Redefining a Human Institution

I came across a great piece on the redefinition of marriage written by George Weigel. Here is an excerpt from the article he wrote in the National Review:

There is a curious rhetorical fact that has usually gone unremarked in these debates, but which is worth pointing out. That what the New York state legislature approved has to be described, not as marriage, but as “gay marriage” or “same-sex marriage” is itself a verbal indicator that what is being done here is counterintuitive. We all know, or thought we knew, what marriage is, and to add the qualifier “gay” or “same-sex” is a tacit admission by the proponents of the practice that it requires an appeal to authority to enforce what seems strange, odd, not right. The verbal tic of “gay marriage” or “same-sex” marriage is thus itself a rhetorical warning sign that what was done in Albany was an exercise in raw state power, the state’s asserting that it can do X simply because it claims that it has the power to do so.

You can read the whole article here.

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46 Responses to “Redefining a Human Institution”

  1. Michael says:

    It has been referred to as Marriage Equality in legislation if you recall, not gay-marriage. It is and always has been a fight to make marriage rights available to all Americans rather than just to the ones who identify themselves as straight.

    Can you tell me one example of how one relationship harms another relationship in any way, shape or form? All of the so-called “defenders of marriage” have not been able to do that. If you can, then I know that you are not merely persecuting gay people by denying them the same rights that straight people have. Tell me one example of how one relationship can physically or emotionally harm another unrelated relationship in any way.

    Thank you,

    Michael

  2. Emily Ross says:

    What a great paragraph! I’ve never heard this point brought up before, but its so true. A shout-out to all those that worked for the truth and against “same-sex marriage” in New York. I am a Mormon (member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) living in Utah, but from myself and many others out here, know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  3. Cristina says:

    We stand by you ArchBishop..
    Praying for you daily. Do not get discourage– WE HAVE VICTORY IN CHRIST!

    We love you.

  4. Sal says:

    Michael asks how “one relationship can physically or emotionally harm another unrelated relationship”. The answer is that it does not harm my relationship. That’s not my worry. I worry for my children. I am already an adult with a true understanding of marriage. How can I teach my children what marriage truly is if we live in a place where our government has imposed a different religion on us? Even if I do succeed in educating my children in the truth, who will they be able to marry if other families have given in to the new state religion?

    You see, it’s not that I worry for my own marriage, I worry for the future of my children, and all children. They deserve the best possible chance to grow up knowing the truth, and not being led to believe that gay relationships can be the same as the relationship between husband and wife.

    If people want to have gay relationships, that’s their right, but they shouldn’t be so selfish as to want to force it upon the rest of us and our families.

  5. Gene S. says:

    Thank you for sharing this excerpt. New Yorkers wonder (and of course some don’t) why the majority of the country regards us on both coasts as far out of touch. The Albany driven altering of the term “marriage” further reinforces this perception of NY.

  6. Cristina says:

    Michael the reality is marriage is meant for a man and woman..
    for a woman and a man that brought you life. — its the natural law of life. always has.

    Its a perfect puzzle. and thats final.

    people need to stop pushing their beliefs on people… 2000+ years things have been perfectly fine, but now things want to change but not for the better. Our children will grow up so confuse.

    why for peace can it be called ” Union or simply domestic partners” why marriage?

    Please understand I say this all in love.

  7. Elisa says:

    Dear Michael,

    Are you Catholic? I hope you are so that this example may offer clarity. One idea that may helps me understand why so many defenders of marriage, including the Church, say that this effects us all is the teaching that we are all one in the Body of Christ. When one part suffers, all the parts suffer. The Church teaches that sin separates us from God and one another in that way our actions hurt ourselves. When others are hurt in effect as we are all one, we all are wounded.

    We are one body, one body in Christ. We are the bride, we are to be kept holy, to recognize our dignity restored by Christ’s mercy and grace.

    God bless you.

  8. Mary says:

    Michael, the human body was not designed for homosexual sex. It was designed for man/woman reproduction. When the parts fit, the body is protected. Two men trying to duplicate heterosexual sex, are engaging in risky sex. We hear much about AIDS; not so much about anal cancer, STDs, and other ways that the homosexuals are injured.

    You can do what you want Michael. But it is a destructive lie to tell children and teenagers, especially boys, that homosexuality is just like heterosexuality. It is not. Will never be. No “law” can ever make it so.

  9. Katherine says:

    Michael,

    What Elisa says is true in that all sin harms the Body of Christ. From a civil/non-religious perspective, however, there are many other ways in which people of faith in particular will be harmed by this legislation. We can look to Massachusetts, Washington D.C. and Illinois where Catholic Charities was forced to shut down its adoption programs because its refusal to place children with homosexual couples was declared “discriminatory.” In other words, the individuals making up those organizations were forced to choose between following the dictates of their consciences and providing a particular charitable service. The claim that children have a right to a mother and a father is “hateful” and “prejudiced.” Justices of the Peace who are faithful to the Judeo-Christian tradition may be forced to choose between their conscience and their job. Photographers and florists in other states have been sued, and lost, for their unwillingness to do homosexual “weddings.” History & social science books will be rewritten and will paint those who stand by traditional marriage as bigots, undermining parents’ authority over their children who are exposed to such propaganda. These are just a few of many examples of the harm that will be done to others because of this legislation, which amounts to social engineering of the most blantant kind.

    Your Excellency, thank you once again for your defense of Truth. You and your brother Bishops and all priests are in my prayers daily.

  10. AndyP/Doria2 says:

    Some posters ask how homosexual sex/marriage harms society. Well, there is a wealth of information on the Net on this topic but here are just 2 fine examples:

    How Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ Will Harm Christians July 5th, 2008 by Charles Colson

    It is all about equal rights, the gay “marriage” lobby keeps telling us. We just want the right to marry, like everyone else. That is what they are telling us. But that is not what they mean. If same-sex “marriage” becomes the law of the land, we can expect massive persecution of the Church. As my friend Jennifer Roback Morse notes in the National Catholic Register, “Legalizing same-sex ‘marriage’ is not a stand-alone policy . . . Once governments assert that same-sex unions are the equivalent of marriage, those governments must defend and enforce a whole host of other social changes.” The bad news is these changes affect other liberties we take for granted, such as religious freedom and private property rights. Several recent cases give us a sobering picture of what we can expect if we do not actively embrace-and even promote-same-sex “marriage.” For instance, a Methodist retreat center recently refused to allow two lesbian couples to use a campground pavilion for a civil union ceremony. The state of New Jersey punished the Methodists by revoking the center’s tax-exempt status-a vindictive attack on the Methodists’ religious liberty.

    In Massachusetts, where judges imposed gay marriage a few years ago, Catholic Charities was ordered to accept homosexual couples as candidates for adoption. Rather than comply with an order that would be harmful to children, Catholic Charities closed down its adoption program.

    California public schools have been told they must be “gay friendly,” as Roback Morse notes. But it will not stop with public schools. Just north of the border in Quebec, the government told a Mennonite school that it must conform to provincial law regarding curriculum-a curriculum that teaches children that homosexuality is a valid lifestyle. How long will it be before the U.S. government goes after private schools?

    Even speaking out against homosexuality can get you fired. Crystal Dixon, an associate vice president at the University of Toledo, was fired after writing an opinion piece in the Toledo Free Press in support of traditional marriage . . . Fired-for exercising her First Amendment rights!
    Promoters of same-sex “marriage” seem to go out of their way to target Christian businesses and churches. Their goal, it seems, is not the right to “marry,” but to punish anyone who disagrees with them. Clearly, there is a spiritual battle going on here: Christians are under attack because they are a public witness to the fact that a holy God created us male and female, and we will always put obedience to Him and His laws above obedience to any earthly demand for loyalty.

    The coming persecution of Christians is one more reason why we need to get involved with efforts to pass laws at the state and federal level defining marriage as a legal relationship between one man and one woman. We must protect, not only genuine marriage, but also many of the freedoms we now take for granted: freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of association, freedom to use private property the way we see fit-all are under threat. And we must tell our friends and neighbors why gay “marriage” is not just about equality: It is about forcing religious believers to accept the validity of the homosexual lifestyle-or else.

    This update courtesy of BreakPoint. Link – http://www.catholicexchange.com/2008/07/05/113083/

    And worse:

    “Gay” Sex Kills By J. Matt Barber MichNews.com Apr 22, 2008

    Can you imagine officials at a middle school, junior high or high school setting aside a day to promote “tolerance” for heavy smoking and drinking among children? How about a day where teachers encourage kids to “embrace who they are,” pick up that crack pipe and give it a stiff toke? Neither can I. The public would go ballistic, and for good reason. But that hasn’t stopped officials in thousands of schools across the country from promoting other politically correct and socially “in-vogue” behaviors that — both statistically and manifestly — are every bit as dangerous as the aforementioned frowned-upon behaviors. That’s exactly what the homosexual activist “Day of Silence” is all about — advancing, through clever, feel-good propaganda, full acceptance among children of the homosexual lifestyle. Just the Facts Ma’am

    By recently admitting that “HIV is a gay disease,” Matt Foreman, outgoing Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, acknowledged what the medical community has known for decades: the homosexual lifestyle is extremely high-risk and often leads to disease and even death. In fact, multiple studies have established that homosexual conduct, especially among males, is considerably more hazardous to one’s health than a lifetime of chain smoking. To the consternation of “gay” activist flat-earthers and homosexual AIDS holocaust deniers everywhere, one such study — conducted by pro-“gay” researchers in Canada — was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology (IJE) in 1997. While the medical consensus is that smoking knocks from two to 10 years off an individual’s life expectancy, the IJE study found that homosexual conduct shortens the lifespan of “gays” by an astounding “8 to 20 years” — more than twice that of smoking. “[U]nder even the most liberal assumptions,” concluded the study, “gay and bisexual men in this urban centre are now experiencing a life expectancy similar to that experienced by all men in Canada in the year 1871. … [L]ife expectancy at age 20 years for gay and bisexual men is 8 to 20 years less than for all men.” This morose reality makes a strong case for a fitting redefinition of so-called “homophobia,” that being “Homophobia:

    The rational fear that ‘gay sex’ will kill you!” The fact that we don’t have mandatory surgeon general warnings on the side of condom wrappers is a testament to the power and influence wielded by the radical homosexual lobby. (Warning: Male-male anal sodomy has been proven to shorten your lifespan by up to 20 years.) Not surprisingly, that same homosexual lobby and its codependent enablers in the mainstream media moved quickly to sweep the IJE study under the rug. Under tremendous pressure, the researchers who conducted the study even jumped into the political damage control fray issuing a statement which read, “[W]e do not condone the use of our research in a manner that restricts the political or human rights of gay and bisexual men or any other group.” Yeah, so? Of course, that’s all just worthless fluff. All the political spin in the world doesn’t change reality, nor does it eliminate the study’s disturbing conclusions or practical implications. The research left ZERO wiggle room for anyone who would argue that homosexuality is a “perfectly normal and healthy alternative sexual orientation.” The risks associated with homosexual conduct are so drastic, in fact, that U.S. health regulations prohibit men who have sex with men (MSM) and women who have had sex with MSM, from even donating blood. Consider that, according to the Food and Drug Administration, MSM, “have an HIV prevalence 60 times higher than the general population, 800 times higher than first time blood donors and 8,000 times higher than repeat blood donors.”

    Adults and children who engage in homosexual conduct, especially males, are also susceptible, at an astronomical rate, to nearly all other forms of sexually transmitted disease (STD). For example, the Hepatitis B virus is about five to six times more prevalent among “gays,” and Hepatitis C is twice as common. But perhaps most shocking are today’s syphilis rates among homosexual men and adolescents. A recent study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that although homosexuals comprise only a fraction of the population (one to two percent), they account for an epidemic 64 percent of all syphilis cases.

    The “Day of Silence”
    In light of the irrefutable medical facts, it should be considered criminally reckless for educators to teach children that homosexual conduct is a normal, safe and perfectly acceptable alternative form of sexual expression (or “sexual orientation”). But instead, the “gay” lifestyle is vigorously promoted in our public schools. Sexually confused children who suffer from gender identity disorder and same-sex attractions are told to “embrace who they are,” and are encouraged to entertain deviant and dangerous sexual temptations. “But always use a condom!” liberal educators bellow. (Forget that condoms have a perilously high failure rate and are incapable of preventing numerous STDs such as the HPV virus.) On April 25, 2008, the pro-homosexual indoctrination of your children comes to a boil. Homosexual activists and like-minded liberal educators will be pushing the so-called “Day of Silence” on kids in thousands of schools across the country. The “Day of Silence” (DOS) is organized by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), one of the most militant and well-funded of the powerful homosexual pressure groups. DOS purports to confront the alleged systematic harassment and bullying of children who self-identify as homosexual, bisexual or “transgender.” (For a sampling of the kinds of things GLSEN teaches children, click here. Be warned, though. It’s pretty graphic.) To be sure, bullying and harassment should not be tolerated against anyone, anywhere for any reason, and those who engage in such activities should be firmly disciplined. However, DOS has very little to do with “bullying” and has everything to do with propaganda.

    During DOS, children and teachers are encouraged to disrupt the school day by refusing to speak, in a show of support to self-described “gay,” “lesbian,” “bisexual” and “transgender” students. Kids are additionally taught that Biblical truth, which holds that human sexuality is a gift from God shared between husband and wife within the bonds of marriage, is “homophobic,” “hateful” and “discriminatory.” Our schools are supposed to be places of learning, not places of political indoctrination. It’s the height of impropriety and cynicism for “gay” activists and school officials to use good-hearted but misguided children as pawns in their attempt to further a deceptive, highly controversial and polarizing political agenda. DOS is pure, unadulterated propaganda and, based on the medical science, amounts to nothing short of educational malpractice. With liberal school officials in tow, these militant homosexual activists are brazenly circumventing and abusing parental authority to further this dangerous political agenda. DOS is also a slap in the face to the many students with traditional moral values. So, it’s time for the “Day of Silence” to finally live up to its name. It’s time for these radical adult activists to be silent in our children’s schools. And you can to do something to help. At DOS-participating schools all over the country, parents are joining with dozens of pro-family organizations, such as Concerned Women for America (CWA), in a “Day of Silence Walkout.” They’re keeping their kids home from school on DOS as a show of protest. (For more information visit http://www.missionamerica.com).

    Parents and children are also strongly encouraged to participate in the Alliance Defense Fund’s non-disruptive “Day of Truth,” which will follow DOS on Monday, April 28, 2008. (For more information visit http://www.dayoftruth.org). Children are impressionable. Their young minds are fresh clay ready for molding, and these adult homosexual activists know it. Your child’s spiritual, emotional and physical well-being belongs in your hands, not in the hands of liberal activists and elitist educators with a deceptive and destructive political agenda. It’s time to shatter the silence with truth.

    Copyright by J. Matt Barber

    Matt Barber is one of the “like-minded men” with Concerned Women for America. He is an attorney concentrating in constitutional law and serves as CWA’s policy director for cultural issues.

    Copyright© MichNews.com. All Rights Reserved.

    Link – http://www.michnews.com/artman/publish/article_20058.shtml

    His Eminence is right. The fact that this is even being discussed shows how far we’ve fallen. Woe to those who call evil good and good evil.

  11. If homosexuals are \born that way,\ doesn’t that mean that there’s a genetic component to their sexual orientation? If that’s true, then why isn’t that genetic component extinct, since homosexuals cannot by definition reproduce?

    That being said, it doesn’t matter how sexual orientation is determined. Nor does it matter how many people (as in the majority or not) believe that same-sex marriage is a matter of civil rights. Morality, as Pope Benedict XVI said when he was still Cardinal Ratzinger, isn’t determined by a majority vote.

    George Weigel is correct — \same-sex marriage\ and \gay marriage\ are terms that need qualifiers. In addition, they are oxymorons.

  12. Tom says:

    Thank you NY lawmakers! NOW is the beginning of the end to the persecution of LGBT people. All Christians should rejoice! A relationship is a relationship and is entitled to the equal respect.

    It would be great if we could work for tolerance, acceptance, love, and the end to bigotry and hatred veiled in righteousness. I think Christ would like that very much.

  13. Different Michael says:

    To Michael: Another reason would be that gay \marriage\ also assumes the right to raise children. A child has the right to a mother and a father. To purposely not give them both is selfish. Rosie O’Donnell even said her son wanted a dad. But she said if he did then he couldn’t have her. She made him choose. That’s selfish!! I’m sure her kids will have all kinds of emotional problems that time will show.

    I’m praying for you.

  14. Pete says:

    This is ridiculous. Why don’t you just explain to us all how quickly the New York State Roman Catholic divorce rate will skyrocket because of this legislation and how large an increase that will be.

    Oh, wait. You mean this won’t cause existing NY State Roman Catholic marriages to terminate?

    OK, then what about the soon-to-be-married? That is, the engaged straight New Yorkers, or the NY Roman Catholics couples who are merely dating. Please explain how this legislation will convince those people noy to marry each other.

    Ridiculous.

    Go help the poor, for God’s sakes.

  15. Melissa says:

    The problem, Michael, is that same-sex relations are naturally disordered. When the state tries to normalize what is, by nature, abnormal, it hurts everyone. It especially hurts those who suffer from homosexuality because it does not encourage them to deal with their disorder. The Church’s opposition to this normalization of homosexual relations is not draconian nor is it done out of malice; quite the contrary, it is done out of compassion.

  16. diana newman says:

    Can you please provide references for the following information? 1- Research on gay marriage suggests greater violence, less stability and less monogmay than heterosexual marriage .

    2- Sexual abuse is 1% in the Catholic Church and much greater in other religions and among public school teachers.

    Thanks so much

  17. Jevaun says:

    Thank you Michael for bringing up the only point that needed to be brought up. Of course casually it’s going to be referred to as gay marriage or same-sex marriage. But the legislative bill and the fight has always been for marriage equality (http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?bn=A08354&term=2011).

    @Sal, in regards to your “How can I teach my children what marriage truly is if we live in a place where our government has imposed a different religion on us? Even if I do succeed in educating my children in the truth, who will they be able to marry if other families have given in to the new state religion?”

    The government is not imposing any religion on you or your children. What our state Senate just did is reaffirm that although our faiths as a people (almost 20 million) are many and varied and sometimes nonexistent (and that is all OK), our government has no right to impose the morals of any one religion as the rule of law in our society. The only thing your children, and all of our children will have to bear in regards to this matter in our public school system is that having two daddies or two mommies does not make little Billy any different than you or I. And there is an overwhelming consensus in child psychology, and sociology that supports that (http://www.nytimes.com/1996/01/07/us/homosexual-parents-raising-children-support-for-pro-and-con.html).

    This country may have Christian roots, but our founding fathers agreed that there needs to be a separation of Church and State for a true democracy to flourish; First Amendment to the Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ….”
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separation_of_church_and_state_in_the_United_States)

    With respect and regards,
    Jevaun

  18. Adam says:

    Michael’s comment is the only well-balanced one so far, so I thought I’d clarify some points that have come up.

    Sal said: “You see, it’s not that I worry for my own marriage, I worry for the future of my children, and all children.” Ironically Sal, that’s the reason why I’m most fervently FOR marriage equality. There’s this strange misconception that’s ubiquitous throughout the anti-marriage camp, and it’s that if we start telling children same sex relationships are normal, that it will cause them to become gay. While I can respect that concern, it’s the result of woeful miseducation. I don’t see how any heterosexual who is confident in his or her own sexual orientation can even think that homosexuality is a choice – that suggests that all people who have this point of view have strong homosexual tendencies that they have chosen to actively suppress. The fact of the matter is (and yes, it’s fact supported by very strong scientific evidence), that homosexuality is not a matter of choice, but rather an inborn trait that may or may not (but most likely is) affected by traditional genetic inheritance. Sal should be more concerned about the children who commit suicide because they are born gay, have feelings that they’ve been taught are wrong from a young age, and suffer massive depression during adolescence – a time that is already difficult for ALL children…not just the ones who are the target of institutionalized discrimination and hate, such is advocated by Archbishop Dolan. Additionally, Sal should be concerned that his own bigotry (though I know that he thinks he’s doing the right thing – and on a level, I can respect that desire) will lead his own children, by example, to hate others for what they fundamentally are (and what, one might say, God created them to be). I personally know some Catholic parents whose children committed suicide because of the vitriolic attitude of the Church toward gays and lesbians…it’s funny what some people are so certain is truth until they suddenly have to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. The worst part is – as a parent, you will probably NEVER know if your child is going through this until it is too late….because by opposing acceptance of the gay community, you’re sending the message to your children that you hate gays (including them, if they happen to be in that demographic).

    Cristina says: “Its a perfect puzzle. and thats final.” Actually, it’s not Cristina. This is a very simplified view of human sexuality and one that has been shot down repeatedly. Human relationships are not just about procreative sex and CERTAINLY not just about sex – procreative or not. Many, many loving heterosexual couples join into marriage regardless of their ability to procreate. Many others join into relationships despite being handicapped in ways that might prohibit sexual relations or make them difficult. Many older couples continue to love each other long after deteriorating health has made sexual relations difficult or no longer safe. All of these situations should be blessed and celebrated. If your Church holds that only procreative sex is ground for marriage, then by all means, please prohibit these things from your places of worship. But don’t try to impose these views on other communities that choose to embrace love between two people who cannot procreate. If your argument is based on “science” you should know you’re very wrong there as well. Most animal species engage in same sex relations (a majority of the ones that do are higher-order species that mate monogamously for life), so you can’t really argue it’s not natural. Neuro-imaging has shown us that, in the human brain, gay and straight people differ in the areas dealing with sexual attraction. This is proof that people are born gay or straight – it’s not a choice. Even if you think it’s a disorder (which is an outdated view that any credible medical or scientific expert would scoff at), then to argue against gay marriage, you’d also have to argue against the marriage rights of the mentally handicapped, people with inborn cardiac disorders, etc, etc. Just because your worldview consists of one thing, doesn’t mean there isn’t an entire spectrum of nature.

    It’s odd to me to see people continue to argue so fervently against marriage…people say things like “marriage has been one man one woman for 2000+ years” (actually, no, it hasn’t in all places or societies) and point to history, but choose to ignore other parts of history. The world changes as we learn more about who we are as humans (and one might say, who God made us to be). The Church has been wrong about nature before – Galileo is a poignant example. As the world moves forward and we gain more knowledge, we’re better suited to understand the natural world – and we have a moral obligation to adapt our views to fit into this understanding. Maybe the better approach would be to admit that human fallibility might be preventing you from understanding yet another facet of God’s creation…

    …if you can’t accept that as a possibility, you might really want to question the real root of your motivation…because it certainly isn’t love or God’s word.

  19. Peter says:

    I have three teenage children. We raised them to be open minded and accepting. They are. But in one area they surprise me. They and their friends profess total acceptance of gays, join school pro-gay movements. Are very adamant in their support of gay marriage. But then they and all their friends have no idea what homosexuality means. They make more fun of and mockery of gays and gay behavior. The drastic rise of gay bullying among their peers and in society plus their confusion leaves me puzzled. They have friends who say gay is not a choice but then try out being bi or gay. Its suddenly a choice. A very confusing time has only become more confusing.
    BTW why has this bill been such a secret. Its still not published anywhere and from what i can find it gives anyone to get married to any adult. two straight men can marry just to get insurance. So what keeps companies from just dropping family insurance? Marriage is now just a contract not a basic social institution.

  20. William says:

    The term is ‘marriage equality’, the opponents are the group focused on calling it ‘gay marriage’ or ‘same sex marriage’. But whatever you call it, the legislation is about offering equal rights and access under the law (not in the sacrament of marriage) to all New Yorkers.

    Weigel refers to ‘gay marriage’ as a verbal tic; is the ‘sacrament of marriage
    a verbal tic as well? Face it, the opposition to marriage equality is deeply homophobic and the arguments are questionable interpretations of the Bible. None of the arguments from the opposition addressed the civil institution of marriage, they are religious arguments. The new legislation protects the religious institutions but, please, the legislators clearly decided it was not a valid argument to oppose civil marriage equality.

    Interesting that those posting are so focused on protecting the children. What have you done lately to stop sexual abuse of children and to get the Catholic Church to fully address its role in the abuses committed by priests? Children need to grow up surrounded by love, nothing in the marriage equality legislation suggests that would not happen.

    It is unfathomable to me why the Church remains so focused on gays and lesbians who want to commit in love to one another.

  21. olytitan80 says:

    Marriage is between a man, woman, AND God. Which is why same-sex marriage truly is unacceptalbe…even when whether voted otherwise. Simply voting doesn’t make something correct, right nor true. This was created nearly 16 years ago, before all of the huge issues of same-sex marriage were being yelled about as \discriminatory and blah blah blah\…being prepared to stand up for this issue before it was so much in our country’s face. There was a reason for Sodom and Gomorrah.

    http://lds.org/family/proclamation?lang=eng

    The Family
    A Proclamation to the World

    The First Presidency and Council of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

    We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.

    All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.

    In the premortal realm, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshipped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life. The divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave. Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally.

    The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife. We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. We further declare that God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between man and woman, lawfully wedded as husband and wife.

    We declare the means by which mortal life is created to be divinely appointed. We affirm the sanctity of life and of its importance in God’s eternal plan.

    Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. “Children are an heritage of the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, and to teach them to love and serve one another, observe the commandments of God, and be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.

    The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities. By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners. Disability, death, or other circumstances may necessitate individual adaptation. Extended families should lend support when needed.

    We warn that individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.

    We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.

    This proclamation was read by President Gordon B. Hinckley as part of his message at the General Relief Society Meeting held September 23, 1995, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

  22. Bishop Dolan – What is done, is done!

    Now what is the Archbishop of New York going to proclaim to the Catholic Politicians who voted for this “new definition” of marriage, as well as to the Catholics who support this intrinsic evil?

    I have commented on your blog in the past regarding this topic

    1) Are we to ignore Canon 229 #1? (Can 229 #1 Lay persons are bound by an obligation and possess the right to acquire a knowledge of Christian doctrine adapted to their capacity and condition so that they can live in accord with that doctrine.”)

    2) Are we to ignore what the Catechism states? “Mindful of Christ’s words to his apostles, ‘He who hears you, hears me,’ the faithful receive with docility the teaching and directives that their pastors give them in different forms.” (#87)

    3) Are we to ignore what the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith states? “It would be a mistake to confuse the proper autonomy exercised by Catholics in political life with the claim of a principle that prescinds from the moral and social teaching of the Church.” (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, 2002)

    4) Are we to ignore Canon 915? (Can. 915 Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.)

    I was very disappointed when the statement was released on Saturday from the New York Bishops regarding the passing of the same sex marriage bill, that your name was not boldly leading the charge on the document. The only Bishop who placed his name personally to the text was Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of Brooklyn

    http://www.catholic.org/national/national_story.php?id=41895

    When a Catholic Politician votes for a same sex marriage bill (now a law), their position is unacceptable to the Church and is scandalous to its members. Moreover, quoting George Weigel in the National Review does not cut the mustard with regard to address this matter.

    Archbishop, God is on your side. Take a stand, do not play it safe. Jesus did not play it safe, nor did any of the saints. You are not being “pastoral” by failing to call souls to conversion (Catholic politicians who voted for this same-sex law and Catholics who support it), failing to protect the flock from scandal, and lastly failing to safeguard the worthy reception of Communion.

    Please pray about what I am telling you in front of the Blessed Sacrament during your daily Holy Hour.

    Be assured of my daily prayers
    Your brother in Christ
    Joe Reciniello

  23. Adam says:

    @olytitan80: The fate of Sodom and Gomorrah has nothing to do with homosexuality. It has to do with how one treats guests. Additionally, if you head ahead from that oft-quoted passage, you’ll see that Lot’s daughters engaged in non-consesual incest with him in order to repopulate their tribe. So even IF you want to use Sodom and Gomorrah as an example against homosexuality (which any knowledgeable, properly-educated Biblical expert would raise an eyebrow at), you have to also stand by the argument that incest and nonconsensual relations are acceptable. What you cut and pasted is perfectly fine – as your belief. Again: AS YOUR BELIEF. This nation is not a theocracy and you have no right to legislate your beliefs on others. It’s been said a million times – if you believe homosexuality is sinful and results in damnation, then don’t practice it. Simple enough.

    @Bryan: The link you posted is propaganda. It’s clearly from a biased source. On the internet, one can find websites that say absolutely anything (the sky is purple, elephants can fly, etc). It’s important to distinguish factual, unbiased sources from flat out lies. The Southern Poverty Law Center has listed the organization you linked to – Mass Resistance – as a hate group, a status that group has held since 2008: http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2010/winter/the-hard-liners

  24. Adam says:

    @AndyP/Doria2:

    The article you posted is riddle with misinformation – here are two which are particularly well-spun:

    “one such study — conducted by pro-“gay” researchers in Canada — was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology (IJE) in 1997. While the medical consensus is that smoking knocks from two to 10 years off an individual’s life expectancy, the IJE study found that homosexual conduct shortens the lifespan of “gays” by an astounding “8 to 20 years” — more than twice that of smoking.”:
    -Your ability to spin facts is actually impressive. However, you’ve taken a key aspect of this study out of context (didn’t think anyone would actually go to the primary source, huh?) To quote the methodology: “Vital statistics data were obtained for a large Canadian urban centre from 1987 to 1992.” The key thing to note here is that the data was gathered from a population that would have contracted HIV likely before it was known that the virus existed and definitely before drugs existed to treat it (with the exception of AZT, which is extremely cytotoxic in and of itself and contributes to mortality independently of HIV). If you would have gathered the same statistics from the following groups during the same period, you would have garnered the same result in terms of early mortality: hemophiliacs, people receiving blood transfusions in the late 1970s/early 1980s, heterosexual Haitians, and heterosexual sub-Saharan African populations. HIV affected everyone and the mortality rate in your quoted study is independent of sexual orientation, the sample selected was homosexual – those are two different measures. Your argument is invalid.

    “Kids are additionally taught that Biblical truth, which holds that human sexuality is a gift from God shared between husband and wife within the bonds of marriage, is “homophobic,” “hateful” and “discriminatory.””:
    -No one is teaching that to anyone. While you’ve done well in carefully choosing your words to victimize your point of view, your statement is based in fallacy. No one is saying that your beliefs in and of themselves are “homophobic, hateful, and discriminatory”…what people are saying is that your desire to force those beliefs on all people in a secular arena is thus…because it is. It doesn’t matter if a majority disagrees with a minority – one of the main obligations the government has to human rights is to protect minorities.

  25. Adam says:

    @Donna Jorgensen Farrell:

    “If homosexuals are \born that way,\ doesn’t that mean that there’s a genetic component to their sexual orientation? If that’s true, then why isn’t that genetic component extinct, since homosexuals cannot by definition reproduce?”

    Yes, there is most likely a genetic component to sexual orientation. Genes affect prenatal development and regulate the body in many other ways than the traditional Mendelian genetics we learn in school (your mother has “gene X” so you inherit it and pass it on to your children). Most behavioral and neurologically-based traits are extremely complex and involve epigenetic components as well (heritable genetic traits that are independent of primary DNA structure and code). Very often, there aren’t single genes that control these very complex traits – that’s why we don’t know the exact genetic cause of diseases like schizophrenia or complex behavioral traits such as sexual orientation. We can, however look at the results of complex genetic activity that are easier to observe and understand, given our current technology. For example – in homosexual populations, we see that the areas of the brain that deal with sexual attraction are more similar in structure and function to the brains of the opposite sex when compared to heterosexuals. This indicates that a neurodevelopmental component is resulting in a “gay” brain and a “straight” brain, and also indicates that sexual orientation is determined by a genetic component.

    The question of extinction is excellent! (and actually a strong argument for homosexual behavior as normal) Traits that are disadvantageous will go extinct from populations over time, while advantageous traits survive. The fact that people have always been, and continue to be, gay is actually direct evidence that homosexual behavior is biologically “normal” and not detrimental to genetic fitness. In fact, from a population standpoint, it’s advantageous for a family group to have homosexual members. Since we’re all highly-genetically similar to our immediate families (99+%), it’s equally advantageous to you genetically if you have children, or if your siblings have children. Making sure your nieces and nephews have access to resources and can continue your family bloodline is genetically advantageous to you (since they basically have the same genes as you) and is referred to as “indirect propagation of alleles”. Now, imagine you have a very large family (a dozen brothers and sisters) and you all live in the same area (there is no access to the money required for everyone to move far away from one another). In this area, there is a limited amount of resources – food, jobs, water, etc. If you AND all 12 of your brothers and sisters have children (let’s say 12 each), there are suddenly 156 more people in this small, limited area! It’s not as good for your genes to be carried by 170+ people who are just barely getting enough to eat and live on, then to be carried by 5-10 who have better access to resources. Nature’s solution to this (whether by design or not), is to have some of your brothers and sisters NOT reproduce. Instead, they’ll make sure your children have access to resources while not forcing them to compete with their own offspring. However, for some odd reason, human beings do not like to be alone (our brains prefer forming pair-bonds). Since forming a loving bond with a member of the opposite sex would cause your non-reproducing siblings to, well…reproduce, the next step in the natural solution is for their brains to form a pair with another human being with whom they cannot reproduce: homosexuality. Therefore, they have the emotional stability and happiness to contribute constructively to your family and the larger community, while also keeping your overall gene pool more fit.

  26. Holly says:

    This is all a fantastic argument for universal health care coverage. Let’s face it, this is a huge benefit that families in the GLT community is largely missing out on without state-recognized marriage. The other benefits that homosexual partners want can easily be obtained through a will and a power of attorney. No marriage is needed. If we all had health care then the most radical participants on either side would want or abhor gay-marriage. The temperate middle would tolerate each other and live our lives. Let’s stop inflaming each other and get back to work on a really hugely important issue -respectful health care for all Americans. Too many of us are one accident or illness from real financial ruin. That scares people regardless of their sexual or religious orientation.

  27. charles says:

    The National Review? Well, here’s what the Jesuit’s at America have to say:

    “The church’s stance on same-sex marriage is very well known. It has been made well known by the Vatican; and it has been made clear by many bishops in this country. The church teaches, in short, that same-sex marriage is not permissible because it promotes homosexual activity and redefines the traditional concept of marriage. There can be few Catholics, and non-Catholics, who do not know this.

    What is less well known is the church’s teaching on gay and lesbian people themselves. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that gays and lesbians are to be accepted with “respect, compassion and sensitivity.” Jesus Christ asks us to love everyone, not simply those with whom we agree, not simply those in our churches and not simply those who “follow the rules.” But the church’s message on gays and lesbians is often obscured by its vocal opposition to same-sex marriage. Gays and lesbians hear about little else in church circles. And with no other group does the church speak almost exclusively the language of prohibition, rather than that of welcome.

    That is why bishops who speak of love and acceptance should be praised, like Joseph M. Sullivan, a retired auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn, who wrote in the Buffalo News on June 2: “For most Catholics, there can be no statement that better summarizes an attitude of welcoming of our LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender] brothers and sisters than those of Jesus, ‘Love one another as I have loved you.’” There is nothing wrong with telling people that they are loved and lovable. And that all are, indeed, welcome.”

  28. Brian Cook says:

    I only have the time and energy to respond to one comment. Bryan, Mass Resistance has been called out as a hate-group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The SPLC has a fairly strict definition too–groups that spread vicious known lies. I would advise against quoting Mass Resistance.

    Your excellency, can you address the specific criticisms raised against you?

  29. Jevaun says:

    Can we please try and remember that no matter how many references you use that have their basis in religion and faith. Frankly it doesn’t matter. This is a nation of many faiths and a nation that doesn’t use the moral compass of anyone to decide upon legislation.

    @Donna in regards to “Morality, as Pope Benedict XVI said when he was still Cardinal Ratzinger, isn’t determined by a majority vote.”
    Well that’s why he is the pope of the Catholic Church and the leader of one nation: Vatican City. Everything is decided by public vote and consensus in this country because we live in a democracy.

    @AndyP. Frankly I am disappointed in your entire post due to how narrow-minded it is. But i will briefly respond to your main points brought up.

    You saying “Same sex Marriage” will harm Christians as a whole not only rings of hyperbole but plain ignorance. There is a growing number of Christian sects that have come to the realization that love of any kind between consenting adults is not wrong and can never be wrong (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blessing_of_same-sex_unions_in_Christian_churches).
    Do you realize why Catholic Charities needed to comply with the state rules? Because they were funded by the state, and if C.C. couldn’t comply with their rules they would be stripped of their funding. And what is troubling most of all is that they would rather give a child to a single parent then a couple who were in love but just happened to be the same gender (http://www.ewtnnews.com/catholic-news/US.php?id=3023).
    Even though Ms. Dixon has every right to to give her opinion in the free press, being employed by a university, she should have cleared with her employer what she was writing so that it doesn’t put the university in a bad light. I don’t personally agree with that, but that’s simply how it works in the job market and you see instances of that happening all the time.

    Gay sex does not kill. Sex in any circumstance carries with it inherent risks. Mr. Foreman does not represent the gay community anymore than Rev. Al Sharpton represents the black community, and I think you might have looked over that fact in the rest of your comment. But more importantly you left out the context of his comment being that yes, HIV occurs disproportionately in the gay community, at least in America, because the education of using protection isn’t as widespread as it needs to be. And you are just wrong on saying that condom failure rates are very low (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Condom).

    The Day of silence is a brilliant campaign, and teachers are not encouraged to participate since their job is to teach, and students are never forced into participating, because that would inherently go against the core nature of the movement. But if you think that the spreading of awareness of rampant bullying is a bad thing then there is nothing more to say

  30. Elizabeth says:

    Dear Archbishop…..we must call people to fast and pray for our nation. We have so many sins and we as a nation are now officially saying that firt Abortion and now Gay Marriage is OK. We drive prayer and God out of the school and public life and substitute it with all the vices that God talks about that are against the laws of God. As Catholics and Christians we must stand in the balance for our Nation and pray for the conversion of hearts! Do not get discouraged!! We pray for you and ALL the priests daily!!!

  31. Jim says:

    In two week, a gentleman in my office will go back home to India where is scheduled to become “engaged.” His engagement has been arranged by his parents and future in-laws. Despite this very “non-traditional” form of marriage, his wife will benefits from a whole host of benefits including favorable tax treatment and favored immigration benefits on the basis of their union. From a western perspective, they can’t even be said to be in love, yet this is “marriage.”

    The absurdity of your claim that there is only one historical definition of marriage as matched only by your arrogance. I believe in God, but I have no reason that Timothy Dolan has some special relationship with him. I’m quite certain it was Dolan who annointed *himself* as the defender of God’s law.

  32. Rich says:

    Bishop,
    You are obligated under canon law to bar Cuomo, and any other so-called “Catholic” politician who voted to legalize sodomite marriage, from Communion. Will that statement be forthcoming? Without that, your words mean nothing.

  33. Michael J says:

    It has been referred to as Marriage Equality in legislation if you recall, not gay-marriage. It is and always has been a fight to make marriage rights available to all Americans rather than just to the ones who identify themselves as straight.

    Can you tell me one example of how one relationship harms another relationship in any way, shape or form? All of the so-called “defenders of marriage” have not been able to do that. If you can, then I know that you are not merely persecuting gay people by denying them the same rights that straight people have. Tell me one example of how one relationship can physically or emotionally harm another unrelated relationship in any way.

    —————————-
    The above is a fallacious argument because it is rooted in an erroneous construct that ignores and denies the underlying truths regarding the actual purpose of human sexuality and the function of marriage as an integral part of human sexuality. It is not any one relationship that is harmed by the attempt to redefine marriage. Rather, it is each and every relationship that is harmed by such a redefinition for true marriage is the building block of society. The power and authority of the state to define marriage is actually non-existent and any effort to do so is inherently unjust because it is the natural law that has, from the beginning, defined marriage and its purpose. Any other definition is a distortion of what nature,under God’s direction, has already defined, ordained and established. Any other form is artificial and, therefore, erroneous.

  34. Mark says:

    I agree with Rich 100%. It is time for the Catholic Church to do what it has an obligation to do…excommunicate those politicians who are Catholic yet vote against Catholic beliefs. Without that, the Church is a lion with a lot of roar but no bite.

  35. Mark,

    Catholics who vote against Catholic beliefs have already excommunicated themselves. The Church could publicly affirm an individual’s decision to remove him/herself from full communion with the Church, but it doesn’t change what has already been done by that individual.

  36. Jason says:

    With regard to Weigel’s “verbal tic”: The last time in our society we fought this battle, the issue was “interracial marriage.” Thus: “interracial marriage” is itself a verbal indicator that what is being done here is counterintuitive. We all know, or thought we knew, what marriage is, and to add the qualifier “interracial” or “mixed” is a tacit admission by the proponents of the practice that it requires an appeal to authority to enforce what seems strange, odd, not right. The verbal tic of “interracial marriage” or “mixed” marriage is thus itself a rhetorical warning sign that what was done in the Supreme Court in 1967 was an exercise in raw state power, the state’s asserting that it can do X simply because it claims that it has the power to do so.”?

    Sound farfetched? Ask almost any white person particularly in the South pre 1960′s (and undoubtedly some still linger today) whether they might use Archbishop Dolan’s terminology that what the activist Supreme Court in 1967 was an example of “redefining a human institution”? It is not of any value here to go into the complex and tortured history of Sacred Scripture with regard to marriage (cf. polygamy, women as property, eunuchs for the sake of the Kingdom), but suffice it to say that one cannot fall back solely on Scripture and Tradition without an honest assessment of how those have been interpreted and reinterpreted. If Paul had it his way, we’d all be strong and not married at all as we waited for the Kingdom, and then the planet would have died off waiting…

    What is at issue here is secular law. The State should have ABSOLUTELY no business telling our Church who it can witness in marriage (NB: just a reminder, the spouses are the ministers of the Sacrament, the priest or deacon is the witness in the eyes of the Church). Neither should the Church have ANY say in who is recognized as validly or even licitly married beyond its walls. I challenge every Catholic who believes in the Church’s position to the exclusion of any other to call their Jewish friends or their atheist co workers not married when they speak of their husband or wife, because these people were not sacramentally married. And re: Catholic Charities: yes, this is an important challenge which must be worked out in the law. However. One could argue that if CC is going to take state money, it must play by state rules. If one wants to stay completely faithful to the Magisterium as it is currently understood, might not some of the Faithful of means donate generously so that CC can do what it needs to do with no state meddling? Might that not be a purer Church, as the Holy Father recommends? I was appalled when I heard about CC stopping adoptions in MA as a result of the law. Which is pro-life? To place a child in a loving same-sex family, or to have that child languish in foster homes or orphanages, or worse, be aborted? There is much evidence that children of same sex parents turn out no better or worse than those of opposite sex parents. Certainly a child with a roof over his head and parents who love him is better off than one stuck in an orphanage in Russia (I have personally seen such orphanages).

    And just to confirm. Yes. I am a Catholic, indeed 5-6 days/week Communicant. And staunchly pro life–I’ve been to the March for Life in DC 4 times. Let us all unite, straight, gay, single, and MARRIED to live Christ’s command to love God with all our being and love our neighbor as ourselves. And work to affirm all families as long as LOVE is present. It is NOT compassionate to try and break up a family; it is indeed a blasphemy to use the word CUM PATIO, compassion, “to suffer with,” as a justification to fight against loving families.

  37. Christopher Lamparello says:

    Archbishop Dolan, you’re mistaken yet again when it comes to this human rights issue. The gay marriage bill is often referred to as “same-sex marriage” not because it’s a “tacit admission” that marriage equality is wrong. It was done for the same reason that marriage between blacks and whites was once called “interracial marriage.” It means that people see it as a new thing, not a bad thing.

  38. A good article was just posted to Catholic On-line by Deacon Keith Fournier, which I think many of these bloggers, should read. Bishop Thomas J. Tobin (PROVIDENCE, RI) courageously defends marriage between one man and one woman in the wake of the Senate in the State of Rhode Island passing this week HB 6103, which authorizes same-sex civil unions and gives them the same rights and responsibilities as married couples.

    http://www.catholic.org/national/national_story.php?id=41956&page=1

    http://www.dioceseofprovidence.org/index.php?id=14&uudis=229

    In addition, Deacon Keith Fournier includes in his article a directive entitled “Considerations regarding Proposals to Give Legal recognition To Unions Between Homosexual persons” published June 3, 2003 by the then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI)

    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20030731_homosexual-unions_en.html

    In these uncertain times where relativism has hypnotized the masses, Catholics must unite around the Truth. More importantly, we must live the truth with our lives. The older I get as a Catholic the more I see fragmented messages from our clergy and the faithful here in America. To me its simple, the Pope says it, therefore you do it! Here is a piece of reality: I work in Corporate America, if I do not do what my boss tells me, it’s very simple – I am fired!

    A central problem, for the last 3 decades in our country among the Catholic faithful is a lack of catechetical knowledge. Its time for the bishops to acknowledge that failure and start putting an infrastructure in place to correct this reality because it is just that – a reality. What makes the problem exponentially worse is, many Catholic truths and teachings are not being proclaimed from the pulpits in our American churches, basilicas and cathedrals. If our priests do not say it, the faithful will not live it! Catholic schools that profess the name “Catholic” simply are not teaching the fullness and beauty of what the Church proclaims. The fruit of what I am saying is exhibited in our daily newspapers. Lay Catholics and Catholic Politicians consistently are supporting and passing legislation in favor of same sex unions, abortion, etc, etc. These same folks, many of them very sincere, feel they can still maintain a Catholic identity while participating (directly or indirectly) in these intrinsically evil behaviors.

    The time is now for our American Bishops, Priests, and Deacons to unite with one voice around rock solid doctrine. The time is now for fearless preaching. The time is now for authentic Catholic witness.

    Jesus Christ preached his message to 12 uneducated men with one voice, its time for our church leaders to do the same with equal vigor and love

    Be not Afraid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    “Today more than ever, our nation is in need of Catholics who know their faith deeply and express their faith, with integrity, by their daily living.” – Raymond Cardinal Burke

  39. Adam wrote:

    The question of extinction is excellent! (and actually a strong argument for homosexual behavior as normal) Traits that are disadvantageous will go extinct from populations over time, while advantageous traits survive.

    Please, Adam, give an example of an advantageous trait of homosexuality.

  40. Adam says:

    This is worth sharing, because I think it makes a very strong point about love:

    “We pursued our functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of the neural correlates of romantic love in 24 subjects, half of whom were female (6 heterosexual and 6 homosexual) and half male (6 heterosexual and 6 homosexual). We compared the pattern of activity produced in their brains when they viewed the faces of their loved partners with that produced when they viewed the faces of friends of the same sex to whom they were romantically indifferent. The pattern of activation and de-activation was very similar in the brains of males and females, and HETEROSEXUALS AND HOMOSEXUALS. We could therefore detect NO DIFFERENCE in activation patterns between these groups.”

    PLoS One. 2010 Dec 31;5(12):e15802.
    “The brain reaction to viewing faces of opposite- and same-sex romantic partners.”

    In simplest terms, this means that the brains of homosexual men and women experience love for their partners in the same physiological way that the brains of heterosexual men and women experience love for their partners.

    The full article, listed by the US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, is available for the public at: http://dx.plos.org/ambra-doi-resolver/10.1371/journal.pone.0015802.

    No spin. No bias. No stealing language. No lies. No distortion of numbers. Just fact.

    This is what EVERYONE’S brain looks like (literally…there are pictures) when in love. We are fundamentally the same in how we LOVE (not lust) – gay or straight. If that’s true…then where does AndyP’s argument stand?

  41. Bryan says:

    How dare you! How dare you stand in judgement of this secular law that offers equality to so many who have been marginalized for so long. This does not impact you. You will not be forced to perform marriage ceremonies between two men or two women. This does not take away from the strength of your own marriage. You twist and manipulate god’s words to serve your own bigoted antiquated views. And, you do this all standing on a mountain of lies and deceit. You have no moral authority. You forfeited any that you may have had when you (the bishops) sold out our children to protect your own. Posters to this blog who talk about excommunicating politicians for their votes need to take a look at their own church leaders. Ask yourselves, how did they vote when it came time to protect our children. You talk about the harm that this law will have on our children, what about the harm our church has already inflicted upon them. Where was your outrage then? Where was your call for excommunication? You stand in righteous indignation of two consenting adults who want to commit to each other to share their lives together, yet you turned your back on the institutionalized evil that was forced upon our most vulnerable. Tell me about the difficulty you have explaining to your child why two men or two women love each other and we’ll see how that compares to explaining to a child why the man we trusted, we all looked to as a representative of God, felt it was his right to use that child and treat him like so much garbage; AND WHY the Church to which his entire family has been so devoted, thought that what happened to him was so meaningless and inconsequential that they sent that man out to “minister” to more and more children. Let us see which explanation is more challenging to deliver…shall we.

  42. Robert says:

    Will someone, anyone, tell me exactly what Jesus said about marriage? If you REALLY know your bible, you know he said nothing . . . nothing specific about marriage, let alone marriage between a man and a woman. Genesis does talk about marriage . . . and slaves and multiple wives . . . but Jesus says nothing. He just happens upon a marriage where he happens to produce a miracle. Read your bible, minister to the poor and the sick, love your neighbors and pray for your enemies . . . and leave the rest of humanity to deal with their own lives in their own ways.
    Amen

  43. BSBNickD says:

    In Reply to Donna Jorgenson Farrell:

    The problem with your question, is that the same gene that provides a benefit can also have an unintended consequence. For example, it’s already been demonstrated that women who have a specific gene that makes it easy for them to get pregnant and reproduce also tend to have more homosexual children. This is counter-intuitive, I know, because when I program a computer, I program one “object” to do one thing, but in our DNA, one “object” can do multiple things.

  44. Straight marriages produce gay kids, Gay agenda is to protect YOUR gay kids and their rights.
    This debate is about a paper with the law not with your/my or his/her God.

    All my family and relatives married and divorced a few times, us partners for happy 25 years show THIS is marriage, we only need the paperwork for legalities.

    Straight sex marriages are awesome I go to them and cry, but later I hear divorce and it sounds normal.

    Yes you will have gay kids, choose to love us. Our parents did.
    Hate the Church love the church goers.

  45. Tom Thimons says:

    Dear Archbishop,

    My Wife and I were happy to support traditional marriage at a rally in Albany this weekend. We hope that you continue to be a voice in support of traditional marriage as we pray this law is overturned.

    God Bless
    Tom and Annemarie Thimons

    http://capitalregion.ynn.com/content/top_stories/551094/hundreds-rally-to-repeal-same-sex-marriage/

  46. Henrietta says:

    I’m a straight 24-year-old, but I fully support my many gay/bisexual friends and all others like them. The idea that their relationships and desires are somehow inherently wrong or more unnatural, unworthy, invalid, harmful, dirty, or “sinful” than anyone else’s is not only abhorrent but completely illogical as well.

    Sexual orientation/preference has absolutely zero to do with values and morality, anyway. Being homosexual has no effect whatsoever on how good a person you are. What consenting adults do in private, whom they choose to be with, or whether their parts fit together perfectly or need a bit of help, is no concern of anybody else’s–and I’d certainly question the mentality of all those who are seemingly obsessed with what other people like to do behind closed doors.

    The ability to have a loving, committed gay relationship between consenting adults recognized by the law, and hopefully by whichever relevant religious or other establishments to which the partners might belong, is not so very much to ask. The precious heterosexual marriage institution (which, let’s face it, hasn’t the most stellar of track records anyway) is not TOUCHED or altered in ANY way, shape, or form by this. Expanding a definition does not have to involve changing the original content. “If you don’t like gay marriage, don’t get one.” Doesn’t get any simpler. There are plenty of things I don’t want, and would actually prefer that other people did not get either–but that doesn’t mean I can violate their rights to liberty and happiness by trying to tell them they can’t have those things. Ultimately, someone else’s business is someone else’s business.

    Indeed, distraction from ACTUAL issues that matter by creating problems and debates where they needn’t exist is the only explanation that holds water for something such as the anti-gay marriage “case.” I can argue in the most ridiculous circles with my family members over the topic, because there ARE no truly valid points on that side–it’s all feeling-based and senseless, absurd, unreasonable. Obviously, it can be difficult for mere mortals to accept something that just “doesn’t sit right” in one’s own head because it’s too different from what you consider “normal,” even though it harms no one and nothing and ultimately makes no real difference to YOU–standing pigheadedly in the way only hurts the people who want gay marriage. It does nothing to benefit the opposing side. Why this is even a big deal at all is utterly bizarre and baffling.

    Ultimately, all it boils down to are religious beliefs. BELIEFS. Not even facts. No one can provide a shred of evidence that God condemned homosexuality, or inspired the folks who wrote the Bible (a book with MANY translations and interpretations), or even exists at all. Of course it is all possible, but it’s also possible that a tiny flock of invisible, flying, rainbow-colored zebras live under my bed. (I’m not implying that there’s the same degree of probability involved in both scenarios, but hopefully you see the point.) All the passionate rhetoric in the world doesn’t make a claim true. HOW can one EVER consider using unproven, unsupported ideas to object to the allowance of something that will provide equal opportunities and happiness for millions…?? Agnostics and atheists are perfectly capable of arriving at the same basic moral principles needed for rich, fulfilling lives in thriving civilizations. Everyone who doesn’t subscribe to everything your faith says is not WRONG or misguided.

    I suppose that if the Church wants to be that way, then they have the right not to recognize things they don’t believe in…they’re founded on beliefs and faith, anyhow. Gay couples should most definitely be able to turn SOMEwhere to become legitimately united in the same sense that heterosexual ones can, if they so wish–with all of the benefits that accompany the ceremony.
    But trying to convey the message that homosexuals are “bad people” for acting upon their supposedly God-given feelings and pleasing themselves to no one else’s detriment, embracing who they are…that’s nothing short of sickening. Frankly, why a loving God would disapprove so strongly of homosexual behavior in the first place has never been sufficiently explained, and there’s no compelling reason to believe in an arbitrary, tyrannical god. Murder, theft, infidelity, bearing false witness, rape…some things I could understand being generally bad and undesirable. They have to do with the quality of one’s character, and they can do great harm to oneself and others. Being gay does not fit that description at all.

    The ludicrous, fear-mongering notion that society will degrade and all traditional social constructs will crumble if homosexuals are permitted to wed cracks me up like no other. How sad. A faith supposedly built upon the tenet of love for all people, heartlessly rejecting and ignoring the love of so many simply because the pair members happen to belong to the same biological sex. Isn’t love supposed to be a spiritual, magical sort of emotion, capable of transcending something as simple and physical as sex? This makes no sense and seems blatantly hypocritical. The welfare of a society is HARDLY dependent upon 100% of the people being heterosexual, marrying, and reproducing. In fact, that path is undesirable and leadeth to even more severe overpopulation (which is a HUUUGE problem, so why in the world is anyone focusing on gay marriage of all things?!?) There will almost certainly always be more heterosexuals than homosexuals; that does not make it right to deprive them of things they deserve via rules rooted in mere personal beliefs. Society used to justify the “moral rightness” of discrimination, subjugation, and persecution based upon other factors (such as race…) as well.

    Every gay couple who wishes to adopt is a blessing of sorts. Any child ought to be presented with facts and allowed to make up his or her own mind. Attempts to brainwash me into believing that homosexuality is disgusting or wrong failed. There is no reason to suspect that kids will become “confused” in the future when presented with the idea that a gay relationship can be just as beautiful and caring as a straight one. They’d be unlikely to develop much differently, either; a positive effect could even be an increased likelihood to discuss and explore such matters as sexuality and personal identity more openly, truthfully, and with less shame and fear than is and has been common. Bottom line is, being around gay people doesn’t turn a you gay any more than being around tall people makes you tall.

    So I just can’t stand the religious justifications for this nonsense. Judging simply from the rude, un-Christ-like behavior that can be observed in church parking lots on Sunday mornings, by people who were inside minutes ago singing the praises of their Lord and promising to more closely emulate his goodness in the world, it’s OBVIOUS that religion–or the profession of religion–has effectively VERY little to do with a person’s actual moral values and practices. The legalization of gay marriage is sooo not going to flush the world any further down the toilet than it already is, okay?