Recognizing Cultural & Political Shifts

I think it’s important to learn from a cultural shift that’s happening on an issue that’s both personal and political. It’s also one that has the potential to deeply divide a political party with one side believing that accepting a perceived “new” right will undermine everything they hold dear about their political ideology while others in the party are more open-minded to the change and even support it. One might assume that I’m talking about the issues of personal firearms ownership & self-defense and how they are viewed by Democrats outside of urban centers versus those in entrenched liberal areas. Actually, I think the issue I’m going to highlight is how the Democrats could view the cultural shifts on gun ownership through lessons the GOP should be learning on the issue of same-sex marriage.

If you follow any DC-based conservatives on Twitter at all, you’ve heard of CPAC. It has long been considered an event for conservatives to gather and talk about issues that make them identify as conservatives. For a few years, under the leadership of now-NRA president David Keene, CPAC allowed GOProud–a group of gay conservatives–to be co-sponsors and attend the event. After Keene left the helm of the group that puts on CPAC, they suddenly banned GOProud.

This year was no different in terms of a formal ban on the group, but another co-sponsoring organization was given the right to use a room to host their own panel. CEI opted to do an entire panel called “A Rainbow on the Right.” Photos show that the room was absolutely packed to the gills. Most of the folks in that photo are clearly young. They are the future of the movement. Meanwhile, CPAC officially hosted a panel with the National Organization for Marriage shortly before the Rainbow panel. The same link above compares the photos. That room was nearly empty. It featured rows and rows of empty seats.

Then, today, Senator Rob Portman officially came out in support of same-sex marriage. He notes that by supporting state decisions on marriage, and by ensuring that religious freedom is respected even while civil marriage rights are expanded, it’s an inherently conservative position on the side of limited government and individual freedom. It’s no secret here that both Sebastian and I support government recognition of same-sex marriages, so we both consider this really great news.

As I looked at the this debate this morning with the visible GOProud support, the lack of interest in the traditional marriage panel, and the op-ed that is likely sending many older folks on the right into a tizzy, I couldn’t help but see parallels in the left’s desperation to cling to gun control. For example, I was surfing the hashtags for the Pennsylvania Progressive Summit recently when I learned they were having a panel on gun control. During the panel and immediately after, the only tweets I saw at all from that panel all came from the official Summit account. Reading the tweets from actual activists during the session time period and immediately following, they were all focused on the student debt and right to work panels. In other words, they weren’t even in the room. There was not a single tweet during or immediately following the panel on gun control that came from a real activist even though there was an entire panel dedicated to the topic. That shows me that they have the same kind of enthusiasm gap on their side for the gun issue. And, like the gay marriage issue dividing some folks on the GOP side of the debate, the embrace of extreme gun control by party leaders from deep blue urban areas has cost members of their party from areas outside of those enclaves votes that cost elections. When Democratic Representative Dan Boren retired from Congress, he told the press that he didn’t feel the national party scene would allow him to continue to be “a local Democrat,…an Oklahoma Democrat.”

At some point, the “traditional” sides of each of these issues within each movement will need to accept the inevitable. Whether it’s gay rights or gun rights, many people are taking the attitude that if the decisions of another aren’t hurting them, they don’t feel the need to control it.

71 thoughts on “Recognizing Cultural & Political Shifts”

  1. Excellent article.

    I’d love to see the old guard bible thumping GOP give up the ghost. Their ridiculous social stances are just as odious to me as the gun grabbing of the left. Which is why I hate pro-2a Joe Pitts. Not all Dem voters are brain dead libtard Obama-worshiping progressives. Some are just trying to decide which is the lesser evil.

    Hopefully November 2014 teaches the left a lesson on gun control that they wont forget. Then a runaway 2016 Presidential win for Rand Paul ushers in a Libertarian revolution in the GOP. Can you imagine seeing a politician in office you were proud to vote for? Would be a first in my lifetime.

    1. Dumping the “Bible thumpers” in exchange for libertarians will make the Republican Party even smaller than it is today. (Social conservatives are about 16-20% of the American electorate; libertarians? If it is even 5%, I would be surprised.)

      The point that a lot of people here seem to miss is that much of the support for gay marriage hardly comes from libertarians; it comes from a crowd that wants antidiscrimination laws that REQUIRE you to smile stupidly and say, “Yes, I think what you are doing is just fine” or face huge fines, as happened to Elaine Hugenin in New Mexico. We have already seen where this leads with pastors arrested and jailed in England and in Sweden for preaching that homosexuality is a sin. Make no mistake about it: there will be no peace on this issue until Christianity has been thoroughly gelded with respect to not only homosexuality, but adultery, and sexual abuse of children. There’s a reason that intellectuals like John Maynard Keynes were so big on sex with boys — it is the ultimate refutation of Christian values.

      1. Maybe a small percentage self-identify as libertarian, but I suspect huge numbers would show up at voting booths for libertarian-leaning candidates (as happened in 2010).

      2. There’s a reason that intellectuals like John Maynard Keynes were so big on sex with boys — it is the ultimate refutation of Christian values.

        I’d love to go ape-poop over that stupid line, but out of respect for the blog I won’t. I can’t even find the words to describe what a ridiculous statement that is.

    2. First of all, there’s nothing I said above that means getting rid of social conservatives in the GOP. I have no problem with social conservatives as individuals – even those who serve in government. I may not agree with every decision they make, but I wouldn’t for libertarian-leaning Republicans, either. I’m a fan of actually reaching out to those you dismiss so handily and uniting on why getting government out of our lives and having more civil society in our lives is a good thing. Families and engaged communities – whether those are social clubs or religious institutions for each family – are better than government bureaucrats. I think that’s a message that we can bring more people around on regardless of how often they attend church.

  2. The GOP’s embrace of the Moral Majority (which, famously, was neither ‘moral’ nor a ‘majority’) is responsible for most of my peers in Generation X and/or Y (I’m 31) turning to the Democratic Party in their teens… and very rarly stopping to look back.

    If the Republican Party wants to win anything beyond 2014 other than mayoral races in Kansas and Arkansas, they need to embrace their libertarian wing and their civil rights roots. The Moral Majority types need to go.

  3. For the party thats always pushing “limited government”, I find it frustrating that the GOP keeps promoting their restrictive social ideas. You can’t have it both ways! Either you’re for freedom, of all kinds, or you’re just another hypocrite. Leave the social issues to the churches, communities and families. Amazing how big the tent would get.

    1. The problem with the GOP is that they have only given lip service to the idea of small government. Oh how I yearn for a viable party or two that actually was for small government! I’d be very happy if we had two parties agreeing on the idea that most of government just needs to go, and then just squabble on the social issues.

      For what it’s worth, I would also point out that a portion of Social Conservatives would be more than happy to get the Federal government out of social issues, and let social issues get worked out on a state by state basis….

  4. How is it limited government to require marriage to include same sex marriage? The end goal is to require churches to go aginst the religous doctrine and marry gays.

    1. Since when were churches required, by any state in the union, to perform marriages? The chruches can marry the members of their congregation that want church weddings, the rest of us can head on down to the Justice of the Peace or the County Clerk’s office.

      No one expects a Catholic Chruch to perform a wedding ceremony for a pair of Lutherans.

      1. States have a long tradition of telling churches who they may not marry (starting in 1664 with Maryland’s laws prohibiting clergy from marrying interracial couples). It is no leap to argue that if the state has the authority to require businesses to serve gay people, then it has the authority to require churches to marry gay people. There is already a case out of New Jersey where a church was required to rent a reception hall to a gay marriage reception.

    2. What do you think I meant by “by ensuring that religious freedom is respected”? I have never heard a small government supporter of gay marriage who in any way accepts forcing religions to honor same-sex marriages.

      1. New Jersey had a case a couple of years back where a church was being sued by the state for discrimination because they did not want to rent their reception hall out for a gay wedding. This isn’t an area where everyone is allowed to be free; gay activists are intent on suppressing any disapproval, no matter how meek, because of severe self-esteem problems.

        1. I heard about the NJ case, and I totally disagree with the result of that. That’s a big government problem we need to overturn – like many big government problems.

  5. One problem that both Sebasitan and Bitter have pointed out is that the moral majority folks are the ones that show up as warm bodies for campaigns. They’ve got both the postive and negative reinforcement going.

    It’s like the warm bodies that show up for the Left. Course the left has stronger top-down discipline and their excesses are quieted up.

    1. This. It doesn’t matter how many conferences they show up to if they’re the ones volunteering for mailings and such.
      And we’ve got a chicken or the egg problem trying to replace them. Sounds like candidates will have to start losing elections despite their help before a realignment can happen.

  6. Unfortunately the proponents of gay marriage don’t see it your way. They have for years been trying to get homosexuality pushed in our faces and in our churches. If what you’re asking for includes forcing businesses to recognize same sex couples for benefits, forget it. If you claim to want limited government, you would say that the government should stay out of defining marriage in the first place. That I could agree with. “Embracing” homosexual marriage and codifying it under law is not a limited government stance. It’s social engineering.

    As for the “traditionalist” sides, the same GOP that supports gun rights supports traditional marriage in large numbers.

    1. Do you think that the people who flooded the GOProud event aren’t in support of gun rights, too? Supporting gay marriage and gun rights are not mutually exclusive positions.

      1. They aren’t mutually exclusive, but on a national basis, there’s a reason that states that have gone down the gay marriage path (even if ordered by the courts) are noticeably antigun.

            1. I mentioned NH because I have solid knowledge of its’ gun laws. In addition, Iowa, VT, Maine, and WA are all pretty good gun law wise as far as I know. That’s five of the nine gay marriage states.

  7. The GOP is the party of “small government” and they want to control who gets married.

    government should not be in the “business” of marriage, control of marriage, regulation of marriage or for that matter anything to do with marriage.

    Yesterday, when Feinstein tangled with Cruz she made a very pertinent statement – ham fisted paraphrase: “we are in congress and congress is in the business of making laws. If the supreme court says they’re unconstitutional then that is that”.

    This fairly well breaks down the mindset of Congress over the last few generations. Whether on the left of the political spectrum or the right the common denominator in Congress is the desire to enact laws, restrict freedom and imprison those who don’t think like them.

    Although individually congress has a very strong inclination to do nothing or nothing of substance, institutionally they are drawn to create new laws, even where new laws are bad.
    The result of this “group think” in congress is predictable. Those from neo-soc(ialist) areas push for socially engineered law & policy restrictions and welfare entitlements, those from ‘conservative’ areas push to restrict … well, family conduct, social issues just from a different angle.

    1. If gay activists had sought to persuade states to recognize gay marriage, it would not have generated the enormous concern that this bogus equal protection claim forced by the courts created. There is absolutely no way that the 14th Amendment’s framers would have EVER considered gay marriage an equal protection claim. Homosexuality was a criminal offense (usually a felony) in 1868. The notion of a right to gay marriage would have been a sign of mental illness, not of progressive thinking, in 1868.

  8. Regarding both of the above comments, generationally speaking, I am a few weeks too old to be officially a Baby Boomer. But what that means is that I’m old enough to remember when “libertarian” had a definition that never would have been applied to Rand Paul, and it pains me to see the definition having evolved (deliberately perverted, IMO, but that’s another essay) so that it seems to, at least in the common tongue. The point being, the Republican Party would have a long, LONG way to go before appealing much to c. 1980s or earlier libertarians, though we’d be happy with anything they’d actually deliver on. We’d be happy with whatever either party actually delivered on.

    The only major party I was ever registered with (other than a week or two at a time, to vote in a Republican primary) was the Democratic Party, but that was in my younger days, when it was inherited from my family, like religion — though it was never treated as a religion. I have not been registered with a major party in about 30 years, nor with any party for almost 20 years.

    But back to the main subject: While Americans IMO will always be thoroughgoing lovers of The State, on an issue-by-issue basis there does seem to be a cultural trend toward some genuine live-and-let-live libertarianism, and whichever party gets in front of that is likely to have electoral success, nationally. The faction with a problem will be the one that places too much credence in the authoritarianism of religion and the religion of authoritarianism.

      1. n many ways the neo-conservative wing has spoiled the GOP. Rand is somewhat of a byproduct. However, he is not like his dad. I did vote for his dad. I probably could go for Rand if he backs off the hawkish foreign policy business.

        I think Rand saw that to fit into the party he would have to be different from his dad. I don’t know if that is the best move, but he’s in a much better position today for it. I don’t know that we will ever see a true libertarian take office in our lifetimes.

        1. We won’t see a true libertarian in office in our lifetimes because Americans are not strongly libertarian. They are a significant portion of the population, but they are a small minority. There are many people who are libertarian on particular issues, but not generally libertarian. I remember the first survey completed back in the 1980s that tried to categorize survey results into liberal, conservative, libertarian, and populist, found that while there was a large population that leaned libertarian (about 1/4 of the population) the percentage that was consistently libertarian was tiny — about 0.7%, far smaller than the consistently conservative, liberal, and populist sections.

  9. Whether it’s gay rights or gun rights, many people are taking the attitude that if the decisions of another aren’t hurting them, they don’t feel the need to control it.

    Well said… should be quote of the day.

    1. If gay people want to get married in whatever church they want, no one will pay any attention at all. It is the insistence on state recognition (enforced by the courts) that has caused so many states to explictly reject it.

  10. In practice, “gay rights” means that Christians lose their rights. “Tolerance” means “Shut up, Christian.” The Canadian Supreme Court ruled recently that certain Christian pamphlets regarding chastity were “hate speech” and therefore not legally protected free speech; this kind of thing is happening in Europe, too.

    “Gay rights,” in practice, means that Christians lose their First Amendments rights to free speech and free exercise of religion, which requires us to bear witness to the world.

    1. Just because they make gay marriage legal doesn’t mean they’re going to make it mandatory. You’ll still be married to your wife and/or husband, and I’ll still be married to mine. (At least until the divorce is final, but that’s besides the point.)

      Christians* will keep their First Amendment rights speak out against gays, and gays* will keep their First Amendment rights to tell those same Christians to shove it. The solution to speech you dislike is more speech, not censorship.

      *Of course, not all Christians argee that gays shouldn’t have equal rights… and not all gays will be so rude. It’s a big old world.

      1. Ish,

        So far I have seen nothing on the side of history that supports your conclusion that Christians would be left alone once “gay marriage” is embraced. The cases in Canada are scary reminders of that. You also seem to be forgetting the part that human nature and bias plays into government decisionmaking.

      2. Like they just want a conversation does not mean they want to ban guuns or make gun owners criminals by defintion. The ral goal is to require the churches to approve gay marriage

        1. Legal barriers to marriage contracts between consenting adults, for something as silly as the hue of their skin or the contents of their underwear, is a stark violation of the Nonagression Principle. You are advocting that the force of the state be used to enforce your will on a third-party.

          Using the force of the state to compel a private group (ie, church, synagouge, Uncle Ed’s Oil Change franchisee) to perform a wedding ceremony is also wrong… and for the same reason.

          Beleive it or not, there are more than two options here. It doesn’t have to be Sodom and Gamorra, nor does it have to be the United States of Bibleland.

          (Also, as the only gay activist in this thread can I also point out that many LGBT folks are also fiercely protective of our right to keep and bear arms.)

          1. Unfortunately, there aren’t many gay libertarians. I really don’t think it is a sensible use of the government’s time to tell consenting adults what they can do in private. It makes even less sense to send someone to prison for homosexuality. (Why would you lock a man up in an all-male facility for years on end if you want to discourage homosexuality?)

            But the problem is that Americans are not libertarians; many believe that which is not prohibited should be required. And gay activists are intent on suppressing all disapproval, to deal with fundamental self-esteem problems.

      3. It doesn’t matter what many or even most gays decide. The activists decide public policy. I know plenty of gay people who see gay marriage as irrelevant, or at most, a minor concern. But the activists, because they control the courts, the law schools, the colleges, and K-12 education, will insist on suppressing all differing opinions. Hence, the use of antidiscrimination laws to suppress freedom of speech.

  11. I agree with Bitter and Sebastian. Freedom is freedom. We cannot say “You can’t prohibit firearms, because we want freedom” and simultaneously say “Government should prohibit marriage contracts between two men (or two women) and contend that we are fighting for freedom in both cases.

    I agree that the federal government should not be in the marriage business at all as much as I think that they should not be in the gun control business at all.

    –Matt R.

    1. Government is not PROHIBITING such contracts. It is refusing to recognize it. There is a big difference there. You want to write a contract between two people dividing up property in case of divorce? I don’t care. It’s not my concern. But insisting that the state MUST recognize same-sex marriage just so that the participants can pretend that they are okay is absurd. If that’s the only way to win elections, we might as well just let this whole disaster happen.

      1. Perhaps government should just quit recognizing all marriages. There are over a thousand recognized federal benefits, rights and responsibilities that come with marriage — and perhaps you and your wife would be willing to forego all of those?

  12. The solution is simple. Get rid of Gov’t recognition of ‘marriage’ and make it a civil contract between consenting adults. If you want a ‘church wedding’, go for it but it has no legal standing.

    Then everyone who wants to can be ‘married’ and the divorce lawyers will still have their area of expertise being used.

    1. Actually, Hawaii created a bit of an interesting contract model. The background is relevant on this, so let me be a tad long-winded about my understanding of how things happened there.

      Hawaii’s Supreme Court actually ruled they had to accept same-sex marriages back in 1993. However, the people revolted and passed a constitutional ban (of sorts) by nearly 70-30 a few years later. That’s deep blue Hawaii we’re talking about. So Hawaii created a sort of system that, by my understanding, essentially lets you set up government recognized partnerships between any two people who cannot marry – same-sex, blood relation, etc. Effectively, if you’re building a household together in some manner, you can have many of the state benefits and protections that come with marriage, but there’s no implication of an intimate relationship. It could be used to better serve adult children who are living with and helping care for their parents or other family relationships. I think this is really neat because it offers a tool to help promote families in general that take on many forms nowadays. Now the state also offers civil unions, but that was a recent development.

      Since I haven’t heard of the state of Hawaii collapsing under the weight of these legally recognized partnerships of sorts, I actually think it’s an idea worth exploring more that’s a middle ground option.

      1. California had such an approach, too. But that wasn’t good enough for the gay activists. They insisted that civil unions were unfair, making them second class citizens, and demanded that the courts overturn the will of the people.

      2. That’s really interesting. It’s a shame there’ll be no motivation to do anything like that here after gay marriage goes through.
        Guess we missed our chance to do something innovative.

    2. That may be the only option left on this, but I am sure that the courts will then rule that the state may not withdraw official recognition of marriage, because it was done to disadvantage gays. Essentially, that’s what Romer v. Evans (1997) did: it declared that because the people of Colorado, by referendum, prohibited state and local governments from passing antidiscrimination laws about sexual orientation (and this is an essentially libertarian action), it put homosexuals at a disadvantage politically. I expect that taking this path would lead the courts to rule that the state MUST recognize gay marriage but CANNOT recognize straight marriage.

      Our society is dying, fast. Perhaps it is best to let the disaster happen, and hope that something rational comes out of the bloodshed that will result.

  13. As a Constitutional Conservative and devout Catholic, I am troubled by this debate. I am troubled because I find no mention of marriage in the Constitution. I am also troubled because as a Catholic, Marriage (note the big M) is something we consider sacred. If I were “King for a Day”, I would eliminate marriage from the laws of our country, and establish civil unions for all. Marriage would be left to the various religions who sanctify the union under the teachings and beliefs of said religion. The states would then regulate civil union laws, since this is not listed in the Constitution as a Federal responsibility (I love the 10th Amendment). Along the same lines, during my day as King, I would eliminate most anti-gun laws, leaving that to the states too. Would that create a hodge-podge of laws? Yes! But in the end, I believe it would balance out.

    1. Actually, the Constitution, Art. IV, sec. 1: “Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws prescribe the manner in which such acts, records, and proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof.”

      This is why marriages and divorces from one state are generally recognized in other states, unless in conflict with the other state’s laws.

      1. I agree with a But! Marriage, in and of itself, is not mentioned. So I revert to my positions that marriage as a legal document should be eliminated, and civil unions establish as the contract vehicle to protect ANY union of two people. Leave Marraige to the religions…seperate the two!

      2. No. That merely gives the vehicle for “marriages” to be recognized. What Von Clausewitz is (correctly – IMHO) arguing is that the federal government and the various states should only be recognizing rights of civil unions, not marriages.

      3. And as long as they apply that to ALL public acts, etc. it doesn’t pose a problem.

        So tomorrow my TX CHL will let me carry in NYC no matter what Bloomberg thinks, right?

  14. I see in the above the argument being made that same-sex marriage will lead to suppression of Christians’ freedom of speech. That seems like a logical disconnect to me, even if Christian’s feel their freedom of speech was wrongly suppressed in the cited Canadian example. Among other things, it is apparent Canada’s enshrinement of free speech is not as expansive as ours. (We seem to tolerate a great deal from, e.g., Rev. Phelps et al at the Westboro Baptist Church.)

    But in any case, saying “‘A’ happened and then ‘B’ happened, so clearly ‘A’ causes ‘B’,” is logically invalid. Those of us inclined to defend the rights of gays to marry, are equally inclined to defend speech we may believe to be obnoxious. That everyone may not feel that way doesn’t prove a lot, other than that those who value liberty need to stay organized — and consistent.

    I have to admit that I have never actually seen quoted the “religious” speech that the Canadians declared to be “hate” speech, but to make an analogy, if Muslim(s) were using passages from the Koran to actively encourage violence against infidels (i.e., active “incitement”) I could see where it would not be considered protected speech — though even that could be subjective. I use the example of Muslims only to amplify the point; if Christians were distributing literature quoting the Old Testament in such a way that they seemed to be actively encouraging violence against gays (or women or slaves or disobedient sons) it would not seem to be totally unreasonable to say it is not protected speech, even if its source is an established historical religious text.

    I have occasionally been chided for referring to called-out bible passages at by Christians complaining that the passages are “taken out of context.” But that is exactly the point. Even religious sourced quotes can be taken out of context and perverted into something that cannot be reasonably defended — though the decision will almost always be subjective to some extent.

    1. So you are admitting that you oppose freedom of speech because it could be misused to promote violence. (You know, like talking about the purpose of an armed populace and the Second Amendment.) Then you say that it is unreasonable to think that anyone will use the same reasoning to suppress freedom of speech by Christians.

      1. Every now and then I have to address the way things in fact are in the United States we live in, and not in the utopian libertarian world I could dream up, given enough time and paper.

        This is probably a bad analogy, but having been in the Army in Europe in June, 1967, I remember very well that when every Arab government in the Middle East was saying it was going to kick Israel’s ass, imminently, Israel took them at their word and went and kicked their ass, first. And most of the non-Arab world cheered them as justified, despite the fact that they were clearly violating the Arabs’ freedom of speech. I mean, all the Arabs had really done was say they were going to kick their ass, while having the means to do it. But the world called Israel’s action “anticipatory retaliation” — retaliating for an attack that was reasonable to anticipate.

        So if you were to say in a convincing way that you intended to kick my ass, I would feel justified in taking steps to see either that your ass was kicked, or that you were constrained from kicking mine, and you could shove your freedom of speech — even if you quoted your bible for godly justification.

        There is a distinct difference between, say, hypothesizing that the U.S. government could use armed force to take our rights, and that we should prepare for that, and saying that tomorrow, anyone who is a patriot and/or godly man should go to Washington with their gun and clean house — if saying so appears to be a credible threat of causing it to happen. Similarly there is a difference between saying that the bible (and thus God) advocates killing gays — an objective observation — and saying that you intend to kill gays, or I should, because God says so.

        The bottom line is, if your speech amounts to a credible threat that you intend to commit aggression against me, then I intend to commit aggression against you. If you express yourself in a defensive way — that you are afraid I am going to commit aggression against you, so you are preparing to defend yourself against me — then we have no problem. Your freedom of speech means nothing in the first case, but everything, in the latter case.

    2. People fail to realize that Canada is a British colony, NOT U.S.A. lite. They adopted the same warped view of free speech that the Europeans have; somehow, you have some sort of human right not to be offended. That notion is simply imbecilic.

  15. It’s cute how people think legalizing gay “marriage” is the end game here. It’s just another step.

    The left has always worked through incrementalism to destroy societal norms and constructs (religion, family) in order to increase government.

    When there are no other structures left, only government will remain.

    The two parent family is on the decline, religious liberty is under constant attack, and here we are eager to hand them another victory.

  16. “The left has always worked through incrementalism to destroy societal norms and constructs (religion, family) in order to increase government.”

    So claims the fascist right, which has always worked through incremental codification of societal norms and constructs (religion, family) in order to increase government.

    1. Societal norms aren’t societal norms without majority support. I thought Leftards claimed democracy as a universal good?

      Or could it be that only works when you’re in charge?

  17. I see the utopian idea that government get out of the marriage game. Marriage has been for thousands of years a way to join wealth , property and even national states. So marriage and government are entwined. For instance the law was not allowed to force a spouse to testify against his/her spouse.
    The offspring of marriage are the legal heirs to property , titles and wealth. bastards were not the legal heirs. So the official recognition of marriage is in real estate law, inheirtance, even the recent gun bill by Schumer.

    So lets deal in reality. Government is involved with marriage.

    The whole idea of gay marriage is to force acceptance and once that is in the law then they can force churches to marry gays. Gays want to feel morally superior or as good as straight marriage. So the have to use the state to force the churches says that gay marriage is good, as good as straight marriage.

    That goes against church doctrine , so it destroys the churches and leaves only the state.

    It is the same as those gun banners says they do not want to take away our right to own guns. Then they suggest laws that make us criminals when we own or use guns. So why believe the just want to stop with the ability to marry? Civil Unions were the same in CA and Mass yet gay activists used the courts to overturn that. Why do gays want to take away the term marriage from straights?

  18. I see no particular reason why government should be involved in marriage at all, either Federal or State. Let it be governed officially by contract. If churches want to perform the ceremony or not, let them choose. It’s not about forcing anyone to do anything, but allowing people to make the choice for themselves. I know that this makes social conservatives nervous, but it’s far better (in my opinion) to put up with the social fallout of gay marriage than it is to deal with an overbearing state imposing the changing views of the majority on everyone else.

    1. You may not see any reason for goverment to be involved in marriage but the reality is that they are and have been for a thousand years.Our law is based on english common law and to get marriage out of a thousand years of law is not practible.

      So the issue has to be dealt with the reality we have not the reality you would like.

  19. “Our law is based on english common law”

    That is nearly as specious as claiming that our law is based on the Bible, despite the fact that most of the Ten Commandments would be unconstitutional if codified by government.

    To be too general, perhaps, common law only counts when something different hasn’t been codified, and in most cases, something different has been. Add to that, that regarding many issues, there was no single “English Common Law,” but several that were peculiar to different regions of that kleptocracy. To pick and choose which ones you want to quote as English Common Law, depending on how it serves an issue, is disingenuous.

    Last, we fought a war (and maybe should have fought a few more) to get away from Anglo-Saxon law. I have no idea how that affects marriage, except to observe that I believe women have a few more human rights now than they had when any of the Saxon common laws prevail, so what they said on the matter a thousand years ago seems only of quaint historical interest.

    1. Nice sleight of hand, there.
      He wasn’t talking about a thousand years ago. Our laws are basically derived from the English laws, that were in force here a bit over 200 years ago. Yeah, they’ve been tweaked a bit, but the founders didn’t just throw away the background history of the colonies when they got down to writing things. The inhabitants wouldn’t have stood for that big a change. and to dismiss the Bible as having no part in our laws just shows you to have some sort of bias going on here. Maybe you should be a bit more direct in what you want to say, instead of taking these bank-shots. You aren’t accomplishing anything except annoying people, it appears. Shooting for annoyance is just a waste of everyones time.

  20. I was wrong to assume that the term common law was understood. Common Law is case law from history. Statutory law is what the state writes. Common law is the law that derived from cases. A lot of real estate law and property law is from common law. There is no one common law but the US law derives form English common law and US common law. That is why stare decis is so important that the decision are consistent with past decisions. It makes it hard to change law directly like getting government out of marriage.

  21. English common law does date back at least to the Norman invasion so a thousand years of case law on marriage and property have been in effect. Weatherman is right that married women had no property rights back 200 years ago That was a change that has been incorporated through statute and then from decades of case law.

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