn't know how to make it up to their children.
    As a teacher I know something of what these children are going through.
    We celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary this year. Life has not always been easy, but we didn't give up.Each of our children has at some point thanked us for the stable upbringing they received.
    So many of their friends did not/ have not had that and most of them have problems.So many on drugs these days, or with personality problems......
    Everyone wants to know who they are, where they came from, and where they are going.
    These days everyone wants to look for the answers everywhere except the Bible! We are created by God, loved by Him, and He wants us to be with Him for eternity.But we have a choice, to accept or reject His offer. As Christians we do not become perfect, but God loves us and forgives us when we go to Him, confessing that we have failed to be what He wants us to be.
    There is real peace in knowing that we are loved and accepted-something everyone is looking for, and the good news is that it available to all.

    ReplyDelete
  33. 1) The "union between one man and one woman" comes from a time when gay relationships were not recognised. This was due to bigotry and selective blindness, as gay relationships were happening all the time, including within the elites of society, and the church.

    2) Civil partnerships don't give all the same benefits as marriage, legally. As long as the availability of unions is different for same-sex and opposite-sex couples, we have a two-tier society where gay and bisexual people are treated as second class citizens. This is not ok.

    3) Er, there is a consultation....

    4) The argument about "not everyone can attend university" shows that you are clearly an elitist from a privileged background who is out of touch with the rest of the world. The fact that not everyone can go to university is NOT A GOOD THING. It is reflective of the massive divides between the majority of working class people and the privileged few. Whilst not everyone should or needs to go to uni (and I wish less emphasis were placed on it), the fact that there is a massive social barrier which stops people being able to go on grounds of class, is appalling. Again, the examples of drinking and driving are also ridiculous. No one is suggesting that we bring in same-sex marriage for children....

    5) There is no evidence to suggest that opposite-sex parents are better parents than same-sex parents. And please explain to me how "sexual freedom" has anything to do with this. A same-sex couple marrying would (one would hope) have the same intentions of fidelity as an opposite-sex couple. Infidelity is not the preserve of any sexual orientation.

    6) So men and women should only get married to have children? Therefore, couples who have fertility problems, or who don't wish to have children, shouldn't marry? The world is grossly overpopulated, we should applaud people who take the responsible decision not to reproduce, and even more so those who forego the option of having their own children in order to provide a loving home for a child who already exists and needs that stability. A same-sex couple can do this just as well as a straight couple.

    7) Improving access to building for people with disabilities is expensive - ramps, lifts, loops systems etc. Are you saying that we should prevent them from accessing the same services as able-bodied people, because it's too expensive? You can't put a price on equality, and we can't call ourselves civilised until we treat all sections of society equally and fairly.

    8) That's a good thing, Mrs Thatcher. Diversity is what makes the human race so amazing. Kids needs to be taught that relationships outside the man-woman norm are ok and very normal. Love is love, and it's gender-blind. Next you'll saying we shouldn't be teaching them about interracial relationships. And yes, people who object to their children learning about LGBT relationships ARE homophobes. That includes you.

    9) First of all, bisexuals WTF? Bisexual does not equal polyamorous. It means one feels attraction to all genders, but doesn't necessarily mean being in relationships with more than one person. Polyamory occurs across all sexual orientations. And the "same-sex marriage will lead to polyamorous marriage" argument is tired and ridiculous. No one is proposing that, and I doubt they would. Next we'll be hearing the arguments "it'll lead to child marriage, goat marriage, bus marriage..."

    10) It has been made explicitly clear that religious organisations will have no obligation to conduct same-sex marriage. Same sex couples will have access to CIVIL marriage. Religious bigot will be allowed to carry on with their bigotry. And guess what? Most religious people are in favour of allowing same-sex couple to marry anyway.

    The world is an amazing diverse place, it's time that UK legislation reflected that.

    ReplyDelete
  34. The title of this article is misleading. A more accurate title would be "10 Lame Rationalizations for Antihomosexual Bigotry."

    ReplyDelete
  35. The success of an article can be determine by how much participation awakes ans surely the arguments on the post upset and unleash the anger of the LGTB party, i think Peter Saunders gives a valuable support and solid contribution to those who fight for the truth marriage. The all time story of: "as long as gay marriage does not harm others" is unvalid, since gay marriage affects the whole society.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Paul - that must be the weakest argument I've ever heard. I am neither gay nor lesbian - I just gravitate toward justice and shy away from naked bigotry.

      Delete
  36. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  37. Let me come up with my own reasons.

    1) God said that it is abomination and that if you did it, you would have blood on your hands and your life would be forfeit.

    2) AIDS - In addition to AIDS, there are 15 cancers specific to homosexual men caused by the type of sex that they have and often involving the transmittal of human waste. My mother is a nurse so don't argue with me on that one.

    3) My favorite uncle was a homosexual and he died of AIDS. He was 30 years old but he looked 80 by the time it finished with him.

    4) Another cousin of mine was bi-sexual but mostly homosexual but he stopped when AIDS started and he got married but he had been having anal sex for so long that he now has cancer of the bladder, has to wear a colostomy bag and has not been able to have an erection in 10 years.

    5) Loss of democracy. 7 million people in California voted to keep marriage between a man and a woman and a homosexual judge decided that he didn't like that and over turned it. If you overturn the votes of people for one thing, you'll overturn it for another thing. The people of California should be screaming bloody murder.

    6) Divine retribution. People always forget that God is paying attention. If you look at Sri Lanka, where they had that huge Tsunami a few years ago, that country has a 1 in 3 rate of children under the age of 16 involved in the sex trade. Hurricane Katrina happened at a time when the homosexuals were getting ready to have a Southern Decadence festival. People say but yeah, that part of New Orleans did not get hit as hard as the others but another explanation could be that your tolerance of these things can cost you. Before homosexual marriage was shoved down our throats in NY, I can't even remember the last time we had a hurricane. As soon as it passed, we had a minor earthquake and hurricane Irene in the same week. Now, here it is, a little over a year later and we just had another devastating hurricane. In both cases, the meteorologists’ were dumbfounded at the way the hurricane came right at us, especially Sandy because it was going out to sea and then made a hard left turn and landed on us. One said that he has been watching and reporting on hurricanes for 30 years and he has never seen the like.

    7) Loss of personal freedom of speech. I have a friend who was hounded out of her job by a vicious homosexual because when he invited her to his gay wedding, she said thank you but no thanks, I am not into that. He proceeded to hound her, and the company backed him and it got so bad she left. Since when can't you say what you feel?

    8) Loss of parental control. In Massachusetts, teachers are teaching children as young as the second grade about gay marriage and if a parent wants to opt their child out, they can't because it's legal.

    9) Genocide. If you put ten homosexual men on a desert island and come back 20 years later, what will you find? Either the same 10 men or less but certainly not more. If you put 10 lesbians, same deal. But if you put 10 men and 10 women, chances are you will have more because children will be born and life will continue.

    10) If young boys, who have not even decided on their sexuality are being taught that it's okay to marry another boy, who will marry the women? That to me is the real war on women.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought the hurricanes were targeted straight at the God Fearers as punishment for being bigots.

      Delete
    2. 1) A matter of opinion and only relevant if you believe in your God. As such, an irrelevant argument and only applicable to believers.
      2) There is a multiplicity of cancers heterosexuals can get from engaging in sex. You are factually incorrect is saying gay people are more susceptible to cancers. Please provide proof.
      3) AIDs affects more heterosexual people than homosexual – just go to Africa and see.
      4) Irrelevant.
      5) This has nothing to do with democracy. Democracy cannot ever be justified for oppression. I’d have thought your own country’s history would have shown you that (I’m assuming you’re American).
      6) The argument that floods and hurricanes are signs of God’s displeasure is untestable. They could equally be down to global warming, or just bad weather.
      7) A red herring and anecdotal. I simply can’t believe this story – and what has it to do with free speech? No-one is denying your right to free speech.
      8) Why would you want to opt out?
      9) Probably the most facile of your arguments and scraping the barrel in terms of intellectual analysis.
      10) Homosexuality is not choice one makes – totally irrelevant

      Delete
    3. 1) God also said murder was a sin but then he's killed a fair few people...
      2)I suppose all those heterosexual people with AIDS weren't mentioned because they disprove your point? Also, Heterosexual people can get cancer from having sex, also, heterosexual couples can have anal sex...
      3)Yes, people die of AIDS, i'm sorry for your loss.
      4)Again, Heterosexuals have anal sex too..
      5)I can't remember all the details but i'm pretty sure there was more to it than that..
      6)Maybe Sri Lanka has a high amount of sex trade workers because its a country with an uneven spread of wealth? God doesn't exist so to suggest divine intervention is slightly benign. Increasing amounts of flood and storm events are consistent with evidence about climate change. It's a direct result of warmer oceans.
      7)I'm tempted to believe there's more to that story, otherwise your friend would have successfully sued her previous employers. And just because one person can be bitchy and ott, does not mean that legalizing homosexual marriage will lead to a loss of freedom of speech.
      8)Why would parents not want their children to know that normal humans have gay relationships? is it because it undermines their argument that gays are social pariahs?
      9)Legalising same sex marriage do not instantly mean the marginalisation of heterosexual. Same sex marriage will do nothing to slow the rate of birth, other than that i can't see what you're suggesting?
      10)Since homosexuality isn't really a choice (other than the choice to ignore bigotry and stigma) the argument is quite defunct. Homosexuality is extremely natural, it will never be a majority in the human race. And have you considered that the women could marry each other?
      Or that the naturally heterosexual men (like myself) will want to be with the women?

      Delete
    4. 2 points.

      According to the CDC, active homosexual males, which are only about 1.2% of the population, are responsible for almost 50% of all new cases of HIV infection in the U.S. every single year.

      While it is always a tragedy when a child cannot grow-up in a loving home raised by his or her natural mother and father, that is sadly often a reality of our fallen nature and world, however to actually have that as a stated goal of the the fascist homosexual lobby, to deliberately deny a child either a father or mother, rather demonstrates just how sick and twisted they truly are.

      Delete
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  40. MERRY CHRISTMAS!! My bride and I are celebrating my SEVENTH ANNIVERSARY! SEVEN YEARS ago Jesus set me FREE from the sin of homosexuality, HALLELUJAH!!! Today my wife is also pregnant and we are so thankful to Jesus for this wonderful miracle. JESUS IS LORD!!! I used to be addicted to men, but 7 years ago Jesus set me FREE! (YouTube video) On Facebook and YouTube I go by xgaygreg.

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  42. Same-sex marriage is not beneficial or useful to society. Therefore the state should not recognise it.

    It is not beneficial because it is not naturally geared towards procreation, for obvious reasons.

    Now, before people bring up infertile couples, I say that the fact that they can't have children is a non-argument as it is not the state's role to demand a couple have a fertility test before they get married. This would be infringing on their privacy. Nevertheless, it can make a reasonable assumption (i.e. that in most cases, a man and a woman can and will procreate). Whether or not they actually do does not negate this reasonable assumption.
    On the other hand, with same-sex couples, the state can make no such assumption, as any procreation that takes place will have been carried out by an extraordinary means, i.e. surrogacy, which is NOT reasonable to expect. Therefore, there is a significant difference between the state assuming that opposite-sex couples will have children (a reasonable assumption, without having to pry) and the state banking on a same-sex couple possibly deciding on having children via an extraordinary means.

    I repeat, the state only recognised marriage historically because of its link to procreation. It doesn't recognise or regulate any other relationship except perhaps the relationship between the parents and their children, which in turn is related to marriage.

    Why should a random couple receive recognition by the state otherwise? Cui bono?

    It is for the sake of children that marriage should be stable, permanent, exclusive and between a woman and a man.

    ReplyDelete
  43. While a male may intrinsically feel the compulsion to sodomise other males, and that disordered (and rather disgusting) inclination may or may not also be accompanied with romantic feelings, how does any of that make of that person into "a people"?

    Races are ontologically different. There is an ontological difference between men and women. But how in the world is the desire to commit acts of homosexual sodomy in any way an ontology?

    If it is not wrong, immoral, or depraved, for males to sodomise each other, is it also not wrong, immoral, or depraved, for two consenting adult brothers to sodomise each other?

    And since homosexual sodomy and copulation are always intrinsically sterile, and since it is physically impossible for those making a conscious choice to live in a homosexual relationship to ever consummate a marriage from that relationship, what is the philosophical principle mandating that government and society must treat intrinsically unequal relationships as equal?

    ReplyDelete

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  45. Is it not the case that you are actually against the concept of same sex marriage because you believe that God is against it and this colours everything that you say?

    I don't especially have a problem with you believing that God is against same sex marriages, if that is what you believe.

    It just seems strange that God doesn't get much of a mention in the title of any of the 10 reasons that you give.

    ReplyDelete