Thursday, June 28, 2007

Fundamental Rights???

I received this e-mail dialog from a friend who had produced the following e-mail to State Representative Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr:

My friend wrote:
"Dear Representative Puppolo:
Unfortunately, it is more important to support one's self-interest, instead of the common good of society at large! Your decision to abandon your support of the marriage amendment was disingenuous and deeply disappointing. Especially since public office is a privilege for those who are put in power through the trust and will of the people.
Your decision is tantamount to turning your backs on the 123,000 citizens who signed the ballot initiative - the highest number of signatures supporting any citizens petition initiative in Massachusetts history.Everyone who counted on your support will not forget your abandonment and denial of the democratic process."
Representative Puppolo then responded with:
"Thank-you for taking the time to contact me relative to your sentiments to continue the process to amend the Massachusetts Constitution to ban gay marriage.
I want you to know that I respect and value your opinion. As a participant and office holder in the democratic process, it is very difficult for me to argue against the fundamental right of citizens to vote and make choices in our system of government. On the other hand, I am required to observe and respect the protections that are established by a constitutional democracy. I can only ask that you appreciate that this question ultimately brought both of these very fundamental rights into conflict as I contemplated my decision. I did not arrive at my decision easily, as it required my absolute attention and devotion to both sides and their respective concerns. In the final analysis, my conscience could not reconcile a vote to continue a process which would have deprived people of rights and which would potentially also strip away any protection of existing benefits or liberties.
Finally, there will be many other matters, I am sure, that receive your concern and attention during the next several years. As you consider your disappointment in my decision on this issue, I most respectfully request that you consider my views and performance on the whole cloth of issues that will affect this entire district and our Commonwealth moving forward. I look forward to the opportunity to hear from you again on any matter that has your concern, and please know that I hope to be able to work together to make a positive difference in the future."
Sincerely, Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr. State Representative 12th Hampden District State House - Room 146 Boston, MA 02133-1054 Tel: (617) 722-2011 Fax: (617) 722-2238 rep.Angelopuppolo@hou.state.ma.us
I don't know about you, but Rep. Puppolo's response is NOT filled with facts other than his opinions passed off as such.
"In the final analysis, my conscience could not reconcile a vote to continue a process which would have deprived people of rights..."

What??? Where is it said ANYWHERE that taking part in the institution of marriage is a "right"? I have asked this question time and time again with NO response. ANYONE????

"... and which would potentially also strip away any protection of existing benefits or liberties."

O.K., look!! What protections, benefits or liberties do homosexuals not have that heterosexuals do have? We are all on the same page when it comes to both sexual orientations following the same law: You can marry ANYONE as long as it does not involve a partner of the same-sex (or so the law read BEFORE the courts decided to MAKE law regarding marriage three-years ago).

"Finally, there will be many other matters, I am sure, that receive your concern and attention during the next several years."

Translation:

"I am in charge here!!

If you do not like the way I agreed to represent/support your views we can have another e-mail exchange on issues that I will continue to disagree with eventhough I said I would not".

It is basically that simple...no??
Don't worry Rep. Puppolo, I am sure my friend will have many concerns. The only difference is that you are not going to be taking care of these matters for him because you are going to be voted out by a landslide in 2008.
Good luck Rep. Puppolo. You are going to need it.
Scia Ciantee

27 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

“What??? Where is it said ANYWHERE that taking part in the institution of marriage is a "right"? I have asked this question time and time again with NO response. ANYONE????”

I responded Scia. If you look at what I wrote under your post called “Secular Progressive Theology”

Although our constitution does not say explicitly that people have a right to privacy, the courts (in their wisdom) declared we have that right by looking not only at what was actually written in the constitution but also by reading the intents of those who wrote it. Kind of like the separation of church and state. I have however been waiting for your response.

“"Finally, there will be many other matters, I am sure, that receive your concern and attention during the next several years."
Translation:
"I am in charge here!!
If you do not like the way I agreed to represent/support your views we can have another e-mail exchange on issues that I will continue to disagree with eventhough I said I would not".


So… is this the only issue that you and your friend find important? Is it not possible that on another issue you may support this official’s stance? I know you feel betrayed by many of the elected officials that changed their minds/switched their stance on the issue of marriage equality, but bear in mind that just because what you see as just and true, is not always what another rational person will agree with. Like the issue of whether or not marriage is a right. I happen to agree with Representative Puppolo in his belief that this is an issue of equal rights.

I guess it is possible that I could be wrong, but it is just as possible that you are wrong. And I would rather err on the side of freedom and equality than to conserve those rights/privileges for only those that the majority deem moral.

Ken Weaver

3:04 PM, June 28, 2007  
Anonymous omd said...

I am going to say this again and again and again until it gets through peoples heads.

The citizens petition that was defeated was to put the debate about homosexual marriage on the ballot. There was never any guarantee that the initiative would have prevailed at the polls. So the government said "Well, just in case..."

BUT Our Elected Officials Allowed the State Supreme Court to OVERSTEP their authority when the State Supreme Court ENACTED LAW where there was NO LAW.

The court is NOT ALLOWED to do that. They are there to interpret existing law. The Legislature is the ONLY BODY that enacts law.

Our Legislators DID NOT follow the separation of powers checks and balances.

Therefor the enacted by the State Supremem Court law is illegal.

Our elected Legislators also perverted our State Constitution and their oaths of office. They deliberately refused to follow the instructions of the electorate.

Massachusetts is now a totalitarian state run by progressive socialists that have NO regard for the "common wealth" of it's people. I am publically calling for the resignation of each legislator that voted against the petiton being moved to the ballot based upon not sanctioning the State Supreme Court and the repeated violation of their oaths of office.

NOW, had the petition been moved to the ballot THEN AND ONLY THEN would the debate have been about giving homosexual men the right to perform fellatio and anal intercourse on each other and homosexual women to perform whatever sex acts they do to each other. After all this was never truly about marriage it has always been about receiving the government stamp of approval on unnatural sexual acts.

Thus, what our legislature has done is to legalize sodomy. What's next?

Read Romans 1: 18-34.

God IS still speaking and those that believe a victory was won will have a short laugh because all God is doing is allowing us to see the consequences of our wretched & perverted desires. AND before anyone blows a gasket don't forget about the perverted heterosexual sexual practices, among them, fornication and adultry.

Sex and money rule the day. We will regret June 14, 2007 as it has tainted our state and national flag. It may take a few years but just sit back and watch where Cadillac Deval & our government takes us.

1:36 PM, June 29, 2007  
Anonymous omd said...

Corrected error from above:

1. Therefor the enacted by the State Supremem Court law is illegal.

1a. Therefor, the law enacted by the State Supreme Court making homosexual marriage legal is illegal, imho

1:43 PM, June 29, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“I am going to say this again and again and again until it gets through peoples heads.”

Me too!

“BUT Our Elected Officials Allowed the State Supreme Court to OVERSTEP their authority when the State Supreme Court ENACTED LAW where there was NO LAW.”

If there was no law regarding gambling would or would we not be allowed to gamble? If there was no law regarding prostitution would or would there not be prostitutes on the street corners legally? If there was no law regarding street drugs like marijuana/cocaine/meth/etc would we be allowed to get them at the supermarket? And finally, if there was no law defining marriage as between one man and one woman would we be allowed to have same sex marriage as well as opposite sex marriage?

“Massachusetts is now a totalitarian state run by progressive socialists that have NO regard for the "common wealth" of it's people.”

Allowing more rights to the public (if the Supreme Court did make law) is not an act a totalitarian government would do. A totalitarian government limits the rights individuals have until everything done is under state control.

“NOW, had the petition been moved to the ballot THEN AND ONLY THEN would the debate have been about giving homosexual men the right to perform fellatio and anal intercourse on each other and homosexual women to perform whatever sex acts they do to each other.”

Going with that line of thinking; that means that you wanted the right to vote on what people do in their bedrooms? What’s next, making sure that people only have sex in the missionary position?

“Read Romans 1: 18-34.”

Great, another reference to the sky is falling.

“AND before anyone blows a gasket don't forget about the perverted heterosexual sexual practices, among them, fornication and adultry.”

What are the rest of those sexual practices that god frowns upon? Oral sex, fondling, masturbation; are those against god’s law too? Are you one of those people that can’t sleep at night knowing other people are having fun?

“Sex and money rule the day.”

When did they not?

“We will regret June 14, 2007 as it has tainted our state and national flag. It may take a few years but just sit back and watch where Cadillac Deval & our government takes us.”

This sounds awfully familiar. Oh I get it, it’s a reference to the sky is falling again. Why is it whenever anything happens and Christians aren’t happy about it they have to tell us that soon, so very very soon, maybe tomorrow or next week that the warnings of Revelation are upon us? That is so old. 2000 years old. And every person who has spouted that the day of reckoning is upon us has been wrong!

Ken Weaver

9:28 PM, June 29, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Ken,

You asked:

"So… is this the only issue that you and your friend find important?"

Same-sex "marriage" is the second most biggest social issue facing America, right behind abortion. If an elected official stabs the back of his constituents on a big issues as marriage is, he/she deserves to be voted out regardless if you agree or disagree with what they say about other topics.

10:23 PM, June 30, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“Same-sex "marriage" is the second most biggest social issue facing America, right behind abortion.”

In Arizona the largest issue is illegal immigration. I guess with that said, it’s likely that our 2 Republican senators will be looking for new jobs when their elections come around again since they both supported Bush’s bill for amnesty. John McCain was a true conservative a few years ago, but now he’s looking like the guy who wants to keep government control in marriage and abortion. I’m not sure what happened except that maybe he’s hoping the Christian “conservatives” will look to him after Bush’s term is over. But he’ll have a terrible time holding onto his home state. Kyl on the other hand has been the hardcore Reagan conservative, but his popularity has been waning the past few years, which is why he nearly lost his election bid last November. Arizona has started to go back to being “Goldwater” conservatives instead of the Reagan kind, which is why abortion is a non-issue these days. No one marches in front of abortion clinics anymore. The only time you see any at all is on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and even then you won’t see more than 50 or so.

I didn’t know abortion was such a huge issue in Massachusetts. It is seen as such a liberal state. I guess since I’ve held that view for a while I assumed most “Bostonians” were satisfied with the decision.

So, I guess I see your point. Regardless of McCain’s and Kyl’s stance on other issues they won’t get my vote just because of the amnesty bill.

Ken Weaver

4:13 AM, July 01, 2007  
Anonymous omd said...

We are at an impasse.

Look, This is really very simple. God made marriage to be enjoyed by a man & his wife (female) ONLY. That's it.

Now, if your free will is to choose not to believe there is a God, then He will allow you to choose that.

This has nothing to do with me denying anyone having fun.

If you want twist everyone's words to suit your unbelief, have at it.

By-the-Way abortion is very much an issue today. It is the MURDER of a defenseless baby. Just seems our government decided to allow this type of murder.

The sky is not falling but God IS turning our country over to its perverse nature and desires. That's what that passage Romans 1: 18-34 means. He will allow the consequences that come with it too.

TOTALITARIAN -
Characterized by a government in which the political authority exercises absolute and centralized control where the state regulates every realm of life.

This eliminates the people voice,thus becoming a government;

'by the government'
'for the government' &
'of the government'

That type of government does not give rights it takes them away. Certainly you can see that,right?????

8:39 PM, July 01, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“Look, This is really very simple. God made marriage to be enjoyed by a man & his wife (female) ONLY. That's it.

Now, if your free will is to choose not to believe there is a God, then He will allow you to choose that.

This has nothing to do with me denying anyone having fun.”

So let me ask you this; what is your role? You say god made marriage, I didn’t dispute it. But if you are correct why are you subverting god and taking his place to decide that you are the enforcer of god’s will? Did god tell you to enforce his laws? If he did not, you have no business playing policeman for god.

“If you want twist everyone's words to suit your unbelief, have at it.”

Did I twist your words? I certainly didn’t mean to. If you feel that I twisted your words please tell me how I screwed up what you were attempting to say. I am not a mind reader, so I can only assume that what you right is what you mean. However I am capable of misunderstanding the meaning in your words. Please feel free to correct me when I am mistaken, and I’ll do you the same favor. Just please let me know how I twisted/misunderstood your words.

“By-the-Way abortion is very much an issue today. It is the MURDER of a defenseless baby. Just seems our government decided to allow this type of murder.”

I am not one who thinks abortion is good for society omd. But I am a realist (at least on this issue.) Putting a systematic ban on abortion will not end abortion. Do you realize that? If you want to end abortion, make it unthinkable before you make it illegal. I’ll stand with you on that. I don’t like abortion anymore than you but for likely different reasons. I can’t have kids. My Mother took a lot of street drugs while pregnant with me. So I shake my head in sadness when I know this is happening. I don’t think people realize that just being able to have kids makes them so special. I was so angry when I found out I couldn’t have kids and then I see these people that throw around their ability to have one of the greatest opportunities in this world, to have and raise children, to continue a family line. I’ll never know what that feels like and when I see people throw away what could be the greatest opportunity in their lifetime it makes me sick, and I’ll admit it makes me jealous. But making abortion illegal will only make this opportunity of having kids more dangerous. Women instead of going to clean clinics will be forced into 3rd world conditions where that abortion instead of killing one being can easily become 2. And I won’t be a party to that.

“The sky is not falling but God IS turning our country over to its perverse nature and desires. That's what that passage Romans 1: 18-34 means. He will allow the consequences that come with it too.”

I think I may be misunderstanding. My King James Version only has Romans 1 going to verse 32.

“That type of government does not give rights it takes them away. Certainly you can see that,right?????”

Yes I can, but while it would have taken away your right to vote, it also would not have allowed citizens the right of marriage. So you wouldn’t even miss your right to vote if that happened. But I digress; you do not have the right to vote on the rights of others!! Allowing that vote would permit someone to vote on your rights, and my rights. That is un-American, and if you were granted the right to vote on other peoples rights, this would not be a free society and it would not be the United States.

Ken Weaver

11:03 PM, July 01, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Ken,

Your summary of MCcain is right on target.

You said:

"No one marches in front of abortion clinics anymore. The only time you see any at all is on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and even then you won’t see more than 50 or so."

You need to stop depending on the "abortion advocating" media to determine what actually goes on in the world. There are many clinics in MA that see a plethora of protestors marching outside on a daily basis. This, my friend, will NEVER be covered by the agenda driven media in this country.

Abortion is very much a HOT TOPIC that will be as such until the PEOPLE get a chance to vote on it.

8:09 PM, July 07, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“You need to stop depending on the "abortion advocating" media to determine what actually goes on in the world.”

Scia, I think you misunderstand. I wasn’t telling you about the 50 or so because that’s what the news said; I told you 50 or so because for the past 4 years in a row I’ve been there. Not representing either side but as part of my job which is in no way media based.

“There are many clinics in MA that see a plethora of protestors marching outside on a daily basis.”

Wow, that’s interesting, any ideas on why it’s such a huge issue in MA but not in AZ?

“This, my friend, will NEVER be covered by the agenda driven media in this country.”

While working I listen to a local news/talk radio program; 620 KTAR. It is not right or left winged, but some of its hosts are. Darrell Ankarlo is the morning personality and is very conservative, while Pat McMahon is the afternoon host and is liberal on some issues and conservative on others. And when I’ve seen the protestors and heard about it on that program the numbers are accurate. So are the local TV news stations. So I never believe it when I hear statements that our media is so biased. It may be in other communities, but I’ve never witnessed a 1st hand account of the media being so liberally biased.

“Abortion is very much a HOT TOPIC that will be as such until the PEOPLE get a chance to vote on it.”

You should not get a chance to vote on this either. For if you were, you would be voting to either allow or deny a child’s right to life. Or (me playing the devil’s advocate) a person’s right to medical procedures.

Ken Weaver

8:47 PM, July 07, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

You asked:

"Wow, that’s interesting, any ideas on why it’s such a huge issue in MA but not in AZ?"

MA is more liberal and tyranic than AZ and the people are getting fed up with it.

You said:

"...but I’ve never witnessed a 1st hand account of the media being so liberally biased."

You need to get your head out of the sand my friend.

Abortion = Murder. It is that simple.

9:04 PM, July 07, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“MA is more liberal and tyranic than AZ and the people are getting fed up with it.”

I’ve got to visit your state some time; it sounds like so much fun. Anyway what’s there to do in MA? Just can’t be winter, I’m an AZ boy and my blood is way too thin for your cold weather. Oh, and no seafood, can’t stand the stuff.

“You need to get your head out of the sand my friend.”

Scia, you may be right that our media is driven by a liberal agenda, but like I said I’ve never seen it first hand. Haven’t you figured me out that I’ve got to see it to believe it?

“Abortion = Murder. It is that simple.”

Scia I won’t debate you on whether or not abortion is right or wrong or whether it’s a medical procedure or murder. I am not intelligent enough on this issue to be able to defend any point of view. With that said I am not willing to put myself in a position to decide whether or not a child should live or die. I had told OMD once about a situation my Mother-in-law was in when a child came in with an appendix near the point of bursting. That child’s Mother refused any treatment for her son because her religion is against those kinds of medical procedures. Her son died from that appendix bursting and because his Mother refused that treatment. I say that is murder and she should be prosecuted to the fullest extent the law allows. But her religious beliefs are hers to hold. And if my will were to be done her religious freedom would be taken from her just as that child was. It’s easy to see why I’m so conflicted on this issue as well as abortion. I don’t like abortion; I’d love it if it were wiped from the land. But I’m also realistic enough to know that just making abortion illegal won’t accomplish that goal. So please try to understand that while I don’t like abortion, I won’t vote on it, and I will do everything I can to not allow you or anyone else the ability to vote on abortion. Not because I think abortion should be legal, but because my belief in freedom absolute has consequences that abortion may be a part of. So I place my hope that the Supreme Court has the wisdom to decide this in a manner befitting a nation that upholds freedom as its basis and its greatest goal.

Ken Weaver

11:00 PM, July 07, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Ken,

I grew up in Maine and I am practically a Navy SEAL when it comes to dealing with the cold winters we have in MA.

I CAN NOT stand the heat. I HATE humidity and do NOT want to get out of bed sometimes to go to work in July because I hate to sweat when I am not working out, or working in the yard. Sweating is such a DRAG!!! LOL, LOL.

I listen to a lot of conservative radio, but I also balance it out with reading the Boston Globe, a VERY SOAKING WET SECULAR PROGRESSIVE media outlet. The Globe, as you may already know Ken, is owned and operated by the New York Times... I mean, you can't get any more agenda based than that.

Your Mother-in-law's run in with the child is a horrible thing. I think it should be against the law as well and that the mother should indefinately go away for a long time.

What was the end result of the case? Was it reported in the news?

My deep Christian faith and the Words of Christ/God do prevent me from believing in abortion as a choice, but on the other hand my wordly view of life, without interuption or interpretation from scripture, tells me that a life is a life and no one should have a choice to take away life. Wow...I think we can REALLY get into a hot button issue with this one. No Ken, please do not persue this one. I am already having enough trouble keeping up with BOTH of our lengthy responses on religion and marriage. LOL, LOL!! ;)

2:52 PM, July 08, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“What was the end result of the case? Was it reported in the news?”

I don’t know if it was ever reported, I heard about it when I was dating my wife in the late 1980’s. My Mother-in-law says it happened in the 1970’s but could not recall a more definitive time. She also never saw it in the news and as far as she knows it was never prosecuted.

Don’t worry Scia, I won’t try to debate the issue of abortion. I find no value in abortion when it’s used as a form of birth control.

Ken Weaver

5:56 PM, July 08, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To respond to the original anonymous post:

It's always unfortunate when arguments are made based upon a lack of the facts.

Marriage is indeed a civil right. The U.S. Supreme Court termed it as such as early as 1942 and many times after that (including in Loving v. Virginia where the Court said that laws prohibiting marriage were unconstitutional). And our representative democracy is based on everyone having equal rights AND the protection of those rights.

And to say that we all have equal rights since gays and lesbians can marry partners of the opposite sex is totally illogical. Loving v. Virginia clearly established that the right to marry is about being able to marry the person of your choice.

And anytime you bring in passages from the Bible about a civil matter, it pretty much negates your argument. This is exactly why that there is a separation of church and state. No religion is able to dictate public policy.

And the court's role is to interpret laws, but to also make sure that those laws are applied equally and fairly to everyone. All people should be treated equally under the law and have equal access to the same civil institutions (like civil marriage). This is why courts have often been at the forefront of civil rights movements. They are required to make sure that laws are consistent with the principles of equality found in our Constitution.

9:03 AM, July 09, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Ken,

You said:

"I find no value in abortion when it’s used as a form of birth control."

We are 2 for 2 in the "Both Agree" catagory....kind of scary!!!

Pheeeew!! I dodged a bullet on that topic.

8:09 PM, July 09, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Anonymous,

You said (without doing your homework of course):

"It's always unfortunate when arguments are made based upon a lack of the facts."

I could not of said it any better Anonymous.

Your analogy between banning homosexual marriage and laws which banned interracial marriage is NOT an accurate comparison. The Supreme Court struck down anti-miscegenation laws in 1967 (Loving v. Virginia) because they frustrated the core purpose of marriage in order to sustain a racist legal order. In Loving v. Virginia the institution of marriage was NOT redefined. The court concluded that using race to deny a couple the right/privilage,ECT to legally marry was discriminatory. Yet, it did not change the legal definition that marriage be confinded to an exclusive union of one man and one women.

While advocates of homosexual "marriage" claim to be the victims of discrimination, they have no legal reasoning to draw a parallel between racial discrimination and illegality of the so-called same-sex "marriage".

The issue of interracial marriage and same-sex "marriage" was appealed to the United States Supreme Court, which refused to hear it, citing "appeal dismissed for want of a substantial federal quesion" (Baker v. Nelson, 409 U.S. 810 (1972). The highest court in our land apparently did not view the race-homosexuality comparison as a serious constitutional question.

You said:

"Marriage is indeed a civil right. The U.S. Supreme Court termed it as such as early as 1942 and many times after that..."

Give me your "facts" on this one Anonymous. As a new reader of my blog, welcome by the way, you need to bring your facts to back up what you say. O.K.??

No academic institution in the WORLD, W.O.R.L.D, nor any U.S. Court has EVER established that homosexuality is given at birth and is a permanent feature of an individual like race, nationality and gender are. But there are hundreds of people documented who have happily and successfully left homosexuality. (Robert L. Spitzer, "Can Some Gay Men and Lesbians Change Their Sexual Orientation? 200 Participants Reporting a Change From Homosexual to Heterosexual Orientation," Archives of Sexual Behavior, 32 (2003): 403-17.)

Homosexuality and race are clearly two DIFFERENT things and therefore should be treated as such, which is something the highest court in the U.S. agree to as well.

You said:

"Loving v. Virginia clearly established that the right to marry is about being able to marry the person of your choice."

No, sorry it did not.

You said:

"This is exactly why that there is a separation of church and state."

Where is this "separation of church and state" stated in our government Anonymous??

You said:

"No religion is able to dictate public policy."

Have you read our U.S. Constitution, which is soley based on the Christian faith?

You said:

"And the court's role is to interpret laws,..."

I am grasping the bridge of my nose with my index finger and thumb and shaking my head!!!

Would you please pick up a history book and read something before you respond to my comments...please!!!!

8:44 PM, July 09, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I wrote this posting, I didn’t follow my own advice. I let my strong emotions about the topic of same-sex marriage dictate the tone. I can acknowledge that my first “lack of facts” statement might be somewhat insulting to you and for that I apologize. Clearly we both feel strongly about this issue, even though we don’t agree. Here’s some clarification about my post.

I actually have done a great deal of research on what I wrote. And I’ve read many of the court cases that deal with these issues. Also, I work in educational publishing and I have looked at many U.S. history books (including the full text of our U.S. Constitution).

First marriage was termed a civil right in Skinner v. Oklahoma (1942). Additional cases include Perez v. Sharp (1948), the first case where a state court declared their state anti-miscegenation laws as unconstitutional, and Loving v. Virginia (1967). The text of the Goodridge case lists even more.

The reason that I (and many others, including the SJC in the Goodridge decision) draw the comparison is because gays and lesbians were still not able to marry the person of their choice. So, we are being discriminated against due to our sexual orientation. Yes, race and sexual orientation are different. So, are race and creed, but they can still be the basis for discrimination. The government has recognized this; for example, in 1989, laws were enacted in Mass. that explicitly prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, and sexual orientation in public accommodations, housing, public and private employment, education, credit and union practices.

Here’s what Loving v. Virginia said:
“Marriage is one of the ‘basic civil rights of man,’ fundamental to our very existence and survival. To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State’s citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discriminations.”

I don’t think that Loving implied that same-sex marriage should also be legal, but, in my opinion, it does show that one can be deprived of the right to marry if you are not able to marry the person of your choice. Perez v. Sharp says, “the essence of the right to marry is freedom to join in marriage with the person of one’s choice.”

Loving indicated that antimiscegenation laws were purposely discriminatory and that the institution of civil marriage should not be restriced based on a person’s race. In Goodridge, the discrimination that was found was not indicated to be purposeful (like in Perez or Loving) but there was still discrimination present in the current marriage statutes that made resulted in gays and lesbians not having the ability to marry the one person of their choice. Goodridge also said: “In this case, as in Perez and Loving, a statute deprives individuals of access to an institution of fundamental legal, personal, and social significance -- the institution of marriage -- because of a single trait: skin color in Perez and Loving, sexual orientation here. As it did in Perez and Loving, history must yield to a more fully developed understanding of the invidious quality of the discrimination.”

The similarity between Loving and Goodridge is that after these cases, more people had equal access to the institution of civil marriage. And you are correct that Loving didn’t change whether or not marriage was between a man and a woman. Also, to clarify, Goodridge “refined the common-law meaning of marriage ...which is entirely consonant with established principles of jurisprudence empowering a court to refine a common-law principle in light of evolving constitutional standards.”

And I think it’s probably safer to agree to disagree re: sexual orientation is a choice or not. As a gay man, I feel that I can very much assure that for me, it is not a choice. And I’m sure that many, many gay people would agree with me. I wish it was a choice. I’m sure that I would’ve chosen otherwise, since being gay (and being on the receiving end of being told that you are innately morally wrong) is obviously pretty challenging. While there are many people who will say that they were gay and are now straight, many others will say otherwise. And former leaders of the ex-gay groups (Darlene Bogle, Michael Bussee, Jeremy Marks) themselves have even criticized these conversions. I would have to wonder what many of these people (who say that they were gay and are now straight) would have decided if they were counseled that it was indeed ok to be gay. And my personal opinion is that sexuality is a sliding scale. So, for some there may have been some “gay thoughts” present, alongside predominantly “straight thoughts,” so it was I think what is most sad is that many people (especially young people) are told that they’re not acceptable if they are gay, and they then feel that they must change in order to be acceptable.

I’m not sure what the confusion was with my statement about the courts having the role of “interpreting the law.” That is a direct quote from a history book. And to back it up, in Marbury v. Madison (1803), Chief Justice Marshall clarified the role of the Court and judicial review: “It is, emphatically, the province and the duty of the judicial department to say what the law is.”

When I said that “no religion is able to dictate public policy” I was only pointing out that religious and spiritual views, while very important to the individual, should not be the basis for a legal decision. Of course, religious and spiritual views influence one’s thinking, but at the end of the day, laws and court cases must be based on the principles of our Constitution.

You are correct in that there is no mention of the actual term “separation of church and state” in the Constitution. But there is also no mention of God or Jesus or any indication that one religion should be dictating public policy. The Bill of Rights begins with “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...” And many court cases have been based on making sure that the government is appropriately separated from endorsing any religion. Two examples are: LEMON v. KUTZMAN (1971) and WALZ v. TAX COMMISSION OF CITY OF NEW YORK, (1970).

I hope that this clarifies my first post. I’m a gay man and it was very challenging accepting this fact. I hope that you can maybe put yourself in my shoes for a moment and think about what a gay person, like myself, has to go through. How would you feel hearing such negative things about you and the person you care about?

I have accepted being gay and I’m now in a happy, committed relationship with a man that I hoped to marry (since I live in Mass.) when the time is right. The founding of America is based upon equality. Our laws have had to catch up to that great principle, since they haven’t always reflected this. Thanks to the legalization of same-sex marriage, I now truly feel equal.

4:57 PM, July 10, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Anonymous,

I will comment on the many flaws and unfactual statements, such as same-sex marriage is "legal" in MA, that you make tomorrow because I need to get up for work early like yourself.

Until then I will leave you with a question:

How are laws made in our country?

8:00 PM, July 11, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used the term "legalization" of same-sex marriage in a very general way, since that wasn't the focus of my sentence. To be more accurate, the SJC declared "that barring an individual from the protections, benefits, and obligations of civil marriage solely because that person would marry a person of the same sex violates the Massachusetts Constitution." I think that it's accurate to state that Courts can declare laws as unconstitutional. The SJC did not create a separate institution of "same-sex marriage" (in the same way that the U.S. Supreme Court didn't create a separate institution called "interracial marriage" in 1967, when it declared anti-miscegenation laws as unconstitutional). The Court ruled that barring same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. And yes, it did redefine a common-law principle, which apparently had precedent, according the SJC. I'm sure you disagree with the court ruling, but I'm just stating my understanding of the Court decision.

7:13 AM, July 12, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Anonymous,

You said:

"First marriage was termed a civil right in Skinner v. Oklahoma (1942)."

You could not be any further from the truth.

In Skinner v. Oklahoma there was completely nothing said about marriage being a civil right for same-sex couples. Completely NOTHING.

In this case Oklahoma's Criminal Sterilization Act allowed the state to sterilize a person who had been convicted three or more times of crimes "amounting to felonies involving moral turpitude."

Justice Douglas viewed procreation as one of the fundamental rights requiring the judiciary's strict scrutiny.

The opinions of the justices of this case touched a sensitive and important area of human rights. Oklahoma deprives certain individuals of a right which is basic to the perpetuation of a race-the right to have offspring.

NOTHING to do with same-sex couples "marrying".

In Perez v. Sharp (1948):

At the time, a California law stated that ". . . no license may be issued authorizing the marriage of a white person with a Negro, mulatto, Mongolian or member of the Malay race." (Civil Code, section 69) California had banned interracial marriage since 1850, when it first enacted a statute prohibiting whites from marrying blacks or mulattoes.

In this case the Supreme Court of California recognized that interracial bans on marriage violated the Equal Protection Amendment of the Federal Constitution. The plaintiffs won their case by a narrow margin; the vote was four to three.

NOTHING to do with same-sex couples "marrying".

You said:

"Yes, race and sexual orientation are different. So, are race and creed, but they can still be the basis for discrimination."

Your comparison of cases involving interracial marriages and same-sex "marriages" is intellectually lazy and irresponsible with no justification for your point that same-sex "marriages" have legal creedence.

You said:

"Also, to clarify, Goodridge “refined the common-law meaning of marriage ...which is entirely consonant with established principles of jurisprudence empowering a court to refine a common-law principle in light of evolving constitutional standards.”

What constitutional standard implies that the judicial system MAKES law???

Regarding your thoughts on the origins of homosexuality:

How would you catagorize your faith in Christ?


You said:

"Chief Justice Marshall clarified the role of the Court and judicial review: “It is, emphatically, the province and the duty of the judicial department to say what the law is.”

The federal courts often are called the guardians of the Constitution because their rulings protect rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution. Through fair and impartial judgments, the federal courts APPLY the law to resolve disputes. The courts do NOT make the laws. That is the responsibility of Congress. Nor do the courts have the power to ENFORCE the laws. That is the role of the President and the many executive branch departments and agencies such as our LEGISLATORS who NEVER voted on Same-sex "marriages" three years ago.

Yes, Justice Marshall "...the duty of the judicial department is to say what the law is" NOT MAKE it with your special interest laden agenda.

You said:

"...laws and court cases must be based on the principles of our Constitution."

A Constitution which has a Judaeo-Christian upbringing that used the Bible in order to be formed by our Founding Fathers.

You said:

"...there is also no mention of God or Jesus or any indication that one religion should be dictating public policy."

O.K., you are correct, but what is your point? What one religion is dictating public policy?

You said in your next post:

"I think that it's accurate to state that Courts can declare laws as unconstitutional."

Again, a MAKING not an APPLICATION of law. Why do you think many MA residents asked for and signed a petition for the impeachment of Margaret Marshall? She, and many of the other justices, were in breach of their roles as justices. Simple.

You said in closing:

"The Court ruled that barring same-sex couples from marrying is unconstitutional. And yes, it did redefine..."

Redefine... there is that MAKING LAW problem again.

Thanks for stopping by Anonymous.

God Bless,
Scia

8:28 AM, July 12, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I debated whether it would be productive for me to further engage in this discussion. The reason being is that I wasn’t sure that I could bring anything to the table that you would say, “Gee, you have a point there. I may not totally agree but you do have a point.” After having read more of your posts, it appears that you have very, very strong opinions and I wondered whether you are truly open to seeing something from a different perspective, even if it’s fact-based. For example, is there any information that you could be presented with that would encourage you to rethink any of your views about same-sex marriage?

Did you try to put yourself in my shoes and think how I, as a gay man, view the world? This is a tough thing to do, even in every day life with family and friends, and even more difficult with significant issues. I have found personally that there is real effort needed to really be open to new information and a willingness to see if it’s valid. For example, if you’re upset with a friend over him/her being inconsiderate. If you approach the friend and then find out that there was a lot more to the story than you thought and he/she wasn’t really being inconsiderate, you do have to do a mental shift to absorb that new info and not be angry anymore. I’ve found that some people would rather hold onto to the old info (even though it continues to make them feel bad) than accept new information which would ultimately make them feel better.

And I did try to put myself in your shoes. Why would this guy spend so much time writing about how same-sex marriage (and various other gay-related issues) is wrong? Based on some other entries I would have to assume that you believe that being gay is just inherently wrong (based on your understanding of the Bible). And you believe that it is morally wrong to allow legal or social recognition that being gay is acceptable. So, I will give you the benefit of the doubt that you must feel that you are speaking up about something that you feel is bad for society and trying to make it “right.”

It’s unfortunate though that it is at the expense of other people, like myself. I consider the “gay agenda” to be nothing more than wanting to be accepted as equals and treated with dignity in the eyes of the law and (hopefully) society. And I think it’s safe to say that we all want to be treated as such. Unfortunately, if we waited for everyone to be ok with same-sex marriage, etc, we’d be waiting for a while. I read a statistic that showed that when antimisgenation laws were declared unconstitutional, 70% of the U.S. disapproved of interracial marriage. Often times, the law is well ahead of public opinion.

To clarify my previous post:

I never stated that Skinner v. Oklahoma, or Perez v. Sharp said anything about same-sex couples marrying. I was pointing out that these cases (for separate reasons) clarified that the right to marry is indeed a civil right for all individuals. I had stated, “I don’t think that Loving implied that same-sex marriage should also be legal, but, in my opinion, it does show that one can be deprived of the right to marry if you are not able to marry the person of your choice. Perez v. Sharp says, “the essence of the right to marry is freedom to join in marriage with the person of one’s choice.”

So, I thought that I was being fairly clear here that obviously these cases do not explicitly mention marriage for same-sex couples, but they set up legal precedent that (1) the right to marry is a a civil right that each individual should be able to exercise and (2) the importance of being able to marry the person of your choice is very connected to that civil right.

And technically speaking, there’s no civil right for same-sex couples to marry in the same way that there’s no civil right for straight couples to marry. Civil rights are the rights of each individual. In Goodridge the court said: “... constitutional protections extend to individuals and not to categories of people. Thus, when an individual desires to marry, but cannot marry his or her chosen partner because of the traditional opposite-sex restriction, a violation of art. 1 has occurred. See Commonwealth v. Chou, 433 Mass. 229, 237-238 (2001) (assuming statute enforceable only across gender lines may offend Massachusetts equal rights amendment). I find it disingenuous, at best, to suggest that such an individual’s right to marry has not been burdened at all, because he or she remains free to chose another partner, who is of the opposite sex.”

I said “Also, to clarify, Goodridge “refined the common-law meaning of marriage ...which is entirely consonant with established principles of jurisprudence empowering a court to refine a common-law principle in light of evolving constitutional standards.” And you then said, “What constitutional standard implies that the judicial system MAKES law???” I’m not a judge, obviously, but I read this to mean that the court was looking at how to appropriately apply the principles of equality contained in article 1. Apparently, they felt that it included being able to refine a common-law principle. This isn’t literally making law and apparently there was a legal precedent for doing this, as the court cited. The court said it was unconstitutional to bar an individual from marrying a same-sex partner in the same way that Loving v. Virginia said it was unconstitutional to bar someone from marrying a person of another race. A law technically wasn’t created there either, but the antimiscegenation laws of many states were invalidated.

You said that my “comparison of cases involving interracial marriages and same-sex “marriages” is intellectually lazy and irresponsible with no justification for your point that same-sex “marriages” have legal creedence.” I don’t really know what to say to this other than that I do think there’s a very strong connection here (as did the SJC and many, many others who have written about the topic). And just because you disagree with this connection doesn’t necessarily make it “intellectually lazy” and “irresponsible.”

Many court cases affect law and how laws are executed. Yes, courts apply law, but they also have the additional role of interpreting the law, which is what judicial review is. That’s just the way our government works.

And while marriage for same-sex couples “originated” with the Goodridge decision, our state legislature (made up of people who represent us) has voted on the issue of gay marriage many, many times. And the majority of the time they have chosen to vote for the equality and dignity of gays, lesbians, and their families. This may not represent your view, but the legislature has a broader responsibility than just reflecting the will of the majority. They are there to make sure that the minority is protected as well.

And I’m not sure what else to say about the Constitution issue. It seemed to me that you were saying that because our Constitution was based on Judeo-Christian values that our laws should be reflecting Judeo-Christian beliefs (and according to SOME Christians and SOME Jews, being gay is immoral, so therefore our laws should prohibit gay marriage). I did not think that it was confusing to point out that that there has always been an effort to have separation of church and state (and I gave two court cases and the First Amendment to prove that).

And you seemed to have a problem with my statement, “I think that it’s accurate to state that Courts can declare laws as unconstitutional.” when you said, “Again, a MAKING not an APPLICATION of law.” I didn’t think that I was saying something that controversial. There is no law that is literally made here. The Court’s role is to often determine whether or not current law(s) are constitutional (consistent with our Constitution) or not. I think that this is a pretty common understanding of their role.

As far as my faith: I actually have a very strong belief in God. I know that God loves me and is very much a part of my relationship with my boyfriend. This has never been an issue of confusion for me.

I’m sure that you think this is totally inaccurate, but you don’t need to quote me anything from the Bible because faith is a personal matter. I think it’s more important to forge your own internal connection to God. Organized religion may or may not play a role in this process. I know that my connection to God led me to accepting myself as a gay man and finding a very loving and supportive boyfriend.

My opinion is that are so many interpretations of the Bible and practices that if we were to follow them nowadays, they would be deemed ridiculous. I find it sad that people still hold on to a belief that God thinks that being in gay relationship is considered morally wrong (while at the same time disregarding many outdated ways of thinking that are contained within the Bible).

The inherent conflict of a loving God being so critical of gay people was illustrated for me when I read a Newsweek article in the fall and a priest or minister said something like, “I have had to reevaluate my view of homosexuality. I just can’t picture Jesus out at an anti-gay rally, holding a sign.”

I wish you the best and I hope that there is something in what I wrote that may have possibly given you new information to consider. If not though, well, at least I tried.

Best wishes,
KS

9:42 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

Anonymous,

You said:

"...I wasn’t sure that I could bring anything to the table that you would say, “Gee, you have a point there. I may not totally agree but you do have a point."

I have said this to statements that have valid comparisons and the like. Read a little deeper into my blog to observe this trend.

When you compare the Civil Rights movement to same-sex "marriages" there will never be any comparisons either hypothetically or legally to justify your stance. These two issues are completely different situations.

You said in a previous post:

You said:

"...there is also no mention of God or Jesus or any indication that one religion should be dictating public policy."

I asked you without any answer:

"O.K., you are correct, but what is your point? What one religion is dictating public policy?"

You said:

"...I would have to assume that you believe that being gay is just inherently wrong (based on your understanding of the Bible)."

What is your understanding of homosexuality based on Biblical teachings? Please cite scripture verses.

You said:

" I read a statistic that showed that when antimisgenation laws were declared unconstitutional, 70% of the U.S. disapproved of interracial marriage. Often times, the law is well ahead of public opinion."

Again, interracial marriage and the Civil Rights movement has nothing to do with same-sex "marriage" other than the fact that they both have the word marriage in them. Why are you so stuck on this issue? Antimisgenation laws and legalizing sexual desires have no comparisons.

You said:

"I was pointing out that these cases (for separate reasons) clarified that the right to marry is indeed a civil right for all individuals."

"all individuals" did not, and does not include various sexual orientations/behaviors/ways of life. "all individuals" include heterosexual men and women. When the courts decided the fate of these cases it was for the fate of heterosexual relationships not other sexually manipulated relationships. This is why I think you did imply that Skinner v. Oklahoma, and Perez v. Sharp said something about same-sex couples "marrying".

You said:

"The court said it was unconstitutional to bar an individual from marrying a same-sex partner in the same way that Loving v. Virginia said it was unconstitutional to bar someone from marrying a person of another race."

This is were the MA Supreme Court messed up. They took a case that represented apples, Loving v. Virginia, and blended them with oranges, or traditional marriage, and made another fruit or in this case another "law". Based on this and the fact that the legislative branch, who MAKES law, NEVER voted on same-sex "marriage" in order for others to "marry" same-sex partners in MA, same-sex "marriages" are not legal in MA. The courts can not manipulate their roles in order to fit the agendas of special interest groups. THAT is unconstitutional.

I said in my earlier comments to you:

“Your comparison of cases involving interracial marriages and same-sex “marriages” is intellectually lazy and irresponsible with no justification for your point that same-sex “marriages” have legal creedence.”

You replied:

"I don’t really know what to say to this other than that I do think there’s a very strong connection here (as did the SJC and many, many others who have written about the topic)."

Who are the "many, many"? You need to cite your work before you pass things off as fact.

You said:

"Many court cases affect law and how laws are executed. Yes, courts apply law, but they also have the additional role of interpreting the law, which is what judicial review is. That’s just the way our government works."

Judicial review does not involve MAKING law. It is that simple. Yes, court cases affect law and how laws are executed, but court cases can not make law. This is how our government works Anonymous.

This is the intellectual laziness that I am talking about when you make comments like this:

"And while marriage for same-sex couples “originated” with the Goodridge decision, our state legislature (made up of people who represent us) has voted on the issue of gay marriage many, many times. And the majority of the time they have chosen to vote for the equality and dignity of gays, lesbians, and their families."

We had 61 votes in favor of putting the marriage issue on the ballot for 2008 this past June 14th at the Constitutional Convention (Con Con). When the Con Con was in a short recess right after the vote was taken, they came back into session that same day and re-voted. We then had 62 votes in favor of putting the issue on the ballot.

Can you explain why Arlene Issacson, of the Gay And Lesbian Political Caucus, was quoted in the Boston Globe on June 14th as saying that she could not believe how much they had to increase the anti in order to buy off legislators votes?. Come on.

You said:

"As far as my faith: I actually have a very strong belief in God. I know that God loves me and is very much a part of my relationship with my boyfriend. This has never been an issue of confusion for me."

Anonymous, if you have a strong relationship with God then you should have no problem with His scripture outlined in 1 Corinthians 6:9 - "Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites".

Jesus does love you and your friend, but he does not love your sin or MY sin. We must work together to prevent each other from sinning. Can we do that such that we CAN both inherit the kingdom of God someday?

You said:

"I find it sad that people still hold on to a belief that God thinks that being in gay relationship is considered morally wrong (while at the same time disregarding many outdated ways of thinking that are contained within the Bible)."

What "outdated ways of thinking" are you talking about?

God bless,

Scia

4:14 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Scia,
I didn’t respond right away, because I didn’t honestly feel it was worth it. But I thought I’d post one more response since I had a few extra minutes after work.

I actually appreciated the exchange we had. I’ve learned even more how people think so differently from one another. But I don’t feel it that it’s that productive to go back and forth like this.

I feel pretty confident in my assessment of how our government works. I might not have gotten it 100% right, but I’m pretty sure that you didn’t either. I will continue to educate myself more and more, but this education certainly should be based on a true respect for the principles of equality that our country was based on.

I ended up researching even more court cases showing why there is a separation of church and state. This even came up in the CNN/YouTube Dem. debate where John Edwards agreed that he should not base public policy decisions on his faith. And Joe Biden agreed and said it well when he stated that his faith can help, but at the end of the day he has to base his votes on reason. Religious values should not affect who is treated equal under the law.

I take my belief in God quite seriously and I have no doubt that God loves me and my boyfriend. Your interpretation of God is different than mine--period. My beliefs about God are not based on an interpretation of the Bible that tells me that I’m not ok. If you don’t adhere to my interpretation, then go right ahead and feel that way, but please don’t assume that it’s your job to force your religious beliefs on me and the public; it’s not up to you to police the universe for God.

I honestly wonder if Jesus Christ appeared to you and said, “Hey, I love gay people as much as I love straight people and want them to be just as happy and equal in their relationships. Those passages it the Bible weren’t interpreted correctly,” if you’d believe Him. I’m sure that this is where you’re thinking, “Oh, but He wouldn’t do that!” But what if He did?

It seems much more logical to me to assume that God is more loving, than less loving (and intolerant). It doesn’t even make logical sense to me. God created the entire Universe (not just the world) and yet he has a problem if I find love and happiness wiht a man instead of a woman? I think that a major problem here is that you’re concerning yourself with how I (and others) interpret God. You should really just concern yourself with how you interpret God. If your beliefs work for you--great.

So, I won’t be posting here again. I’ll just agree to disagree with you. Take care.

-KS

Ugh, considering that it’s a strong possibility that you’re not open to anything I’ve just written, I again spent too much time on this. Well, my fault. Oh well.

3:04 PM, August 06, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“It seems much more logical to me to assume that God is more loving, than less loving (and intolerant).”

HAHAHAHA now that’s funny. You weren’t reading the King James Version now were you? It’s okay, you can admit it.

Ken Weaver

7:18 PM, August 09, 2007  
Blogger SCIA said...

KS,

God does love you and your boyfriend, but he hates your sin.

Can you interpret 1 Corinthians 6:9 for me?

8:43 PM, August 13, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“Can you interpret 1 Corinthians 6:9 for me?”

I hope no one minds me doing it.

I say it means that people who have intercourse with anyone other than their marriage partner/ idol worshipers/ people with feminine qualities/ people who abuse themselves with mankind won’t inherit god’s kingdom. Apparently Paul was so obsessed with sex he had to reference it twice; fornicators, adulterers. It might even be three depending on how you interpret the “abusers of themselves with mankind” part. That’s the one that bothers me; it can be interpreted different ways. It might be homosexuality or people who like to cut their own skin or people who like pain or a number of other ways. It depends on how one views the word abuse. I see abuse as meaning pain or disfigurement caused by a person. I can abuse my dog or my son but it doesn’t necessarily mean sexually. I’m not sure why Paul would reference sex three times though. Fornication and Adultery both mean intercourse with a person you’re not married to. Homosexuality would fit into that category unless people were marrying their homosexual partners back then. The “effeminate” one bothers me too. What if you’re a woman? He doesn’t say anything in that verse separating the sexes so by definition women that act like women won’t inherit god’s kingdom either (I wonder if my wife knows?) By the way, how many people do you think will inherit god’s kingdom?

Ken Weaver

5:44 PM, August 15, 2007  

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