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March 25th, 2013
10:10 AM ET

My Take: Will gay rights infringe on religious liberty?

Editor's note: Marc D. Stern is the general counsel of the American Jewish Committee and a contributor to the book, "Same-Sex Marriage and Religious Liberty."

By Marc D. Stern, Special to CNN

(CNN) - It was inevitable that the debate over same-sex marriage would have a strong religious component. This is partly because it involves such questions as the interpretation of biblical passages that, on their face, condemn homosexuality as a sin. But it also involves squaring the authority of ancient texts with modern theological understanding and developments in biology. And of course, the importance of love and human autonomy as religious values should be considered.

Those issues surfaced in the various briefs filed in the Supreme Court, some of which are written as if the court must inevitably choose one religious point of view as the winner and the other as the loser. This is a false choice. The Court can make all winners, or at least avoid allowing one side to suppress the other's deepest beliefs.

The U.S. Supreme Court has not been asked - nor could it possibly answer - the question of what God or the Bible thinks about same-sex marriage. Religious groups are divided on that question, some supporting and others opposing same-sex marriage. And even if the religious viewpoint were clear, it should play no direct role in deciding whether the Constitution requires the states or the federal government to recognize same-sex marriage. Our government should not act to further one or another religious view of contested moral issues.

FULL STORY
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Gay marriage • Gay rights

soundoff (379 Responses)
  1. pathetic

    Chilipepper
    Therein lies the issue. I made no argument for or against legal rights for any type of union in the secular United States or within any legal context. However, having stated my own beliefs resulted in comments containing the words biggoted and zealot. It cant be had only one way. My being negatively judged for my personal beliefs and faith is the definition of biggotry within the context of your reply.
    This why my rights are infringed upon.

    March 29, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Oh, bullish!t. Nobody's stopping you from spewing your bigotry (and that's how it's spelled, moron).

      March 29, 2013 at 4:41 pm |
    • counter

      Warning. The spelling police man is out trolling .And the bigot card was played again.

      How quaint.

      Vulgar to boot. Or is it vulger .. gee I am not sure . 😉

      March 31, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • frespech

      The Real Tom,
      FYI when you are being critical of someones spelling always double check your own post first.
      "Oh, bullish!t. Nobody's stopping you from spewing your bigotry (and that's how it's spelled, moron)."
      What is that word following Oh, in your quote?

      April 17, 2013 at 10:39 am |
  2. pathetic

    The real tom
    Zealot? Hardly. However, you illustrate my point with very little effort on your part.

    March 29, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Yes, zealot. Thanks for playing.

      And yes, it took no effort on my part at all. You are proud of yourself for teaching your kids that others who are different are lesser beings.

      Good job, mom/dad.

      March 29, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
  3. WASP

    you can choose which religion to follow or decide to follow none of them; however being gay isn't a choice you are born that way.
    given this doesn't stop people from lieing to themselves and "pretending" to be straight...................until years later after being miserable they finally come out of the closet.

    March 29, 2013 at 9:40 am |
  4. Adevilson

    Yes, because they will limit even more the ability of bigots to discriminate!

    March 29, 2013 at 7:43 am |
    • Gave Them Up

      What do you gots against bi's?

      March 29, 2013 at 9:27 am |
  5. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    March 29, 2013 at 6:19 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      March 29, 2013 at 9:14 am |
    • Really?

      "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things"

      That's why the data, has shown that atheists have happier and healthier lives than conservative Christians. Your post is built on a lie!

      March 29, 2013 at 9:21 am |
    • Saraswati

      Jesus, please stop posting this thousands of times with the word "LIAR" misused and in all caps. It makes you look as ignorant as the original poster.

      March 29, 2013 at 9:30 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Ummm... I think repeatedly chasing after Jesus looks pretty silly too.

      March 29, 2013 at 9:34 am |
    • Saraswati

      @HotAirAce, It just takes a few clicks and I don't feel bad using copy and paste since that's what Jesus is doing. The misuse of the word liar by both Christians and atheists is one of the major contributors to the nastiness of this discussion. Everyone who disagrees with you is not a liar.

      March 29, 2013 at 9:36 am |
    • According to the bible prayer cannot change things

      If god's supreme plan rules in the heavens, then prayer is useless. If you pray for something that's not in the plan it won't happen, no matter how hard you pray. And if you pray for something in the plan, it would have happened anyway even without your prayer.
      If god gives us free will, then no matter how hard you pray god refuses to do anything, like not doing anything for the 6m Jews because that would interfere with Hitler's free will

      March 29, 2013 at 8:46 pm |
  6. Bill

    "It's important to punt the fetus like a football"

    You may be crazy, but that's funny.

    March 28, 2013 at 11:12 am |
  7. Reality

    Only for the new members of this blog:

    See the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

    To make it easy to access the review, simply copy and paste the following website in your browser address window.

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/evolution/Gay-gene-deconstructed.html

    The opening paragraph:

    "Most scientists who study human s-exuality agree that gay people are born that way. But that consensus raises an evolutionary puzzle: How do genes associated with h-omose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?"

    March 27, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
    • Salero21

      That's like saying that cirrhosis of the liver is the cause of alcoholism.

      In the beginning God Created them Male and Female period.

      March 27, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
    • clarity

      Prove it Salero21.

      March 27, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
    • End Relgon

      Why is there, to this day, not a scrap of good evidence for this god or Adam or any of the horseshît which is the foundation of the psychotic delusion you call religion?

      March 27, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
    • Science

      Hey 21............................................ Still going backwards (creationists too)move forward and read a map maybe ?

      Best Map Ever Made of Universe's Oldest Light: Planck Mission Brings Universe Into Sharp Focus

      Mar. 21, 2013 — The Planck space mission has released the most accurate and detailed map ever made of the oldest light in the universe, revealing new information about its age, contents and origins.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130321084221.htm

      March 28, 2013 at 9:37 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      salt shaker, If you feel that god is omnipotent, then didn't it create homosexuals? So if god created them why discriminate?

      March 29, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
  8. retief1954

    Gay rights and gay marriage infringe on anyone's religious liberty? Not one tiny bit. In America, people are free to practice their faith. Gay, straight, doesn't matter. Anyone can observe their faith without interference.

    March 27, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
    • S.R.

      Gay rights... rights...
      rights to what? To continue to sin, to exchange the truth for a lie? to be given over to a debase mind?

      Why are we turning a moral issue into a civil rights issue?

      For God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, His Word stands true now, as it did back then. Why then are so many people refusing to listen to the truth, when the truth is the only thing that can set us free?

      I'm a sinner, I'm not perfect, but I have looked to Jesus Christ and through Him I have changed for the better, so can you. I reach out in love to anyone, I will not condemn you for what you are doing, only do my part in leading you to the right direction. We reach out in love, for Christ seeks to save those who are lost.

      So I plead with you, repent, let us repent for we all fall short, but praise God through Christ we can get back up again and be saved.

      It's not too late, Christ is waiting for you.

      May the blessings of the Lord be upon your life each and every day. In Jesus Precious Name. Amen.

      March 28, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Stayinthecloset

      If we are to take morality out of the gay rights topic, then lets also take morality out of siblings getting married, or cousins, or even mothers and sons or father and daughters. Just because two concenting adults want to form a bond doesn't make it right. I can't wait for states to have the authority to grant gays the right to marry. Then I would hope to see lawsuit after lawsuit against the states for not letting a man marry his sister. This could become a very slippery slope. We should all just stay on solid level ground.

      March 28, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
    • WASP

      @S.R.
      black rights... women rights...
      rights to what? To continue to sin, to exchange the truth for a lie? to be given over to a debase mind?
      -Why are we turning a moral issue into a civil rights issue?
      -For God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, His Word stands true now, as it did back then. Why then are so many people refusing to listen to the truth, when the truth is the only thing that can set us free?
      -I'm a sinner, I'm not perfect, but I have looked to Jesus Christ and through Him I have changed for the better, so can you. I reach out in love to anyone, I will not condemn you for what you are doing, only do my part in leading you to the right direction. We reach out in love, for Christ seeks to save those who are lost.
      So I plead with you, repent, let us repent for we all fall short, but praise God through Christ we can get back up again and be saved.
      It's not too late, Christ is waiting for you.
      May the blessings of the Lord be upon your life each and every day. In Jesus Precious Name. Amen."

      yeah people used the same arguement to attempt to prevent equal rights for minorities and women..............we all see how that turned out.
      we won, you bigots lost.
      oh one more thing your idea of a god has nothing to do with this.

      March 29, 2013 at 6:39 am |
    • pathetic

      I posted this in another discussion but believe it is applicable here. I feel that descrimination is is a two way street. See below:
      This issue, like the majority facing our nation, is political game playing. The fact is "marriage" is biblical as a covenant between one man and one woman, under God. The fact that the federal government brought this term into issues of law is immaterial to its origin and intent. The government has chosen to bring the biblical union of marriage into play both now and in the past. Call gay marriage whatever you like. However, it will never be marriage in the eyes of God. Give federal rights or not. It doesn't change the fact that legalizing gay marriage changes nothing in terms of its true and spiritual meaning. Man cannot change this. However, in terms of equality, do not ever deem it inappropriate for me to have my own beliefs. I will never support gay marriage in terms of its violation of my faith. I will never teach my children to embrace gay marriage and accept it has ok. I will also teach my children to love thy Neighbor accepting that all people are born of the flesh and into sin. I will teach my children to respect people on their own merit. I will teach my children not to PUSH our beliefs on others just as I am offended when others attempt to push their beliefs on me. A difference of thought, beliefs, and morals is a right in the USA, and if I or my family is asked about our beliefs we should be able to answer without fear of recrimination, the same for anyone. I believe that the borrowed term of marriage in the context of legality is immaterial and has no affect on me or my belief of its true meaning and intention as it was created.

      March 29, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Blah, blah, blah. Nobody cares what you believe as long as you aren't allowed to deny equal rights to others on the basis of some religious belief.

      Go break your arm patting yourself on the back for being such a good little zealot. Gays will get married and 50 years from now, you'll be dead and gone and nobody will look back on this episode as anything more than a blip on the radar screen. You silly sod, gays make up less than 10 % of our population. Do you really think this is going to change so much? It isn't. It's just evolution. Get over it.

      March 29, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Chilipepper

      Everything you have just said does not apply to the secular United States, and as such, is dismissed with predjudice on your part.
      Teach your children as you like. It has zero to do with secular laws in in the US, and as marriage is a right under the law, your religion will not be considered in the question of equality of all citizens, whether you personally approve or not, pathetic.

      There is a reason for separation of church and state. This is a good example of it.

      How does gay marriage impact your religios liberty? Not at al. How does it impact your bigotry? Your post says it all.

      March 29, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  9. Muzak

    "Will gay rights infringe on religious liberty?"
    No. Religious liberty is about someone's right to practice their religion. Religious liberty is not about someone demanding the entire nation follows their religious-based morality laws. Gays and lesbians marrying have no bearing on the right for someone to practice their religion. If I marry my partner through a state-sanctioned rite, my marriage doesn't affect you. It doesn't affect your entrance to the Heaven you believe in. It doesn't affect your "salvation." You will still go to church, you will still believe as you do, you will still be filled with the "Holy Spirit." Are you afraid God will not be able to recognize you in the crowd when he sorts through the Good and the Bad because too many of us gays and lesbians will be around you? Do you have no faith in God to work his plan out accordingly? What are you afraid of? That God will crumble the USA for its excessive sins? But, you'll be going to Heaven, right? So, what do you care? Life your life, have your church-sanctioned marriage that is also sanctioned by the state, raise your kids, and some will be gay or lesbian, do your thing and in the end have some faith that your life will go uninterrupted, that you will have your salvation even in the wake of gays and lesbians marrying, and that you lived YOUR life as best as you believed you were supposed to, instead of worrying about MY life and how YOU believe I should live it.

    March 26, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • Atheist, me?

      My are you selfish. A selfish person loves to do a lot of wrong things because pride impairs judgement and intelligent thought.
      Sit back and look at your statement. Do you notice how many singulars you used? I, you, me, yours, mine, that is the reason you classify yourself as gay n blame your parents for what all doctors agree is neither congenital or psychaitric. It is your own choice.
      I used to think I lusted after women for nothing. When I began to allow
      "I love my neighbor as myself" dominate my thoughts I was able to fight the inordinate lust.

      March 26, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Akira

      How does gay marriage infringe on your religious libery, Atheist me?
      Answer this for me.
      How does gay marriage impact your right to practice your religion?

      You also infered much from his post; you attributed behavior not in evidence from his post...
      And as Muzak was speaking about his own experience, did you expect him to use the royal "we"?

      March 26, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Atheist me.............What the fcuk are you talking about? What are you, an English teacher? As far your statement "congenital or psychaitric. It is your own choice." That is also total crap. I don't remember getting a questionnaire asking about my s3xuality.
      For a person who isn't gay, you sure think you know a lot about gay people.

      March 26, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
  10. Ann

    Listen people – for once and for all!

    NO ONE IS GOING TO FORCE A CHURCH TO MARRY GAY COUPLES. That's a religious decision.

    It's not that complicated!!

    March 26, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • Akira

      Keep shouting it out, Ann! SO many people do not know what separation of church and state is!

      March 26, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
  11. GonzoG

    It's according.

    Does the particular Religion feel that it has a Religious Duty to Enforce Biblical Law on persons who are NOT members of their sect?

    Then YES.

    Does the particular religious community feel it should be consulted by the Legislature or Courts regarding acts they consider "Sinful"?

    Then YES.

    You have YOUR religious beliefs and I have MINE. Don't smack me over the head with YOUR BIBLE and I won't SMACK YOU BACK.

    DO WE HAVE AN AGREEMENT?

    March 26, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
  12. Jill

    I do believe it will infringe on religious liberties IF the federal law dictates that all religious groups must allow all types of marriages in their respective churches, synagogues, mosques, temples, etc. Doctrinally, this would be impossible for some faiths to do, as many believe marriage is ordained of God and between one man and one woman only. A change in the federal law may facilitate secular, civil weddings and still protect religious freedom, but it will infringe upon religious liberty if groups are required to abide by a definition of marriage they fundamentally disagree with.

    March 26, 2013 at 11:22 am |
    • Akira

      The SCOTUS will not do that as there is a clear delineation between Church and State that they will not cross.
      They are deciding the civil aspect of it, which certainly does not infring on anyone's religious freedom.

      March 26, 2013 at 11:44 am |
    • GonzoG

      That will not happen, Jill.
      SCOTUS will not demand religious organizations perform marriages for persons they deign to be "sinful" anymore than it would try to force a Synagogue to hire a Catholic to fill the role of Cantor.

      This is for CIVIL purposes ONLY. Taxes, survivorship, inheritance, adoption, etc.

      March 26, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Bill

      It is galringly obvious that you are too stupid to realize that g a y marriage has existed in multiple states for years and not one church has ever been forced to perform or recognize a g a y marriage.

      March 26, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
  13. Cal

    Will gay rights infringe on religious liberty?

    No. Other people "living in sin" does not affect what you do in your church, other than inciting you to protest. Many sins are legal under the law. If you believe it is a sin don't do it, protest to make it illigal if you must, but how can you say it infringes on your rights if it is legal?

    March 26, 2013 at 9:44 am |
  14. Gave Them Up

    Your representatives pretend you are rich.

    March 26, 2013 at 4:57 am |
    • clarity

      Yawn

      March 26, 2013 at 8:46 am |
    • Gave Them Up

      A pretend yawn shows up.

      March 26, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • Gave Them Up

      Time for the group pretend yawners to make an appearance.

      March 26, 2013 at 10:38 am |
    • Akira

      Our representatives pretend they aren't.

      March 26, 2013 at 11:47 am |
    • End Religion

      more yawns for bethany

      March 26, 2013 at 8:23 pm |
  15. Donna

    There are plenty of deeply religious people, including Christians, who have no trouble supporting equal marriage rights. Opposing the change towards full marriage rights is actually infringing upon the religious liberty of may people who deeply have faith that God has no problem with it every bit as much as those who feel that taking down the barriers infringes upon theirs.

    March 26, 2013 at 1:32 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      wrong. g.ays getting married has no effect on the religious.

      March 26, 2013 at 2:28 am |
    • Saraswati

      Donna stated it was an equal amount of infringement either way – not how much. Seems like a good point to me.

      March 26, 2013 at 7:26 am |
  16. Foul-tempered mutant sea bass, sadly without with a fricking laser on my head

    Tomorrow and Wednesday, Prop 8 and DOMA go before the Supreme Court. Expect some Christian rage as the inevitable decisions get handed down in June.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      Forget about the topic. What kind of fu'cking name is that?

      March 25, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
    • Dr. Evil

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bh7bYNAHXxw&w=640&h=360]

      March 25, 2013 at 10:46 pm |
  17. Atheist, me?

    Hawaii
    I guess the moron here would be you in this case. You of all people should know that misguided anger restricts judgement. In your case it is causing you to think my name Nii is a blog name when I have specifically told u that I couldn't possibly be referred to as formerly called Nii.
    Oh well guess the google did not go well for you. lol
    I think you need anger management along the lines of
    "I love Nii as myself" (repeat as many times as would help you calm down and think!)

    March 25, 2013 at 10:21 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @formerly Nii

      And you are still unable to back up any of the assertions you made on page 2. I find it interesting that you chose not to actually respond within the same thread, where your evasions are clearly laid out. You're dishonest, a coward, and merely interested in spouting off whatever you want without any challenge. You're pathetic.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:25 pm |
    • EJR17

      Our laws are not Roman laws.
      You may certainly play on Google all you wish; whatever it is you think is the "aHA! Gotcha! law is irrelevant; what matters is that here, IN THE UNITED STATES, another country's laws do not apply, and that gay people will eventually win the same exact civil rights as their straight counterparts: the right to be wed.

      How is gay marriage impacting your life at all, Atheist, me?

      March 25, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
  18. SAAB

    what is religious liberty?

    March 25, 2013 at 9:12 pm |
  19. Quest ion

    Are they a special or protected cla-ss?

    Are these people an oppressed minority?

    Are they disadvantaged people who need that much help?

    Are they being persecuted like the black people were in the south?

    Are they being persecuted like the aboriginal inhabitants of the land were once?

    If they're born like that (as they allege), does not that means theirs is not a normal condition?

    Does their abnormal condition prevent them to perform in school or in the workplace like a disability?

    Can two men or two women reproduce naturally and normally by themselves alone even if they're healthy and not sterile?

    If they can't and clearly they can't even if healthy and not sterile, then their condition is not normal?

    Just because their condition and lifestyle is abnormal; does the fact alone means that it requires the intervention of SCOTUS vs. the rights of the States?

    Do otherwise normal and healthy people, who are married but unable to reproduce, deserve to be declared a special and protected cla-ss as these abnormal people wants for themselves?

    Just asking!

    ??????

    March 25, 2013 at 8:29 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      A bunch of bull sh'it questions.

      Being gay is not abnormal.
      Yes they are born that way.
      Yes they are discriminated against
      Having children is irrelevant. There are straight couple that cannot have children.

      Equal rights are just that. Equality for ALL MEN AND WOMEN.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:36 pm |
    • Quest ion

      Are you a bull or a cow?

      March 25, 2013 at 8:38 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Why do you pose your "questions" with your conclusions already in them ?

      March 25, 2013 at 8:41 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      What difference does that make. I'm married (17 years), wife, 2 kids.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:42 pm |
    • clarity

      They say there are no stupid questions; but you sure are trying hard. Of course, you're not trying to learn anything, otherwise they wouldn't reek of your preconceived ideas about the matter.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:44 pm |
    • EJR17

      Quest ion: how are allowing gay marriage infringing on your personal freedoms, or infringing on your right to religious liberty?

      March 25, 2013 at 8:53 pm |
    • EJR17

      "Can two men or two women reproduce naturally and normally by themselves alone even if they’re healthy and not sterile?"

      The procreation argument cannot be taken seriously. States do not inquire whether straight couples intend to bear children, or have the capacity to have children, before they are allowed to marry. We permit marriage by the elderly, by prison inmates, and by persons who have no intention of having children.

      "Just because their condition and lifestyle is abnormal; does the fact alone means that it requires the intervention of SCOTUS vs. the rights of the States?"

      It is not abnormal to them; only to you. And if they are denied equal civil rights as the rest of the population, yes, it IS a SCOTUS case.

      "Do otherwise normal and healthy people, who are married but unable to reproduce, deserve to be declared a special and protected cla-ss as these abnormal people wants for themselves?"

      There is nothing abnormal about straight couples OR gay couples.
      Gay people desire the same rights and priveledges as any other citizen of the United States. Their sex lives are not germane.
      It wasn't that long ago since Loving vs. Virginia. Equal rights for all. Period.

      March 25, 2013 at 9:04 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      my fiance and i are in our early 40s. we don't have any children and don't want any. love children, but love handing them back to their parents when they start crying, then going out all night. so not sure we'd fit your definition of "normal". i'm actually getting a vasectomy for my birthday. so no children for me. should we be allowed to marry when we clearly aren't going to procreate?

      straight against hate!

      March 25, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
    • EJR17

      Of course you should marry, bootyfunk; congratulations on your upcoming nupitals and Happy Birthday. (Lol)

      March 25, 2013 at 9:39 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Bootyfunk...............Who suggested the birthday present? I got a pool table for my birthday. Different set of balls.

      March 25, 2013 at 9:45 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      thnx EJR17! i got myself a gem!

      but of course i was asking Question, since he describes people as "normal" that are procreating.

      March 25, 2013 at 9:45 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      hahaha! i did. i don't like my girl having to take birth control. she hates it and does it anyway. we definitely don't want to switch to condoms, but nothing else so reliable. there's a waiting period after you get snipped, but after that you're shooting blanks! can't wait. my fiance and i are from big families, so we can visit nephews and nieces anytime we want. kids just don't fit into our lifestyle. we travel a lot and kids make that much harder. and many more reasons. i have heard one horror story about vasectomies that has me nervous, but i try not to think about that, haha. i know friends that have had them and no troubles. i definitely don't want to be sad in my pants. 😦

      March 25, 2013 at 9:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Interestingly, several states allow marriages (heterosexual) between close relatives with a requirement that the couple must be well beyond child bearing years. Clearly in these states marriage is not all about procreation.

      March 25, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Bootyfunk................Don't worry, you'll be fine. You got a good head on your shoulders and a good woman to be with. Congrats to you, your future wife and nieces and nephews because they'll get more gifts for birthdays and holidays!

      March 25, 2013 at 9:56 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @tom...............What state allow relatives to marry? Let me guess, Mississippi?

      March 25, 2013 at 9:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Actually, Mississippi is a state where first cousin marriage is illegal. California, New York and Florida are the most populous states that allow it. I counted 22 states that do allow it.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:06 pm |
    • EJR17

      Exactly how close can they be related, Tom? First cousins?

      March 25, 2013 at 10:13 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @tom........I live in New York. I need to ask my wife some questions to be sure. 🙂

      March 25, 2013 at 10:15 pm |
    • Chick-a-dee

      Marriage is for the purpose of companionship and procreation. Many states require the marriage to be consummated within 72 hours or it is invalid and can be easily annulled. The Church may find a marriage invalid if the husband and wife entered into the marriage with the intent of avoiding procreation and/or using artificial birth control. While this is only one of the reasons the marriage may be found nul, it is the one most pertinent to this thread. Elderly couples may be past the age of childbearing but to create a valid union their intent must be to accept the creation of life should they receive the gift of fecundity. An infertile couple may not be able to bear children but the marriage is valid as long as they are open to the gift of life and do not artificially interfere with conceiving. If two parties are unable to procreate because they are of the same gender they do not meet the basic requirements for the form of the sacrament. They are unable to create a marriage. Sacraments are gifts from God defined by God. The Church has no authority to change the Sacrament.

      Marriage in western Europe and the countries that were created from their colonization is a sacrament of the Catholic Church which just happened to be made into a civil contract so Henry VIII could declare his valid marriage to Catherine of Aragon invalid after the Pope refused to make an affirmative finding for Henry's request for inquiry as to the invalidity of the marriage. He wanted a divorce so he could marry Ann Boleyn (and an additional six women) in his quest to sire a son. Henry broke from Rome and declared himself the head of the church so he could stamp his feet and get what he wanted. Protestants were all to happy about this because they also wanted to break from Rome and his was a handy way for them to validate the unions they wanted to create outside the Church. Then we had people decide to change the rules to suit themselves. Now we have people wanting to change the rules to suit themselves again as fallout of that 16th century disobedience. Have fun with fixing the mess ya'll made.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Chic a dummy..............You cant be serious. That is the biggest bunch of crap I've ever read. I expect you to be the first to jump out a window when the scotus overturns prop 8 and doma.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:39 pm |
    • EJR17

      And once again, the marriage we are talking about is not a religious definition.
      What is pertinent to this conversation, and what the SCOTUS is ruling on, are civil rights enjoyed by all in our SECULAR United States.
      At the risk of repeating myself, because obviously, some do not understand the intent of what is being talked about, namely CIVIL rights:
      The procreation argument cannot be taken seriously. States do not inquire whether straight couples intend to bear children, or have the capacity to have children, before they are allowed to marry. We permit marriage by the elderly, by prison inmates, and by persons who have no intention of having children.
      There simply is no reason not to allow gay couples the equal rights they deserve under the 14th. No reason not to allow them to be legally wed.

      Additionally, marriage is OBVIOUSLY not a requirement for procreation, given the number of out-of-wedlock children being born each year.
      This is also not impacting church weddings at all, either, as the large amount of people getting married by other means attests.

      No reason to disallow gay marriage. None. Denying any citizen of the US a civil right is wrong. This is why it shall be overturned, one state at a time, until it IS legal in the US.

      March 25, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
    • ..

      Chick, who cares about what the church thinks? We're talking about secular civil rights. Do you possibly think that everyone who has never been married in the RCC isn't actually married at all? How silly.
      Let the RCC dicatate marriage withing its walls. Has no bearing on the rest of society.

      March 25, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      chick, almost everything you said is wrong. if you get married in a church without a gov't issued marriage license - you're not married. you can get married in a courthouse without a priest. g.ays can consummate the marriage too. the church has ZERO authority - same with your invisible sky fairy.

      March 26, 2013 at 1:44 am |
    • Saraswati

      What "special" right is anyone requesting?

      March 26, 2013 at 7:28 am |
    • Quest ion

      So what's next then?

      If this perversion is tacitly approved by the SCOTUS; what will the approve next, marriage between first line relatives?

      Will they condone in the future other perverts to marry an animal?

      March 27, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
    • Bill

      "Will they condone in the future other perverts to marry an animal?"

      Yet another dunce who does not understand the concept of mutual adult consent.

      March 29, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • The real Tom

      "The Church may find a marriage invalid if the husband and wife entered into the marriage with the intent of avoiding procreation and/or using artificial birth control."

      My word, but you're stupid, Chick. The church has no standing in determining whether a marriage is legal. NONE. I can't even believe someone as ignorant as you are earns enough money to pay for internet access.

      Gays make up less than 10% of the entire population. Get some perspective, idiot.

      March 29, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
  20. Bootyfunk

    marriage is a legal device, not a religious one.

    get married in a church with church approval but WITHOUT a gov't issued marriage license = not legally married

    get married in a courthouse without church approval but WITH a gov't issued marriage license = legally married

    you can add ritual and ceremony to a marriage, but it's not necessary. marriage is a legally binding contract between two people. and that's how it started. it was to determine how property was passed down, to which child. it was ownership of the woman by the man. the whole fight against g.ay marriage is a fight by the religious to force their religion on others.

    March 25, 2013 at 8:14 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      So very true. That is why there should be zero surprise when the supreme court rules against doma and prop 8

      March 25, 2013 at 8:29 pm |
    • Quest ion

      Then; Do church ministers have or ought to have the absolute Right to refuse to "marry" them?

      Is not that what they'll want next? To force those churches or ministers who refuse now; to marry them by force of law later?

      Shouldn't all churches and ministers refuse to "marry" them?

      If marriage is a matter of the State, then Ministers and churches ought not to marry anyone.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:37 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Quest ion...................... I agree with your last point. Church weddings are just a fancy way of getting married. The church will accept gay marriage because of the money plain and simple. I've said it before, gay money is just as good as straight money. The church does not want to miss out on that gravy train.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:40 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @question

      This is sad. Where have you seen anyone argue to force churches to marry same sex couples? There are liberal churches that would, and already have done it. Marriage is a legal contract between two people, not a pure domain of religion. Making same sex marriage recognized by the government (as it was before DOMA in states that didn't specifically ban it) does not in any way force churches to perform the ceremonies, nor does it force individuals with the power to perform a ceremony to do so.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:41 pm |
    • EJR17

      Ministers can marry whom they wish in their church; if a gay couple wishes to marry in a church, they will find one that performs these services.
      Gay people just want to be able to get married, period; I don't think the church aspect of it all bothers them that much.
      They deserve the same rights as any other human here in the United States that is supposedly guaranteed under the 14th.
      They will eventually prevail.

      March 25, 2013 at 8:50 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      Quest ion wrote:
      "Is not that what they'll want next? To force those churches or ministers who refuse now; to marry them by force of law later?"

      classic slippery slope fallacy. that's like saying ministers are forced to marry blacks. they aren't. there was a story here on CNN not long ago where a church decided to do just that. nothing illegal. no one went to jail or court over it. of course, it did show they were ignorant bigots living in the 18th century, and a lot of people don't want to be associated with idiots like that, so it hurts membership. but nothing illegal. so your argument doesn't hold water.

      why not just separate the two? "marriage" can become a ceremony to celebrate the union, with whatever religion you want there or none at all, just a gathering of family and friends. whatever you want. and it has zero to do with any kind of law.
      then we could have "civil unions" which would be legal contracts – which is what marriage is today. that way people can keep the word "marriage" as the event that marks the couple's union of love. "civil unions" would be what gives you rights to hospital visits, duel tax filing, divorce rights, etc. sounds like a simple way to separate the two. and if you want, they could be combined, as most couples would do. the day of your "marriage" you would fill out all the paperwork for your "civil union", signing the doc.uments just before the ceremony or dropping them off in the morning at the court.

      thoughts?

      March 25, 2013 at 9:31 pm |
    • EJR17

      Very simple: call church weddings "holy matrimony".

      March 25, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
    • EJR17

      And because saying "I got civil ceremonied over the weekend" sounds...awkward.

      March 25, 2013 at 9:59 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Booty....................Like the saying goes. Keep it simple. Marriage is marriage. We have gay marriage in NY. It has ZERO impact on me or my wife.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Quest:

      There are churches now that refuse to marry interracial couples and no one forces them to do anything. Do you even hear about it on the news?

      Idiot.

      March 26, 2013 at 7:29 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.