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  1. “since I’ve never really felt the need to appeal to the government for validation (let alone validation of my personal relationships”
    Since you airily start off by utterly ignoring the very real effects of lack of access to rights and benefits straight couples have access to that we don’t, it’s hard to take this seriously.
    The “list of “1,138 federal benefits, rights, and protections granted on the basis of marital status.” This is a canard…” What makes it a canard other than your desire to ignore it? When a women can’t get insurance for her spouse, when a guy can’t add his partner’s child to his insurance, etc etc. – these are real world injustices, real harms done to gay couples. You can’t dismiss the long, long list of ways that gay couples get the shaft wrt/laws and financial benefits just because you personally don’t care about those things.

    You’re right that list of federal benefits denied to gays causes anger, though – unequal treatment under the law has that effect on some people. YMMV.

    Comment by hmm_contrib — December 10, 2012 @ 8:03 pm - December 10, 2012

  2. I think the reality is that this issue is two things.

    1. The various government goodies for heterosexual couples that come with being married-from taxes to having the next of kin decisions about healthcare for an incapacitated spouse. Gay couples can get some of these things but they have to jump through more hoops to get them-that heterosexual couples don’t.

    All of these problems can easily be solved through legislation that recognizes civil unions rather than marriages.

    2. The desire for the label of marriage-and generally I go with the label-because all too often I am unconvinced that everyone advocating gay marriage wants and respects the institution, they just think that a civil union is somehow relegating them to second class citizenship or something.

    I am married and heterosexual, and admit I don’t have particularly strong opinions either way-at least not to where I would vote it as a single issue.

    I am perfectly fine with gays getting married although my hope is that their desire is for the institution and not a way to stick it in the eye of those who believe the institution is for heterosexuals (or in reality the religious conservative who may feel strongly on the issue of marriage).

    I will also point out that if the government decided tomorrow it was going to no longer recognize any kind of marriage relationship, I wouldn’t feel less married or feel like the government was picking on me. My marriage isn’t about the government goodies, but the promises and commitments my husband and I made before our God, family and friends. My marriage is about the institution not about whether the government recognizes it.

    I wish gays who want marriage and not civil unions would focus more on why they want the institution ad respect the institution when they make arguments in favor. I actually think that message is far more resonant with people than a “the government is being mean to me, and won’t let me marry whoever I want to” argument.

    Comment by Just Me — December 10, 2012 @ 8:16 pm - December 10, 2012

  3. A true libertarian would say no marriage benefits for anyone. No tax benefits for children none of that stuff.

    Comment by mike — December 10, 2012 @ 8:16 pm - December 10, 2012

  4. A true libertarian would say no marriage benefits for anyone. No tax benefits for children none of that stuff.

    This is probably true, although there is much about full blown libertarianism that makes me not actually fit that philosophy. I am generally a conservative with libertarian leanings.

    I actually think there are some good reasons to recognize marriage relationships and to provide some legal protections and tax breaks, although like I said before-if the government decided tomorrow it wasn’t going to recognize marriage anymore, I wouldn’t feel less married and it wouldn’t change how I view my marriage relationship with my husband.

    Comment by Just Me — December 10, 2012 @ 8:31 pm - December 10, 2012

  5. Funny they never say “1,138 federal benefits, rights, and protections *and responsibilities*”

    If your spouse is a tax cheat, you can be on the hook too. Bankruptcy is complicated and the spouse can’t always be protected. Vicarious liabilities are probably a state-level mine field.

    Save joint adoption and taxes, there’s really not much a two consenting adults cannot willfully enter into agreement for.

    The “insurance injustice” is the real canard. There are many ways to access coverage, usually by working for a company that provides the benefits you need. If the Obama economy makes that difficult, sorry, I tried to help

    Comment by BigJ — December 10, 2012 @ 8:48 pm - December 10, 2012

  6. Okay, I admit that I am biased by my experience with the LGBT community and am not able to let myself open up to the idea that LGBT people really give a wit about the institution and it’s traditions. I know through experience that the idea of “gay marriage” here in NYC was started by hard core leftists who hate(d) this country it’s traditions and institutions and those still alive from those days are still poking their fingers in the eyes of anyone that is not a clone of themselves.

    I supported the same “domestic partnership” for the LGBT community in my state that heterosexuals who aren’t religious and don’t give a wit about marriage find satisfactory. The finacials that were still lacking in this arraingement could have easilly been strengthened and would have garnered much support from heterosexuals with a mostly casual exposure to the LGBT community.

    But, my state passed “gay marriage” and now we are moving on to discussions of Polyamory to further strengthen the institution through even more diversity.

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 10, 2012 @ 9:45 pm - December 10, 2012

  7. No tax benefits for children none of that stuff.

    Look, I (think I) know that make at #3 is not saying what I am about to point out, but I hope mike @ #3 will consider this:

    The greatest tax benefit children get is a free public education. It costs ginormous amounts of money. They also get AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) tax benefits and WIC and Medicaid and on and on and on.

    Why? Well, according to Nancy Pelosi and Maxine Waters and Hillary Clintoon and a billion others, we tax ourselves to the hilt for the chilruns. Everything a Progressive wants is always wrapped around the chilruns.

    So what? Well, when you go about “promoting the general welfare ….. for ourselves and our posterity” you are dealing in terms of weighing a “compelling state interest.”

    The Supreme Court is very engaged in considering whether there is a compelling state interest in arriving at many of its decisions. (For instance, is there a compelling state interest in overturning marriage laws to permit gay marriage?)

    This nation has decided that the general welfare of the country is greatly enhanced by the state providing the children of the public and illegal aliens a state financed education that is free to the people. Furthermore, people who do not have children and never will are still taxed to send other people’s children to school. This is because the state “believes” that the benefits of an educated society pays back those taxes in myriad ways.

    Now, the libertarian might say that “free” school lunches and “free” bus rides and “free” schooling should be scrapped and each parent should make the choice about education. That is to say that the state should not impose itself on the child or the parent.

    Homeschooling has mushroomed across the land for a variety of reasons. But one reason in particular is whether sex-ed and all its permutations is a proper role of the public school. Do kids need to know about homosexual activities in a general reading, writing and arithmetic curriculum?

    Public schools have adopted many ways of assessing the value of curriculum and the outcome of learning other than achievement testing. In short, public schools have become an arm of the state propaganda machinery in which a kid wearing an I Love Jesus T-shirt is sent home to change.

    The state has become so embroiled in the judging and winnowing and promoting of political correctness that public education morphed into public relations many years ago.

    “No tax benefits for children none of that stuff” to a Progressive hardly means hands off the propaganda by the state. If anything, everything about the Progressive agenda is to put the state at the center of social justice and assuring rights and tending to victims and redistributing wealth and organizing the community and enacting change and fulfilling hope and deciding and enforcing the “fair share” rules and on and on and on.

    Finally, is there a compelling state interest in regulating marriage or promoting marriage or dealing with inheritance or deciding paternity or dividing property or anything related to what goes on inside of a house? Cannibalism, molesting children, child porn, NAMBLA, multiple spouses, beating each other, and all the rest of the stuff from rednecks in the trailer park or red necks like Eliot Spitzer in the penthouse just may not be worth the time and effort of the state.

    I hardly think this is true, but there are a sufficient number of moral relativists who show up here to make asking the basic questions relevant to the turd blossoms they post.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 10, 2012 @ 9:52 pm - December 10, 2012

  8. Mr. Bell, you need to get out more and stop slandering people you haven’t bothered to get to know.

    The whole notion that LGBT people are some monolith who all think and act exactly alike, believe alike, etc. is a leftist myth. If you buy into it, then you are no conservative.

    I wonder if you’ve bothered to poll every gay or lesbian in your entire state to find out if he or she supports “moving on to discussions of Polyamory.” As I don’t know a single (or married) gay or lesbian in MY state who’d support such a thing, I have to believe you either live in whacko-land, or are simply content to be guided by what you prefer to think.

    The way people are in New York is hardly an indicator of how they are elsewhere. I live in Arizona, and you might as well be talking about the moon. If you blindly assume everywhere is just like where you are, then you are an ignoramus.’

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 10, 2012 @ 9:56 pm - December 10, 2012

  9. Actually, Lori, I do live in wacko land.

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 10, 2012 @ 10:02 pm - December 10, 2012

  10. Richard, if the only straight people I knew were New Yorkers, I wouldn’t have a very good opinion of most of them, to be honest with you. Though there are exceptions, an awful lot of them are pushy, belligerent and just plain rude.

    Their ungracious and unsportsmanlike behavior during the 2001 World Series is a typical example. They behaved as if the Diamondbacks should have simply handed them the Series because — don’t you know — 9-11 happened “to them.” Not to the rest of the country, but simply to them.

    I still wouldn’t judge all straights, however, by the way many of them are in New York. There must be something about the place that tends to make people obnoxious.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 10, 2012 @ 10:18 pm - December 10, 2012

  11. At least I have “gay patriot blog” to gain another perspective, Lori. ;)

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 10, 2012 @ 10:31 pm - December 10, 2012

  12. I think there are a couple of reasons why people are so against same sex marriage. First of all, for many, it is a religious issue. That group believes that marriage is a religious ritual that is denied homosexuals and to allow that somehow diminishes the institution of marriage itself and therefore chips away at one of the foundations of their religious beliefs. Once you start chipping away at those, it then just because a matter of degree. If in this generation one of those founding principles gets tossed out, the next generation another, and in a few hundred years, there’s nothing left of the religion or the cultural traditions surrounding family (in their minds). So this group sees it as the start of a slope to oblivion. This group would see no problem with civil unions with all the same legal rights conveyed by the institution of marriage, they just don’t want that called marriage. This also raises a whole bunch of issues concerning family names, inheritance, issues concerning children of same sex couples, etc. that are current set by tradition based on religious convention in Western culture.

    Even the whole concept of monogamy was simply set by a pope who got tired of sorting out inheritance spats with families having multiple wives. Over most of human civilization, polygamy is the norm for most cultures. Even in the Roman culture where one had only one official wife, pleasures of the flesh with a slave were permitted and even homosexual sex was rather common. It just wasn’t sanctioned by the institution of marriage because there was no biological line of heirs (family line spanning centuries) that could spring from it. Marriage was more of a joining of two families. In fact, in many cultures formal marriage in a church was limited to the upper classes. The peasants generally had what we would today describe as “common law” marriage and since they owned no real property, inheritance was of no consequence. Basically, serfs shacked up until one of them died, on average within 5 to 10 years of pairing up.

    We are talking about traditions that were formed when 85% of the population did not survive beyond 35 years of age and the vast majority of the population was under 20 years old. These traditions also formed in an age where younger members of the family were expected to care for the aged and failure to produce offspring generally meant a shorter life than someone who did. An interesting statistic is that even though people live much longer today than they did in Roman times, the average duration of a marriage is about the same, 10 – 11 years.

    There is, I think, a second group who want (demand, actually) that there be SOME cultural consequence from being homosexual and that allowing homosexual marriage eliminates what amounts to the very last barrier that separates them from everyone else. These people aren’t much different than the liberals who simply want to extract a pound of flesh from “the rich”. Some people just want to impose some cultural punishment, some separation between homosexuals and heterosexuals.

    Both of these groups have very strong feelings on the issue and arguments of logic are not likely to sway them. They simply believe what they believe, feel what they feel, and I guess we just have to wait until most people are ok with it. Like most of our cultural traditions in our country, we are talking about traditions that have come about in only the past 1500 years of human history. Homosexual sex was seen as a recreational diversion in many cultures but was never considered as so serious a thing as to warrant disrupting the entire culture over.

    There is a third, more cynical reason. The number of divorces is dropping as both the rate of marriage declines and the divorce rate among those married declines. The number of divorces peaked in 1994 at 1,191,000. The divorce rate peaked in 1992 at 0.48%. By 2005 it had declined to 0.36%. Divorce is not a growth industry. Allowing same sex marriage could boost divorces and bring in more cash for those lawyers.

    Comment by crosspatch — December 10, 2012 @ 11:10 pm - December 10, 2012

  13. You’re right that list of federal benefits denied to gays causes anger, though – unequal treatment under the law has that effect on some people. YMMV.

    Comment by hmm_contrib — December 10, 2012 @ 8:03 pm – December 10, 2012

    Not really.

    Insurance issues are covered by insurance law, tax issues are covered by tax law, etc.

    If you wanted them changed, you would have been asking for THOSE laws to be changed. And they could be easily changed — if the Obama Party to whose ass you’ve permanently affixed your lips wasn’t desperate to soak everyone for every last dime so that Michelle Obama doesn’t have to pay for her $4 million Hawaiian vacation, and thus adamantly opposed to doing anything but RAISING taxes.

    Classic example: the gays whining about the estate tax, then endorsing and supporting the Obama Party that wants it hiked.

    Frankly put, “hmm_contrib”, you don’t care about any of these things. That’s just a lie you pull to make your whining and screaming about gay marriage seem like less of a selfish and narcissistic play than it is.

    Your relationship doesn’t benefit society. Get that through your thick head. You cost society money. You are not going to reproduce, not going to produce a next generation, not going to do anything other than consume, consume, consume.

    There are no helpless children who need support at stake in your relationships — only two adults who want to be helpless and live off other peoples’ work. You don’t add anything to society; the best you could manage is to not get HIV-positive and end up on the taxpayer dole, and you and your fellow bigot gays have made clear that you’re wholly incompetent at doing even that little.

    There. Is. No. More. Money. Grow up. Save it for the opposite-sex couples whose children you will ultimately need to take care of you.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — December 10, 2012 @ 11:15 pm - December 10, 2012

  14. http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/joyful-declarations-of-love-from-newlyweds-in-seat?s=mobile

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 12:28 am - December 11, 2012

  15. Great post Nick

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 12:34 am - December 11, 2012

  16. First of all, for many, it is a religious issue. [...] This group would see no problem with civil unions with all the same legal rights conveyed by the institution of marriage, they just don’t want that called marriage.

    This is only true in a fraction of those people who are opposed to same-gender marriage because of a religious value objection. Two observations—one anecdotal, one factual.

    When my state legislature last tackled the proactive bills for marriage expansion and civil unions, the testimony in the committee they were assigned to (with combined testimony in one hearing) rarely brought out the point that the speaker was fine with civil unions and just opposed to same-gender marriage. Indeed, most of the testimony was in opposition to marriage expansion as well as civil unions, with the reason given that civil unions are just “fake marriages” anyway.

    The last part of the previous sentence is exactly the official point of view of the Roman Catholic Church (as well as other institutions).

    I’d say that the people who are against marriage but okay with civil unions are less religious and just more traditional.

    Comment by RSG — December 11, 2012 @ 5:10 am - December 11, 2012

  17. It depends RSG, I’m pretty religious, but support ‘Fred’ and not changing marriage.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 11, 2012 @ 7:56 am - December 11, 2012

  18. ‘i know through experience that the idea of “gay marriage” here in NYC was started by hard core leftists who hate(d) this country it’s traditions and institutions’

    Very true. The gay liberation front was a commie org hell bent on destroying the traditional family (a bourgeois concept)

    almost all politicians in Europe who are gay or are pushing for gay marriage are hard line leftists (a more polished word for commies since they are still talking about collectivism, common property, class warfare and all that crap) even in countries where the church has got little power.

    the majority of gay friendly ppl are currently being used as tools to advance the leftist agenda.

    Many gays are hardline leftists (77% voted for Obama is kind of shameful, kind of cargo cultists) and they are easily tricking the others into the whole leftist manifesto of pro abortion (not the typical gay problem), anti Israel (the only middle east country that does not kill gays), pro wild immigration (wanna see how many gay couples will relocate to dearnbornistan Michigan?).

    The term is “useful idiots”

    Comment by susan — December 11, 2012 @ 9:46 am - December 11, 2012

  19. I wish gays who want marriage and not civil unions would focus more on why they want the institution ad respect the institution when they make arguments in favor. I actually think that message is far more resonant with people than a “the government is being mean to me, and won’t let me marry whoever I want to” argument.

    So why do gays have to demonstrate, to your liking, their respect for the institution of marriage, while straight people don’t? Does that make any sense? When Britney Spears got married and divorced in a weekend, did you lament the disrespect she showed towards the institution of marriage, or did you not give a shit because she’s straight?

    Comment by Levi — December 11, 2012 @ 9:48 am - December 11, 2012

  20. Interesting piece at Legal Insurrection on influencing the court.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 11, 2012 @ 10:15 am - December 11, 2012

  21. #19 – “did you lament the disrespect she showed towards the institution of marriage”

    Yes.

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 11, 2012 @ 10:36 am - December 11, 2012

  22. Actually, Levi, if you went to Focus on the Family and other such sites, you would notice that they DO decry divorce and Hollywood marriages that don’t last as cheapening marriage.

    No such things exist on the gay-sex marriage websites. In fact, the gay-sex marriage bigots such as yourself praise Britney Spears and her ilk and promote that as what people should do.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — December 11, 2012 @ 11:12 am - December 11, 2012

  23. Levi others answered my opinion on the drive by marriages of straight couples. So I won’t go there.

    So why do gays have to demonstrate, to your liking, their respect for the institution of marriage, while straight people don’t?

    Actually this wasn’t really about gays demonstrating to me to my liking their desire for the institution, but more one where I think gays on the issue would go farther if they were arguing from a desire for the instution and not the government goodies.

    Straight couples-at least the ones who care about the institution of marriage-don’t view their marriages as marriages because the government approved, they view their marriages for the commitment and promises before their God and what it represents. For straight couples who care marriage is the institution and not government recognition.

    These couples would continue to marry and respect the institution whether the government was involved or not.

    Many of them question the motives of gay marriage advocates because their arguments generally are about the goodies (and lets face it they could easily get the goodies with civil unions) not about why they want the institution.

    My point is that if gays want to get married they will likely get more people to listen to and support their argument who are on the fence or opposed if they argue for why they want the institution and not the government goodies.

    Comment by Just Me — December 11, 2012 @ 11:53 am - December 11, 2012

  24. On a personal level I agree with Colorado Patriot. Marriage, civil unions some people seem to feel it is necessary. Last year or so on another blog dealing with the theme of this thread, I commented that I wasn´t as interested in gay marriage as I was in gay divorce. Somebody responded and said it was agood point, indicating that such a case had happened in Canada where they had legalized gay marriage. A couple filed for divorce after one year of marriage and the court was confused as to how to handle since in the passing the law no provision for gay divorce was made. When I was young I was a believer in true love and eternal happiness. Maybe I went looking in all the wrong places because I have had entered into more relationships and breakups than Mickey Rooney. As the this debate began I thought about divorce and all the alimony that I would probably have had to pay. Marriage or civil unions doesn´t confine compensation for separations. The late Liberace, or his estate, was sued by his ex-lover, Vince Cardell for palimony.

    Comment by Roberto — December 11, 2012 @ 12:23 pm - December 11, 2012

  25. My next door neighbors are a gay. They have been together for 29 years, longer than I’ve been alive. They both work at the university. In the event of one of their deaths, the survivor cannot enjoy the same benefits that my wife and I would in the same situation. Some of the benefits can be willed to the survivor, but others, like the Social Security and the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System benefits, cannot. Is that just? Is it fair that a couple who has been together for nearly 30 years do not enjoy the same benefits as two people who have been married for a week?

    Answer: It is not. I don’t care about the religious aspect of it, civil union vs marriage, I really don’t care. But if the government is granting special privelages to heterosexual couples, and not to gays, that is discrimination. All of the arguments that begin with, “marriage is a religious…” are not important. If couples get special recognition and benefits in the eyes of the government, the governemnt should not be able to discriminate against gay couples.

    Or is the religion clouding your judgement?

    Comment by Aaron — December 11, 2012 @ 12:48 pm - December 11, 2012

  26. As pointed out in the link at Big Lizards, a gay man has the same opportunities as a straight man to marry, Aaron. That’s not discriminatory. That two men (or two women) don’t meet the criteria to get government recognition of their partnership is no different than two men and two women.

    States are allowed to define the qualifications of marriage. It’s ‘settled law’ to use the popular term, that they can. (Which makes Washington’s law just as valid as California’s or Ohio’s constitutions) When asked what has changed since the case was decided, you’ve provided no legal evidence.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 11, 2012 @ 12:58 pm - December 11, 2012

  27. Answer to Aaron: It’s not really about morality, it’s about the money. It’s about the government goodies, paid for by other people’s taxes. Santa Claus for me, but not for thee. It’s about the goodies.

    Many, many people who decry “government redistribution of wealth,” it turns, out, are totally fine with it — as long as it flows into their own pockets.

    As for religious freedom — the other argument often used — that’s another stinking pile of B.S. Our Constitution protects ALL religious freedom, not merely that of the majoritarian view on any issue or doctrine. This was done for the very good reason that even the majority cannot be protected if the minority cannot — since any majority may someday become the minority.

    Government needs to be gotten the hell out of marriage. Just as our politicians need to stop playing Pope and arbiting whose faith ought to trump whose. THAT is the libertarian position on gay marriage, and on all marriage.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 1:14 pm - December 11, 2012

  28. @Lori,

    In an ideal world (yeah right) would you see states able to determine recognition of benefits, and the Federal Government ‘getting the hell out of Marriage’?

    It’s my understanding such a system would be constitutional.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 11, 2012 @ 1:33 pm - December 11, 2012

  29. Livewire, I’m afraid the populace has been too corrupted for even that to work. They’ll rifle our pockets with the help of the states, if they can’t turn the guns of the federal government on us.

    When a large quantity of loot is there to be grabbed, the feds will continue to find some excuse to be involved in it. All, of course, with an angelic-sounding purpose. Straight couples must be bribed to stay together, and they must roll every single taxpayer (gay and straight) in the nation in order to accomplish this. They’re “protecting the family” — don’t you know — by turning citizens against each other in a mad grapple for other people’s money. That they’re also helping themselves to ever-increasing power to interfere in the personal lives of others — even in their relationship with their God — we’re not supposed to notice.

    Pay no attention to the withered little bald guy behind the screen…

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 2:06 pm - December 11, 2012

  30. But if the government is granting special privelages to heterosexual couples, and not to gays, that is discrimination.

    But if the government is granting special privileges
    to heterosexual couples and gay couples, and not to polygamists with many spouses, that is discrimination.

    Sorry, but that platform won’t bear the weight.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 11, 2012 @ 2:32 pm - December 11, 2012

  31. heliotrope,
    There are 9 states plus DC that recognize gay marriages.

    Are there any states that legally recognize any polygamous relationships?

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 2:38 pm - December 11, 2012

  32. The problem with Libertarians is the lack of pragmatism; they would rather get into fistfights over who is the purer libertarian than broaden their coalition and achieve some political traction.

    It’s why I admire Rand Paul for breaking out of the Libertarian ghetto.

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 2:44 pm - December 11, 2012

  33. Why is there so much hate against polyamorous people?

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 2:45 pm - December 11, 2012

  34. They have been together for 29 years, longer than I’ve been alive. They both work at the university. In the event of one of their deaths, the survivor cannot enjoy the same benefits that my wife and I would in the same situation. Some of the benefits can be willed to the survivor, but others, like the Social Security and the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System benefits, cannot. Is that just? Is it fair that a couple who has been together for nearly 30 years do not enjoy the same benefits as two people who have been married for a week?

    Yup.

    Because, Aaron, if you were an intelligent person, you would know a few things about Social Security.

    1) The reason for survivor benefits is so that one spouse can work while the other stays home and takes care of children.

    2) The household limit for Social Security benefits is likely lower than the individual amount that each of them could receive would be; therefore, marriage would actually make their problem WORSE.

    3) All of this is set by law. There is nothing to prevent a change to pension or Social Security laws to not require marriage.

    And the hilarity is, silly Aaron, is that if you really wanted to change the law to allow non-spouses to inherit a Kansas pension and Social Security, you could, and I can tell you exactly how to do it.

    But you clearly don’t care about helping them, since you and your Obama Party won’t do that. Indeed, in your entire diatribe, the only thing you make clear is that your only interest in this couple is to use them to bash Christians. You don’t care about helping them, you don’t care about solutions, you just want to bash Christians.

    Why are you an insane bigot, Aaron? Why do you hate and loathe gay people so much that you use us as an excuse to carry out your hate and bigotry against Christians?

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — December 11, 2012 @ 2:49 pm - December 11, 2012

  35. Most western countries do not recognize polygamous marriages, and consider bigamy a crime. Several countries also prohibit people from living a polygamous lifestyle. This is the case in some states of the United States where the criminalization of a polygamous lifestyle originated as anti-Mormon laws, although they are rarely enforced.

    Opposition to Mormonism began before the first Latter Day Saint church was established in 1830 and continues to the present day. The most vocal and strident opposition occurred during the 19th century, particularly during the Utah War of the 1850s, and in the second half of the century when the practice of polygamy in Utah was widely considered by the U.S. Republican Party as one of the “twin relics of barbarism” along with slavery.

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 2:52 pm - December 11, 2012

  36. Are there any states that legally recognize any polygamous relationships?

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 2:38 pm – December 11, 2012

    LOL.

    There are 41 states that do NOT recognize gay-sex marriage, rusty, but you’re screaming and crying and demanding that the Constitution force them to do it anyway.

    And when the Massachusetts Supreme Court ordered gay-sex marriages to be performed, that was simply a lawsuit.

    So it’s very simple. All that is needed is one lawsuit, and the Obama Party is already filing it, with you and your fellow liberals insisting that restrictions on plural marriage are unconstitutional.

    So your lies are exposed. And you have no more standing.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — December 11, 2012 @ 2:57 pm - December 11, 2012

  37. And of course the good ol’ slippery slope argument must be invoked. It is always used to prop up the lame arguments of statists. Those who believe human beings must be pushed around and threatened by the Almighty State have nothing else, so they must resort to that.

    If two people are left the hell alone to share their own property as they choose, without being looted by straight couples, then pretty soon we’ll all be digging up dead people to marry and plighting our eternal troth to our tables and chairs…

    The one sticky problem is that the Left has its own convenient uses for slippery slope arguments. They use them all the time, and manage to fool as many people with them as does the social Right. One example — and only one — being that we must ban all handguns for personal protection because, don’t you know, pretty soon mass-murderers will be getting ahold of bazookas and going on rampages.

    One side will never be able to stop the other, because neither can resist resorting to this idiocy. Other people’s juicy boodle awaits, just to be taken by those who can devise a crafty-enough argument to seize it.

    They regard as ironclad and obvious six snippets of Scripture that may be lifted out of context to bilk gays out of our own hard-earned money. But “Thou shalt not steal,” they will deconstruct endlessly. Or, more likely, simply ignore.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 2:58 pm - December 11, 2012

  38. Why do gay marriage supporters hate polyamorous people? I mean, obviously, if you oppose redefining marriage to accommodate the preferences of a group of people, you’re a hate-filled bigot. Right?

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 2:58 pm - December 11, 2012

  39. And of course the good ol’ slippery slope argument must be invoked.

    Is the slippery slope argument illegitimate? Howso? Did the requirement for warning labels on cigarette packs *not* lead to banning of smoking in public places and the banning of transfats and 20 oz sodas? Did the ‘Equal Opportunity’ movement of the 1960′s *not* lead to affirmative action, quotas, and open discrimination against white males?

    Why is the slippery slope argument derided when it so often proves to be true?

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 3:04 pm - December 11, 2012

  40. @Lori,

    I understand what you’re saying. But in the original intent of Federalism, don’t you think the states should be allowed to define what they recognize?

    @rusty. 20 years ago no states recognized any form of SSM. So to argue that polygamy would never happen because no states recognize it now, is a dishonest argument.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 11, 2012 @ 3:16 pm - December 11, 2012

  41. Polygamy is practiced in quiet refuges in the SW. But as the dear Seanne Anna points out that veil has been lifted via Sister wives.

    Yes gay folk started out pushing for SSM, but as it is becoming quite clear, there are many folk supporting SSM, grandparents, parents, friends, extended family, clergy and religious folk along with many leaders from the corporate world

    And there is even a growing number of folk center right and on the right supporting SSM.

    Please show me the legislation to put polygamy up for a vote. There are groups out there that gather in support of polyamory, but not sure if there is even a groundswell of grassroots support.

    But back to the roots of the bigamy laws and the anti Mormon movement lead by the Republicans as they tied it to slavery. . .

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 3:28 pm - December 11, 2012

  42. Wait, is rusty saying the basic fundamental human right of marriage should be put to a vote? Wow, he must really, really hate polyamorous people.

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 3:33 pm - December 11, 2012

  43. (It’s kind of fun to mock people who are too dumb to realize they’re being mocked.)

    Comment by V the K — December 11, 2012 @ 3:33 pm - December 11, 2012

  44. Your relationship doesn’t benefit society….You cost society money. You are not going to reproduce, not going to produce a next generation, not going to do anything other than consume, consume, consume.

    I don’t believe that’s true. From a purely economic/resource perspective, my LTR does benefit society. It creates an economic unit that produces more than it consumes. This has economic benefits for everyone.

    From a reproductive, continue-the-species perspective, certainly there is partial truth to it. Because I will not reproduce within my relationship. That does not mean I cannot parent a child. Personally I won’t, because I have no desire to be a parent. (Never have, really.) However, as part of an extended family, I help raise nieces and nephews. That also benefits society.

    Whether or not one’s relationship costs society money (or imposes other costs) is entirely a calculus of behavior.

    Comment by Neptune — December 11, 2012 @ 3:39 pm - December 11, 2012

  45. #39 – Because in itself, the slippery slope argument is abused sufficiently often to curtail a deeper and more honest exploration of the subject. It also implies that we must not use our heads in dealing with the very possibilities that such an argument presents.

    We can’t draw the line on the possibilities we want to avoid if we’re unwilling to deal with the ones that might, by justice and right reason, be considered. The slippery slope is almost always invoked to perpetuate the very injustices its users claim they wish to avoid.

    #32 — As for the whole “libertarians are unrealistic” line, I can’t help but see how libertarians conveniently become un-pragmatic whenever somebody’s afraid their own ox might be gored.

    The situation is stark and simple when the looters and thieves want to get their hands on the take. But when a libertarian stands up and tells the plain and simple truth of the matter, laying it out in clear terms, he or she is “impractical.”

    #40 — Livewire, as for states’ rights, I’m all for them. I would love, for example, to get the feds to stop meddling with the ability of those in my own state, Arizona, to solve our own border issues. But I want that door shut both when its convenient for the Left and when it can be freely transgressed by the social Right.

    And what does the Tea Party have to say about consistency on this matter? Crickets…

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 3:40 pm - December 11, 2012

  46. Actually this wasn’t really about gays demonstrating to me to my liking their desire for the institution, but more one where I think gays on the issue would go farther if they were arguing from a desire for the instution and not the government goodies.

    These are both valid reasons and they’ve been offered a million times. If gays say they want to marry because they like the idea of marriage, conservatives come back and say that the institution just isn’t for them. If the gays back up and take another shot at it, arguing that if straight couples get benefits than so should they, conservatives say they should focus on their desire for the institution! This is called circular reasoning, and it’s the kind of fallacy that gay marriage opponents rely on exclusively.

    Straight couples-at least the ones who care about the institution of marriage-don’t view their marriages as marriages because the government approved, they view their marriages for the commitment and promises before their God and what it represents. For straight couples who care marriage is the institution and not government recognition.

    These couples would continue to marry and respect the institution whether the government was involved or not.

    This is actually totally backwards. You say that straight people don’t care about whether or not their marriages are recognized by the government. But that’s not really true, since the entire point of your argument is to continue government recognition of straight marriages while denying government recognition of gay marriages.

    Do you get that?

    If you follow your argument logically, what matters most to you is government recognition of your marriage. Like I said to another poster, the common refrain around here that gays are seeking validation is the complete inverse of reality – it’s conservatives who are demanding validation of the government!

    Many of them question the motives of gay marriage advocates because their arguments generally are about the goodies (and lets face it they could easily get the goodies with civil unions) not about why they want the institution.

    My point is that if gays want to get married they will likely get more people to listen to and support their argument who are on the fence or opposed if they argue for why they want the institution and not the government goodies.

    Well, it’s nice that you want to give advice, but if you hadn’t noticed, your side is getting absolutely crushed in this debate. Most Americans already appreciate and desire a good marriage, so they’d be spinning their wheels. The best appeal here is to basic human decency and fairness – that’s a far more convincing argument.

    Comment by Levi — December 11, 2012 @ 6:35 pm - December 11, 2012

  47. But if the government is granting special privileges
    to heterosexual couples and gay couples, and not to polygamists with many spouses, that is discrimination.

    Sorry, but that platform won’t bear the weight.

    Care to explain why the polygamists have not moved the needle on polygamous marriage in the near decade that gay marriage has been legal?

    I mean, it’s time to put up or shut up. If gay marriage were illegal everywhere in the world at this moment, it would still be stupid to say that legalizing gay marriage would lead to polygamy and incest and aardvark-on-zebra marriage, but it would be theoretically possible, I guess. I mean, we wouldn’t have any evidence in, right? We wouldn’t know what the consequences of legalizing gay marriage would be since it had never been done before.

    However! Gay marriage is now legal in… what, 10? 11 states? In some places in this country, it’s been legal for an entire decade. So let’s put your theory to the test, shall we? This is a concept you might not be familiar with, it’s called science, and we use it to make sure that crappy arguments aren’t hammered down people’s throats long after they’ve been discredited.

    A quick Google search reveals…

    WELL HEY! What do you know? There’s no polygamy anywhere in the country. There are no polygamous politicians, there are not polygamous political parties, there isn’t a polygamy lobby. In science, this is called proof, and it means your hypothesis is worthless. So why don’t you just lock it back up in whatever part of your brain controls stupidity?

    Comment by Levi — December 11, 2012 @ 6:47 pm - December 11, 2012

  48. “But that’s not really true, since the entire point of your argument is to continue government recognition of straight marriages while denying government recognition of gay marriages.”

    Which is true. And whatever quarrels others here may have with Levi, that is undeniable.

    Of course Levi will, again, be attacked for having said this. As, in all likelihood, will I, because I “sided with” him by affirming the obvious.

    What a useful role the statist Left plays for the statist Right — and vice versa. “Useful idiots,” indeed.

    But keep your eyes on which shell the pea is really under. It preserves the big-government, tax-and-spend status quo for the social Right and socialist Left to keep passing the power football back and forth, while keeping others — like libertarians — out of the game.

    I can’t wait for somebody here to call me a “leftist” again. Oh, joy. But again, remember the shell that conceals the pea. They can deal with a leftist, but with a libertarian they can do nothing but offer a few stale and warmed-over arguments that don’t wash.

    And we think social-Right statism is an effective means of dealing with the socialist Left…why? Because they refuse to deal with libertarians, preferring only to deal with social conservatives? This makes sense to WHOM?

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 6:52 pm - December 11, 2012

  49. The little fascist @ #46:

    Most Americans already appreciate and desire a good marriage

    and

    The best appeal here is to basic human decency and fairness

    and the little fascist @ #47:

    Care to explain why the polygamists have not moved the needle on polygamous marriage in the near decade that gay marriage has been legal?

    and

    If gay marriage were illegal everywhere in the world at this moment, it would still be stupid to say that legalizing gay marriage would lead to polygamy

    All this is pure, unadulterated BS gibberish.

    1.) Show me the data that “most” Americans “appreciate” and “desire” a “good” marriage. And the explain why the little fascist is forever crapping on hetero marriage for having high divorce rates as some sort of reason to permit gay marriage. Does the little fascist have any synapses that fire?

    2.) I would love to see the little fascist’s definition of “human decency” and his definition of “fairness.” As a fascist statist, he only thinks in terms of state applied sanctions to force the state definition of “human decency” as it accords with the needs of the state. State enforced “fairness” is exactly the same as negotiating with Obama. The state or dictator’s way or the highway or the firing squad or serfdom.

    3.) Polygamy is legal all over the world. It is an ancient marriage custom and tradition. Show me the history of gay marriage. Aaron said that denying gay marriage is discrimination. So, why, little fascist, is denying polygamy NOT discrimination of an equal and obvious kind? You can’t do it. No one can. There are growing numbers of Sharia oriented folks who are darned ready to ask the same questions. Yet the little fascist lacks the testicles to look them square in the eyes and say “yes” to gay marriage and “no” to Sharia and polygamy. The little fascist does not want to be dead Nick Berg or Danny Pearl style. The little fascist understands brute force just fine. That is why he is a statist.

    4.) It would be stupid to say that polygamy was the result of gays marrying and no one I have seen on this site has made that claim. It would be even stupider to claim that changing the basic and fundamental formula of marriage to accommodate two people of the same sex is somehow “different” from changing the basic and fundamental formula of marriage to accommodate one male and several wives or permutations thereof.

    Let us cut to the chase, shall we?

    Little fascist: What compelling state interest is involved in denying polygamy and why is denying polygamy not discrimination? Please feel free to be precise and intelligent.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 11, 2012 @ 7:22 pm - December 11, 2012

  50. Of course, all this governmental denying really involves the dispensation (or the withholding) of government goodies.

    Why not get the government out of the business of playing God altogether? Because straights still want it to be Santa Claus.

    Follow the money. That’s what it’s really all about.

    Of course they don’t want government redistributing wealth. Unless it’s funnelled into their pockets. Nor do they want government engaging in social engineering. Unless they themselves are directing it.

    Trees, take a step back and realize that you are part of the forest.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 7:28 pm - December 11, 2012

  51. Actually, Levi, “progressives” and the Barack Obama Party endorse plural marriage and insist that bans on polygamy and plural marriage are unconstitutional.

    That is evidence. You lose.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — December 11, 2012 @ 7:37 pm - December 11, 2012

  52. Conservative firebrand Glenn Beck has joined a growing chorus of Republican commentators in defending gay marriage, laying out a strong case for ending government opposition to letting same-sex couples wed.
    “Let me take the pro-gay marriage people and the religious people — I believe that there is a connecting dot there that nobody is looking at, and that’s the Constitution,” Beck said during a recent segment of his online talk show. “The question is not whether gay people should be married or not. The question is why is the government involved in our marriage?”
    While Beck’s defense of gay marriage may seem surprising, given his far-right political views and audience, it is actually not new. Earlier this year, Beck said that he has the “same opinion on gay marriage as President Barack Obama” and does not see same-sex unions as a “threat to America.”
    Still, Beck’s public renewal of his support for gay marriage comes at a politically significant moment for the GOP, which is working to reshape its message to appeal to a changing electorate. A Gallup survey released last week found that 53 percent of Americans are in favor of legalizing gay marriage, a number that has been steadily growing for the past decade.
    Moreover, by couching his support for gay marriage in a libertarian framework, Beck makes the case for the right to look past differences on social issues in order to broaden their coalition to include all limited government conservatives.

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/glenn-beck-defends-gay-marriage-video-2012-12#ixzz2EnI9dJ1g

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 7:45 pm - December 11, 2012

  53. Rusty, you bring up interesting information. Which will, of course, be ignored — except, very possibly, to attack you.

    Why should polygamists, polyamorists, lovers of dead people, buggers of small animals or people who want to marry their dining room sets be “recognized” or “not recognized?”

    Straight married couples are lining up at Santa’s magic throne, and they don’t want anybody else horning in.

    There should be NO line to Santa’s throne for tax breaks or other special benefits. (Remember “special rights?” Social conservatives supposedly don’t like them. Except, of course, when they do…)

    Get the straights out of line. Bust the line up. Then — guess what? — nobody else (including us awful, icky gays) will be there, either.

    Really, the hypocrisy and irrationality is nowhere more glaring than when the soc-cons put it on full display, during debates over gay marriage.

    I will not listen to another four years of bellyaching and soup grapes because Emperor O won reelection. If they soc-cons want to know why he did, they can stop bitching about “makers and takers” (the latter crowd being one to which many of them also belong) and take a long, good, hard gander in the nearest mirror.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 8:12 pm - December 11, 2012

  54. Or, they can spend another four years the way they did the last four — pontificating to Leftists about how government can supposedly do nothing right, then turning right around and expecting the same government to do their own bidding and give them treats.

    Worked really well the last time, didn’t it? So why not keep it up?

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 8:39 pm - December 11, 2012

  55. Lori I very much enjoy it when you stop by GP. I do follow your blogging.
    Gives me much to think about. :)

    Comment by rusty — December 11, 2012 @ 8:53 pm - December 11, 2012

  56. You do a great job of proving “libertarians” to be cowards, Lori.

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 11, 2012 @ 9:21 pm - December 11, 2012

  57. #56 — The fake ones, maybe. Real libertarians never cease to be amused at how conservatives pretend to be libertarians — while they’re out of power. And how, as soon as they get a Republican back into the White House, they turn into toadies and lickspittles again. It didn’t even take an election to do it, this time. The grovelling and hagiography directed at Mitt Romney was going full-barrel a long time before November rolled around.

    Once they no longer need us, they go back to calling libertarians dope-smoking hippies, pervert-lovers and every other dirty name in the book. Until the next time they need to convince the public that the abuse of power by big government is evil — which is to say, the next time they don’t have it, and want it back for themselves.

    Then they cozy up to libertarians again. We’re a cheap date.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 10:01 pm - December 11, 2012

  58. Romney? Please don’t make me have to go back in history on this blog to pull up posts by Conservatives mocking the establishment republicans here and predicting Romney would lose.

    I do admit to being attracted to the prospects of a cheap date in my earlier years and who could turn away from one with an enticing vocabulary but at least we Conservatives are not afraid to make judgements about what policies should specifically be instead of blurting it’s none of the gubmints business and running off into the sunset.

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 11, 2012 @ 10:27 pm - December 11, 2012

  59. But that’s not really true, since the entire point of your argument is to continue government recognition of straight marriages while denying government recognition of gay marriages.

    Levi just for the record what do you think my position on the issue happens to be?

    Comment by Just Me — December 11, 2012 @ 10:32 pm - December 11, 2012

  60. Running off into the sunset, Richard? Really!

    Ask me about any specific policy, and I’ll tell you exactly what I think the government’s should do about it. Go ahead. Make my day.

    If you’re going to strut around and play tough guy, bring it.

    All you’ve got, evidently, are more vague indictments of what *ALL* libertarians supposedly do. How convenient, that such an independent lot can be neatly stuck together like that.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 10:37 pm - December 11, 2012

  61. Also amusing is that those who voted for Romney are now all “establishment” Republicans. They can be blamed, while social cons get off scot-free.

    He may not have pandered to you as much as you’d have liked him to. And some of you thought he’d lose because of it, I’m sure. But come on…

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 11, 2012 @ 10:39 pm - December 11, 2012

  62. #60 – “If you’re going to strut around and play tough guy, bring it.”

    Projecting much?

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 11, 2012 @ 10:55 pm - December 11, 2012

  63. You know what’s interesting is that Glenn Beck has the same position as Nick and both the HuffingtonPost and Business Insider claim he is pro same-sex marriage.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/11/glenn-beck-gay-marriage_n_2277885.html?utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false
    http://www.businessinsider.com/glenn-beck-defends-gay-marriage-video-2012-12

    Comment by MV — December 11, 2012 @ 10:55 pm - December 11, 2012

  64. #62 — Richard, you’re so sweet. Thanks for the psychoanalysis. Your evasions, in general, are so charming.

    Now you’ve managed to steer the conversation to (A) who liked Romney and who didn’t, and (B) my psychological state.

    For the record, however, let’s reiterate. Those shells on the table are being shifted again, but I still know where the pea is.

    You believe in what essentially amounts to armed robbery, under a legal fiction. As long as only heterosexual married couples are permitted to practice it. Once gays get into the act, then — and in your opinion only then — it becomes morally objectionable.

    I, on the other hand, do not believe the tax code should be rigged in favor of some people and against others for the purposes of social engineering and wealth-redistribution. Not for the sake of “protecting marriage” — which I do not believe needs to be done by bribing straight couples to stay together (a strategy that certainly hasn’t worked very well) — or for any other reason. And not in ways that benefit any particular group, be they straight, gay or whatever.

    If you would like my libertarian opinion on any other issue, just ask. I have no intention of running off into the sunset.

    And I hope that’s plain enough for you.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 12, 2012 @ 2:19 am - December 12, 2012

  65. “The best appeal here is to basic human decency and fairness”
     
     
     
    Decency and fairness would be extending survival benefits to children rather than the spouse. There is no greater love than the one from a parent to his child.
     
     
    If you don’t believe that you are a low life hater.

    Comment by susan — December 12, 2012 @ 3:36 am - December 12, 2012

  66. Lori has the right idea about how the gays are being discriminated against, I just don’t like her pure libertarian approach. She keeps calling the beneifts that married couples get handouts from the government, which isn’t true. The pension plans and Social Security benefits that I mentioned in #25 are paid for throughout someones career. If they are not alive to collect those benefits that they have been contributing to for their entire working life, and are straight, then the government gives them the option to pass the benefits to their spouse. But only if they are straight. This is not collecting government handouts, it’s being able to draw from your dead spouses savings account.

    In order to not discriminate against people, you have to either do what Lori wants which is to revoke those privelages for everyone, or extend them to everyone, including gays and polygamists and whatever other weird group that wants them. With polygamy it becomes a little awkward because the benefits are structured to be given to one spouse, not several, but whatever, I’m sure they can work something out. It is BS that polygamy isn’t legal. If a group of adult women all want to marry the same man, the government should let them! Or if a bunch of men all want to marry the same woman, go ahead. It doesn’t matter. The government needs to quit formally recognizing the majority (straight couples), rejecting the minorities (gay couples), and outlawing the margins (polygamy).

    Comment by Aaron — December 12, 2012 @ 9:37 am - December 12, 2012

  67. Lori @ #64,

    I have strong libertarian beliefs, but I am put off by the recurring problem that the self identified libertarians (who knows if they actually are?) tend to get into Star Wars bar scene fights over who is the most virgin libertarian of them all.

    Lets assume that the state walks away from marriage and the tax benefits bestowed on the married folks and anything resembling state approval or disapproval of marriage. Marriage is entirely a private act which is of no interest to the state. What happens to the body of law dealing with property and inheritance?

    From the strict libertarian view, does a child have any standing with the state to be protected by the state from abuse by adults? Or is the strict libertarian picture something more like the views we see in Hogarth’s London?

    I favor traditional marriage and oppose gay marriage, but believe that civil union contracts are both necessary and proper. Be that as it may, I also know that all government is repressive and that the least little law of government takes away and restricts freedom. By law, you can not ride your motorcycle on the sidewalk.

    My other question about being a true-blue libertarian is how does that person separate the libertarian belief from anarchy?

    As a conservative, I want government to be as small as practical and get out of my life as much as possible. However, I also believe that a small town can agree to spend some of its tax resources on helping out with shelters for battered women because of a general, moral sense that women should not be battered. I suppose there are libertarians who would say “screw the battered women” it is no skin off my nose.

    Therein lies my confusion. Where are the limits to being libertarian and who defines them? Each individual libertarian? Hence the reference to the Star Wars bar scene.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 12, 2012 @ 9:55 am - December 12, 2012

  68. Aaron,

    You write: In order to not discriminate against people,…..

    The modern world has taught you something very confusing to you and I believe you think on it a bit. It is just fine to discriminate. It is a very good thing.

    You have been taught that to discriminate is to “show prejudice” in a way that makes you a “bigot” or a “segregationist” or a “biased judge” or a “hater.” It can be that.

    But to discriminate is also to perceive, to discover, to determine, to separate, to “get the picture,” to discern, to recognize, to diagnose, to appreciate, to comprehend, to learn, and much more.

    You step off the bus in NYC and a person approaches you and reaches for your luggage. He has a “furtive” countenance. You can not discern whether he is an employee of the terminal or some sort of hustler. You act on instinct. You discriminate. And you should.

    Perhaps you oppose NAMBLA and you do not want men to be able to love and marry little boys. Your discrimination is based on some sort of internalized “yuck” and “ice” factor. It is personal. It keeps you from hanging out with militant NAMBLA members.

    We all have quirks in our belief and value systems. But, there are many times when they come together and a majority of people decide to unite their common perceptions and make an act illegal. Is it discrimination? Yes. Is it therefore an act of evil? No.

    Think about it. The word was high-jacked in the 60′s by demagoguing it in a way that has left many starved of the richness of the language and much that underlies the complexity of critical thinking. One can not take bumper sticker definitions and philosophy and be very articulate.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 12, 2012 @ 10:14 am - December 12, 2012

  69. Decency and fairness would be extending survival benefits to children rather than the spouse. There is no greater love than the one from a parent to his child.

    If you don’t believe that you are a low life hater.

    Well that just seems to make all sorts of invalid assumptions. Like the spouse isn’t fit to decide how to raise the kids and use the benefits. Taken to it’s logical conclusion, this assertion would also mean a parent shouldn’t be able to leave any inheritance to his or her spouse. That whole argument just assumes one should choose children over spouse for survivorship issues, as if the two are totally independent of one another.

    Shouldn’t the default be an assumption that the children are those of the surviving spouse? That’s the way the law is structured now. That current paradigm further assumes that the surviving parent is the best person to decide how to raise those children. Otherwise the benefits go to the children, and then who is responsible? Must a trust be set up? It would seem so for minor children. And who decides whether the trustee (who we would normally assume would be the surviving parent) is acting in the best interests of those children? The State? Would DYFS / CPS / insert-child-services-acronym-here have that power? God I hope not.

    Comment by Neptune — December 12, 2012 @ 11:10 am - December 12, 2012

  70. Two excellent posts by Heliotrope summing up my feelings much better than I can.

    Comment by The_Livewire — December 12, 2012 @ 11:30 am - December 12, 2012

  71. #64 – Lori “You believe in what essentially amounts to armed robbery, under a legal fiction. As long as only heterosexual married couples are permitted to practice it. Once gays get into the act, then — and in your opinion only then — it becomes morally objectionable.

    I, on the other hand, do not believe the tax code should be rigged in favor of some people and against others for the purposes of social engineering and wealth-redistribution. Not for the sake of “protecting marriage” — which I do not believe needs to be done by bribing straight couples to stay together (a strategy that certainly hasn’t worked very well) — or for any other reason. And not in ways that benefit any particular group, be they straight, gay or whatever.

    I think you’ve confused me with another poster, dear. What I did post was, “#6 – I supported the same “domestic partnership” for the LGBT community in my state that heterosexuals who aren’t religious and don’t give a wit about marriage find satisfactory. The finacials that were still lacking in this arraingement could have easilly been strengthened and would have garnered much support from heterosexuals with a mostly casual exposure to the LGBT community.”

    Comment by Richard Bell — December 12, 2012 @ 12:41 pm - December 12, 2012

  72. Heliotrope, your wonderful Star Wars imagery aside, puh-leeze. Enough of the distortions of those dastardly pure libertarians.

    Protecting children’s interests does NOT need to involve the government confiscation, at gunpoint, of their parents’ money. It does not necessitate the State’s choosing who it likes and who it doesn’t and arrogating for itself the private property of the citizens it has decided it does not like.

    Taxation — punitive, with regard to those of whom the State has chosen to disapprove, so it may reward those it likes — is at the heart of my opinions about the government picking winners and losers WITH OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY.

    If you truly knew anything about libertarianism at all, you would know that. It isn’t that hard to find out what libertarians believe, or to clear up misconceptions about what we don’t. Come one. This is the information age.

    You are generally a gentle and very kind person, and I appreciate your ongoing presence on this blog. I really do. But advocates of this let’s-pick-winners-and-losers, nanny-government approach to marriage law have so befogged the public debate that even intelligent people like you are falling for their propaganda.

    Of course laws must be in place to protect the safety and interests of children. This need not be done by giving the government power to confiscate their parents’ money, willy-nilly, according to political whim. I would welcome an honest discussion, here, of how that might constructively be accomplished. What I find most unwelcome is a perpetuation of propaganda that — Islamist terrorist-style — holds up children like a human shield.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 12, 2012 @ 12:43 pm - December 12, 2012

  73. And Richard, I have no problem with the positive aspects of what you support. I am still talking about the same thing, which is taxation. I object to the State’s taxation of different groups of people at different rates, based upon politicians’ whims. I reject the notion of a spoils system, administered by the State, in its ongoing attempts to meddle in its citizens’ lives.

    And Aaron, you and I will simply have to agree to disagree on the idea that letting even more people onto the government-driven gravy train is a good idea. I object to the notion that the government — whose job it is to protect EVERYBODY from armed robbery — has elected to participate in it. I don’t aspire to partake of the spoils.

    People have repeatedly (on other posts) attempted to mischaracterize my opinions on this issue. They are accustomed to tossing about terms like “gay marriage” without being specific in how they define what it means. I have defined it here according to my actual convictions on the matter.

    I don’t expect that more distortions will not occur, but there it is.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 12, 2012 @ 12:51 pm - December 12, 2012

  74. Lori,

    Thanks for the response. I am thinking that you are not too eager to deal with nonsense that defies common sense. But separating nonsense from common sense is the conundrum that leads to ulcers and silly stuff from the Peanut Gallery.

    I have tried to get a handle on the motivations and aspirations of the Ron Paulians, the old Roger McBride crowd, the Bob Barr followers, those who attempt to distill the writings of Eric Hoffer to a schemata, the Ayn Rand acolytes, the remnants of the Lyndon LaRouche efforts, and the Ludwig von Mises Institute in particular.

    I would love to see a true Libertarian Party, but every time one begins to gel, we are treated to some moon bat crazy stuff that is the equivalent of Fred Phelps and the Westboro crowd challenging Pope Benedict to a doxology duel.

    I am not attempting to demean the libertarian concept. I am trying to get a handle on how to encapsulate it in a manageable form from which others can become informed and the movement can grow.

    My problem is that I do not want to tolerate idiots roaming around with meth addicted minds and the concomitant actions of such a mind. It they want to stay in their houses or trailers or up in their trees and burn brain cells, I can live with that. But when they clutter up my life, I lose all sense of caring about them.

    That is an example, not the core of my frustration. I just can not get a firm grasp on what constitutes “reasonable” state power in a libertarian world.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 12, 2012 @ 1:23 pm - December 12, 2012

  75. Heliotrope, there are definitely a lot of nuts out there. Anybody can use a word without understanding what it means, even to define themselves, and nuts will (perhaps naturally, since they’re nuts) use words without understanding what they mean, or try to make them mean what, to reasonable people, they do not mean.

    A Google search of “libertarian” will likely bring up all sorts of crazy crap. There are lots of people out there, saying lots and lots of things.

    A libertarian concept of the role of the State is one in which it protects its citizens from force or fraud. Period. It does not do a whole lot else. I know that may be a very general definition, but it’s the best one of actual libertarian theory on the matter.

    We do not believe this means that nothing else worth doing will get done. It only means we don’t believe it is the government’s proper job to do it. We believe that citizens are capable of doing anything else that needs to be done, and in ways far more efficiently (and probably less expensively) than the government would do it.

    There’s a common misconception here (I think of people like Seane Anna) that if someone like me says the government shouldn’t do it, we mean it is not important and that NOBODY should do it. This raises the State the cult-like status of divinity. Things are only real, to such people, if the government does them.

    Then they accuse gays of hungering after validation from the government. Which is rather like the pot calling the kettle black, or an ice cube calling snow cold.

    An interesting side-note is the way many people here (I think of Richard) blithely persist in believing that all gays, and all straight people supportive of gay rights, are non-religious. In fact, a great many of us are indeed people of religious faith. We simply interpret Scripture differently than do people like Richard. It seems to me that a secure sense of one’s own convictions need not necessitate a denial that those who disagree with those convictions even exist. To wish us out of existence seems, to me, a sign of insecurity.

    Aaron is absolutely right that the law should treat all its citizens equally. But if it taxes different people at different rates according to political whim, there is no justice in that. Nor has it any business playing pick-and-choose with whose interpretation of holy writ is valid and whose is not.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 12, 2012 @ 1:45 pm - December 12, 2012

  76. Just for fun Lori

    http://i1124.photobucket.com/albums/l569/rusty98119/6dde1e0ad9fcd3a8c960ca3a4a49d2f1.jpg

    Comment by rusty — December 12, 2012 @ 3:14 pm - December 12, 2012

  77. Rusty, a “get-along” shirt does seem like a good idea.

    Comment by Lori Heine — December 12, 2012 @ 3:31 pm - December 12, 2012

  78. That current paradigm further assumes that the surviving parent is the best person to decide how to raise those children. Otherwise the benefits go to the children, and then who is responsible? Must a trust be set up? It would seem so for minor children. And who decides whether the trustee (who we would normally assume would be the surviving parent) is acting in the best interests of those children? The State? Would DYFS / CPS / insert-child-services-acronym-here have that power? God I hope not.

    Ever hear of a guardian ad litem? They already exist to protect the child/ren in cases where no competent parental guardian is evident. It could be said that that safety valve would be better extended to other situations. And, it need not even be a ward of the state, but someone who is not in direct legal succession—but cares deeply enough—to automatically assume the role.

    True story: an acquaintance of mine had a brother and a wife with two birth children, born almost a decade apart. Both salt-of-the-earth types who got along great with their kids and close relatives. Brother’s wife contracts cancer, and dies, leaving younger child as a surviving minor. Brother becomes despondent after her death, makes stupid decisions, and connects with a drug-abusing user whom he takes to be his second wife. Not too long thereafter, brother contracts another form of fatal disease and also dies, leaving his younger child in the ‘care’ of the drug-abusing stepmom. She can barely take care of herself, yet claims to want to parent youngest surviving child ‘Drew’. My acquaintance and his wife (uncle and aunt-by-marriage) want to adopt Drew and take him into their loving home, but stepmom wants nothing of it, since that means her gravy-train-by-legal-succession will come to an end. According to the law of the state brother & wives lived in, the best interests of the child are the overriding concern, and it only takes a state social worker or two to say that, well, of course it is in the surviving minor child’s best interest to stay in the only physical home he has ever known, even if it is with a stepmother he barely knows.

    Long story shorter, uncle & wife expend close to $100,000 in expenses in order to legally adopt Drew, get loser stepmom out of the picture, and have him become their de facto second son and live with them in a neighboring state with family who love him—where he is today a successful high school junior.

    So here is a perfect case where marriage law actually does more to harm a family than help. If benefits would pass automatically from surviving parent to child upon death, then a good many of the children would be better off and there would be less golddiggers to leech off of unsuspecting marks.

    Comment by RSG — December 13, 2012 @ 2:30 am - December 13, 2012

  79. Levi just for the record what do you think my position on the issue happens to be?

    You said you didn’t care.

    But then, you accused gays of only wanting goodies, then you accused them of not respecting the institution of marriage, then you accused them of only wanting to poke Christians in the eye. Which means you care enough to let some absurd propaganda creep into your thinking, at the very least.

    You said that gays were whining about the government being mean to them…. isn’t that something that a truly conservative individual should get upset about?Aren’t you guys supposed to just hate how the government is always getting in people’s way and giving them special rules? But here you are dismissing the gays’ complaints as childish and overly sensitive. Well then, so much for consistency, I guess?

    Comment by Levi — December 13, 2012 @ 9:59 am - December 13, 2012

  80. The little fascist does it again (for the 4,387th time):

    You said that gays were whining about the government being mean to them…. isn’t that something that a truly conservative individual should get upset about?

    Anyone who whines about the government being “mean” to them, according to the little fascist ……. is something that a truly conservative individual should be upset about!

    What? (1.) Be upset because somebody is whining? Or, (2.) upset because the government is being mean?

    As to (1.) we conservative support the freedom of speech and the right to petition the government for a redress of grievances. So, it can’t be #1.

    But, in the case of #2, we miss the part where was the adjudication settled that the government was actually being “mean” to the whiner. Why should a truly conservative or libertarian or liberal individual get upset about somebody claiming the government is being “mean” to him. Let him have his day in court and we will all hear him out and a decision will be rendered. No truly conservative person or liberal person or libertarian person is required to get upset about anything that is on track to be adjudicated.

    So the premise is a conclusion and once again the little fascist goes skipping off down Diatribe and Dribble lane doing his imbecile rant.

    The poor little fascist loves to pretend that he has logic and common sense on his side. He is just like the wino bashing his grocery cart into a parking meter and demanding it move out of his way. There is a certain similarity to logic in his reasoning, except there really isn’t.

    Comment by heliotrope — December 13, 2012 @ 1:28 pm - December 13, 2012

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