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The Long Road To Societal Change

[ Posted Monday, June 24th, 2013 – 16:46 PDT ]

This is an article about Paula Deen, racism, and the upcoming gay marriage decisions from the Supreme Court. But mostly it's an article about the long, slow road to true changes in American society. The beginning of this road always starts with the prevailing casual acceptance of bigotry and prejudice in everyday life, and the road doesn't end until society as a whole reaches the point of near-universal condemnation of a way of thinking which used to be widespread and unremarkable.

Paula Deen is currently in the news for her racist language and racist thinking. She is a television celebrity chef, or at least she used to be before her show was unceremoniously cancelled last week. What brought this on was a deposition taken in a court case where Deen is being sued by employees of her restaurant. In it, Deen admits to using racist language, specifically saying the "N-word." Other stories are coming to light about her general attitudes on racial relations, both in the present day and in the antebellum South.

While there are plenty who are condemning Deen over what has so far been reported, there is also a groundswell of support for her, using what could be called the "older Southerners will be older Southerners" defense. Deen, this explanation tells us, comes from a different generation and therefore was raised in a different world than that which exists today. Those condemning Deen counter that this should not matter, since (to give but one obvious example) Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech will celebrate its fiftieth anniversary later this year. How long does the woman need, for Pete's sake, to realize times have changed?

But times change slowly, as always. When Paula Deen was a child, she was surrounded by a culture which found it quite natural and acceptable to have separate drinking fountains and schools for different races. That's the world she grew up in. Racist language was, assumably, considered within the bounds of polite conversation and was frequently heard by Deen.

I state this not as an attempt to excuse Deen, mind you. I point it out to highlight the bigger picture and the larger implications. Jim Crow and "separate but equal" is still a part of what historians call "living memory." There are still people alive who clearly remember when times were quite different. Their attitudes, in fact, may have formed during these times -- and subsequently hardened into mental cement before the times did change.

Casual racism has been almost eradicated from popular culture -- loosely defined as what it is acceptable to say on a primetime television show. You can quibble with that definition, but it will serve for now: what television networks will allow on the air without being terrified at a possible backlash towards them or their advertisers. Traveling back 40 years or so, a lot of what was allowable on All In The Family would never make it on the air today, to put this another way.

All In The Family had a point to make, though. Archie Bunker was portrayed as a man of his times, but also a man behind the times (that were a-changin'). The character was used to expose the ugliness of casual bigotry, and to educate the public why such things should no longer be seen as acceptable attitudes. Bunker was both sympathetic and abhorrent at the same time -- one reason for the show's popularity. A lot of Americans were struggling with such concepts at the same time the show aired. The message was that the ideas that Archie saw as perfectly acceptable were going the way of the dinosaurs. Some got this message. Some didn't. Some, even forty years later -- long after Archie Bunker's chair got a permanent home in the Smithsonian -- have still not learned the basic lesson.

Even today, measuring racism is not always a clear dichotomy. Not every attitude or word spoken is either clearly "racist" or "not-racist," to put this another way. There is a spectrum. Even the "N-word" is still hotly debated today, usually over whether rappers should be using the term (or "reclaiming the term" as some suggest) or not.

The good news is that the spectrum shifts over time. What was once considered acceptable becomes taboo. Attitudes shift, even if it takes generations. When the court case Loving v. Virginia forced the end of laws banning interracial marriages, the public was actually overwhelmingly against such marriages being allowed. Today, the public overwhelmingly approves of such marriages, and would be horrified if anyone suggested a law banning them again.

Not everyone's attitude shifts, of course. There are still a substantial number of people living in America today who are still against interracial marriage and who wish states still had the power to ban them. But this attitude is disappearing, slowly.

What people have to remember is that there are some people who are capable of changing their thinking and there are some who are not. What used to be acceptable to say or joke about in public is no longer treated with nervous laughter, but denounced. Some people who formerly held bigoted views truly evolve to tolerant thinking and see the error of their ways. Another group of people don't really change what they believe or think, but are at least aware enough of changing attitudes among the general public that they will confine saying their jokes and slurs only among those they're sure share such views -- in other words, they say things in private that they never would in public, because they know what the likely reaction would be. They learn to hide their attitudes, but the attitudes remain in place. And then there are those who don't ever learn that society has changed, and can still be counted on to make everyone cringe in polite company (the stereotypical drunken, ignorant family member at the reunion). People who are proud of their unreconstructed nature, in other words.

Now, I have no idea which category Paula Deen should be placed in, nor do I care much (I don't watch cooking shows, and have never met the woman personally, so it doesn't affect me in any tangible way precisely how bigoted she is or may be). I'm more interested in the present and the future than the past, truth be told.

Which is where the upcoming Supreme Court decisions become relevant. America has gotten to the point where even the opponents of gay marriage are all but conceding its inevitability. I make no predictions as to what the rulings later in the week will say on California's Proposition 8 or the federal Defense Of Marriage Act. But, whether it happens later this week or takes another ten years or more, when even the opposition is grudgingly conceding that gay marriage is going to become reality sooner or later, more than half the battle has really already been won.

The times, on gay marriage, are indeed changing. The spectrum of what is allowable in the conversation has already shifted dramatically. Take a look at the anti-gay-rights language being used back in the 1990s and what is being said today, to prove this point. The rhetoric of the Westboro Church "God Hates Fags" hatemongers wasn't all that far outside the mainstream of political discourse back in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but today the extremism of such proud bigots must make even anti-gay-rights politicians cringe. That is a tangible shift.

Of course, the shift is not complete -- Paula Deen shows how the shift on racism still isn't complete and may not be for another generation or so. Which is the real reason I felt compelled to write about the subject today. Sooner or later, gay marriage will become a reality across America. There really will be no looking back, at least legally, at that point. But culturally, even though the spectrum on gay bigotry has measurably shifted already, it still has a long way to go. Even if the Supreme Court gives gay rights advocates everything they want this week, this will still be true.

The road to full acceptance isn't going to magically end in an instant. We're not all going to be transported to the end of the road even when gay marriage becomes the law of the land. There will be those who continue fighting a losing battle against it for a long time to come. There will be those who will indeed evolve their thinking. There will be others who just quietly accept that the subject is no longer acceptable to speak of in certain ways (at least in public). But there will be those whose thinking will never change. They will cling to their prejudices until the day they die. Forty or fifty years from now, perhaps some spokeswoman for flying cars on some 3-D stereovision show will say something bigoted about gay marriage and get fired for it. Nobody should be surprised when this happens, because although cultural attitudes do indeed shift over time, sometimes it can take a lot longer than anyone expects before it disappears entirely from the scene.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

61 Comments on “The Long Road To Societal Change”

  1. [1] 
    Paula wrote:

    Good column Chris!

  2. [2] 
    Michale wrote:

    Just to add another layer of consideration to an already nearly perfect commentary....

    As I have pointed out, tolerance is a two-way street... Those who demand tolerance from others must, in turn, be tolerant themselves..

    I am not talking about being tolerant of those who would harm others based on race or lifestyle. NO ONE could (or SHOULD) be expected to tolerate those kinds of actions/people.

    I am talking about good and decent people who simply feel differently about certain issues. Shouldn't their feelings be tolerated??

    I'll give you a perfect example close to home. I made the comment that there isn't conclusive evidence to support the theory that people are born gay and there IS evidence to disprove that theory.

    A calm and logical statement, calmly and logically arrived at. And ya would have thought I confessed to being an ax murder by the uproar it caused..

    The long and the short of it is that I am completely with you, CW... We DO have a long way to go before such bigotry and racism is eliminated from society's conscious and unconscious.

    But I submit (again) that tolerance is a TWO way street. To only address the northbound lane will mean that the road trip that is the War Against Intolerance will be a never-ending road...

    Michale

  3. [3] 
    db wrote:

    Michale,

    The Mendelian math required to support a so called "gay gene" & 10% of the current population being gay has eluded me. I just can't make it work & no one can point out to me how it works. The only argument I've heard requires the "gay gene" not to be controlling & women carrying the variation having babies at a greater rate. That argument makes no sense to me whatever. So I'm dubious on the issue until someone can show me the math.

    You're playing word games with your main point though. Your arguments boils down to, "It's intolerant to be intolerant of intolerance."

    No.

    Right now, I'll give you either "intolerance" is not a bad thing, it's the object of "intolerance" that makes it good or evil; or it is not "intolerance" to oppose evil. But I'll defend either.

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    That argument makes no sense to me whatever. So I'm dubious on the issue until someone can show me the math.

    Yer way over my pay-grade there.. :D

    I am just a dumb knuckle-dragger. I don't know high mathematics from Keystone Light... :D

    All I know is that, as is with many political agendas disguised as "science", there is good and sound science on both sides of the issue.

    I am not advocating that one is right over the other..

    I am simply saying that the science that disproves the theory DOES exist..

    For a group to ignore it is to lay false to the claim that said group is "all about science"..

    You're playing word games with your main point though. Your arguments boils down to, "It's intolerant to be intolerant of intolerance."

    Actually, that's not what I am saying..

    I am saying that there are different forms of intolerance.. Levels if you will..

    Those that advocate absolute tolerance for themselves would demonize the guy/girl who, by religious upbringing, simply feel that homosexuality is wrong in the same manner that a person who beats up on gay people because they are gay would be demonized..

    I am sure that EVERYONE here would agree that those "levels of tolerance" are as different as night and day.

    Those in the gay activists' community would have us believe that those levels of tolerance are identical.

    Right now, I'll give you either "intolerance" is not a bad thing, it's the object of "intolerance" that makes it good or evil; or it is not "intolerance" to oppose evil. But I'll defend either.

    Justice Thomas said, "Diversity for diversity's sake is a non-starter"...

    I submit to you that "tolerance for tolerance's sake" is equally a non-starter...

    You are correct. Intolerance is not necessarily a bad thing... It's what we are intolerant about that is the determining factor..

    So, I'll go with your first statement of that paragraph and contend that we are in complete agreement..

    By the bi, $50 donated to Betty Griffin House in St Augustine, FL

    http://www.bettygriffinhouse.org/

    Michale

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am saying that there are different forms of intolerance.. Levels if you will..

    When I was a cop (and I imagine it's still true today) we had a "manual" of sorts entitled, PEACE OFFICERS LEVELS OF TOLERANCE..

    While it covered a broad range of topics, it was mostly used to cover traffic infractions..

    Towhit, Peace Officers allowed speeding up to a certain point. Generally speaking, all things being equal, you can get away with 10mph above the posted speed limit. That is not to be construed as saying that speeding is OK... It simply allowed Peace Officers certain latitude in not writing tickets..

    The gay activists should adopt similar Levels Of Tolerance guidelines..

    The gay activists' community shouldn't worry too much about Joe or Jane Christian having a problem with the communities' lifestyle.. In that, the activist community is trying to legislate acceptance, which will NEVER happen..

    The gay activists should be more concerned with those that are a real PHYSICAL threat to their lives and well-being..

    And don't think I don't acknowledge and appreciate the inconsistency... :D

    Michale

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    Kevin,

    A calm and logical statement, calmly and logically arrived at. And ya would have thought I confessed to being an ax murder by the uproar it caused..

    In fairness to you, I am certain that everyone else felt the same way... :D

    You were the only one that had the courage to articulate and I respect that...

    As an aside, thanx for turning me on to Vince Flynn.. I just finished his first book TERM LIMITS and it was frakin' awesome!!!

    What a pleasant fantasy that was to see politicians get what they deserve...

    Since the NSA is reading this, I better contextualize this properly..

    Of course I am not advocating such actions in real life...

    But certain actions DID bring a smile to my face and long for... ahem.. simpler times. :D

    Michale

  7. [7] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    But certain actions DID bring a smile to my face and long for... ahem.. simpler times. :D

    Not that I advocate for such things either, but the Hamilton-Burr method of solving political differences in Congress would cut through some of the gridlock...

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Not that I advocate for such things either, but the Hamilton-Burr method of solving political differences in Congress would cut through some of the gridlock...

    No doubt... :D

    Michale

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Divided Supreme Court strikes down key voting rights provision
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jun/25/court-past-voting-discrimination-no-longer-held/

    Oh wow...

    I bet the bovine feces is going to hit the rotating cooling device now!! :D

    Michale

  10. [10] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The gay activists' community shouldn't worry too much about Joe or Jane Christian having a problem with the communities' lifestyle.. In that, the activist community is trying to legislate acceptance, which will NEVER happen.

    I think the gay community has become a perfect model of changing culture first.

    You can see this in how the polls show support from the public ahead of support from politicians.

    BTW- The gay community isn't trying to legislate acceptance. From what I've seen, they just want legislation which supports equality under the law.

    The gay activists should adopt similar Levels Of Tolerance guidelines.

    I'd only add that everyone should adopt levels of tolerance guidelines :)

    So how should religious people tolerate homosexuals who they disagree with?

    1) Choose to disagree and worry instead about how they behave rather than what gay people are doing?

    2) Legislate their own beliefs (such as what marriage can be) on everyone to the exclusion of some.

    Should any religious viewpoints infringe on another's rights as a person?

    Or basically, I believe religions shouldn't be trying to legislate their religious beliefs.

    -David

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    BTW- The gay community isn't trying to legislate acceptance. From what I've seen, they just want legislation which supports equality under the law.

    I disagree.

    If what you say is true, then the gay activists would be happy with a UNION that is afforded all the same rights and responsibilities as a marriage..

    But that activists want to call it marriage which is, at it's most basic, a religious notion.

    Or basically, I believe religions shouldn't be trying to legislate their religious beliefs.

    If you think I am going to disagree with that, you don't know me too well.. :D

    Michale...

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Or basically, I believe religions shouldn't be trying to legislate their religious beliefs.

    But at least we agree that people who try to legislate acceptance, whether it be religious acceptance or lifestyle acceptance, are REALLY annoying..

    n'est-ce pas?? :D

    Michale

  13. [13] 
    akadjian wrote:

    If what you say is true, then the gay activists would be happy with a UNION that is afforded all the same rights and responsibilities as a marriage.

    A union sounds like "separate but equal". Which doesn't really sound equal.

    And people get married for many reasons other than religion. Heck, I'm married and I'm not religious. It sounds like you are too.

    Should you have to be religious to get married?

    If you want to abolish marriage completely and have everyone have "unions," I'd be for that. Or if you want to allow gay people to marry, I'd be for that.

    But I can understand why gay people want equality. Not "kind of" equality.

    But at least we agree that people who try to legislate acceptance, whether it be religious acceptance or lifestyle acceptance, are REALLY annoying.

    Sure. If gay people were trying to say only gay people can get married that would be really annoying.

    -David

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    A union sounds like "separate but equal". Which doesn't really sound equal.

    But that's my point..

    It WOULD be equal.. In every way.

    But your objection is exactly what I am talking about..

    It HAS to be called "marriage" or else nothing.

    Which is nothing but a poke in the eye to religious institutions..

    And people get married for many reasons other than religion. Heck, I'm married and I'm not religious. It sounds like you are too.

    In the here and now, you are correct. Hell, my "marriage" is more like a union than a marriage. We got married in a county courthouse with two secretaries as witnesses...

    But, for the vast majority, marriage is a religious institution.. It's just moronic lack of foresight that so many legal/governmental crap got tied up in a "marriage"...

    But I can understand why gay people want equality. Not "kind of" equality.

    "A difference which makes no difference IS no difference."
    -Commander Spock

    The fact that gay activists want MARRIAGE instead of UNIONS, even though BOTH are identical in the eyes of the government and the law, is because they want to be accepted..

    And if they can't get that acceptance by logic and rational discussion, then they will FORCE it by legislation...

    Sure. If gay people were trying to say only gay people can get married that would be really annoying.

    And if gay activists want to FORCE every American to accept their lifestyle, THAT would be annoying too...

    Michale

  15. [15] 
    db wrote:

    Michale,

    Not wishing to bore you but wanting to show you & anyone watching my problems with a "gay gene".

    We start off with the assumption that the "gay gene" controls your choice of sex partners. If it doesn't control you choose your partners for your own reasons.
    We add the assumption that a certain percentage of "gay gene" possessors will not have children. think that's a solid assumption.
    So assuming that 50% of the gay gene possessors do not violate their genetic code & have children each generation; the math goes something like.
    Currently 10% of population gay
    30 years ago 20% of population (half didn't leave children)
    60 years ago 40%
    90 years ago 80%
    120 years ago ? Or were there other reasons they were called "The Gay 90's"?
    All right only 10% of gene possessors fail to leave children (& at this point you're very close to preference by choice, what kind of gene is it that only "works" 10%)
    Currently 10%
    30 years 11%
    60 years 12.1%
    90 years 13.3%
    120 years 14.7%
    150 years 16.1%
    180 years 17.8%
    210 years 19.6%
    Which is not (yet) a huge number but "monkey-boys" have been around for some 50,000 years.

    So how can you make the math work?

    And I'll throe another spanner into the works. Ancient Greece ~500BC felt that only men has souls & women were incomplete men. Thus real (soul completing) love could only be between two men & the entire society practiced homosexual as well as other sex.

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    Put another way, it would be as if polyamoury groups would force the church to recognize THEIR unions as traditional marriages..

    How is that any different than what the gay activists are attempting to force??

    As an aside, we're going to hear the SCOTUS rulings in a couple hours.

    You gonna be around?? :D

    Michale

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    db,

    The math certainly bears out the conclusion that gay is nurture, not nature...

    As I said before. I don't have enough knowledge to know for a fact which side has the correct conclusion..

    But it is CLEAR that there IS science that supports either conclusion..

    For one side to make the claim that "the science is settled" and to base an entire litany of legislation on this supposed "settled" science is ludicrous in extremo...

    Michale

  18. [18] 
    akadjian wrote:

    BOTH are identical in the eyes of the government and the law

    If both are identical, then why call them two different things?

    The answer is that they're not identical. They have different meanings to society.

    But, for the vast majority, marriage is a religious institution.

    Then let's let a civil union be the only law of the land. Let's let people get married by their churches and have a union be the recognizable government paper.

    Wouldn't religions be open to this idea?

    Let's take marriage out of government completely if it's so religious.

    The fact that gay activists want MARRIAGE instead of UNIONS, even though BOTH are identical in the eyes of the government and the law, is because they want to be accepted.

    They want to be equal.

    Why single out gays for unions if religions are going to be offended? Why not make atheists get unions too? Or anyone else who "offends" any religion?

    Marriage is a recognized government institution. I don't believe we shouldn't be letting religions dictate who can and cannot get married.

    You gonna be around?? :D

    Heheh. Probably. But I'm not expecting any big victories from a conservative court. So you can prepare to gloat :)

    -David

  19. [19] 
    akadjian wrote:

    p.s. None of this interferes with your right to disagree with someone being gay.

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    If both are identical, then why call them two different things?

    Because one is a religious and one is not..

    The answer is that they're not identical. They have different meanings to society.

    Exactly.. And the marriage has a different meaning to our society because it is a religious institution...

    Then let's let a civil union be the only law of the land. Let's let people get married by their churches and have a union be the recognizable government paper.

    I am all for that...

    But that's not what the gay activists are pushing..

    To put it in immature playground terms, gay activists want to be accepted in the geek club, but the geek club is against them..

    So, the gay activists have two choices. They can whine and cry and complain to the teacher that "the geeks are being mean and won't let us into their club!!" or the gay activists can start their own club and make it better than the geek club..

    Guess which option the gay activists are choosing??

    Let's take marriage out of government completely if it's so religious.

    Again, I am all for that.. But because religion and this country is so intertwined, it's just not going to happen.. Because the vast majority of this country doesn't WANT it.

    So, the minority (you and I) will just have to suck it up and deal with the reality of the here and now..

    But a UNION is completely free of religious connotations or influence and is strictly a LEGAL designation for the purposes of attaining all the legal rights that a religious marriage entails.

    It's a no brainer...

    And if the gay activists were TRULY about retaining their RIGHTS and don't give a rip about acceptance, then they would JUMP at this chance...

    Taking religion out of marriage is just NOT going to happen, no matter how much we may want it..

    So, the best alternative is to create a legal definition OF a marriage w/o all the religious baggage...

    They want to be equal.

    No, they want to be accepted...

    If they just wanted equality, then a union would suffice..

    Marriage is a recognized government institution.

    That is a secondary recognition.. The primary recognition is thru religion..

    I don't believe we shouldn't be letting religions dictate who can and cannot get married.

    NO WAY around it. No way, no how...

    That's the reality...

    So, the ONLY alternative is to create an identical institution, a LEGAL institution, that doesn't have ANY religious connections whatsoever..

    And such an institution would suffice if the goal was truly equality..

    Heheh. Probably. But I'm not expecting any big victories from a conservative court. So you can prepare to gloat :)

    I'll try to keep it to a minimum.. Despite all my faults, I DO try to be a gracious winner..

    But I submit that the decision is not pre-ordained...

    Remember the ObamaCare ruling.. :D

    None of this interferes with your right to disagree with someone being gay.

    Personally, I have no problem with gay whatsoever..

    My only beef comes when gay people use it as a shield or as a way to secure benefits not due them...

    If a person is an asshole, it doesn't matter if they are gay, straight, black, white, Vulcan or Ferengi.

    They are still an asshole... :D

    In the interests of full disclosure, I DO have to admit..

    I REALLY hate Ferengis....

    Michale

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    If anyone is interested, you can see the live blog on the SCOTUS rulings..

    http://www.scotusblog.com/

    Between this and the Sanford trial, I ain't getting much work done this morning.. :^/

    Michale

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    And the wait is over....

    First opinion is DOMA...

    DOMA is ruled unconstitutional...

    DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.

    5-4 Ruling w/ Kennedy being the deciding...

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Interesting note...

    The final part of the ruling states

    The opinion and its holding are confined to those lawful marriages.

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:
  25. [25] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Thanks for the scotusblog link, Michale ... nice!!!

    My only beef comes when gay people use it as a shield or as a way to secure benefits not due them.

    I don't see this happening w/ the gay rights movement. They just want to be treated equally.

    If a person is an asshole, it doesn't matter if they are gay, straight, black, white, Vulcan or Ferengi.

    True. But requires evidence of "assholery".

    I don't see any evidence of "assholery" in fighting for equality.

    Riddle me this ...

    You ask for tolerance from gays for religious people. Yet I don't see gay people trying to say "you can't worship whoever you want". I don't even see them saying "you have to accept us".

    All they're saying is ... we want to be married. Just like you.

    And this doesn't infringe on anyone else's right to be married.

    Now on the flip side, there are many religions who preach intolerance for gay people and want to legislate marriage as something reserved only for them.

    How about this for evidence of assholery?

    http://www.godhatesfags.com/

    NO WAY around it. No way, no how...

    Yes. There is a way around it. It's actually quite simple. You keep religion out of government and from writing laws that grant special rights to religions.

    -David

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Looks like the SCOTUS punted on Prop 8...

    Petitioners do not have standing...

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    Amy Howe:
    The decision of the Ninth Circuit is vacated and remanded.

  28. [28] 
    akadjian wrote:

    DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.

    Good for the SCOTUS! I was a little surprised Roberts didn't join the majority on this one. Will be interesting to see his dissent.

  29. [29] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Ancient Greece ~500BC felt that only men has souls & women were incomplete men. Thus real (soul completing) love could only be between two men & the entire society practiced homosexual as well as other sex.

    Heheheheh. Now that is funny, db!

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    I don't see this happening w/ the gay rights movement.

    I was referring more to individual gay people I know personally..

    They just want to be treated equally.

    As has been established, there is evidence to suggest that equality is not the goal..

    Acceptance is..

    True. But requires evidence of "assholery".

    Such as "My only beef comes when gay people use it as a shield or as a way to secure benefits not due them."?? :D

    I don't even see them saying "you have to accept us".

    *I* do... The fact that they are trying to insinuate themselves into a religious institution is an example of gay activists saying "you have to accept us"...

    All they're saying is ... we want to be married. Just like you.

    Why??

    Why not be happy with, "We want to be joined in a union" rather than "we want to be joined in a marriage"..

    If a union has ALL the legal benefits and protections of a marriage, why does the label matter??

    Because it reflects acceptance by the religious institution that is marriage...

    Yes. There is a way around it. It's actually quite simple. You keep religion out of government.

    Which is EXACTLY what a union is!!! It is a marriage with all the legal benefits and protections due a religious marriage WITHOUT any of the religious aspects...

    You are right.. It IS simple..

    And, if equality was the goal, then creating a Union designation would be a clear victory for the gay community..

    However, if ACCEPTANCE is the goal, then the only "victory" would be that the gay community would force the religious institutions to acknowledge their rights within the boundaries of the religious institution...

    How about this for evidence of assholery?

    http://www.godhatesfags.com/

    That's perfect evidence..

    Now, would you agree that if I looked I could find equally abhorrent evidence of "assholery" from the gay activists side of things??

    Michale

  31. [31] 
    akadjian wrote:

    No one I know in the gay community cares at all about acceptance by any religion.

    Believe what you want to believe ... just don't legislate your religion on anyone else.

    Guess we're just going to have to disagree on this one, Michale!

    -David

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    No one I know in the gay community cares at all about acceptance by any religion.

    If that were the case, then the gay activists would be satisfied with a union that has all benefits and rights of a religious marriage...

    Believe what you want to believe ... just don't legislate your religion on anyone else.

    I have no religion, so that likely won't ever become a problem.. :D

    Guess we're just going to have to disagree on this one, Michale!

    What a shock!! :D

    As long as we can do that with a smile, I don't see a problem.. :D

    Michale

  33. [33] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Now, would you agree that if I looked I could find equally abhorrent evidence of "assholery" from the gay activists side of things?

    You very well might and it would be unfortunate.

    What you won't find is any evidence of gay people trying to legislate their beliefs on others.

  34. [34] 
    akadjian wrote:

    As long as we can do that with a smile, I don't see a problem.. :D

    Me neither! :)

    I should have put in the smile

    -David

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    I have no religion, so that likely won't ever become a problem.. :D

    To clarify, my only "religion" is logic..

    And, while I would never force that on anyone else, it sure would be nice if people would, on their own, see the wisdom of adopting it..

    "Logic is the BEGINNING of wisdom, Valeris. Not the end..."
    -Captain Spock, STAR TREK VI, The Undiscovered Country

    Michale

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    What you won't find is any evidence of gay people trying to legislate their beliefs on others.

    Other than the fact that the gay activists refuse equality in favor of a religious label..

    Note that you say "gay community" and I say "gay activists"..

    I have not doubt that many in the community (I would even go so far as to say majority in the community) would happily settle for a Union that had all the rights and benefits of a religious marriage..

    But it's the activists that want the are the InYourFace types who aren't interested in equality but rather want to stick it to religious groups...

    So, in a manner of speaking, you ARE right insofar that the gay community wants equality...

    But *I* am also right insofar as the gay activists want acceptance..

    So, the BEST way for this to end is for the majority of the gay community who ARE only interested in equality to reign in their more violent and militant aspects, who are only interested in sticking it to religion....

    Only then can TRUE tolerance be achieved...

    "Power Perceived Is Power Achieved"

    Michale

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Interesting dissent from Scalia....

    But to defend traditional marriage is not to condemn, demean, or humiliate those who would prefer other arrangements, any more than to defend the Constitution of the United States is to con- demn, demean, or humiliate other constitutions. To hurl such accusations so casually demeans this institution. In the majority's judgment, any resistance to its holding is beyond the pale of reasoned disagreement. To question its high-handed invalidation of a presumptively valid statute is to act (the majority is sure) with the purpose to "dis- parage," "injure," "degrade," "demean," and "humiliate" our fellow human beings, our fellow citizens, who are homo- sexual. All that, simply for supporting an Act that did no more than codify an aspect of marriage that had been unquestioned in our society for most of its existence— indeed, had been unquestioned in virtually all societies for virtually all of human history. It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race.

    Scalia says that the court's holding – while limited to the Defense of Marriage Act – is a sure sign that the majority is willing to declare gay marriage a constitutional right.

    It takes real cheek for today's majority to assure us, as it is going out the door, that a constitutional requirement to give formal recognition to same-sex marriage is not at issue here—when what has preceded that assurance is a lecture on how superior the majority's moral judgment in favor of same-sex marriage is to the Congress's hateful moral judgment against it. I promise you this: The only thing that will "confine" the Court's holding is its sense of what it can get away with.

    In the majority's telling, this story is black-and-white: Hate your neighbor or come along with us. The truth is more complicated. It is hard to admit that one's political opponents are not monsters, especially in a struggle like this one, and the challenge in the end proves more than today's Court can handle. Too bad. A reminder that disagreement over something so fundamental as marriage can still be politically legitimate would have been a fit task for what in earlier times was called the judicial temperament. We might have covered ourselves with honor today, by promising all sides of this debate that it was theirs to settle and that we would respect their resolution. We might have let the People decide.

    But that the majority will not do. Some will rejoice in today's decision, and some will despair at it; that is the nature of a controversy that matters so much to so many. But the Court has cheated both sides, robbing the winners of an honest victory, and the losers of the peace that comes from a fair defeat. We owed both of them better. I dissent.

    I can't help but see our own conflicts reflected in those words...

    People who oppose gay marriage and the gay lifestyle are not ogres or monsters or bigots...

    They are simply people who have a different set of values..

    It's where the concept of tolerance comes in...

    It used to be:

    "I disagree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.."

    These days, the saying is:

    "I disagree with what you say and I will beat you to death if you don't stop saying it"

    Crazy world we live in....

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The only problem with Scalia's playing of the victim card is that religion and/or marriage and/or anyone religious aren't under attack.

    So it's hard to figure out what's going on in Scalia's mind ...

    No rights are being denied to any religion or person by anyone.

    People of all religions can still marry as they have for centuries.

    And no one's saying they have to like gay people.

    What a victim ... Antonin Scalia folks ... people should respect him for wanting to deny rights to others! Marriage is under attack!!! Gay people are scary and violent and out to deny your way of life!!!!!! We ... nice wholesome religious people ... are the victims here!!!!!!!!!

    What a load of malarkey ...

    He also called the decision, with no sense of irony, "legalistic argle-bargle"

    Methinks his head 'bout to 'splode :)

    -David

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    The only problem with Scalia's playing of the victim card is that religion and/or marriage and/or anyone religious aren't under attack.

    Really??

    The religious view of marriage is certainly under attack..

    Even an enthusiastic atheist/agnostic as myself can see that..

    No matter how you try to spin it, marriage is a religious institution...

    Of that, there is no doubt...

    Gay people are scary and violent and out to deny your way of life!!!!!!

    It's funny..

    It's funny because that is exactly how ya'all view/categorize those who do oppose gay marriage and the gay lifestyle...

    Thereby proving the wisdom of Scalia's words...

    Michale....

  40. [40] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I never knew you were so politically correct, Michale.

    Using your argument ... let's look at another example ...

    Many Muslims believe that women should wear veils.

    So according to your tolerance theory we should create Defend the Veil legislation that won't let those dangerous and violent women get away with any type of lifestyle decision to the contrary.

    Women just need to be more tolerant and wear the veils since those religious people are never going to change their beliefs and will be offended.

    Really ... this Scalia argument is the height of absurdity. Especially from conservatives who have raged against what they see as this type of "political correctness" for years.

    Must we appease every religion?

    -David

  41. [41] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Or another way to put it ...

    Is it ok to deny rights to certain people in order to not offend some religion?

    And ... how do you know which religions to choose?

    -David

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    Must we appease every religion?

    Do you REALLY want to enter into the discussion about appeasing religion vis a vis Muslims??? :D

    I honestly don't think you want to go there..

    But, the good news is, we don't have to..

    Because I can negate that argument w/o delving into the hypocrisy of the Left and appeasing Muslims..

    Muslim, Islam and wearing veils have not been the backbone and the foundation of this country from over 200 years...

    However, adjusting your analogy to account for the temporal variation...

    If this country had been built on Islam and the wearing of the veils was a religious tradition for over 200 years, then yes...

    Trying to get women to stop wearing veils would be an attack on that religion..

    Hell, I don't even have to utilize temporal incursions to prove my point..

    All I have to do is point to Islamic countries in the here and now...

    Is it ok to deny rights to certain people in order to not offend some religion?

    Apparently, ya'all think it's just fine and dandy to do so...

    You DO recall the FL crazy that wanted to burn Korans, right??

    Ya'all wanted to deny him HIS rights because it offended a religion..

    The film-maker who made the anti-Islam video was thrown in jail..

    Did anyone here shed a tear or rise up to his defense???

    And ... how do you know which religions to choose?

    Apparently, the Left's criteria is any religion that is anti-American is the religion to protect..

    Any religion that is pro-American is the religion to attack...

    :D

    Michale

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    We can argue muslims and appeasement and temporal incursions all day long..

    But the short version is this.

    Marriage, at it's base, is a religious institution..

    We have several alternatives to religious marriage that are legally marriages w/o the religious trappings..

    Common Law for one... It has been successfully argued by the law that Common Law marriages are just as binding and enjoy all the legal rights and benefits as a traditional marriage...

    Now, do religions recognize common law marriages??

    Don't know. Don't care as it is not relevant..

    The only relevant fact is that common law marriages are a non-religious alternative to a traditional religious marriage that enjoys all the rights and benefits of a marriage...

    Given that there is ample precedence for alternative to marriage that is legally a marriage, then why would it be so difficult to accept another alternative definition that ALSO shares the same legal protections and rights as a traditional marriage??

    The answer is it WOULDN'T be difficult to accept if the goal was equality and not acceptance...

    Ergo, logically speaking, the goal for the gay activists is NOT equality but rather is acceptance...

    "Simple Logic"
    -Admiral James T Kirk, STAR TREK VII, GENERATIONS

    Michale...

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    You have to admit, David..

    The way you characterize how the religious right feels about gay people is exactly the way that the Left feels about people who have a problem with the gay lifestyle..

    In that, Scalia is dead on ballz accurate in his dissent...

    But, let's lay it out on the table..

    Can a person who has a problem/issue with the gay lifestyle NOT be a monster or a bigot, but rather simply has a different value system??

    Michale.....

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's also keep in mind that it was the Democrat's Democrat who signed DOMA into law...

    So, if you are going to demonize people for their beliefs, it's ONLY logical that you start with Clinton...

    Pesky historical facts are always an inconvenient nuisance, eh? :D

    I'm just sayin'... :D

    Michale

  46. [46] 
    akadjian wrote:

    No one is demonizing anyone, Michale.

    I'm merely arguing for equality.

    And I don't see any reason why the government should allow religious people to marry and not gay people.

    -David

  47. [47] 
    Michale wrote:

    No one is demonizing anyone, Michale.

    Here?? Of course not..

    We're all civilized here. :D

    But the Left routinely demonizes anyone who speaks out against the gay lifestyle...

    I'm merely arguing for equality.

    Yes, YOU are...

    But we're not discussing your beliefs or actions.. We're discussing the beliefs and actions of gay activists..

    And I don't see any reason why the government should allow religious people to marry and not gay people.

    The point of fact isn't religious vs non-religious..

    The point of fact is a man and a woman...

    I don't agree it, but I also don't have a problem with those who DO have a problem with gay people marrying..

    I think their problem is ridiculous and out-dated, but I surely acknowledge their right to HAVE that problem...

    That makes me unique amongst Weigantians.. :D

    Michale....

  48. [48] 
    akadjian wrote:

    We're discussing the beliefs and actions of gay activists.

    You're gonna have to be more specific. All the gay activists I know or have ever seen all care about equality.

    They could give a rat's ass if some religion accepts them or not.

    I surely acknowledge their right to HAVE that problem.

    Sure, they have the right. It's perfectly fine if they believe something because of their religion. I'm happy to let people worship imaginary sea monsters if it's their religion.

    When they try to turn their beliefs into laws that restrict other peoples' rights, however, is where I'd draw the line.

    -David

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    You're gonna have to be more specific. All the gay activists I know or have ever seen all care about equality.

    You keep saying that.

    Yet the evidence clearly shows different...

    You say that Unions that have all the rights and benefits of a traditional religious marriage are NOT equal to a traditional religious marriage..

    What about the two makes them unequal??

    The label???

    They could give a rat's ass if some religion accepts them or not.

    Then why do they want the blessings of a traditional religious marriage??

    Why not be happy with the EXACT same thing, except having a different name and not having all of the religious baggage??

    When they try to turn their beliefs into laws that restrict other peoples' rights, however, is where I'd draw the line.

    But that is JUST what the gay activists are doing.. Trying to restrict the rights of the religious and forcing the beliefs of the gay community into the realm of religion, which doesn't want those beliefs..

    Michale

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    We're probably (AGAIN ;D ) at the point where we should agree to disagree...

    You seem to think that there is nothing religious and I know that first and foremost, marriage is a religious institution..

    Any gay person who refuses to accept a union that has all the rights and benefits of a traditional marriage and opts for fighting to call their union a marriage cares absolutely NOTHING about equality and everything about acceptance...

    Said gay person is more concerned about having the general public say, "It's OK.. It's perfectly normal and natural.."

    And that simply is NOT going to happen...

    I don't agree with that... But it IS the way things are...

    Gay activists don't want to be equal... They want to be right... :D

    But hay...

    I am open to convincing...

    Get one (or more) of your gay activist buddies on here and have them argue the logic of their position..

    If they can make a compelling and logical argument that addresses my points, I'll gladly concede I am wrong.. :D

    Michale

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    You seem to think that there is nothing religious and I know that first and foremost, marriage is a religious institution..

    Sorry.. Sometimes my mind gets ahead of my fingers..

    That should read:

    You seem to think that there is nothing religious in marriage and I know that, first and foremost, marriage is a religious institution..

    Michale

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    If they can make a compelling and logical argument that addresses my points, I'll gladly concede I am wrong.. :D

    But if they come back with a "Well, he's right! We WOULD be happy with a legal union that has all the rights and benefits of traditional marriage" ya gotta be honest and tell me!! :D

    Michale

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    I realize I have already overstayed my welcome here on this issue (what a shock, eh!! :D) but it's been pointed out that the "long road" might not be that long, historically speaking...

    In Landmark Ruling, Supreme Court Strikes Down Defense Of Marriage Act

    The ruling caps one of the fastest civil rights shifts in the nation’s history.

    http://swampland.time.com/2013/06/26/in-landmark-ruling-supreme-court-strikes-down-defense-of-marriage-act/#ixzz2XMb0MfL3

    Michale

  54. [54] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Paula [1] -

    OK, I'm just going to assume that you're not THAT Paula...

    :-)

    Thanks for the kind words!

    Michale [2] -

    Um, OK, while I am impressed with the general tone of your comment, I have to say there is a lot of proof that being gay is inherent. The fact there are gay animals, for instance.

    But here's the real proof. OK, your thesis is: being gay is a choice. Fair enough. So the choice is always there for us all. SO... if this is true, than you could spend next week being gay. Not trying to insult you (Seinfeld: "Not that there's anything wrong with that..."), just saying that if it is a choice for all, then it is also a choice for you.

    So... honestly, from the deepest part of your being (and assuming you weren't in a committed marriage, of course, but rather single and footloose)... could you live a week as a gay male? Seriously, could you go down to a gay bar and decide to be attracted to men? Could you try to talk one into bed with you?

    I'm betting that if you answer that question honestly, the answer is "no, no matter how hard I tried to pretend, I could not, in fact, do that."

    So why do you think it is any different for gay people?

    Why do you think THEY could choose to be attracted to the opposite sex, if it all is -- as your thesis propounds -- merely a "choice"?

    Put the shoe on the other foot -- and find out that while Cinderella was a size 6 women's, your foot is a giant size 12-and-a-half men's. That glass slipper just ain't gonna fit, pal.

    Prove me wrong, I dare you.

    OK, I'm going to move on to all the other comments, but I am going to post this one separately, just because I think it deserves it...

    -CW

  55. [55] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    db [3] -

    OK, you're going to have to be more specific on the math and genetics, but it's not one of those Bio 101 Mendelian genetics problems, I think. Being gay is counter-survival in the biological and genetic sense. Up until artificial fertility help was introduced, being gay means you will not pass on your genes, because you will not sexually reproduce. Am I missing something? It seems like a single-generational dead-end, in the larger genetic pool sense. But... but... being gay has always been with us as a species. It seems outside of the whole dominant/recessive paradigm, in fact. Perhaps it is Mother Nature's way of limiting population growth? That's sheer speculation, based on absolutely nothing, I should add. But Nature has a way of doing the oddest things at times, until you look at them in the bigger picture. I simply don't know, but find the whole debate fascinating, personally.

    Michale [4] -

    I am just a dumb knuckle-dragger. I don't know high mathematics from Keystone Light... :D

    OK, I do know some higher mathematics, but I don't need them to teach me that Keystone Light is just flat-out disgusting. I mean, seriously, dude...

    But I do actually (kind of) agree with you on intolerance. I fought back -- in the 1980s, on an ultra-liberal college campus, I'll have you know -- against the term "homophobia." OK, sure, there are people for whom their opposition to gays is a fear of their own gayness. Granted. But that doesn't mean that EVERY person against gay rights falls into this category. Scalia (or maybe Alito, I'd have to check) actually referenced this today in his dissent.

    The Left finds it impossible to believe (some of them, at any rate) that there are people who can simultaneously love individual gay people and treat them with respect and dignity, and STILL disagree about the morality of gayness, for religious or other reasons.

    I respect this viewpoint, and consider such people ripe for education and convincing them of a different viewpoint. But I will not label them "gay-haters" or "gay-fearers" (the definition of "homophobia"), because that is just demonization working in another direction. I lived through the "PC" era, and I was disgusted with many arguments made by liberals during it.

    So, I'll meet you halfway on this one.

    Michale [5] -

    That's an interesting sliding scale analogy. I would say, though, that you need to include LEGAL threats to their well-being, as well. I have no problem with the Westboro Baptist Church believing what they believe, and exercising their First Amendment rights to spread this belief. I think they're wrong, but they have every right to speak their minds. But I don't think they should be writing the laws for the rest of us. That's where my tolerance ends, personally.

    nypoet22 [7] -

    Oh, man, do you know how much the cable networks would bid for the exclusive chance to cover duels between politicians?

    Heh. It would solve the national debt, if it was paid into the Treasury, that's for sure... heh heh.

    Michale [11] -

    "Separate but equal" used to be seen as constitutional, too. Until it wasn't. You are arguing for basically the same treatment. "Separate" (schools/civil unions) but "equal" (to white schools/marriages) is totally fine with the Constitution...

    Michale [12] -

    But I thought that's what the Right wanted -- legislation of such. Because otherwise, those nasty non-elected judges are going to decide the same thing, right?

    Heh.

    Michale [14] -

    You prove my point:

    But that's my point..

    It WOULD be equal.. In every way.

    But your objection is exactly what I am talking about..

    It HAS to be called "marriage" or else nothing.

    In every way... except it would be "separate" under the law. Second class, in other words.

    db [15] -

    Oooo! Math! I love it!

    But you have failed (and I hestitate to bring this up, because of the social stigma surrounding the word itself) the mutation factor. What if "gay genes" do exist, but are a result of cosmic radiation, which results in an increase in the children of each generation who have it? I also think your 50% figure is wildly off, but that's just a gut feeling...

    akadjian [18] -

    Um... "what he said!"

    :-)

    OK, I'm going to shut this down for the night. I'll return tomorrow and take care of the rest of these comments, I promise, but I've got to get some sleep now, sorry.

    -CW

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW!!!

    Welcome back.. :D

    Um, OK, while I am impressed with the general tone of your comment,

    Thanx.. :D I do try... :D

    I have to say there is a lot of proof that being gay is inherent.

    Agreed. Just as there is a lot of proof that being gay is the result of trauma..

    That's my point. Like with many other faux-science political agendas, there is good and real science to support both cases...

    Which one is right? I have no idea..

    But it is undeniable that there is science to support that gay people aren't born, they are made..

    The fact there are gay animals, for instance.

    Animals throw their own poop... :D

    But here's the real proof. OK, your thesis is: being gay is a choice.

    No. My thesis is that the possibility exists that being gay is a choice. That the science is not settled by ANY stretch of the definition...

    if this is true, than you could spend next week being gay.

    If I so choose (chosed??) to, I could. I would view it as an undercover assignment.. :D

    er... no pun intended... :D

    Seriously, could you go down to a gay bar and decide to be attracted to men?

    I believe I could.. It would all be an act, but if there was a good and valid reason to do so..

    Wasn't there an Al Pacino movie about that?? Cop going undercover in the gay community to flush out a serial killer??

    Regardless, even if I couldn't, that wouldn't prove that one is born gay. It would simply show (if one looked at it from the other side of the issue) that I wasn't subjected to the emotional trauma that would make me want to be with men...

    Again, I am not arguing FOR any certain point. I have my own personal beliefs based on my own personal experiences but that is not what I am referring to..

    All I am saying is that there is compelling scientific evidence that supports both cases..

    OK, I do know some higher mathematics, but I don't need them to teach me that Keystone Light is just flat-out disgusting. I mean, seriously, dude...

    hehehehehehe I got hooked on the cheap stuff when I couldn't afford the good stuff like Bud Light.. When I was rolling in the money I STILL bought Keystone Light... When my local quickie mart had a dispute with their supplier and stopped carrying Keystone, I had to switch to Natural Light which has an even WORSE rep.. :D

    But that doesn't mean that EVERY person against gay rights falls into this category. Scalia (or maybe Alito, I'd have to check) actually referenced this today in his dissent.

    That's exactly my point! Gay activists would have us believe that a good Christian person who simply states publicly that they have real moral issues with gay people is on the same plane that one who goes out and beats up gay people for fun..

    And that's just ridiculous..

    Back when this was being bandied about before, I posted an ESPN story where the newscaster had said publicly that he has moral issues with the gay lifestyle. He went on to say that he works with a gay person and that person knows about the issues, yet it doesn't impact their working relationship and they are still friends...

    THAT is how it should be..

    But gay activists would have us believe that ANYONE who is not WITH gay people is against them..

    An attitude I believe the Left resoundingly ridiculed when Bush stated it..

    The Left finds it impossible to believe (some of them, at any rate) that there are people who can simultaneously love individual gay people and treat them with respect and dignity, and STILL disagree about the morality of gayness, for religious or other reasons.

    I couldn't have said it better my self! Kudos..

    So, I'll meet you halfway on this one.

    You are a good man, Gunga Din... :D

    "Separate but equal" used to be seen as constitutional, too. Until it wasn't. You are arguing for basically the same treatment.

    That's because the "separate" was not truly "equal"... In this case, it would have to be...

    Or else... :D

    In every way... except it would be "separate" under the law. Second class, in other words.

    If it was to be "second class" it would only be that in the eyes of the public. And there ain't nothing that can be done about that until one changes the public...

    I submit that even if gays had full blown church/religious marriage, it would STILL be second class in the eyes of the public...

    The eyes of the law are the only eyes that matter in this case....

    At least, that is what David is saying that the gay community is saying..

    So, if the eyes of the law are the only eyes that matter and a union is identical in the eyes of the law, then the gay activists SHOULD be happy with a legal union...

    IF.....

    If equality was the endgame...

    But, by all the available evidence, equality is NOT the endgame..

    Acceptance is...

    Let me be clear. I have absolutely NO PROBLEM whatsoever with the gay community striving for acceptance... It's a natural human condition that we want to be approved of and accepted..

    So, I don't have problem one with that..

    What I DO have a problem with is the deceit....

    If gay activists are fighting for acceptance, then come right out and say it, for chreest's sake! Don't hide behind this faux-noble ideal that "All we want is equality"..

    They can HAVE equality. It's a MUCH easier fight to wage and a MUCH easier goal to achieve...

    The Right and the Church wouldn't have dick for an argument if the gay activists would settle for a union that had all the rights and benefits of a religious marriage..

    And I would wager that 90% of Americans (MYSELF included) would fight right alongside the gay community if the Right and the Church tried to deny the gay community a union...

    So, if equality is the goal, then the path forward is clear...

    I look forward to your further responses.. :D

    Things are so much more fun around here when ya jump in.. :D

    Michale

  57. [57] 
    db wrote:

    CW,

    Agree entirely.

    A gene outside the paradigm, Mendel doesn't work? Well that's going to knock out a lot of Darwinian evolution.

    I agree that mutations randomly occur constantly, cosmic radiation, general DNA transmission errors, secret government experiments, doesn't matter. They do occur. BUT the SAME mutation, consistently appearing over the ~2000 years of cites that I can remember off the top of my head?

    I picked the 50% figure as an example. We can plug any figure in that you want. But if the "gay gene" argument is correct & possessing the gene precluded sex with the opposite gender; then you've got the gene being a genetic "dead end" to some extent.

    "which results in an increase in the children of each generation who have it" Hunh? Being Gay means you want sex with guys but when you (reluctantly) take a woman; she's more likely to get preggers? Don't understand at all.

    The good news is that among persons sympathetic with those seeking answers; we can discuss this.

    For myself, I submit that all people are hardwired for sex. The genes do not discriminate. It's a matter of societal norms which sex is defined as "wholesome & natural" & which "perverted & disgusting". Ancient Greece? Sure. Only men have souls; go for it. The ascetic cults of the 2nd Century? All sex bad? Sure. Those cults dies out rather quickly. Edward II likes boys? Bad, violates 14th Century cultural norms. Today? The cultural norms are (have) shifted.

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    DB,

    I am summing up your argument in words of one syllable that I can understand.. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    But what you seem to be saying is that, if people are born gay then that would mean, eventually, the end of the human race..

    That, in turn, would support the theory that the species known as human was designed to extinct itself...

    Whether one subscribes to the theory of evolution or the theory of intelligent design, it seems to me that having a species designed, either by evolution or by god(s), with a self-destruct mechanism is inherently self-defeating...

    Or maybe the god(s) or evolution decided that it would be safer to build the human race with an expiration date or a set shelf life... :D

    Either way, if one subscribes to the theory that people are born gay, then one must also accept that it means the end of the human race...

    Eventually..

    "When we were growing up, I had a quicksand box. I was an only child.... Eventually.."
    -Michael Wright

    :D

    Michale

  59. [59] 
    Michale wrote:

    One more note on this, David..

    Postulate a scenario where everyday American couples in the here and now are offered a choice.

    They could have a religious church wedding that would cost them tens of thousands of dollars and they would get a shiny certificate (suitable for framing) announcing their marriage.. They would have all the rights and benefits that come with a traditional marriage..

    OR

    They could go down to the county courthouse and for $29.95 (multi couple discounts available, fee increase on weekends and holidays) they can have a union. They would get a shiny certificate (suitable for framing) that would announce their union. Said union would have all the rights and benefits that are part and parcel to a traditional religious marriage...

    Now, don't you think that a good portion of those couples would JUMP at the chance to save tens of thousands of dollars??

    Do you think ANY of those couples would agonize over the fact that their union is not a religious marriage???

    Speaking for myself personally. I have been married over 30 years.. And I know I speak for my wife when I say that we really wouldn't give a rat's patootey if we called our union a marriage or a union...

    It simply does not matter...

    Just as it shouldn't matter to gay people... IF their goal is equality, it shouldn't matter one damn bit..

    Now, com'on.. You simply HAVE to acknowledge the logic...

    Michale

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    This is an article about Paula Deen, racism, and the upcoming gay marriage decisions from the Supreme Court. But mostly it's an article about the long, slow road to true changes in American society. The beginning of this road always starts with the prevailing casual acceptance of bigotry and prejudice in everyday life, and the road doesn't end until society as a whole reaches the point of near-universal condemnation of a way of thinking which used to be widespread and unremarkable.

    Speaking of Paula Deen..

    What do you think it says about America that Paula Deen's cookbooks are the number 1 and number 2 best seller on Amazon?? The number one book (Paula Deen's New Testament) charted in the 1500s less then a week ago...

    What do you think that means??

    I can tell you what I think it means, but I want to hear your thoughts first...

    Michale

  61. [61] 
    db wrote:

    Michale,

    I've been away all weekend so I'm late to this.

    If one is "born gay"
    And being so precludes sex with the opposite sex
    Then those possessing the gene will sire (if that's the right word, trying to be gender neutral) fewer children than those not possessing the gene.
    And the gene, not humanity, would die out.

    But

    If one is "born gay"
    And being so does not preclude sex with the opposite sex
    Then the issue is one of choice. i.e. the gene does not control your actions.
    And "gay people" will not die out; at least not quickly. But since the choice of a sex partner is a matter of choice; there's really no such thing as a "gay person" merely a person who chooses gay activities at this time.

    Activities is 4 syllables but I think that's the biggest word.

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