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Jay Evensen: Gay marriage opponents stereotyped by ruling

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  • Contrariuserer mid-state, TN
    July 3, 2013 11:08 a.m.

    @genetics --

    "A helper kin is not an ideal situation"

    "Ideal" situations are not required. This is evolution, after all -- it's a complicated and messy process. "Ideal" situations are few and far between.

    In fact, you appear to be placing artificial restrictions on evolution and fitness. We **know** that homosexual behaviors have selective value, because they are so common out in nature. It is not necessary that we know "why" or "how" these behaviors contribute to fitness. We can see that they DO contribute in those situations, even if we don't understand the mechanism (or mechanisms), by their widespread existence.

    We do, nonetheless, see the direct benefits to homosexual behaviors in at least some cases. For instance, female-female interactions in bonobos increase group cohesion and decrease aggression. In another example, male-male pairs of black swans are more successful at raising chicks (which, remember, are often biologically related to at least one of the pair) than male-female pairs are. And I'm sure that there are many other cases where the benefits are evident, as well. But again -- we don't need to know the precise mechanisms involved in order to recognize that the benefits exist.

  • genetics Canada, 00
    July 3, 2013 10:19 a.m.

    Contrariuser:
    Thanks again, but you still miss the point. A helper kin is not an ideal situation, unless there is a direct genetic connection, such as mother helping a daughter with a grandchild. There is a specific mitochondrial fitness component as well with maternal descent. The grandmother has already made her contribution and is ensuring that it continues into a second generation and hopefully beyond. However, every individual is a unique genetic entity. Our nuclear genomes have combinations that have not been tried. To test these variables, the highest fitness value is achieved by an individual having offspring. A helper kin is a surrogate way of achieving a reduced fitness value. Offspring return the greatest value because of the direct contribution to the gene pool. In fact, there is a hierarchy in many animal systems so that specific, dominant genes make it into the next generation! Many in the group are reduced to helper status via forced subordination or lower group status and if strong enough, will challenge the hierarchy for the right to reproduce exclusively. I did fairly well in behavioral ecology; however, it is a social, non-hard science often criticized for its suppositions related to game theory.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    July 2, 2013 8:08 p.m.

    @genetics --

    "this has nothing to do with behaviors in other animals- that does not solve the fitness problem,"

    You are entirely neglecting the effects of group selection, kin selection, and behavioral ecology in general. Read up on those. Even Darwin was aware of their fundamental principles, way back when. ;-)

    MANY animals out in nature never reproduce. Even though they do not directly pass on their genes, many of these animals still contribute to their genetic fitness indirectly through helping their kin to survive and raise offspring. "Helper males" are one well-known example.

    At other times, their failure to reproduce directly is the result of an accumulation of polygenic variables which actually result in higher fitness when expressed to a less extreme degree in other animals.

    The fact that homosexual behaviors, including exclusive homosexuality, persist in such a wide range of animal species proves that they DO have selective value. Otherwise they would have disappeared, or at least be very rare. But no -- instead, we see that they are actually common. And that means they have value.

    Don't let your pet theory keep you from accepting the known facts.That is not a characteristic of an honest scientist.

  • genetics Canada, 00
    July 2, 2013 7:37 p.m.

    Yes- I did mean liability, thanks. You seem to be missing the entire point, this has nothing to do with behaviors in other animals- that does not solve the fitness problem, which is the issue here. Homosexual behavior, by its very definition, precludes genetic contributions into the next generation it's that simple and indisputable. If not, you must call out Darwin and any others as well- I'll leave that to you.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    July 2, 2013 2:41 p.m.

    @genetics --

    "If a gay gene is hitchhiking it is still a fitness reliability"

    I think you mean fitness **liability**. This is a bad assumption.

    A few examples from non-human species:

    Exclusive homosexuality is known in several bird species as well as mammals. Non-exclusive homosexuality is known from a vast number of species.

    In sheep, roughly 10% of all male domesticated sheep may refuse to engage in sex with female sheep.

    In giraffes, 90% of ALL sex acts occur between two males.

    In several species of penguins, homosexual couples are known to mate for life just as heterosexual couples do. They will raise chicks successfully if given the chance.

    Roughly 1/4 of all black swan pairings are male pairs. They inseminate females or simply steal nests with eggs, then drive the females off and raise the chicks themselves. Male flamingo pairs will also raise chicks.

    Homosexual behaviors are especially common amongst sea mammals and primates. Roughly 60% of all sexual activity in bonobos occurs between females.

    One researcher wrote in 2007: "No species has been found in which homosexual behaviour has **not** been shown to exist, with the exception of species that never have sex at all..."

  • genetics Canada, 00
    July 2, 2013 2:04 p.m.

    Thank you Lagomorph and Contrariuser:

    Sickle cell anemia is a good example because the genome has evolved to enhance fitness-genes have advanced into the next generation under adverse conditions. With scarcity, again greater fitness is required to survive. If a gay gene is hitchhiking it is still a fitness reliability and once expressed is quickly precluded from the gene pool; it definitely removes the positive contribution of other genes. Importantly, publications attempting to explain this behavior can be misleading. The LeVay (1991 Science?)study was based on 41 individuals, which is insufficient to make any claims outside of a potential trend. The 19 homosexual men, 16 straight and 6 women are unacceptably low numbers for any meaningful conclusions and likely would not be published under the stringent statistical standards invoked today. Finally, the Down's Syndrome example is a meaningful insight, might something similar be happening here with this behavior? I am optimistic that with good science and developments such as personalized medicine and the tools of next generation sequencing, break-through contributions stand to be made in this important area; however, the current social and political trends may well preclude any well intended, well designed efforts- a tragedy in the omics age.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    July 2, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    @genetics: Actually, there are several plausible mechanisms whereby a genetic trait that does not itself facilitate reproduction could be maintained in a population over time. Evolutionary theory does not negate the idea that homosexuality could have a genetic basis. Suppose that the "gay gene" (an admittedly imprecise an inaccurate term, because there are probably multiple genes at play-- but we'll use it for simplicity's sake) is linked to a gene that promotes fitness more than the gay gene decreases it. The gay gene would be carried along. It would be like the sickle cell anemia gene in African populations, which is linked to malaria resistance. Or consider that phenotypic expression of the gay gene is triggered by environmental resource scarcity. In that case, lower reproductive rates would enhance fitness. Or maybe homosexuality is neutral as far as fitness is concerned. Scientific theories describe the mean, but there may be more latitude in the tails of the bell curves.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    July 2, 2013 8:33 a.m.

    @genetics --

    " it is difficult to argue for a genetic basis...."

    With your username, you really ought to have a better understanding of genetics.

    Here's a few facts for your edification:

    1. There are quite a few genetic conditions which can occur in the offspring of genetically "normal" parents. One common example is trisomy 21 (Down's syndrome).

    2. Heritability of polygenic traits is often difficult to prove, and often produce widely varying phenotypes. As we know, human sexuality lies on a continuum rather than discrete endpoints -- favoring a polygenic origin.

    3. There is a proven genetic linkage with homosexual behaviors in at least one non-human species.

    4. In humans, several studies have found that homosexuality may tend to follow family lines. (Hamer, also Gavrilets and Camperio-Ciani)

    5. Physical differences have been found in the brains of homosexual men compared to heterosexual men, especially in the hypothalamus. (LeVay)

    6. The neural structure of the brains of homosexual men has been found to resemble women's brains rather than heterosexual men's brains.

    7. Homosexual behaviors are common in many non-human species, ranging from giraffes to penguins to chimpanzees to sheep, and many others.

  • genetics Canada, 00
    July 1, 2013 4:04 p.m.

    To: Church Member
    If we were to be intellectually honest about this issue, as opposed to the social context now in play, logic and facts are not in your favor. Since all of us come into the world in the "usual way" it is difficult to argue for a genetic basis, because our parents likely were not gay. Since homosexual behavior generally precludes the passage of genetic material into the next generation a strict heritable, genetic basis for this tendency is a difficult argument. Further, your DNA has been refined through a long line of descent, and according to selfish gene or Darwinian evolution, is trying to advance into the next generation to survive. Hence, Mother Nature has her own form of highly competitive genetic competition. Is Mother Nature a bigot? Yet a parallel view, is held by many religious groups who support the traditional family and define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Science, genetics and evolution strongly disagree with your type of logic.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    July 1, 2013 1:39 p.m.

    wrz: "Homosexuals can marry, provided they follow the age-old tradition of marrying the oppose sex."

    Radio talk show host Michael Medved has trotted this one out for years. You and he apparently discount the role of romantic love and attraction in spouse selection. Isn't that important? One might presume that you are comfortable with the practice of arranged marriage. Do you really want the government in the business of saying whom you can marry?

    A bit off topic, maybe, but I just want to use a few of my 200 words to thank QuercusQate, Kalindra, Shelama, RanchHand, atl134, and Contrarius for a consistent record of cogent, articulate, respectful comments and patient dealings with some intransigent types on this and many other threads. Good writing and sound arguments should be recognized. Also, although I rarely agree with any of his postings, a tip of the hat to procuradorfiscal for stylish flair and Menckenesque ripostes. No better curmudgeon dwells herein. Apologies to any worthy regulars I have overlooked.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    July 1, 2013 7:55 a.m.

    @BoMerit --

    "If a child, a product of a heterosexual couple, is abandoned during the divorse of a gay adopting couple, will the state require the two most recent "parents" to cover the child's protection costs, or will it go back to the biological parent and demand their contribution."

    Look up the law as it would apply to any other adopting infertile couple, and you'll have your answer.

    Fortunately, since gay legal unions are apparently breaking up at roughly HALF the rate of straight marriages, there will be very few of these to worry about.''

    "In the states with available data, dissolution rates for same-sex couples ...ranges from 0% to 1.8% annually, or ***1.1% on average***, whereas 2% of married different-sex couples divorce annually."
    -- from "Patterns of Relationship Recognition by Same-Sex Couples in the United States", published in 2011 by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law.

  • BoMerit Alpine, UT
    June 30, 2013 10:54 p.m.

    Contrarius,

    What will states do now? If a child, a product of a heterosexual couple, is abandoned during the divorse of a gay adopting couple, will the state require the two most recent "parents" to cover the child's protection costs, or will it go back to the biological parent and demand their contribution. Or should the decision go in the direction of a pro-rata split of obligations based upon which parent had the child under its roof some percentage of the time. Or should the state simply put the child up for sale to the couple that outbids all other couples in a society that has become so confused that there is not time to check on the motives for entering the highest bid.

    While some dicker about law & fairness, society could have remained ever vigilent to selflessly bringing children into the world under the care of both biological parents where its interests are protected by familial love from beginning to end of the child's life. This break down of law (there's no new law) was the natural result of society's preference for selfishness over selflessness, & Kennedy got to be god for a day.

  • lds4gaymarriage Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2013 10:19 p.m.

    wrz
    ..if a gay Mormon couple comes to the Mormon temple for marriage, the church can't deny them that rite...
    LDS4
    It'll never happen. The Church would quit having sealers perform legally recognized weddings. This would make the sealings completely religious. Therefore the state has no jurisdiction.

    wrz
    Homosexuals can marry, provided they follow the age-old tradition of marrying the oppose sex.
    LDS4
    That's what the Saudis say about Christians wanting religious freedom. They can, provided they follow the age-old tradition of worshiping in a mosque. Some freedom huh?

    wrz
    And that decision ... will pave the way for multiple-partner marriages.
    LDS4
    Good. There is no reason to ban it.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    June 29, 2013 10:42 a.m.

    @wrz --

    "any marriage law that restricts a person's right to decide who and how many they will marry (including first cousins, children, brothers/sisters, parent/child, etc., is also a violation of civil rights."

    Repeating a false claim many times will never make it magically become true.

    You have already been shown the reasons why these other activities are NOT bound to homosexuality rulings.

    "So was DOMA illegal in every state when passed"

    But it isn't now. ;-)

    "There's alotta domestic violence in Hetero marriages as well. You're saying they should be banned?"

    1. There's a *higher* risk in polygamous marriages than in monogamous ones, as Bauman pointed out.
    2. It's very difficult to take constitutional rights **away** from people, so it's pointless to even think about banning monogamous marriage. If a given activity is high-risk, the time to restrict that activity is BEFORE a legal "right" has been granted -- not after.

    "Ditto pro-gay forces."

    Fortunately, we have both facts and logic on our side. :-)

    "Check Google for polygamous countries. There's several."

    Sure. But NONE of them are the same countries in which gay marriage is legal. Which disproves your argument. :-)

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    June 29, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    @Contrarius:
    "So far as I know, married first cousins have never had any trouble collecting their Federal benefits."

    If restrictions on gay marriage violate civil rights, any marriage law that restricts a person's right to decide who and how many they will marry (including first cousins, children, brothers/sisters, parent/child, etc., is also a violation of civil rights.

    "As you are well aware, these have no valid comparison to DOMA..."

    If DOMA is a restriction of civil rights, so are the cited anti-polygamy, laws.

    "... both because polygamy is illegal in EVERY state..."

    So was DOMA illegal in every state when passed per the US Constitution's Supremacy Clause.

    "... and also because public safety concerns create a valid legal reason for polygamy's illegality."

    There's alotta domestic violence in Hetero marriages as well. You're saying they should be banned?

    "Well, of course anti-gay forces will throw out any argument they can. That doesn't make their arguments valid."

    Ditto pro-gay forces.

    "Quite a few countries already have gay marriages. NONE of them have polygamy."

    Check Google for polygamous countries. There's several... and \likely will be more as Islam moves across the world.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    June 29, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    @atl134:
    "Is there a DOMA that keeps them (first cousins) from receiving benefits or have they always had that even while arguments were made against same-sex couples?"

    So far as I know, married first cousins have never had any trouble collecting their Federal benefits.

    @zoar --

    "Answer: Yes, there's two... 1862 Morrill Anti-Bigamy Act, and the 1882 Edmonds Act."

    As you are well aware, these have no valid comparison to DOMA -- both because polygamy is illegal in EVERY state, and also because public safety concerns create a valid legal reason for polygamy's illegality.

    "The Supreme Court's decision finding the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional opens the door to legalized bigamy and polygamy, conservative Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert suggested Friday."

    Well, of course anti-gay forces will throw out any argument they can. That doesn't make their arguments valid.

    Quite a few countries already have gay marriages. NONE of them have polygamy.

    "You can't limit equal protection to marry whom you will (polygamy, brother/sister, father/daughter, etc.) to just a select group (homosexuals)."

    Of course you can. Canada and all the other countries that already have gay marriages have already **proven** that you can.

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    June 29, 2013 12:53 a.m.

    @atl134:
    "Is there a DOMA that keeps them (first cousins) from receiving benefits or have they always had that even while arguments were made against same-sex couples?"

    A correlate question: is there a DOMA (or similar law) that keeps polygamists from receiving marriage benefits...

    Answer: Yes, there's two... 1862 Morrill Anti-Bigamy Act, and the 1882 Edmonds Act.

    "The Supreme Court's decision finding the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional opens the door to legalized bigamy and polygamy, conservative Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert suggested Friday.

    The justices ... decided improperly that modern marriage between same-sex couples is a new development that requires equal protection under the Fifth Amendment. And that decision ... will pave the way for multiple-partner marriages.

    Once you move marriage beyond the scope of a man and a woman, you really don't end up with a good place to put a limit... such practices were a mile-marker on a nation's way to the 'dustbin of history.'"

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    June 29, 2013 12:13 a.m.

    @atl134:
    "New Jersey, New Mexico, and Colorado do not have same-sex marriage, so the issue isn't with SSM but rather the issue involves equivalent or uses of the 14th amendments' equal protections clause..."

    Homosexuals can marry, provided they follow the age-old tradition of marrying the oppose sex.

    And, of course, if same sex marriage becomes the law of all the states of the union under the federal equal protection clause, it simply opens the door for all kinds of marriages. You can't limit equal protection to marry whom you will (polygamy, brother/sister, father/daughter, etc.) to just a select group (homosexuals).

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    June 29, 2013 12:03 a.m.

    @Henry Drummond:
    "We all give something up in exchange for the rights and benefits to operate a business that is open to the general public."

    I suppose what you're saying is, if a gay couple comes to a Catholic Bishop to get married in his church he can't say no without being in trouble with the law. Keep in mind that the Catholic Church is not only a religion but is a business as well since it charges for such things as marriage rites.

    Further, if a gay Mormon couple comes to the Mormon temple for marriage, the church can't deny them that rite... even though the Church is not a business since there is no charge for the service.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    June 28, 2013 4:14 p.m.

    "Is that the kind of society we want to live in, where before we purchase something or engage the services of a company, we have to seek the moral or ideological approval of the owner - and shop around till we finally find one who deems us acceptable?"

    That's the best question I have read in a long time. Thank you for your comments.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 28, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    @Lightbearer;

    Bravo, bravo, bravo. I applaud you.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    June 28, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    What I don't understand is why the baker wouldn't bake them a cake in the first place, or why the photographer refused to photograph their wedding. Assuming that the baker and the photographer are Christians, whatever happened to "Love your neighbor [and your enemy]," "Treat others as you would like to be treated", "Judge not, that you not be judged," or even the good old non-Christian admonition, "Mind your own business"?

    If I am a baker, it is my business to bake cakes; if I am a photographer, it is my business to take pictures - not to pass moral judgment on my customers.

    The idea that if I bake a cake for a same-sex couple, or photograph their wedding, I am somehow endorsing their life-style is ridiculous. I'm no more endorsing their life-style than if they came into my gas station and bought a candy bar.

    Is that the kind of society we want to live in, where before we purchase something or engage the services of a company, we have to seek the moral or ideological approval of the owner - and shop around till we finally find one who deems us acceptable?

  • Jim Cobabe Provo, UT
    June 28, 2013 12:31 p.m.

    Though I have no personal anecdotes to offer, I tend to be rather disbeliving of the argument that such legal deliberations will prove to be more than even a passing interest to those who are inclined to indulge in homosexual behavior. After the celebration about the Supreme Court victory is through, I have the suspicion that those so inclined will contine doing what has always characterized homosexuals, regardless of any legal ramifications or claims of approaching any universal “equality”.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 28, 2013 12:27 p.m.

    ‘Jay Evensen: Gay marriage opponents stereotyped by ruling’

    ========

    Speaking of Stereotypes:
    Gay opponents in general label the entire LGBT community as sex starved, drunken pedophiles, who hook up for uncommitted one night stands and have no sense or any sort of normal life.

    Yes,
    Let's put the silly mythical stereotypes away, shall we?

  • Truthseeker2 SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA
    June 28, 2013 9:48 a.m.

    Re:JThompson

    The Prop 8 proponents have defended their positions in court up to the Supreme Court level.

    The problem is, they could provide no evidence of tangible harm to themselves from same-sex marriage.

    "One essential aspect of this requirement is that any person invoking the power of a federal court must demonstrate standing to do so. In other words, the litigant must seek a remedy for a personal and tangible harm."
    (Chief Justice John Roberts)

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    June 28, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    I would like to point out that churches are given wide latitude in the U.S. For example, many/most churches practice defacto discrimination against women (and sometimes against minorities) by denying them leadership positions and priesthood ordination.

    Therefore, there is little chance that churches will be forced/required to perform same-sex marriages. LGBTs will have to get in line behind women.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    June 28, 2013 9:17 a.m.

    @J Thompson --

    "Eternal law is exactly what the name says that it is, "eternal"."

    Actually, God's law is NOT "eternal".

    We KNOW that God's law changes over time.

    The biggest example: a "new covenant" was established in the New Testament (Hebrews 8:6-13 and several others), which supplanted God's laws from the Old Testament.

    "...the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, since the new covenant is established on better promises." (Hebrews 8:6)

    "By calling this covenant 'new,' he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear."(Hebrews 8:13)

    "For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant." (Hebrews 9:15)

    Furthermore, Mormons believe in continuous revelation.

    Whether you interpret it as the actual law changing -- or only as our **understanding** of that law changing -- still, what we SEE as the law definitely does change.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    June 28, 2013 3:44 a.m.

    @Tolstoy,

    It's interesting taht you talk about "selective morality". Eternal law is exactly what the name says that it is, "eternal". It isn't "selective" and it doesn't change just because a judge in California decided that the vote of the people of California didn't count. It doesn't change just because five judges in Washington decided that they had the right to tell California how to write its constitution.

    Equality tells us that all must be heard, so where was equality in this case? When only one side is heard, is that equal? In an argument about equality, you're certainly silent about that bit of inequality. If you claim that the 14th Amendment is the basis for the court's ruling, then you also must demand that the 14th Amendment requires that all sides be represented.

    One judge in California disregarded the Constitution and the Supreme Court redefined "equality" to mean the opposite. That all seems to be fair to you. Now, what about that "selective morality"?

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    June 27, 2013 4:37 p.m.

    SSM will be allowed in LDS Temples when Divorced Catholics are allowed to be remarried in a Catholic Church. For the legal Beagles out there. The Catholic practice of denying remarriage sacrament violates discrimation based on Marital Status in the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Well thats been on the books for about 50 years AND I don't see the Catholic Church in America caving in on this issue anytime soon. I wouldn't worry too much about Gay/Lesbian couples being sealed in the Salt Lake Temple in the immediate future.

  • George New York, NY
    June 27, 2013 3:29 p.m.

    @john pack lambert

    Churches should never be forced to perform ceremonies that go against their tenants I agree. When it comes to civic society you do not have a "freedom" to discriminate against other law abiding citizens simply based on their real or perceived differences. when you incorporate as a business you agree to abide by civil laws. The laws are not some random liberal ploy o take away your rights they exist because of lessons learned from a painful past when we made the exact same type of exceptions that you ask for.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    June 27, 2013 1:55 p.m.

    The failure of the supports of same-gender marriage to recognize the freedom concerns of their opponants is very disturbing.

    People who object to homosexual actions as morally wrong should have the religious freedom right not to in any way participate in ceremonies that proactively affirm them.

    This is not an issue of providing services, it is an issue of forcing proactive affirmation. People have a right to view homosexual behavior as morally wrong, and until the supporters of same-gender marriage recognize this, they will be in violation of the 1st admendment's freedom of religion guarantees, and in many cases violating free speech guarantees.

    The better analogy is if someone went to a baker and wanted them to make a cake that said "Only man/woman marriage is approved of God". Could the baker refuse? Yes. Cake makers should be able to refuse on religious grounds. The state should not force participation in ceremonies.

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    June 27, 2013 1:47 p.m.

    @j thomas

    "Like many others who have posted"

    you of course mean you posting as Mike Richards right?

    I am sure your comment would be much more impact on someone hat shares your beliefs but since I do not and they are based on beliefs not facts they make for some interesting insights into your beliefs but nothing more.

    The thing that I have trouble understanding is your continual selective morality when you claim to have such stanch and unbending beliefs.That is what I would really like to try to understand the motivations and thinking of. How do you reconcile the two?

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    June 27, 2013 1:44 p.m.

    The reason to define marriage as a man/woman institution comes out of a belief that marriage is about raising children and meant to create a situation that links it to child rearing. This is done through a form than can create children. The form is not violated by individual couples that chose not to or cannot have children, but it is violated by couples who in form can never create their own children.

    The reasons to define marriage this way are not about limiting behavior by the unmarried, but for the purpose of showing a certain view of what marriage itself is.

    Thus the whole rhetoric of one group forcing another misses the point. Marriage law is inherently the state choosing what marriage is and what it wants to be. Man/woman marriage is a marriage centered on child rearing. There are other ways to conceive marriage, and people have the right to advocate for a change in public policy.

    However it is a public policy, and as a public policy issue, it affects all people. All people have a vested interest in having marriage be in a form that best fits their definition of what it should be.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    June 27, 2013 1:24 p.m.

    @Tolstoy,

    "Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."

    It's pretty obvious that the Creator doesn't think much of the self-important who think that their laws have anything to do with Him.

    Little children do things when even though they are wrong they think that they are right; but, little children are also teachable. They quickly learn right from wrong. Our creator expects us to become teachable and to leave behind us the pride that would make us think that we can reorder eternal truths.

    Like many others who have posted, I think that the Court showed us that they are "ever learnng but never coming to the truth".

    That might not be so bad, but they're leading a bunch of gullible people around with them. Some of those people think that because five people said something that eternal laws can be nullified. That's pretty childish, don't you think?

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    June 27, 2013 12:59 p.m.

    Somebody has to stand up for what is right! I'm happy that marriage is one of those things. It is actually quite a self-esteem boost to find myself telling the Supreme Court how intellectually empty they have become! Whatever law they think they understand, it is quite obvious that that they have become pawns to the me generation. So be it! Now America has a choice, one that will split America again. Awesome! Bland acceptance of evil is unfitting for
    America, something we have been doing for decades. The future is bright and the battles are going to be inspirational!

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 27, 2013 12:28 p.m.

    @Truthseeker;

    Thanks for the clarification.

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    June 27, 2013 12:06 p.m.

    @mike Richards

    You are right laws should not be based on child like beliefs that is why while you have every right to base your behaviors on your child like beliefs in a "creator" laws that govern society should be based on reason grounded in sceince and observable facts.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 27, 2013 11:48 a.m.

    re:RanchHand

    I'm sorry if it seemed like I was "dismissing" a contract between the Methodist organization and the state of New Jersey. My intent was to present the facts to show that the Methodist organization had wrongly singled out gays for discrimination.

    I agree with what you said.

    And I merely provided the ridiculous views held by Ron Paul to underscore your point.

    There are those (like Ron Paul) who think U.S. ideals/principals should/do include the "freedom" to discriminate against others, but that we do not have the "freedom" to decide that discrimination is wrong and enact laws to prohibit discrimination.

  • ClarkHippo Tooele, UT
    June 27, 2013 11:26 a.m.

    Mr. Evensen's article is good in demonstrating that ignorance and stereotyping are actions hardly exclusive to the political right wing. Public accommodation laws however do include the rights of those in the LGBT community.

    On the other hand, sometimes gays do twist arms in ways that go beyond equal rights.

    There was the case of four San Diego firefighters who, even though they are not gay, were threatened with the loss of their jobs if they refused to march in a gay pride parade. During and after the parade they were sexually and verbally harassed.

    The fire fighters filed suit against the city and won, and while a few realize the city's original actions were a mistake, that people should not be forced to march in a gay pride parade, others were not as sympathetic.

    I know someone who works for American Express and during the city's Pride Week, ALL employees were told they had to wear the rainbow flag alongside their security badges. If they refused, they could be terminated. He told me while it upset many of his co-workers, no one dared refuse.

    Where's the equality forcing individuals like this?

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 27, 2013 11:01 a.m.

    @Truthseeker;

    The "contract" you so easily dismiss was a contract that the county would use TAX money to maintain the structure as long as the public had use of it for their functions. ALL the public, not just those approved by the church in question. If they agreed (which they did) to allow the public to use their property in abeyance of their taxes they are then required to adhere to the contract and let the public use the pavilion - including LGBT public.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 27, 2013 10:43 a.m.

    Random thought: some states allow first cousins to marry, other states don't. Is there a DOMA that keeps them from receiving benefits or have they always had that even while arguments were made against same-sex couples?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 27, 2013 10:12 a.m.

    Re: "We aren't interested in a debate, we're interested in human rights."

    Liberals are only interested in debate when they're not in power. When -- as now -- they run things, debate only gets in the way of implementing their deranged policies. As the President indicated yesterday, while implementing his unconstitutional war on American energy, they "have no time" for discussion or debate.

    Well, having established the pattern, we should expect liberals to just go quietly into the night -- as they current demand we do -- once political sanity is restored and Constitutional government is re-established, right?

  • Mukkake Salt Lake City, UT
    June 27, 2013 9:56 a.m.

    We aren't interested in a debate, we're interested in human rights.

    Anti-gay-marriage arguments aren't that complex, and can be easily reduced to simple stereotypes.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    June 27, 2013 9:52 a.m.

    There are so many who argue that they are the creators, not the created. They argue that they set the laws that govern mortality and morality, not Him who gave them life. They live and breathe, walk and talk, yet they mock Him who made that possible. They demand that those who defend the Creator be forced to accept them and their Court-backed-exemption from eternal law.

    Little children often want to play in the sun without getting a sunburn.

    Little children often want to stay up all night without being tired and miserable the next day.

    Little children often want to make their own rules where adults are excluded because adults "take away their fun".

    The Court acted like a foolish child. It blamed the adults in our society for the self-caused misery of those who reject the eternal laws of happiness. It called the adults names. Only one judge defended the adults. The rest pretended that they were replaying "The Lord of the Flies".

    No society can survice when foolish children make the laws.

  • Diligent Dave Logan, UT
    June 27, 2013 9:32 a.m.

    "Democracy is messy; it's not efficient and it isn't always fair. But it works best when all sides can be aired under the presumption of best intentions."

    The Supreme Court's majority decisions in these cases regarding homosexuality are prima facie evidence that such "...presumption of best intentions" are stupidly wrong. In fact, their majority decisions in most of these cases are but yet another "shout down" of those advocating what in another era would have been called "common sense".

    Like the mob outside Lot's home who continued to press to enter his house to "have their way" with Lot's guests, even after being blinded by God, so today's pro-Sodom crowd are likewise blind both to their blindness and to how untoward their groping press is.

    After logically pointing the error of those LDS members who sided with those against Prop 8, against the leadership of their own church in Sunday School a couple of weeks ago, an otherwise friend of mine side-swipingly implied my viewpoint was "hateful". Wow! The logic of so-called liberals I have long found to be out of context with the totality of reality.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    June 27, 2013 8:50 a.m.

    It's pure hypocrisy of Mr. Evensen to claim that a statement like" Its "principle purpose is to impose inequality, not for other reasons like governmental efficiency." stigmatizes the laws supporters as wild eyed radicals, while at the same time defining opponents of gay marriage as supporters of traditional marriage, insinuating that those who would allow gay marriage don't support marriage between a man and a woman. If you want to be accurate Mr. Evensen call both sides what they are, opponents to gay marriage, and supporters of gay marriage. Pretty much everyone in the debate are supporters of marriage between a man and a woman.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 27, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    re:Ranch Hand

    "The Civil Rights Act of 1964 gave the federal government unprecedented power over the hiring, employee relations, and customer service practices of every business in the country. The result was a massive violation of the rights of private property and contract, which are the bedrocks of free society. The federal government has no legitimate authority to infringe on the rights of private property owners to use their property as they please and to form (or not form) contracts with terms mutually agreeable to all parties. The rights of all private property owners, even those whose actions decent people find abhorrent, must be respected if we are to maintain a free society."

    Ron Paul 2004

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 27, 2013 8:39 a.m.

    More facts:

    The adjunct professor at U of Illinois was initially fired (but reinstated) for what he wrote in an e-mail, not what he taught "in" class. (Previously at U of Illinois, instructors teaching Catholic studies courses were paid by St. John's Catholic Newman Center. Subsequent to this incident, U of Illinois began paying the instructor's salary).

    In part, the e-mail (which is too graphic to pass DN standards)stated:

    "Natural Moral Theory says that if we are to have healthy sexual lives, we must return to a connection between procreation and sex. Why? Because that is what is REAL. It is based on human sexual anatomy and physiology. Human sexuality is inherently unitive and procreative. If we encourage sexual relations that violate this basic meaning, we will end up denying something essential about our humanity, about our feminine and masculine nature.

    As a final note, a perceptive reader will have noticed that none of what I have said here or in class depends upon religion. Catholics don't arrive at their moral conclusions based on their religion. They do so based on a thorough understanding of natural reality."

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    June 27, 2013 8:18 a.m.

    Speaking of "honest" discussions --

    "government's interest in marriage as a vehicle for ensuring children have claim to their biological parents..."

    This much-touted argument is absolutely irrelevant to the actual issue of gay marriage.

    Gay couples are already raising children, with or without marriage. Gay marriage won't change that.

    Straight couples are already raising children, with or without marriage. Gay marriage won't change that, either.

    Gay couples are NOT somehow stealing children from happy, stable, straight homes. They are:

    1. Adopting children -- Thousands of children in the US spend years in the foster system, simply because there aren't enough homes available for them. Adoption by gay couples HELPS these children.

    2. Using surrogacy or in vitro fertilization -- These children wouldn't even EXIST without the gay couple, so it's meaningless to claim that a straight home would have been better for them.

    3. raising children from previous relationships -- The parents of these children were already separated. In these cases, there is no happy straight home to go back to.

    Gay marriage doesn't remove children from happy straight homes in ANY of these cases.

    Yes, let's try for some HONEST debate. Less rhetoric and red herrings, please.

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    June 27, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    How can one dispute that the principal purpose of DOMA was to impose inequality?? A couple is legally married in Georgia, but are denied federal benefits because they are of different races. Alternatively, a couple is legally married in Massachusetts, but are denied federal benefits because they are of the same sex. If either event happened, it would be a bald imposition of inequality - treating legal marriages as unequal in the eyes of the federal government.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 27, 2013 8:07 a.m.

    If the issue is stereotyping, Jay Evensen surely knows that a fair amount of that is done on both sides of the issue. It doesn't help anything.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 27, 2013 7:37 a.m.

    I'm sorely disappointed in you Jay. A half-truth is also a half-lie; intended to decieve.

    "In New Jersey, a judge ruled against a Methodist church that declined to allow a gay marriage on its property."

    Why didn't you include the portion of that case where the property was being subsidized by tax-payer money?

    ------------

    This is the same argument used by business owners in the Jim Crow era. Businesses shouldn't be allowed to use their "religious" beliefs as a shield for their bigotry and to discriminate against citizens in this country. A baker who provides wedding cakes should provide the cake for all weddings. Same with a florist or photographer.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 27, 2013 7:35 a.m.

    Mr. Evensen
    A few facts:
    New Jersey has never legalized same-sex marriage.

    A Methodist organization in New Jersey tried to take advantage of a state property tax exemption by opening up its ocean boardwalk pavilion to the public for a wide variety of uses--including allowing people of other denominations to reserve and use the pavilion for marriage ceremonies. A gay couple tried to reserve the pavilion for a commitment ceremony but were denied. The New Jersey real estate commission found that the Methodist organization could not discriminate for a building open for public use and claim a property tax exemption. The organization was then assessed an additional $200 in property tax for the pavilion.

    re:Red State Pride
    This week, the IRS released documents showing that progressive and liberal groups may have been singled out as well. On Monday, Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee released 15 BOLO lists, which changed over time and were dated between August 2010 and April 2013. The lists included the terms “Progressive,” ”Medical Marijuana,” ”Occupied Territory Advocacy,” ”Healthcare legislation,” ”Newspaper Entities” and “Paying National Debt.”

  • Church member North Salt Lake, UT
    June 26, 2013 11:55 p.m.

    To: red state pride

    I feel the same way about the "American right". They don't want a debate because their arguments are silly when they are forced to be stated out loud. Quoting the bible or saying "because my God says so" is not a very good logical argument.

    People around the world are starting to wake up and realize that religious dogma and myths are not the best way find "truth". Using reason, logic, and facts are a much better way.

  • Christian 24-7 Murray, UT
    June 26, 2013 11:00 p.m.

    Brilliant article!

    Thank you for articulating the problems with this issue, and the insults from the liberal left, so well.

    And yes, those of us who live by our principles are worried by our rights are being taken away.

  • red state pride Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 26, 2013 10:11 p.m.

    Mr Evenson was right in his column but he didn't come right out and get to the heart of the matter. The fact is that the American left has no interest in debate as evidenced by Justice Kennedy's majority opinion. The American left seeks to shut down debate because their arguments cannot win when forced to be stated logically. Exhibit A: IRS targeting of Tea Party organizations. I believe that the citizens of a state should be allowed to decide whether or not the state should sanction/certify gay marriage. In fact, at this point (now that we're standing at the end of Western civilization) I don't think states should even have a role in marriage (certification or otherwise)
    I hate to find a Communist behind every tree but on every issue the American left is obsessed with from Gay marriage (destroy Religion) to "climate change" ( centralized power over individuals) it's fairly obvious that there is an ulterior motive.

  • Arizona1 Tucson, AZ
    June 26, 2013 9:52 p.m.

    It's sad how we bandy around the word "rights". We cheapen its meaning when we apply it to anything and everything that we want to become the law of the land.

    As for the cases I have heard of concerning a refusal to serve those who identify themselves as gays, they have been cases where a photographer or baker, or what have you have refused to participate in the "celebration" of gay practices, not against gays themselves. Those who identify themselves should by all means be protected against discrimination. They should have every right to housing, employment, etc., but we don't have to make up rights that force people to "celebrate" what flies in the face of their convictions.

  • Mainly Me Werribee, 00
    June 26, 2013 9:48 p.m.

    "Democracy is messy; it's not efficient and it isn't always fair."

    Paraphrased from a book by David Weber:

    A republic is freedom.
    A democracy is oppression.
    A peoples republic is a dictatorship.
    A peoples democratic republic is an oppressive dictatorship.

    With SCOTUS in lock step with the so-called homosexual rights movement, we are headed for a peoples republic.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 26, 2013 8:11 p.m.

    New Jersey, New Mexico, and Colorado do not have same-sex marriage, so the issue isn't with SSM but rather the issue involves equivalent or uses of the 14th amendments' equal protections clause and provisions similar to the civil rights act that prohibited discrimination based on race.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    June 26, 2013 7:17 p.m.

    In the examples you provide, if we substituted a Mormon for someone who is Gay, would the right to discriminate in the Public Sphere still be as justified?

    We all give something up in exchange for the rights and benefits to operate a business that is open to the general public. This includes safety laws, labor regulations, and nondiscrimination laws. Do we really want to go back to a time when certain classes of people were turned away from hotels, restaurants, housing, drinking fountains, etc. because of parochial objections whether based in religion or custom?

    Consider your own past and consider it carefully. It won't be just Gays who are turned away if we take the course suggested by this column.

  • Shelama SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    June 26, 2013 6:39 p.m.

    Here is not a stereotype but an obvious and overwhelmingly true observation:...

    The only way that virtually anybody ever enters into Christianity in the first place is either by childhood indoctrination or else in rather profound ignorance of the Bible itself.

    While there may be stereotyping going on against opponents, well... welcome to the game.

    Gays have been negatively stereotyped for centuries primarily by people like those above and often people who would do them harm.

    Epstein will fly very well within the religious community, including by people who don't mind stereotyping but who don't seem to like turnabout.