Comments about ‘Jay Evensen: Gay marriage opponents stereotyped by ruling’

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Published: Wednesday, June 26 2013 5:55 p.m. MDT

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RanchHand
Huntsville, UT

@Lightbearer;

Bravo, bravo, bravo. I applaud you.

Really???
Kearns, UT

"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.

wrz
Pheonix, AZ

@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.

wrz
Pheonix, AZ

@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

@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.'"

Contrarius
mid-state, TN

@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

@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

@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. :-)

lds4gaymarriage
Salt Lake City, UT

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.

BoMerit
Alpine, UT

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.

Contrarius
mid-state, TN

@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.

Lagomorph
Salt Lake City, UT

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.

genetics
Canada, 00

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.

Contrariuser
mid-state, TN

@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.

Lagomorph
Salt Lake City, UT

@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.

genetics
Canada, 00

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.

Contrariuser
mid-state, TN

@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

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

@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

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.

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