Will California deny peoples' rights in November?

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Will California deny peoples' rights in November?

Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 10:40 am

The following is the exact wording of Prop 8 as it appears on the November California ballot:


California Proposition 8: "Eliminates right of same-sex couples to marry. Initiative Constitutional Ammendment."

Eliminates Right of Same-sex couples to marry. Initiative Constitutional Ammendment.
-Changes the California Constitution to eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry in California.
-Provides that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.



The language states "Eliminates right..." because, earlier this year, the California Supreme Court voted to overturn the statewide ban on same-sex marriage and hence made such marriages legal. The passing of Prop. 8 would therefore constitute an elimination of already existing rights of certain people by another group of people (the majority).

A List of companies/organizations/people Against Prop 8:
-Governor Schwarzenegger
-Senator Barack Obama
-Nancy Pelosi
-CA senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein
-Mayors of SF, LA, and San Diego
-Google
-All six Episcopal bishops


In Favor of Prop 8:
-John McCain
-Roman Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus (donated $1 million), Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (donated more than $5 million),
-American Family Association
-Focus on the Family
-National Organization for Marriage

(Yes, meanwhile, the Mormons in Utah are working hard to infiltrate our state with their hoards of cash in order to deny our citizens basic and decent civil rights!!!)

Television Ads against Prop 8:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6dBUCi32c8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxQ6BBdXg78
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBSy5V4t7sI


Television Ads in favor of Prop. 8 being run here in CA:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gE5oOuf_8A
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qoMA_kcRylI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNaHpHl3t8g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=73Q4V8WNF6k


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


My Opinion: Since when did we as a society start VOTING as to whether other people should have certain CIVIL RIGHTS???


My list of arguments against the proposition:

1. It's going to happen eventually. Even if prop 8 passes, there will be an overturning in another 10 years anyway, so stop delaying the inevitable just because you're an old fogie who doesn't want change.

2. The will of the majority cannot impose on the will of the minority. One group of people can't decide the rights of another group.

3. The supporters of prop 8 confuse legal marriage with cultural marriage. They don't realize that you can't argue the law on the basis of cultural preservation. The law doesn't exist to reinforce a particular culture, and changing the legal definition of marriage in no way effects of necessity the various cultural or religious imports of the term.

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

An interesting blog from a Mormon who objects to the Church's involvement in and funding of the proposition: http://signingforsomething.org/blog/

A blog tracking the donations of Mormons: http://mormonsfor8.com/
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Postby Bombadillo » Mon Oct 13, 2008 11:37 am

This is so hard for me personally. I am a convert to the LDS church and my wife is a lifelong member with family ties that go back to the inception of the chuch in the 1830's. I teach our local seminary class for high school students in the early AM and have very serious religious beliefs and I love the church and what it has done for me very much.

That being said, I am sick and tired of the church poking their head into other people's bedrooms. I don't believe that homosexuality is a choice any more than my heterosexuality was a choice for me (it wasn't). Marriage is good for our society, it is a stabilizing force which has been recognized since before recorded history, and to deny it to any of our citizens is just wrong. Not only that but Prop 8 is not about any church's idea of marriage it is only about civil marriage, something that I know from experience that the LDS church doesn't pay a lot of attention to, their Temple Marriages being the most important.

Why do they feel the right to interfere so blatantly into other people's lives who are not trying to interfere in theirs? It's bigoted, small, and petty; everything that Jesus Christ stood against in his ministry. It just kills me when I see it because I am thinking that I will be formally leaving the church fairly soon and that is a choice that can potentially tear my family apart.

I'm praying a lot about this, if you have some extra prayers, send them my way.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 11:44 am

Bombadillo, thanks for that very sincere reply. There is a letter on the site I mentioned above from a daughter of strict Mormon parents that describes how the Church's position has also threatened to tear her family apart:

Mara Stewart, Honolulu, Hawaii - Our family is not forever anymore

To the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve:

Gentlemen, my parents are converts to the LDS Church. I was raised in the Church. I was baptized, confirmed, went on mini-missions as a teenager, attended Seminary. I was a good daughter.

When I came out as a lesbian to my parents, my mother was loving and accepting. I was afraid that she would disown me. My father was less than happy, but accepting of the daughter he raised all the same. Despite Church doctrine that says I am a sinner and unworthy because of my sexual orientation, they loved me and I loved them. Our family remained strong and united in the face of adversity.

With the First Presidency’s declaration that Church members must support Propositions 8 in California and 102 in Arizona, that changed. My parents support the Church’s efforts to influence civil law out of fear, not out of love. They support Church efforts to declare their daughter a lesser citizen. That support has ruined our relationship. It has ruined my parents’ relationship with my straight, married sister, who does not believe that Church doctrine should dictate civil law. Our family has been shattered by this.

The Church’s political war against gays and lesbians is not right. It is not just. It is not loving. It is not Christlike. It is hateful, mean, small, and base. The civil right of gays and lesbians to marry according to the laws of their state in no way affects Church doctrine on homosexuality or marriage. The First Amendment guarantees Church immunity from performing same-sex marriages. Temple marriages will not be threatened. The Church loses nothing.

Instead, families are threatened. Families lose. Our family, so important to my father and mother, is falling apart because of this. They are more afraid of the First Presidency than they are willing to support civil rights for all their children. This is wrong. This is in direct opposition to the precepts laid out in D&C 134.

The LDS Church is ripping its own families apart over a war it should never have waged to being with. Gentlemen, I urge you to leave the government of the citizenry to the civil government. Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. Perform and strengthen your own Temple marriages according to Church doctrine and the dictates of your own conscience. Do not try to dictate to the conscience of other men.

Above all, do not rip my family apart in this way. My parents’ decision to support your political campaign is because they believe that you are infallibly correct. In this, you are not. Please, remember the doctrine laid forth at Kirtland, Ohio in 1835. Remove Church support from this civil action.


I was raised Catholic, and though I am no longer so, I still reel at the thought of how much influence a few men in positions of religious power have over the minds and consciences of so many good intentioned people. I do not see how if those religious leaders could only experience first hand the needless disruption and division which their polemics cause that they could not feel swayed to think otherwise than they do.
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Postby Bombadillo » Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:01 pm

I was raised Catholic, and though I am no longer so, I still reel at the thought of how much influence a few men in positions of religious power have over the minds and consciences of so many good intentioned people. I do not see how if those religious leaders could only experience first hand the needless disruption and division which their polemics cause that they could not feel swayed to think otherwise than they do.

The problem with all church leaders, not just Mormons or Catholics, is that when they get to a high enough level within their church they are only around people like themselves. Groupthink sets in and their detachment from any kind or "real" reality or honestly differing opinions becomes profound.

My parents are very liberal and my uncle (my mom's twin) was gay and died several years ago of heart problems. Understandably, any religious group which is intolerant of gays is off the table for them.

My in-laws, on the other hand, are died in the wool Mormons who take anything from the First Presidency as the word of God. To differ with either of these positions is going to alienate someone.

This doesn't even include my wife who was first attracted to my spiritual side (and of course to my raging "hottness" :wink: ) but has told me many times that the church is "who she is" and can't imagine living without it.

This is so heartbreaking and frustrating... :(

So yeah, for me personally this is a little bit more than just a vote on a civil procedure...

P.S. - Thanks for the link, it was good to read about people going through the same issues that I am facing.
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Postby Cerin » Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:54 pm

It's unfortunate that the proposition is worded so poorly. Props of this type should be framed as a question of how marriage is defined. If marriage is defined as the union between a man and a woman, then it isn't a question of gay couples having or being denied the 'right' to marry. Putting it in these terms just plays into the strategy of framing the issue as a discrimination issue, when it is not.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:49 pm

Cerin,

But same-sex marriage IS currently legal in California (since the supreme court overturned a proposition earlier this year). Therefore, the wording of the proposition IS indeed correct from a technical and legal perspective. You can bet that the supporters of prop 8 fought hard to have it worded differently, but they lost that battle because of the current legal status in the state.

Thus, the passing of the proposition would deny rights that are indeed already existing for certain people.

On a side note, I think there is some legal question as to whether current same-sex marriages would actually be voided if the proposition passes. I think I read somewhere that they could not be voided, or that it is a matter of interpretation of the law at the very least, which would make for an odd situation!
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Postby Frelga » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:52 pm

Having met many two-mom family at preschool, school, Little League, summer camp, I really, really cannot justify denying them the same rights as any other family.
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Postby truehobbit » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:53 pm

Bombadillo wrote: The problem with all church leaders, not just Mormons or Catholics, is that when they get to a high enough level within their church they are only around people like themselves. Groupthink sets in and their detachment from any kind or "real" reality or honestly differing opinions becomes profound.


Has it ever occurred to you that what you consider oh so 'real' is only the result of your group keeping to themselves?

The idea that something is more 'real' just because it's 'different' is, IMHO, plain silly.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:56 pm

Frelga wrote:Having met many two-mom family at preschool, school, Little League, summer camp, I really, really cannot justify denying them the same rights as any other family.


Yes, that's the sad thing... I find that those most often in favor of the proposition are simply ignorant. Most of the people against it say to themselves "well, if I vote yes then this person/friend/acquaintance that I know could actually be denied the right to marry because of my vote." And that is what usually makes most people stop and think. When you look at the dynamics of this issue, it really is very similar to segregation, interracial marriage, and other cultural oppositions that arise out of ignorance of the other side.

Everyone wants to protect their own little group, but you can't do that at the expense of other groups or people.
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Postby Frelga » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:58 pm

jadeval wrote:Yes, that's the sad thing... I find that those most often in favor of the proposition are simply ignorant. Most of the people against it say to themselves "well, if I vote yes then this person/friend/acquaintance that I know could actually be denied the right to marry because of my vote." And that is what usually makes most people stop and think.


Absolutely. I will admit, this was what brought me around, some years back - meeting these families and seeing that they were bound by the same love and care as mine. The opponents of gay marriage often paint these relationships as something exotic and deviant, using images of leather-harnessed men. The reality is, most gay couples are as vanilla as most heterosexual couples.
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Postby The Nameless Thing » Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:20 pm

I already voted Yes (absentee). In 2000 the will of the people,61 to 38, was made known by Prop 22. Our law making (instead of law interpreting) court subverted this.

Prop 8 is leading in the polls by an even greater margin.

I support civil unions, but marriage….sorry. I choose to remain part of the un-enlightened majority.
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Postby portia » Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:53 pm

If marriage were a civil contract performed by a secular offical, to which a couple could add a religious ceremony if they wish (without altering the status of their marrige), we would not have this issue.

I will freely admit that calling an arrangement between a same-sex couple a marriage gives me a jolt. But I can't find a rational reason to allow a same sex couple all the same rights as a marriage, but refuse to call it a marriage. "If it walks like a duck. . . "

IMO, it will be hard for the proponents of Prop 8 to argue, if it passes, that existing same sex marriages should be void. The ex post facto principle is pretty strong in this country (for criminal law, it is part of the Constitution, of course) so it will be an uphill battle to convince a court that a status that was properly and legally entered into at the time can be voided after the fact. And, yes, that would make a strange situation.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:06 pm

The Nameless Thing wrote:I already voted Yes (absentee). In 2000 the will of the people,61 to 38, was made known by Prop 22. Our law making (instead of law interpreting) court subverted this.

Prop 8 is leading in the polls by an even greater margin.

I support civil unions, but marriage….sorry. I choose to remain part of the un-enlightened majority.


Yes, everyone has their own personal and cultural views of what marriage is, and everyone should have a right to their own idea of marriage. But should your particular cultural idea of marriage be the one which the law coincides with? Shouldn't the law be independent of such cultural or religious ideas? Shouldn't it be the basis for civil rights upon which all specific groups, cultures and religions can freely pursue their own ideas and practices?

If a group of Hindus moved gradually into a small town and built a temple and started attending in droves, then would the otherwise majority caucasian population have the right to suppress the practice of Hinduism in the town because they want their small-town culture preserved? Yes, the practice of Hinduism DOES affect the town, but is that a basis for suppressing it?

I just think the law shouldn't be tied up with culture. It's not tied up with culture. Various cultures coexist under the laws of this country, don't they?

And besides, how do you feel about the fact that the vast majority of people under 30 are fine with same-sex marriage? What about the blindingly obvious fact that in 10 or 20 years all this will be something to laugh over? I mean, can you imagine, in 25 years we'll all be sitting around saying "Can you believe that we actually thought back then that same-sex couples shouldn't get married??"
Last edited by jadeval on Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:26 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:18 pm

portia wrote:If marriage were a civil contract performed by a secular offical, to which a couple could add a religious ceremony if they wish (without altering the status of their marrige), we would not have this issue.


You are talking about the fact that a ceremony must take place after the obtaining of a license and then the license signed? I've never been married so I'm not very familiar. Yeah, I agree, but in any case it shouldn't matter because the fact that the marriage officiator and the ceremony itself need not be of any particular kind (religious, secular, etc.) means that the whole process is potentially secular or potentially religious. As a whole, it's not bound to any particular culture or religion.
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Postby Meril36 » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:34 pm

Oh c'mon, this is California we're talking about. Anti-prop 8 is gonna ride Obama's coat-tails to victory.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:48 pm

That's the spirit. But you never know, the polls have been close and CA is a much more diverse state than MA. But yes, it could be a big win win for liberals this November... fingers crossed.
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Postby Lee~ » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:57 pm

Meril36 wrote:Oh c'mon, this is California we're talking about. Anti-prop 8 is gonna ride Obama's coat-tails to victory.


I hope that's true. From the viewpoint of a MidWesterner, CA is one strange state, but it's also a beacon of the left and liberalism that provides a balance to the right wing Bible belt states. It would feel like the Nation was standing on end if CA passed prop 8.

Anyway, I personally am very grateful to CA, since you folks helped paved the way for Medical Marijuana. It's on the ballot in MI, and I am going to be very happy to vote yes on it.

I'll cross my fingers that your prop 8 will NOT pass, if you folks will cross your fingers that MI's prop 1 WILL pass. We gotta dealio?
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Postby Cerin » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:59 pm

Frelga wrote:Having met many two-mom family at preschool, school, Little League, summer camp, I really, really cannot justify denying them the same rights as any other family.

A civil union law could accord them the same rights as any other family. This isn't about the rights accorded to families; it isn't about hospital visitation, or inheritance rights, or insurance, or any of that stuff. The gay community wants to co-opt the word 'marriage', so that it no longer refers solely to the union of a man and a woman. This is all about a word and the concept it defines; a reading of the California court decision makes that absolutely clear. This is about the word 'marriage' and nothing else. It is about removing the meaning of a word from the lexicon because that meaning doesn't validate the gay community's life experience. To heck with the millions of heterosexual couples whose life experience that meaning does validate; they don't matter. Their life experience doesn't matter, because it makes gay couples feel inferior, and we just can't have that, can we? That, in a nutshell, is the essence of that ridiculous court decision. I hope California citizens have the sense to overturn it.
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Postby TheEllipticalDisillusion » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:26 pm

I can't imagine that this proposition is simply about the WORD when the reality is that the RIGHTS will disappear along with the WORD. If the proposition said "we are going to change the NAME of gay marriage to civil union" then I'd buy your argument.
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Postby Lee~ » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:31 pm

Marriage should have never been legislated by the government in the first place. If you feel so strongly that marriage is a contract that exists only between and man and a woman, then it falls under religious jurisdiction and should be stricken from the books altogether. No State recognized marriage in CA-only civil unions.

But if you insist that marriage be a contract confirmed and recognized by the State, then you have to allow people who are of the same gender to be accepted and recognized by the State as being married as well as a heterosexual couple. This is a civil issue, because it is barring people access to State recognized marriage based solely on their sexual orientation. You're right in that it has nothing to do with contractual obligations, access to financial securities and medical next of kin status. But what it does have to do with is marginalization of a minority population by the State.

So, is "marriage" a State defined legal term or is it a religious sacrament?
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Postby Cerin » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:37 pm

TheEllipticalDisillusion wrote:I can't imagine that this proposition is simply about the WORD when the reality is that the RIGHTS will disappear along with the WORD. If the proposition said "we are going to change the NAME of gay marriage to civil union" then I'd buy your argument.

TED, if you read that court decision, you will see that it is all and only about the word 'marriage'. The gay community isn't satisfied with having the rights of marriage in a civil union, they want the word 'marriage' along with the rights. That's why the suit was brought in the first place. The suit challenged the idea that gay unions with all the attendant rights of marriage could fairly be called something other than 'marriage'.

If the proposition was worded, 'we are going to change the NAME of gay marriage to civil union', the gay community would fight it just as hard. It's a pity it isn't worded that way, because that wording gets much closer to the truth of the matter.

I urge you to read that court decision; you will see that what I say is true.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:48 pm

Cerin wrote:
Frelga wrote:Having met many two-mom family at preschool, school, Little League, summer camp, I really, really cannot justify denying them the same rights as any other family.

A civil union law could accord them the same rights as any other family. This isn't about the rights accorded to families; it isn't about hospital visitation, or inheritance rights, or insurance, or any of that stuff. The gay community wants to co-opt the word 'marriage', so that it no longer refers solely to the union of a man and a woman. This is all about a word and the concept it defines; a reading of the California court decision makes that absolutely clear. This is about the word 'marriage' and nothing else. It is about removing the meaning of a word from the lexicon because that meaning doesn't validate the gay community's life experience. To heck with the millions of heterosexual couples whose life experience that meaning does validate; they don't matter. Their life experience doesn't matter, because it makes gay couples feel inferior, and we just can't have that, can we? That, in a nutshell, is the essence of that ridiculous court decision. I hope California citizens have the sense to overturn it.


Oh blah blah blah. "To hell with heterosexual couples whose life experience that meaning does validate"?? Are you freaking kidding me? Apparently your logic doesn't apply to people under 30 who have no problem with same-sex marriage. In 25 years your children will be talking about how their parents' generation was just like the generation that thought interracial marriage was wrong. What will you have to say for yourself then? There's no denying it... you will be a fossil just like my grandparents' generation that once thought black people shouldn't be with white people. Do you want to be a fossil? Just asking...
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Postby Cerin » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:55 pm

TED, here is a link to the California Supreme Court ruling:

link



If you don't have the time or inclination to read the whole ruling, here is a NYT article that explains that the case was all about the use of the word 'marriage'. California already had a law guaranteeing same-sex couples the rights of marriage, so pretending this is about rights is a ruse and a lie.

link
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:59 pm

Yes, a civil union in CA is basically the same as what marriage used to be defined as before the court ruling this year.

But so what? If same-sex couples should have the same rights under the law as opposite-sex couples then they should also be called the same under the eyes of law. Legal marriage doesn't affect religious or cultural marriage, and the law should see the two kinds as indistinguishable in value and hence in name. There's really no arguing it.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:02 pm

And you know what's funny about this proposition... for the supporting side it's really "do or die" because if they lose then there's no going back. But even if it DOES pass then it won't really matter because it's not a matter of if but when... the amendment will eventually be overturned and people are just fighting the inevitable. That in itself should convince them to just give it up, no?
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Postby TheEllipticalDisillusion » Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:02 pm

Cerin, thanks for the links. I read the times article because the ruling is way too long.

Why does Prop. 8 say "eliminate the rights"? Does this mean it will eliminate the rights afforded by the domestic partnership law?

As to the question of the word, I don't see what the big deal is. I'm not married, but I am straight. I don't feel any ownership of the word marriage, then again, what do I know? I am a coastal moderate, so my views are definitely not shared by the majority of this country.
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Postby jadeval » Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:05 pm

TheEllipticalDisillusion wrote:Why does Prop. 8 say "eliminate the rights"? Does this mean it will eliminate the rights afforded by the domestic partnership law?


Because the court ruled in May that Prop 22 was unconstitutional and so same-sex marriage IS LEGAL in CA as we speak. Therefore a yes on prop 8 is a vote against existing rights. But no, prop 8 wouldn't eliminate domestic partnership (=civil union). It would eliminate the existing RIGHT TO MARRY (right to a marriage license and certificate).

Everyone talks about how the judges defied the voters. What about CONSTITUTIONALITY??? Does that mean anything to anybody?

The reason why Cerin's argument is moot is because it doesn't matter whether there is "no content" to the word marriage vs. civil union. Same-sex couples WANT THE RIGHT TO OBTAIN A MARRIAGE LICENSE... therefore that is a civil right they are demanding. Whether it's "actually" a right depends on who you ask, but we wouldn't go back and ask white people during the 50s whether it was a right for black people to drink at the same fountain or not. Whether something is a right depends on who you ask.
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Postby Cerin » Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:16 pm

TED wrote:Why does Prop. 8 say "eliminate the rights"? Does this mean it will eliminate the rights afforded by the domestic partnership law?

No, it doesn't mean it would eliminate the rights afforded by the domestic partnership law, but uninformed voters could certainly come to that conclusion, couldn't they? That's why they've worded it that way, to fool people into thinking that there are actual rights on the line, and to fool people into thinking that this is a civil rights and discrimination issue. It is not a rights issue; it is an attempt to re-define 'marriage' to eliminate the meaning 'the union of a man and woman as husband and wife', and thereby the significance of that concept, from the language, because acknowledging the significance of that concept offends the gay community; it represents something they cannot experience, and if they cannot experience it, then it can't be important, and it shouldn't be acknowledged or celebrated.
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Postby TheEllipticalDisillusion » Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:24 pm

I wonder what word that gays can take that won't bother straight folks who want to own a word.
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Postby Frelga » Mon Oct 13, 2008 9:07 pm

Cerin wrote:To heck with the millions of heterosexual couples whose life experience that meaning does validate; they don't matter.


I am straight, married, and, jade, over 30, thank you very much. And as many times as Cerin and I have been around that particular bush, I am still helpless to understand what is so upsetting about this.

If there are indeed millions of upset couples, something I doubt very much, well, they are free to be upset. If the only way they will be satisfied is to prevent other couples from enjoying the same privileges they do without taking a thing from their own lives, then, well, I don't feel they are owed any consideration. In the same way, millions of Muslims (and some Christians and Jews) are entitled to their views on what is a decent attire for a woman, but I don't worry about them as I walk around bareheaded.
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"You start running they'll never let you stop. You stand up, push back... Can't say no forever right?"
―Steve Rogers, Captain America: The First Avenger
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Frelga
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