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  Excellent Same-Sex Marriage Opinion Piece

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You are reading topic "Excellent Same-Sex Marriage Opinion Piece" in forum "Gay Marriages and Unions."

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(Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004, 8:44:00 AM)

Here is a fine discussion of same-sex marriage by Beth Quinn of the Times Herald-Record

I was going to leave the gay marriage issue alone just to save myself some

But then I thought, what fun would that be? Somebody's got to irritate the
self-righteous folks who tell the rest of us how to live, and it might as
well be me.

You know who you are, so get your writing implements ready because you'll
want to damn me to hell by the time we're done here.

For me, there is one central question in the whole gay marriage controversy:
What do you care?

What difference does it make in your own life if two gays or lesbians get
married? It simply mystifies me that you feel threatened by this. What
possible harm could it do in your personal, little life whether the two guys
living at the end of your block say "I do"?

I keep hearing the same pat answer from your prophets of doom - that
allowing homosexuals to marry will "destroy the institution of marriage."

Well I gotta' tell you, a lot of gays and lesbians have been getting married
in San Francisco lately, and so far my own institution of marriage is doing
just fine. I checked. When I heard they were lining up for licenses, I asked
my husband if he felt our marriage was going downhill on account of it. He
just ignored the question and wanted to know what kind of perennials I
thought we should put in this spring.

I took that as a good sign. Perennials are an investment in the future, so I
figure he's sticking around despite what those homosexuals are doing.

So, self-righteous folks, I guess I'm wondering what's wrong with your own
marriages that you feel so threatened by another couple's happiness. Are you
unable to sustain a good sexual relationship knowing that two gay guys are
sleeping together in wedded bliss? Are you unable to have an intimate
conversation with your spouse because you're distracted by the notion of two
women going off on a honeymoon?

Because if your marriage is that unstable, you should stop worrying about
what others are doing and tend to your own problems before your divorce
contributes to the decline of the institution of marriage.

I've given this a lot of thought, and I've completely failed to come up with
ways that gay marriage will have an impact on your life. It won't raise your
taxes. It won't cause the kid who shovels your driveway to quit. It won't
make your laundry dingy. It won't alter the weather. It won't cause your dog
to start passing gas. It won't affect your relationship with God. It won't
cause you to develop a tumor on your head.

Those of you who would talk about grand concepts like society and
institutions and pillars and guideposts and moral fibers and whatnot, I say
this is just your excuse for meddling. And history has shown us that nothing
good ever comes of meddling in other people's affairs. Every time Christians
showed up to mess with heathens, for example, we just ended up with a lot of
unhappy heathens with syphilis and smallpox.

Those of you who would point out that the dictionary definition of the word
"marriage" involves a man and a woman, let me point out that the dictionary
is a living, breathing document that changes as word usage changes. If you
doubt it, look up the word "dot" in a current edition.

We the people get to decide what's in the dictionary. The dictionary doesn't
get to dictate our societal conventions. Your hair isn't going to catch on
fire if the definition of marriage is eventually changed to read, "two
consenting adults" instead of "man and woman."

As for the Bible, which is always the last refuge for those of you who want
to impose your will on us savages, we're not all reading out of the same

More fundamentally, the Bible is not a legal document. If it were, those who
fail to love one another would be rounded up and thrown in jail. The prison
budget would go through the roof what with all the new cells we'd be needing
for the neighbor haters.

I have only this advice to offer those of you who oppose gay marriage: Don't
marry a homosexual.

If you're a man and you don't want to marry another man, for crying out
loud, stick to your guns! That would be a terrible idea. You'd be miserable!
Same for women. Marry someone of the opposite sex if that's your personal

After all, no one's got the right to meddle in your private affairs.

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(Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004, 9:59:00 AM)

Great column! Here's her follow-up (with reader responses):

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(Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004, 1:18:00 PM)

Thanks rlyons for your reply. I wish you had copied the text into your Atkol post, however. When I tried to access the site you displayed they wanted a lengthy sign-up procedure and I am always rather disinclined to engage in such "subscriptions."

Could you "Cut and paste" the article and replies?

Thank you.

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(Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004, 2:10:00 PM)


I didn't run into the same issue you did, so here's the article...

March 01, 2004

Gay marriage issue inspires a movement

By Beth Quinn
Times Herald-Record

If you've been feeling like a lone, sane voice in chorus of unctuous fundamentalists, I've got good news.
There are a lot of us standing in the same section of the choir, and we're starting to make our voices heard.
I know this based on the response I got to last week's column challenging the self-righteous folks who oppose gay marriage. I wanted to know what possible difference it could make in their own, little lives if two people of the same sex got married. After all, no one is ordering them to gay marry if they don't want to.
I expected an avalanche of criticism. Instead, I heard from nearly 150 people who said "thank you for saying exactly what I was thinking." I heard from only four people who opposed same-sex marriage.
My response dovetails with the results of a Record online poll we ran after Bush announced Tuesday that he wants a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. Of the 1,618 people who cast a vote, 76 percent said they oppose Bush on this one.
And then there's New Paltz Mayor Jason West, who started marrying homosexuals Friday. He married 21 gay couples outside Village Hall and plans to keep it up.
No doubt the courts will get involved, especially since his village clerk refused to give out licenses to go with the vows. Even so, he's forced the issue and I could kiss him.
It's kind of like that part in Arlo Guthrie's anti-war song "Alice's Restaurant" about people getting together on an issue: If just one person does something, They that's They with a capital T may think he's really sick. If two people do it, They may think they're just no-account faggots. If three people do it, They may think it's an organization. But if 50 people a day do it they may think it's a movement. And friends, that appears to be what we have here. A movement. Can you imagine?
In case you doubt it, let me share a few of the e-mails I've gotten in the past week from people gays and straights alike who are clearly part of the movement.

I'm 65, married, three children, eight grandchildren, two great-grandchildren. If I have learned one thing, it's that life is difficult and it's the small moments of joy that sustain us. I can't imagine what it's like for gay people not to be able to enjoy the same. Jane

I think our reality check just bounced. It shouldn't concern us what other folks do as long as they're happy and not increasing the crime rate. Danielle

I didn't like it when people meddled in our lives [Italian and Jew], and after 54 years, we are still husband and wife. What could be wrong with wanting a married life? Sandra

The top of my head hurts from holding back my frustration on this issue. Thanks for venting my steam. I couldn't agree more if I were gay myself. Kathy

I don't even care if it's called "marriage" or not. Call it a giraffe for all I care. I would just like my partner and I to have the same rights [not "special" rights] as any other committed, married couple. Donna

Someday, folks will look back on our time and lament about how mean-spirited we are to one another. Bob

Your column got circulated around the University of Toronto computers, being called "excellent and blunt." Up here in Canada, people are more supportive, generally, about this issue. You know, Canada is usually pink on a world map for a reason. Chris from Toronto

I am in my 70s and my partner recently turned 90. I would like to have our relationship acknowledged by the government [which our taxes help support] prior to our departure from this earth. Ted

As a lawyer with experience handling matrimonial matters, I can attest that traditional marriage is not in such a good state of health that homosexuals could hurt it. I agree with your position on this issue. And I, for one, look forward to increased business when gay divorce becomes the new thing in my racket. Howard

As the parent of a young, gay male, I would only hope that he will meet someone who cares enough about him to make a long-term commitment. Don

Beth Quinn's column appears on Monday. Talk to her at 341-1100, Ext. 6305 or at bquinn@th-record.com.


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(Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004, 10:59:00 PM)

Thank you, Katieboy, for posting the column. I hope Quinn is right about this being a "movement."

If I hear the term "special rights" one more time I think I will have a palpitation.....we only want the same rights and freedoms that are accorded to others.....no more and certainly not less.

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(Posted Tuesday, March 09, 2004, 2:30:00 PM)

This Topic has been moved from Forum "General Discussion".

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