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August 8th, 2010
03:22 PM ET

Opinion: Same-sex marriage will hurt families, society

Editor's note: Bishop Harry R. Jackson Jr. is senior pastor of Hope Christian Church in Beltsville, Maryland, and founder and Chairman of the High Impact Leadership Coalition (HILC). He shares his thoughts on traditional marriage in "The Black Pulpit," a weekly series of opinion pieces that explores faith in the black community. CNN's "Black in America: Churched" premieres October 14.

By Bishop Harry R. Jackson Jr., Special to CNN

The institution of marriage is unique. It is the one institution that binds women and men together to form a family, and this serves broad societal purposes.

In California, a U.S. District Court Judge last week overturned Proposition 8, the California Marriage Protection Act. It was passed in November 2008 by California voters to recognize "only marriage between a man and a woman."

The majority of Californians, including two-thirds of the state's black voters, have just had their core civil right - the right to vote - stripped from them by an openly gay federal judge who has misread history and the Constitution to impose his views on the state's people.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christian Science • Culture wars • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Opinion • Politics

soundoff (233 Responses)
  1. Selfish Gene

    The bible sets up a class society. It has been used to control the heathen masses for centuries. WAKE UP.

    August 9, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
    • Guest

      "I do not feel any contempt for an atheist, who is often a man limited and constrained by his own logic to a very sad simplification." ("Babies and Distributism" The Well and the Shallows)

      August 9, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Guest

      You said – "I do not feel any contempt for an atheist, who is often a man limited and constrained by his own logic to a very sad simplification." ("Babies and Distributism" The Well and the Shallows)"

      Gullibility and credulity are considered undesirable qualities in every department of human life-except religion...Why are we praised by godly men for surrendering our "godly gift" of reason when we cross their mental thresholds? – Christopher Hitchens

      August 9, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
    • Guest

      @David Johnson-

      If I have spoken evil, give testimony of the evil: but if well, why strikest thou me?

      August 9, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Guest

      I'm sorry. Cheers!

      August 9, 2010 at 7:59 pm |
    • One Whose Name Means Beloved of God

      @Guest

      You are very eloquent–I appreciate that. But generally speaking insulting others (as "limited" in their mental faculties, I believe?) is considered a very, very minor form of evil.

      Don't smack people and expect them to turn the other cheek. Even Christians rarely do that.

      August 12, 2010 at 1:17 am |
  2. Cindy

    Those of you who spout verses from the Bible, esp the Old Testment should do your research and find out what is really going on and why before you speak. As for God, you can deny Him, call Him a fairy tale, a myth, take His name out of the schools, out of Christmas, whatever you want. But you know what? He will always be there, you can't get rid of Him. And unfortunately, when those of you who have those comments and beliefs, die, you will find out how horribly wrong you were and you cannot say you were not told, or warned. And there will be no second chance for you.

    August 9, 2010 at 3:40 pm |
    • SadPanda

      Better be good or he is gonna getcha!

      He is gonna find out whos naughty and nice!

      wait i get it now. Santa is god!

      I must say, as always the athists are winning in the logical world regarding this topic. And the religious are refusing to admit they are wrong despite all the clear cut reasoning in the world. Sounds about right.

      August 9, 2010 at 4:01 pm |
    • SadPanda

      It gonna be lights out. Like a lightswitch. Too bad your not gonna even notice how wrong you were your whole life.

      and i meant Atheist not athist in that last post.

      August 9, 2010 at 4:05 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Cindy

      Even though you have chosen to be a Christian, you are still at risk. Suppose the one true god is the Islamic god. The Muslims believe Christians are infidels and are destined for hell. They believe Christians should convert to be saved.

      There are over a thousand different Christian denominations. Many of these, believe only they will be saved. Did you pick the right one?

      So Cindy, you could very well find yourself at that big barbecue, you mentioned. Cheers!

      August 9, 2010 at 4:21 pm |
    • Guest

      @Cindy

      There is only one choice: to live for self or to live for God.

      Fr. Gabriel of Saint Mary Magdalen (Divine Intimacy)

      August 9, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
    • Selfish Gene

      The Flying Spaghetti Monster shall smite thee!
      Prove me wrong.

      August 9, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Cindy

      You said, "As for God, you can deny Him, call Him a fairy tale, a myth, take His name out of the schools, out of Christmas, whatever you want. But you know what? He will always be there, you can't get rid of Him."

      Actually Madalyn Murray O'Hair did a pretty effective job of taking god out of school prayer. I'm just sayin...

      August 9, 2010 at 8:27 pm |
  3. Ciaran

    As with most anti same-sex marriage arguments this is incredibly feeble but yet so unyielding opponents can’t see reason.
    Some of the main arguments include religion; the bible says same-sex marriage is bad! The bible actually makes very little reference to homosexuality. Granted the few references it does have are against it and it is referred to as an abomination but in those days "abomination" meant unclean. To touch the skin of a pig made you unclean, as did eating shellfish. The bible has a lot more to say about matters such as adultery but our society doesn't stigmatise people who commit that. Opposite-sex couple can remarry as many times as they like. Rush Limbaugh for example is very anti same-sex marriage but he recently got married for the fourth time! The sanctity of marriage indeed.
    Religion should also not be referenced for the pure and simple fact that not everyone is a Christian and the United States is a secular country. Why should atheists, moderate Christians, and people of other faiths be bound by what the Bible says?
    Another argument is the ancient definition of marriage should not be changed. Marriage never began as a union of love it was a property contract. A father would give his daughter to a family in exchange for negotiated assets, how romantic! Marriage has evolved over the centuries and it will continue to do so.
    Others claim the point of marriage is to procreate and since same-sex couples cannot do so they should be denied the right. What about women past the menopause and infertile people? By that same logic they should be denied the right as well. Same-sex couples can and do have children in their family. Denying those families the right of marriage excludes them from countless legal rights and protections. Denying the right of marriage to certain families damages those families, including the children.

    August 9, 2010 at 2:33 pm |
  4. Gay Catholic

    Jackson says, "The majority of Californians, including two-thirds of the state's black voters, have just had their core civil right – the right to vote – stripped from them by an openly gay federal judge who has misread history and the Constitution to impose his views on the state's people." What he doesn't say is that the "majority" was 52% to 48%. Equal protection under the law is blind to color, religeon, ideology, GENDER, disability status, orientation, etc. Ever seen the blind-folded statue of justice with a sword in one hand and scales in the other? That is our allegory for the embodiment of law in this country. That is our history.

    August 9, 2010 at 2:06 pm |
  5. Gay Catholic

    P.S. PLEASE tell me you don't believe in the literal interpretation of Genesis and the whole some thousand year timeline. I've learned it's best not to reason with the unreasonable.

    August 9, 2010 at 1:54 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Gay Catholic

      You said, "PLEASE tell me you don't believe in the literal interpretation of Genesis and the whole some thousand year timeline. I've learned it's best not to reason with the unreasonable."

      Who doesn't believe in that? Isn't it written in the bible? Isn't the bible the inerrant word of god? My god man! You are on a slippery slope. Save yourself man!

      August 9, 2010 at 4:12 pm |
    • dalis

      @ David Johnson – The inerrant Word of God doesn't have to mean the inerrant LITERAL Word of God. The whole question about the Days of Creation is so needless anyway. In the original Hebrew, the word translated as "day" only really means "period of time", and a period of time could be eons. As our scientific knowledge of the origins of the universe, the earth, and life develop, it's remarkable how well what we know fits the creation myth of the culture of nomadic herders living thousands of years ago. The truth doesn't have to be an either/or proposition.

      August 11, 2010 at 4:05 am |
  6. Gay Catholic

    Hey, CatholicMom. Regarding 'choice'... you may want to reference His Holiness Pope John Paul II when he said, 'being gay IS NOT A CHOICE'. Therefor, I am as God made me. I know I am blessed, as are my loving relationships. I don't need you to spread your hate. I don't need your permission, and I don't need or seek your approval for what I know to be right. Thank you. Please take your train wreck elsewhere. As for law? The first complex system of law, codified: Assyrians. Way before Jesus, the Bible, and all that. Look it up. Peace.

    August 9, 2010 at 1:44 pm |
    • David Johnson

      Careful Gay Catholic! CatholicMom is apparently the spokesman for the Vatican. She is obviously infallible in matters of faith, since she is constantly correcting even the most religious of commenters.

      You could find yourself excommunicated. Cheers!

      August 9, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Hi, Gay Catholic,
      Reread Hanna’s post. She implied she ‘chose’ and I was asking her to clarify because I know that a person does not chose to be gay.

      Furthermore, I think gay people are special in so many ways and they have a great cross to bear because of it. My best friend was gay and I met all of his gay friends and they were wonderful, sensitive and intelligent persons. Most handsome, too, and creative like he was.

      They were all especially kind at my best friend’s funeral and they all hold a dear spot in my heart yet after all these years….It is a hard thing to watch someone you love die of HIV/AIDS.

      The funeral was held in the Catholic Church where he was a member and where he received the Sacraments regularly. All his brothers and sisters were there; yes, all 6 of us.

      August 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  7. Jay

    The thing that gets me is that people who talk about America and Voting Rights don't seem to understand the way America works. The people of California had the right to vote. The Judicial Branch of the American government is there to make sure the laws that are passed by the legislature and voted on by the people are JUST and CONSTITUTIONAL. With enough signatures and votes we could get crazy things passed like "People with brown hair aren't allowed to drive" or "Only men are allowed to be Senators" but that doesn't mean that those things are JUST and CONSTITUTIONAL. I'm sick of people talking about how things are bad because of the bible. If you can use imaginary, made-up beings and stories to justify taking away rights then I can too. Mr. Spock and Kermit the Frog say that people who believe in magic beings that live in the sky are morons and shouldn't have the right to marry. Hmm, maybe I should get THAT on the ballot.

    August 9, 2010 at 1:28 pm |
  8. David Johnson

    @CatholicMom

    That gift from God, is slowly putting Him out of a job. The gaps in the god of the gaps that god is filling is closing. Soon, He will have nothing to do. It is good he has carpentry skills to fall back on.

    August 9, 2010 at 12:59 pm |
    • peace2all

      @David Johnson

      LOL !

      August 9, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  9. CatholicMom

    Bob,
    Science is a very wonderful tool, a gift from God.
    Science has already proven that 'two women' or 'two men' are not equal to 'one man and one woman'.

    August 9, 2010 at 10:56 am |
    • Bob

      How are they not equal? I'd agree that physically they're not equal, one side has a duplicate set of equipment if you will.

      However, if you're going to claim anything else, I'm hoping that you have some sort of unbiased, peer reviewed study to back up your claim. And surely you would, because only morons or dishonest people say things that they cannot prove and/or know nothing about.

      August 9, 2010 at 12:16 pm |
    • Selfish Gene

      Science clawed its way out of the dark ages, against EVERY attempt by the church to subdue it.
      Just ask Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler

      August 9, 2010 at 2:25 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @CatholicMom

      MONDAY, June 7 (HealthDay News) - When compared to teens of the same age, adolescents raised by lesbian parents are doing just fine socially, psychologically and academically, new research finds.

      Not only that, they have fewer social problems, and less aggressive and rule-breaking behaviors than other teens.

      The nearly 20-year study has followed 78 teens since their lesbian mothers were planning their pregnancies, and concluded that these children "demonstrate healthy psychological adjustment." These findings stand in contrast to what some vocal opponents of gay or lesbian parents might have expected.

      August 9, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      You admitted, Bob, they are not equal; then you say one side has a duplicate set of equipment. Well, how does THAT work? Even a farmer knows he doesn’t need duplicate sets of equipment. Two wagons, no tractor…two tractors, no wagon, no…it won’t do.

      August 9, 2010 at 7:55 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @CatholicMom

      You said, "You admitted, Bob, they are not equal; then you say one side has a duplicate set of equipment. Well, how does THAT work? Even a farmer knows he doesn’t need duplicate sets of equipment. Two wagons, no tractor…two tractors, no wagon, no…it won’t do."

      As far as raising children, the fact the same gender partners have the same equipment, is irrelevant. As far as gay marriage, it is none of your business. It does not effect you. You state the obvious, as if you actually made some sly point.

      August 9, 2010 at 8:22 pm |
    • TammyB

      What kind of equality are you talking about? Strength? Will? Intelligence?

      August 10, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      TammyB,
      How would you test without discriminating?
      p.s.
      I answered your earlier post but it is waiting moderating......if it doesn't come through, I will try to break it up into pieces as that seems to have helped get portions through, if not the whole message...sorry...

      August 10, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
    • TammyB

      Yeah, what's up with that? I have about 4 to 5 comments still awaiting "moderation"! I don't mean to be disrespectful to anyone's religion, but I'm beginning to think David Johnson is correct and we should all start praying to the Moderator Gods (this really is a joke!)! I await your answers/comments and hopefully we will ALL be able to see ALL of our comments and such!

      August 10, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
    • Toby

      I respect your right to your own opinion, but you do not have a right to play loose with the facts. You made the statement that "science is a gift from God." Now, I must ask you exactly how you know this to be true? What evidence do you have that we can test, observe, and attempt to falsify? Perhaps science is a gift from Baal, Zeus, or Santa Claus. It is not my intention to be sarcastic here, but your statement is simply absurdity at its finest, and an outstanding display of ignorance of science and the scientific method. Peace.

      August 10, 2010 at 10:34 pm |
  10. bostonjim

    Well, Nate, I can think of a few specific reasons to disagree with the Pastor. To start with, he is raising the traditional nuclear family onto a pretty high pedestal. For better or worse, I think worse, the nuclear family has already taken a pretty severe hit to its integrity in this country. There are many children being raised withoutthe benefit of both parents, even in states where there is no gay marriage. I suppose the ideal is for kids to have two loving parents. Life is not ideal. Meanwhile, extensive studies of children of same-sex marriages show no ill effects when compared to their "traditional" counterparts. I will ignore his various religious arguments, as the law has already established these are not sufficient to justify a change in law. He speaks of counselors and the like having their beliefs infringed upon. Well, I imagine in roles such as these you are often confronted with people whose lives you do not agree with. You find ways to still do your job, or you find another one. He argues that the right to vote was stripped away- I think that issue has been covered extensively, but let me reiterate- the Constitution overrules the will of the mob, and it is a judge's job to interpret the Constitution. There is no law that states you get whatever you want just because a slim majority approves it. That's just a few arguments, I suppose I could go on.

    August 9, 2010 at 9:09 am |
  11. Bob

    Harry Jackson, perhaps you should read our constitution.

    Quite simply it doesn't matter how many people VOTE for something, if it's against the constitution it's not allowed.

    I find it odd that a black man would forget about segregation was repealed (although the majority of voters were for it at the time). How do you respond?

    Furthermore, please link the study that shows that "society will suffer" because of gay marriage. Oh wait, there isn't any? It's based on what a 2000 year old book written by illiterate sheep herders observed?

    August 9, 2010 at 8:31 am |
  12. John

    GOD EXISTS EINSTEIN BELIEVED IN A PERSONAL GOD HE SAID IT HIMSELF: "When staring death in its eyes, faced with the subtle elegance and order that fills the universe, I cannot but conclude that these laws of nature I so admire could not have produced their greatest creation, humanity, on their own. It seems to me that for an intelligent person to then deny the great cosmic purpose of our species is an exercise of bigotry. [...] It is with reluctance that I approach this topic, for I have for years vigorously denied the existence of these higher realms that the enlightened among us have chosen to call God. Yet it now seems self-evident that mere science, without the guiding hand of religion, cannot grasp the vastness of the unobservable universe." – Albert Einstein

    August 9, 2010 at 7:20 am |
    • Bob

      There are smart people who believe in God. There are stupid people who believe in God.

      There are smart people who do not believe in God. There are stupid people who do not believe in God.

      Who said what or who thinks what is pointless. What matters is fact. God either does exist or doesn't exist.

      And until proof exists, I personally see no reason to accept any God. The same way I don't accept leprechauns, dragons or smurfs.

      August 9, 2010 at 8:34 am |
    • Bob

      This is probably a hoax that seems to have originated in some run-of-the-mill religious journal and shows the desperation of people who seek to reconcile religion with science. They often turn to arguments from authority that aren’t even valid.

      August 9, 2010 at 10:48 am |
    • David Johnson

      I thought this might interest you:

      Religious thought is an attempt to find an out where there is no door. – Albert Einstein

      The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible – Albert Einstein

      It seems to me that the idea of a personal god is an anthropological concept which I cannot take seriously. I feel also not able to imagine some will or goal outside the human sphere. – Albert Einstein

      I am a deeply religious nonbeliever...This is a somewhat new kind of religion. – Albert Einstein

      Morality is of the highest importance – but for us, not for god. – Albert Einstein

      Science...has been accused of undermining morals – but wrongly. The ethical behavior of man is better based on sympathy, education and social relationships, and requires no support from religion. Man's plight would, indeed, be sad if he had to be kept in order through fear of punishment and hope of rewards after death. – Albert Einstein

      It is of course a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal god and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it. – Albert Einstein

      I cannot imagine a god who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own – a god, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty. – Albert Einstein

      August 9, 2010 at 12:47 pm |
    • Guest

      @Bob -just another "run of the mill" journal

      “The Einstein I knew [personally]. He would have been looking up humbly, in rapturous amazement at the harmony of law revealing everywhere a superior intelligence."
      ~From: Raymond J. Seeger, "Einstein, Cosmotheist" in The Journal of the American Scientific Affiliation, 34 (March 1982): page2 42-44 (http://www.asa3.org:16080/ASA/PSCF/1982/JASA3-82Seeger.html; viewed 26 September 2005):

      "Cosmotheism", a religion based on white racialism, pantheism, eugenics, and National Socialism.

      August 9, 2010 at 1:18 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Guest,

      Are you citing the so-called journal, "Perspectives on Science & Christian Faith" from the ASA? Why would you trust such a source?
      An organization with the name "American Scientific Affiliation" whose statement of Beliefs is primarily about G d and Christianity not science seems to me to be inherently deceptive. Whether deceiving themselves or their audience open to debate.

      August 10, 2010 at 12:47 pm |
  13. Glynn

    maybe the bishop can relate to this quote:

    Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere
    - Martin Luther King Jr.

    August 9, 2010 at 4:46 am |
    • Guest

      St. Augustine said, "An unjust law is no law at all." I would say, "Far worst than the unjust laws are the persons who would vote to elect Judges who support unjust laws."

      August 9, 2010 at 11:46 am |
  14. Glynn

    Just a couple reminders for the bishop:

    Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man"
    - US Supreme Court, Loving vs VA 1967

    "Government has no business imposing some people's religious beliefs over others.
    Especially if it denies people's civil rights."
    - Mildred Loving, June 12, 2007 [Loving vs VA 1967]

    "I like your Christ. I don't like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."
    - Mohandas Ghandi

    August 9, 2010 at 4:18 am |
    • Guest

      I believe in equality for everyone, except reporters and photographers.
      ~ Mahatma Gandhi

      August 9, 2010 at 12:16 pm |
  15. Nate

    I just noticed how late it is so I can't stay to continue the conversation, but come on people. You all are better than this. Practice civility when discussing topics. Have a good night.

    August 9, 2010 at 2:59 am |
    • PeaceMan

      Have a good one.

      August 9, 2010 at 3:06 am |
  16. Nate

    First off, why do you people agree or disagree with this bishop?.. All I've gotten out of the messages left so far is that a couple of conservative individuals agree with the man based on religious views and everyone else has no other opinion than "so how can I insult these individuals that I disagree with?". Can anyone answer me in a civil way?

    August 9, 2010 at 2:51 am |
    • HardQuestionsUaskYes

      So everyone who disagrees should simply say "I disagree with this bishop" and then walk away?
      If they did that it wouldn't be a blog, it would be a poll, I think. But it certainly sounds like a much calmer way of doing things.
      I'm sure you might find people disagreeing with you about the "insult" part. Some of them may not have meant it that way.

      August 9, 2010 at 3:05 am |
    • Selfish Gene

      I disagree with the Bishop for multiple reasons.
      1. I know gay men and women. I am still straight, still married, and still love my son. Even though I grew up around them.
      2. Not long ago, my parents worked for the civil rights of blacks. I am still white even though they went to my school.
      3. My parents were divorced, not because of gays or blacks, but because they changed from teens to adults and no longer get along.
      4. I went to church with white and black patrons. Some of them could have been gay. Most were good people. But I don't believe in their fairy tales, so I don't go anymore.
      I'm still white, I'm still straight. I'm still an atheist. I'm still a working dad. I am home every night and I will raise my son to accept other people as long as they accept him.

      I question the Bishop's motives. How many gay people are responsible for the baby momma drama in HIS community. He should point the finger at the hip hop drug addict spinning wheels foodstamp mentality this is prevalent in urban neighborhoods.

      August 9, 2010 at 2:19 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Selfish Gene,

      You said….
      ‘I will raise my son to accept other people as long as they accept him’. What about the neighbor who might hate him and persecute him?

      31
      Do to others as you would have them do to you.
      32
      For if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.
      33
      And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do the same.

      August 9, 2010 at 3:57 pm |
    • Selfish Gene

      I saw right through the BS in sunday school at a very young age. I embraced the scientific method.
      Science flies you to the moon. Religion flies you into buildings.

      August 9, 2010 at 5:49 pm |
    • Guest

      Worship yourself and leave the flying to us.

      August 9, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  17. Nate

    start insulting one another or each others beliefs right off the bat. Can't we have a civil discussion here?

    August 9, 2010 at 2:36 am |
    • BreathingCalmly

      I agree. So. What would you like to talk about, Nate?

      August 9, 2010 at 2:42 am |
    • Bob

      You cannot have a discussion with the absence of reason. Viewpoints on faith are ones without evidence and therefore reasonless.

      How do you debate the statement "This shouldn't happen because I don't feel it's right."

      You can't. I think that's a reason for the vitriol.

      August 9, 2010 at 9:16 am |
    • absenceofreason

      @Nate

      Bob's right. You can't have a discussion with me. I'm busy. I just washed my hair and I don't want it to get dirty.

      August 10, 2010 at 1:16 am |
  18. Nate

    I really don't understand why so many of you

    August 9, 2010 at 2:30 am |
    • Breathless

      Yes? Yes?

      lol

      August 9, 2010 at 2:35 am |
  19. Love415Peace

    @ Hum Bled, you can shower us with your ignorant words all you want, the fact of the matter is the proposition was thrown out to ensure that ALL have civil rights including the right to marry whom ever they choose!!!!!

    P.S.

    There is no God! and if he/she was real, I wouldnt be a follower of someone that condones murder, slavery and genocide. Religion is the sole ideology that fuels war and hate i.e. look at yourself, you are trying to make a argument about why peoples rights should have been taken away!?!?

    August 9, 2010 at 1:03 am |
  20. Alex

    I'm just going to lay it out there, because it needs to be done.

    Our nation is based on the separation of Church and State. That means that, among other things, people have the right to do what they want, as long as it does not directly harm another person. And no, that doesn't mean 'harm' as in "well, it 'harms' me that that young guy is dating that really old lady!" Personal disgust at another person's lifestyle is not 'harm'. Shooting someone in the head...that's different. Yelling 'fire' in a movie theater places people in bodily harm during the ensuing rush out the exit doors. But barring that sort of thing...well, you're free to do what you like. Including do things other people consider 'sins'. That's why sodomy's not illegal anymore – because it was unconstitutional to penalize it, and, as it became possible for people to look past their initial distaste and calmly consider it as a legal issue, they found themselves forced, by the logic of the US constitution, to strike down those laws.

    So, Hum Bled and similarly-minded individuals, please – by all means – feel free to think that gays and lesbians are going to burn in Hell. That is entirely, 100% your prerogative. Kowabunga. But the law in this country (notwithstanding wherever it is that you, Hum Bled, think the concept of law originated) is such that no god or god-belief has a say therein. And so, there is no imperative (for no credible scientific evidence exists suggesting that developmental problems necessarily result fin children raised in same-sex marriages any more than they do in any other form of marriage, and anyone who says different is selling you something) but for the religious – and thus legally inadmissible – one, for ruling that same-sex marriage be illegal. And, conversely, there is a very real imperative, the potential denial of a legal privilege to an entire section of population that other members of the population enjoy, for making same-sex marriage freely available.

    Put another way, in this country, like it or not, we don't let religion dictate government policy. And, similarly, we also don't discriminate. Or at least, that's the theory – the practice, sadly enough, has long fallen short of the ideal.

    August 9, 2010 at 12:34 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.