Conservative icons disagree on gay marriage in Utah speeches

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • ThornBirds St.George, Utah
    May 17, 2013 11:18 a.m.

    Those who comment on the infinite power of Barack Obama could work in a different way. Go out of your box on this one.
    Might you possibly assist the country in channeling Mr. Obama's immense power in other directions?
    For instance.....
    Rain for draught stricken parts of American and our planet.
    Enough food for all.
    Do able climate change.
    Tolerance and Kindness toward our fellow men, women and all of God's creatures.
    Lovely, happiness filled elections.
    "Regular people" elected to all political offices.
    Peace throughout the Universe.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    April 15, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    the issue I see ...and it is a BIG one ... is the heavy hand of the federal gov forcing the LDS church to permit gay temple marriage even though this violates the foundation of Church doctrine and standards. I could easily see the new socialist US government forcing gay temple marriage under the false front of "anti-descrimination" or some other absurd charge. When ANY governement becomes so powerful - so intimidating - so overreaching that the people lose their rights then anything goes....I mean anything! We are close to that point in the US now. Some people on the left say "not to worry" you will always have religious liberty... HA!! Really? The goal of the left is a Fully Communist societty and any serious study of core Communism reveals a culture of forced athesim and zero individual rights. What does Obama always say... "this change isn't going to happen overnight"... Only a fool would think his or her rights aren't in jepardy with Barack and his bunch of radicals in charge.

  • zoar63 Mesa, AZ
    April 14, 2013 2:22 p.m.


    "If being gay becomes a civil right, what defense will the Church have in refusing gay members temple sealings? Won't that be discrimination, subjecting the Church to Federal prosecution? It will be the same fight the Church had with the federal government over Polygamy."

    Temple sealings are a matter of LDS theology regarding the union of a man and a woman for eternity. If the government did as you said, that would be a gross violation of the first amendment which provides for the free exercise of religion.

  • jasonlivy Orem, UT
    April 14, 2013 1:00 p.m.

    The fact is that the definition of marriage must have these two elements...mother and father. Without these it cannot be called marriage. That has nothing to do with religion or anything else. This fact, this truth, has been the definition and will always be the definition.

    If we choose to change the definition then it won't be called 'marriage', at least the pure definition. You can be as high and mighty as you want in your rebutles, but marriage by definition must contain a father and a mother, period.

    Without flour you cannot have bread, whether you call it 'bread' or not.

  • ender2155 Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 14, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    The problem is, no one against gay marriage can present a legitimate legal reason why such unions should not be recognized and given the same privileges and responsibilities as their straight counterparts. You can try, but it's beyond easy to poke holes in any such arguments. The issue here is religious in nature, and the government is not allowed to rule according to religion, expressly because of the first amendment. People can be against gay marriage all they want, but they do not have the right to deny others what they har simply because the disagree on religious grounds.

  • Zona Zone Mesa, AZ
    April 14, 2013 12:09 p.m.

    Mike Leavitt and some Princeton professor no one has ever heard of are "Conservative Icons"?

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 14, 2013 10:39 a.m.

    @BYU Papa --

    "Why do gays need to call their union marriage?"

    Because separate is not equal. If you call it something different, then it *is* something different. Our country proved that back in the days of racial segregation.

    "They cannot have children by their own choice so they are not a family."

    Actually, more than 100,000 gay couples in this country are **already** raising children, with or without marriage. They are just as much "families" as any infertile couples who choose to adopt, use surrogacy or artificial insemination, or have children from previous marriages.

    "They should not expect people to accept their life style as normal because it is abnrmal."

    Nobody needs for you to accept them as normal. You have the right to keep whatever personal opinion you may choose. We only expect you to accept the fact that, in this country, ALL citizens have the right to equal protection under the US Constitution. And that means freedom from discrimination.

    If you think that gay marriage is a sin, then don't have one. It's none of your business if someone else chooses to have one. It's really just as simple as that.

  • BYU Papa Cedar Hills, ut
    April 14, 2013 8:59 a.m.

    Why do gays need to call their union marriage? They can make a contract to be true to each other, share finances, and death benefits, and follow the own idea of fidelity. They cannot have children by their own choice so they are not a family. Otherwise they already have rights necessary to live together as friends. They should not expect people to accept their life style as normal because it is abnrmal. We can still be their friends if they are willing to accept our view.

  • jasonlivy Orem, UT
    April 13, 2013 11:10 p.m.


    It seems that all those who support not only gay marriage, but the gay lifestyle, use the same arguments over and over. No, I do not have the right to judge to condemnation. I do have the right to judge what I believe is best for me and my family. Whether I judge or not judge has nothing to do with there being serious consequences to our choices. Changing the definition of a bedrock, foundational principle will bring consequences whether you believe so or not. And what are those consequences? I believe the kind of thinking that changes the definition of traditional marriage will lead eventually to the crumbling of the family. Is this to say gay couples can't rear children? Of course not. What it does say is that as we go down this path of corrupting essential ingredients of a moral society, the society will eventually crumble. This is only the beginning...

    I believe there is an absolute right and an absolute wrong, not 'moral relativism'. Right, or in other words truth, is the opposite of chaos. Chaos is what happens when we ignore God.

  • ObjectivelyBiased Pleasant Grove, UT
    April 13, 2013 10:47 p.m.

    The only way to have true religious freedom is to get the government out of marriage. Marriage is a religious sacrament and should not be defined by the government. If we followed that rule, advocates for traditional marriage (only) would not need to worry about gay marriage being defined as marriage in public kindergarten classes, and advocates for gay marriage could get married as their consciences dictated in the churches and ceremonies of their choice. A century ago, the state of Utah would have also had a much easier time if the federal government had not been in the business of defining marriage. Religion and state should not be separate, but church ans state should be separate. Church and state are not separate if the government has the power to define religious rites and ceremonies like marriage.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    April 13, 2013 10:34 p.m.

    To those who fear SSM threatens their freedom of religion:

    My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord. I am just an average gay man. One who was a regular devoted and conflicted LDS until he realized that God loves him in the same way he loves all his children.

    Because the LDS church does not accept my relationship of and our daughter as a family, I just don't go to the Mormon church anymore.

    There is no resentment on my part against the LDS beliefs about homosexuality. I said, I'm just an average gay man, most gay men and women I know feel the same way.

    I find amusing that many (not all) of those who oppose SSM attempt to portrait themselves as victims; Eventhough, they are the ones inflicting the aggression.

    Let's be logical here. Do you think that any homosexual couple would want to have their marriage blessed by a church/minister who despises them?

    I can assure you, that I and many other LGBT will defend your right to believe we are going to a very hot place.

    In the meantime, however, we will fight your attempts to legalize your bigotry and descrimination.

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    April 13, 2013 9:30 p.m.

    Or ... it could just be that the GOP lost the White House and they're looking to add to their voting base.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 13, 2013 9:14 p.m.

    @BYUAlum --

    "Any other "arrangement" does not a family make."

    You have just single-handedly insulted, marginalized, and demeaned millions of people who have been successfully raised by step-parents, grandparents, adoptive parents, aunts and uncles, elder siblings, or others of the myriad loving family arrangements that have existed over the centuries in this and many other countries.

    The truth is that there are many many different family structures around the world, and there always have been.

    "a husband and worth fighting for!"

    And **nobody** is trying to take that arrangement away from anybody.

    I just don't understand why some religious people feel so threatened by the idea of gay marriage. Nobody is trying to make straight people stop getting married. Nobody is trying to force straight people to take part in gay marriages. Go ahead and have as many straight marriages as you like, gay people DON'T CARE.

    Fun fact: in countries where gay marriages or gay registered partnerships have been legal for years, there has either been no effect on marriage rates or the marriage rate has actually INCREASED.

    Gay marriage is NOT any kind of a threat to straight people.

  • Interloper Portland, OR
    April 13, 2013 8:51 p.m.

    The issue, 'religious liberty' versus gay marriage, is fake. The changes that will occur if gay marriage becomes legal are secular. No religion will be forced to marry same sex couples against its will. Churches can continue to exclude gays if they want to. So, one has to wonder what is really going on. I suspect this phony conflict has to do with money. Divisive issues allow institutions, including political parties and religious dominations, to raise money by exploiting the emotion attached to the issues. We saw that with the anti-gay marriage referendums and constitutional amendments that increased donations to and turn-out for the Republican Party in 2010.

    But, the window in time that allowed gay marriage to be used as a wedge issue has passed. A clear majority of Americans now support it. Prof. George's plan to continue to promote gays as threats to our entire society will surely fail.

  • BYUalum South Jordan, UT
    April 13, 2013 7:50 p.m.

    I have been working on my family history. It goes back to the 1500's. Nowhere in any lines do I see anything except a father and a mother for generations of my ancestors. Go to FamilySearch and look at your line. Any other "arrangement" does not a family make. You can argue it back and forth. It takes a man and a woman to have a child. It's God's plan. Anything else is contrary to His plan. Yes, the family unit...a husband and worth fighting for!

  • Jeff Temple City, CA
    April 13, 2013 7:08 p.m.

    The difference between Leavitt and George is more nuanced than the headline made me believe.

    As someone who actively campaigned for and donated to Prop 8 in California, I agree with George that hetero-gender marriage is the only appropriate form of marriage in any society. I think history, biology, and religion all support that assertion.

    I foresee, as many Californians do, that, if the Supreme Court upholds Prop 8, there will be battle after battle on the same issue for years to come, and I will continue to defend hetero-gender marriage.

    But I pay close attention to the public schools in California, and I can see the way the public-school winds are blowing. It is possible that same-gender marriage may someday become legal here (or the Supreme Court could exercise one of its occasional gross injustices and overturn Prop 8 and speed the process). If I understand Leavitt, one thing he seems to be saying is that the battle will change into a fight to defend religious liberty balanced against the temptation to descend into violence and hatred.

    I add that if history is any indicator, religious liberty will be in grave danger.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 13, 2013 6:54 p.m.

    @JSB --

    "experimenting heterosexual marriage or natural human pair-bonding, will have disastrous consequences and contribute to a huge human population crash."

    Only about 3-5% of the human population is LGBT. Allowing them to marry will have virtually NO effect on global population growth. Legalizing gay marriage will not suddenly "turn" straight people gay.

    "Already many countries are reproducing at below sustainable levels."

    The fact is that world population has grown **continually** since 1350. World population is still growing at greater than 1% every year. Our population is ALREADY threatening the global ecosystem, and the problems will only get worse in the future. Slowing down that growth rate should be the LEAST of our worries.

    @RAB --

    "IF however, the government legalizes and endorses gay marriage, ...It will be taking sides on both issues.....Sorry, but that would NOT be containing religious liberty within the context of religion. "

    Legalizing gay marriage doesn't threaten anyone's religious freedom any more than legalizing the sale of alcohol does. If you believe drinking alcohol is a sin, then don't do it. If you believe that gay marriage is a sin, then don't have one. It's really very simple.

  • loveless center valley, pa
    April 13, 2013 6:43 p.m.

    If being gay becomes a civil right, what defense will the Church have in refusing gay members temple sealings? Won't that be discrimination, subjecting the Church to Federal prosecution? It will be the same fight the Church had with the federal government over Polygamy.

  • Marco Luxe Los Angeles, CA
    April 13, 2013 6:41 p.m.

    George said "It is difficult to think of any item on the domestic agenda that is more critical today than...the effort to renew and rebuild the marriage culture.”

    Why hasn't he considered that marriage equality will promote the rebuilding of "the marriage culture"? There will be more marriages, fewer excuses to avoid marriage, and a stronger social message that will tend to make marriage the norm again.

    George seems blinded by ideology.

  • JSB Sugar City, ID
    April 13, 2013 5:44 p.m.

    It's not a religious issue; it is a biological, human evolutionary issue. Humans are a heterosexual, pair-bonding species. The purpose for sex is to reproduce the species. The purpose for pair bonding is to provide the long-term nurturing and training that human children need. The urge to form a heterosexual pair bond is strong--so strong that even people with same sex attraction are able to form strong exclusive heterosexual pair bonds and be excellent parents. Though there are behavioral aberrations,this is is how we evolved and experimenting heterosexual marriage or natural human pair-bonding, will have disastrous consequences and contribute to a huge human population crash. Already many countries are reproducing at below sustainable levels. These also are the same countries that advocate gay marriage. If gay marriage is inevitable, people with strong heterosexual pair bonds and their children will be the most likely to survive the population crash but the crash won't be a pleasant experience for anyone.

  • wYo8 Rock Springs, WY
    April 13, 2013 5:33 p.m.

    How does is this Professor have a job in this PC world.

  • wYo8 Rock Springs, WY
    April 13, 2013 5:13 p.m.

    Anti-Bush-obama we are fighting to keep the 2nd ammendment if it goes down. what makes you or anyone else think that the other ammendments that they the liberals, socialists, etc want to destroy are safe. Start down hill and its hard to stop.

  • RAB Bountiful, UT
    April 13, 2013 5:08 p.m.

    Hutterite is right. 'Religious liberty' needs to be contained in the context of religion, not the larger society. But that is exactly WHY the government CANNOT support gay marriage.

    As it stands currently, the government has a NEUTRAL stance on the religious definition of marriage and on the morality of intimate gay behavior. The government currently does not imprison, fine, or otherwise punish gays for marrying. Nor does the government punish gays for engaging in intimate behavior.

    IF however, the government legalizes and endorses gay marriage, it no longer will be advocating a neutral stance. It will be taking sides on both issues. It will be supporting ONLY the definition of marriage as espoused by gay marriage advocates. By extension, the government likewise will be supporting ONLY the moral views of those who believe intimate gay behavior is not a bad thing.

    Sorry, but that would NOT be containing religious liberty within the context of religion. That would be government opposing, neglecting, shunning, and ignoring one group's religious views in favor of endorsing, supporting, celebrating, and rewarding another group's religious views.

  • wYo8 Rock Springs, WY
    April 13, 2013 5:04 p.m.

    In the last days good will be called evil and evil will be called good. Line up on line, here alittle there a little. They know what they are doing to destroy this country. Ezra Taft Benson had a soviet union official say that America would be destroyed from within. He asked why? He was told because americans are so gulible. or is it just stupidity. We just seem to keep voting this philosphy in every couple of years.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 4:35 p.m.

    "I believe that we as a people need to be free to make our own choices and accept the consequences to those choices."

    Therefore, you support banning people from making a particular choice just because you don't like it.

    "Why does the public discourse not discuss the impact of SSM on our civilization? The omens are clear from the fall of the Roman (and earlier) Empires."

    The fall of Rome had absolutely nothing to do with sexuality. Pick up a history textbook...

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    April 13, 2013 4:03 p.m.

    George is an academic who doesn't have to worry about practicality.

    The simplest thing to do is to have the Church *not* perform weddings, only sealings.

  • zoar63 Mesa, AZ
    April 13, 2013 3:43 p.m.


    "If LDS/Evangelicals won't provide this legally recognized act for gays, government could rightly prevent any LDS/Evangelical clergy from performing a LEGALLY recognized marriage. LDS couples would have to be married at City Hall and then, if they choose, have a NON-legally recognized temple sealing. This is done"

    It would not make any difference if a government official performed the legal marriage all that really matters is that God accepts the NON-legally recognized temple sealing which according to LDS beliefs makes a couple man and wife for eternity where the government cannot alter, change, or penalize in any shape, form or manner.

  • Gracie Boise, ID
    April 13, 2013 3:25 p.m.

    Maudine: "How does allowing same-sex marriage threaten religious freedom? How does allowing same-sex marriage differ from allowing other things religious groups oppose?"

    There are many good responses to this written here and elsewhere ad nauseum. If you don't accept all the many reasons given before, you won't accept a new one either. There are only so many ways to state well not only the obvious but the obscure. There's no point to restate endlessly what isn't acceptable to you now, nor to try to find a new manner of appealing to your sensibilities on the subject. Your mind is made up, which is your privilege and choice. So are the minds and hearts of us who already know the answer.

  • Maudine SLC, UT
    April 13, 2013 2:52 p.m.

    How does allowing same-sex marriage threaten religious freedom? How does allowing same-sex marriage differ from allowing other things religious groups oppose?

  • Linguist Silver Spring, MD
    April 13, 2013 2:35 p.m.

    I am a person of faith. My partner of many years and I were married, by a rabbi, in a mainstream Temple, before God and our families. It was wonderful. It gave social and religious standing to what was already, for many years, the most important aspect of our shared lives.

    People are free not to believe in God the way we do, of course. And their religions may carry out different rites, and may set their own conditions for those rites. That's about faith, though, and I think we have to respectfully acknowledge that we may all never agree, nor do we have to.

    Now we are looking to protect our most important relationship legally, civilly, so that we are not legal strangers to one another.

    We share a house, a car, a mortgage, bills, decisions about what to have for dinner and decisions about life and death.

    I see very little difference between the way my partner and I live our lives from that of our non-gay, married neighbors. Those couples apparently felt the need to protect their most important relationship with a single marriage contract. We need to protect ours as well.

  • lds4gaymarriage Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 1:24 p.m.

    The issue boils down to is "To what extent can government power be used against churches who promote ideas that the government dislikes?"

    If gay marriages become legal, the government could revoke the Church's privilege to perform legally recognized marriages. Jesus said to "render unto Caesar" the things that are Caesar's. Legal/governmentally recognized marriage belongs to Caesar. If LDS/Evangelicals won't provide this legally recognized act for gays, government could rightly prevent any LDS/Evangelical clergy from performing a LEGALLY recognized marriage. LDS couples would have to be married at City Hall and then, if they choose, have a NON-legally recognized temple sealing. This is done in other countries already where LDS and/or religious weddings are not legally recognized. Churches do NOT have a 1st Amendment right to have their marriages recognized by Caesar.

    Revoking tax-exempt status is far-fetched. Even many gay marriage supporters would reject that and would support a constitutional amendment restoring it. Doing so would also violate the 1st Amendment since government would be rewarding/punishing churches based on RELIGIOUS doctrine. That would violate "equal protection" as well.

    I believe that the above is something we could live with.

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 13, 2013 1:17 p.m.

    First of all, the title to this article is hilarious. The only way these guys are icons, is if you change the meaning of the word icon.

    Second, the whole argument about whether lealizing gay marriage will end religious liberty is a huge red herring. Therefore the subject of the "debate" between these two is ridiculous and we are wasting our time listening to them.

    People who have a problem with gay marriage are slowly dying off just as people who had a problem with interracial marriage died off. It's time to get over it.

  • kamaina Flagstaff, AZ
    April 13, 2013 1:05 p.m.

    So agree with Eagles63. I don't think Govenor Levitt is agreeing with gay marriage, as much as he's saying it's a battle that is basically over. Statistically the support has grown and grown. I read an article reacently where supporters of Gay marriage basically said, don't rock the boat, wait for the current support to die off and the eventuallity of Gay Marriage passing is a forgone reality. The battle now is keeping religous freedom. Just as plural marriage became a political hot point for the church in 1890, so will our stance and the stance of other religions that teach against a gay lifesytle end up in the "cross hairs" as Eagles63 noted.

  • alpinecoach kearns, UT
    April 13, 2013 12:41 p.m.

    I do not believe "gay marriage" is any sort of threat to religious freedom. If you want your church to live a certain way, that right will not be abridged, just as you cannot abridge the rights of others that have different beliefs.

  • averageguy WASHINGTON, UT
    April 13, 2013 12:31 p.m.

    In these posts I see lots of great arguments for gay marriage from very smart people. When men get pregnant and naturally produce babies THEN I might believe that this argument is about family. Same for two women. This is not an argument about whats best for society. It's about truth contortion and self justification. It's about wanting to command God against His natural order. Maybe if we gay marriage is true and good long enough it will be true. IT WON"T! You may say it enough to change public opinion and get your way, but it will NEVER be true.

  • UteRB77 Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 13, 2013 12:23 p.m.

    Religious liberty was intended to allow a person to follow his conscience without government intervention or consequence. It is the foundational cornerstone to preserve and maintain a free and prosperous society.

    It was intended that religious liberty would provide individuals with the values, standards, and moral convictions that would influence the structure and stability of public society. It was not intended that religion would have no influence on society, that we would leave our beliefs at the pulpit. Quite the contrary, it was intended that government would not prohibit the free exercise of religion, with the expectation that religious freedom would thrive and prosper without persecution, in order to provide a stable and moral backdrop for a strong and sustainable sovereign society.

    Our founding Fathers were very well studied in the Greek and Roman cultures. They understood the best those societies offered, and the weaknesses that brought them to their destruction. Our founding fathers expected that individual conscience through religious liberty would provide the influence in establishing public policy to preserve a nation from moral and civil decay.

  • Walt Nicholes Orem, UT
    April 13, 2013 11:46 a.m.

    What if there were a Church who believed only in same-sex marriage? It sounds extreme, and contrary to all religious forms currently existing, but with the name "church" being applied to a wider and wider range of organizations such an organization is not impossible. There has already been a church that believed in absolute celibacy for both men and women.

    So would this hypothetical church be given full freedom of religion? Or would lawmakers and regulators insist that to be a "real" church they would have to fit within existing definitional confines?

    The sword cuts both ways. The fight for morality and liberty are not the same fight. I once penned: "The only government that can completely guarantee full freedom of religion is a non-religious government." I also wrote "The constitution does not exist to promote righteousness, it exists to promote liberty."

    If you follow the logic there is only one destination - Libertarianism.

  • Sneaky Jimmy Bay Area, CA
    April 13, 2013 11:45 a.m.

    How does professor george rationalize punishing people for the way they are born?

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    April 13, 2013 11:40 a.m.


    Sorry for my skepticism of your "quote" from the supreme court but would you please site the case this "quote" came from since you seem to believe you have stumbled onto something that everyone on this debate has missed for the last 20 plus years.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    April 13, 2013 11:19 a.m.


    Sorokin has been mischaracterized by opponents of same-sex marriage. The key to enduring civilizations, according to Sorokin, was altruism. He founded the Center for Altruism at Harvard. He wrote about the importance of family units and about the evils of war. He wrote about the decline of civil society as people seeking merely to please themselves.

    Marriage signifies couples making a committment to each other-- forsaking all others. It is a stabilizing force in society and in families.

    The enemy of marriage is not same-sex marriage-- but promiscuity and infidelity.

  • Gracie Boise, ID
    April 13, 2013 11:21 a.m.

    Hutterite: "'Religious liberty' needs to be contained in the context of religion, not the larger society."

    A great argument for hypocrisy, for a "double-minded man" or woman who is "unstable in all his ways."

    Make sure religion doesn't influence anything one does in "the larger society." Why then bother with religion at all?

  • 1covey Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 10:58 a.m.

    States are legalizing same-sex marriages; States are legalizing the use of marijuana.

    . What does this tell us? The country is going to pot.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 13, 2013 10:50 a.m.

    @Brentbot --

    "The omens are clear from the fall of the Roman (and earlier) Empires."

    The ancient Roman and Greek civilizations each lasted for roughly 1000 years -- and both of them encouraged homosexual relationships. That's a lot longer than we've been around.

    Unwin died 80 years ago. Sorokin died more than 50 years ago, and he was regarded by many as a kook besides. We've learned a lot about the world since then.

    @JBQ --

    "Love is lacking in a sexual relationship."


    Hopefully, most married couples are having sexual relations. Do they therefore not have love??

    I know gay couples who have been together for decades -- through thick and thin, richer and poorer, sickness and health. Is that not love??

    "It would appear that our society is going the way of the great Roman civilization."

    The great Roman civilization lasted for 1000 years.

    @Tekakaromatagi --

    "The movement to silence those who support traditional marriage is the McCarthyism of our time."

    Nobody is being silenced. Heck, this UVU symposium wouldn't have been *possible* if anyone was being silenced.

    However, some folks HAVE needed to be reminded that we live in a Constitutional Democracy -- not a theocracy.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    April 13, 2013 10:26 a.m.

    If they attack religous freedom, that would violate the 1st amendment. That is a battle they will not win because they would be suppressing the 1st amendment.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    Many churches have no problem with same-sex marriage and are glad to solemnize them. Yet Mr. George apparently has no qualms about using the power of the state to infringe on their religious liberty. For him, it seems, liberty is only for those who agree with him. He will have to resolve this conflict for his argument to have any merit and be taken seriously.

  • BrentBot Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    Why does the public discourse not discuss the impact of SSM on our civilization? The omens are clear from the fall of the Roman (and earlier) Empires.

    Marriage reflects the natural moral and social law evidenced the world over. As the late British social anthropologist Joseph Daniel Unwin noted in his study of world civilizations, any society that devalued the nuclear family soon lost what he called "expansive energy," which might best be summarized as society's will to make things better for the next generation. In fact, no society that has loosened sexual morality outside of man-woman marriage has survived.

    Analyzing studies of cultures spanning several thousands of years on several continents, Chairman of Harvard University’s sociology department, Pitirim Sorokin. found that virtually all political revolutions that brought about societal collapse were preceded by a sexual revolution in which marriage and family were devalued by the culture’s acceptance of homosexuality.

    Giving same-sex relationships the same special status and benefits as the marital bond would not be the expansion of a right but the destruction of a bedrock foundation of civilization.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    April 13, 2013 10:04 a.m.


    "Accept the consequences of those choices"

    The question is--who will act as "judge" and impose the "consequences?"

    You or God?

    God commanded us to love one another as ourselves above all other commandments except to love Him. He also commanded us to not judge.

    I know if i were homosexual i would not/could not live my entire life without a companion and marriage partner, or without hope of ever having a companion and marriage partner.

  • BrentBot Salt Lake City, UT
    April 13, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    The US Supreme Court declared in 1885 that states' marriage laws must be based on "the idea of the family, as consisting in and springing from the union for life of one man and one woman in the holy estate of matrimony; the sure foundation of all that is stable and noble in our civilization, the best guaranty of that reverent morality which is the source of all beneficent progress in social and political improvement."

  • JBQ Saint Louis, MO
    April 13, 2013 9:50 a.m.

    Tough issue but the family is the stable unit of society. This means a mother and a father and the special love of a mother. Love is lacking in a sexual relationship. Alfred Adler equated sex with power. Selfless love is seen as giving and not taking. We are a sex obsessed and self fulfilling society. It would appear that our society is going the way of the great Roman civilization. The barbarians (translation Germania) overcame and overthrew the vaunted Roman discipline. The phalanx was replaced by the mob. The National Socialism of Nazi Germany was one long range result. The Egyptian pharohs evolved into Islam. The orthodoxy of the czars was obliterated by Communism. Now, we have forces at work to unite all of these forces together into a one world church-state. Religion is the target and not the accomodation whether it be that of the pharohs, Mohammed, Moses, or Christ. All are seen as male dominated and not gay friendly.

  • Jonathan Eddy Payson, UT
    April 13, 2013 9:44 a.m.

    The true argument here has really nothing to do with marriage. It has everything to do with equality. Monetary equality, not human rights equality. At some point in the past, marriage lost its sanctity and became secular, more of a business contract between two people. When marriage transformed, local and federal government butted in, seeing marriage as a taxable event. Marriage is now nothing more than a government benefits, corporate benefits and IRS consideration.

    Gays. Straights. Forget about it. Who cares anymore. Everyone just wants benefits, not safe, secure happy families. The real losers in this political, money driven game are single people. No marriage. No tax breaks. As long as marriage is a government run and controlled contractual event, it will be nothing sacred, or important or meaningful.

    If marriage continues to be monitored by the government, marriage will continue to be a joke; a mockery before God. That is of course if God exists and I'm not so sure if the majority of humanity really believes one does anymore because the art and beauty of procreation seems to be in a state of devolution.

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    April 13, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    The movement to silence those who support traditional marriage is the McCarthyism of our time. History does not repeat itself but it rhymes and right now it is rhyming like McCarthyism.

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    April 13, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    Good grief, Professor George. Anyone who passionately advocates for including gays in marriage rights is also a passionate advocate of family and marriage, period.

  • followerofChrist Crawford County, PA
    April 13, 2013 8:36 a.m.

    If followers of Jesus get involved in political agendas, might they lose in the end no matter which position they take?

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    April 13, 2013 8:17 a.m.

    Gay marriage is not about love, but are acts we all know to be being wrong. Rationalization does not justify.

    Society thrives on a strong family unit of a man, and women, and we need leaders who'll step up to the plate and leads us in a positive direction.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 13, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    Anyone who is concerned about families and children should SUPPORT gay marriage, not fight it.

    More than 100,000 gay couples in the US are *already* raising children, with or without marriage. These gay-led families won't be going away. Giving these couples the right to marry will increase the stability of their households, and help their children. How is that a bad thing?

    Many groups of child-development experts -- including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Psychiatric Association, AND the American Psychological Association -- officially **support** gay marriage.

    The AAP's position statement declares, in part: “There is an emerging consensus, based on extensive review of the scientific literature, that children growing up in households headed by gay men or lesbians are not disadvantaged in any significant respect relative to children of heterosexual parents" and "Marriage strengthens families and benefits child development".

    You will not find ANY groups of child-development experts who oppose gay marriage.

    People who think children are important should ENCOURAGE gay marriages, because marriage encourages stable families -- and THAT is what helps kids.

  • frugalfly PULLMAN, WA
    April 13, 2013 8:03 a.m.

    The marriage equality/sexual orientation civil rights groups end goals are not marriage equality nor sexual orientation civil rights. Their end goal is to marginalize religion. Their end goal is to destroy religious liberty which was the founding liberty of our nation. It was liberty #1! Now it will be gone. Their goal is to change the 4000 year old Judeo-Christian marriage ethic of male and female. I am surprised at how naive many good intentioned christians are of the marriage equality/sexual orientation civil rights groups line of "our same sex marriage doesn't effect your rights". They are using this line to get in the door and those sucker enough to accept that line at the door will find out when they get in the house that they will take a sledge hammer to the house. But by then it will be too late.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    April 13, 2013 7:56 a.m.

    'Religious liberty' needs to be contained in the context of religion, not the larger society. Otherwise, we are all prisoners of religion, and that's not how it's supposed to work.

  • Eagles63 Provo, UT
    April 13, 2013 7:51 a.m.

    I would submit that the ultimate outcome in the same-marriage game is the effort to destroy organized religion. How often have we seen in history a group attacking one entity when the ultimate prize was something completely different? Yes, where this is headed is a high-noon showdown with organized religion. The pathway is logical. With the passage of same-sex marriage, the inevitable focus of certain elements within that movement will set their sights on the ultimate prize: challenging the legitimacy of religious organizations that refuse to sanction same-sex marriage. It makes absolute sense then to attack religions that will not accept same-sex marriage. The bully club that the federal government has at its disposal is tax status. As non-profit entities, they will find themselves in the cross-hairs of the leaders of the current same-sex movement, who will brand such religions as bigoted and illegal entities. Once sufficient judicial strength is established, inevitably the organizations' non-profit tax status will be lost. Too far-fetched, impossible you say? Hardly, see today's attacks on the BSA. Without doubt, the ultimate prize is not same sex marriage. It's our religion.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    April 13, 2013 7:49 a.m.

    The reality is that George has confused government support for religion with freedom of religion. The only way this gets resolved is to leave the contract to the government and the sacrament to the churches, instead of combining the two as we now do. Ironically, that is the only way to truly advance the cause of freedom of religion in a diverse society.

  • Albert Maslar CPA (Retired) Absecon, NJ
    April 13, 2013 7:49 a.m.

    Princeton professor Robert P. George is right in saying the family is the foundation of just about everything good in the country including the economy, culture, and health, and welfare. Gays have a human right to make choices, right or wrong, but their same-sex unions cannot arbitrarily be raised to the same level as traditional marriage. Gays have the right of free choice for their lifestyles in the same way that Adam and Eve were given the free choice not to eat of the forbidden tree. Mankind was given the right to free choice, but not necessarily without price especially when that choice goes against nature itself. Humans are free to disobey God-given precepts but at their own peril. Gays choose to live lifestyles contrary to God's command to increase and multiply and that is the ultimate test. Gay unions can no more be called marriage anymore than soda and other beverages can be called water. Once flavors have been added to water, the resulting beverage is no longer water.

  • Florien Wineriter Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 13, 2013 7:04 a.m.

    Gov Leavitt, as always, expresses the res;ponsible, thoughtful response to the question of same-sex ,marriage. We owe respect to all humans. Our gay borthers and sisters deserve the happiness and fulfillments we desire for ourselves.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    April 13, 2013 5:21 a.m.

    Robert George is correct the fight must go on or religious liberty will cease. The effort to punish and silence the LDS church for its efforts on Prop 8 is continuing. Hollywood and billionaire leftists have created documentaries that have been cruel and slanted.Obama has
    Gay Marriage as a cornerstone of his second term. The family will disenengrate at an even
    faster pace if those supporting marriage give up.

  • jasonlivy Orem, UT
    April 13, 2013 12:04 a.m.

    From what I see from this article is one man who has political courage and one that does not. I personally don't care if the gay marriage issue is a "political certainty" or not. I can't in good conscience support gay marriage.

    I believe that we as a people need to be free to make our own choices and accept the consequences to those choices. I believe those who actively practice homosexuality, like any major choice in our life, has consequences. I do not put homosexuality in the same 'civl rights' category as race and gender. I do not believe that being black or white, male and female is the same as who we choose to have sex with.

    I also believe that a traditional family (a Mother and Father) is the most essential ingredient to the foundation of any civilization. True many heterosexual marriages fail, but that does not justify marginalizing them or make this an argument for gay marriage. Traditional marriage is eternal and was established from the beginning of time. We are fools to think we can simply change it's definition. We do so at our own peril.

    April 12, 2013 11:33 p.m.

    Leavitt is a bought and paid for politician. His views reflect those who think you can compromise with principle and morality. Very disappointed.