Can I object to same-sex marriage and not be a bigot?

I ask this in all seriousness.  Like everyone else, I have members of my family who identify as gay or lesbian.  I work with homosexuals.  And I have homosexuals who I consider friends.  Save for my co-workers, all the gay people in my life know my religious convictions and political views.  None of them believe I hate gay people, think they are second-class citizens, or that they’re icky, yet they all know I oppose same-sex marriage.  However, in this setting, where I share my views on religious, political, and social issues, it seems that people believe if I oppose same-sex marriage, I hate gay people and I’m obviously an intolerant bigot.

Is it possible for a person to have principled moral objections to same-sex marriage and/or same-sex sexual relationships and not be hateful and bigoted?

I’m really not sure proponents of same-sex marriage and gay activists believe this is possible.  Sure, many might say it is possible.  Of course you can have objections, they reassure.  But this concession seems to come with an unspoken caveat: you can have your objections, but just know you’re wrong and don’t dare think you’re right, because if you do, then you’re a hateful bigot.

I have a long track record of objecting to same-sex marriage without citing the Bible.  In fact I never cite a religious reason when arguing against it.  I can also say I haven’t had anyone cite anything I’ve said and been able to describe it as hateful…except to merely point to the fact that I object and declare my objecting as what is hateful.

How can there be any meaningful discussion or debate if one side of the issue simply decides that dissent from their view is hateful and bigoted?  Wouldn’t it be more productive to take people at their word about how they feel, and not try to read between the lines?  On what basis can one side or the other declare the issue is settled without debate?

Comments

  1. Why does there need to be any debate about it? You object to it, so that’s simple enough. Don’t become gay, marry, or try to date a man. It’s really not your business from that point forward, is it?

    Should a gay individual need the biblical perspective on the matter, we can certainly share that with them if they are interested in hearing it. As for gay Christians, we should definitely point out in a loving way that the bible says God doesn’t approve of homosexuality. After that, what’s the point?

    It’s not your issue, you know? It’s theirs and their business.

    • @Warrioress

      The problem is I can’t merely object and “shelter” myself from it, so to speak. My objections don’t prevent schools from teaching their views to my kids. My objections cant protect against those schools from telling my kids that views like mine are intolerant and wrong. That’s why there needs to be a debate.

  2. The problem is that they just don’t want a debate. Some will offer “equality” and constitutional arguments. But most don’t know any more than that historically, they’ve actually been hated and persecuted completely unjustly. They start from there and don’t think they need to look any further.

    I strongly object to gay marriage on the basis that marriage has, does, and should be not only available to heterosexual couples, but encouraged as the right thing for THEM to do. None of us should care that any one person has any feelings at all for another unless we’re talking about a man and woman in love. Only their coupling carries with it the unique quality that makes their relationship absolutely necessary for society to even take note, let alone regulate it: the very real possibility that their relationship will result in children being produced, either by plan or “accident”.

    Hateful? Not to those who need it most: children. Not to them who need marriage to be understood to be what it is: a sacred promise to stay with the person with whom you intend to have a sexual relationship, BECAUSE it is likely to PRODUCE needy people!

  3. Is this a way for you to play the victimized persecution card while standing between fellow citizens and their freedom to pursue happiness?

    Feel free to find a descriptor that takes your supposition into accurate account, and let us know how to describe your position.

    And as always I am awaiting a legal argument based on or from the Constitution which allows the christian right minority to disallow any other segment of society to marry whom they choose.

    A legal argument. Not a biblical argument.

    • @Nash

      I’m not playing victim. I’m asking if I’m allowed to disagree on this subject without being subjected to name-calling.

      However, no one is allowed to marry anyone they want. Whether same sex marriage is legal or not, there’s always been restrictions on the participants. Even states which do not permit same sex marriage, the law applies to everyone equally. Anyone can marry someone of the opposite sex, who is not close relation, and not currently married. The state never asks if the participants are sexually attracted to one another or if they are homo- or heterosexual.

      And for the record, Ive never objected to same sex marriage on religious grounds. This site has dozens and dozens of posts on this issue and zero make a religious argument. So that’s kind of a moot objection.

  4. Why does there need to be any debate about it? You object to it, so that’s simple enough. Don’t become gay, marry, or try to date a man. It’s really not your business from that point forward, is it?

    On its face, this is stupid. It reeks of moral relativity.

    Anyway, since same-sex couples want recognition of their relationships, that makes it the business of society.There is simply no good reason to allow same-sex marriages. It doesn’t satisfy any of the original requirements, and creates a dangerous precedent.

  5. paynehollow says:

    I, for one, do not think that anyone is a bigot or hateful simply because they disagree about whether this behavior or that behavior is sinful, wrong or harmful. Someone can say to me, “I happen to think that smoking is wrong… I think drinking alcohol is wrong… I think driving a car is wrong… I think that two guys or two girls marrying each other is wrong…” and I find nothing offensive, bigoted or hateful at any of that. That is just expressing an opinion, for what it is worth. That can even be offered in love and concern.

    What is bigoted, by definition, is the treating a whole group of people – gay people, Baptists, white people, etc – treating that group of people as inherently bad, or as comparable to those who engage in murder, bestiality or other overtly harmful acts. That is the definition of “bigotry.”

    So, as the warrioress noted, don’t believe in smoking, drinking, marrying within the same sex, etc? Don’t do it. If asked about it, you can offer “I happen to think that this behavior/action is harmful/sinful, in my opinion…” and I don’t think you’re being bigoted.

    Suggesting you speak for God, that you can’t be mistaken, that those who disagree with you are liars or evil, and you’ve moved from expressing an opinion to sounding arrogant and presumptuous. Saying “all gays” or “all smokers” or “all Baptists” are evil or sinful, and you’ve said something bigoted.

    Seems straightforward to me.

    And I offer that only because I called some specific remarks of another person (not John) “bigoted,” because their specific words were, by definition, bigoted.

    One man’s opinion.

    ~Dan

  6. “Saying “all gays” or “all smokers” or “all Baptists” are evil or sinful, and you’ve said something bigoted.”

    So, I’ll go there. All gays are sinful. All Baptists are sinful. All smokers are sinful.

    “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”

    I guess Paul and I will have to wear the bigot lable.

  7. Craig,

    Nice one.

  8. In my definition, a bigot is someone who refuses to accept an entire group of people because of who they are.
    You can object to homosexual desires, but to legally deny two men the right to marry is bigoted because you are refusing to accept their relationship as equal to a heterosexual relationship.
    I hate when my fellow gay’s become personal with their attacks, it makes all of us look bad. I’m a gay man who enjoys intelligent debates. But I still have not seen a valid reason for denying same-sex couples to the right to marry.
    let’s look at the argument that it’s just tradition. It’s a logical fallacy to say that just because something has been a way, then it should always be that way. Using that reasoning to justify making a law would mean that segregation would still be legal. Just because something is traditional does not, in of itself, make it a valid reason to pass a law.
    Another argument I see is that it’s bad for children. This is especially offensive. There are THOUSANDS of kids in foster care programs right now. Orphanages are completely underfunded. You’re saying it’s better for these kids to have no parents than to have two dads or two moms. Even if the gay couple would choose a surrogate, there are no studies which show that homosexuality is bad for kids. The one study which the state of Utah is currently using in the Amendment 3 case has been denounced by many statistic groups because it didn’t actually study children of same-sex parents. It studied children of parents with same-sex attraction. It went out and sought kids who had parents who hid their sexuality for a large part of their lives, not kids who were raised by two men or two women. The APA even says that gay parents are just as good as straight parents. This is coming from an organization that just twenty years ago was saying that homosexuality was a mental disease.
    So the point that gays aren’t as good of parents as straights falls, because there are no studies which back it up. And essentially, people who make that argument are stating that it’s better for kids to be in foster care, be in an orphanage, or not be born at all rather than be raised with two men or two women.
    And as for the argument that it sets a precedent for things such as bestiality, pedophelia, and polygamy? Another logical fallacy. Just because X happens does not mean that Y will happen. CONSENT will always be required for marriage, gay marriage does not change that. Animals and children cannot give consent. And as for polygamy, there are tons of legal hurdles which come with plural marriage. (Taxes, custody, divorce). Also, changing the precedent of gender does not equal changing the precedent of number of people involved. So that point falls.
    So when someone sees all of these legal points, and still chooses to deny gays the right to marry, I do say it’s safe to call that person bigoted. And I don’t mean to sound harsh or condescending or irrational, but refusing to accept a group of relationships as equal to your own with no valid legal reason is bigoted.
    My email is Bryce333@Yahoo.com I would love to hear your input.

    • Bryce

      Thanks for the comment. You obviously have thought about the issue. But have you ever stopped to consider why the government ever licensed marriage in the first place? Have you ever considered why the state never asks why a man and woman want to marry?

      I know how this will sound but hear me out. It should be obvious that same sex sexual pairings are not the same or equal to opposite sex sexual pairings. This is not to say which or either one is better, just that they arent equal.

      The government has an intrinsic stake in supporting long-term opposite sex sexual relationships, they produce the next generation, they encourage fathers to stay in the family. It’s not just some random thing called tradition like serving cranberries at Thanksgiving. It’s called traditional marriage because throughout all of societal history, marriage has been between men and women.

      Any legal objection you have, hospital visitation, inheritance and property rights, etc. can all be settled without altering the state of marriage.

      • brycelancaster says:

        I first off would again, like to say that not all gay advocates are those who immediately spout off “Bigot” and “Homophobe!” But I think it would help for everybody to understand why they do. It’s not because they’re irrational people, but because this issue means a lot more to them then it does to you. For you, it represents an interesting legal debate. To them, it’s a MAJOR part of their lives. It’s like if someone was trying to take away your right to be a father. You’re obviously going to get more emotional the more impact the debate has on you. So that’s why you see gay people get so passionate about the debate, because it means a lot more to them than to most straight people arguing against it.

        In terms of the original intent of marriage, it was originally a business transaction between families arranging marriages of children. It was a way to consolidate wealth and power. I’m think the meaning began to change to the one you’re talking about, (Preserving the family, encouraging fathers to stay, etc.), around the 50s. This is when the US began to put a heavy emphasis on the idea of the “Nuclear Family”. Marriage became a way of creating an American Image of wholesomeness.

        As to why the government never asks a couple why they’re getting married, it’s because it does not matter why. Love is not necessary for marriage, but neither is procreation ability. There aren’t requirements for reasons to get married because if two people wish to enter into a government contract together to gain mutual benefits, that’s their right. I could go get married to my best girlfriend right now, save thousands on taxes, and never sleep with her because I’m not attracted to women. We would never have to procreate to gain a marriage license because as long as we meet the legal requirements, we don’t have to prove any intent to uphold the “Nuclear Family” image.

        I think you’re mistaking “Equal” with “Different”. Yes, same-sex couples are different than opposite-sex couples. But can they be equal? Yes. The same way a black is different than a white but they’re still equal to each other. The only thing they are not equal in is their ability to procreate, which is not a requirement for marriage. It’s an IDEAL that was introduced with the idea of the Nuclear Family, but not a requirement.

        My most important point: In the terms of the government having an intrinsic stake of upholding values such as fathers staying in the family and creating the next generation…. they absolutely do. But nobody has been able to show how legalizing same-sex marriage hinders either of those things. In fact, legalizing same-sex marriage gives an additional benefit of allowing more orphaned or abandoned kids the opportunity to have a home. Allowing gays to get married changes the image of “The Nuclear Family” but not the function. This was a main reason why the Utah judge ruled in favor of gay marriage… the state could not prove that legalizing gay marriage would harm the benefits of opposite-sex marriage. Just because their gay neighbors got married does not mean that Johnny will be more likely to leave his family when his wife gives birth. And just because her gay brother got married does not mean that Sally won’t procreate. Traditional Marriage will still function in the exact same way, the only difference would be that Gays would get the same benefits.

        We’ve always called an Apple a fruit. Calling a Banana a fruit as well doesn’t change the function of the Apple. They are both different in a lot of ways, but still exist under the same name and neither of their functions are harmed from the other being classified the same way as them.

        I enjoy this exchange and hope you respond.

        • Bryce

          In terms of the original intent of marriage, it was originally a business transaction between families arranging marriages of children. It was a way to consolidate wealth and power. I’m think the meaning began to change to the one you’re talking about, (Preserving the family, encouraging fathers to stay, etc.), around the 50s. This is when the US began to put a heavy emphasis on the idea of the “Nuclear Family”. Marriage became a way of creating an American Image of wholesomeness.

          As to why the government never asks a couple why they’re getting married, it’s because it does not matter why. Love is not necessary for marriage, but neither is procreation ability. There aren’t requirements for reasons to get married because if two people wish to enter into a government contract together to gain mutual benefits, that’s their right. I could go get married to my best girlfriend right now, save thousands on taxes, and never sleep with her because I’m not attracted to women. We would never have to procreate to gain a marriage license because as long as we meet the legal requirements, we don’t have to prove any intent to uphold the “Nuclear Family” image.

          You’re right, marriage for love is only a very VERY recent phenomena. Marriages have always been arranged, and they were intended to perpetuate large families. This is why the government, now in modern times here in America, licenses marriages. The issue licenses to encourage procreation, even though not every hetero relationship produces children. The fact remains the large majority of them do. Its because of this that they encourage that norm.

          Acknowledging that marriage isn’t necessarily about love is a point in my column. Since this isn’t the case, the gov need not make any changes. It removes the “marry who I love” objection same-sex marriage proponents offer.

          But to your most important point. It isn’t the moral value of keeping the father in the home, it is the fact that keeping the father in the home prevents poverty for the single mother and child as well as the father. It keeps a child with their natural parents, or at least attempts to encourage it.

          With the legalization of same sex marriage comes the necessary conclusion that one parent in a family is not needed, either a mother or a father. It also will inevitably restrict the degree to which a person has parental control over their own child. In my example to a comment previously, schools will be able to teach the issue from their point of view regardless of any parental objection. In fact, the school outlines that I’ve seen strongly imply that to oppose homosexuality, for any reason, is itself immoral. It will set kids against their parents.

          Legalizing same sex marriage has a more significant religious and political impact than it does a moral one. Gay people dont bother me. Gay people kissing or holding hands doesnt gross me out. I do have religious and political objections to homosexuality, but I have religious and political objections to many things, it’s not just this.

          It’s great to see that you’re not taking it personally, because it’s not meant to be be given in offense.

          Cheers!

      • So John,
        To be clear you are “for” having the federal government define, sanction and determine outcomes of marriage, as long as it is not same sex? Why is their an exception to your usual positions in this regard? You seem to go on ad naueseum when it comes to the government intruding in almost any other way, unless it benefits your world view. This would seem to be a severely biased position.

        If you think that the government should be in the business of regulating the next generation, why not lobby to make divorce illegal instead? The numbers with regards to the next generation are far more affected by the 50%+ rate of marriage failure than the .01% of gay marriages.

        And I am noticing that yet again, there is no legally reasoned way for the christian right to argue away of justify the prevention of gay marriage. It is all still being justified with quasi intellectual one liners. Which is just cover for biblical worldviews. None of this will hold up in court.

        • @Nash

          2 things. First, the divorce rate isn’t 50%, it’s about 30 or so.

          And second, I oppose no fault divorce. I dont think marriage should be so easily dissolved. What other contract can one participant break for no reason with no legal recompense?

          • John,

            Would you prevent “no-fault” divorce if you had the power? Would you force 2 people to stay together against their will using the power of the state?

            Marriage is not a contract. It’s a license from a county, recognized by the state. That license, as per the Constitutions XIII Amend(?) says that it must be recognized as such. It allows for financial/health decisions to be made etc. No contract.

            The reason I keep asking about a legal argument is because your supposition is 100% informed by your biblical world view. It is the filter in which you view any and all moral/ethical dilemmas. So you don’t have to invoke your religion for it to be known by all that it is the sole filter in which your views are informed.

            So I keep asking because it will most surely present a dead end for your premise.

            Why do you not answer?

            For the record, no legal argument can be made, which is exactly why your traditional marriage world is evolving into just a “marriage” view.

  9. Nash,

    John objects to changing the definition of marriage which, for the last 4,500 years, has been one man, one woman. I also imagine John is concerned with the precedent same-sex marriage creates. So, in no way does this conflict with his limited government philosophy. Exactly the opposite, actually. John objects to government bureaucrats and activist judges altering a 4,500-year-old institution.

    • Well Terrance, slavery and various other “institutions” have been redefined by government…..and the christian conservatives fought tooth nail then to.

      By the way, there is no institution of marriage. It’s an idea, and it is open to change, as most ideas do.

      The same arguments for “precedent” were made to allow the federal government and some state governments to disallow the slave trade. Here in Texas they had some unconvincing, yet stubborn arguments, to keep on engaging, in spite of activist judges saying otherwise. Activist judges also allowed women to vote, discontinues indentured servitude, etc. Hell, the gaggle of guys who wrote the Constitution were all deemed revolutionary activists.

      Where is the secular rule of law, “legal” argument to be made to prevent same-sex marriage?

      • Nash

        “Where is the secular rule of law, “legal” argument to be made to prevent same-sex marriage?”

        You say this nearly every time, but you have yet see that I have never made a sectarian argument, nor have I invoked religion, God, the bible, or the church…ever. So I have to ask, why do you keep asking?

  10. brycelancaster says:

    Terrance, did you read any of my posts? I already pointed out how using the “It’s a tradition so we should keep it just because of that” is a logical fallacy. And how it doesn’t set a precedent AT ALL. (Animals and children can’t give consent, changing gender does not set a precedent for changing number of people for polygamy. Polygamy also has a lot of legal problems with multiple people involved).

    In fact, can you counter any of the points I made in my last post Terrance?

  11. Look, procreation isn’t a requirement for marriage but it is one of the only reasons government involved itself in the practice to begin with, since nations cannot continue to exist without replenishing it’s natural-born population. No, not every straight couple is capable of procreating. But in principle, it’s always possible. With homosexuals, however, you’re talking about something that isn’t just incidentally impossible, but impossible in principle!

    • Because procreation (let’s call it child-rearing) is “one of the only reasons government involved itself in the practice to begin with” is an important reason why same sex marriages should be/are now equally recognized. A significant number of gay and lesbian couples are raising children. Children need to have legal kinship with both of their parents, regardless of their gender, for inheritance reasons and to ensure both parents have equal legal standing. Marriage provides this without burdening the couple with additional legal costs and hoops to jump through. Any burden placed upon same sex couples that doesn’t impact opposite sex couples is a point of inequality. The SCOTUS will correct this when it receives a same sex marriage case based on the 14th amendment.The fact that two people of the same gender cannot biologically procreate is completely irrelevant. Children of gay and lesbian parents need the same legal protections as children of opposite sex couples.

  12. In terms of the original intent of marriage, it was originally a business transaction between families arranging marriages of children. It was a way to consolidate wealth and power. I’m think the meaning began to change to the one you’re talking about, (Preserving the family, encouraging fathers to stay, etc.), around the 50s. This is when the US began to put a heavy emphasis on the idea of the “Nuclear Family”. Marriage became a way of creating an American Image of wholesomeness.

    Going back to English Common Law, the only reason government involved itself in the practice was to encourage stable family relationships (homosexual relationships are notoriously unstable, as studies indicate) and to encourage procreation, as I previously stated.

    As to why the government never asks a couple why they’re getting married, it’s because it does not matter why. Love is not necessary for marriage, but neither is procreation ability. There aren’t requirements for reasons to get married because if two people wish to enter into a government contract together to gain mutual benefits, that’s their right. I could go get married to my best girlfriend right now, save thousands on taxes, and never sleep with her because I’m not attracted to women. We would never have to procreate to gain a marriage license because as long as we meet the legal requirements, we don’t have to prove any intent to uphold the “Nuclear Family” image.

    The fact remains that government only ever involved itself in the practice for the reasons I already listed. You keep talking about this “Nuclear Family” thing as though it means anything. Government involvement in the marriage contract predates this by about a mile. If government doesn’t believe it’s necessary to promote stable relationships and procreation anymore, then they need to get out of the marriage business entirely, leaving it to the Church, and issue civil unions for legal purposes.

    I think you’re mistaking “Equal” with “Different”. Yes, same-sex couples are different than opposite-sex couples. But can they be equal? Yes. The same way a black is different than a white but they’re still equal to each other. The only thing they are not equal in is their ability to procreate, which is not a requirement for marriage. It’s an IDEAL that was introduced with the idea of the Nuclear Family, but not a requirement.

    This is meaningless noise. From Cornell University, “Marriage was viewed as the basis of the family unit and vital to the preservation of morals and civilization. “

    Like I said, the idea of procreation goes back as far as English Common Law in the Western tradition. You simply don’t know what you’re talking about.

    In fact, legalizing same-sex marriage gives an additional benefit of allowing more orphaned or abandoned kids the opportunity to have a home.

    Generally, I have no problem with homosexuals adopting children. But rather than change the definition of a 4,500 year old institution to suit 2% of the population, perhaps the better solution would be to change the adoption requirements.

  13. brycelancaster says:

    To your last few points John… your essential argument is that the concept of gay marriage itself is enough to harm opposite-sex couples. Though there are no facts to back this up, the argument that i’m hearing is that if the state recognizes that marriages CAN be gender neutral, fathers will interpret that to mean they don’t have to stay? That argument is a pretty prime example of a slippery slope. If I’m putting words in your mouth let me know, but I’m pretty sure that’s the gist of it. Slippery Slope arguments are justifiable enough to prevent a whole class of people from getting married.

    And as for your argument about how schools will teach it, I believe that it’s not relevant to the topic. Yes, if the state recognizes gay marriage then schools will teach children that gays can get married. They might even have a bias one way or another, (It may be pro gay marriage where you live, it depends on the region really. I have a hard time imagining that it would be a very positive message down south). I think what you’re experiencing is what many LGBT people experience daily. All of us have been taught or told at one point in our lives that our lifestyles are not worthy or valid in religious or legal sense. Just because you personally feel uncomfortable with how society would view gay marriage is not a valid legal reason to deny marriage to same-sex couples. Schools teach public policy. If public policy is that gays should get married, then they’ll teach that gays should get married. If public policy is that blacks are equal to whites, they’ll teach that blacks are equal to whites. It’s up to you to either put your children in a private school or teach them from home. But using the school system as a valid reason against marriage equality is not a legally justifable position.

    I’ve always agreed that marriage isn’t about love. Marriage is about two people who have a close enough bond that they wish to have a government contract giving them mutual benefits. The image behind it is one of nuclear family, but the function of the contract is the same for any two mutually consenting people. It’s neither about love NOR procreation.

    In fact, your argument that licenses are used to encourage child rearing actually falls in favor of the gay marriage court. With gay marriage, more couples would be able to adopt and have surrogates. It’s a different type of family structure than originally imagined, but again, like every other point I’ve made, it serves the same function.

    And finally, I do want to say that you have offended me. Everybody who opposes my right to marry offends me, because it directly affects my entire future. I know how to hold a polite conversation though and respectfully disagree.

    • but no one opposes your right to marry. even in states which prohibit same sex marriage, the laws apply to everyone. I couldnt marry a man if I wanted to regardless of my sexual desires. what the objection is really about is that homosexuals cant marry the person they want to have sex with. otherwise all the laws apply to everyone equally regardless of their sexuality.

      • And herein lies the critical connection to the 14th amendment. I’d like to see the Bostic case in Virginia be the one that is taken up by the SCOTUS. The unequal treatment of gay and lesbian couples denies them the equal protection rights guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

        • If any man can marry any woman, who is of age and legally free to marry, how is anyone being treated unequally? Your problem doesnt seem to be that everyone has the same rights, because they do. Your contention seems to be that you dont like that everyone has the same restrictions.

      • Equal protection regardless of gender, John. But you knew that.

        • Exactly. Equal protection. Regardless of sexual inclination, a man can marry any woman who is of age and free to marry. What your argument is, is that we should start taking sexual attraction into consideration.

        • On a tangent. For some reason your comments are requiring approval when they should just publish. If you see a delay in their posting, im not holding them. Ill be out tonight and might not get to them right away, and will try to fix the problem tonight.

          Thanks for your patience, Scott.

      • No, no, John. Not start taking sexual attraction into consideration (those would be your words put in my mouth), stop taking gender into consideration in violation of the equal protection clause. This is how it will play out, and you can put me down as predicting that even Justice Scalia will be in the majority that strikes down all state anti-marriage amendments. Have a nice evening.

  14. Well Terrance, slavery and various other “institutions” have been redefined by government…..and the christian conservatives fought tooth nail then to.

    Obviously not true. Go read about the Second Great Awakening and all those itinerant preachers who rallied against slavery. Slavery was kept alive by Southerners because their economy depended on it. The fact they called themselves Christians says nothing about the religion itself, though you’re hinting it.

    By the way, there is no institution of marriage. It’s an idea, and it is open to change, as most ideas do.

    For the last 4,500 years, the institution has been one man, one woman, and has always been this in Western civilizations. If government no longer feels marriage is necessary to promote procreation and societal stability, then they need to get out of the business entirely.

    The same arguments for “precedent” were made to allow the federal government and some state governments to disallow the slave trade. Here in Texas they had some unconvincing, yet stubborn arguments, to keep on engaging, in spite of activist judges saying otherwise. Activist judges also allowed women to vote, discontinues indentured servitude, etc. Hell, the gaggle of guys who wrote the Constitution were all deemed revolutionary activists.

    Correctly interpreting the Constitution is not an example of activism, regardless the mantra from the opposing side.

    Where is the secular rule of law, “legal” argument to be made to prevent same-sex marriage?

    Since the burden of proof is on those wishing to change the law, you tell me what the legal argument is.

    • Terrance,
      Obviously not true. Go read about the Second Great Awakening and all those itinerant preachers who rallied against slavery. Slavery was kept alive by Southerners because their economy depended on it. The fact they called themselves Christians says nothing about the religion itself, though you’re hinting it.

      All of those itinerant preachers? Second Great Awakening……..so second? Too bad for those countless millions they weren’t there to dissuade their brethren’s use of slaves. Who were not around at all as the African slave trade came into full effect and lasted how long? The correlated christian social movement against slavery came at the end. They road the coat tails. They were very late to that party. But again it is ignored that christians, yet again, were on the wrong side of history while they engaged in slavery/indentured servitude. How is that? Was it the secular humanists and not the puritans who brought with them from England the practice of using children as currency. Why yes it was. 12 years of servitude was often the length of that “contract”. Those are your christian founders.

      And again christians brought their old world Bronze Age gibberish when it came to allowing women to vote or own property. You will no doubt try to argue that it was christians who rescued those rights as well. Instead of revising history, why not fess up and concede that those anti-liberty practices were part of the socio-political fabric of christian practice? Yes there were some christians who eventually came very late to the women’s suffrage movement, but why was it there at all? You new age christians seem to being going on about equality now. How would your view been treated then by your fellow christians? You would have been ostracized or maybe worse.

      For the last 4,500 years, the institution has been one man, one woman, and has always been this in Western civilizations. If government no longer feels marriage is necessary to promote procreation and societal stability, then they need to get out of the business entirely.

      Again, institution? There is no institution. This is a hollow talking point term, it has no basis as a descriptor. Please show where any state government, much less the federal government has argued that they are in the business of promoting procreation or societal stability. Your making an inference.

      Correctly interpreting the Constitution is not an example of activism, regardless the mantra from the opposing side.

      Correctly interpreting the Constitution? A document that has been revised and amended how many times? Some of those “activist” founders were ostracized for such forward thinking ideas. They put their legal capital on the line along with their reputation. And thankfully so.

      Since the burden of proof is on those wishing to change the law, you tell me what the legal argument is.

      Maybe, just maybe you should read the 20+ court decision briefings in which your propositions were soundly rejected, and progress reared its ugly head again. The legal argument for equal measure has been made many times over. And the christian conservative holdovers are a shrinking minority trying desperately to intellectualize their need to be on the wrong side of history again.

      • Nash

        women were never prohibited from owning land in the Israelite middle east, nor in the christian middle east. Give me a break.

        • Seriously John? Where have I once mentioned anything in the Middle East?

          Although curious that you would raise that issue but ignore the slavery in the same context.

          Terrance and I have been talking about the US and Western Civ. That would be the world or chapter of history in which various flavors of christianity moved from the Mediterranean through Europe and the to the Americas…….all places where the Catholic church in its two flavors and then during and after the two Reformations, specifically disallowed women from owning property. Right through the Anglican church of England and the first 300 hundred years of the United States history/infancy.

          Guess what? Christianity and their christian tenets were arguing against allowing women to own property or vote, and used the bible to justify such a proposition. It took “activist” judges and social radicals “flaunting” women’s right in your face to change the course of history. They even had parades trying to raise awareness of the “unequal” treatment that women saw under the law.
          In 1920, the christian argument against allowing women equal rights was obliterated and some radicals in Congress amended the Constitution to reflect the burgeoning equality of the time.

          • Nash, where do you think Christianity was originated?

            • Your moving goal posts John. We both know where christianity originated. That’s irrelevant to the topic.

              But if you think that is a valid point, please explain how the glut of christian sects after the Israelites got it wrong.

              And I find it more than curious that you have gone all OT on us as a way to try and justify equality under Israelite law for women owning property but have left out the juicy stuff:

              1 Corinthians 11:3
              But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

              1 Corinthians 14:34-36
              Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

              Ephesians 5:22-24
              Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

              Colossians 3:18
              Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

              1 Timothy 2:11-15
              Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing.

              Titus 2:4-5
              Teach the young women to be … obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

              1 Peter 3:1
              Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands.

              Is it just me or does this sort of mental dissonance seem at odds with your biblical moral compass/authority when equality is discussed? It would seem that your filter might warp your faculties in a way that fabricates nothing but bias and negative outcomes for those of a lower status. These were/are the passages used to argue, in Congress as well as other government places, and in churches, to deny women the right to own property or to vote.

              No amount of apologetics or revising of history can change that. And it’s tough for those of us on the other side of the argument to not see such stark analogies to gay marriage.

              I am curious to hear you talk about the question I posed earlier though: Would you, if you had the power force people to stay together in a marriage against their will? Would you use the power of the state to revoke individual liberties?

          • Women didnt vote because the original voting structure was one vote per homestead/family. The man was the head of the household and he cast the vote for the family.

            It was then later Christian Republicans who helped amend the constitution to allow women and blacks to vote, and ended slavery.

            • Please tell us why the man was the head of the household?

              And you won’t fool me with your use of the flipped party names. Trying to ride the coattails of those republicans, who were liberal progressives philosophically, isn’t even intellectually dishonest, it’s disturbing. I wonder how it is that you could try to do that, but the few republicans who are doing the same thing now, with regards to marriage equality, are looked down upon by the christian conservative right. It reeks of revisionist convenience. Those republicans were the opposite of the GOP of today, and you know that.

  15. brycelancaster says:

    John, that’s like saying that marriage equality existed in the 1950’s.

    Blacks have the right to marry their own race, whites have the right to marry their own race.

    It was the exact same argument.

  16. byrce,

    It’s not the same argument – at all. Allowing interracial marriages doesn’t change the definition of marriage. Not only that, race is an innate quality; it’s never been proven that homosexuality is innate, much less the product of a normal functioning mind and body.

  17. brycelancaster says:

    Terrance, can you prove that allowing gays to marry affects the FUNCTION of marriage? (Not the ideal). No? Then your points fall.

    Changing the definition does not change the function. Marriages will still be about two people gaining mutual beneficial privileges together. Procreation was encouraged but not necessary. Allowing gays to marry does not HARM procreation. Gay people getting married does not affect the birth rate of straight couples. Therefore, it does not harm the function of marriage. It only helps it because they would gain the ability to adopt unwanted children.

    • bryce, so then if the gov were to loosen the hoops people had to jump through and relax laws regarding adoption, then you wouldnt need same sex marriage?

      if the gov recognizes same sex marriage, there is no reason to incentivize marriage at all. since the whole reason is to promote long-term opposite sex coupling, expanding the parameters renders any incentivizing purposeless. at that point, the gov should stop licensing marriage altogether.

  18. brycelancaster says:

    Terrance…. interracial marriage changed the definition of marriage in a large way. before that, babies were almost always pure race. Babies who weren’t were illegiminate and shunned by both societies. Marriage in the 1950’s was defined additionally as keeping bloodlines pure, because God didn’t want to mix races. It changed the definition of marriage in a big way and nothing bad happened because of it.

    And as for homosexuality being innate…. really? Do you really believe that homosexuality is a choice? or that it can be changed? Every major psychological organization in this country has stated that ex-gay therapies are incredibly harmful. And why the hell would anyone choose to be gay when LGBT teens are three times more likely to commit suicide?

  19. brycelancaster says:

    It seems like you guys have just one point left… marriage is about procreation. Sorry, but procreation is not a requirement. It’s an ideal. Marriage was used to push an ideal, but it has since EVOLVED into a much grander scale. With 1100 rights, responsibilities, and benefits that come with marriage, it’s not just about encouraging procreation anymore. It’s function is now to give two mutually consenting adults a much easier life with government sanctioned benefits. Thats the FUNCTION of marriage as it is today. To deny two people the function of marriage because they don’t fit into the original ideal is bigoted, tying back to the original post.

  20. brycelancaster says:

    John, the whole reason of marriage is no longer just to procreate. It’s to gain legal security. That’s where your points fall. The original intent is good and all, but how marriage is viewed today is entirely different. When a couple gets married, its not because they want to have kids. It’s because they want security for their lifestyle together.

  21. Terrance, can you prove that allowing gays to marry affects the FUNCTION of marriage? (Not the ideal). No? Then your points fall.

    I already proved it. The ONLY REASON government involved itself in the practice to begin with was to promote procreation and stability, believing that the TRADITIONAL FAMILY UNIT is “vital to the preservation of morals and society.”

    If government no longer believes this, fine. Let’s do away with marriage and issue civil unions to all desiring couples, homosexuals included.

    You keep styling marriage as though it were dreamed up by some drunken politician. Like I said, It’s original purpose is that which homosexual unions inherently cannot fulfill, so by changing the definition, you’re ruining the original intent and sinking the institution into a cask of utter meaninglessness. So, I think if same-sex marriage is the new bandwagon government plans to jump on, then we need to do away with the institution in order to keep its integrity in tact. Issue civil unions to all couples and leave marriage to the Church.

  22. brycelancaster says:

    So now you guys are down to the point of civil unions. Separate but equal clauses are not practical. Marriage IS required for that security currently, so thats what we fight for. If everybody has a civil union, then that’s great. Let’s all get civil unions and get rid of marriage. But if half of us have marriages and the other half have civil-unions and they’re the same in everything but name, then it’s simply a matter of semantics. But the gays lose in the scenario, because civil unions have a weaker connotation than marriage. Just like an “All black school” has a weaker connotation than an “All white school”, even if they both teach the same things. If all marriages were dissolved and everybody got civil unions, then that’s great. But clauses such as separate but equal don’t work because it’s simply a matter of semantics and they AREN’T equal. The government sanctions are the same, but the respect given is very much different.

    The definition of marriage has changed. At one point in time, for a long time, it was about procreation, sure. But it’s currently sought out for legal security. Instead of creating a separate institution, (Civil Unions), to represent that institution, let’s just call marriage what it is now. A way to gain legal security.

  23. Terrance…. interracial marriage changed the definition of marriage in a large way. before that, babies were almost always pure race.

    No, it didn’t. The original institution made no mention of race. Yes, there were separate laws in certain parts of the country that prohibited interracial marriages, but those were, like same-sex marriage, a perversion of the original institution.

    And as for homosexuality being innate…. really? Do you really believe that homosexuality is a choice? or that it can be changed? Every major psychological organization in this country has stated that ex-gay therapies are incredibly harmful. And why the hell would anyone choose to be gay when LGBT teens are three times more likely to commit suicide?

    In some cases, I believe it’s a choice. I knew a girl in H.S. who, believe me, was no lesbian. I knew this woman in the biblical sense, if you know what I mean. Now days, however, she’s a lesbian. Not bisexual, but lesbian – according to her. I also know a guy who was totally straight before going to prison. Now? He’s about as gay as it gets.

    But I don’t believe it’s always a choice, or even a choice most of the time. I tend to think it’s an illness of some sort. Something isn’t right. Perhaps there’s a problem in the brain we’ve yet to uncover, and the suicide likelihood only amplifies this belief. Now, I know what you’re going to say. Homosexuals are more likely to kill themselves because of the stigma placed on them by society. But even studies among Dutch homosexuals, where homosexuality is widely recognize and accepted, show similar rates of mental instability and suicidal thoughts.

    No, I don’t believe conversion therapy is effective. I believe homosexuality reflects some sort of abnormality in the brain, mind, or body, but I do not believe conversion therapy is an effective treatment. You have to understand something completely before effective treatments can be discovered.

  24. No, I’m not talking about separate but equal. I’m saying do away with marriage entirely and issue civil unions to all couples who want one. You’re not reading what I’m saying, obviously.

  25. brycelancaster says:

    I need to go to bed. This was enlightening, I hope for all parties involved. Good night.

  26. Bryce, do you think I am being discriminated against if I wanted to marry, say, Terrance, and same sex marriage was not legal?

    You just had to use me in that example, didn’t ya? <3

  27. brycelancaster says:

    Terrance, I completely agree with you on that point. That would be a great solution, as long as everybody was equal. But that’s just not practical.

  28. brycelancaster says:

    Okay now I’m going to bed!

  29. bryce,

    It didn’t at one time seem practical to fundamentally alter the institution of marriage – thereby rendering it effectively meaningless – but we see that happening slowly. And I think that’s a shame. It’s nothing short of scandalous to deface such a noble institution as marriage with relationships that simply cannot fulfill the original intent. Same-sex marriage, polygamist marriage, and other non-traditional types are a stain on the institution, and so in order to save it, I say do away with it.

    To me, homosexuality is a symptom of biological, psychological, or neurological malfunction. It could even be a combination of the three, I don’t know. But it’s certainly not normal behavior, despite the prevailing wisdom of so-called experts whose PC-mantra reflect an adherence to ideological dogma rather than academic study.

    With that being said, I have nothing against homosexuals. I don’t find them “icky” or “gross” and I don’t go out of my way to avoid them. I’ve danced with homosexuals, partied with homosexuals, and gone out on friendly dates with homosexuals, both men and women. I have gay friends and family members. I don’t treat them any differently than I treat other people, despite my belief that homosexuality is completely abnormal. All people are deserving of love and respect by virtue of their humanity.

    I like homosexuals as well as I like any other kind of people. But I don’t like same-sex marriage and I don’t agree with it. If that makes me a bigot, fine, then I’m a bigot.

  30. brycelancaster says:

    Absolutely all people deserve love and respect and it’s great that you recognize that. But to me, denying them the 1100 privileges that come with marriage just for a matter of semantics isn’t rational. And it ultimately boils down to a matter of semantics. Because what marriage’s original intent was, in my opinion, does not matter anymore. What matters is the reality of what it is now, which is a secular government document which makes couples lives significantly easier. It is used almost exclusively for that purpose in modern day society by gay and straight couples alike. People don’t get married just because they want to have children, people get married because they want all the legal benefits that come with it, as well as social recognition of their commitment to each other. More and more couples are holding off on having children, and the birth rate has declined recently. The point is, the original intent of marriage is no longer valid in todays society and instead of trying to hold on to an outdated ideal, we should embrace our current reality.

    And as I’ve stated earlier, civil unions for just gay’s in particular don’t solve the problem because there would still be a social stigma. And getting rid of marriage all together and giving everybody civil unions just isn’t practical. Therefore, I’m in favor of same-sex marriage.

  31. bryce,

    I don’t support denying homosexual couples the privileges enjoyed by heterosexual couples. I just don’t want the institution of marriage altered to the point of meaninglessness, so I say do away with it, render it the latest victim of social liberalism, and issue civil unions to all couples who want one, gay or straight.

    I agree that the original intent of marriage is no longer something government wishes to promote. It’s original purpose has been forgotten, so government should end the institution to protect its integrity from further damage. And I do not believe this is a matter of semantics. Because, recognized or not, marriage isn’t merely a contractual obligation between two people, but a civic responsibility. But if promoting the traditional family unit is no longer necessary, then end the institution.

    You keep talking about social stigmas and that’s really all this is about. Homosexuals are more concerned with their relationships being viewed as equal to heterosexual relationships, and less concerned with the privileges to which married couples are entitled. The problem is that homosexual relationships are not equal to heterosexual relationships in any sense of the word. Homosexual relationships do not replenish the native-born population or ensure the survival of our species as a whole. They are not equal and never will be, no matter what we call them.

    You can have your privileges as far as I’m concerned. We can do away with marriage and call all relationships civil unions for all I care. But you can’t demand that your relationship with your boyfriend be equal to my relationship with my wife, because it never will be. You may love and cherish him just as much as I love and cherish my wife. I don’t dispute that. But your relationship is an evolutionary dead-end. It is impossible in principle for your relationship to ensure the survival of the species or even your own genes. Homosexuality doesn’t continue the lineage; it ends it.

    • brycelancaster says:

      I said in one of my original posts that the only way in which our relationships are not equal are in the ability to procreate. But I do demand that our relationships be treated equally under law, because the ability to procreate should not be a defining factor in marriage.

      And as for being a evolutionary dead-end, I prefer to think of us as a minor evolutionary solution. Our world wide population has reached 7 billion. Overpopulation is a huge problem in some parts of the world. There’s a ton of competition for natural resources and there simply aren’t enough jobs for people anymore. If 3% of the population chooses not to have kids, and instead adopts unwanted kids… then hey, that’s actually pretty good. It doesn’t solve the problem but it helps. Having couples which naturally don’t procreate is actually preferable. If every couple had the 3 kids represented by the original American ideal we’d have another generation of Baby Boomers, which our economy really can’t handle right now. (The first batch is going to be wreaking havoc on our social security system in a few years as it is). Hell, China went so far as to ban couples from having more than one child because the effects on their system. I’d say that same-sex couples are better than opposite-sex couples at trying to maintain homeostasis in our environment. So I guess there’s another way in which we aren’t equal. Of course, if a large part of the population was homosexual it would spell disaster for our species. But 3%? There’s no negative evolutionary effect for THAT. (And as for the studies showing that homosexuality is rising, I would contribute that to more people being OPEN about their sexuality. The average Coming Out age dropped like a dozen years within the past decade)

      Yes, the social stigma is important. Same-sex couples can’t procreate the same as opposite-sex couples, but that doesn’t make them a lesser couple. It makes them a different couple. Evolutionary, yes, nature would dictate that the same-sex couple would be inferior. But hell, if we based all of our social judgements based off of nature, then we’d be a pretty messed up society. Look at Stephen Hawking. I think we can both agree that he’s far superior in his contributions to society than either of us. But if we just looked at his evolutionary state, we’d be saying, “Stephen Hawking can never be equal to us and never will be.” The fact is that his inability to contribute biologically through movement does not hinder his ability to be an equal human being because there are so many other incredible traits in him. Likewise, the inability of same-sex couples to procreate does not hinder their ability to contribute to the bettering of our soceity.

  32. “Marriage”, “civil union”, same thing, different words. I’ve never seen an argument that justifies granting marital benefits to anyone BUT one man/one woman unions who publicly commit to each other. Why should we? And if we do, then what arrangement of people would never qualify? A group of four, two guys and two gals? One guy and three gals? One gal and three guys? One guy and three gals, two of whom are mother and daughter? How about two guys who just room together, don’t ever have sex with each other and whore about with women whenever they can? How about just one guy with no desire to ever live with anyone, man, woman or animal? Bringing up 1100 alleged benefits suggests something unbecoming of those not presently qualified for licensing.

  33. bryce,

    The ability to procreate isn’t a defining characteristic of relationships, I agree. It is closely related with marriage, however, as the only reason government involved itself in marriage to begin with is due to the belief that the traditional family unit is the foundation of society. That means procreation.

    I’m not going to argue the population point because it’s irrelevant. We’re not overpopulated in the United States, and one-child policies in China have created more problems than they’ve solved. You have millions more men than women in China because of the discriminatory practice of aborting females, and that spells trouble. Overpopulation is a problem in the third-world because they lack infrastructure, common sense, and modern birth-control methods.

    I think the inability to procreate matters more than you think. Nations cannot exist without people, or continue as they are without native-born people. It’s not just about evolution, but national identity. And I made no claim that homosexuals cannot contribute to society. Of course they can. But their relationships simply cannot accomplish all that which heterosexual relationships can.

    Marshal,

    No, I don’t believe they are the same. Marriage means one thing, a civil union means something else entirely. Homosexual couples cannot satisfy the requirement of marriage as it has existed since the beginning of Western civilization.

  34. brycelancaster says:

    Sorry Marshalart, we’ve already covered all those points. All those arguments are slippery slopes. (Except for the example of two guys who don’t room together and whore around with women, that could hypothetically happen. But that could happen with a guy and a girl too. I could get married to my best straight lesbian friend right now and never sleep with her and save thousands on taxes if I wanted to).

    And as for all the reasons to give same-sex couples the benefits… just read the comments above. Or you could consider educating yourself about how same-sex couples are just as capable of showing love and commitment as opposite-sex couples.

  35. bryce,

    I can’t understand why you’d think slippery-slope isn’t a valid concern. We are a nation governed by laws and legal precedent, and same-sex marriage, believe it or not, sets a dangerous precedent, as Marshal illustrates. It has already been used to justify polygamist marriages. If we’re going to change the definition to suit homosexuals, why not change it to suit polygamists?

  36. brycelancaster says:

    What about same-sex relationships which choose surrogates? I’d say that’s a pretty substantive number of those who wish to have children. They simply mix semen and use artificial insemination. It’s a a bit more technological than how most opposite-sex procreate, but it’s just as effective with the end result… a baby. You can argue that the process is opposite-sex in nature, since it does involve a woman, but the baby was created in order to be raised by a Gay Couple. Without the gay couple, the baby would not have come into existence. (Even simpler for lesbians. Straight couples use sperm banks all the time if the man has trouble with potency and that’s still considered procreation). And what’s even better, every gay couple which chooses to raise a child makes sure that child is wanted, which is better for children growing up.

    Same-Sex relationships can accomplish all the opposite-sex relationships can, there are a few extra steps but the end result is still the same, and that’s what matters ultimately. Whether it’s child rearing by surrogates or adoption, gay couples fulfill the social requirement of having children which you are calling for. Child rearing is a better word than procreation, since there are plenty of straight couples who choose to adopt instead of having kid. Would those couples fit under your expectation of procreation or would they be lesser equally?

  37. brycelancaster says:

    Polygamist marriages are different because changing the number of people involved in marriage is a completely different matter legally. Taxes, divorce, and custody laws would all have to be altered as well. Likewise, how does changing the precedent for gender equal changing the precedent for number of people involved?

    Again, it’s a logical fallacy.

    • Bryce, if the sex of the people is unimportant to marriage, why is the number 2 so important?

      Often slippery slope examples are fallacious. But not here. Every argument for same sex marriage work exactly the same for polygamous marriage. They want to marry whoever they want, they want their relationships to be recognized, etc.

      To deny them, you’d have to resort to special pleading.

  38. bryce,

    What about them? The process still requires a male spermatozoon and a female ovum. Just because the spermatozoon was artificially inseminated into an ovum at the request of a homosexual couple means absolutely nothing. Fact of the matter is, the baby is still the result of a heterosexual union.

    Homosexual relationships cannot accomplish all that heterosexual relationships can without a male and female union (and technology), which should tell you something in itself! Homosexuality is simply a dead-end. Even in your crazy example, a heterosexual union is required. About the only thing heterosexual relationships require is sexy lingerie.

    Anyway, I generally have no problem with gay adoption – right now. On another thread, I’m having a discussion with Marshal Art on the issue. I admit I simply don’t know enough about gay parenting to form a solid opinion, but my initial reaction is favorable to the idea. But I think there needs to be more research. I have some concerns.

  39. Again, it’s a logical fallacy.

    No, it’s not. Before even discussing tax laws and all that, you have to change the definition of marriage, as current tax laws, etc, merely reflect that definition. Changing that definition, therefore, changes everything.

    Now, explain to me why it should be changed for homosexuals but not polygamists?

  40. brycelancaster says:

    And according to your other points, the only thing that should matter to marriage is procreation ability. That’s just not the case anymore. Marriage is about secular legal protections. This is what the debate completely boils down to. I could argue a lot more about how the sexual reproductive habits of gay couples are equal to heterosexual couples, but it wouldn’t matter because that’s not the purpose of marriage anymore. How does society determine who gets those legal protections? If TWO people decide to live together in a committed relationship. All we’re changing is what private parts the two people are required to have, which doesn’t affect their ability to enter into that legal union to gain those benefits.

    Your version of marriage is outdated and no longer applicable to modern day law. And as for the polygamy point, notice how I said TWO up there? You still haven’t explained to me how changing the precedent for gender changes the precedent for number. Probably because it doesn’t. Just like changing the precedent for gender in canada didn’t change the age of consent, or the same-species requirement, or the number of people, nor any other aspect of marriage other than gender.

    If you want my personal opinion, I don’t really see the harm in allowing polygamists to marry as long as everybody consents. I have a problem with a lot of polygamist sects though, because a lot of them abuse and force teenage girls to marry at the ages of 14 and 15. (And I’m not just talking about the Warren Jeffs case, there’s a whole community in southern Utah). If there were more transparency into the Polygamist community I’d open up to it more.

    But my personal beliefs aside, there’s still no evidence that changing gender requirements would change number requirements.

  41. bryce,

    No, my other points went a bit beyond that. Fact is, traditional family units not only procreate, but are the most stable of all relationships – and studies prove this repeatedly. You have a higher percentage of infidelity and domestic abuse in homosexual relationships, and higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases. They simply aren’t as stable as heterosexual relationships and aren’t as beneficial to society.

    Like I said to Marshal, marriage means one thing. It’s not subject to change. It’s precise definition is a union between one man, and one woman, with certain benefits to society. If those benefits are no longer valid, and apparently they aren’t, then let’s do away with the institution.

    You want to change the definition in a way that’s beneficial to you, while polygamists want to change it in a way that’s beneficial to them. In either case, the definition is still being changed. The polygamist could argue that while numbers are changing, genders aren’t. You argue the exact opposite and then expect me to shudder as though you’ve introduced some irrefutable point. Give me a break. The gender of the people is as relevant to the definition as the number of people.

    You don’t see a problem with polygamy? Wow.

    • Terrance,
      “Like I said to Marshal, marriage means one thing. It’s not subject to change. It’s precise definition is a union between one man, and one woman, with certain benefits to society”.

      You seem to be missing the point that definitions do change, have changed, in spite of you saying that it can’t or shouldn’t happen. It already has.

      In a world of absolutes, and the dismissing of the fact that the definition of marriage has already changed, it seems that you are late to the party. No amount of hot air is going to reverse this trend.

      We see again that a biblical world view is being left in the past as a curiosity on yet another social/equal rights issue.

  42. First, I don’t know why people just call others bigots. It’s overused and meaningless. It gives the other side a chance to shout about how it’s an agenda or how they’ve been brainwashed by social media and advocates. It’s kind of like the left and right. The pointless, angry opposition of the other sides opinion.

    The one thing I won’t argue about, is how a “principle moral objection” to same-sex relationships or marriages is more important than equality.

    • Seth and Bryce

      Does equality entail getting whatever you want? Or does it mean being treated the same?

      If the former, then there will never be equality for anyone ever. If the latter, theres already that since marriage licenses arent granted based on sexual desire.

      I cant get married to another man in a state that prohibits same sex marriage even though Im a heterosexual. If I wanted to marry a man for the purposes of the legal benefits, I couldnt. This means I cant marry anyone I want.

      This is what same sex marriage opponents miss. We all have the same rights. You just dont like that we all have the same restrictions as well.

  43. Nash,

    Slavery has existed in nearly every culture in the history of the world. But I imagine you know that already, since you’re not a complete idiot. Why, then, are you so quick to disparage Christians for engaging in that which was incredibly common all over the world, all throughout history? Christians were – how did you say it? Latecomers to the practice.

    Yes, your seething hatred for all things Christian is clouding your judgment, Mr. Nash. My point, in case you missed it, is that while slavery didn’t begin with Christianity, it ended with it. Indeed, it was Christians who ended the practice in the medieval era, replacing it with serfdom, and again ended it in the modern era, from which evolved segregation. No, neither proved to be particularly smooth transitions. Serfdom has its own problems and so does Segregation. But at least the practice of buying, selling, and treating people as property ended.

    These anti-slavery movements were almost entirely Christian, as were the movements to end serfdom and segregation. Christian! To find strength, blacks didn’t turn to John Locke, Voltaire, or David Hume; they turned to God, to the Bible. Yes, while Christians were ending segregation, secular humanists were finding value in eugenics…

    You will no doubt try to argue that it was christians who rescued those rights as well.

    Yes, I will. Treating women as equals also began during the Second Great Awakening.

    Instead of revising history, why not fess up and concede that those anti-liberty practices were part of the socio-political fabric of christian practice?

    Um, because they weren’t. Christians engaged in these terrible practices, yes. But they also ended them.

    Please show where any state government, much less the federal government has argued that they are in the business of promoting procreation or societal stability. Your making an inference.

    Like I said, it began under English Common Law. You should read the link I previously provided.

  44. brycelancaster says:

    Nobody has been able to prove that changing the definition of marriage changes the function. therefore your points are mute.

    You said earlier that by saying that gender isn’t crucial, we’d be encouraging one or more straight parents to abandon homes. There is no proof for this. Again, just because their gay neighbors get married does not mean that Johnny’s father is going to be more likely to leave him. The government would, if anything, be encouraging families to stay together. Current gay couples with children lack government provided stability. There’s no incentive for one gay parent to stay if they aren’t recognized as their child’s parent. Government would still have laws requiring alimony, they would still hold parents accountable to be in their children’s lives. This is the essential reason why judges have been granting gays the right to marry. The opposition cannot prove that doing so harms the institution of marriage. Changes the definition, yes. Harms it? No.

    It’s like if we called Apples the only fruit. The definition of fruit would therefore be that fruit grew on Apple trees. But then we changed the definition to also include bananas. In this scenario, the apple is still a fruit. It still grows on apple trees. It still tastes the exact same. The only difference is that the definition gives the benefits of “Fruit status” to bananas as well.

    Without being able to prove that granting Gay’s the right to marriage changes the function of marriage, you don’t have a basis for denying them the right. And the function of marriage is NOT to procreate. It might have been at one time, but no longer is. It’s to gain legal security for a committed couple.

  45. Nobody has been able to prove that changing the definition of marriage changes the function. therefore your points are mute.

    You have your head in the virtual sand if you believe that. I’ve repeatedly explained that marriage is not merely a legal contract between two people, but a social and civic responsibility. Government sought to promote the traditional family unit, so by changing the definition to include non-traditional families, you’ve changed the function, and nullified the very reason government involved itself in the practice to begin with. I’ve explained this repeatedly.

    Marriage is not, contrary to the ramblings of others, subject to change, otherwise it would be nothing but a legal contract, which we know from history isn’t the case; it’s more than that. This is not a difficult concept.

    You said earlier that by saying that gender isn’t crucial, we’d be encouraging one or more straight parents to abandon homes. There is no proof for this.

    Show me where I made such a statement. I don’t recall saying such a thing and I certainly can’t find where I said it.

    Current gay couples with children lack government provided stability.

    Wait. You’re actually arguing that same-sex marriage should be legal because a lot of gay couples break up? Um, what?

    The opposition cannot prove that doing so harms the institution of marriage. Changes the definition, yes. Harms it? No.

    If homosexuals are allowed to marry, then marriage means nothing. It’s no longer marriage in that case; it’s just a legal contract. Marriage exists as an institution for the traditional family unit, period.

    It’s like if we called Apples the only fruit. The definition of fruit would therefore be that fruit grew on Apple trees. But then we changed the definition to also include bananas. In this scenario, the apple is still a fruit. It still grows on apple trees. It still tastes the exact same. The only difference is that the definition gives the benefits of “Fruit status” to bananas as well.

    Ironic that we’re talking about fruits now…Anyway, as Apples are essential to the definition of Apple Orchard, so too is the Traditional Family Unit essential to the definition of Marriage.

    Your analogy works if we’re talking about relationships generally, but not specific types of relationships.

  46. brycelancaster says:

    I wasn’t talking about you when I talked about someone saying that allowing same-sex marriages would encourage straight families not to be as faithful. That was John that said that.

    You have your head in the sand when you say that marriage is not subject to change. It has changed. That’s where we fundamentally disagree and where every other argument offshoots. People don’t get married because they want to have kids. People get married to gain social and legal recognition of their union. Under this definition, allowing gays to get married does not change the function of marriage. A lot of my friends are getting married with no intentions of having kids. They just want social and legal recognition of their commitments to one another. Whether or not they’re CAPABLE of having kids is not a factor in determining their access to marriage.

    I’m not redefining marriage here to suit my own point. Marriage already has been redefined by society, and that’s where this argument stems from. The government no longer uses marriage to promote procreation, it uses marriage as a way to serve the couples who commit to it.

    And as for my Gay Parents point, I’m not arguing that gays should get married because they break up. I’m arguing that it’s better for kids of Gay Parents. If one parent of a gay child should die, the other might not legally be recognized on that child’s birth certificate as a parent. They could lose custody because they have no legal ties to the child. Something like this happened to an friend of mine I go to clubs with. He and his old partner had a child together, (Surrogate). His old partner decided to end the relationship, but even though they raised the child four years together, my friend had no legal custody to the child because it wasn’t his sperm that they used.

  47. bryce,

    I wish you’d quit saying that marriage has changed. It hasn’t. It’s still a union between one man and one woman. Government in recent years no longer promotes marriage for its orginal intent, but that doesn’t change the definition of negate its original purpose. It also doesn’t change the fact that government passed the Defense of Marriage Act not so long ago. Obama is the only president in recent years that treats the original intent of marriage as some sort of archaic notion.

    But we wouldn’t want to muddy the waters with facts, now would we?

    Marriage isn’t the only way to ensure parental rights.

    • Terrance,
      Your presupposition, that marriage hasn’t, should’t and can’t change is bizarre. I have to ask why exactly you are so absolutely tied to the old world view and use of the term. DOMA was struck down, it’s gone. It isn’t coming back until culturally the country devolves back into a theocratic plutocracy or some such version of one. Until then, the increasing tide of states that recognize gay marriage as fact, continues unabated.

      Did you read the Windsor SC ruling? There is no legal way to keep homosexuals from marrying. No slippery slope exceptions will hold water anymore. The 28 states who have a definition of hetero marriage in their constitutions has no legal standing. The federal Constitution trumps it via the Supremacy Clause. The pipe dream of nullification by the states is also not going to play a role. It is legally impossible. They already tried that.

        • Yeah, that piece of tripe has been circulating for a while. If you care to learn a less revisionist and infinitely more accurate telling or pre and post Reconstruction history and the place that christian conservatives occupied, beyond party boundaries, a friend of mine teaches this very pice of history at BU.

          Imagine if I gave you a blog post from someone re-telling LGBT history from the president of the LGBT Institute…..do you think you would measure that in any reasonable way? It’s biased from the outset because someone is using their power, position, status etc to define a better position in history. Some call it propaganda.

          Try to imagine that you could view American history in a way that would allow for the study of the KKK, except they were atheists, or secular humanists instead of christians/baptists/protestants. Try to imagine a world view in which the white, christian males were not responsible for the slave trade, or making blacks and women second or third class citizens.

          The only way to that past is through imagination. The world in front of us does not need to be paved with the same melodramatic clinging to socially stifling OT dogma. You can still believe and worship your god. Marry who you want on your terms. Have zero abortions. No one will ever force you to do these things, so why try to continue to force others to your world view? Why not be contented with the joy, and love that you have in your life?

          Doesn’t the book of Romans-13 say to obey the government because that government is a construct of your god?

  48. I work far too many hours away from the internet to allow for keeping up with the conversation. Even now, I am merely awaiting the women folk to get their acts together so we can leave for a family gathering elsewhere. Thus, I wish to make one point:

    I do not think anyone gets married in order to gain social and legal recognition of their union. Couples get married as a way to prove to each other the depth of their commitment to each other. I don’t know anyone who has thought in any other way regarding why they were getting married. To gain social and legal recognition? Nonsensical and not in tune with reality? I don’t know any one who gave a flying rat’s ass about social and legal recognition, especially to the extent that it was a primary, or even secondary motivation for tying the knot. This is a truly weak bit of propaganda for SSM.

  49. brycelancaster says:

    You said it yourself Marshalart, couples get married to prove their commitment to one another. Not to procreate. That’s the social recognition that I’m talking about. It’s not just how others view your relationships, it how you view it. Gay couples wish to get married to affirm their relationship for each other, for society, and for the government. That’s social and legal recognition.

    How has marriage not changed? This seems to be the baseline for every argument that SSM opponents use, that the definition of marriage is to promote procreation. But Marshalart even admitted that people get married, first and foremost, to affirm their relationships to each other. That’s the definition and function of marriage today, and where your argument falls.

  50. Nash,

    Your presupposition, that marriage hasn’t, should’t and can’t change is bizarre. I have to ask why exactly you are so absolutely tied to the old world view and use of the term. DOMA was struck down, it’s gone. It isn’t coming back until culturally the country devolves back into a theocratic plutocracy or some such version of one. Until then, the increasing tide of states that recognize gay marriage as fact, continues unabated.

    I have no doubt that people try to change marriage. In fact, that’s precisely what this conversation is about. But my argument is that marriage is one thing by definition, like an apple tree is one thing by definition, like a bottle of wine, a cellular phone, a laptop, a book, a lawsuit, et cetera…It’s meaning is specific and tied to the traditional family unit of one man, one woman. That’s what marriage means! It’s what it has meant for the past 4,500 years, and has always meant in Western society.

    I’d also like to point out that I am NOT in favor of prohibiting homosexuals from obtaining legal recognition. I say do away with marriage completely and issue civil unions to all couples.

  51. “You said it yourself Marshalart, couples get married to prove their commitment to one another.”

    But this fact does not require that the state recognize the union. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the state recognizing the union. My marriage is not dependent upon state recognition or the social recognition. My commitment, my vow to my wife, is entirely independent of that legal or social recognition.

    As is evident by the moral decline of our culture, taking a vow is not as binding as it once was for far too many people. Certainly state licensing is no shackling of any man to any woman. But it was, and is supposed to be, that vow taken by each that binds one to another. Honorable people do not lightly regard the taking of a vow and no promise of financial benefits impacts the primary reason for taking the vow in the first place. I would be suspicious of any who do as it would put the sincerity of wanting to commit in doubt. Indeed, a true devotion to another would not be contingent upon financial gain of any kind. A vow taken with no nod to financial gain, as in “for poorer as well as richer”, suggests true commitment.

    That the state recognizes a value in keeping together unions of the type most likely to produce children by merely coming together sexually is irrelevant to the vow taken by and between the members of that union, even if state recognition requires a public restatement of that vow.

    The notion that the definition of “marriage” might be changing is a case where change has taken place without any real and serious discussion of whether or not it should. To whatever extent such discussion takes place at all, it focuses on aspects totally unrelated to why the state supports marriage, as it has always been defined, at all. That reason, based upon the procreative aspects of the sexual union of men and women, remains as important and as unique a reason for state involvement as it ever has, if not more so (considering the overall moral decline of the culture). Without that reason existing, there IS no reason for the state to give a flying rat’s ass as to who shacks up with whom.

    But just as adamant as I am that the traditional definition of marriage must remain intact, I am just as adamant that state licensing and sanctioning of those unions remain intact as well, unaltered by the whims and whining of such a tiny percentage of squeaky wheels. I do not believe that the state should give the same recognition to any other relationship in the manner it does to man/woman unions of the traditional marriage because of its unique and distinct nature. This has nothing to do with whether or not homosexuals should be “allowed” to be homosexuals and engage sexually or in any other way with other homosexuals over the age of consent. Most people simply no longer care how twisted some people may be, if only they’d both shut the hell up about it and leave the kids alone.

    The objection to polygamous as stated below…

    “Polygamist marriages are different because changing the number of people involved in marriage is a completely different matter legally. Taxes, divorce, and custody laws would all have to be altered as well.”

    All that changes as well with the toleration of homosexual marriages. I believe you were the one who mentioned 1100 benefits, all which would now have to change to allow for homosexual unions.

    The mistake is in assuming that despite you rejecting one criteria for marriage to serve your desires, that being the one man/one woman requirement, that others, such as the polygamous or incestuous, have no right to demand criteria changes to suit their demands and desires. That’s rather bigoted and discriminatory, don’t you think? Especially given the fact that all of your arguments serve them equally well, and they are using them now. Thus, we’re seeing more than just an assumption of a slippery slope.

  52. brycelancaster says:

    “I do not believe that the state should give the same recognition to any other relationship in the manner it does to man/woman unions of the traditional marriage because of its unique and distinct nature”

    This was the essential point I got out of that entire argument. But the problem with this is that allowing SSM does not harm the nature of man/woman marriages, which is what your statement is implying. if it does not harm that unique nature, then why not give the same recognition if there are no negative effects? That’s where every argument comes back to. You all say that changing the definition of marriage is wrong, but nobody is able to prove how changing the definition would have a negative effect. It’s all a matter of semantics.

    You also stated that there’s no reason for the governments to give a flying ass about marriage if procreation is no longer an issue. But our society has evolved to a point where the importance of marriage is so ingrained in all of us from an early age that it means much more than a chance to procreate. This is why the definition of marriage has already changed. It’s not about procreation anymore.

    Essentially, the point I’ve been reiterating over and over again is that SSM does NOT change the function of marriage. It doesn’t have any negative effects on marriage, which is why opponents of SSM have lost in every court battle for the past year. Look at Canada, where SSM has been legalized for quite some time. How has two men getting married violated the marriages of men and women? Newsflash: it hasn’t.

    And as for your final little tidbit about homosexuality being twisted…. THAT’S why you people get called bigots. And the note to stay away from children was a nice touch. Raising kids in a household where parents don’t approve of SSM is a toxic environment for them, much like indoctrinating them into religions. I feel genuinely sorry for any kids which you have or may choose to have. People like you are the ones who should stay away from children. At least when gays have children either through surrogacy or adoption, every child is wanted. And will always be loved no matter how God made them. That’s not something every child is guaranteed in a household like yours, which makes my heart weep.

    I’m done replying to this thread, because I feel like at this point I’ve just been reiterating every single point and it’s turned into a debate of semantics. There’s only so much I can say until I reach a wall where old prejudices refuse to hear reason. I genuinely hope this was an enlightening experience for all, (I know it was for me). If I really feel the need to make a new point, I’ll hop back in. But I hope that if minds aren’t opened up, hearts are.

  53. “if it does not harm that unique nature, then why not give the same recognition if there are no negative effects?”

    There’s no point in doing so that is compelling enough to warrant the change. Yet, it does harm that unique nature is that defined by its participants. It no longer is the same thing when you change the makeup of the union from what it truly is and by which it is defined. If you start calling your cat a dog, it changes what it means to be a dog. You’ve effectively harmed the notion of what a dog is by including something that was never regarded as a dog before, nor is by definition a dog. One doesn’t treat a cat like one treats a dog because they are not the same. A same-sex union is not the same as a hetero union, yet you demand it be treated the same. But that’s not twisted to you.

    “This is why the definition of marriage has already changed. It’s not about procreation anymore.”

    This is foolishness. It denies the reality and looks at it from the wrong end. The desire for any couple to have children is NOT why the state gives its sanctioning. It gives its recognition because the hetero union is of the type that is likely to produce children, regardless of whether or not there is a conscious intention to procreate. This simple distinction seems quite lost on advocates of SSM.

    “It doesn’t have any negative effects on marriage, which is why opponents of SSM have lost in every court battle for the past year.”

    This is untrue. Opponents lose because their compelling arguments are dismissed as having no merit without the merits of the arguments ever having been truly debated. What’s more, proponents win because they are required to provide compelling arguments of their own. As indicated, they have never been denied the right to marry, but only denied the right to dictate what a marriage is. So the whine about equal rights has been a sham given more weight than it has ever deserved for reasons never truly explained or articulated. Activists and enablers have only argued “Because!”

    “And as for your final little tidbit about homosexuality being twisted…. THAT’S why you people get called bigots.”

    Well, that’s a twisted application of the term “bigot”, because it doesn’t fit. Homosexual attraction is indeed “twisted” (or “dysfunctional” if you prefer a less colloquial term) based on human biology. The two genders are meant to be together for sexual purposes. That homosexuals can’t handle acknowledge this truth without demonizing those who do also denotes some level of mental or emotional issue. Yet, while I believe it is not beyond the realm of possibility that homosexual attraction is a manifestation of dysfunction, saying so is NOT a statement of bigotry or hatred. But as John’s primary question suggests, you are not willing to regard opposing opinion without calling people nasty names. This is sad.

  54. Wow, I’ve read this entire thread and not a single new argument, just a rehashing of the same old same old. I had my hopes up. Bottom line? Equal protection/14th amendment.

    • Wow. You’ve read this entire thread and offered not a single argument justifying a change in marital law. Just another tired reference to “equal protection/14th amendment”.

      • brycelancaster says:

        Equal protection/14th amendment IS a valid reason to change marital law. That’s what changed the interracial ban on marriage. That’s what changed voting laws. That’s what changed segregation laws. If you don’t think that the Equal Protection clause is a valid enough reason to change a law in America, than you obviously don’t understand America at all.

        If the federal government involves itself in something, it has to treat every citizen equally UNLESS there is compelling reason not to. Tradition is not a compelling reason. In order for the federal government to treat a group of people differently from everybody else, it must be proven that treating them equally harms everybody else. Sorry for you, but allowing gays to get married doesn’t harm anybody or anything. Therefore, equal protection is a valid enough reason to change how the federal government treats marriages between genders.

  55. The magic number is 1,138. http://bit.ly/1mOmpZA

    • Which of those benefits are available to incestuous couples, polygamous groups, life long roommates, spinster sisters, people living with a grandparent or even single people?

  56. brycelancaster says:

    Marriage isn’t about HAVING children, it’s about RAISING children. The biggest game-changer for the LGBT community was when studies started coming out showing that they could be just as good, if not better, parents. That’s what a lot of people think swayed Kennedy in the Windsor decision, or at least, it seemed to have the biggest impact on him because he focused on it as a major reason in his vote. You say that they can still get the benefits of marriage without calling it “marriage”, but you’ve essentially reduced it to a semantics debate at that point, and there’s a societal recognition that comes with it.

    The problem I have with the argument, “Just give them the same benefits without calling it marriage!” is that it’s still degrading. That’s like saying, “Let blacks and whites both have their own water fountains. They can look the exact same and be located in the same place, but let’s not let them mix, that’ll change our definition of what water fountains are”. Up until the 1950’s and ’60s, in the south, Black’s weren’t allowed to use the same facilities as whites. It was a traditional societal expectation. Using “Separate but equal” obviously didn’t work out. The correlation is strong. Allowing blacks to start using the same facilities as whites didn’t weaken those facilities.

    Only commented because I still get tagged in posts on this specific thread. I left because while I can value some points you guys make on here, I still think you all are clueless on how offensive you can be. And you can blame that on me be “sensitive”, I can’t fault you on not wanting to see your own flaws. The policies I support don’t alter your lives, the policies you support have an exponential effect on mine. I have much, more more to lose if the policies I support don’t win out, and when you take that side, in the callous manner that you all are ought to do sometimes, it creates a toxic environment.

  57. I think it is helpful to think of an analogy that I heard not long ago. I don’t recall the context in which it came up, but the point related to changing things. It is this: If we come upon a fence that stands in our way, it is our first instinct to want it removed. But we can’t simply remove it without first knowing why it was erected in the first place. Is to keep things in, out or both? Does it divide two areas to indicate ownership, or is it there for aesthetic purposes? What might happen if we remove it without knowing its purpose?

    I don’t see that SSM proponents have ever cared to ask why marriage laws are crafted as they always have been in this country in the first place. Or after asking, they could not honestly provide an argument for why their unions align so they’ve ignored them or dismissed them on the unsupported grounds that those reasons have no merit.

  58. Lance, you write, “More than likely, and this is the most important point, it’s not the gender of the parent that matters, but rather the presence of them.”

    It’s obvious why this possibility would be useful to one side’s argument, but it’s not at all clear why it would be probable. On the contrary,it seems to contradict the premise behind the message that those who feel same-sex attraction would never be happy in a conjugal relationship with someone of the opposite sex.

    What makes you believe that it’s “cruel and ignorant” to expect one’s partner to be a particular sex, while simultaneously believing that the sex of one’s parents is wholly irrelevant to their development and well-being?

    What makes you think that the parental relationship is essentially androgynous but the romantic relationship must not be androgynous? Why insist that “husband-husband” is so radically different than “husband-wife” that a man who desires the former CANNOT accept the latter as a substitute, when you also believe that “father-son” is no different than “mother-son”?

    • brycelancaster says:

      Bubba, I am saying that forcing someone to raise kids with someone who they aren’t compatible with is cruel. And a large part of compatibility is sexual chemistry and romantic interest. Would you be willing to marry, be monogamous with, and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you’re repulsed by? It’s much easier to be in a partnership with someone who you enjoy spending time with, both non-sexually and sexually. It’s better for the parents, and therefore better for the children.

      That doesn’t deal with gender roles, which in terms of parenting aren’t crucial either way for a child’s success. Two women raising a child offer just as much as two men or a woman/man pairing.

      So the difference is that in terms of coupling, it’s important to couple with someone who you’re compatible with on all levels, in order to give yourselves the best chance for longevity. That doesn’t just have to do with gender, but also personalities, interests, hobbies, religious views, and life goals. But in terms of child rearing, gender doesn’t play much of a role. The reason it plays a role in terms of coupling is merely for compatibility purposes. Me, as a gay man, would never be able to be comfortable in a long term relationship with a woman. I get along great with girls, and all of my best friends are girls, but there’s a BIG difference to how you interact with your friends and how you interact with your romantic other. I’ve dated guys who were in two-year long relationships with women and were miserable the entire time. It’s not a healthy pairing if one partner is miserable the entire time. It doesn’t have to do with gender ROLES, (which is what is involved with gay parenting), but rather gender attraction.

  59. @Bryce—-

    “Society is quickly coming to an understanding that homosexual actions and homosexual desires go hand in hand, to expect them not to is cruel and ignorant,”

    You do realize that for some, the desire to bash homosexuals and the act of bashing homosexuals goes hand in hand as well, don’t you? To expect them not to is cruel and ignorant, then isn’t it? Or the pedophile actions and pedophile desires go hand in hand, too. Or adulterous desires and actions. Or any desire and the actions that flow from them. You are arguing for the justification and acceptance of every action that flows from a desire.

    Also, from one who just spoke of the offensiveness of your opponents’ comments, you just called us all ignorant and cruel for merely expecting that people control the actions their desires compel. We do the same with any number and variety of people who behave badly. Mature people do not justify their actions because “that’s the way they are” or because they feel like acting a certain way and damn it that should be good enough for anyone to allow and accept it.

    “look at the destruction of ex-gay ministries”

    You both overstate the reality and also justify your position because others are now corrupted as well. That’s like saying that cheating on your taxes is OK because so many people do it as well. Mature people don’t do that.

    “Equal protection clauses also protected interracial couples for what they desired, for actions that they wanted to take.”

    Not at all. They were found to be worthy of protection because skin color, like eye or hair color, has no relevance to the one man/one woman dynamic of real marriage and family.

    “There has to be reasonable evidence that suggests that granting people the ability to carry out that action harms others.”

    Not at all. There has to be a reason given for why the state must pretend there is no difference between two different things and thus must treat them as the same. You’re simply refusing to acknowledge why the fence was built in the first place before deciding to tear it down or alter its appearance or makeup. This is not mere tradition, though we refer to “traditional” marriage. There is a specific reason why the state takes interest in a specific type of union. How can those of a different type of union demand that the state MUST take interest where the state sees no inherent cause for it to take interest?

    “But allowing slaves their freedom only increased our ideas of human worth, just as allowing gays the right to marry only enhances the idea of marriage.”

    A very weak assertion given the fact that these two areas are so completely unrelated an dissimilar. First, slaves were freed because of those who already recognized their worth as humans. By allowing other types of unions state sanctioning dilutes the idea of marriage to mean whatever any alternative group insists it must. There is no enhancement whatsoever. Indeed, the opposite of what you say is true should the true definition of marriage be upheld and honored as it once was.

    “… just because the traditional definition of marriage required the ability to procreate does NOT mean that we shouldn’t change that definition to meet modern societal needs.”

    As the procreative potential inherent in the typical hetero coupling was a primary, if not THE primary, reason for state interest in marriage, there is otherwise no reason compelling enough for state interest at all.

    “the traditional definition of marriage needs improvement for modern society.”

    This is no more than just one more assertion without basis. You think it needs to be so, thus it is so. But mature people don’t do things that way. It also requires ignoring the reason the state takes interest in the first place, or presumes that reason for interest has no merit. Perhaps, but an actual argument is required to further the notion. I don’t think you’ve got one or we’d have heard it by now. There’s no comparison with a woman being able to drive a truck so therefore she should not be denied the right to a truck driving job. No man can be a mother, nor can a woman be a father. Some roles are sex specific and if you wish to argue traditional roles, you must at least deal with what those roles are specific to the gender. Gender plays no part in the ability to drive a truck. Gender plays incredibly important roles in both the furthering of civilization and the raising of children. Try an apples to apples comparison in your arguments.

    “There has to be evidence showing that allowing it TO apply causes harm to society.”

    Not true, especially here. There is an extreme “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” dynamic at play here. The law as it stands serves us well and always has. But at the same time, there is harm and we’re seeing it in spades, and it’s only just begun. Religious freedom is infringed upon in business. People have lost their jobs for supporting traditional marriage. As my link from the previous post demonstrate, there is harm to the family concept and the children raised in homes minus a father or mother. More importantly, you put the burden on the state to accept without cause that it must find cause to take interest in that which does not provide that cause. What’s more, to presume there is no harm in treating different things as if the same is illogical and irrational.

    “The idea that it goes against the traditional definition isn’t a valid enough reason to encode it into law.”

    That’s not an argument being made, which is a huge problem in this debate, as the pro-SSM side insists on fighting against various arguments and positions not employed by their opponents.

    “You have to be able to show that the traditional definition is still the best definition to use in modern day society.”

    This has been done repeatedly, and has not been rebutted in any substantive manner. Instead, it hasn’t failed under judicial review. It has been rejected without debate. It has been rejected without a counter argument (with evidence in support) having been put forth at all.

  60. @Bryce—

    “…that link you posted to the studies about homosexual parenting still fall short of proving that homosexuals make BAD parents.”

    While I have personal reasons for believing that homosexual parents make bad parents that go beyond the data of the studies to which I’ve linked, you again debate against an argument not being put forth. The argument is that what is best for children is to be raised by their biological parents, followed by parents of both gender (as in step, foster or adoptive parents consisting of one man and one woman acting as father and mother). You also fail to understand that exceptions to a general rule to not render the rule deficient.

    I referred to that link in order to demonstrate that what you put forth as compelling for the purpose of judicial review and opinions are horribly flawed and the judges and justices citing those studies were wrong to base their decisions upon them. This is especially true with better studies available demonstrating the best environment for children, which should stand as the far more preferable angle from which a judge should draw his evidence for forming his opinions. Referring to the flawed and self-serving studies critiqued in the article demonstrates bias on the part of the judges in question and also demonstrates that the welfare of children weren’t truly of great concern.

    Once again, no one suggests that homosexual couples can’t raise kids well. But exceptions to rules are not how laws are or should be crafted. Even with the most restrictive laws and guidelines relating to kids and adoptions, there could still be a scenario that finds a homosexual couple the best available home for a kid. That still doesn’t mean homosexuals should be considered equal to a father/mother option, or that society should pretend there is no difference. There clearly is and all the best available data supports this. So even if we can find that children have come out of such situations perfectly well adjusted, that still doesn’t mitigate the fact that most don’t and that the best environment for kids begins with the father/mother type of family structure. Our side looks at the issue from the kids’ perspective, putting their needs above the needs of whatever adult group wishes to raise them, regardless of the orientation. Your side looks only at the demands of the homosexual couple as of primary importance regardless of what is best for the kids.

    “And through all the different samples of all the different studies, that’s a lot of good parents.”

    Actually, with all the studies reviewed put together, that’s not a lot of parents at all, much less good ones. The extremely small sample sizes dictate that there cannot be “a lot of good parents”. What’s more, the argument being made is that the studies lacked any randomness that is present in good studies, with selectivity tainting the results. If all one is looking at are the best examples, then the results cannot help but look good for homosexual parenting. That isn’t science. That’s stacking the deck.

    On the other hand, studies that look at what is best for kids have used far larger samplings, they compare apples to apples (good single mothers to bad single mothers, for example) and look at the results. Some of the pro-homosexual studies involved looking at households where the children are still under the parents’ care and unable to determine their own outcomes because they are still in the process. The Regnerus study, as well as a more recent Canadian study, looks at the adult children of homosexual parents and judges outcomes at that point. That is far more indicative of the impact of two parents of the same gender, just as comparisons between intact father/mother parenting vs single parents better measure the differences there.

    As to the Regnerus study, the article provides support within the scientific/scholastic community that responds to charges that his was a flawed study, and Regnerus himself speaks plainly within the study of the its own shortcomings. You don’t see that honesty and forthrightness in any of the pro-homosexual parent studies. In short, the Regnerus study is far more reliable a measure of homosexual parenting than any of the 59 studies reviewed in that article or even all of them put together. And that’s true without accounting for the studies that do not focus on sexual orientation of the parents, but only on the benefits of an intact biological families. The more recent Canadian study to which I referenced, even went so far as to deal only with those adults who willingly self-identified as having been raised by homosexual parents. Look it up. While you’re at it, look up studies that deal with the impact specifically on daughters with or without fathers. This will give you a better sense of the importance of having each gender present throughout childhood development. Five women running a household cannot provide to a daughter what only a father can provide. This is the important element in these studies regarding parenting. Two lesbians or two homosexuals simply do not compare and equate with two parents of each gender. Even the very thought of it is obviously so.

    I have to say that based on your response, you have not studied the article to which I linked, and certainly haven’t gone through all the links in their entirety. You won’t like going through it, I have no doubt, as it will expose to you what you don’t want to know. But the whole debate is not about what homosexuals want, or what those who oppose them want. It’s about what is best for the culture. You’ve demonstrated no enhancement to the culture that SSM provides and it is clear there is no downside to the culture denying the demand.

    • brycelancaster says:

      I have gone through those arguments, and I still stand by what I have said. You’ve said the same thing over and over again without a single shred of evidence to back it up. I do agree with you on one point… we have to do what’s best for our culture. And that’s emphasizing a culture in which ALL types of families are recognized, validated, and upheld, as long as those families provide equal opportunity for children’s success. I have a hard time believing that you said that the Regenerus study is more valid than the 59 other studies showing that gays make good parents, because the Regenerus study didn’t even study the children of same-sex couples. It studied the children of hetereosexual couples where one parents later came out as gay. of course those children would have been negatively effected! But the study didn’t research the effects of same-sex couples raising kids from the start. To claim that it’s somehow more valid than the other 59 studies showing that gays make good parents, even if those studies were conducted with a more enthusiastic base, is absolutely absurd. Unfortunately for you, I have done my research. And it doesn’t hold up. Those 59 studies aren’t perfect, but they researched a valid base and came up with the result that homosexual couples CAN make good parents.
      And yes, they can be ideal parents as well, because every child in a homosexual household is a WANTED one. Over half of children born in heterosexual households are unplanned http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/FB-Unintended-Pregnancy-US.html. HALF. Would you say that’s an ideal situation for children? Shouldn’t children be born into households which are ready and want them? Shouldn’t that be THE IDEAL? Well, if everybody here is so concerned about making the institution of marriage match the ideal, I’d say that 50% of unplanned pregnancies in heterosexual households is a BIG problem. That’s not a problem in homosexual households. In that way, a homosexual household is the ideal.
      I also, taking back to the first part of your post, am taken aback by your comparison of pedophelia, gay bashing, and homosexual acts themselves. Two of those things are not like the other. Two of them involve lack of consent. It’s offensive to compare them. We expect people to hold back those desires because it involves a lack of consent on the other party’s part. Homosexual couplings are with the consent of ALL involved, and do no harm to society. Just like if two tattooed people want to get married, they can. It was their choice to get tattoos. They weren’t born with tattoos on their skin. But their decision to get tattoos harmed no one, and doesn’t effect their parenting styles.
      Every point you make, Marshal, goes back to the idea that two women cannot teach a child the same skills that a man can. But the only statistics you’ve used, and which those studies used, were statistics coming from fatherless, single-parent homes. Those CANNOT be applied to same-sex couples, because they don’t prove that gender matters. They prove that the presence of the parents matter. That’s where the arguments fall.
      And as for the Canadian study… just like the Regenerus study, it’s severely flawed.
      http://familyinequality.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/the-douglas-allen-study-of-canadian-children-of-gaylesbian-parents-is-worthless/
      http://www.skepticink.com/humanisticas/2013/10/14/no-children-of-same-sex-parents-do-not-have-lower-graduation-rates/
      I assume it was the Douglas Allen study you were talking about? Seems like he had all the problems from the 59 gay-friendly studies that you criticized. Not only was he biased from the start, (sitting on NOM’s council), he had the same problem with sample sizes that the article you posted was harping on about the pro-gay studies.

    • It leaves the question, which parent is expendable? Which parent does a child not need? Homosexual men adopting are sending the message that a kid doesnt need a mother and woman model in the home, and vice versa for lesbian couples.

      • brycelancaster says:

        Your right John, it is sending a message that a kid doesn’t need a woman AND male role model in the house to become successful in life. Just like a kid doesn’t need their parent to be a scientist in order to become a scientist. Or a kid doesn’t need their parent to be a fashion designer in order to become a fashion designer.

        I disagree with you that it’s saying that a parent is expendable. That’s false. The GENDER of the parent is expendable. It doesn’t matter whether a child is raised in a family with a mom & dad, a mom & mom, or a dad& dad. As long as the child is raised in a two-person family, he or she is given the greatest opportunity to succeed in life.

        • The GENDER of the parent is expendable. It doesn’t matter whether a child is raised in a family with a mom & dad, a mom & mom, or a dad& dad.

          And this is of course utter nonsense that has been disproved by a multitude of studies.

        • brycelancaster says:

          Thanks for citing the studies Terrance. Or did you? In fact, the only studies I’ve see people frequenting this blog posting are the Regenerus and Allen studies, both of which have been widely panned by the scientific community.

          The only studies which any one here has relied on has been ones of single-parent households. Those don’t apply in the SSM debate because single-parent households cannot be equated to same-gender households.

          Try finding some of those multitude of studies, please? I’m genuinely interested. That is, if you can find any other than Regenerus, (which didn’t study the children raised exclusively in same-sex households), Allen, (who had a HUGE sampling problem in regards to age and whether they live at home or not. He dropped the results from over half of the base), or ones that deal with single-parent households, as opposed to same-sex ones. I really want to see those multitude of studies.

        • brycelancaster says:

          Here are some more interesting articles on the Regenerus and Allen studies, the only two studies which actually show that same-sex parenting is not the ideal for kids.

          http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2013/summer/suspect-science
          http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2013/11/18/2957551/michigan-regnerus-parenting/

          I apologize, I made a mistake in the above sentiment, it wasn’t 50% of the base which was dropped in Allen’s study. But he DID only take into account homosexual couples in which the children moves around in the past five years, and in where they weren’t legally or biologically related to the head of household. When compared to hetereosexual couples of the same demographic, gay children actually fared BETTER, (with lesbians only a few percentage points worse).

          This is important because if homosexual parents fit into the ideal family structure, then denying them marriage doesn’t make sense. Since marriage is supposed to support, encourage, and uphold the ideal family structure, if gays make just as good of parents, than allowing them to get married continues to support, encourage, and uphold the ideal family structure.

          Those are the only two commonly cited studies which show that same-sex parents are bad parents. They have been throughouly debunked. Every other study in same-sex parenting has shown that they make just as good parents. Every major organization dealing with child welfare agrees with this, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, the American Psychoanalytic Association, the National Association of Social Workers,the Child Welfare League of America, the North American Council on Adoptable Children, and the Canadian Psychological Association, (I have links for all of those)

          The only studies left are ones of single-parent households, which again, in our legal system, cannot be fairly equated to same-sex households because of the different number of parents. It doesn’t hold up underneath the scientific process.

          Like I said earlier, if gay’s make just as valid parents, than withholding the ability to get married from them doesn’t make sense, since marriage is supposed to be about encouraging the most successful family structures.

  61. brycelancaster says:

    Also, Marshall, if you see this, I would like to apologize for calling you ignorant. I left because of name-calling and I came back just as bad. You’ve obviously all done a lot of research and spent a lot of time formulating arguments and the last thing you deserve to be called is ignorant. I won’t lie and say it’s not offensive when I see people trying to deny a group of people privileges based off of what I view as flawed logic, because it is sometimes. My friends and I have a lot to lose here. The ability to recognized as equal couples and even more importantly, the ability to start families with the spouse of our choosing. When people went to the ballot boxes to vote against gay marriage, every slip in the ballot box was another obstacle to me ever being able to be a father, (and considering the fact that I will never be a father with an opposite-sex spouse, being a father with a same-sex spouse is the only way I will ever be a father). So it is sometimes easy to lose my cool, and I apologize.

  62. Bryce,
    You say that the Regnerus and Allen studies have been widely panned by the scientific communities. This is untrue. They’ve been widely panned by the pro-homosexual faction of the scientific community. And if you had actually read all of the rather voluminous post to which I linked from BaseballCrank.com, you’d have seen that Twenty-seven scholars signed a joint letter defending Regnerus’ sample selection. Allen’s study gave the subjects the room to specify the circumstances of their childhood so that Allen wasn’t selecting the subjects based only his own criteria. These two far more detailed studies which drew data from an incredibly larger pool than any of the 59 studies upon which SSM proponents hang their hats, have not been found to be flawed in their methodology, despite each having, like all studies do, their own limitations and shortcomings. Worse, you judge them by far stricter standards than you do those that purport to provide you with the study support you need. But any other study done on any other topic in the manner of the 59 you prefer would never be held up as sufficient to prove anything, so lacking they are in honest and professional standards of research. I encourage you to study that link again, but with something more than the cursory look you’ve given it thus far.
    In the meantime, it didn’t take me long to find the following that deals with the significant benefit to childhood development from having both a mother and a father.
    This is a compilation of results from several studies dealing with the significant differences between fathers and mothers.
    This is an article from Focus on the Family, so no doubt you’ll dismiss it without reading, but the conclusions are culled from several unrelated sources cited in the footnotes.
    Here’s an interview with a researcher on the subject.
    And here’s a peer reviewed paper
    The point here is that there are plenty of studies and research papers available that confirm the importance of both a mother and a father in a child’s development.
    As to your last comment, I insist that it is your position, the pro-SSM position, that rests on flawed logic, and extremely flawed at that, across the board. What’s more, I’m confident I can match any argument you might try to put across and provide far more in the way of logic, truth, facts and reason every step of the way. I stand ready to meet any challenge at any time.
    You say you have a lot to lose. That’s true of anyone who wants what they can’t or shouldn’t have, but wants it badly. I understand that and I doubt anyone exists who doesn’t have a sense of that “loss” in their own lives. But that isn’t an argument. It’s a tantrum.
    You speak of the ability to be recognized as equal to man/woman unions and to be able to start families in a manner of your choosing. But so do those who favor multiple partners, as we see in the recent story of three lesbians who have “married” each other and plan for each to become pregnant. So would a guy who wants to marry his sister or mother. So would a woman who wants to marry a 13 year old kid. They all must deal with the same obstacle that you do, which is that the state has reason to take interest in man/woman unions that it doesn’t perceive in any other type of relationship.
    You say this: “considering the fact that I will never be a father with an opposite-sex spouse, being a father with a same-sex spouse is the only way I will ever be a father”
    Regardless of what you might say or think, this is a choice you make. It is a fact that you could, given time and opportunity, find a suitable mate of the opposite sex with whom you could have an incredibly happy and fulfilling relationship. Instead, you choose to satiate your lust primarily. Not unusual, as this is true of most people. Except that with heteros, the object of lust is normal. The real issue, however, is that lust is not the important part of choosing a mate. Yet that’s what drives most and it drives you and other homosexuals to try and distort the meaning of marriage to suit your lust. Mature people do not choose on lust.

    • brycelancaster says:

      I disagree with you Marshall, mature people do not deny other’s privileges because they are different. I guess people who wanted to marry other races were just giving in to lust, huh? Or people who marry those who they are mutually attracted to are giving in to lust? I imagine that you have a wife… were you two attracted to each other when you married? How willing would you have been to marry another man, if the positions were reversed? I assume you have no interest in coupling with another man for the rest of your life. If homo were the norm, would you do that to yourself? Would you call yourself “immature” for not doing so? And somehow John, in the original post, wondered why people thought he was a bigot. That’s why. A complete lack of understanding and inability to put yourself into anybody else’s shoes.

      Different does not equal bad. In the case of all those links you posted, (and yes, I read them all), the only statistics used to prove the absence of the father or the mother were ones that came from single-parent households. Everything else was mainly reiterating some of the aspects that fathers and mothers TEND to bring to relationships. A father TENDS to be more playful. A mother TENDS to be provide a female role model. A father TENDS to educate girls about how to treat boys. However, nobody proved that in a same-gender household, those same values cannot be taught. Just like in a wealthy home, children tend to have more opportunities for success. They tend to receive more education, and they tend to have better connections. That doesn’t stop us from encouraging poor people via marriage from raising children, because it’s just as possible for those children to achieve great things. Or how a child raised in a family of scientists is more likely to develop critical thinking skills early on, but children raised outside a family of scientists are just as likely to develop those same critical thinking skills. Like those examples, a child raised in a more masculine home is just as likely to develop the effeminate traits that they need to be well-adjusted. Aunts, uncles, grandparents, brothers, sisters, educational programs, daycare centers… all are just as capable of installing those traits into children. Just like how those outside factors can install traits of critical thinking skills into children raised by artists, or traits of aggressiveness in a child raised by pacifists. Or traits of ambition in children raised by parents on welfare. Plus, (it amuses me but doesn’t surprise me), you didn’t address the fact that 50% MORE of children will be planned for in homosexual households. That means that the household is emotionally, financially, and mentally prepared to handle a child 100% of the time. I say that’s a pretty big statistic that balances out those “tendencies”.

      Likewise, another mistake those articles make is that they assign those attributes to genders rather than effeminacy or masculinity. Most women tend to be more effeminate, but most lesbians I know are much more masculine. Likewise, most guys I’ve dated are extremely effeminate. A minor point, but a distinction that I think has to be made. Why is it the genders that matter in those pieces, when the traits of the person are just as likely of an explanation?

      I read that article you posted Marshall. Regenerus did NOT study the children raised exclusively by same-gendered households. Therefore, his findings cannot be used in a debate on whether same-gendered households should be encouraged to exclusively raise children. You cannot spin that any other way, regardless of how much you want to. And the Allen study only goes to further prove my point. When compared to kids raised by hetereosexual couples in COMMON LAW marriages who moved around in the past five years, (in Canada at the time of the study, all homosexual couples were in common law marriages), children raised by gay fathers fared BETTER than their hetereosexual counterparts and children raised by lesbian mothers were only a few percentage points worse, (which, when the control is 3%….). Likewise, Allen only looked at children raised by same-sex couples in the past few years of their lives. Like Regenerus, his studies cannot be used to prove or disprove ANYTHING about children raised by homosexual couples at birth. Allen didn’t compare the same demographics, his findings were absolutely skewed. http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2013/11/18/2957551/michigan-regnerus-parenting/

      The MULTITUDE of studies proving that homosexual couples make just as good of parents are backed by every major secular child welfare association in North America. Yes, the sample sizes were small and can’t be used to speak for EVERY homosexual couple, but they do prove that it is possible for a homosexual couple to be an ideal fit for a children. The children in those studies came out as well-adjusted, or even MORE successful, than their peers. You’re right that the findings can’t be used to completely solve the case on same-sex parentings, but they do prove that some same-sex couplings are able to raise children just as effectively as their opposite-sex counterparts.

      I’m sorry Marshall, I truly am, but we both know the truth. And I know that’s hard for someone raised a certain way their entire lives, to be told that its wrong. But that’s no excuse for continuing to harm other people’s lives to fit into that tiny box that some people were raised in. That, above everything else, is immature. I’m not trying to be offensive when I say that I legitimately view people who oppose same-sex marriage the same way I view those who still cling onto the idea that we should prevent blacks and whites marrying. Not necessarily as bad people, but as misinformed people raised under false values who pose a waning threat to equality.

      • You’re incredible in your level of denial. Almost every sentence of your response demonstrates that you couldn’t have spent much time truly studying the links I’ve provided because your responses to MY comments demonstrate that you haven’t truly done so with them. To wit. your first sentence:

        “I disagree with you Marshall, mature people do not deny other’s privileges because they are different.”

        I never made that argument. I never even hinted at it. And mature people do not misquote those with whom they are engaged in discussion.

        ” I guess people who wanted to marry other races were just giving in to lust, huh? Or people who marry those who they are mutually attracted to are giving in to lust?”

        If you truly read my comments, you would have recognized that I acknowledged the role of lust in bringing people together, that it exists in the uniting of hetero couples all the time. It is also a reason why so many don’t last because they are initially based on lust and never really progress beyond it. The point was, indeed, that basing a relationship on the physical lusting for one another is immature and irrational given the fleeting nature of lust. But allowing lust to dictate decisions is one way homosexuals can truly say they’re no different. Whom they lust after, however? Not so much. But unlike the hetero who lusts after a married woman, or a child, or a sibling or parent, homosexuals presume they have no moral obligation to resist and instead insist they must be allowed to indulge or they’d be “living a lie”. Mature people don’t do that.

        ” I assume you have no interest in coupling with another man for the rest of your life.”

        The issue isn’t whether or not I might, but how I would respond to the desire. I’ll let you pretend to know one way or another in which direction my own lusts run. I’ll only say that I strive to rise above the propensity and compulsion to satiate my every desire in favor of letting reason and common sense take precedence in my behaviors. (I don’t always succeed, but I deal with the consequences of my actions.)

        “If homo were the norm, would you do that to yourself?”

        “Homo” is NOT the norm, so such speculations are irrelevant and of no value. You want to believe that such speculation is necessary to truly walk in the shoes of another for purposes of empathy. But it isn’t the object of desire, but desire itself that is the issue and whether or not it has priority in dictating one’s direction in life. As I said, we all have our lusts and desires with which we must contend. I don’t need to have the same as you to understand the concept. What is immature is defaulting to desire in making such decisions in life, to making desire the most important factor. You favor want over should. Mature people don’t so that. It is not the least bit bigoted to say so.

        “Different does not equal bad.”

        Not an argument being made. How seriously could you have read my comments or links and still come to that conclusion? But YOU’RE trying to argue that differences are insignificant. That they don’t matter, particularly in the raising of children. That’s patent nonsense. I provided one study that indicates children in early infancy begin to notice the difference and respond differently to their fathers as opposed to their mothers. The influence of each parent is incredibly significant, and no, no butch woman equates to a male father figure. No girly-man equates to the influence of a mother. The suggestion is preposterous.

        And it also isn’t significant how many scientific associations agree with your side of the debate if they are all basing their positions on the same incredibly flawed and self-serving studies discussed in the report to which I linked. You also haven’t put forth anything that proves or supports the position that it is the number of parents that matter rather than the gender make up of the parents. This is assertion only. There is also a HUGE difference in having a man around the house as opposed to an uncle, grandfather or neighbor that isn’t constantly present to model behavior for the child throughout its development. A father and mother are constantly interacting in the presence of their children and this constant exposure is key, as is the lack of it for kids deprived of one or the other. THIS is what the studies I’ve presented suggest. The fact that they reference single parent homes is simply the most obvious example that demonstrates the deficiency. Having two, three or four times as many mothers does not make up for lacking a father and the unique attributes a father has. The suggestion that this isn’t true is inane.

        You speak of what is likely. And sure, we can point to many who have not had the benefit of having a successful parent in the home who have managed to succeed on his own for a variety of reasons. But was it likely? It certainly wasn’t AS likely as the success of a child with constant influence of successful parents. What you speak of isn’t a matter of likelihood, but of possibility. Despite the worst of conditions, a child still possesses the possibility and potential to rise above. But in the best of conditions, the child is more likely to do so. Indeed, a child is most likely to succeed if raised in one environment as opposed to another. As regards the effect of parentage, a child is MOST likely to succeed being raised by its own father and mother, all other aspects being equal.

        “Plus, (it amuses me but doesn’t surprise me), you didn’t address the fact that 50% MORE of children will be planned for in homosexual households.”

        What’s truly amusing, but far less unexpected, is that you think this counts as points for your side of the debate. But it also depends upon apples to oranges comparisons to be worth a damn. Compare it against heteros that consciously plan on having kids, instead of all couples that have them regardless of planning.

        “I read that article you posted Marshall. Regenerus did NOT study the children…”

        Once again, the shortcomings of the Regnerus study is acknowledged within the study itself. The comparison that matters here is the sample size, and the fact that the results did not come from homosexual parents still raising the kids knowing the political impact of their responses to surveys. This is a point that is more at the fore in the Allen study. And you still ignore, or regard as insignificant, the many, more important, flaws of the studies to which you believe everyone should pay the most attention. You want to continue highlighting the flaws of studies that don’t work for you, but you minimize to the point of non-existence the serious flaws of studies that don’t. Mature people don’t to that.

        There are no studies that PROVE homosexuals make “just as good” parents as the fathers and mothers of children, or as male/female adoptive parents. All that can be proven (really only suggested) is that some children manage to come out of such environments OK. The only question that really matters is, What is the best environment for children? That question puts the focus where it belongs, on the children. What you and yours ARE doing is to put the focus on YOU regardless of the best interests of the children by trying to insist that there is absolutely no difference to their development. Mature people don’t do that.

        I’m sorry Bryce, I truly am, but we both know the truth, though you deny it and I don’t. And I know that’s hard for someone who wants to live his entire life a certain way, to be told that its wrong. But that’s no excuse for continuing to harm the entire culture by forcing it to accept as true that which clearly is not just to satiate one’s own desires. That, above everything else, is immature. I’m not trying to be offensive when I say that I legitimately view people who support same-sex marriage the same way I view children who can’t have their way, especially when they’re so willing to cling to patently false or weak arguments, such as trying to make the false comparison to past opposition to interracial marriages. Such are indeed bad people, not simply misinformed people, but rather people raised under better values than they now abide, who pose a waning threat to the liberty of others in their false understanding of what constitutes equality.

        • I am sorry too Marshal. Sorry that you have not raised a legitimate point in this entire exchange and continue to try to deny couples the ability to raise children based off of NO solid evidence or reasoning. The fact that you continue to use Regenerus saddens me as well, because it doesn’t matter how big the sample is, what matters is that it did not actually study the children of the situation we are discussing. It’s like saying that a massive study of single-parent households apply’s to same-gender households… apples to oranges, as you would say. It is YOUR side which has the burden of proof when you try to apply statistics of single-parent households to same-gender households. You have to explain how it is the absence of gender, rather than the absence of an entire parent, that makes that statistic valid.

          You also misunderstand me, (that’s not a shocker though). I’m not saying, nor have I ever said, that lust is the end all / be all of relationships. But it’s an important component. Romantic, physical, and sexual chemistry are all aspects in a relationship in which compatibility breeds the best outcome for everybody involved. What matters just as much is personalities, financial and mental stability, interests, and life goals. They are ALL important for happy relationships.

          “I don’t need to have the same desire as you in order to understand the concept”

          Actually Marshall, if you want a thorough understanding, you do. You refuse to put yourself in my shoes, which is a sign of true cowardice. Scared of what you might find? Note, I’m not calling you a coward. But your actions scream of insecurity. You refused to answer the question. What would you do if the positions were reversed? I know what I would do. Give other people the exact same privileges that I enjoy. Would you marry someone and raise children with and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you find physically repulsive? Again, going back to John’s original post, this is why I view people with viewpoints such as yours as bigoted. A complete inability to put yourself in anybody else’s shoes. So I’ll ask again. Would you marry someone and raise children with and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you find physically repulsive?

          “a child is MOST likely to succeed being raised by its own father and mother, all other aspects being equal.”

          Where is your evidence for this? Statistics coming from single-parent households? Or the Regenerus study, which again, didn’t actually study children raised exclusively by same-gendered parents? Sample sizes be damned, it didn’t study the children of the pairs we’re talking about. Doesn’t matter how large it is. Or the Allen study, in which he skewed the demographics to get the result he wanted? You never addressed the point, (unsurprisingly), that when actually compared to common-law marriage raised heterosexual children, children raised by homosexuals faired just as well.

          And those are the only two studies you’re citing for the effects of exclusively raising homosexual children? I never minimized the problems of the 50 studies which showed that homosexuals raise children just as good. The sample sizes were small. But when EVERY major secular child-raising network in North America agrees that homosexuals make just as ideal parents, you have the odds stacked against you, (another thing which you didn’t address, not that I’m counting or anything).

          “What you speak of isn’t a matter of likelihood, but of possibility”

          How is that any different from the children of welfare parents, or of the children of wealthy parents, or of the children of highly intelligent parents, or of the children of low intelligent parents? It doesn’t matter WHAT specific attributes the parents possess, whether it be critical thinking, financial opportunities, masculinity, femininity, or ambition, what matters for the ideal family is that the child is wanted, and that it’s raised in a stable home headed by two parents who love it. THAT is the ideal family, and it’s slightly disgusting that through all of the facts I’ve posted you refuse to see that.

          “Children in early infancy begin to notice the difference and respond differently to their fathers as opposed to their mothers.”

          Does this have to do with gender or the fact that those are the two faces children see the most often?

          You also called my proposition that it’s not gender’s that’s matter but the attributes of masculinity and effeminacy “preposterous”. Why? Those are the traits that originally dictated the gender roles. They are the traits that are the backbone of gender roles. It is the TRAITS that led to the “tendencies” you talked about. Why does one gender have a monopoly on a certain trait? My best female friend is the most blunt, masculine girl I know. She loves roughhousing with her nephews, and hates “girl-talk” about “feelings, and all that crap”. She goes hunting, fishing, and shooting nearly every weekend. Does the fact that she has a vagina and boobs mean that she can’t roughhouse with the boys as much as a boy could, or that she can’t bond with them through physical activities as much as a boy could? (Both were “tendencies” in those articles you posted). Maybe girls can’t be MMA fighters at the same level that boys can, but for playing around with little boys, are they really THAT much more physically incapacitated?

          Please, tell me how same-sex marriage has harmed the entire culture. It’s been legal in both the Netherlands and Belgium for over a decade. Canada, our fellow western country, has had it legalized for nine years now. Massachusetts has had it legal over in the states for the past ten years. Have children been harmed in any of those places? And where is the statistics to prove it? Some politicians have had their careers ruined due to opposition for it. It’s becoming more socially acceptable to talk about it in schools. But how has it negatively impacted the INSTITUTION of marriage specifically? Because if it doesn’t negatively impact the institution of marriage, than the societal fallout of those who oppose it is a just result. Much like the societal fallout of those who opposed women’s suffrage or interracial marriage. You have almost a decades worth of marriages to look over, surely you can find SOMETHING to prove that its’ been harmful. Oh wait, you’ve only used those two studies? Both of which didn’t actually study the children raised exclusively by homosexual couples? Throughout a decades worth of marriages, surely there is SOMETHING else out there. The best way to make your case is by showing how it actually has harmed the culture of marriage. But you haven’t done that. All you’ve done is say that a child needs a father and mother to be in an ideal situation. Well, it’s been legal in a lot of places for a long time now. Surely you can find SOMETHING to back up that claim.

          And if you can’t, and if you are denying these couples equal access to secular privileges based off of old prejudices… well, then you deserve to panned in history books. You deserve to have your kids be ashamed of you. You deserve to be recognized for the bigoted, (going back to the original post), views you hold.

          All the best,

          Bryce

          • Bryce

            Just because you remain uncompelled by anyone’s line of reasoning doesnt mean no legitimate points have been made. Remember you have a vested emotional and psychological reason to reject any argument against your view. That doesnt make your view wrong, just be mindful that you have a strong personal interest in us being wrong.

        • brycelancaster says:

          Don’t all of you us have strong personal interests John? Apparently, allowing gays to continue to be married means that we are “continuing to harm the entire culture”, according to Marshall. But when I ask for the harm to the entire culture… I’ve received two studies which didn’t actually study the children raised exclusively by same-sex couples. I’ve received statistics showing what happens in single-parent homes, and I received what gender roles “tend” to do. But what I haven’t received is how in the past decade of same-sex marriage being legal not just in some Nordic countries but also our western society, how families have been harmed. Or how families have been anything but strengthened. I don’t see the actual harm happening to the institution of marriage. That’s what I mean when I say that I haven’t seen any valid arguments.

          • I dont have a personal emotional investment. It wont make me feel marginalized or unwanted or a second class citizen to have the law change. You and I hold our views for different reasons.

  63. Bryce, I still think it’s inconsistent to be so sensitive about the gender composition of marriage while being wholly insensitive about the gender composition of parenting.

    You claim that gender roles in parenting “aren’t crucial either way for a child’s success.”

    “Two women raising a child offer just as much as two men or a woman/man pairing.”

    That’s simply not true, Bryce. A child needs a same-sex parent to emulate, and a child needs an opposite-sex parent to learn how to interact with adults of the opposite sex.

    Raised by two men, a boy would be deprived of the best teacher of how to treat women, and a girl would be deprived of the best teacher of how to BE a woman. That teacher is the same person in both cases: a mother.

    You’re insisting that “husband” and “wife” are so different that a gay man MUST have the former and cannot be truly happy with the latter, but you’re ALSO insisting that “mother” and “father” are interchangeable.

    That strikes me as inconsistent.

    The more consistent position would be to acknowledge that kids need both a mother and a father, and that shouldn’t be a big deal for you, because — almost as if by design! — the only procreative relationship is one that provides both a mother and father.

    But that leaves no room for same-sex couples to insist on absolute moral equivalency, not only in romantic relationships between adults but also in parental relationships with children. Insisting that the latter is androgynous doesn’t make it so, and at a certain point something’s gotta give, either the needs of the child or the wants of the adult.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Maybe you could try reading my arguments, huh? I said it before and I’ll say it again. The gender of a romantic partner matters due to compatibility reasons. Some men are more compatible with men, some women are more compatible with women, and some men are more compatible with women. However, the gender does not affect your ability to parent. Gender roles are a societal construct that may fit some people, but to say that every women is effeminate or every man is masculine is simply not true. Gender roles are not universally applied, and are not one of those universal concepts to determine the success of raising a child.

      Also, the asinine argument you keep making is that the only way to have a child is through procreation. Want to come say that to my cousin who was conceived through artificial insemination? (They were having trouble conceiving a child through procreation, so they chose a different route which worked). Or how about adoption? You argue that we should have standards for adoption and you’re right, we should. Children shouldn’t be adopted by pedophiles, murderers, people living in unstable environments…. but a loving couple in a stable home who are financially able to support a child which they have no intentions of harming or abusing? To deny that child a home because of the gender of the parents is absolutely cruel.

      • Bryce, I DID mention IVF earlier this morning, in the 9:33 am comment — and I’ll reiterate that, in such cases as adoption and IVF, the child still results from a mother and a father.

        You make a distinction between gender and gender roles, and I think this is the distinction that you’re making:

        – Genders affect romantic relationships but not parental relationships, and they are a biological reality and are therefore very important.

        – Gender roles are what affect parental relationships, and they are mere social constructs and are thus less important.

        You write, “Some men are more compatible with men, some women are more compatible with women, and some men are more compatible with women.”

        1) What do you mean by “more” compatible? Do you mean that EVERY man is at least SOMEWHAT compatible to at least some woman? If that’s the case, then it’s hardly cruel to expect each man to marry a compatible woman rather than a compatible man.

        If you mean, e.g., “some men are ONLY compatible with men,” you should say so.

        2) In what sense are these men compatible? You cannot mean mere desire, because people frequently desire that with which they’re incompatible — that’s how many food allergies are discovered, a person wants to eat shellfish but finds that it disagrees with him.

        You cannot mean physiologically, because the anatomy that is unique to men is incompatible with other men, and the same is true for women. There’s no act that a same-sex couple can perform that a conjugal pair cannot, and many of the acts that the former perform are mere imitations of the one act that is unique to a conjugal pair.

        Do you mean mentally? Emotionally? Psychologically? How can you possibly know that these subjective features are biological facts and not mere social constructs?

        Earlier you wrote, “it’s important to couple with someone who you’re compatible with on all levels, in order to give yourselves the best chance for longevity. That doesn’t just have to do with gender, but also personalities, interests, hobbies, religious views, and life goals.”

        NOTHING you list at the end are unique to one sex or the other — personalities, hobbies, faith, goals, etc. So it’s not at all clear to me that compatibility you mean is biologically intrinsic and not just socially constructed.

        • brycelancaster says:

          When I say that some men are more compatible with men, it means that they click on more levels with men rather than women. It’s easier to work together, live together, get along with each other, and solve problems together. It means they care about each other on both a romantic and a friend level.

          Some men are not compatible with women. This is not an ideal situation for children and to even suggest that is harmful. We’ve seen all the examples of men who leave women and children in order to finally live out a gay lifestyle. This creates broken families, as evidenced in the Regenerus study, (THAT was the actual demographic it studied). Yes, there has been a handful of cases in which gay men proudly say that they are in relationships with women. But a major point on this blog is that we shouldn’t be making exceptions for the extreme minority, (“SOME homosexual couples can raise children effectively, but those are only small sample sizes!”). And we should look at all the gay men who LEAVE relationships with women. The contrast is astounding.Sexual chemistry is VERY important for happy, long-term relationships. Like I said earlier, it’s not the most important aspect. Personalities, life goals, interests, hobbies… they’re all just as or more important. But to deny that sexual chemistry isn’t an aspect in a relationship is to simply deny reality. That’s the only thing that gender has to do with relationships. It’s not the actual gender role that matters, but simply the fact that you enter in a relationship with a gender with which you are attracted to. It’s a piece of the puzzle which makes up a good relationship, but the important thing about building a puzzle is that you don’t leave any of the pieces out. If you’re personalities are completely opposite and you can’t agree on anything, that’s not a good relationship. if you’re life goals are completely seperate and one of you would have to give up your dream for the other, that’s not a ideal relationship. If your hobbies/interests/political views are completely different and you have a hard time agreeing to do anything together… that’s an issue. Just like all of those, being repulsed by your partner’s naked form is not a healthy relationship.

          In terms of parent/child relationships, sexual chemistry isn’t an issue. Therefore, gender isn’t an issue.

        • brycelancaster says:

          And let me clarify, I am not saying that sexual chemistry is the most important aspect of a relationship. But a complete absence of it is not the ideal situation for anybody. I think we all can agree on that.

          For example, in Japan, people often get married to others for financial reasons. Romantic attraction is NOT a big factor in their culture. When the online infidelity site Ashley Madison launched in Japan, it attracted over one million people in eight months. ONE MILLION. Japan is currently the number one user for a site that hooks up married people. Would you say that those relationships are healthy? There has to be SOME level of romantic interest, otherwise families can get torn apart. That’s why I maintain that expecting people to get married to others who they aren’t attracted to does NOT create the ideal situation for anybody.

  64. Bryce, one line in your last comment to Marshall is very revealing.

    When people went to the ballot boxes to vote against gay marriage, every slip in the ballot box was another obstacle to me ever being able to be a father, (and considering the fact that I will never be a father with an opposite-sex spouse, being a father with a same-sex spouse is the only way I will ever be a father).

    A lot of people have given the impression that the issue of marriage is only about the romantic relationship strictly between adults, not the parental relationship involving children, but your writing conflates the two relationships.

    I hope you don’t mind, let me rewrite that parenthetical aside, with the ONLY change being replacing the marital terms (husband and wife, or “same-sex spouse” and “opposite-sex spouse”) with the corresponding parental terms, in bold.

    “[C]onsidering the fact that I will never be a father with a[] mother, being a father with a father is the only way I will ever be a father.”

    One reason I think this entire post-modern experiment has gone off the rails is the need to restate the absolute obvious: children don’t result from a father and a father, they ONLY result from a father and a mother.

    That biological fact cannot be denied, it must be acknowledged even if it can be obscured by social constructs like surrogacy and scientific advances like IVF: no father can provide the egg to be fertilized, no father can provide the womb in which the fertilized egg develops.

    If the biological need for both a mother and a father cannot be avoided, it’s not clear to me why the psychological need for both can be entirely dismissed.

    Bryce, obviously not every child is raised by a mother and a father, either their biological parents or adoptive parents: I was raised by my divorced mother since I was one, and I have since come to terms with the fact that, while I was better off not being raised by an abusive father, part of me needed things that only a caring father could have provided.

    We acknowledge that less-than-ideal arrangements happen all the time, as when a parent dies or when an abusive or otherwise unfit parent really needs to leave the picture, but we still see these as less than ideal.

    As a society we ought not to pretend that these less-than-ideal arrangements are ideal, and we certainly ought not to deliberately build these arrangements on that pretense.

    In your case, reaching your goal of becoming a father with a second father, either through adoption or some sort of surrogacy, will inevitably result in that child’s being deprived of her biological mother AND any sort of adoptive mother.

    Why does your desire to BE a father, as an adult who can make your own decisions, trump her need to HAVE a mother, as a child whose upbringing is entirely at society’s mercy?

    “She doesn’t need a mother” strikes me and a lot of other people as obviously false, and it is, to say the least, awfully convenient that your hypothetical daughter would not need something you’re unwilling or unable to provide.

  65. paynehollow says:

    In the real world, there are some mother/father homes where neither one is especially adept at sports, or at mechanics, or at housecleaning, or at a variety of skills. What do those parents do? They get by the best they can. They send their kids with someone who is more adept at sports. They hire a housecleaner. They make do.

    Now, in father/father homes or mother/mother homes, they do the same thing. Maybe one or the other is not as adept at a particular skill or are lacking something in some way. What do they do? The same thing as opposite sex parents do: They make do. The adapt.

    No big deal, it’s what parents do and that is how it is. The ONLY problem comes when some would attempt to deny the joy and privilege of parenthood to some based on prejudice.

    “Not being perfectly ideal” is no reason to deny parenthood to anyone or any group. If that were the measure, then none of us would be allowed to be parents.

    The lesbian parents I know will often incorporate male role models (if they think that is important) in their children’s lives. Same for the gay parents I know, with female role models. It’s what good parents do. I suggest we step back and encourage good parents to do what they do and, short of actual overt harm, back out of other people’s business and especially trying to dictate parenting preferences via the legal system.

    After all, one could argue that “Religious fundamentalist parents fail to provide children with a balanced look at philosophy and science, therefore, we should not allow ‘those type’ of people to be parents…” but that would be prejudiced and meddling, and that would be wrong.

    ~Dan

  66. Lovely priorities you have, Dan: let children “make do” and “adapt” without a mother or a father, but God forbid we dare suggest that “the joy and privilege of parenthood” should be subordinated to the actual needs of the children.

    But what else should we expect? You already defend the murder of children in utero for the convenience of adults, and so it’s no leap that you care less for the upbringing of those who survive the abortion regime for the self-esteem of adults.

  67. …and, by the way, Dan, the comparison to a religious upbringing overlooks some obvious facts of biology.

    I oppose “meddling” in the work parents do in raising their children in the absence of overt abuse, but I didn’t think same-sex procreation was possible.

  68. paynehollow says:

    Have you heard of adoption, Bubba? There are a great many children out there who’d love to have parents and would not care if they were a single parent, or two moms, two dads or a mom and dad.

    To argue the way you are trying here: Do you really want to deny these orphaned children loving parents? Well, what should we expect? …

    Bubba…

    let children “make do” and “adapt” without a mother or a father, but God forbid we dare suggest that “the joy and privilege of parenthood” should be subordinated to the actual needs of the children.

    Noting that ALL families “make do” is nothing beyond acknowledging our nature as less-than-perfect human beings.

    Are you advocating limiting children only to those couples who are perfect? If so, then kiss goodbye to humanity.

    Noting that there are no perfect parents is not the question here. The question is: Should we seriously give any credence to the notion that we should only “allow” the perfect to be parents? But then, given as that is a ludicrous question, that isn’t the question, either. I guess the question is: On whose authority should we let people butt into other parents’/households’ lives and tell them what they can and can’t do?

    But then, that question has an obvious answer, too: Mind your own business. If you are not actively harming your children, Bubba, I won’t intervene and critique your parenting (short of you asking for advice, which is not likely…). We’re just asking – demanding – the same decency from your side.

    ~Dan

  69. “Mind your own business” about parenting approaches is an odd demand for an arrangement in which procreation is biologically impossible. Children cannot result naturally from those arrangements, and so custody can only result with society’s blessing, as in adoption.

    In the case of adoption, surely you don’t suggest no standards whatsoever, right? Or should I engage in the same sort of strawman argumentation you’re using?

    I think society can recognize that criminal records involving violence or child abuse should preclude a person from being allowed to adopt, without wailing and moaning about how nobody’s perfect. So, you and I don’t disagree that lines must be drawn, only about WHERE to draw them.

    I draw them differently than you do, so you like painting me as demanding perfection.

    And you invoke arguments about the joys of parenting that wouldn’t permit any lines, but you don’t really believe that, either.

    Start arguing in good faith, and maybe you could put yourself in a position to demand decency from others.

  70. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    In the case of adoption, surely you don’t suggest no standards whatsoever, right? Or should I engage in the same sort of strawman argumentation you’re using?

    Of course not. I expect the standards to be, when it comes down to it, “Are these people fit parents? Will they improve this child’s life?” But that answer should NOT be tainted by “Well, I don’t think ‘the gays’ CAN be fit parents…” or, “I don’t think a single mom CAN be a fit parent…” or “I don’t think hispanics CAN be fit parents…” or whatever group you might want to toss aside blindly.

    Do you support a person/couple who has shown themselves to be good people capable of being good parents being allowed to adopt, or do you want to limit some classes of people regardless of the individuals involved and their worthiness?

    Start arguing in good faith, indeed.

    ~Dan

    • I want adoption to be based solely on what is best for the child in question. That would preclude any couples not hetero to take a distant back seat to every possible hetero couple available, and possibly to resign one’s self to the better option that the child has no candidates for parents yet available. Just as some kids have survived homosexual parents, abusive parents, single parents….many have survived orphanages. Don’t pretend it’s an option that has no merit whatever.

      • paynehollow says:

        Not pretending, Marshall. Your hunch has no merit, whatsoever. Comparing a loving gay dad family or loving lesbian mom family to abusive homes is what has no intellectual merit. It’s pandering to the baser instincts of religious bigots, naught else.

        Come up with an idea that has some actual merit based on reality and we can talk seriously.

        ~Dan

  71. Dan:

    You have a habit of using the phrase “the gays” — in quotes, no less — even though I don’t use that phrase, nor does anyone else I’ve ever seen you engage.

    You accuse me of “toss[ing] aside blindly” groups of people when my position is based on the quite reasonable belief that children need both a mother and a father; you denigrate as arbitrary that reasonable position and the conclusions that naturally follow.

    You mention “a person/couple” without extending the logic of your position to its conclusion, that groups of an arbitrary size should be considered for adoption, lest we discriminate against an entire class of polygamists.

    And you don’t even address the example I mentioned that undermines your position, that of violent or abusive convicts: you don’t say whether you agree that we should have a blanket exclusion for such people, or whether you think that we should evaluate “the felons” on an individual basis to avoid discrimination against an entire class

    You’re simply in no position to lecture anyone about arguing in good faith.

  72. paynehollow says:

    So, are you saying you WOULD or WOULDN’T deny an adoption (if it were up to you) to, say, a single woman who was otherwise well qualified in every way to adopt a child and give that child a loving home?

    Are you saying you WOULD or WOULDN’T deny an adoption (if it were up to you) to, say, two married lesbian women who were otherwise well qualified in every way to adopt a child and give that child a loving home?

    I’m saying that IF someone or a couple has demonstrated that they are not of good character – they’re drug addicts, they’re criminals, they’re not employed with no prospect or plan to be employed, etc – then we can reasonably deny an adoption to them. On the other hand, if an individual or a couple IS otherwise qualified with the exception that they’re in an arrangement some religious folk may not approve of (gay marriage, single), then OF COURSE they should be able to adopt. I will not bow to bigotry as a reason to deny adoption. Will you? Nor will I bow to a demand that the family look a certain way as a reason to deny adoption, as long as they are otherwise qualified. Will you?

    It appears your answer is Yes. If so, shame on you. Fortunately, the world is leaving behind that sort of bigotry as a measure for what makes for good parents. We can see and recognize the obvious without the need for bullying from religious bigots.

    ~Dan

    • You suggest that gender of the parents is not a qualification for describing “good parents”. I suggest that one man/one woman is a qualification for describing “best possible parents” and the best possible situation is the only one any responsible adoption agency should be seeking for any child. Like Bubba, the concept of making a child “make do” with less than the best when that option unnecessary is reprehensible. If a child is currently in a dangerous situation, I would not object to less than perfect alternatives that are an improvement over the dangerous situation. But that’s an exception to the rule scenario. And it should be regarded, at least initially and primarily, as temporary. It’s called, putting the child first. The only thing that matters in child placement.

  73. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    You accuse me of “toss[ing] aside blindly” groups of people when my position is based on the quite reasonable belief that children need both a mother and a father

    Indeed, I dismiss unsubstantiated claims based on bigotry rather than real world evidence all the time. What would you have me do? Bow to bullying religious zealots even though their claims are unsubstantiated and not based on facts? No, thanks.

    Children need parents. They need someone to care for them, to lead them, to teach them, to guide them, to nurture them.

    In the real world, single people, lesbian moms, gay dads do this every day. That you don’t approve of their homes based on your religious biases is not evidence that they can’t be good parents.

    Let’s talk evidence and facts, when it comes to taking care of children, not religious biases and unsupported rumors.

    I do apologize if I’m coming across as harsh, but we’re frankly quite tired of people trying to influence policy and deny privileges and opportunity without any evidence beyond, “I don’t think my God would approve…”

    The demand is too great for that sort of shallow reasoning.

    ~Dan

  74. Dan, if you weren’t so concerned with trumpeting your Pharisaical self-righteousness, you would see that you’re proving my point — we both draw lines that exclude entire groups, including those who have serious criminal records, such as convictions felonies, violent crimes, and criminal child abuse.

    Evidently, in those cases, BOTH OF US would oppose an adoption by someone “who was otherwise well qualified in every way to adopt a child and give that child a loving home” — the aberration on their record is enough to be disqualifying.

    Neither of us are demanding perfection, nor are either of us apparently recommending no standards whatsoever. We’re both drawing lines in between those two extremes.

    You want to denigrate the line I draw as bigotry — and accuse me of bullying, religious nit-picking, and focusing on superficial irrelevancies — but the line I draw follows very naturally from the belief that a child thrives best with a mother and a father.

    You may disagree with that belief, but you may not honestly sneer at it as irrational prejudice, no matter how useful it is to do so, and no matter how much it strokes your ego to do so.

    It’s a very natural conclusion, that the one natural act that produces children is limited to the one relationship that is uniquely best for children.

  75. paynehollow says:

    Yes, Bubba, of course we both draw lines that exclude groups. My list would include those who actually, you know, cause harm and who would not likely be good parents because of that – the thieves, the drugged, the abusers, the pedophiles, the rapists, etc.

    On the other hand, your list would include those, but also add those of whom you merely disapprove, NOT because there is any reason to think they’d be bad parents, but because your religious biases tells you not to.

    Bubba, DO you think that straight single parent candidates should be excluded from adoption simply because they are not a mother and a father? Can you at least answer that question directly?

    ~Dan

  76. Dan.

    My position is grounded, not merely on religious teachings, but also on my own personal experience (see my 9:33 am comment) and the undisputable fact that absentee fathers are the most significant predictor of a life lived in crime, poverty, and chemical dependence. I’d go so far as to say that EVERYONE suffers when children aren’t being raised by mothers and fathers: children tend to become basketcases, mothers tend to be more vulnerable economically, and fathers tend to be less mature.

    But, whatever. You insist:

    “Children need parents. They need someone to care for them, to lead them, to teach them, to guide them, to nurture them.”

    I AGREE, but to that I would add simply this:

    Children need a mother and a father. They need someone to model what it’s like to be a man and what it’s like to be woman, so that they can emulate one and learn to relate to the other, or vice versa.

    Saying this isn’t bigotry, much less is it the bigotry of bullying religious zealots.

    And if anyone’s guilty of bullying in this thread, it’s you with your “right side of history” rhetoric and your constant sneering that all your opponents have are “rumors” and prejudice against “the gays.”

    • Indeed. And what’s more, people like Dan and Bryce are demonstrating they prioritize their concern with homosexual parents over the best interests of the child in need of a family. To them, any family will do. Dan even suggests that is the view of the child, as if he has a poll or survey to which he could refer us for proof. I would imagine that a child wants a mother and a father, not just a family. I would suggest that a child naturally thinks in terms of a family headed by a mother and a father, not just “parents”. I admit I have no surveys to support this, but I can’t imagine that without indoctrination that a child would not have a natural desire for both a mother and a father.

      • paynehollow says:

        This is exactly about the best interests of the child. You all are the ones talking about denying homes to kids in orphanages NOT based on going to homes with people who are good parents, but based on religious and culturally biases that says gay parents can’t be good parents. Reality demonstrates you’re wrong and your opposition to reality demonstrates that you’re not acting in the best interests of children, but on behalf of a religious and partisan agenda.

        ~Dan

  77. paynehollow says:

    So, you WOULD tells a single woman who is otherwise qualified, “You can’t adopt because you can’t be a mother AND a father…”?

    Well, in the real world, we see that single moms can be and ARE great parents for their children and the world is better off for them. In the real world, we can see that gay dads and lesbian moms can be and ARE great parents for their children and the world is better off for them.

    So, yes, you can continue to rely upon your religious bigotry, but I’m going with real world evidence.

    As noted above, the one or two studies that you all tend to cite to “prove” that gay parents are “bad,” do not prove anything of the sort. That you don’t understand this reality does not make your bigotry or bullying any better or more rational.

    ~Dan

  78. paynehollow says:

    And Bubba, I get that you weren’t raised by your dad and you feel deprived because of it, or whatever it is you feel your family/community could not provide to you. But other people don’t agree. You can’t let your personal hurtful experiences be a reason to deny other children the right to good parents. And in the real world, single people, gays and lesbians ARE good parents.

    While you can continue to complain, the rest of us will be busy supporting and finding homes for children where there are good parents, regardless of their marriage status or sexual orientation.

    ~Dan

  79. paynehollow says:

    Here’s another question for you, Bubba: Given the chance to go back and be adopted by a man AND woman to have a mother AND father, would you wish away your single Mom and tell her “I think I’d be better off without you and with this other two family home…”?

    I bet (hope) you wouldn’t.

    ~Dan

    • What an idiotic suggestion, that Bubba would be inconsistent if he would NOT choose an adoptive set of male/female parents over that of his natural mother. The dishonesty of your analogies know no bounds. NO ONE is suggesting that a parent who loses a spouse should give up their children. But that doesn’t mitigate the FACT that children do best in a house with a mother and father.

      But that isn’t the argument YOU’RE debating, except as it serves your immoral position. YOU would suggest that there is no difference in the development of a child based on the makeup of the people that raise it. That gender doesn’t matter simply because kids don’t have complete mental breakdowns or any outward sign of the negative impact. Many don’t show ANY signs of the impact of their parents divorcing until they are adults themselves.

      It should be noted that no one here is suggesting that a person who divorces should lose a child if that person lives the rest of his/her life as a homosexual. We do not (most of us, anyway) do not suggest laws that take children away from their parent if the parent is otherwise not endangering the child. We simply acknowledge the FACT that that child is not in the best environment, even if it is not in the worst.

  80. “Bubba, DO you think that straight single parent candidates should be excluded from adoption simply because they are not a mother and a father? Can you at least answer that question directly?”

    I can, and you should know from our literal years crossing swords that I’m both willing and able to go at length describing my position and explaining my rationale. It’s insulting to insinuate that I can’t.

    …but it’s no more insulting than your arrogant accusation that my “religious biases” are the only reason I believe what I do, which is particularly galling since I’ve already alluded to my own personal history.

    You’re no prosecutor, and I’m not in the dock, so stop hectoring me.

    You admit — finally! — that we both draw lines that exclude groups, and you say that the line you draw is “those who actually, you know, cause harm and who would not likely be good parents because of that.”

    We don’t judge school lunch programs only by whether they lack poison, but ALSO whether they are nutritionally complete: it’s not enough to avoid harm, the programs must also provide what’s needed.

    Children not only need “parents” in a vague, indeterminate and androgynous sense.

    Children need a mother and a father.

    If I understand it correctly, adoption isn’t as frequent as it should be, but the government is making the process needlessly burdensome. If the process was reformed and there was still a shortage of adoptive parents, THEN perhaps it would make sense to look at less ideal arrangements to fill in the gaps as better than orphanages but STILL not preferable to an intact home of a mother and a father.

    But I suspect that even that wouldn’t satisfy, as it seems that the core of this issue is endorsing the lifestyle choices of adults, not providing what’s actually best for kids.

    And again we’re back to your support of abortion, which comes down to the same issue.

  81. Dan, I think someone else has already pointed out recently your habit of dismissing other people’s experiences while elevating your own: it doesn’t matter how much somebody has learned by working with the poor, that anecdotal experience isn’t trustworthy compared, NOT with comprehensive data in the social sciences, but with YOUR experiences. What you experience is an insight to Reality, and what others experience is incomplete or outright misleading.

    My childhood was pretty darn good, actually, but there are tradeoffs with everything, and I can no longer deny that there are things that only a loving father can provide, and that I missed out on those things to my detriment.

    I certainly wouldn’t dishonor my mother by wishing away her influence, but it’s no slight against her to recognize that there were things I needed that she wasn’t able to provide.

    Children need a mother and a father, Dan.

    My own experience has confirmed this, as has the devastating effect of absentee fathers on society.

  82. paynehollow says:

    Again, you are welcome to your opinions. I just don’t find them to be based on reality and facts (like the real world fact that many single, gay and lesbian parents are GREAT parents doing a great job), but upon biases and one or two flawed studies from which you are drawing flawed conclusions.

    Thankfully, most people are recognizing the reality that good parents and good homes can come in all sorts of packages and your sorts of biases are losing the argument, for good reason.

    Thanks be to God.

    Bubba…

    THEN perhaps it would make sense to look at less ideal arrangements to fill in the gaps as better than orphanages

    This is the point you appear to be missing, Bubba: ALL arrangements are less than ideal. There ARE no perfect parents, a point to which you agree. I think it comes down to this: You and your “side” think that single parents are SIGNIFICANTLY less ideal than two parent homes and gay or lesbian parents are even MORE significantly less ideal. You all appear to think that these arrangements are not only “less than perfect” – a point I think is true of ALL homes – but actually harmful. That is where the research does not support your conclusions. Given that research does not support your conclusions – and given the many overtly ridiculous claims like “giving kids to gay parents is like giving them to pedophiles! It’s child abuse!! rant, drool, rant…” – it seems as if you are basing your conclusions on cultural and religious biases, not evidence.

    That is where you all are losing the argument.

    Again, thanks be to God.

    ~Dan

    • brycelancaster says:

      Dan, you have it right. Thanks for restoring my faith in the world. It’s people like you who are the only ones tying me down to religion. Everybody else seems to believe that six verses written thousands of years ago should matter more than the reality of today. That I should be condemned as both a person and as a potential parent, due to six verses written thousands of years ago. With the only “scientific” evidence to back it up being that children need a mother and a father, with the only statistics coming from it being ones from single-parent homes. Because a single-parent household is the same as a same-sex household….

      Thank you Dan.

  83. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    My own experience has confirmed this

    But, I gather from your response, you would NOT undo your own experience, right? Your mom and her community WERE able to successfully raise you, yes?

    I’m just saying that other single parents and gay and lesbian parents ought to have the same chance that you would not deny your own mother.

    Here’s another question: Given that you might be willing to see children be adopted in “less ideal” homes (less ideal, according to you), who would you give preference to – a single parent who’d have to raise the child alone? Or two lesbian moms/two gay dads?

    I think all of us recognize the difficulty of raising a child (or children) alone, so rationally, it seems like two parents – even if they’re both male or both female – would be the “more ideal” situation, could you agree with that?

    At a guess, I’d guess your answer here will betray the religious biases in your argument. At a guess, you’d rather see a child raised by a straight single mom – alone – over two lesbian moms. Even though from the “less ideal” viewpoint, the single mom or dad would have to be the most “least ideal…”

    But you tell me.

    ~Dan

  84. paynehollow says:

    A point of clarification: In two posts back, I said… “and given the many overtly ridiculous claims” where I meant to say “and given the many overtly ridiculous claims OF SOME on your side…”

    Just to clarify.

    ~Dan

  85. “Thanks be to God.”

    On the one hand, you deride your opponents’ position as being rooted solely in religious biases. On the other hand, you repeatedly preen about your belief that God is on your side.

    You really can be a complete prick sometimes.

  86. And, Dan, isn’t funny how Bryce doesn’t seem to catch your esteem for the Bible, that ancient text?

    It’s almost as if your worldview differs dramatically from that itinerant rabbi whom you supposedly follow, who taught that God created us male and female so that a man would become one flesh with his wife. It’s almost as if you celebrate what the Bible condemns and sneer at what the Bible affirms.

  87. paynehollow says:

    I’m always thankful to God when rational concern for what is best and good wins out. But I’m basing what is best and good on real world evidence, not my cultural or religious biases.

    I note rather than answering my questions you have chosen to try (and fail) to engage in an ad hom attack. That is the sort of irrational assault on logical moral thinking that I am, indeed, thankful to God win it loses out.

    And make no mistake: you all are losing this argument.

    ~Dan

  88. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    It’s almost as if you celebrate what the Bible condemns and sneer at what the Bible affirms.

    No, it’s not at all “almost” that. Indeed, that I disagree with what BUBBA condemns is not in any way comparable to disagreeing with what I think God wants or what the Bible teaches us about God and morality.

    You see, I don’t confuse Bubba with God.

    Now with that second ad hom attack dismissed, do you have any answers to my questions or anything on topic to add?

    ~Dan

  89. paynehollow says:

    And there is nothing in Bryce’s comments that suggest I am dismissing God’s Ways. Apparently, Bryce is able to distinguish between the Will of Bubba and the Will of God, too.

    ~Dan

  90. Bryce, thanks for your replies.

    I think the core of our difference of opinion comes to this:

    “But to deny that sexual chemistry isn’t an aspect in a relationship is to simply deny reality. That’s the only thing that gender has to do with relationships…

    “In terms of parent/child relationships, sexual chemistry isn’t an issue. Therefore, gender isn’t an issue.”

    I agree that attraction and sexual chemistry is important to a marriage, and I also agree that these are tied to gender, but I am VERY skeptical of the claim that marriage is the only relationship in which gender matters.

    Rather, I believe that the interactions between a parent and child is ALSO affected by gender — and not just socially constructed gender roles, as these differences are cross-cultural. Gender matters in how you interact with the parent-with-the-same-gender AND in how you interact with the parent-with-the-complementary-gender.

    Not to go all Freudian, but for a lot of people the earliest rudimentary experiences of chemistry and attraction are for a parent — and the other parent is both a rival to that affection and a model for how to express that affection — so even if chemistry is literally the ONLY time gender matters, it would still affect one’s interactions with one’s parents.

    If chemistry is only one area where gender matters, the difference would be even greater.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Thanks for responding.

      Addressing the part where you “go all Freudian’, (AP Psych student here, Freud’s always fun to discuss), I completely agree that the affection and chemistry between the parents is often the first interaction that a child sees. I don’t believe this is imperative for the child to form a healthy understanding of relationships and sexual chemistry. Speaking from the perspective of a gay man who was raised by heterosexual parents, seeing opposite genders love each other didn’t affect my ability to form romantic interests towards same-gendered partners. What stood out to me, and what my parents relationship taught me, was the importance of love and intimacy in romantic relationships. That’s the important lesson to teach children through their parents relationships, and both opposite-sex and same-sex pairings are capable of doing this. The gender of the parents doesn’t affect the learning process of teaching your child the importance of sexual/romantic chemistry, other than the lesson that it’s okay to fall in love with either gender. In short, same-gender couples are just as capable of showing the same amount of affection to each other as opposite-gender couples, and they can still teach their children about healthy relationships. The fact that they may be of the same gender of their child, (two dads raising a boy), doesn’t mean that boy wouldn’t be taught how to properly treat a woman in a relationship. Love, intimacy, respect, and chemistry is genderless.

      Same-gender parents can teach their children all of the same values as opposite-gender parents. Two moms are just as capable of roughhousing, taking fishing trips, and teaching a girl how to properly treat other people as a Dad raising a girl is. As long as those moms teach that girl to respect everyone, to form intimate relationships with who she chooses to be with romantically, and to be confident and assertive… that girl is going to be equipped with the exact same tools as another girl raised by a male.

      It’s not even gender that’s important in relationships, it’s making sure that you’re in a relationship with someone who you’re attracted to. It’s like body type, (some guys like them skinny, some guys like them curvy), skin color, (me personally, I’ve never been very attracted to Asians), or height, (I have a friend who won’t date any guy under 6 feet tall). Likewise, some guys like girls, some girls like girls, and some guys like guys. Biologically, same-sex couples are incapable of procreating. But if they find a willing donor or surrogate, I don’t see why that means they shouldn’t be valued as much as heterosexual couples. Because they needed the help of an extra man/woman to create a child? It may not be “natural’, but I’m typing this on a $1000 dollar piece of equipment to someone who lives hundreds of miles away who will be able to receive this message instantaneously. We as a society have evolved far beyond the point of basing our legal judgements based off of what is “natural” or not. If the end result is the same… a child… does it matter whether you involve a machine, an agency, or an additional person to get it?

    • brycelancaster says:

      (This part got cut off)

      Why does the means of making the child matter when the end result is RAISING a child? (And as I addressed in the paragraphs above, the gender of the parents doesn’t affect the lessons that the child learns growing up).

  91. Dan, I answered questions from you in two consecutive comments, at 3:08 and 3:22. It’s dishonest to pretend I haven’t, just as it’s presumptuous to declare in somebody else’s blog what comments are and are not on-topic.

    I didn’t answer your last question, in part because I thought it more important to point out how inconsistent you can be, deriding largely non-religious arguments for their supposedly religious biases, then invoking God as if it’s clear as day that He’s on your side.

    It’s an interesting question, Dan, whether single parents should be given lower priority in the adoption lines than same-sex couples, but logistics and finances aren’t the only concern, or the best environment would be a polygamous clan, the more the better.

    There are probably usurers who are far more financially secure — with far more free time — than some mechanics, but these people line their pockets by exploiting people in our poorest neighborhoods while the blue-collar guys spend long hours doing hard work to provide truly useful services. By your logic, a preferential adoption system would defer to the usurers, but I bet your discomfort with that idea tells us a lot about your religious biases, too.

    Now, you’ve taken this approach an awful lot over the years, about how you must follow God rather than man, but it’s funny how you insist humility for everyone…

    “I don’t confuse Bubba with God.”

    …everyone but yourself.

    “I’m always thankful to God when rational concern for what is best and good wins out. But I’m basing what is best and good on real world evidence, not my cultural or religious biases.”

    It’s not arrogant for you to believe that God is on your side, but it IS for me to disagree.

    Funny, that.

    Indeed divine revelation is authoritative and merely human interpretation is not, but my theology leaves room where yours apparently does not, for a deity who need not mumble.

    I believe God can and does sometimes reveal Himself clearly enough that there’s no real room for disagreement — and I believe, where God does reveal Himself and His will, there isn’t an infinite amount of room for disagreement.

    You don’t walk us through how you got from God’s written revelation to your often bizarre conclusions, and in the absence of CREDIBLE alternative interpretations, I believe it’s not arrogant to conclude that God has spoken clearly on quite a few matters of theology, history, and ethics.

    On the questions of the causal connection of Christ’s death and our forgiveness, the necessity of the bodily resurrection, and Christ’s own institution of the Lord’s Supper, you are so far afield from the plain teachings of Scripture that I believe it is no sin of pride to repudiate your position, *NOT* as mere disagreements with my personal opinions, but as outright rejections of the clear and plain teachings of Scripture.

    On this particular subject, Jesus Christ clearly affirmed that God made us male and female so that a man would leave his family to become one flesh with his wife. Your position has never adequately accounted for that teaching, because it’s obvious that your position deviates from it.

    Paul warns us that anyone who preaches a false gospel is accursed, but that warning doesn’t help us if we cannot know the true good news with any real confidence.

    Jude urged his readers to contend for “the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints,” but that command is meaningless if we cannot know what the message is.

    In short, it’s not arrogance to recognize when God has spoken clearly. What’s arrogant is plugging your ears when you don’t like what He says, just to pretend that He mumbled.

  92. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    Indeed divine revelation is authoritative and merely human interpretation is not, but my theology leaves room where yours apparently does not, for a deity who need not mumble.

    The flip side of that is, of course, I leave room for the reality that I and you and we all are fallible humans, capable of being mistaken. You appear to insist that there are some topics on which you can’t be mistaken because, you posit, God wouldn’t “mumble.”

    Indeed, I think the truth of it all is abundantly clear and that God has not mumbled on these topics we discuss. But you appear to have “heard wrong.” You, of course, think that I “heard wrong,” so apparently you DO think that God is capable of mumbling on these topics. If God were abundantly clear, then there would be no way for a sincere seeker such as myself or the many others out there who sincerely disagree with you to be mistaken.

    You appear, then, to insist that God mumbles, because you insist that we are understanding incorrectly, whereas you are incapable of being mistaken on some of these points.

    Which seems to be less about God’s abilities and more about your own demi-perfection. Telling, that.

    ~Dan

  93. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    as it’s presumptuous to declare in somebody else’s blog what comments are and are not on-topic.

    Ad hom attacks are always, by definition, off topic. It’s a taking the focus OFF the topic and centering it on an attack on the person, rather than, the topic.

    Noting reality is not presumptuous.

    Bubba…

    I didn’t answer your last question, in part because I thought it more important to point out how inconsistent you can be, deriding largely non-religious arguments for their supposedly religious biases

    Put another way, “I didn’t answer your question opting, instead, to make an off topic ad hom attack.” No doubt, if you have no good answers to the on-topic questions being raised, it’s an understandable, if flawed, tactic.

    Almost on topic, you said…

    By your logic, a preferential adoption system would defer to the usurers, but I bet your discomfort with that idea tells us a lot about your religious biases, too.

    That is, of course, not my logic, but a misrepresentation of my logic.

    My logic is simple: IF the candidates for adoption are able to afford the adoptee, are decent people – single or a couple – with no known harmful behaviors (ie, no rapists, child molesters, abusers, drug addicts), who are able to provide a good home for the adoptee, then they are good candidates for adoption.

    Should the destitute be encouraged to adopt? No, because they can’t afford a child. But that does not place priority with wealthier people, not by MY logic.

    By your logic, it would appear that a gay couple would be the much more worthy candidate than the single person, if you were being consistent in your logic. But for you, it appears, it’s NOT about the “they need a Mom AND Dad,” as much as it is about, “They can’t be gay, cause gay is all ooky, and I think God doesn’t like gay parents…” and the “they need a Mom AND Dad” is only a red herring, not the true reason why you want to home for orphans if it means going to a gay couple.

    Am I mistaken? Then clarify. I don’t think I am, based on what you’ve said thus far.

    ~Dan

  94. Dan, your sneering about the supposed bullying of religious fanatics and their bias and bigotry doesn’t give you a whole lot of room to gripe about ad hominem attacks — nor does your lying about how I never answer your questions.

    I don’t follow your 5:44 comment at all. You deride me for thinking that God doesn’t always mumble, but you agree that some revelation is clear; our disagreement is somehow proof that — despite my stated belief — I must think God DOES mumble after all, and I’m somehow thus arrogant in believing in my own demi-perfection.

    (Can something even be partially perfect?)

    I’ll be as clear as I can be.

    “If God were abundantly clear, then there would be no way for a sincere seeker such as myself or the many others out there who sincerely disagree with you to be mistaken.”

    I don’t think you’re a sincere seeker of the truth in general or God’s revealed will in particular.

  95. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    You deride me for thinking that God doesn’t always mumble, but you agree that some revelation is clear;

    The point, restated, is that yes, you DO think that the “right” answer is clear – abundantly so – on many topics. BUT, there are those on the other side of the issue who think the “right” answer is ALSO abundantly clear. Thus, this is evidence that the topic (whatever it may be) is NOT entirely abundantly clear otherwise, there would not be the disagreement.

    You can’t have sincere, serious seekers looking for answers and coming to different conclusions and then say, “Well, God is abundantly clear…” when factually, people of good faith disagree on the topic. It is evidence – not so much that God is or isn’t clear, but that humans are capable of being mistaken. Which is a point which is also abundantly clear. And yet, you want to make the claim that you can’t be mistaken on some vague set of points/issues, without stating why ON THESE ISSUES, you can’t be mistaken…

    It becomes all about you, in spite of your appeal to “God is on my side on this issue…”

    The evidential position to take is that humans can and are mistaken on any number of topics and we can’t blame or not blame God on human imperfection, it’s just the way we are.

    Bubba…

    Can something even be partially perfect?

    No.

    I hope that sinks in.

    Bubba…

    I don’t think you’re a sincere seeker of the truth in general or God’s revealed will in particular.

    Regardless of your feelings on the matter, the facts are the facts. A fella doesn’t spend the great majority of his life seeking God, praying, reading the bible, seeking truth, seeking inspiration, meditating, contemplating, seeking Truth and striving to understand and walk in God’s grace and Jesus’ steps who is not a sincere seeker.

    The evidence is what it is, but your conclusion is entirely irrational. Why would someone do what I (and people like me) do?

    Certainly, I am an imperfect seeker. Certainly, I am a flawed sinner in need of grace and wisdom. Certainly, you can even call me stupid and dense and there will be some truth to that. You can reach all sorts of conclusions based on the evidence that are not unreasonable, but saying, “This fella, saved at the age of 10, raised in church and attending church all his life, praying all his life, seeking God all his life, reading the Bible nearly daily nearly all his life… he is not a sincere seeker…”

    Evidence just rejects such a conclusion.

    But why don’t we skip your tendency to try to psychoanalyze and second guess my motives – you’re just not that good at it, having something like a 99% failure rate – and stick to addressing the topic at hand?

    ~Dan

  96. Dan, it’s a very old argument indeed, but time spent studying the Bible isn’t sufficient, or else Jesus would have had nothing but praise for the scribes and Pharisees — and your time spent studying isn’t something I can measure from this end of the Internet.

    I’m not without evidence, so that the conclusions I draw are merely “irrational” “feelings.”

    No, I have lots of evidence: the substance of your arguments, or the lack thereof. If you actually did get to your positions through good-faith Bible study, you could have walked us through the process. You never have, and I know the Bible well enough to know you CANNOT: Scripture isn’t infinitely malleable, and it’s not unclear that it permits your grotesque beliefs.

    Honestly, I’d love to be wrong about what it is you believe, but you’ve never corrected me to say anything like the following:

    1) “No, Bubba, of course I believe the Bible is a reliable account of the historical event of the Passover.”

    2) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that God did command what the Bible claims He commanded, including the command that ancient Israel wage wars of annihilation.”

    3) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that the Bible clearly teaches the Virgin Birth.”

    4) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that Christ’s death is causally responsible for God’s gift of forgiveness, as the Bible teaches clearly, emphatically, and unambiguously.”

    5) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that Christ instituted the observance of the Lord’s Supper, as the Bible clearly records.”

    6) “No, Bubba, of course I believe the Bible’s clear teaching in the necessity of the bodily resurrection, that without it we’re dead in our sins.”

    7) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that theism is essential to Christian faith, that an outspoken atheist could not credibly claim to be a Christian without renouncing his denial of God’s existence.”

    It seems like I do understand your positions quite well.

    If I were wrong about even half of these things, I’d be much less inclined to conclude the obvious, that you’re a false teacher — and I’d be happy to be shown to be wrong in that case, but you’ve never given me an unambiguous correction on any of these points.

    About WHY it is you believe what you do, well, I’m no more presumptuous than you are, in believing that my confidence about the truth is rooted in my own self-regard.

    On numerous issues, some far more central than teachings regarding sexual ethics, you plainly reject the Bible’s clear and repeated teachings. It would not be intellectually honest of me to pretend to entertain the notion that you do so in good faith.

  97. Bryce, it’s not just that “the affection and chemistry between the parents is often the first interaction that a child sees,” often a child experiences very rudimentary emotions of HIS OWN attraction to one parent or the other. With the typical arrangement of a mother and a father, the typically heterosexual child emulates the parent of the same sex in learning how to relate romantically with the parent of the opposite sex.

    I think this at least one way where parenting is significantly affected by the biological fact of gender and not just by socially constructed gender roles.

    You write, “Same-gender parents can teach their children all of the same values as opposite-gender parents.” Values, sure, but not the meaning of gender.

    Indeed, anybody can teach a person how to be a good person and treat others with respect in the general sense, but I believe that most of us have deeper questions than that.

    What does it mean to be a man? How do I understand and interact with women?

    Those are the sort of questions that can best be answered by both the teachings and example, NOT of any romantic pairing, but in the complementary paring of man and woman — husband and wife.

    Not all change is progress, and there’s nothing that requires our technological advances to be moral advances as well, but I point out the fact of procreation primarily to make this point:

    If the coupling of man and woman is the only natural act that results in producing children, maybe — just maybe — that same coupling is uniquely equipped for raising those same children.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Bubba, I appreciate your sentiments.

      “The typical heterosexual child emulates the parent of the same sex in learning how to relate to the parent of the opposite sex”

      Why do they need a parent of the same sex in order to understand how to respect, be intimate with, or relate to anybody else? Again, those traits are universal.

      Let’s say a girl is raised by two moms who show love and affection towards one another. Is that girl then unable to show affections towards boys at the same level that a girl raised by a man is? Why does the genitals of who you’re talking to matter when forming connections with them?

      To put it another way, it’s like saying that child raised by two white people will be unable to form meaningful connections with a black child. Just because the skin color is different doesn’t mean that the children won’t be able to get along and form affections with each other at a normal rate. Likewise, just because the genders are different from what they are raised with doesn’t mean that they are unable to form connections with one another. A girl may be raised with two moms, but as long as those two moms treat each other kindly and decently, that girl is going to be taught to treat everybody kindly and decently. Regardless of skin color or what kind of genitals you have.

      That above paragraph also answers your statement of “how do I understand and interact with women?” Let’s say a boy is raised with two dads. As long as those dads raise him in a household where he sees two adults loving, respecting, and being intimate with each other, those are traits that can be universally applied. If a black child is raised in a white household where he sees two white adults being loving, respecting, and intimate with each other, he’ll be able to form that exact same relationship with another black child. If a straight child is raised in a gay household where he sees two gay adults being loving, respecting, and intimate with each other, he’ll be able to form that exact same relationship with another straight child.

      Now, for the opposite. Let’s say a boy is raised by two moms. As you put it, “What does it mean to be a man?” What being a man means, in most people’s books, is to be respectful, courageous, hard-working, proud, and strong. As you said before, those traits can be taught by either gender. Now, you’re right when you say the actual gender of the man will not be present in the household. Why does this matter if the actual traits we value behind that gender can still be taught? I assume it’s the actual gender identity. I’m going to make another reference to race. We allow white couples to adopt non-white babies all the time. Those babies grow up in a household without someone of their skin color guiding them. They are faced with the question, “What does it mean to be black? Or latino? Or African?” Race identity is just as prevalent in minority communities as gender identity is in our society today. However, over half of all adoptions taking place in the US are now transracial. Studies found that as long as the parents maintain open dialogue with their children about culture and race, those children fare just as well. Equate open dialogue with trait building and you have a correlation. As long as communication is open and the parents strive to do activities both masculine and feminine, (or in the case of transracial adoptions, culturally inclusive activities), children turn out just as fine, even without a parent of the same gender or race guiding them.

      I assume you’re going to have a problem with me equating race and gender. But both encompass strong identities that affect child development. Both are fixed at birth, (with the exception of Trans children, but that is another topic ENTIRELY). And both can ultimately be compensated for by open communication and inclusion of all types of activities and events.

      “If the coupling of man and woman is the only natural act that results in producing children, maybe — just maybe — that same coupling is uniquely equipped for raising those same children.”

      If traveling on foot is the only natural act in reaching one destination, maybe that act is ultimately what’s best for traveling.

      Just because something is natural doesn’t mean that it equals the best process for doing something. You have to explain WHY it is uniquely equipped for raising children. Why should the fact that a same-sex couple require an extra donor mean that they are unfit parents? You can argue that their gender is what matters, (but I believe I’ve adequately proven that it doesn’t), but arguing against the process simply doesn’t make such sense. The only argument I can see is that God designed them that way for a reason, but in terms of secular law and benefits, we have to be able to have hard evidence that we can see in order to make a law. Murder is illegal not just because the bible says it is, but because we can see the fact that somebody loses their life because of it. Fraud is illegal not just because the bible says that lying is bad, but because we can see people losing their own money because of it. I don’t see a rational argument against SSM based off of the process of procreation that says that requiring an extra donor makes them inherently unfit to be ideal parents.

      All the best,

      Bryce

  98. paynehollow says:

    Off topic, Bubba said….

    It seems like I do understand your positions quite well.

    If I were wrong about even half of these things, I’d be much less inclined to conclude the obvious, that you’re a false teacher

    ? What are you saying? That Christians have to agree on every point you believe in order to NOT be a false teacher? That there is no room for disagreement on some topics (most of which are nothing like traditional Christian essentials) that you’ve grabbed at random and that the Bible doesn’t tell us we have to believe the same as Bubba in order to be saved?

    Man, people of good will disagree sincerely on some topics. YOU, after all, disagree with ME on these topics. Does that make you a false teacher? Is disagreeing with another person the sign of a false teacher?

    This makes no sense, your random insistence upon agreement with Bubba on a whimsical list of Bubba’s “Things I Believe About the Bible…”

    Man, believe it: We are saved by GRACE, not by some insistence upon a whimsical list of Gotta Agree with Bubba points.

    Salvation by perfect knowledge is a form of a works-based salvation approach, and that is an actual heresy. Embrace grace.

    End of off-topic discussion.

    ~Dan

  99. paynehollow says:

    Look, if John doesn’t object to your off topic attempt at red herrings, here’s the first three of your examples where you want to insist I have to agree with Bubba in order to not be a “false teacher…”

    1) “No, Bubba, of course I believe the Bible is a reliable account of the historical event of the Passover.”

    2) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that God did command what the Bible claims He commanded, including the command that ancient Israel wage wars of annihilation.”

    3) “No, Bubba, of course I believe that the Bible clearly teaches the Virgin Birth.”

    Now, looking at those, WHERE in the Bible does it tell you “There is ONE accepted interpretation of these stories and the ONE accepted one is the one you HAVE to agree with, otherwise, you are a false teacher?”

    What’s that? The Bible doesn’t teach that? Not ANYwhere? Not even one time?

    Okay, if the Bible doesn’t teach we have to hold to ONE particular interpretation of these passages, where has God told you this?

    What’s that? God has NOT told you this?

    Well, then, where do you get off insisting that people MUST hold to one particular interpretation of these passages in order to not be a false teacher?

    In the real world, Bubba, sincere Christians of good faith disagree on passages. It’s not a sign of “false teaching.” It’s a sign of disagreement. Naught else. We’re humans. We have imperfect knowledge, we won’t always agree.

    WHY on these stories are you insisting on ONE interpretation in order to not be a false teacher? MUST Christians hold to a literal view of the Creation story in order to not be a false teacher? Why?

    Be specific. WHY do we have to agree on interpretations on just these three stories/ideas (or four, if you want to add a 6 day creation, 6,000 years ago to your random list of “necessities…”)? The Bible CLEARLY does not demand what you are demanding, so why are you demanding it? Is it just ego? Is it that you are equating your favorite human traditions with God’s Word? WHY?

    The answer is (feel free to correct me, but I’m pretty sure this is correct), that you have NO biblical reason to insist upon my adherence to YOUR interpretations on these 4 stories, it just makes you feel more comfortable if people don’t disagree with your interpretation. But the thing is, Bubba, the Bible does not teach, nor does reason demand, that we interpret passages based on “What makes Bubba comfortable?” And if we’re not going to do it for Bubba’s sake, then WHY are we going to demand this lockstep adherence to Bubbaism?

    I just can NOT see a single rational or biblical reason for your demand on, for starting points’ sake, these four stories/human interpretations.

    Lacking any biblical or rational reason to give up my understanding, I’ll pass on doing so.

    Now, if one day you think you can make that case, write me an email and make it. In the meantime, it does not serve your cause well to insist upon irrational and unbiblical – ANTI-biblical – teachings.

    ~Dan

  100. Bryce, I certainly understand the rhetorical power of comparing race and sex — though part of that power comes from not thinking things through. The same appeals to civil rights that are used in the argument for same-sex marriage can be used just as effectively for polygamy and adult incest, and we should not forget that the progressive instinct behind the broader movement has resulted in some very obvious missteps, from eugenics and Prohibition to (more relevant to this topic) the free-love movement and no-fault divorce.

    I understand the comparison, but I do object to it. I object because, in many ways, race is a nebulous and superficial distinction where the differences between the sexes are both more clearly defined AND more profound.

    There’s no obvious set number of races, but there are only two sexes; the differences among the races come down to genes here and there, but the differences between the sexes come down to an entire chromosome — and the tiny population of people who do not genuinely fit in either category are the result of chromosomal deviations from the two norms of XX and XY.

    It would be quackery to have branches of medicine devoted to a single race, but gynecology and obstetrics are obviously serious and important to human health.

    Racial differences largely amount to appearances, while sexual differences deal with more essential questions of form and function. The analogy that comes to mind is between a sports car and a tow truck: they may have the same passenger capacity, but they will handle VERY differently, even when the latter isn’t towing anything — and paint jobs hardly factor in.

    Consider dog breeds, which has been the result of literally thousands of years of artificial selection: breeding has had some significant effects in terms of size and lifespan and personality — working dogs being much more energetic and less sociable than companion dogs — but those differences have never erased the basic differences between male and female. Canine mating rituals persist, as does the mother’s unique concern for the welfare of her puppies.

    Looking across all forms of life on Earth, I think it’s clear that we land quite far on one side of the spectrum on the question of how much sex matters.

    To wit, there are species of fish where the female and male differ hardly at all: one drops her unfertilized eggs, the other swims by and fertilizes them, and neither cares for their young. There are species of frog that are hermaphroditic, changing sex as the local demographics require it. Each flowering plant has both halves of the needed reproductive organs, and some can self-pollinate.

    As mammals, human females not only carry their young for nine months, they nurse their young for about as long. Human females don’t have pouches like marsupials, and human males don’t have the striking plumage of many male birds, but then again, male facial hair isn’t a million miles away from the male lion’s mane.

    It is reasonable to suspect and even to conclude that these profound differences in physiology *DO* result in profound differences in psychology, that our behavioral differences cannot be reduced to socially constructed roles. Men are from Mars, women are from Venus — or as I believe John Eldredge persuasively argues, men and women all doubt whether they measure up, but they do so in different ways.

    About laws, marriage, and adoption, indeed laws prohibit murder, assault, theft, and fraud for reasons that aren’t strictly religious, but marriage laws aren’t about what the state merely allows, but what the state ENDORSES. The state has a vested interest in ensuring the well-being of the next generation of citizens, and for that reason it has a reason to regulate the procreative act, NOT by forbidding the act in other circumstances, but by endorsing the relationship that encourages the best environment for the children that frequently result — namely, the union of man and woman in a single home, in lifelong monogamy.

    There are unions of man and woman that don’t plan to have kids, but those plans often change (or are changed by circumstances), and there are infertile unions that can provide this ideal environment through adoption and, in any case, they reinforce the norm. (All this sets aside the non-trivial question of how a state would ascertain which heterosexual couples cannot and will not procreate.)

    There may be no compelling reason for the state to prohibit same-sex relationships between/among consenting adults, but there’s no real reason for the state to ENDORSE those relationships — no more than there is for the state to endorse a platonic friendship between a man and a woman. And there’s certainly no reason for the state to try to endorse such relationships by radically redefining an institution that precedes the state by literal millennia.

    About adoption — as opposed to retaining an existing custody — the concern is not, as Dan argues, merely avoiding harm but providing what a child needs, and children need a mother and a father specifically and not just an androgynous pair of any two adults.

    One could argue quite credibly that adoption by a same-sex couple is preferable to remaining in the system of orphanages and foster care, but that’s not what this is about: it’s not about the comparison to remaining in the system, it’s about the comparison to the relationship of husband and wife.

    No matter how much the subjective feelings are similar, no same-sex pairing is equivalent to the conjugal and complementary union of man and woman.

    Saying so isn’t bigotry, but that’s far too defensive a position to take: saying so is strongly credible and I believe it’s the most credible position to take.

    Clearly we’ll continue to disagree, but it’s been a real pleasure.

    • It has been a pleasure. We will continue to disagree, and I’ll leave with this. Racial identity and gender identity are correlated concepts, something to which the physiological differences you described didn’t quite extend to. If a ethnic child reports strong feelings of racial identity after being raised by two white people, then a male child will be able to report strong feelings of gender identity after being raised by two females. AS LONG AS those females make an effort to discuss gender and include that child in gender-inclusive activities, just like an ethnic child will gain racial identity if their parents discuss issues of race and include them in culture-centered activities. I don’t contest the physiological differences you described, but racial identity IS a strong set of values in minority children. Just like gender identity is a strong set of values in any gender. Or how a deaf child can gain Deaf Identity, (a very real thing, the deaf community is becoming increasingly vocalized), if he is raised in a household with two parents who can hear. As long as concepts are discussed in a healthy manner, children can learn and develop their own identities even without someone exactly like them in the house.

      You’re right, marriage laws aren’t just about what the state allows but what it endorses. The traditional process of procreation isn’t a reason enough to deny same-sex couples the ability to parent, however, because the process of gaining a child doesn’t affect parenting skills. You say it is the GENDER that affects parenting skills, but as of yet I haven’t seen any actual evidence to suggest that having two parents of the same gender negatively affects children. We’ve seen studies showing what each gender can OFFER children, (mothers offer an emotional environment, fathers a male role model figure, etc.), but no evidence suggesting the fact that those same traits cannot be compensated for equally. It’s like saying that you need both of your parents to be scientists in order to gain critical thinking skills, because scientists offer critical thinking skills to their children. While that may be true, children can gain critical thinking skills just as easily in other households. Just like they can gain gender identity in a household without a member of their gender. As long as gender is discussed and gender-inclusive activities are offered, there’s nothing hindering that child from developing a healthy identity.

      If there’s nothing new that either of us can offer, it truly has been enlightening.

  101. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    t there’s no real reason for the state to ENDORSE those relationships — no more than there is for the state to endorse a platonic friendship between a man and a woman.

    Of course there are. You just cited some. You said, speaking of straight relationships…

    The state has a vested interest in ensuring the well-being of the next generation of citizens, and for that reason it has a reason to regulate the procreative act, NOT by forbidding the act in other circumstances, but by endorsing the relationship that encourages the best environment for the children that frequently result

    Even though your particular flavor of religion disapproves of gay relationships and gay parents, IN THE REAL WORLD, society benefits from strong family relationships – gay and straight. Society benefits from MORE strong marriage relationships – gay and straight. Society benefits from MORE children being adopted, whether by gay or straight parents.

    Society does have a reason to endorse and support strong marriages, and the reasons are the same whether it’s a gay marriage or a straight marriage. Children benefit from strong marriage and home relationships, we can see this is true regardless of whether than home is one with gay or straight parents.

    We have no good reason to discourage marriage – gay or straight – and good, real world reasons TO encourage and support them – gay or straight.

    ~Dan

  102. Dan, in what you quoted, I discussed the reasons to regulate the procreative act, and since that act is absent in both same-sex romances and in platonic friendships of any stripe, my argument doesn’t apply.

    You would have noticed that if you were more interested in reading my argument closely than in scoring cheap rhetorical points.

    Never mind that “gay marriage” is as sensible as “same-sex mixed couples” in tennis, and never mind that “straight marriage” is redundant: even supposing that society benefits from all these various relationships, society ALSO benefits from lifelong platonic relationships, from bowling leagues and softball leagues, from book clubs and knitting circles.

    There’s only one sort of relationship which naturally results in producing the next generation of society’s members, because that is the only relationship in which the procreative act ever takes place.

    It’s willful blindness to ignore that basic fact of reality.

  103. paynehollow says:

    It’s willful blindness to ignore the fact that gay people have babies, too. It’s NOT “the act” of producing a baby that the state has an interest in – yuck! – it’s the raising of children and, beyond children, simply strong family units, whether or not there are children. Since the state has an interest in seeing strong family units, there is no rational reason not to support marriage and families, whether they’re gay or straight in make-up.

    The ONLY reasons ever offered are, “I don’t think God thinks it’s okay…” and we’re all fine with you all thinking that, but it’s not a reason to legislate discrimination COUNTER to the desire for strong families.

    ~Dan

  104. Dan, your other comments validate my belief that you do not argue in good faith.

    Of course I don’t believe that Christians “have to agree on every point,” and it’s absurd to describe those items I listed as “random” or “whimsical.”

    You’ll notice I didn’t even list them as Christian essentials, because some of them are not essential, but even some non-essential doctrines remain the clear and unambiguous teaching of Scripture — whether or not the Virgin Birth is essential to Christianity, it’s the clear teaching of the Bible no matter how much you obfuscate on that point.

    As I understand them, the sum total of your beliefs are in such opposition to the Bible’s clear teachings that I simply cannot conclude that they are the result of a good-faith effort to understand and submit to its teachings — and I say “as I understand them,” noticing that, given YET ANOTHER opportunity to correct the record on what you really believe, you don’t.

    Those beliefs include the denial of salvation through Christ’s death and the denial of the necessity of the bodily resurrection.

    These are no small things.

    On the one hand, even the passage you once cited from I Peter that supposedly teaches something different than salvation through Christ’s death CLEARLY affirms that Christ “bore our sins in his body on the tree” (2:24), and Paul could not be more clear that, without the Resurrection, we are dead in our sins.

    On the other hand, you believe that, at most, Christ’s death is a mere demonstration of God’s saving grace, and you’ve crowed about how your faith doesn’t depend on “magic tricks” like the Resurrection.

    The chasm is wide and deep, and it cannot be ignored, NOT between your beliefs and my own, but between your beliefs and the clear, emphatic, and unambiguous teachings of the Bible.

    I notice, you were just griping about psychoanalysis, and yet you allow yourself to express your conjectures — your grossly inaccurate, insulting, and uncharitable conjuectures — about why I believe what I do, that “it just makes [me] feel more comfortable if people don’t disagree with [me] interpretation.”

    And as much as you gripe about my belief that you’re a false teacher, you don’t hesitate to denounce your gross distortion of my position as “actual heresy.”

    I know, I know: to point out the fact that you can’t even be consistent in a single comment is an off-topic ad hominem. We must play along with your pretense of being Honest, Reasonable Dan Trabue: your lying is fine, our pointing it out is terrible.

    …but on the subject of your bad faith and inconsistency, just what are you doing accusing anyone of heresy? Do you actually believe that there is a such a thing as a outright heresy and not just heresy as Christianity is only traditionally understood?

    You believe salvation by works is “an actual heresy”?

    WHERE does the Bible tell you, “There is ONE accepted doctrine of salvation that you HAVE to believe, otherwise you are guilty of heresy”?

    What’s that? The Bible doesn’t teach that? Not ANYwhere? Not even one time?

    Okay, if the Bible doesn’t teach we have to hold to ONE particular interpretation of these passages, where has God told you this?

    What’s that? God has NOT told you this?

    Well, then, where do you get off insisting that people MUST hold to one particular interpretation of these passages in order to not be a heretic?

    What happened to your real-world observation that sincere Christians of good faith disagree on passages? That it’s a sign, NOT of heresy, but of disagreement, and “naught else.”

    “We’re humans. We have imperfect knowledge, we won’t always agree.”

    Those are fine words from a guy who just declared that some doctrine qualifies as “actual heresy.”

  105. Dan, it’s simply false to claim that the “ONLY” reasons against the radical redefinition of marriage are religious. Feel free to conclude that the non-religious reasons are unpersuasive, but it’s dishonest to deny that they even exist.

    About your claim that “gay people have babies, too,” their RELATIONSHIPS are not procreative; it’s a physical impossibility.

    Dismiss it as “yucky” all you want — while no doubt you dismiss the physical revulsion many people have toward homosexual — but the state has a valid interest in encouraging what religious cranks use to extol as chastity.

    These are the relevant basic facts of human existence:

    1) Procreation only results from one natural activity.

    2) The uniquely procreative activity occurs only in one particular relationship.

    3) This uniquely procreative activity isn’t just means to the end of reproduction, it is both enjoyable and desirable as an end unto itself, which means there is strong pressure to engage in the act as an end rather than as a means.

    As I’ve written, the state has a vested interest in that one activity and in that one kind of relationship, to encourage the norm that the activity takes place in an environment where, when children DO result, they are in a generally ideal home where those who brought them into being are responsible for them and each other.

    The state “regulates” this activity (I know, icky), NOT by closing monitoring its occurrence, but by encouraging the norm that the activity takes place only in generally ideal circumstances, in committed, lifelong, monogamous relationships that are, by the nature of things, heterosexual because this activity occurs no where else.

    This vested interest is in the ONLY natural act that propagates the species.

    Other arrangements may or may benefit society, but because they preclude the uniquely procreative act, the state does not have this particular interest in regulating them.

  106. paynehollow says:

    I’ll pass on continuing down this off topic road. Feel free to write me about it if you have actual concerns. Suffice to say, you continue to misrepresent what I do and don’t believe and you continue to offer these strawman disagreements up as “evidence” of my supposed “false teaching…” even though that is not the topic here or in many of the other places you bring it up.

    I’d suggest that you’d do better for your cause if you’d simply stick to the actual topics of discussion.

    Peace,

    ~Dan

  107. There’s an old Monty Python sketch, about a killer joke, where people would actually die from laughter if they heard or read the joke.

    If such a thing existed in real life, society would have to account for it — with joke warfare bans in treaties, etc. — but it would be stupid to act as if there was no difference between lethal jokes and run-of-the-mill, non-lethal comedy.

    What is true for a hypothetical comment that results in death holds true for a real-world activity that results in life.

    There is only one natural activity that is procreative, and there is only one kind of relationship in which that activity takes place. It is not inherent bigotry to recognize that other activities and other relationships are NOT equal to these.

  108. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    Dismiss it as “yucky” all you want — while no doubt you dismiss the physical revulsion many people have toward homosexual —

    What is yucky is the State expressing an interest in what goes on in people’s bedrooms. That is entirely disgusting.

    You continue…

    but the state has a valid interest in encouraging what religious cranks use to extol as chastity.

    And THAT is why encouraging marriage – gay or straight – is rationally in the State’s interests. If you say to someone, “You MUST be chaste or save sex for marriage,” and then you deny them the possibility of marriage, that is fundamentally unjust and it will disrupt society, as the practice would DISCOURAGE rather than encourage chastity.

    The arguments you all make that you seem to think are rational reasons against marriage equity are actually arguments in favor of marriage equity.

    Bubba…

    As I’ve written, the state has a vested interest in that one activity and in that one kind of relationship

    So, just to be clear: You are saying that the ONE activity the state has an interest in (in this area) is the sex act? NOT raising a family? NOT in strong family units? Just sex?

    Well, if so, you’re welcome to that disgusting belief, but this would be an argument that is uncompelling, I think, to most of us, and why you’re losing this argument – because your argument is irrational, immoral and quite a bit gross.

    ~Dan

  109. Dan, it’s funny that you’re deciding to pass on continuing this digression only AFTER you’ve raised the spectre of heresy. Expecting you to defend your claims and explain your hypocrisy isn’t evidently legitimate.

    It’s all performance art with you.

    It’s been pointed out on numerous occasions that no one is being denied the possibility of marriage: it’s just that, in order for a person to enter into a legally recognized marriage, he must enter into a particular form of a relationship and not other forms.

    The inescapable conclusion of your argument is NOT that the legal definition of marriage must be expanded to include just one more configuration (same-sex couples), it must be eradicated to allow ALL possible configurations, including — at a minimum — groups of 3 or more and groups of consenting adults that include close blood-relatives.

    And if you really think that it’s “entirely disgusting” for the state to regulate sexual activity, why do you continue to peddle a definition of marriage that is implicitly sexual? Why do you focus on romantic relationships and not, say, insist that marriage be redefined to include platonic relationships?

    You’re grabbing whatever’s handy, no matter how absurd it is for you to do so.

    • Bubba, do you have a blog?

      • Not a public one, in part because I tend to write in spurts — LOTS of stuff over a couple days, then nothing for a couple months.

        I apologize for going off the rails regarding Dan: I mean what I say, which is one reason I see absolutely no point in continuing any of these sorts of discussions in private, and the charade just grates on my last nerve.

        • Bubba, I dont object to your illumination of Dans hypocrisy, inconsistent application of standards, and heretical religious views. Its a valuable service given readers like Bryce commend him on his heresy not knowing his views are not actually biblical.

          I was wondering because I’d want to read it. Carry on.

        • paynehollow says:

          Well, the great thing about free speech and the liberty of religion and conscience is, Bubba and you are free to offer your opinions about what is reasonable, moral, biblical and good… and I and my tribe are free to offer our opinions about what is reasonable, moral, biblical and good, and people are free to look at our arguments and decide for themselves who is making the better case.

          Unfortunately for you all, on at least this issue, you all are failing to make a winning case. Your position is increasingly seen as not only not biblical, not only irrational, but as immoral, and so, increasingly, people will write you all off as having the losing argument.

          Thanks be to God for liberty of conscience!

          ~Dan

  110. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    it’s funny that you’re deciding to pass on continuing this digression only AFTER you’ve raised the spectre of heresy.

    Bubba, YOU raised the “spectre of heresy,” in your false charges of false teaching. And when I go OFF topic to respond to YOUR false charge, you suggest that I’m passing on your digression, as if it’s a bad thing?

    Look, I clearly don’t believe in heresy the way you all use it. I don’t think your heresy club you try to beat people with is a biblical idea. I used the word Heresy because it’s YOUR type of word, not mine. And I did not charge you with heresy, I said the teaching of salvation by works is what people like you usually would call heresy. You could clarify if you aren’t supporting a salvation by works approach, my statement was made in the form of a question, giving you the chance to clarify.

    Having said all that, I WILL cease this off topic digression, as this is not my blog on which to follow your digression. Anytime you want to take it up at an appropriate place, Bubba, I can once again dismantle your false charges and show how you are either misrepresenting me or making a call for some unbiblical and irrational ideal, or some of both.

    Your arguments simply are not that clever and can be easily (if time consuming-ly) dismantled and exposed for the cultural and partisan arguments they are (as opposed to biblical or rational). But someplace where it on topic.

    If you want to take it to my blog, we could do so. If John wants to create space here, we could do so, or you could write me an email and we could discuss it, man to man.

    But don’t try to bully me into submitting to your false charges or defending myself against them in an off topic ad hom. I will pass, thank you very much.

    ~Dan

  111. paynehollow says:

    Bubba…

    Bubba…

    And if you really think that it’s “entirely disgusting” for the state to regulate sexual activity, why do you continue to peddle a definition of marriage that is implicitly sexual?

    Marriage is the place for a healthy expression of our natural human sexuality. It is a healthy place for that sexuality, it is an ordered and responsible place for that sexuality. Beyond that, marriages and families are sort of the building blocks of society. Healthy families = healthy societies.

    Given that, it is in the state’s interest to promote marriage as the healthy, wholesome place for sexuality, and marriage and families as the building blocks of society. This is true whether we’re speaking of people with a naturally straight orientation or a naturally gay orientation.

    But trying to reduce marriage and family is, solely in the state’s eyes, about the sex act and it is THE SEX ACT that the state wants to regulate, that is gross, over-reaching and inappropriate.

    It is the difference between encouraging healthy, wholesome lifestyles, including making room for our sexual nature, and saying, “we don’t care what else you do or how you treat your kids and loved ones, but we’re wanting to make sure your sex fits inside this one box…”

    ~Dan

  112. Thanks, John! If I ever do start my own blog somewhere, I’ll let you know. :-)

  113. Dan, I would think that the state’s more holistic efforts of “encouraging healthy, wholesome lifestyles” would be what’s overreaching.

    I believe it remains obvious that your position is incoherent: you affirm that marriage is a building block for society while denying society’s right and responsibility to acknowledge the basic biologic facts underpinning that building block. There is only one naturally procreative act, and there is only one type of relationship in which that act takes place.

    About heresy, I made clear that I think yours was a “gross distortion” of my actual position, and it wasn’t at all clear that you deny the basic concept of heresy.

    Look, I clearly don’t believe in heresy the way you all use it. I don’t think your heresy club you try to beat people with is a biblical idea. I used the word Heresy because it’s YOUR type of word, not mine.

    If even the word itself is my “type of word” and not your type of word, it doesn’t seem that you believe in the concept AT ALL.

    And I did not charge you with heresy, I said the teaching of salvation by works is what people like you usually would call heresy.

    NO, YOU FLATLY DID NOT, AND YOU CANNOT QUOTE WHERE YOU DID.

    Instead, what you wrote doesn’t mention “what people like [me]” would call heresy: it invoked heresy as if you yourself believe in the concept.

    Quote: “Salvation by perfect knowledge is a form of a works-based salvation approach, and that is an actual heresy. Embrace grace.”

    Again, “that is an actual heresy, not something only your critics would call heresy.

    But, okay, you misspoke. You wouldn’t use the term heresy, and you only mention it because it’s something our side believes in. I do wish that, rather than so clumsily mishandling Alinsky’s fourth rule (“Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules”), you would be honest about what you really believe.

    It’s not that you disagree with any particular list of essential Christian doctrines, which you’ll describe as only “traditional Christian essentials” rather than ACTUAL Christian essentials, and which you’ll frequently denigrate as random and whimsical no matter how thoughtfully assembled.

    You disagree with the idea that ANY doctrine is essential.

    It’s not that you disagree on which teachings of the Bible are clear and unambiguous. You disagree with the concept that ANY teaching COULD be clear and unambiguous. To believe anything else is to deny our own infallibility: we cannot be certain about ANYTHING the Bible teaches, because if we were certain, then we could rule out good-faith alternative interpretations.

    If you were clear about what you yourself really believe, rather than mishandling other people’s positions in a kind of judo, everyone would see quite clearly the chasm between our two belief systems, and it would clear to anyone who knows the Bible that it does not plausibly lead to both roads.

    Or do I misunderstand you once again? Do you really believe in orthodoxy and heresy as real categories and not just traditional understandings? Do you really believe that there are essential Christian doctrines?

    Okay, just don’t tell me I’m confused, explain where I’m off base. Q.E.D me.

    NAME ONE ESSENTIAL CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE.

    Alternatively, do you really believe that there are some things on which the Bible is clear and unambiguous, so that good-faith disagreement is impossible? Do you believe that good-faith Bible study would lead all honest readers to conclude, “The Bible teaches X,” even including non-believers who do not believe the Bible on that point?

    NAME ONE CLEAR TEACHING OF THE BIBLE.

    Don’t just tell me one belief or teaching that the church has traditionally held, or one that is present in some early creeds. Don’t even tell me one belief that you personally affirm: GIVE ME ONE BELIEF THAT MUST BE AFFIRMED FOR A PERSON TO BE A CHRISTIAN.

    I’ll make it easy for you and give you two of the least controversial teachings.

    1) The existence of God: God actually exists, not just as a useful human concept or construct, but as the actual Creator of all that is.

    2) The historicity of Jesus: Jesus of Nazareth actually lived and preached in and around the Roman province of Judea in the early first century, and like all of us, Jesus was born and died.

    Note here that I’m not even touching the Incarnation (that Jesus is God), the nature of Jesus’ birth, the causes and consequences and details of Jesus’ death, or the events that transpired after that death.

    God exists: Jesus existed. PICK ONE OF THESE if you cannot think of another.

    Is either of these an essential Christian doctrine, such that its affirmation is required for Christians and its denial is forbidden for Christians?

    Is either of these a clear teaching of the Bible, such that all good-faith readers would conclude that the Bible teaches it, and anyone who disagrees cannot be arguing in good faith?

    I’ll make it worth your while, Dan. Fulfill my request and answer my question with a clear and unambiguous response, allow me a single comment to respond, and I’ll drop this subject — at least here and for the near future, more long-term if you insist and can fulfill your side of the bargain.

    After my response, you can even have the last word. You can denounce me as a bigot and Pharisee, megalomaniacal in my own self-regard and disturbed in my idea that the state has an interest in encouraging the classical understanding of chastity; you can gripe for my not answering your questions even when I have, and you can do all this while berating me for the ad hominems.

    Just provide a clear and unambiguous answer first.

  114. paynehollow says:

    Bubba, I’ve created a post at my website dedicated entirely to you and whatever questions you may have. Feel free to take them up there, where it will be on the topic (which, in this case, is whatever you want the topic to be).

    Respectfully,

    Dan

  115. Ugh, meant “fallibility” for “infallibility” above — ironically enough.

    I believe that human fallibility is a lot like human depravity, “total” in the sense that there isn’t one area of our lives it does not touch, but NOT in the sense that our every act is mistaken and/or sinful.

    On depravity, Jesus taught that we who are evil are capable of the good act of giving good gifts to our children (Mt 7:11), and on fallibility, if a good-faith effort could not reliably reach a single unambiguous conclusion on ANY point, then even divine revelation is a crap shoot if not altogether in vain.

    The idea that human fallibility precludes ANY good-faith consensus on even the most clear and emphatic revelation from God is functionally equivalent to God’s being incapable of doing anything more than mumbling.

    What good is to say that God need not mumble if our ears are so clogged that it always sounds like mumbling to us? If our eyesight is so poor that we can’t clearly read God’s writing, it doesn’t matter how great His penmanship is.

    The fancy way to put it is this:

    The metaphysical belief in God’s ability to communicate clearly is epistemologically useless if that ability is not coupled with our capacity to interpret reliably.

    The capacity to interpret reliably does NOT contradict human fallibility.

    I’m not saying that humans acting in good faith can ALWAYS reach the right conclusion in EVERY case, but only that we can reach the right conclusion in SOME cases — such as those cases when God speaks clearly.

    Consensus isn’t possible on every issue, but it’s necessary on SOME issues, perhaps a small number of absolutely crucial issues.

    Dan, I think we ought to be able to agree, not merely that you and I happen to affirm God’s existence and Jesus’ historicity, but that one or the other of these doctrines is either essential to Christianity or the clear teaching of the Bible.

    I don’t see ho our agreement that good-faith consensus is required on one of these points — and the implication that good-faith consensus is SOMETIMES possible but certainly not always — discards the concept of human fallibility.

    We’re still fallible, but we’re also at least somewhat competent to reach good-faith consensus despite that fallibility.

  116. Thanks, Dan. See you there.

    • “When we read the Sermon on the Mount we are not reading the words of the historical Jesus as presented to us. Some of his words are in there to be sure. Overall, we are reading a portrait of Jesus as painted by the author that the tradition calls Matthew. This Matthew is not an eyewitness of Jesus. It was a name placed on this anonymous collection many decades after the gospels were written, perhaps into the second century.

      For convenience we call the author Matthew as tradition has done so. But we should know I am not talking about the disciple of Jesus. It is not likely that any followers of Jesus wrote any gospels. To gain authority for particular texts, apostolic names or names of others involved in the movement were attached to these texts. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Thomas, Mary, Peter and so on.

      Matthew created this portrait of Jesus who is like a new Moses. Matthew’s birth story of Jesus is a retelling of the birth of Moses. In both cases a ruthless bad guy kills all the children but Moses and Jesus both escape because they are destined heroes.

      As Moses received the Law from Mount Sinai, so Jesus climbs a mountain and reveals a new teaching, the Sermon on the Mount. One of the ways in which Matthew creates this portrait of authority is to have Jesus say things like, “As you know, we once were told…but I say to you….” That is not the historical Jesus. That is Matthew.”

      OK Dan,

      Let’s try for a simple answer to a simple question. Based on the above quote, would you characterize the author is espousing anything contra Biblical? Or to put it even more simply. Is it possible to categorize the author above as a Christian?

  117. Beware of meeting at Dan’s blog, where he will censor and seek to control your method and style of commentary. It would be better to take up John on his offer to do a post here where YOU could be in the driver’s seat. Just sayin’, but you know that. Good luck.

    • I kind of agree with MA. I tried commenting there once and my comments were swiftly deleted being charged with being off topic.

      • I agree that that’s a risk, but I think it’s a very unlikely risk compared to some of the other items in Dan’s arsenal. I mean, check out the post and its comments:

        http://throughthesewoods.blogspot.com/2014/05/to-be-heretical-or-not-to-be.html

        I think it’s FAR more likely that Dan will continue to fillibuster on his end rather than start preempting my side of the conversation.

        • i looked at the thread after the first couple of comments, and it seems unlikely you’ll get anything close to a straightforward answer.

        • Indeed, Craig, though it’s not as if what he has written doesn’t all point in the same direction.

        • I think we’ve all tried to get some sort of simple answer on these types of questions in the past, and I suspect this will be no different. So far, what you’re seeing is a master level class on obfuscation.

        • paynehollow says:

          There’s been no comments deleted, something I have done on VERY rare occasions, probably less than 1% of all comments and that was only for quite specific reasons.

          As to the “simple answers” you speak of, Craig: If I give a direct and simple/short answer, 99% of the time, you all don’t understand my answer and when you parrot back my position, you get it wrong. So, given your collective incredible inability to understand my short answers, you’ll pardon me if I try to be quite specific in my answers.

          And what is Bubba asking this time?

          Name one essential Christian doctrine OR one clear biblical teaching.

          This immediately brings up the questions:

          “Essential,” to whom? “Clear” to whom? “Essential” for what?

          In trying to get that clarification before I answer, I’m simply being quite specific and giving a direct answer to the direct question he is wanting to ask.

          If he wants to know what I consider an essential Christian doctrine, I might say, “Salvation by Grace. Period.” But if he asks some Pentecostalists, he might get an answer like “You need to be baptized and have signs of speaking in tongues in order to show you are saved…” So, “essential to whom?” is a valid clarifying question.

          You all seem to want to criticize me for not answering questions when I’m trying mightily to answer a very specific question with a very specific answer and do so in such a way that you all will not walk away thinking, “Oh, Dan thinks X,” when I said and meant “A.”

          ~Dan

        • Dan, please obfuscate some more over here as well. You know we love it.

          Seriously, have you considered that the reason why you think people misunderstand you might have something to do with giving a 1300 word response to what is essentially a yes or no question? Also seriously, you don’t see worried when you get others positions wrong ( as I pointed out in my one comment on your thread), so I’s hard to get too worked up when you whine like this.

          P.S. same thing when you whine that the mean conservatives won’t answer your questions, while you blithely ignore questions addressed to you. Just a couple of respectful suggestions to help with orderly conversations.

        • paynehollow says:

          I didn’t get others wrong, Craig. The world does not revolve around you.

          And when I USED to give the short answers, you all get my meaning wrong. So I’ve increased my length. Still, you get my meaning wrong. So, with Bubba, I was trying to be QUITE specific to get the “essentially yes/no” answer across in a way that is meaningful.

          In this example, by digging into what Bubba was actually getting at, he eventually informed me he was NOT asking “What do YOU think are essential Christian doctrines,” or “What do the Baptists consider ECDs…” But, “What does GOD think are ECD?” Well, of course, that is a different question.

          So, you can see perhaps why it’s important to ask questions – to get at the actual question that is being asked when the questioner didn’t ask that question in the first place.

          ~Dan

          • Dan

            Either youre the worst communicator who’s ever graces these pages, or we’re all the thick-headedest…every one of us. Which seems more likely given that people cite back to you literal quotations youve made and you say those quotes dont represent your views accurately?

        • “When we read the Sermon on the Mount we are not reading the words of the historical Jesus as presented to us. Some of his words are in there to be sure. Overall, we are reading a portrait of Jesus as painted by the author that the tradition calls Matthew. This Matthew is not an eyewitness of Jesus. It was a name placed on this anonymous collection many decades after the gospels were written, perhaps into the second century.

          For convenience we call the author Matthew as tradition has done so. But we should know I am not talking about the disciple of Jesus. It is not likely that any followers of Jesus wrote any gospels. To gain authority for particular texts, apostolic names or names of others involved in the movement were attached to these texts. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Thomas, Mary, Peter and so on.

          Matthew created this portrait of Jesus who is like a new Moses. Matthew’s birth story of Jesus is a retelling of the birth of Moses. In both cases a ruthless bad guy kills all the children but Moses and Jesus both escape because they are destined heroes.

          As Moses received the Law from Mount Sinai, so Jesus climbs a mountain and reveals a new teaching, the Sermon on the Mount. One of the ways in which Matthew creates this portrait of authority is to have Jesus say things like, “As you know, we once were told…but I say to you….” That is not the historical Jesus. That is Matthew.”

          OK Dan,

          Let’s try for a simple answer to a simple question. Based on the above quote, would you characterize the author is espousing anything contra Biblical? Or to put it even more simply. Is it possible to categorize the author above as a Christian?

        • Dan,
          Thanks for illuminating the problem. I’ve never suggested that anything revolves around me. the fact that you seem to think that my advocating inn favor of my views being communicated accurately means I think anything revolves around me demonstrates my point quite well. In at least one instance I’ve repeatedly corrected your incorrect version of my position, yet you continually chose to ignore my actual position, and substitute your version of my position. So, as long as you continue to behave in this manner, don’t expect much sympathy when you whine.

          I can only speak for myself on this, but I’m confident that I’ve rarely said “This is what Dan thinks…”. What I’ve done much more often is to quote your exact words and to point out “This is what Dan said.”. When I’ve not understood what you have said, I’ve asked for clarification, and sometimes gotten answers.

          I also find it strange that you somehow think you have a better handle on the questions Bubba is asking than Bubba does.

        • paynehollow says:

          John…

          Which seems more likely given that people cite back to you literal quotations youve made and you say those quotes dont represent your views accurately?

          That may be the case except for two things:

          1. People without a political agenda contrary to mine – ie, non-conservatives or liberals – can read my words and never have these misunderstandings. IF I were truly being hard to understand, I would expect it to be hard-to-understand across the board, regardless of political alliances. This leads me to believe that a hard conservative starting point creates a sort of blindness that makes it hard for people to understand those coming from some other political position. I would say this is probably often true in reverse (ie, a liberal may have a hard time understanding a conservative).

          2. You can’t quote back literal quotations I’ve made to support your point. That is, if I SAY “X,” and I MEAN “X,” and you quote back X to “prove” that I mean A, you have failed to understand my position and quoted it back, STILL failing to understand my position.

          That you don’t understand that when I said X, I TRULY DID NOT say A, nor does it indicate I believe A is a sign of this partisan blindness.

          ~Dan

        • paynehollow says:

          Craig, do you want me to create a new blog post for you to go on your own off-topic red herring chase? I don’t want to leave you out if that’s what you want.

          Just let me know, and let me finish with Bubba’s exchange.

          Dan

        • Don’t put yourself out, you can just answer the questions here.

        • paynehollow says:

          That’s nice of you to offer on someone else’s blog.

        • paynehollow says:

          No, John. I have had enough of this snipey, biting back and forth, generally speaking, and don’t much to care to have it on my blog. I’m just trying to keep the off topic demagoguing and ad homming to a minimum on someone else’s blog, mainly as a favor to you.

          But I also don’t like Craig suggesting I’m backing away from defending my actual positions or from answering questions, because answering questions is sort of my thing, it’s what I consistently do and what separates me from many other bloggers and commenters.

          If you want to offer a post here for Craig to ask whatever questions he may have, that’s fine with me. Like I said, I don’t care for the tone of those sorts of questioning and would just as soon not have it at my blog. Thanks.

          ~Dan

          • You do back away from defending your views. You offer them in cloudy doublespeak then cry foul when someone “misunderstands”. You chalk it all up to one mans opinion.

        • paynehollow says:

          John, do you know how very often you refuse to defend your views? I ask you questions and they go ignored entirely. Occasionally, you’ll respond with, “I don’t feel like trying to make my case to YOU…” and that’s about it. So, you’ll understand, I hope, the irony of you charging me with not defending my views.

          If you don’t understand what I’m saying, then it would perhaps be best for communication’s sake to ask clarifying questions, as I do for you, rather than just make a false conclusion. As you do. Repeatedly.

          And my opinion IS one man’s opinion. Your opinion is one man’s opinion. What’s wrong with noting reality?

          I am trying to be better about ignoring off topic charges because way too often, you and yours accuse me of taking things off topic. So, it would appear I can’t win. If I ignore the off topic false charges, then I’m “not defending my position.” If I take them on I’m going off topic. What is the right answer on your blog?

          ~Dan

          • I regularly refuse to defend myself to you because of how YOU discuss. Youre dishonest amd disingenuous when discussing other’s views. Why should I indulge that?

        • paynehollow says:

          You can not point to even one time when I was dishonest, John. Nor have I been disingenuous.

          I’ve never been dishonest in discussing things with you. I have been mistaken, and I may have come across as arrogant (although it has certainly not been my intent), and I may be, in your estimation, incorrect on some points. But never have I been dishonest with you or anyone else in my blogocareer. And you can’t point to even one time where I have been to support your case. So there, again, would be an example of you refusing to defend your claims. And that was my point: You were berating me for not defending my views when I regularly do so and when you regularly don’t.

          Just as you almost certainly will not produce a shred of support for the false charge of calling me dishonest. You won’t, because you can’t, seeing as how I’ve never been dishonest with you.

          And interestingly, your unsupported charge of dishonesty – because it is false – is dishonest itself.

          So, where you charge me with not defending my arguments (generally when it’s off topic and/or an ad hom attack), I typically do, except when it’s off topic. Whereas you oftentimes won’t, with at least some people. Where you charge me (falsely) with dishonesty, you are being dishonest.

          Irony.

          And so it goes.

          ~Dan

          • This is why I pick and choose what I discuss with you, and what my problem with you is. You dont see it In yourself. I could point things out but youll just say im misrepresenting what you meant, even if I use only a quote. Youre a pretty despicable blog commenter.

        • paynehollow says:

          You make an outright false charge that I am dishonest, I call you on it and ask you to support your case or admit you misspoke, and that makes ME despicable?

          I will note that you, once again, failed to support your charge. Of course, you can’t, because your charge was false, so there is no real world evidence with which you can support it.

          But I’m despicable.

          John, is it perhaps that you feel some shame, somewhere, when confronted with this apparent hypocrisy, and rather than own up to your own missteps, you lash out at innocent bystanders?

          Something to consider, given the actual evidence.

          Peace on you, bro.

          ~Dan

          • Dan

            The accusation has been supported and demonstrated multiple times over. And I’ll say it again, you just dismiss it as a misunderstanding regardless of how explicitly you mischaracterize others’ views.

  118. But I was hoping to continue with the general discussion regarding the state conferring upon homosexual unions the same level of recognition now afforded normal unions of one man/one woman. I’m still trying to understand the position that Bryce seems to be taking in dismissing studies, both more recent and with more sound methodology, while giving so much weight to studies to which SSM proponents cling which are far more flawed. What’s worse, is that based on his comments, and I don’t plan on going back to find which one it was, Bryce has referred to Douglas Allen’s study based on a Canadian census in a truly false way. He spoke of Allen dismissing or rejecting some aspect of his study that results in comparisons between SS couples and single parents. (I could have his objection wrong or distorted, but as I said, I’m not going to go back and find his exact words. He can correct me now if he chooses.) My point in bringing this up is simply to point out that upon extensive review of the Allen material, what we actually see is his effort to compare apples to apples. In this, he has used only those subjects who have responded that they were raised by homosexual parents for an extended time, either by virtue of an actual marriage or within some common law arrangement that mimics marriage in most areas. In this, he can then make a direct comparison on outcomes of children raised in both, through the interviews with adult children in both. In doing so, he has found better outcomes for adult children of traditional marriages than for those who were raised by homosexuals (by which I mean both homosexuals and lesbians)

    Oops! Gotta go!

    • brycelancaster says:

      Marshal, once again you didn’t read my argument. I’ll state AGAIN the problem with the Allen study. By the way, do you have any more studies other than Regenerus and Allen?

      Allen compared children raised in COMMON LAW homosexual marriages with children raised in legal hetereosexual marriages. When actually compared to children raised in hetereosexual common law marriages, children raised by gay parents did just as well. (Also, according to you, 60% of the studies being thrown out showing that LGBT parents are just as good of parents are being thrown out because they have LGBT researchers. Why then, is it okay for Allen to be funded by and sit on the board of directors of NOM? If his study still has merits after that, than the MULTITUDE of LGBT studies then have merits as well)

      I’ll also post my last response, since you seem to have been unable to refute it. (Not a shocker, again)

      I am sorry too Marshal. Sorry that you have not raised a legitimate point in this entire exchange and continue to try to deny couples the ability to raise children based off of NO solid evidence or reasoning. The fact that you continue to use Regenerus saddens me as well, because it doesn’t matter how big the sample is, what matters is that it did not actually study the children of the situation we are discussing. It’s like saying that a massive study of single-parent households apply’s to same-gender households… apples to oranges, as you would say. It is YOUR side which has the burden of proof when you try to apply statistics of single-parent households to same-gender households. You have to explain how it is the absence of gender, rather than the absence of an entire parent, that makes that statistic valid.

      You also misunderstand me, (that’s not a shocker though). I’m not saying, nor have I ever said, that lust is the end all / be all of relationships. But it’s an important component. Romantic, physical, and sexual chemistry are all aspects in a relationship in which compatibility breeds the best outcome for everybody involved. What matters just as much is personalities, financial and mental stability, interests, and life goals. They are ALL important for happy relationships. In order for a relationship to be healthy, both partners need to have romantic chemistry. To deny this is to deny reality, and isn’t the goal here to “sift” reality?

      “I don’t need to have the same desire as you in order to understand the concept”

      Actually Marshall, if you want a thorough understanding, you do. You refuse to put yourself in my shoes, which is a sign of true cowardice. Scared of what you might find? Note, I’m not calling you a coward. But your actions scream of insecurity. You refused to answer the question. What would you do if the positions were reversed? I know what I would do. Give other people the exact same privileges that I enjoy. Would you marry someone and raise children with and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you find physically repulsive? Again, going back to John’s original post, this is why I view people with viewpoints such as yours as bigoted. A complete inability to put yourself in anybody else’s shoes. So I’ll ask again. Would you marry someone and raise children with and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you find physically repulsive?

      “a child is MOST likely to succeed being raised by its own father and mother, all other aspects being equal.”

      Where is your evidence for this? Statistics coming from single-parent households? Or the Regenerus study, which again, didn’t actually study children raised exclusively by same-gendered parents? Sample sizes be damned, it didn’t study the children of the pairs we’re talking about. Doesn’t matter how large it is. Or the Allen study, in which he skewed the demographics to get the result he wanted? You never addressed the point, (unsurprisingly), that when actually compared to common-law marriage raised heterosexual children, children raised by homosexuals faired just as well.

      And those are the only two studies you’re citing for the effects of exclusively raising homosexual children? I never minimized the problems of the 50 studies which showed that homosexuals raise children just as good. The sample sizes were small. But when EVERY major secular child-raising network in North America agrees that homosexuals make just as ideal parents, you have the odds stacked against you, (another thing which you didn’t address, not that I’m counting or anything).

      “What you speak of isn’t a matter of likelihood, but of possibility”

      How is that any different from the children of welfare parents, or of the children of wealthy parents, or of the children of highly intelligent parents, or of the children of low intelligent parents? It doesn’t matter WHAT specific attributes the parents possess, whether it be critical thinking, financial opportunities, masculinity, femininity, or ambition, what matters for the ideal family is that the child is wanted, and that it’s raised in a stable home headed by two parents who love it. THAT is the ideal family, and it’s slightly disgusting that through all of the facts I’ve posted you refuse to see that.

      “Children in early infancy begin to notice the difference and respond differently to their fathers as opposed to their mothers.”

      Does this have to do with gender or the fact that those are the two faces children see the most often?

      You also called my proposition that it’s not gender’s that’s matter but the attributes of masculinity and effeminacy “preposterous”. Why? Those are the traits that originally dictated the gender roles. They are the traits that are the backbone of gender roles. It is the TRAITS that led to the “tendencies” you talked about. Why does one gender have a monopoly on a certain trait? My best female friend is the most blunt, masculine girl I know. She loves roughhousing with her nephews, and hates “girl-talk” about “feelings, and all that crap”. She goes hunting, fishing, and shooting nearly every weekend. Does the fact that she has a vagina and boobs mean that she can’t roughhouse with the boys as much as a boy could, or that she can’t bond with them through physical activities as much as a boy could? (Both were “tendencies” in those articles you posted). Maybe girls can’t be MMA fighters at the same level that boys can, but for playing around with little boys, are they really THAT much more physically incapacitated?

      Going back to your statement that ALL of the pro-gay studies are flawed…. the article you linked to said that 60% were LGBT themselves. Okay, what about the other 40%? Small sample sizes? Well that’s not a problem anymore! Here’s a link to a great Australian study http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/breaking-largest-study-of-children-raised-by-same-sex-parents-shows-theyre-healthier-than-their-peers/politics/2013/06/05/68146 which had a sample size of 500 kids and was led by a college university, and headed by a non-LGBT researcher. Can you refute this article? It’s sample size is even bigger than Allens!

      Please, tell me how same-sex marriage has harmed the entire culture. It’s been legal in both the Netherlands and Belgium for over a decade. Canada, our fellow western country, has had it legalized for nine years now. Massachusetts has had it legal over in the states for the past ten years. Have children been harmed in any of those places? And where is the statistics to prove it? Some politicians have had their careers ruined due to opposition for it. It’s becoming more socially acceptable to talk about it in schools. But how has it negatively impacted the INSTITUTION of marriage specifically? Because if it doesn’t negatively impact the institution of marriage, than the societal fallout of those who oppose it is a just result. Much like the societal fallout of those who opposed women’s suffrage or interracial marriage. You have almost a decades worth of marriages to look over, surely you can find SOMETHING to prove that its’ been harmful. Oh wait, you’ve only used those two studies? Both of which didn’t actually study the children raised exclusively by homosexual couples? Throughout a decades worth of marriages, surely there is SOMETHING else out there. The best way to make your case is by showing how it actually has harmed the culture of marriage. But you haven’t done that. All you’ve done is say that a child needs a father and mother to be in an ideal situation. Well, it’s been legal in a lot of places for a long time now. Surely you can find SOMETHING to back up that claim.

      And if you can’t, and if you are denying these couples equal access to secular privileges based off of old prejudices… well, then you deserve to panned in history books. You deserve to have your kids be ashamed of a father who held ignorant and discriminatory views. And you deserve to know that you’re absolutely wrong. And we both know that now. :)

      All the best,

      Bryce

      (And again, feel free to completely ignore this. But if you do, than both of us know why you choose not to respond to the specific claims I make.)

  119. Thanks for citing the studies Terrance. Or did you? In fact, the only studies I’ve see people frequenting this blog posting are the Regenerus and Allen studies, both of which have been widely panned by the scientific community.

    It seems you have a short memory, bryce. Marshal linked you to several such studies a few months ago before you scurried away from this blog, without mentioning the names “Regenerus” or “Allen.” It seems you’ve spent the time building on your talking points.

    • brycelancaster says:

      He linked me to those studies. Those are the only two which actually said anything bad about homosexual parenting. Care to find any others?

      I’m sure that in the past ten years that homosexuality has been legal in Massachusetts, or the nine years it’s been legal in Canada, or in the twelve years it’s been legal in the Netherlands, you can find SOMETHING else other than two studies which didn’t actually study children raised by homosexual couples and compare them to heterosexual children raised in the same demographic, (common-law marriages where the parents moved around in the past five years).

      Come on Terrance, you can surely find SOMETHING else to make a credible claim. Something to counteract every major child-raising network in North America? Or how about every major Psychological and Sociological group as well?

      Check yourself hun.

  120. bryce,

    Don’t give me that. He linked you to Wintery Knight’s blog which itself contains about 30 such studies.

    Oh, you mean groups like the American Psychological Assocation? You know, the group who’s been caught lying about abortion? The same group the Royal College in Britain referred to as bias? That APA, bryce?

    Ditto, babe.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Not just the APA. You criticize me for allegedly not looking at those studies and yet you ignore American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, the American Psychoanalytic Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the Child Welfare League of America, the North American Council on Adoptable Children, and the Canadian Psychological Association. Want to take those down for me?

      As for Winter article… let’s debunk it, shall we?

      “Traditional marriages last longer”

      Winter cites a statistic that only 5% of same-sex unions last longer that twenty years compared to 58% of hetereosexual unions. There’s a pretty obvious reason why. Gay role models and gay couples didn’t start actually appearing in public until the 90’s. A study conducted in the early 2000’s of course wouldn’t have good statistics on the longevity of same-sex unions. Same-sex unions in the 80’s faced persecution and had no basis on which to model their union based off of. To compare same-sex unions formed in the 80’s to hetereosexual unions doesn’t follow the scientific method. Apples to Oranges. It’s only been recently that same-sex couples have been given the tools they need to be successful. The same tools as hetereosexual couples. If that statistic holds true twenty years from now, MAYBE it can be applied.

      “Gay men aren’t faithful to their partners on the same level as hetereosexual unions”

      The only statistic he cited for this was in 1984. Thirty years ago. Do I even need to explain why this isn’t relevant to modern day homosexual couples? Gay’s who formed unions in the 80’s are NOT the same as gays who form unions in the present day. That’s like looking at the statistics of education levels of black Americans in the 40’s and trying to use that statistic in the 70’s.

      “Domestic violence rates”

      Same problem as the others, he cited a research article which relied on the statistic used in the first point. It studied couples who grew up in a era entirely different than our own. Again, it’s like the racist politicians in the 60’s who used statistics of black Americans in the 30’s and 40’s to prove that they were different than the average human being. He also linked to the Ruth Institute Blog, which only used statistics from single-parent households.

      Those were just the studies of the case against same-sex parenting. All using outdated statistics geared towards an era in which gay men often lived in the closet, had no role models to form healthy relationships with a member of the same gender, and when the gay culture was completely separated from the rest of society. The gay culture was completely isolated in the 70’s and 80’s, and using statistics from the couples who grew up in that era cannot be equated with couples who formed from the mid 90’s on.

      “SSM is bad for civil soceity and business”

      Under this point he listed a bunch of sources about how people lost their jobs for opposing same-sex marriage. But if same-sex parenting isn’t really bad for kids, as I disproved all of his statements above, than those job losses were justified. Just like how CEO’s who express racist views are pressured to quit, or forcibly removed, (look at the Clippers incident). Therefore, if all the rest of his points fall, this one does too.

      He also listed a article about how the breakdown of marriage changes soceity, but without proving that gay marriage leads to the breakdown of marriage, it doesn’t apply. In order for gay marriage to lead to the breakdown of marriage, it would have to be a less than ideal situation for kids, yes?

      “SSM is bad for public health”

      His statistics for this was the high rates of depression, drug use, etc. among gay men who grew up in the 70’s and 80’s. This point falls almost immediately, just looking at the crime/depression/uneducated/drug usage rates of black Americans who grew up prior to the Civil Rights movements. Those statistics don’t prove that homosexuality automatically leads to a lifestyle of drugs and depression, but that discriminatory laws and hateful rhetoric towards homosexuality leads to depression and drugs. Just like those exact same things led to those high rates among black americans who grew up under a discriminatory era.

      Now, before you can begin countering my points, I’d like to see you take a crack at the rest of those child-raising networks. Also, I linked to a great Australian study in my last response to Marshall that studied 500 children in regards to same-sex parenting. Want to take a shot at that as well?

      Your discriminatory stances don’t hold up under actual scientific scrutiny. The sooner you realize that, the happier everybody is going to be.

      All the best,

      Bryce

      • brycelancaster says:

        Also, you said that he had thirty studies disproving same-sex parenting as valid… false. A vast majority of those studies were on either people losing jobs due to opposition of same-sex marriage or homosexual people who grew up in a culture of oppression turning to drugs and having higher depression rates.

        The only actual statistics he used to disprove same-sex parenting came off of studies which studied the unions of homosexual couples who started in the 70’s or 80’s. Again, this is like trying to study the education or crime rates of African Americans who grew up in the 20’s and 30’s. When you actually study couples who formed starting around the 90’s, you get much better statistics. Couples who formed n the 70’s and 80’s didn’t typically raise children, actually. But, as of 2005, there were 230,000 children being raised by homosexual couples in the US alone. That number realistically is much higher nine years later. How can you profess that they study their parenting skills when they weren’t even parents. They studied the rates of depression, violence, and break-ups in the culture, but those can all be explained in the context of the era they grew up in. They didn’t have the same tools as heterosexual couples. Now, in modern day society, they’ve finally been given the tools that they’ve needed. The only studies which actually measured their parenting skills in the modern day era have been widely debunked on numerous occasions, (you can look at my last response to Marshall to prove this) I still haven’t seen a credible study which actually looks at the parenting skills of homosexual unions formed within the past twenty years, which is when homosexual couples actually started to be provided the role models, the social acceptance, and the legal protections that allow them to be fairly compared to hetereosexual couples. Just like we don’t view any statistics on black americans characters to be valid prior to the 60s/70s. Try to say that blacks are dumber than whites and cite a study conducted in the 30’s. Of course you’d come to that conclusion, blacks weren’t equally educated!

      • bryce,

        Those organizations obtain their information from the American Psychological Association, or researchers who work for both organizations. And had you read the full report from the American Academy of Pediatrics, you’d see that it leans heavily on research conducted by — you guessed it – the American Psychological Association.

        And “gay role models,” really? That’s your excuse for the hilariously high rates of infidelity in the gay community? Give me a break. Same-sex marriage has been accepted in many parts of Europe far longer than in the United States and yet the results are the same. Homosexuals and their sympathizers like to blame every problem in the gay community on everyone else, and not once do you sorry people take responsibility for your own actions. Nope. It’s always the fault of straight people, particularly white Christian men. We cause high rates of domestic violence in the gay community, high rates of infidelity, high rates of substance abuse, high rates of suicide, and even high rates of “bug chasing.” You know, the act of purposely having unsafe sex so as to get infected with HIV. Yep. We cause it all.

        And Winter has about 20 pages devoted to this issue, and more than a single page has been offered to you. So don’t give me any crap about the dates of studies. There’s several European studies on that blog that are much more recent, and they show the same thing. For 40 years now problems in the gay community, across the board, remain steady, and each generation of gays only amplifies the point. Stop blaming everyone else and just accept that you need help. You are NOT normal. Your behavior is NOT normal, and the sooner this country recognizes that, the sooner we can figure out just what in the hell causes homosexuality and fix it.

        • brycelancaster says:

          I have to say Terrance, I see a lot of hatefulness in your posts. I suggest you get to know gay people and gay couples and see how they interact. The differences aren’t quite as extreme as you make them out to be.

          I think YOU need help Terrance, especially if you want to be an effective father figure. I’ve seen so many kids in my community, (NOT just the gay community), who have terrible relationships with their parents due to hard-line religious stances taken by them. I have a girl friend whose parents won’t speak to her unless she goes to church. That’s what viewpoints like your’s leads to. Choosing doctrine over actual relationships. It’s really sad, but fascinating from a psychological standpoint. I would start watching yourself, you don’t want to be a bad role model. Please, educate yourself a little more. For your children’s sake. I’m only saying this because every statement against same-sex parenting is a statement against my parenting abilities.

          I’m surprised at your resistance to the APA. It’s a completely valid association. You say it might be biased based off of… a single newspaper in Britain, was it? I can’t find any other associations which say it might be biased. I’d love to see some examples of the APA picking sides.

          And yes Terrance, I do blame repressive societies for high rates of negative statistics among minority communities. Historically it’s an accurate statement. Look at the domestic violence, drug abuse, education rates, and depression rates of blacks who grew up in the 30’s and 40’s. Would you be surprised to see their statistics lower than whites? Does that mean they’re a bad community or they were repressed for a long time? Look at children who grow up in abusive or neglectful homes. They have higher rates of those statistics as well. Bad people, or bad environment? The homosexual community is akin to a child who grew up in a neglectful and abusive home. Of course those statistics are going to be higher, even in countries where marriage has been legal for a few years.

          The gay community was highly isolated and is still struggling to come out of that. And in the European countries where it’s legal, persecution still exists, and the homosexual community is still fighting to try to un-isolate itself completely. In fact, a lot of great studies link feelings of persecution with rates of depression, thoughts of suicide, drug usage… http://www.apa.org/monitor/feb02/newdata.aspx. And those feelings of persecution are still just as common in countries like the Netherlands.

          I think people who need help are the ones who consistently belittle and tell other people that something is wrong with them. And as for the European studies that Winter used, all were taken from a study among men who were at HIV clinics, not from men who were in relationships. I’d say that those statistics from men who were getting tested for AIDS were going to be a bit more negative than average. It’s like going to a homeless shelter in downtown Salt Lake to get statistics on all residents in Salt Lake.

          Any other specific Winter points I didn’t cover? I looked at all the pages and believe I covered everything, and refuted everything as well.

          Homosexuality does not lead to unhappy lifestyles. Repressing homosexuals leads to unhappy lifestyles for them. Telling people that they should be ashamed of who they are leads to feeling of shame, sadness, anger, and confusion. Luckily, you don’t cause those feelings in me. I’ve gotten used to people telling me that, (to my face, I love Utah). I’m stronger for it. And yes, telling me I “need help” for wanting to hold hands with a guy is demeaning. Are you a stronger person for trying to demean other people?

          Do you actually KNOW any homosexual couples? Have you seen two men or two women interact in the context of romance? It’s pretty simple. We hold hands. We tease each other. We may peck each other goodbye. We hug. We laugh. We have netflix marathons and stuff ourselves full of fast food. Sometimes we go for walks or take my dogs to the park. Sometimes we get into arguments and break up. I just went through a pretty nasty break-up a few weeks ago, (he was a jerk and kept demanding sex that I didn’t want to give), but I’ve just started seeing someone new and I really like him. I don’t think it can last for a long time since I’m moving at the end of summer, but we’re enjoying it while it lasts. My first break-up was very amicable, I still talk to him at least once a week over Skype. We just didn’t really work as a couple, we were more like friends with benefits. And we both wanted something more than that. So now we’re just friends and we go to parties sometimes together, which is fun.

          Did any of the experiences I listed above differ from heterosexual relationships other than gender? This is why I’m so confused when you say I need help. I don’t think I do anything differently from my hetereosexual friends and family members. My romantic life is just as normal as everybody else’s, the only difference is the gentiles of the person. Which more often than not, I don’t even see. I’m a pretty happy individual. I get sad and stressed sometimes, like when my favorite person gets voted out of Survivor or I forget to write a paper for school, but life’s pretty good overall. I have great friends, a supportive family, and an active social life. I don’t see why I need help.

          Just trying to educate you. Gay couples do not throw each other in the bedroom chanting “SEX SEX SEX” on the first date. Or even the fifth. I know plenty who prefer to wait. And even if they don’t prefer to wait, and they don’t mind doing sexual things early, they still stay together. The couple at my moms work met each other in High School and have been together for 25 years. They got married last December, and now want to adopt. I want to be like them.

          Please, for the sake of the people who live with your or around you, try opening up your mind. There are no statistics showing that homosexuals are any less capable having loving, committing, happy relationships given the same social acceptance as heterosexual couples. The only thing standing in their way are men and women who DON’T want them to have loving, committed, happy relationships. Like fathers who only accept their sons if their son marries a female, or doesn’t marry anyone at all. As long as it’s not another boy, right?

          It genuinely saddens me that viewpoints such as yours still exist, because they can cause a lot of harm. But love, in the end, wins out. It always does. I just hope you don’t harm anybody in your personal life with your viewpoints.

        • bryce,

          You have nothing but excuses. Every study which shows high rates of some problem in the gay community is attributed to hateful Christians. You don’t for a second consider the possibility that we are not the problem.

          Of course, you aren’t the only one to offer excuses. Take this study from University College London, circa 2007, which surveyed 7,403 people and found that rates of depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, phobia, self-harm, suicidal thoughts, and alcohol and drug dependences were “significantly higher” in homosexual respondents, all other characteristics considered.

          From the article:

          ‘Dr. Chakraborty believes the findings are “very worrying.” He said, “This study is the first time the mental health and well-being of gay, lesbian and bisexual people has been examined in a random sample of the population.”‘

          And certainly this researcher harbors no bias. From the article:

          ““Our study confirms earlier work carried out in the UK, USA and Holland which suggests that non-heterosexual people are at higher risk of mental disorder, suicidal ideation, substance misuse and self-harm than heterosexual people.”

          He stated that, although the level of discrimination was low, it was still significantly higher than against heterosexual people. This “lends support to the idea that people who feel discriminated against experience social stressors, which in turn increases their risk of experiencing mental health problems,” he says.

          These higher levels of psychiatric problems in homosexual people call for greater efforts at preventing the issues arising, Dr. Chakraborty adds.

          In the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey, participants chosen to be representative of the UK population gave information on neurotic symptoms, common mental disorders, probable psychosis, suicidal thoughts, and alcohol and drug use, as well as aspects of sexual identity and perceived discrimination.

          The study is published in the British Journal of Psychiatry. Dr. Chakraborty and his team write, “Discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation predicted certain neurotic disorder outcomes, even after adjustment for potentially confounding variables.”

          Commenting on the study on the journal’s website, psychiatrist Dr. Mohinder Kapoor of the South West Yorkshire Foundation NHS Trust, UK, highlights the limited evidence in this area. He says “credit should be given to the authors in conducting this study.”

          But he pointed out that a cross-sectional study like this can only raise the question of an association, rather than test a hypothesis. The authors “appear over-ambitious,” he writes, because “one cannot test whether psychiatric problems are associated with discrimination on grounds of sexuality.”

          To study the true impact of sexuality-based discrimination on mental health problems, a longer-term approach is needed, he states.

          Whether or not discrimination is the cause, mental health problems have previously been found to be higher among homosexual people. In 2008, Professor Michael King and his team at University College London, UK, carried out a review of 28 papers on the subject. All were published between 1966 and 2005, and included a total of 214,344 heterosexual and 11,971 homosexual people.

          Their analysis revealed twice the rate of suicide attempts among lesbian, gay and bisexual people. The risks of depression and anxiety disorders were at least one and a half times higher, as was alcohol and other substance abuse.

          Most of the results were similar in both sexes, but women were particularly at risk of alcohol and drug dependence and men at a higher risk of suicide attempts.

          The researchers say, “There are a number of reasons why gay people may be more likely to report psychological difficulties, which include difficulties growing up in a world orientated to heterosexual norms and values and the negative influence of social stigma against homosexuality.

          “In addition, the gay commercial world in which some men and women may participate to find partners and friends may make misuse of alcohol and cigarettes more likely. The former in particular can have adverse effects on mental well-being.

          “Finally, our results add to evidence that sexual experiences in childhood in men classified as gay or bisexual may play a role in adult psychological adjustment,” they conclude.”

          So, you’ll note that these researchers offer NO EVIDENCE to prove that “lifelong discrimination” is responsible for these results. And why? Because they don’t have it, and being researchers from Europe, they freely admit that they don’t have it. They’ll say, ‘Hey, we don’t know what causes it. It could be discrimination but we can’t prove it’ and it’s that simple. More research needs to be done. Okay. Fair enough. They don’t placate homosexuals or act like liberal minions.They have honesty, integrity, and respect for the truth. They aren’t yes-men.

          And that’s why I find European organizations to be far more convincing than anything coming from the American Psychological Association. The A.P.A., as you know, conduct the same type of research and obtain similar results. But their liberal bias and allegiance to social change will not allow them to interpret the studies correctly. No. They create a whole new type of discrimination by blaming it on us repressive and backward Christians, without any evidence. How nice.

          By the way, I am a father, and an effective one. And if you bring my children up again then you’re gone. We don’t bring other people’s families into our debates on this blog. Dan was temporarily banned for doing it to John. Don’t do it again.

          And yes, I personally know many homosexuals, and they all disgust me. But I don’t want them treated poorly or discriminated against. I keep my disgust to myself. I’ll do business with them, drink with them, have dinner with them, and treat them as otherwise normal people. But still I think they’re disgusting people. What they do is unnatural.

          And why have you failed to address my mention of “bug chasing?” Is that the fault of repressive and backward Christians as well? We force homosexuals to have unsafe sex and PURPOSELY contract HIV?

        • brycelancaster says:

          “And if you bring my children up again then you’re gone… I personally know many homosexuals and they all disgust me”.

          Funny Terrance, you don’t like having your parenting skills called into question, yet you have no problem calling my entire demographic disgusting and calling me unfit to parent with the partner of my choosing. Hypocritical, much? . Can I say that ignorant Christian men disgust me without offending you? Can I say that ignorant Christian men are unfit to raise children effectively? Would that make it better for you? Because that’s not a personal opinion, that’s a fact that I’ve observed growing up in a heavily Christian community. Ignorant Christian men cannot raise children effectively in a loving and caring environment. I don’t mean to attack you as a person or single you out, it’s merely your demographic I’m trying to call attention to.

          I know a lot of white Christian men, and they all disgust me. But I don’t want them treated poorly or discriminated against. I keep my disgust to myself, (except on internet blogs). I’ll do business with them, drink with them, have dinner with them, and treat them as normal people. But I still think they’re disgusting people. The doctrine they subject themselves to is disgusting.

          The difference between you and me is that even though I personally am appalled by the way you live your life, I don’t try to impede the ability of the secular government to allow you to have religious weddings. Yet you try to impede my ability to have weddings.

          And if you ban me for saying any of those things, it means that you can dish it but you can’t take it. Because that’s the messages and the wordings that both you and Marshall have been throwing out consistently on this blog, only substituting “homosexuals” for “ignorant Christian men”

          I didn’t think Bug Chasing needed to be addressed. It’s disgusting, but that doesn’t apply to every homosexual person of course, every homosexual person I know would be appalled at the idea. Every group has their sickos. Just like heterosexual women abort babies at much higher rates than lesbian women, (since if a lesbian is pregnant it usually means it was planned). That doesn’t mean every heterosexual women wants or agrees with abortion. Bug Chasing is an awful practice that needs to stop.

          “But their liberal bias and allegiance to social change will not allow them to interpret the studies correctly.”

          Want to find me evidence of this? I asked you for evidence of the APA being biased. Yet you haven’t shown me any objective evidence. All you’ve said is that they have a liberal bias. Show me the evidence Terrance. I assume you can find some

          You failed to address my point about how the children who grow in neglectful, abusive, or bad homes often get those same statistics. I ask you again, is it because the child is bad or because the environment is bad? In every historically marginalized group, you see negative statistics at the time of oppression. Why is the LGBT community different?

          You blame me for having a lack of evidence showing that it’s the surroundings that cause high negative statistics among the LGBT community but yet you have NO evidence showing that it’s homosexuality itself that causes it. That’s like looking at the high crime rates of the black community and saying that black people are just born more violent. It’s arrogant, ignorant, and sad. You can blame the welfare system or a broken judicial system for the crime rates of african americans. But to say black people are born with more violent tendencies is ludicrous. So tell me, why is then okay to say that gay people are automatically born with more mental disorders? When the explanation for EVERY OTHER historically marginalized group has been the environment? The scientific method is not on your side. When the environment surrounding marginalized groups is used as the explanation for every other group, it DOES serve as evidence that can be applied to the LGBT community as well. And that’s a lot more than you have for your point.

          Also, you never answered my question. Why do I need help? I have no depression, no social anxiety, I don’t do drugs, I only drink once or twice every few months, (i haven’t had a drop since January because of college), and I’m completely satisfied in my personal life. Tell me, why do I need help? You told me that I should accept the fact that I need help, but tell me, what’s going wrong in my life? You couldn’t be arrogant enough to tell someone else they need help without any knowledge of what they’re doing wrong. If I find happiness out of my lifestyle, and other people find happiness out of my lifestyle, and nobody else is harmed, why should I try to fix something that’s not broken?

          Please, educate yourself. Maybe talk to all those homosexual couples you know. It’s not just their bedroom life that matters, you know.

          • Funny Terrance, you don’t like having your parenting skills called into question, yet you have no problem calling my entire demographic disgusting and calling me unfit to parent with the partner of my choosing. Hypocritical, much?

            It’s my personal opinion that homosexuals are disgusting. Homosexality is biologically unnatural, an evolutionary dead-end in fact, and completely at odds with the natural order of things.So, yes, I find it disgusting. Secondly, I never said you would be an unfit parent. I, in fact, argued with Marshal that children would probably be better off with homosexuals than in overcrowded orphanages. So, you might want to familiarize yourself with the details of an argument before responding to it.

            No. My point isn’t that homosexuals are/would be bad parents; my argument is that homosexuals do in fact have higher rates of mental illness, and there is absolutely no evidence that suggests I, as a Bible-believing Christian, am responsible for it.

            And my parenting skills could never be called into question because of my aversion to homosexuality. People have despised homosexuals for generations and still managed to raise pretty decent children.

            Can I say that ignorant Christian men disgust me without offending you? Can I say that ignorant Christian men are unfit to raise children effectively? Would that make it better for you? Because that’s not a personal opinion, that’s a fact that I’ve observed growing up in a heavily Christian community.

            You can say whatever you want about white Christian men, bryce. You can call us disgusting every day of the week and it doesn’t bother me. Why? Because I consider the source. I have no use for liberals, homosexualists, or abortionists.I dismiss their words as nothing but the irrational rants of freaks and undesirables.

            Yet you try to impede my ability to have weddings.

            No, I don’t. Why would I care? You can have a ceremony and devout yourself to the person of your choosing. I don’t care. You can even swish sweetly down the aisle in a little dress if you want to. It makes no difference to me.

            And if you ban me for saying any of those things, it means that you can dish it but you can’t take it.

            I told you to leave my kids out of it. I don’t care if you talk in generalities about white Christian men. It doesn’t bother me.

            I didn’t think Bug Chasing needed to be addressed. It’s disgusting…

            I think it needs to be addressed. Is that yet another problem in the gay community that I’m responsible for, as a white Christian? Please, enlighten us.

            “But their liberal bias and allegiance to social change will not allow them to interpret the studies correctly.” Want to find me evidence of this? I asked you for evidence of the APA being biased. Yet you haven’t shown me any objective evidence. All you’ve said is that they have a liberal bias. Show me the evidence Terrance. I assume you can find some

            I just showed it to you. The A.P.A. attributes every problem in the gay community to people like me – yet there is no evidence to support this idea, as European researchers point out. There is no evidence whatsoever. It’s nothing but a vicious smear at this point and you damn well know it. Does it honestly bother you that I don’t like homosexuals? Does it bother any of your gay friends? Does my opposition to same-sex marriage make you want to slit your wrist, smoke crack, and lay in bed all day long? I seriously doubt it.

            You failed to address my point about how the children who grow in neglectful, abusive, or bad homes often get those same statistics. I ask you again, is it because the child is bad or because the environment is bad? In every historically marginalized group, you see negative statistics at the time of oppression. Why is the LGBT community different?

            Obviously homosexuality isn’t the only cause of substance abuse, self-harm, depression, and other mental problems. Abortion causes some of the very same problems for women, as I’ve pointed out in various other threads. Many things can cause these problems. We all know that. But why is that rates are much higher in homosexuals, even those who report growing up in good homes with parents that accepted their lifestyle? Why? Why should they have the same problems? Clearly, it’s my fault as a white Christian…

            You blame me for having a lack of evidence showing that it’s the surroundings that cause high negative statistics among the LGBT community but yet you have NO evidence showing that it’s homosexuality itself that causes it.

            I fully agree that more research is needed before a definitive answer is reached. I caution prudence in such matters, but clearly you do not. You’re ready to string up those backward christians. And I’m ignorant…Right.

            Anyway. Given the knowledge we do have, I conclude that there is a statistically significant correlation between homosexuality and negative psychological instances. There is no indication of causation at this point, but I’ve seen no other correlating factors. And it seems to me that if “discrimination” were truly the cause, then you’d see a higher percentage in societies that still value traditional gender roles. Or, at the very least, homosexuals would suffer more severe psychological problems in those societies. But you don’t see that. It’s constant across the board. Societies that have little animosity toward homosexuals show similar rates and severity. This shouldn’t be if “discrimination” were a statistically significant cause.

            I won’t discuss the issue of black crime. We’ve discussed it before, as I previously mentioned. And when you couldn’t defend your B.S., you and Dan took to calling us racists. And I’ve seen no studies indicating that a significant percentage of blacks in the 40s and 50s suffered psychological problems either. I’d like to see that study.

            I think homosexuality is an illness of some sort. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that researchers proved beyond all doubt that homosexuality was in fact an illness that could be cured. And let’s say you were offered a medication to fix the problem. Would you take it? Would you choose to continue living as a homosexual?

        • brycelancaster says:

          ALTHOUGH my historically marginalized point about other groups still stands, I did find another great peer-reviewed study which describes exactly how the sampling was done, and it holds up under strict scientific scrutiny.

          http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/123/1/346.full?ijkey=NrncY0H897lAU&keytype=ref&siteid=aapjournals

          • bryce,

            Your point doesn’t stand. Blacks were far better off in the 40s and 50s than they are today, with respect to the number of which living in poverty and having children out of wedlock. We already went through this a few months ago in another thread, where after being thoroughly thrashed with facts, you and Dan took to calling us racists.

        • brycelancaster says:

          Did you read the link to the study I posted? There IS empirical evidence that high rates of family rejections and societal disapproval leads to higher instances of negative mental health. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/123/1/346.full?ijkey=NrncY0H897lAU&keytype=ref&siteid=aapjournals

          “LGB young adults who reported higher levels of family rejection during adolescence were 8.4 times more likely to report having attempted suicide, 5.9 times more likely to report high levels of depression, 3.4 times more likely to report illegal drug use, and 3.4 times more likely to report having engaged in unprotected sexual intercourse, compared with peers from families with no or low levels of family rejection.”

          The study there describes in minute detail the steps taken for sampling, demographic adjustments, and study methods. I can’t find anything wrong with it that suggests it’s an invalid study.

          Here’s another great study http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2747726/ which describes discrimination as a stressor which can trigger both mental and physical health problems. And not just discrimination, but negative attitudes and societal judgements. This explains how even in countries which legalized it, higher negative statistics can still exist. Take Spain for example. It legalized gay marriage quite some time ago, but the vast majority of the country is still Catholic and believe that gays are going to hell. Just because a country legalizes it doesn’t mean societal attitudes change. Families are still just as able to reject LGBT youth in Spain as they are in the US

          “There is no indication of causation at this point, but I’ve seen no other correlating factors. ”

          I just gave you one. If your family rejects you, your lover, and tells you you’re going to hell… wouldn’t common sense dictate that you’re going to be at a higher risk of turning to drugs or giving into depression? And if you can’t listen to common sense, look at some of those studies I posted.There IS a correlation between societal shaming and negative mental health statistics.

          Which reminds me, do you think that children who grow up in abusive or neglectful homes get those same statistics because there is something wrong with them as well, or because of the environment they grew up in? What’s the difference between a kid who is kicked out of his home for being gay and a kid who is kicked out of home because his parents are alcoholic? Both are at a higher risk of turning to drugs and alcohol, yet somehow we say that one of them does it because they have an illness and another one does it because of their environment. There’s definitely selective thinking at play here.

          “People have despised homosexuals for generations and still managed to raise pretty decent children.”

          Not in my experience. I’ve went on dates with plenty of guys who are ostracized from their families due to their family choosing a book over their own children. I don’t call that healthy parenting. It’s evil and immoral and I have every right to speak my mind to oppose it. Just like you have every right to say that you think homosexuality is disgusting. The idea of parents teaching their children to “despise” homosexuals is disgusting to me and makes me want to demand parenting classes for them, because they probably need it if they want that kid to grow up as a compassionate member of society capable of interacting in the modern world. But it’s probably better than an overcrowded orphanage, so Christian men have that going for them.

          As for bug chasing, that’s the result of a few sick individuals who need to be isolated from the rest of society. Increased societal acceptance will probably limit the number of them, along with greater sex education, (There is virtually NO education for gay men available for adolescent ages, which puts them in great danger since their demographic is the riskiest in terms of STD’s). But some people are just sick to the core, in every demographic.

          “The A.P.A. attributes every problem in the gay community to people like me – yet there is no evidence to support this idea”

          I just gave you some MORE.

          “I think homosexuality is an illness of some sort. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that researchers proved beyond all doubt that homosexuality was in fact an illness that could be cured. And let’s say you were offered a medication to fix the problem. Would you take it? Would you choose to continue living as a homosexual?”

          If it negatively impacted my life, I would stop being a homosexual. But at this point, I love being gay. I was blessed with an amazing family who supports me and a great group of friends who love me for who I am. If I wasn’t, and if my mother and father didn’t talk to me anymore or made me being gay a big issue, I could have just as likely ended up in some part of those statistics we’ve been talking about and said “yes” to that question. But at this point in time, nothing’s going wrong in my life. I have school paid for, my family supports me, my friends support me, I have a happy dating life… why would I say yes? You never did answer my question of why I personally needed help if I didn’t have any observable problems in my life stemming from homosexuality. As we like to say, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.

          “Does it honestly bother you that I don’t like homosexuals? Does it bother any of your gay friends? Does my opposition to same-sex marriage make you want to slit your wrist, smoke crack, and lay in bed all day long? I seriously doubt it.”

          I could care less about your opinion, but it bothers me that somebody with your viewpoint might reject a child or treat a child poorly if they happen to be gay. It bothers me that people with your viewpoint go to voting booths and take away my rights and privileges for no legal reason. And the reason why gay people are more likely to slit their wrists and smoke crack is not because of your opposition to homosexuality, it’s because their parents don’t talk to them and their local politicians are saying they should be denied housing and business because they like holding hands with the same gender when they walk into stores. They slit their wrists and smoke crack because they grew up in religious households where they were taught they were going to spend an eternity in hell for being who they are. Instead of saying, “They slit their wrists BECAUSE they like to hold hands with the same gender”, we should be saying that they slit their wrists because of how society treats them for liking the same gender. Their parents reject them, their churches demonize them, their friends abandon them… I’ve personally witnessed this all happen to people in just my life, and the numerous studies out there, (I can find even more for you if you have problems with the two I posted), back me up. How’s that for sifting reality?

  121. Well, Bryce. I think you’ve shown you have NOT seriously and scrupulously read much of anything, including my comments. So, since you’ve re-posted your last, I’ll shred it here.
    “Allen compared children raised in COMMON LAW homosexual marriages with children raised in legal hetereosexual marriages.”
    I don’t think so. In the piece by Regnerus about Allens’ study, he says:
    “he was able to isolate and analyze hundreds of children living with a gay or lesbian couple (either married or in a “common law” relationship akin to cohabitation).” -emboldened by me. He then says:
    “So the study is able to compare—side by side—the young-adult children of same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples, as well as children growing up in single-parent homes and other types of households.”
    I haven’t found a definitive explanation as to whether he uses hetero common law unions or not. As you might think it significant to suppose it makes much difference, I think it shows the guy is making an effort to compare apples to apples in the sense that all subjects are coming from similar, if not completely equal backgrounds to the extent that it is possible in such social science endeavors.
    I found this interview with Allen that discusses his study, the Regnerus study and the differences between each other and between them and the 59 studies reviewed by Marks that have been used by pro-SSM elements, including judges and political policy makers, to justify pro-homosexual legislation, particularly SSM and adoption policy. One point he makes is especially significant. If you throw out his and Regnerus’ studies, there’s no way you can pretend the others tell us anything on which we can confidently act. No scientific body would accept studies on other issues done in the manner of the 59 you believe prove there are no differences in outcomes between homo and hetero parenting.
    So my continued reference to Regnerus and Allen is due to the absolute fact that their studies are the far superior studies. What’s more, neither presume to make any policy suggestions as is so common to most of the 59. They aren’t politically motivated, or motivated by a desire to support the cause of SSM opponents in the way those conducting the 59 were motivated to support the SSM proponents. They were motivated by a desire to see if the results were legitimate and verifiable. You know…sorta the way objective scientific study is supposed to be. This is a good illustration of the differences between your side and mine. Your side is eager to find anything by which you can convince the culture to give you what you want. My side is eager to find out what is true and factual. The question then would be what we do then, and is your side honorable enough to accept the outcome of that inquiry. Considering how quickly your side latches on to anything that seems to suggest the proof you need, and your desperate attempts to immediately smear that which suggests you haven’t any, I don’t have much confidence that the truth isn’t as important to you as getting what you want.
    So to this:
    “Sorry that you have not raised a legitimate point in this entire exchange and continue to try to deny couples the ability to raise children based off of NO solid evidence or reasoning.”
    …you have clearly not been giving my links the attention you should have as just the two studies provide more solid evidence than the 59 to which you so desperately wish were worth a damn. And they only constitute a portion of what is available in support of my side of the issue. IN the meantime, you throw out this Australian study. I haven’t been able to find anything more than the “Interim Report” of the study and a very small summary that simply says it proves what you think it does. The Interim Report doesn’t give anything more than to explain how they intend to go about doing the study. And from what I’ve been able to glean, it doesn’t provide much that should generate any excitement. One thing was the following:
    “In relation to the potential population denominator, we have defined same-sex families for the purpose of this research to maximize comparability internationally, as ‘any family in which at least one parent is same-sex attracted’.”
    Do you not find that problematic based on your earlier critiques of Regnerus?
    It also has another flaw that Regnerus and Allen sought to eliminate or otherwise get around and that has to do with the fact that most of the surveying done is of the parents and their responses cannot be taken as unbiased. If you’re going to ask a parent to assess the development of their own children, it is not very likely that you’ll get complete objectivity.
    It does provide a survey to be completed by kids with homosexual parents. But this is only for kids aged 10-17. The two studies you dismiss deal with adult children. The difference is huge here as kids aren’t often aware of their own situation. As a quick example, my mother raised five kids by herself after Dad passed away. Her oldest was 10 years old. I was nine and the next oldest was my 8 yr old sister. She never had a full understanding of our underprivileged status until she was well into adulthood. In addition, it is not uncommon to hear from those who had it far worse than me who say essentially the same thing, that they didn’t consider or realize they were poor. Thus, to question children about their situation does not necessarily provide intel that is reliable for use in crafting public policy.
    Furthermore, you cited this study based on its sample size. But if it is just a bigger form of the same biased studies Marks critiqued, what good is it? Is it better because you had a thousand lesbians recruited for the purpose? I don’t think so. It’s just a bigger study resulting in the same worthless results.
    Now you can let me know if you need evidence for the necessity or superior benefits of both a mother and father in the lives of children. I’ve got four or five I can give you. But
    here’s a good one that actually spends most if its time arguing against homosexual parenting. This one, from I believe 2002, goes beyond merely discussing parenting outcomes, but also lists other issues that should be of great concern to either supporting homosexual adoption OR even support for SSM. They have to do with things like rates of depression, alcohol and drug abuse, spousal abuse, etc, most of which more current CDC and FBI stats show have remained constant.
    All in all, the burden of proof has been satisfied and has been for some time. But the supporters have allies on the bench and in every legislative body and when those allies ignore, dismiss and reject outright that body of proofs and evidences, no amount of it matters. THAT’S the problem and the reason the battle seems to be going your way. Not because any truth has been exposed, but because so much truth has been suppressed and denied.
    This is all I have time for now, and I won’t be responding to any responses to this until I have finished going over your re-posted post. Hopefully the rest will be more succinct.

    • I don’t know why my last sentence came out as a hyperlink. It is the same link as the one previous. I also don’t know why so much is highlighted as if it is all one big hyperlink, though only part of it truly is. I’m at a loss to explain it.

    • Oh this will be fun.
      “My side is eager to find out what is truth and factual. They aren’t politically motivated”
      Somehow, it’s okay to throw out a large portion of those 59 pro-gay studies due to the fact that the researches may be politically motivated, but the fact that Regenerus’s funding CAME FROM anti-gay groups doesn’t bother you? Or the fact that Allen sits on the NOM’s council? One of those 59 pro-gay studies was discredited because the researcher appeared in OUT magazine. If that’s enough to discredit him, why is Allen somehow not politically motivated? That’s an insane argument you’re attempting to make, both Allen and Regenerus had DEEP political reasons for reaching the results they wanted to reach. If that alone is enough to discredit a pro-gay study, it should be enough to discredit an anti-gay study.
      Although, if you’re still stuck on Allen, here’s a fantastic link that shows you everything wrong in his study. http://familyinequality.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/the-douglas-allen-study-of-canadian-children-of-gaylesbian-parents-is-worthless/ It discusses problem with his Sample Size, (apparently a big deal to you), his actual comparisons, and the fact that he assumed a lot of things in regards to whether they lived at home or not. Moving on, shall we?
      “No scientific body would accept studies on other issues done in the manner of the 59 you believe prove there are no differences in outcomes between homo and hetero parenting.”
      the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, the American Psychoanalytic Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the Child Welfare League of America, the North American Council on Adoptable Children, and the Canadian Psychological Association. Want to take those down for me? Are they all corrupted by the liberal media? Would you say that EVERY SINGLE major secular network dedicated to child-rearing is part of a massive conspiracy to undermine child-rearing? This isn’t just an appeal to authority, anymore than referencing Allen or Regenerus is. These are groups completely dedicated to doing what’s best for children in America, and they universally welcome same-sex parenting based off of the fact that no legitimate studies have been found that show their bad parents.
      “They have to do with things like rates of depression, alcohol and drug abuse, spousal abuse, etc, most of which more current CDC and FBI stats show have remained constant.”
      Does this have to do with the fact that homosexuality naturally leads to those things or that societal repression causes them? Kids raised in homes where they are neglected are also much more likely to have those statistics. Is it because they are naturally bad kids, or because neglect and societal mistreatment lead to negative statistics? Kids raised without role models teaching them how to have healthy relationships are more likely to turn into abusers. Is it because they are naturally abusive or because of the lack of positive role models? Black Americans had terrible statistics in regards to education and crime rates in the 30′s and 40′s. Is it because black americans are naturally stupid or because of societal repression in that era? Nowadays, black americans still have terrible statistics in regards to education and crime rates. Is it because their naturally like that, or because of the welfare system repressing them?
      That 2002 study focused on homosexual unions that started in the 70′s and 80′s, when homosexuality was never talked about except in terms of pedophelia and sin. There were no “out” gay couples in the media. There was no evidence that gays could have happy relationships. Most gay men lived in the closet with their families and hid their partners from the world. Should I be surprised that they had higher rates of abuse and depression?
      The statistics have gotten a LOT better since, and are continuing to get better as society starts recognizing homosexuality as being okay. There’s a strong correlation. Those statistics don’t prove that homosexuals make bad parents if given the same tools as heterosexual couples. IE, legal benefits and societal recognition. And the way to GET societal recognition is through legal benefits, (look at the statistics of Canadians who oppose same-sex marriage falling since it’s become legal).
      If given the same acceptance as heterosexual couples, homosexual couples are just as likely make ideal parents.
      “Now you can let me know if you need evidence for the necessity or superior benefits of both a mother and father in the lives of children.”
      How many of these use statistics from single-parent households? If you haven’t gotten a chance, look at my points with Bubba where I correlate Racial identity and Gender Identity.
      Racial Identity is a very important part of adolescent development among minority youth, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2868515/ . Just like Gender Identity. However, over 50% of all adoptions in America are transracial. Studies found that as long as white parents discuss matters of race and make an effort to include their transracial children in cultural events, those children actually develop higher self-esteem and report better feelings of racial identity than ethnic kids who are adopted into ethnic homes. Admittedly, if those white couples don’t make an effort to discuss race or participate in culturally inclusive events, the child’s self-esteem is harmed. But same-gendered couples are MORE than likely to have a lot to say about gender roles and sexuality. While there are some problems with transracial adoptions, would you advocate that we bar whites from parenting blacks, or vice versa? That child may be at a slight disadvantage when it comes to developing racial identity, and take some extra work to develop racial identity, but isn’t that better than not allowing that child to have parents at all?
      Likewise, going back to my points about gender identify formation in same-gender homes, nobody’s proven that it’s not probable that children will form healthy gender identity’s when raised by two parents of the opposite gender. The only statistics you can cite is that children are likely to develop healthy gender identities when raised by parents of two different genders. What you fail to do is then prove how same-gender households can’t do the same thing. It’s like saying that more women graduate college than men, which is a fact. But that doesn’t mean that men can’t graduate college, or that we should discourage them from doing so. Nobody is denying the fact that a child can develop healthy gender identity when raised by a man and women, but what your statistics fail to show is how a woman and woman can’t do the same thing. It only uses statistics from single-parent households, not same-gendered.
      All the best,
      Bryce

  122. Wow. Since last night, almost my entire comment looks like a hyperlink. I don’t get it. These newfangled computer thingies are a wonderment.

    Also a wonderment is the suggestion that I have not put forth legitimate points in this discussion that support maintaining the real/normal/traditional definition of marriage as the only one worthy of state licensing, given that it the only type of relationship that provides a real and legitimate reason for state interest. Every point in the arguments of SSM opponents is legitimate and worthy of consideration by those who profess to want what is best for the culture and its people. No legitimate point has yet been raised to counter any of them, or are there any that has been established that has not be easily shown to be less than legitimate. What we’re dealing with is denial on the part of the proSSM faction of the existence of those legitimate points due to the difficulty they have in confronting them. With that said, I continue…

    Lust. Is it important in relationships? Primarily in the attraction between the parties involved, and hopefully it is reciprocated. It isn’t always, so then what? But the lust one feels for money isn’t regarded as positively as how you regard lust in relationships. When the lust for one another that brought two together lasts with equal intensity throughout the span of the relationship, a rare thing indeed, that’s a lovely thing. But if lust interferes with an objective understanding of the person to whom one is attached, as is so often the case during the initial stages of a relationship, trouble often follows, and divorce results. Lust also compels one or both (assuming we’re only speaking of two person relationships) to ignore existing notions of right and wrong, or to alter those notions or even replace them with self-invented, self-serving standards of right and wrong. This is what is happening in the homosexual community as it happens between those who lust after the wives of others, or after women when one is already married to another. “If loving you is wrong, I don’t want to be right.” A great song with a horrible message that too many find profound. Lust compels people toward the object of that lust without regard to whether or not they should move in that direction.

    You regard lust as being fixed, and that if one cannot have the object of one’s lust, one must live life without a partner. But that’s just lust talking. It’s letting lust to all the thinking. In my case, I did not “lust after” the woman who is now my wife to the same degree as the woman previous to her who rejected me. I was never “head over heels” (which is a stupid phrase considering most of my time when awake my head is definitely positioned over my heels) over my wife. Yet there is no way I want to be without her. There is no one I can conceive being a better match for me. And there is no shortage of romance in our relationship. But our “love story” could not have reached this point without first having gotten beyond sexual lusts, which our long courtship allowed, so that we could see each other clearly and decide if those aspects that were not on our personal lists of what constitutes a good match would matter or could be accepted and tolerated—taking the bad with the good.

    But more importantly than all of that is that we could also consider whether or not we should continue and commit our lives to each other. I knew my wife long before we got together. I went to her first wedding. I found her incredibly attractive from the first time I laid eyes on her and even, in the presence of her soon to be husband, encouraged her to drop that bum and go out with me (a rejection she now regrets). But she continued that relationship and married the bum and while I maintained friendships with both, I did not seek to alienate her affections to satisfy. My attraction to her did not mean I could no longer live life or even find another to whom I would be attracted and lust after. Lust is important only if kept in its place.

    “Actually Marshall, if you want a thorough understanding, you do. You refuse to put yourself in my shoes, which is a sign of true cowardice. Scared of what you might find?”

    It appears you won’t be satisfied until I see myself as a homosexual lusting after some stud and reacting to cultural interference. This is nonsense. I say again, it isn’t what you desire, but that you desire that matters in whether or not I can relate. Of course I can sympathize. While my wife was married, I had to deal with my desire for her. As I’m married to her now, I must deal with desires for other babes I encounter. I must deal with my lust for all sorts of things, many of which I cannot have, and many other I don’t deserve to have, do not qualify to have or simply shouldn’t have. What’s so different here except the “what” of your desire? It’s the typical whine, “NOBODY KNOWS HOW I FEEL!!!” Nonsense.

    “What would you do if the positions were reversed? I know what I would do. Give other people the exact same privileges that I enjoy. “

    Then you really wouldn’t be putting yourself in MY shoes, would you be? If you would truly be, then you’d feel as I do now. You’d see, as I do now, that your position is one of self-centered-ness devoid of concern about true standards of right vs wrong and what one should do vs what one wants to do. You certainly wouldn’t be “giving people the exact same privileges” you enjoy because you’d recognize that they already have them, but are really seeking something above and beyond that. You’re not putting yourself in my position at all.

    “Would you marry someone and raise children with and spend the rest of your life with someone whom you find physically repulsive?”

    A number of problems with this question. I wonder how all your female acquaintances and family members feel about your description of them as repulsive. Does you mother know you find her repulsive?

    Or are you saying the thought of sex with a woman is repulsive? How often have you had sex with women? Have you had sex with a truly hot babe? Or did you force yourself to have sex with someone to whom you weren’t truly attracted and now choose to regard that experience as repulsive? I can think of quite a few women with whom the thought of sexual contact is less than appealing. But I can also think of many more that would be more than merely pleasing, yet because of my acceptance of true standards of right vs wrong would never engage with them (assuming they’d let me). I don’t buy the notion that there is no one of the opposite sex with whom you couldn’t have an incredibly profound marital relationship if you put your personal lusts aside.

    Does this mean I couldn’t find a man for the same purpose? Why would I choose to try to find someone with whom I would engage in abnormal and immoral acts? It doesn’t work both ways. But more to the point, what makes you think that because you cannot find a suitable partner of the opposite sex that you must be allowed (and I’m speaking here merely by true standards of moral behavior) to settle for satiating your lusts? What of the person that finds sex with ANY human being of EITHER gender repulsive? Or the adult who finds sex with any ADULT repulsive? Or the adult who finds sex with anyone but his mother repulsive? Each of these people, like you, would simply reject standard understandings of right vs wrong to establish his own which allows for his lusts. Tell them they are wrong to do so.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Unfortunately, WordPress wouldn’t let me post a comment I spent the past thirty minutes typing up, and I have neither the time or energy to make it all work again, (I wasn’t logged in, so when I hit comment it took me to the login page, and after I logged in my comment was gone).

      You say that your side has no political agenda and my side does and that’s a major reason, (along with sample sizes), why the 59 studies cannot be taken seriously. Regenerus was founded by a major anti-equality group. Allen is on the board of directors of NOM with a vested interest in stopping same-sex couples from marrying. Do they not have a conflict of interest? If 60% of the pro-gay studies can be thrown out due to bias, then the TWO studies proving your point should as well.

      Here’s everything wrong with the Allen study. Take a look http://familyinequality.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/the-douglas-allen-study-of-canadian-children-of-gaylesbian-parents-is-worthless/

      “This one, from I believe 2002, goes beyond merely discussing parenting outcomes, but also lists other issues that should be of great concern to either supporting homosexual adoption OR even support for SSM. They have to do with things like rates of depression, alcohol and drug abuse, spousal abuse, etc, most of which more current CDC and FBI stats show have remained constant.”

      Is this because of homosexuality naturally leading to those things or societal repression of homosexuality leading to those things? It is people like YOU who make those statistics happen. If a child is raised in a home of neglect, he is more likely to develop those same statistics. Is that because he’s a bad child, or because he was raised in a bad environment? Likewise, those statistics came from homosexual unions formed in the 70’s and 80’s, which was NOT the best time to be a homosexual. If you see, those statistics improve over time and are getting better and better the more society recognizes homosexuality as natural. In short, none of those statistics prove that given the same tools as heteroesexuals, homosexuals can be just as happy as people.

      “Now you can let me know if you need evidence for the necessity or superior benefits of both a mother and father in the lives of children.”

      Using statistics from single-parent households to provide the alternative, right?

      Nobody is denying that children can develop healthy gender identities when presented with a mother and father. What you fail to do is show how they can’t develop those same identities with a mother and mother or father and father. Women who start college graduate at a 25% greater rate than men, but that doesn’t mean that men can’t graduate college or should be discouraged from doing so. Likewise, just because a father and mother leads to healthy gender identity doesn’t mean that a mother and mother can’t do the same. You haven’t gone that extra step to prove that point other than two incredibly biased studies with lots of flaws.

      Please, tell me how same-sex marriage has harmed the entire culture. It’s been legal in both the Netherlands and Belgium for over a decade. Canada, our fellow western country, has had it legalized for nine years now. Massachusetts has had it legal over in the states for the past ten years. Have children been harmed in any of those places? And where is the statistics to prove it? Some politicians have had their careers ruined due to opposition for it. It’s becoming more socially acceptable to talk about it in schools. But how has it negatively impacted the INSTITUTION of marriage specifically? Because if it doesn’t negatively impact the institution of marriage, than the societal fallout of those who oppose it is a just result. Much like the societal fallout of those who opposed women’s suffrage or interracial marriage. You have almost a decades worth of marriages to look over, surely you can find SOMETHING to prove that its’ been harmful. Oh wait, you’ve only used those two studies? Both of which didn’t actually study the children raised exclusively by homosexual couples? Throughout a decades worth of marriages, surely there is SOMETHING else out there. The best way to make your case is by showing how it actually has harmed the culture of marriage. But you haven’t done that. All you’ve done is say that a child needs a father and mother to be in an ideal situation. Well, it’s been legal in a lot of places for a long time now. Surely you can find SOMETHING to back up that claim.

      “Lust is important only if kept in its place.”

      You seem to be under the asinine impression that all homosexuals blindly throw themselves at each other with no regard to personalities, financial and emotional stabilities, interests, compatibility… etc. All I’m saying is that it’s important for SOME aspect of physical chemistry to be there. You agree with that. You have to be attracted to SOME degree to whom you’re spending the rest of your life with. Mentally and physically.

      You never did answer the question, and claim that you aren’t a coward for not doing so.

      Would you marry with, have children with, and spend the rest of your life with somebody who’s naked body physically repulses you? Would you be immature for not doing so?

      I assume you’re attracted to your wife. (Who under biblical standards should actually go to the brother of her first husband, or something. I’m not well versed in fairy tales). Were you immature for marrying somebody who you were attracted to physically? NOBODY is denying that it’s important to have a mental and emotional connection with a person. As I said earlier, (and which you ignored), physical intimacy is just a piece of the puzzle which comprises of things such as interests, hobbies, life goals, viewpoints, and personalities. You are the one who’s only focusing on the physical intimacy section. I don’t have sex with every guy I meet. When I get into serious relationships, sex becomes something serious and something to wait for. But what makes that relationship easy is knowing that even though I may not be having sex with him, I find both his personality and his form attractive. The personality is the most important part, but I would get into a relationship with someone who I’m not attracted to at all.

      “I wonder how all your female acquaintances and family members feel about your description of them as repulsive”

      I find the naked female body repulsive. When my friends tease me about the thought of vaginas or anything like that, and I outright tell them to stop since it’s disgusting. I know plenty of gay men who’ve had sex with females. Who wanted to make to make it work. And were miserable the entire time. I try looking at straight porn and I feel like vomiting. Much like how you would feel if you tried to watch anal sex between two men.

      “I don’t buy the notion that there is no one of the opposite sex with whom you couldn’t have an incredibly profound marital relationship if you put your personal lusts aside.”

      Try researching the demise of the ex-gay ministry. That’s like me saying that I don’t buy the notion that you couldn’t have a happy marital relationship with men if you put your personal lusts aside. It’s demeaning and offensive.

      “Why would I choose to try to find someone with whom I would engage in abnormal and immoral acts?”

      I imagine you’re also against wives giving their husbands blow jobs, since the mouth is supposed to be used for eating. Or a wife and husband using a sex toy to spice things up. And how is consensual sex between two adults immoral in any standard other than biblically? And a biblical standard of immorality is immoral to force on those who don’t follow it. It sure would be hypocritical for conservatives to lament gays forcing their lifestyle on everybody after forcing their definition of morality on everybody else.

      “What of the person that finds sex with ANY human being of EITHER gender repulsive? Or the adult who finds sex with any ADULT repulsive? Or the adult who finds sex with anyone but his mother repulsive?”

      People who are Asexual should be completely free to not have sex with anyone. Or to marry someone else who feels the same way. The pedophile should be stopped because of lack of consent, (that analogy is really getting old, you should find a new one). And as for the incestous relationship? If the mother doesn’t consent, then it should be stopped. Otherwise, what two consenting adults do with their own bodies doesn’t affect me. I’m personally disgusted by it and think it’s wrong, but unless statistics come out proving that it does harm to others or to society, I’m not arrogant enough to force my version of morality on other people.

      • brycelancaster says:

        *I WOULDN’T get into a relationship with someone who I wasn’t attracted to at all

        *Regenerus was FUNDED by a major anti-equality group

    • brycelancaster says:

      It looks like my first post did post after all. I apologize for the repetitions. It’s right above your misinformed post about “lust”

  123. brycelancaster says:

    Oh, and as for the homosexual activists who stack the courts in their favor? Our all the rulings granting marriage equality, only three judges were nominated by democrats. Every other judge was either by George Bush, George HW Bush, or Ronald Reagan.

  124. more for Bryce—

    ““a child is MOST likely to succeed being raised by its own father and mother, all other aspects being equal.”

    Where is your evidence for this? “

    This gets into the previous debate about the validity of the various studies already discussed, and your unwillingness to judge those I’ve put forth by the same standards you’ve judged those which serve your purpose. No study is perfect, but the studies I’ve put forth are simply better studies, and if we are going to use studies to bolster our arguments for our positions, the studies you favor are incapable of providing much basis because of their greater flaws. Said again, if you dismiss the studies I favor, there’s no honest way to hold up yours as superior because they simply are not. But not because of their conclusions, but because of the manner in which they’ve arrived at them.

    In addition, as I’ve said, I have four or five studies devoted simply to the importance of fathers and mothers in the development of children. They are not seeking to make a statement one way or the other regarding SSM, but simply the impact of paternal and maternal influence on children and the impact of the absence of either influence. Your problem seems to suggest that it is significant that or if they can only be compared to single parent homes. But what better way to compare and contrast? You would suppose that the problem is in the number of parents and that that is of greater importance. Based on what? If numbers matter more than the presence of both a mother and a father, then it would seem obvious that ten parents would be better than two. Screw the battle for SSM. What we need to support is polygamy!

    ” Or the Allen study, in which he skewed the demographics to get the result he wanted?”

    He didn’t do this and it is quite clear that his purpose was to provide the best possible apples to apples comparison. Your implication is slanderous without solid proof. At the same time, you laud the Australian study with includes single parent homes as well as father/mother households where one of the parents might have same-sex attraction. Who’s doing the most for accuracy? Not the studies you favor.

    “…when actually compared to common-law marriage raised heterosexual children, children raised by homosexuals faired just as well.”

    I don’t recall you providing any proof for this. And keep in mind: should there be instances where children did OK, this does not mean that it is equally likely.

    “But when EVERY major secular child-raising network in North America agrees that homosexuals make just as ideal parents, you have the odds stacked against you,,,”

    If every major secular child-raising network in NA agree with you, one must ask the source of the information that compels this belief. If it comes from the same batch of flawed studies, then I simply have ever dishonest network stacked against me. And frankly, this is the reality I’ve already acknowledged. OR, are you suggesting that all those major networks were responsible for each of those 59 crappy studies? The result is the same: policy suggestions based on bad studies put forth as definitive proofs. Not a good thing.

    “How is that any different from the children of welfare parents, or of the children of wealthy parents, or of the children of highly intelligent parents, or of the children of low intelligent parents?”

    The point here is in regards to what is possible versus what is likely. You think that because it is possible for a child’s outcome to be positive despite being raised by homosexuals that that equates to likely. The children of welfare parents might become stinking rich, but it is more likely that they won’t. At the same time, it is MORE likely that the child of wealthy parents will ALSO be stinking rich, while it is possible that he could be a bum. I don’t deny the possibility that a child raised by lesbians might grow up to be well adjusted with a normal view of relationships and a sound understanding of inter-gender interaction, I just don’t believe you can prove that it is AS likely as a child of hetero parents (if likely at all). YOUR proof exists in the very shabby studies you favor. What’s more, you would alter our laws and adoption policies based on possibility, while I favor policy based on what is most likely. Even if we’re not discussing the welfare of children, that’s the superior play.

    “You also called my proposition that it’s not gender’s that’s matter but the attributes of masculinity and effeminacy “preposterous”. Why? Those are the traits that originally dictated the gender roles.”

    I don’t know how you come to that conclusion. Seems another assertion to me. I don’t believe an effeminate man necessarily has maternal instincts. Parents are role models. They model behaviors that the children then learn. An effeminate man merely teaches the son something about being effeminate. An effeminate homosexual merely teaches the son how to be an effeminate homosexual and how to relate to the other homosexual. It is not the same as a real man dealing with a real wife. Each type of man imparts something different to the child through their modeling of their particular behaviors. It is ridiculous to believe that an effeminate man can teach a daughter how to truly be a mother. He can only teach her how to diaper and feed a baby, but not how to be a mother to that baby. This isn’t rocket science.

    • brycelancaster says:

      Your right Marshall, it isn’t rocket science. I invite you to read my above posts for information on how you’re logic is flawed. I know it’s hard to admit, but the saving face at this point is getting ridiculous.

  125. “Please, tell me how same-sex marriage has harmed the entire culture. It’s been legal in both the Netherlands and Belgium for over a decade.”

    Studies of the effects in the Netherlands show a marked increase in out of wedlock births. The effect of SSM on the general view of the importance of marriage cannot be stated with absolute certainty, but to say it played no role at all cannot be, either. Yet, there it is. Since the time of legalization, the numbers went the wrong way. I would say, as I always have, that the push for acceptance of homosexuality is not a cause, but another symptom of a more general decay of morality in our culture. At the same time, a symptom can become a catalyst for worse, as we now see happening. This “tolerance” has made it easier for other lifestyles to gain acceptance. Polygamy being the most obvious. I would say that the culture in general doesn’t look at much with the same level of concern it once did, be it merely co-habitation of unmarried men and women, to sex among our youth, to homosexuality to anything else one might wish to engage. One led to the next and each makes what follows easier to exist. Again, not rocket science.

    Loosening standards of morality, then, led to an increase of all the ills that immorality breeds: disease, spousal and child abuse, suicide, depression, drug and alcohol abuse, the belief that killing one’s unborn equates to healthcare. And in each of these areas, we’ve seen higher percentages amongst the homosexual community, even in areas where tolerance is highest. CDC and FBI stats continue to bear this out.

    There is also more government intrusion as a result of altering the traditional notions of marriage, which began with the introduction of no-fault divorce and doesn’t get any better by fooling with the definitional criteria for marriage.

    We see, and have definitely seen in Canada and Massachusetts, legal penalties for speaking out about the sinfulness of homosexuality (legally hate speech in Canada and other countries) and governmental interference of parents who object to immoral teaching regarding homosexuality (or sex in general).

    People have lost their jobs for simply expressing their opinions about marriage and human sexuality even in forums totally unrelated to their jobs.

    Don’t pretend this movement hasn’t had a negative impact on the culture. That’s a lie.

  126. brycelancaster says:

    “If every major secular child-raising network in NA agree with you, one must ask the source of the information that compels this belief.”

    yes, ask yourself this. Those 59 studies may have small samples, but they proved that homosexual couples can raise children in just as ideal circumstances. (Even taking out the “biased” studies, which is 60% according to the other article. That’s still twenty studies which prove my point, and if you take out all biased studies, that removes the only two which say that they make bad parents as well. Standards apply to both sides, unfortunately for anti-equality proponents). So twenty unbiased studies with smaller samples proves that they can make ideal parents in the right circumstances. JUST LIKE HETEREOSEXUAL COUPLES CAN. There are plenty of circumstances which stop heterosexual couples from being ideal parents, like the 50% rate of unwanted pregnancies. But given the right circumstances, they can be ideal parents JUST LIKE HOMOSEXUAL COUPLES.

    Also, if every major child-rearing network in North America arrives at the same conclusion, you also have to ask yourself why they rejected the two pathetic studies “your side” offered up. Because they’re a part of the massive liberal conspiracy? Or because a group of highly qualified board members with degrees in child psychology realized that having two moms is just as ideal as having a mom and a dad, as long as those two moms show love, affection, and discuss gender roles in the household.

    Again, your efforts to save face at this point are saddening.

  127. brycelancaster says:

    “We see, and have definitely seen in Canada and Massachusetts, legal penalties for speaking out about the sinfulness of homosexuality (legally hate speech in Canada and other countries) and governmental interference of parents who object to immoral teaching regarding homosexuality (or sex in general).

    People have lost their jobs for simply expressing their opinions about marriage and human sexuality even in forums totally unrelated to their jobs.”

    That’s called the free market, and has absolutely nothing to do with the institution of marriage. Just like the Clippers owner who was fired for racist remarks, society is coming to an understanding that any speech that attempts to take away the privileges of others for unjust reasons shouldn’t be tolerated. I asked how it harmed the institution of marriage. Because if it didn’t harm the institution of marriage, than those results were just becuase those people tried to take away the priviliges of others for no legitimiate reason.

    “we’ve seen higher percentages amongst the homosexual community, even in areas where tolerance is highest.”

    But those percentages lower the more tolerance grows. Even in the most tolerant areas homosexuals still face repression and hate, you just have to go online to a Yahoo comment board, (or to this site), to get that. There’s a scientific correlation that in the most tolerant areas, the statistics are lower. And they lower the more tolerant the areas become. And even the most tolerant areas can get more tolerant.

    “Studies of the effects in the Netherlands show a marked increase in out of wedlock births.”

    This is happening all over the world, not just because Netherlands legalized gay marriage. How are two men getting married leading girls to think it’s okay not to marry boys before having kids? Because heterosexual marriage is less important? How does including homosexuality in marriage lessen the impacts of heterosexual marriage? Because it is “immoral”? How is it immoral in any standard other than biblically? Because it’s not natural? I’m typing this on a thousand dollar machine to someone who lives hundreds of miles away who can read this in an instant. In a few minutes I’m going to get into my two ton vehicle which can take me a store which would otherwise take me half a day to get to on foot. Just because something isn’t “natural” doesn’t mean it should be discouraged.

  128. Bryce,

    Due to a variety of personal concerns, and the effect of those concerns on my ability to properly engage, I must suspend my part in this discussion for the time being. In the meantime, I will be reviewing all the links offered here as time allows until such time that I can take up the gauntlet once again. At that time, I may restart the discussion at my blog, here if John allows, or begin a new thread here as a guest contributor, if John allows that.

    In the meantime, know that I have looked at Cohen’s analysis of Allen’s work, though only in more cursory way. I did, however, look into Cohen himself. His website allows one to view all publications and articles in which he took part. There, we can find the full rendering of his opinion that is the basis of the link you think ends the discussion. I find it most notable that nowhere in that list of publications did I see anything that discusses the premise that Allen and Regnerus addresses in their studies; nothing that touches on any of the 59 studies to determine if they are worth a damn, either.

    That’s part of the issue between us that you continue to diminish. On my side, I do not regard either Regnerus nor Allen as the final word that settles the debate in my favor (by which I mean the opposition to SSM and homosexual parenting). But I believe it is quite clear, or have thought as much, that they accomplished their purpose, which was simply to question that which YOUR studies do not in any way prove—that there is no difference in outcomes for children of homo vs hetero parents.

    Cohen didn’t feel it necessary to spend any time, that I could find, on addressing the validity of ANY study that suggests no difference, so I find it curious that his assessment of Allen’s work should stand as a deal breaker for you. Basically, from my cursory look, he has determined that Allen’s work was not legitimate, methodologically speaking, in making his case against studies that were not legitimate, methodologically speaking, in making theirs. We are put back at square one: You merely asserting and assuming your position has been proven while dismissing rebuttals through a level of scrutiny you refuse to apply to your favored studies.

    In any case, there is much work to be done before attempting to carry this discussion any further. It’s become to ragged and disjointed. See ya soon I hope.

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