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Old 2008-05-15, 20:36   #177
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http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la...,6182317.story
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Old 2008-05-18, 02:00   #178
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The basic principle I see is whether government is responsible for legislating morality. I personally am a very committed heterosexual who sees absolutely nothing appealing about any kind of homosexual relationship. I do not however see any reason for the government being in a position of determining what is or is not legal based on a strictly societal/moral principle.

Marriage in strict definition is a union between a male and female. It predates all current cultures. The underlying question being asked in this thread is not whether or not marriage between homosexuals is acceptable, but rather whether the government defined benefits of marriage should be extended to homosexuals.

DarJones
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Old 2008-05-18, 23:57   #179
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
The basic principle I see is whether government is responsible for legislating morality. I personally am a very committed heterosexual who sees absolutely nothing appealing about any kind of homosexual relationship. I do not however see any reason for the government being in a position of determining what is or is not legal based on a strictly societal/moral principle.

Marriage in strict definition is a union between a male and female. It predates all current cultures. The underlying question being asked in this thread is not whether or not marriage between homosexuals is acceptable, but rather whether the government defined benefits of marriage should be extended to homosexuals.

DarJones
I find your posting difficult to understand. To what "societal/moral principle" are you referring? The principle of the right to marry the person you love if that other person feels the same way and wants to marry you too? If this right is not in place for everyone, then I have to ask who you think is to put it into place if not the currently sitting government?

You say that "in strict definition" marriage is a union between male and female. Well, that depends where you are and, sometimes, how you interpret the definition. The supreme court in California has just determined by majority vote that your "strict definition" does not apply to that state's laws in any case. Add the state of Massachusetts and the countries Canada, Belgium, South Africa, The Netherlands and Spain, plus some other areas of the world whose courts have yet to address the issue of whether their own definition includes same sex marriages.

You want to define the question in terms of whether marriage benefits should be extended "to homosexuals" (I assume you mean to same sex partners in committed relationships). OK, but it would be nice to hear what your own answer is to this question. (Mine is "yes, whyever not?")
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Old 2008-05-19, 12:17   #180
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post

Marriage in strict definition is a union between a male and female. It predates all current cultures. The underlying question being asked in this thread is not whether or not marriage between homosexuals is acceptable, but rather whether the government defined benefits of marriage should be extended to homosexuals.

DarJones
That is *your* definition. My definition is that marriage is a union
between two people who love each other and want to formalize
their commitment to one another.

Marriage is more than just a civil union because it conveys a message
to the rest of society that two people have committed to one another.
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Old 2008-05-20, 17:53   #181
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
That is *your* definition. My definition is....
Oh, we have your truth and my truth, do we?

I think that what Fusie was saying is that the "long standing, classical, historic,broad based, cross cultural, equemenical, dictionary" definition of mariage is 'xyz'. You hold to a "modernist, revisionalist" re-definition of marriage as 'abc'.

Do you think that based upon love being the needed criteria, that an arranged marriage can not be vaild? Even if the two parties are fully consenting to the union?
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Old 2008-05-20, 18:15   #182
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncwilly View Post
Oh, we have your truth and my truth, do we?
Typically moronic straw man response. The topic was definition
of marriage and you magically twist the argument to be somehow about
some mystical value called truth.

We may have different definitions. That is why there is a debate.

However, truth is not a concept that is applicable in this debate.
This is a debate about equal rights. Whether one definition or the
other is true is meaningless nonsense.
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Old 2008-05-20, 18:30   #183
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
Typically moronic straw man response. The topic was definition
of marriage and you magically twist the argument to be somehow about
some mystical value called truth.
No, I was using truth as an exemplar. I figured that you would find the modern concept of "your" and "my" truth as rediculous and repugnant.

You gave a "your" definition and "my" definition answer. Fusie is starting from an historical classical definiton (a statement of fact, if you will [else what good is a dictionary, etc.]). You are choosing an updated/changed definition. So, likewise, many would find that unsuitable. If, you think that a word needs to be redefined (or has been, by changed usage), that can be debated. Fact and truth have been advanced with new scientific knowledge. If you want to change 'the' definition, do so in an appropriate manner. For example: 'I think that marriage should be defined as....'
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Old 2008-05-20, 19:50   #184
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If the choice is between a classical definition of marriage which served the purposes of past civilisations and a modern one which meets the needs of modern societies, then I'm for the latter. The historical definition of a voter (when democracy was introduced) used to be a male person, but much of the democratic world accepts a more modern concept now without question even though it's less than a century old. If Fusion_power (whose posting I found obscure as I've said) is against the legal right for two men or two women to marry on the grounds that it would be a new situation which we haven't seen before, then I find that to be no argument at all.
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Old 2008-05-20, 20:21   #185
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Brian,

It is interesting that you bring up the right to vote. I think that there is a significant parallel to be observed. As you note, the right to vote was originally limited to males. (Actually, as I recall, it was even further restricted to "landed" gentry). As society changed its values, NEW laws were passed to extend the right to additional groups. In fact, the Constitution was amended in order to accomplish this.

On the other hand, some here seem to be attempting to extend governmental sanction and benefits to same-sex couples, not by passing new laws meant to extend those benefits, but by "creative redefinition" of the terminology that was used in describing the class of individuals to whom the current benefits are extended.

I specifically reject your assertion that "the legal right for two men or two women to marry" not "a new situation".

Lobby all you wish to extend benefits to this group of individuals, but, please, don't try to claim that the changes proposed are not "new" benefits that have not yet been granted.
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Old 2008-05-20, 20:35   #186
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But I'm not claiming that the changes are not new benefits. They are. Times change and we need to change laws to accommodate the new situation.

Edit: to clarify what I said: Fusion_power's assertion if I understood it correctly was that the rights of same-sex couples to marry should not be granted *because* that had not been done before. To me it's a non-sequitur.

Last fiddled with by Brian-E on 2008-05-20 at 20:37
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Old 2008-05-20, 20:52   #187
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
That is *your* definition. My definition is that marriage is a union
between two people who love each other and want to formalize
their commitment to one another.

Marriage is more than just a civil union because it conveys a message
to the rest of society that two people have committed to one another.
OK, feeling straw-mannish here ... I claim that historically speaking, the institution of marriage [as practiced in all its various ways in hugely diverse cultures] was always ultimately about "stable social structure within with to have and raise children." Commitment of partners to each other was a proxy for the "stable" part of that equation. If anyone violently disagrees, please provide evidence for your claim to the contrary.

Proceeding from that Ansatz... sanctioning gay marriage implies [among other things] that the state is saying in effect "procreation is no longer crucial - we extend the same benefit to by-definition-nonprocreative-unions as we do to heterosexual ones." [I ignore the technicality of lesbians having children by way of IVF or "live sperm donor" - gay male unions don't have that option, so they satisfy the non-procreative aspect.] In other words, the "love and commitment" Bob mentions are the new key determinant in marriage. That also implies that whether the union is sexual or not no longer matters - and indeed, historically there have been asexual heterosexual marriages, just on balance the overwhelming majority were sexual, so enough children were born that civilization was never threatened. Fine. So let's say that for all of lives me and my [hypothetical] sister Trudy have had a very close bond, beyond that of normal siblings. We would like to formalize our commitment to each other in some way beyond that of mere sibling-ness, by getting married. We are willing to aver under oath that our union will be loving and committed, but asexual. In fact, to allay any possible fears about us ever suffering a moment's drunken indiscretion and me knocking Trudy up with a child at much higher risk of birth defects than normal, I'm even willing to have a vasectomy as a condition of the marriage. What possible objection could the state have to this?
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