Monday, July 16, 2007

Ask Dr. Helen

My column is up at PJM:

What does Dr. Helen think of same-sex marriage? Does her Insta-husband agree? If the answer were “yes” and they disagreed strongly on that and other key political issues, does she think it would do damage to their relationship? Fasten your seatbelts: this week, PJM’s advice columnist wades into some controversial waters.

I would love to hear what my readers think about gay marriage and whether or not you could be married or in a relationship with a person who is significantly different from you in their political beliefs. You can comment here, at PJM, or ask a question at askdrhelen at


Blogger Don Surber said...

I'm all for gay marriage. But if people think marriage will solve their troubles, they will have a troubled marriage. I am also for the following gay rights: The right to vote, to serve on a jury and to have the best seat available on public transportation.

8:41 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger tomcal said...

Personlly, I would not like being in a gay marriage, regardless of the beliefs of my partner. But if someone else wants to do it, fine with me.

I do prefer some other term than "marriage" for it. I think the the word marriage should be reserved for a man and a woman. Marriage, in every language that I am familiar with, is a word that describes a relationship between a husband (almost always a man) and a wife (almost always a woman).

In Spanish, for instance, all nouns have genders, which allows you to keep a conversation straight using only prounouns, and fewer actual nouns. In discussing gay marriage, you can have endless fun talking about who in a gay couple is the husband or the wife, and its all the more fun because you can change the genders of the words but then add on long strings of gender conflicting pronouns until no one knows what the hell you are talking about.

In my own marriage, which as lasted 25 years, I believe that its success is primarily because or simply caring for and being attentive to your partner's needs. No one has the exact same political beliefs, but I do think you need to share basic core values.

Even though I think she is hot and I agree with a lot of what she says, I don't think I could be married to Ann Coulter, because she doesn't value keeping her mouth shut at times when doing so would be more pleasant for those around her.

10:02 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Responding directly to the question requires acceptance of the notion that "gay marriage" can exist. If one takes the position that marriage is an institution created with the principal intent of providing offspring with an optimal stable environment in which to develop, thus adding the fringe benefit of a healthier society, then one cannot accept the terminology and hence the associated arguments "for". And I do not.

What I do support is elimination of "privileges" that fall outside these bounds. If homosexual or heterosexual couples want to live in a long-term relationship sans offspring, they should not be penalized for doing so, nor should marriage be the necessary vehicle for ensuring "fairness". Bringing in benefits and external legal issues just obscures, and ultimately dispenses with, the fundamental purpose of marriage as I view it.

As for whether or not I could live in a committed relationship with someone who held significantly different political beliefs, the answer (from experience) is yes so long as we openly agree to disagree, avoid the subject in day-to-day discussion, and do not allow it to become an anger outlet.

10:19 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger rlbates said...

I don't know that I am for gay "marriage" but I do feel you have a right to define your own family. If you chose a partner, then when you are in the hospital (sorry I'm a doctor, so this is where my mind goes) then I need to be able to share information freely with your "family". My husband, legally, gets to make decisions for me when I am unable. The gay couple should be able to legally do the same. There "blood relatives" should not be able to supercede the one they choose to be "family" with.

They should also be able (if they are family, as the above commentor, for years (10, 20, 25, whatever) to have social security widow/widower benefits, inheritance rights (if they haven't gotten around to writing that will), etc.

[Possible conflict--married for nearly 18 years now]

10:20 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone,' it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less.'

What ever it is, "same-sex marriage" won't be marriage, any more than a union between a man and a dog is marriage.


10:34 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clearly separate the legal/property issues from the moral/religious/romantic issues. From the State's point of view, a marriage should be a contract between two people - nothing more. The contract should define rights and responsibilities, next-of-kin status, ownership of private and common property, and disposal of property after the death of one or both partners. The State should require the participants to enter into such a contract as a condition of issuing the marriage certificate.

The State should not automatically recognize religious marriages. No legal contract, no recognition.

Whether the partners are male, female, or canine - the State should stay out of it.

Don't call the contract "marriage." Call it "civil union" or something even more legalese.

11:03 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Peregrine John said...

As regards the other question, I would say that not only is it possible for 2 people with rather different politics to have a happy marriage, I know several examples personally of just that.

As I consider the possible combinations, the only ways to ensure trouble involve having at least 1 of the people intolerant of other beliefs. If someone's an ass (either meaning) about any aspect of life, it can and probably will cause trouble.

11:14 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Peregrine John said...

...or, as Steven Wright put it,
"We broke up over religious differences. She thought she was God, and I disagreed."

11:16 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in an assumed partnership with
my "complimentry sexed other".
Different views on religion
Different views on politics
Different views on firearms
Different views on confidants
Different views on annual celebrations
Different views on business theory.

Apparently, I've made an impression
over the last 20 years to be a man of trusted integrity. There's been no need or question of "State", "Church", or other intervention in
concecrating our partnership. In fairness, I've made it clear to what lengths I've prepared that "the State" or other interlopers will face should they attempt to extort her future should they even raise a hand upon my departure.

I have only found pleas for homosexual "marriage", including most of the "arguments", as a mere ploy to impose homosexual politics and "special exceptions",bolstered by communist and socialist "Gaming the system" if you will.
I offer, by my own example as evidence,that neither the church, nor the state, is qualified to preside over a viable partnership.
Granted, I've actually taken the time to research, learn, cite, and apply laws appropriate to my situation. It wasn't a "free lunch". It actually involved effort beyond determining an agenda menu to impose on others for ONE SPECIAL DAY.

I'm glad to see the "other" posting function has returned,*sigh* but not the anonymous one. Grain of salt taken.

11:20 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


11:25 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On the topic of "gay marriage", I happen to agree with Quasimodo.

As for whether one can be married to a person with differing politicvaland social viewpoints, I think itis possible, as longas either part does not allow their opinions( poitical, social or otehrwise) interfere in their relationship. E.G: I have a friend , who is kinda conservative/free-market, very proSecond Amendment, whereas his wife is a really strong leftist professr at the UNiv of Michigan. They have a wonderful relationship, becasue they respect each other andlove each other, and allow each otehr to have freedom to have their own opinions.
On theother hand,I also know a couple who are both members of myChurch, who have been married for approx 30 years, 7 kids,and who are splittin gup, cuz, they dont love ot respecteach other.

Having said that, I dont think I personally,could live and love and respect someone who is a loony-leftist nutcase, who thinks Cindy Sheehan is the saviour of mankind.

11:25 AM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Marriage is a social and legal construct, and in my opinion it is intended for the protection of children. I believe it was created because of the high likelihood that a heterosexual couple will naturally produce offspring, whether they plan to or not. So given that gay relationships do not naturally produce offspring, I see no need to extend marital legal rights to gays. Further, I would find it frightening to say that if a gay couple became parents, they could marry, because there will be some that will seek parenthood just to justify this arrangement.

So I don't see any reason to extend the definition of marriage to include anything other than one man and one woman. There are other means of creating a legal bond between any two people, something I realized when my wife and I bought our first house, because we closed on the house and became homeowners one month prior to our wedding.

I view the gay marriage thing as just another push by gay rights activists to be in my face and force their lifestyle into the accepted main stream.

However, I do not regard gay marriage as the biggest threat to marriage. Far and away the biggest threat to marriage is the radical feminist initiatives that have invaded our legal system and gone so far as to make marriage unbearable for men in that they risk the loss of everything just by saying "I do." Included in this is the notion of reproductive choice. Men have no choice. Even if they use birth control themselves, their wives can go out and get themselves pregnant and stick the husband with the economic burden. This imbalance is a gross contradiction to the notion of gender equality.

But then equality isn't what the feminists have in mind.


11:44 AM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Cham said...

To make a long story short, I would like to see the government get out of the marriage business. If you wish to get married go to your favorite church, synagogue or place of worship and let them deal with it. As far as taxes are concerned, everyone can be responsible for their own return.

12:11 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my other life (you know, when not reading or typing on this blog) I do my best not to rain on anyone's parade, steal anyone's thunder, restrict anyone from pursuing their dreams - none of which I have the right to do anyway - as long as they are not hurting someone else in the process.

I'm no judge or jury. But I sure am opinionated on what this thread is about. So I'll sit quietly and read.

12:44 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Joe said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1:03 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Joe said...

The notion that the state legalized marriage for the benefit of [raising] children beyond the legal is simply untrue. Marriage was originally legalized by the state purely for property and inheritance reasons. In this regard, I totally agree with bugs--get the state out of the marriage business. The state grants a civil union for legal reasons and that's it. (I'd also drop common law and any other form of pseudo-marriage as far as the state is concerned.)

Before anyone claim this isn't tenable, in fact it's quite common throughout the world.

1:04 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger TMink said...

I concur with everything Bugs wrote, but perhaps for different reasons. As a Christian, marriage is a religious sacrement for me. And there are religious rules concerning it. So I could never vote for gay marriage.

As an American, I believe in equal access for all. So I would and do support civil unions for consenting adults. But I do not want the ACLU or Congress to tell my church what they can and cannot support or recognize. It is not their business and would violate the establishment clause.


2:14 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To me, marriage is a religious issue. There is no reason whatsoever that it should be a civil matter. If a state can "license" something, then they can outlaw it. They can tax it. They can say who or what you may marry. They can build an entire industry on breaking them up.

I want government out of the marriage issue altogther. Leave it as a religious issue. Gay people can get married in religions that allow gay marriage, and people opposed to gay marriage can belong to religions that prohibit it.

If your personal situations need legal protections, then create a legal contract. If not, don't.

This schema maximizes people's freedoms.

2:43 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

I am opposed to gay marriage, but support first cousin marriage. This might be inconsistent, but I'm sure there are more people with the opposite view.

I am currently single and I think it would be hard for me to marry someone with political views that were too drastic from mine. I am not a very frank and/or opinionated person, but I still get angry if my views are attacked too much. I could possibly be married to a moderate, a libertarian or a really tolerant liberal. It would be important to have a lot of respect for your partner and to civilly disagree. I was once really close with this girl from Alabama I met through the internet. We gradually fell apart, but one time she straight out asked me if I was homophobic. I found it to be a really offensive question, even though for the most part she was a really nice girl. My parents have some differing political views, my mom is a conservative Democrat and my dad is a conservative Libertarian. They have been married for 25 years. For the most part they just avoid talking about politics, because it seems like one or the other becomes really sensitive about certain topics.

2:45 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with pretty much everyone on here to get government out of marriage and really, the family (family courts, et al). I also agree that the term marriage should be reserved for a man and a woman. If same-sex civil unions or even bigamy becomes commonplace due to the government getting out of marriage/family, then so be it.

2:53 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Mercurior said...

for those who have read the bible, they dont mind plural marriages.

if 2 consenting adults want to be together, get married in the legal terms, then why shouldnt they, they arent forcing their beleif onto you, they just want to be together. is that so wrong.

2 people or more that care for each other, regardless of gender or orientation, then they should get the legal protection of the institution.

if i wanted to marry 5 women, and they all wanted to marry me, why shouldnt they.. because a book written 2000 years ago told me too. (but even then they agree with plural marriages).

why does it upset so many people, its got nothing to do with them, its MY private life, my choice my decision. its got nothing to do with you.

there is a difference between the legal institution and the religious institution.

some people say that marriage is only for those who want to have children, does that mean i cant get married unless i want children, what about those who cant have children are they to be denied marriage.

if it hurts no one, then why not.. this business of interfering in other people and their freedom of expressing LOVE, wheres the freedom to love others. LOVE IS paramount, physical, mental, emotional, love is whats needed, not this marriage is ONLY for the production of children. marriage is and should be a legal expression of love.

3:26 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think it's about interfering with people's emotional expressions. It's about the State offering benefits to people based on their marital status. It's about people sharing legal and economic benefits and obligations based on their marital status. And it's about businesses (such as insurance companies and hospitals) providing and pricing their services based on customers' marital status.

If people expect governments and businesses to take marital status into account, then they have to accept that governments and business must have a solid, working definition of "marriage." They can't just say anybody who claims to be married is married. They also can't say only people who are joined according to Christian or Jewish or Muslim traditions are married. I'm suggesting that a legal document - even a simple one - would remove the doubt on one hand and the discrimination on the other.

Or maybe not. It's obviously a complicated question.

I agree that two people should be able to get together in a "marriage-like" arrangement (for want of a better term) without asking permission of Church or State. If you can keep your property separate, your taxes separate, your medical benefits separate - in short, all your legal and financial affairs separate - then more power to you. Just don't expect the Church or State to take your word for it.

4:03 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Peregrine John said...

I'm with cham. (Conceptually, not matrimonially. Ya loons.) If marriage was treated as an actual contract, with everything that entailed, I could understand governmental interest. However, since it gets The Legal Treatment only when convenient for said agencies, calling it a contract seems either disingenuous or near-sighted. I say, either make it an honest to goodness contract, or get rid of the laws screwing around with it.

Honestly, sometimes I think we put the "mental" in "governmental."

4:23 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a hopelessly old-fashioned woman who believes that marriage is between one woman and one man.

If you are in a same sex union and want some of the legal benefits of marriage - property, inheritance and such - get a lawyer and get it in writing. But leave marriage as it is.

As for being in a relationship with someone who has vastly different beliefs than I do - i dunno. Marriage is hard enough.

5:12 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't mind being in a relationship with someone whose beliefs are different as long as they admit that their beliefs are wrong and that they only cling to them because they are a bad person.

5:41 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The question seems to be at least half moot, since we can't reconcile gay-male and conservative in the same person. (Yes, I’m sure “you” know an exception)

In the straight world, it's first a question of age; at 30, Romeo would have thought twice about approaching Juliet's balcony. As teenagers, there is no "politics,"

But even as adults, men tend to marry the woman, not her politics.

As for the women, they appear to be considerably more flexible in their political beliefs.

On the other hand, my beautiful ex-wife told me that "I" was no prize package either.

Aside from the basics, I defy anyone to write the book for a successful marriage. Because in the end, it will apply to a small, a very small percentage. But certainly enough to make it a best seller.

6:23 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Bruce Hayden said...

I do believe that two people who have differing political beliefs could marry happily. Unfortunately, I am probably not one of them. I am too likely to argue on general priciples.

I see this all the time in my family - we all agree to disagree politically and not discuss politics or anything political. But it never lasts. Someone will say something that is shaded by the left orientation of the MSM, and I will immediately try to correct their misrepresentation. For example, a family member pointed out that the "surge" in Iraq had already failed, according to several new sources, including PBS and the BBC. I immediately responded that it was really only a month old, and was succeeding much better than expected.

I have bit my tongue more than once when with a woman and she and her friends were going on about "Bush is stupid", and then went on to vote for someone with lower test scores.

The basic problem I see is that we are all conditioned by those we hang around with. Those women didn't think twice about the Bush is Stupid jokes, since they all heard them all the time and they and all their friends thought them appropriate and funny.

And I am sure that the opposite applies - I have seen some women go balistic over some women being called feminazis, and calling Edwards the Breck Girl is sure to set off many liberals. And, again, both give away where one is getting his or her news and world view.

So, yes, it might work for some. And it probably would have worked for me at a much younger age. But as I have aged, I have become much more political, and as a result, am much more likely to automatically pick (verbal) fights with those of the opposite political persuasion. And that is unlikely to result in a harmonious relationship.

7:00 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could care less who people marry. I'm Scottish on my mother's side. Our big issue has more to do with inter-species marriage....

Baahhhhh! to you, too, Sweetie! ;)

7:56 PM, July 16, 2007  
Blogger Webutante said...

Disappointed to hear this, Helen, but certainly not surprised. A little too sophisticated for me and my beliefs.

9:54 PM, July 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, thing is. . .all these supposedly rational objections to gay marriage would make a lot more sense to me if I didn't know that I would have been immensely better off being co-raised by any one of my five paternal uncles instead of my abusive alcoholic bitch of a 'mother'.

And if I *had* been raised by my father and an uncle, what grounds exactly would there be for denying them the same legal and social advantages that would normally have been afforded to my father and my mother?

None, as far as I can tell. That is, apart from "they're not being sexually intimate with each other", which in fact would have been different from way too many already existing marriages. . .how, again, exactly?

So apparently what's being denied here is the right of two men or women to both have sex AND raise children with each other.

You can do one or the other, it seems, but NOT both at the same time.

I would really like to know why that is or should be, please.

Oh, as to marrying someone with significantly differing political views: yeah, right; like I'd ever be stupid enough to marry someone that stupid.

12:03 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gay marriage or polygamy would add more damage to the already tottering monogamy. Not sure if it would be the straw that broke the camel's back, but there's no need to test that either. Social arrangements are like bridges, pretty hard to fix once they're broken.

I married someone who is 'independent-leans left'. She learned that I really do want to hear her view, but I also insist in the long run on her hearing my view. I also don't thing politics is something for friends to get angry at each other over, and a sense of humor about the whole thing helps.

One further complication was that I was vastly more knowledgeable about politics than my wife which is not surprising since I know more about politics than 90% of Americans. But it does add some more wrinkles to the problem.


12:40 AM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger tomcal said...


1st cousin?!?!? Well, although I have never witnessed it in real life, I am familiar with the saying "Find a cousin, you've found a bride..."

For me that's a little too close. I have some very attractive first cousins and there seems to be something in me that just says no, no way, not even in the realm of possibilities. Maybe if the world were destroyed and we were the only two human beings left on the planet; but even then I would probably opt for extinction.

Kids of 1st cousins (cousins once removed) - hard to think about. 2nd cousins (your parents' cousins kids), I have one who is extremely attractive and successful, and under the right cicumstances I might do her, but even that is a stretch. But if a child of hers and a child of mine (third cousins) were to hit it off, I suppose I wouldn't experience any second thoughts.

I guess if I were a member of a Royal Family, the family would die out.

12:55 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But, again, Tennwriter, would 'marriage-like' formalizations of child-rearing arrangements by siblings 'add more damage to the already tottering monogamy', too?

And if so, how, and if not, then why would gay or polygamous marriages do so?

It's hard for me to believe that people would look down upon a pair -- or more -- of brothers teaming up to raise children together. Rather the opposite, I would think, even in this current world where the worst is thought of men by default. Or that this would in any way cause any kind of meaningful 'damage' to monogamy.

Why would gay or polygamous marriage 'damage' monogamy when the formalization of similar status for two -- or more -- brothers raising their children together would not?

It still appears to be the case that what's being denied here is the right of two men or women -- or more than one of each -- to both have sex AND raise children with each other; that people can do one or the other, it seems, but NOT both at the same time.

And so I would STILL really like to know why that is or should be. Please. Twice.

1:41 AM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Unknown said...

theres been a lot of use over the words "it takes a village", so in a plural marriage, you would have more people to look after the children, which i am assuming is a good thing, as they will be more stable in a more stable environment.

people cant seem to seperate legal marriage and religious marriage, which can be completely poles apart, if my religion says more than one partner or that gay marriage is ok, then that somehow offends the religion of that country, who preaches seperation of church and state.

as one poster says, if it hurts no one and is done by consenting adults, then why should you care, it has got NOTHING to do with you.

3:34 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Polygymy isn't really the issue here, is it? If it is, well, I have some reservations from my own experiences at a very small, terribly incestuous liberal arts college. I don't remember many happy endings to the multifarious menage a trois-type love-ins. Too many stressors. Too many hurt feelings. But I knew some gay couples who were very normal and happy.

So I'm not keen on polygymy, although the Mormons seemed to have done okay with it for a while. But gay marriage is both harmless & a good diea, IMHO.

8:15 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like a lot of the comments above about getting the State out of "marriage". Then Berman's comment at PJM makes an excellent point:

"Although I emphasize with the Libertarian quest for minimal State intervention, the fact is, the State does have a set of interests and, like it or not, States succeed or fail based on whether or not those interests are represented. One of them is self-defense: you might privatize large parts of the military, you might have a volunteer army, but in the end, the State decides to send people to war or not.
Well, the State also seems to have a compelling interest in getting men and women to get together and stay together and raise children together. Explicitly recognizing that by supporting marriage is how States--all of them--have perpetuated themselves. So I ask you, Dr. Helen, not to look at this as a libertarian, or a conservative, or liberal, but as a scientist. Where is the evidence that a State can be successful over a reasonable period of time, say, 100 years, with gay marriage? Don't you think that some State, somewhere, would have tried it and maintained it in the last few thousand years? Why didn't the ancient Greeks have gay marriage? Was it their silly Judeo-Christian homophobia? Why did Rome have it for a little while, starting with Nero (Nero!) and ending with, well, we know what happened to Rome."

9:33 AM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger SGT Ted said...

'When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone,' it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less.'

I didn't know Humpty was a leftist.

11:35 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am against gay marriage. For a variety of reasons - religion being pretty much the last and least important. I think that the most healthy relationship for kids is a mother with a father (who are married). Will every relationship be like that? No of course not. But we should encourage the most healthy thing - not promote any kind of alternative lifestyle.

I am not homophobic. I adore one of my lesbian friends but even so I don't think she and her partner should be allowed the same marriage rights that my husband and I have. They are able to shore up their finances / issues with wills and lawyers.

Just as I don't think the state should encourage single motherhood, they shouldn't encourage homosexual marriage. Neither is the optimal thing for kids or society. And I say that as someone raised by a single mom.

11:48 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just an FYI - I'm not really "for" gay marriage because I think it's creepy. That's not a sufficient reason for making something illegal, however.

I'm not sure I agree with the notion that states perpetuate themselves by promoting heterosexual marriage. Because a state condoned homosexuality and then failed, doesn't mean it failed because it condoned homosexuality.

I think states perpetuate themselves either by controlling non-state entities through the use of force, or by successfully promoting the safety and prosperity of their citizens. Usually some combination of the two, I guess.

People are going to get married and/or reproduce with or without the active support of the state.

11:48 AM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Acksiom - I just wanted to comment that there will always be exceptions to the rule that kids are best raised by two parents, man and woman, who are married. I was raised by a single mom (father died). You had a bad mom and probably would have been better off with uncles/father. But exceptions to the rule should not dictate the law.

Children, IMHO, need a man and a woman who are in a stable relationship. On the other hand, if I had to place a child in the hands of an abusive or unstable couple (man/woman) or a stable and healthy gay coule...I'd choose the gay couple. But I don't think that should be the first choice. The first choice for children should always be a traditional man/woman relationship.

12:00 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Cham said...

Getting married doesn't necessarily equate having or raising children. Right now it is very legal to have and raise a child out of wedlock, yet our government doesn't seem to be up in arms about the many women who are choosing to do just that. This bit about banning gay marriage because the government feels that children should be raised by a woman AND a man doesn't hold water.

12:48 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

Tomcal: "For me that's a little too close. I have some very attractive first cousins and there seems to be something in me that just says no, no way, not even in the realm of possibilities.

I realize most people are not comfortable with such a relationship and I am fine with that. When I was 14 I had a "kissing cousin", but I broke it off because I felt guilt from two sources: perhaps God did not approve and my grandma definitely didn't! Today, I still find her very attractive. I have wanted to have a conversation with her about it, but now that she is married, I figured some things are best left unsaid. There is an Argentine movie called "Familia Rodante" with a teenage girl who is attracted to her cousin, but it is not mutual. I would like to see a poll on the issue. I called Gallup once and they said they didn't know of such a poll.

Kids of 1st cousins (cousins once removed) - hard to think about. 2nd cousins (your parents' cousins kids), I have one who is extremely attractive and successful, and under the right cicumstances I might do her, but even that is a stretch. But if a child of hers and a child of mine (third cousins) were to hit it off, I suppose I wouldn't experience any second thoughts.

Most people get confused by those terms. Although it is quite simple to understand once it is explained. The one that confused me was what to call siblings of your great-grandparents. Then I realized that instead of great-aunts and uncles, we should be using grand-aunts and uncles and then it makes sense. I have a 2nd cousin that is very beautiful and smart, but she is already married. My dad's first cousin married a second cousin.

I guess if I were a member of a Royal Family, the family would die out.

LOL. Research downplays risk of cousin marriages. Most people would probably be surprised to learn that in about half of the states it is legal, including California. In Utah, you must be a certain age (say 50) to reduce the chance of risk. I once wrote to my Republican state representatives to change the law to allow children, but surpisingly they didn't support me. :) The ones that did respond were very nice to me though.

Graham Strouse: So I'm not keen on polygymy, although the Mormons seemed to have done okay with it for a while.

Some of my ancestors didn't enjoy it. Warren Jeffs group in Arizona is a Mormon offshoot.

2:17 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had several cute cousins. Now they're all either dead or no longer associating with my branch of the family. It's all very Faulkneresque...

2:44 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Unknown said...

look at the sacred band of thebes, was a troop of picked soldiers, numbering 150 homosexual couples, which formed the elite force of the Theban army in the 4th century BC.

at tegrya, they defeated a force of three (3) times their own. this sacred band lasted 40 years, and help bring greece to world power at that time.

these soldiers fought and died for their country, they lovers, and they were recognised for it. why cant todays gay people be afforded the same rights as anyone else.

is it because people want to monitor and control anyones life thats somehow "unusual", why shouldnt people who feel love be able to legally state it, by having a marriage.

3:21 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love and the free expression of love are not at issue. Gays and lesbians have been more or less free to express themselves since the 1960s. Popular culture and academia are absolutely besotted with them. And they can even find churches that will marry them if that's what they need.

The issue is not whether mean old straight people won't let Mary and Jane or Bob and Ted have a traditional church wedding. It's whether these couples can claim each other on their income tax, act as next of kin, or share their retirement benefits. Some are demanding both; some, I think, would settle for the latter if it were fairly applied.

What's wrong with a legal category of domestic partnership - gender neutral - that two people can enter into in order to receive the desired benefits? Con't call it "marriage," don't call," don't call it "civil union" - just call it a contract. From the state's standpoint, it wouldn't matter whether you stood up in a church or synagogue and promised God to love, honor, & etc., or just decided you wanted to spend your lives together - that would be your business. As long as you had the paperwork you'd be good to go.

On the other hand, if you decided not to get the state involved, you'd be free to get married any way you want - just no bennies until you legally declared your status by completing the approved contract.

5:56 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

bugs: Now they're all either dead or no longer associating with my branch of the family.

Are you older or younger than 40? Now I would pick the former, but based on that answer...

6:01 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You mean 40 base 10 or dog years?

6:06 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

Sorry, I screwed up the grammar on that one! I meant to say I would pick younger.

6:07 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But, again, Tennwriter, would 'marriage-like' formalizations of child-rearing arrangements by siblings 'add more damage to the already tottering monogamy', too?

--If it was commonplace, instead of an incredibly rare situation, it would probably would be one more stressor on monogamy.
And if so, how, and if not, then why would gay or polygamous marriages do so?

--Polygamy and homosexuality go together. Society is not a completely free plain of action where the marble of actuality can roll freely on the plain of potentiality. There are hills and valleys on this plain where certain things gather together. Strange attractors is the term for the valleys, I suspect.

Monogamy, respect for women, intense care for children, a stable middle class, the bourgeious--all this is in one valley.

In another valley is polygamy and its attendant adulteries for the obvious reasons, and homosexuality when less powerful men can't fulfill their needs. Less focus on the future except by the powerful few. More great lords and little nobodies. Less care for children. More focus on the pleasures of the moment. Better restauraunts.

Why would gay or polygamous marriage 'damage' monogamy when the formalization of similar status for two -- or more -- brothers raising their children together would not?

==In addition, the two brothers are not evangelistic activists for their cause. They are just working on a problem the best way they can.

It still appears to be the case that what's being denied here is the right of two men or women -- or more than one of each -- to both have sex AND raise children with each other; that people can do one or the other, it seems, but NOT both at the same time.

==I certainly deny it. Its bad for society. While I think we need to revisit the relations of men and women in this country, I certainly don't want to go back to the pre-Christian idea of 'a woman is valued more than a goat, and less than a horse'.

We have an advanced society in our gender relations, and although some have degraded it with warped varieties of feminism, I see no reason to continue the process and go back to the ancient world.


6:14 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bugs is as old as his oldest blog comment. I am somewhat older.

6:18 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And on this topic, the best book to read (after the Bible and after pretty much every other holy text) is George Gilder's Men and Marriage.

Its short, sweet, politically incorrect, and epic in scope if not size. Its also one of those lightbulb books that put together a lot of confusing data points. I actually felt for a little bit after I read it that I understood how women thought, but I got over that.

It may be a bit dated now with some of its arguements having been won, but it was a lightning bolt that revealed the terrain all about me for a great distance.

6:21 PM, July 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As written by Buffy Saint Marie and sung by David Clayton Thomas:
I can swear there ain't no heaven, and I pray there ain't no hell. But I'll never know by living, only my dieing will tell.

6:47 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger tomcal said...

I don't give a hoot about what the law says. I'm not banging any of my cousins, no matter how attractive, ever.

8:45 PM, July 17, 2007  
Blogger Unknown said...

what ancient world are you talking about tennwriter, the greek ancient, or roman, or the 1960's.

why are people so upset that people want to use the word marriage. do they love each other less, do they care for any children if any, less. marriage is a legal construct co-opted by the government. relgion should be taken out of the legal side of marriage. The legal rights of everyone should be the same regardless, but this plainly isnt so.

marriage is just a word, might as well call heterosexual marriage a contract too then, it does the same thing. lets ban the word marriage. Is that better?

3:46 AM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Holy Matrimony, if you will, is a ceremony involving God. It is a promise to God, to your spouse - to the families on both sides, before all. It is much easier to not believe in God, for most, because you can relinquish any knowledge you may have of His word, that is the Bible.

Similar to why no members of the Flat Earth Society are astronauts, I suppose.

4:26 AM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What's wrong with a legal category of domestic partnership - gender neutral - that two people can enter into in order to receive the desired benefits?"

There are a number of problems for business economics:

- Most health care is linked to employment. Current employers have some way of estimating their healthcare budget based on percentages of their employees who will choose Employee-only versus the more expensive Employee-family. Will the effect on employer healthcare budgets be significant if same-gender partnerships are allowed? If the effect is non-negligible, will it be a positive effect or negative for the employer's ability to provide healthcare and the premium charged to the employees?

- Similar questions for Pension system, Social Security survivor benefits, etc.

My costs/benefits are directly impacted by the pool in which I participate. I don't know if there is anything wrong with a legal category of same-gender partnership; but I've never yet seen anyone offer an analysis. The debate is always emotionally centric.

12:08 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...

br549 is right. But one does not even need to bring God into the argument to show that homosexuality is a philosophically absurd, self-contradictory lifestyle that cannot be defended either in science or religion. In fact, the science is so anti-gay that the only way to advocate a gay lifestyle is if some god somewhere declared it to be a viable lifestyle, and we don't have that in any consequential civilization or religion. So the entire gay-marriage debate is a logical fallacy; begging-the-question (where one makes conclusions based on unproven premises). Until it is proven that homosexuality is viable (which cannot be done with science, philosophy, or religion), we should not be having the discussion about a government sanctioning the union financially. Homosexuality is stupid and almost always leads to a premature grave, whether gays want to admit it or not. In fact, any argument which advocates the lifestyle commits a logical fallacy. The only tactic for the gay agenda is a constant barrage of propaganda...which is exactly all that we ever see, not an actual intelligent debate over the issue, and gays know it. (Examine the history of removing homosexuality as a disease from the DSM-IV: all disruptive scare-tactics, no actual science or debate.) So they disrupt and stay loud and keep the side issues always on the front burner, like marriage, but never discuss the actual issue.

12:13 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some belive cousin marriage is a significant contributor to non-assimulation of immigrants. When you are expected to marry only within your tribe or ethnicity, then cultural isolation is encouraged.

For more info, a google on "europe turkey cousin marriage" will produce lots more reading material.

12:17 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People are upset because tinkering with the fundamental supports of a society is dangerous. It is especially so when those supports are groaning under the strain already.

Now is not the time to add more stress to marriage. Now is the time to re-invigorate it by welfare reform that encourages marriage, by getting rid of no-fault divorce, by recognizing that women as well as men can abuse, by making marriage more attractive to men.

Once we get the divorce rate down to 20%, we can talk.


12:21 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

An article with simpler prose, instead of academic heaviness, numerically illustrating the demographic effects of cousin marriage and/or ethno-centric marriage:

The above article is about Muslims in Europe. You could also look at family/chain immigration policies by the U.S. for Mexico; e.g. learning English versus continuing to speak Spanish.

12:26 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

Tomcal: I don't give a hoot about what the law says. I'm not banging any of my cousins, no matter how attractive, ever.

I was not trying to anger you, I wanted to have fun with the issue. Yes, we disagree on this issue and I am fine with that. I know I am in the minority. You are already married to what must be a wonderful women, given the time together. I really do not expect to ever be in a relationship with a cousin. As for the royalty comment, I was not trying to mock you. I really thought it was clever and funny.

1:04 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Serket said...

anonymous 1217/1226 - I have heard that idea about cousin marriage being the cause of Muslim isolation. I think Michael Savage either wrote about it or had a link on his website about it. I don't have any great intellectual arguments against their idea. However, I imagine stronger factors include forced marriage and no rights for women. Plus if everyone in a region shares the same basic ancestors, there is a high likelihood that a lot of people will share negative recessive traits.
Cousin marriage was more common in 19th century American than it is today. Did we have any great social problems caused by it? Charles Darwin married his first cousin. I do not expect a society where people prefer to marry their cousin. I am just thinking about the small chance that two cousins happen to be interested, then I believe they should be able to.

2:04 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon@12:08 - Good questions. Maybe the answers already exist somewhere - we just never hear about them.

3:08 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Unknown said...

ok matt, if your arguement holds true, then GOD, could stop all gays at a thought, he alledgely did it in soddom and gomorrah, but he hasnt.. unless you are one of the people who think gays are automatically evil people and aids is divine retribution.

how do you define viable, that people dont love enough if they are gay, i doubt you know any homosexual people, dont they deserve the chance that everyone else has on the planet.

the actual issue is, doesnt a human being of whatever race, sex, sexual orientation deserve the same rights as everyone else. its called equality.

3:15 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...

Vicious Victor:

ALthough you commit many logical fallacies in your post, I will be kind and only deal with one of them, which is the heart of the main argument...

No, the issue is not rights. You didn't listen. Or perhaps more rightly, you didn't read. And apparently you continue not to read on this topic. The issue is not whether or not someone can be gay...they certainly can be. The issue is whether or not being gay is a legitimate enough lifestyle for the government to then intervene with extra benefits. If it not a lifestyle worthy of those benefits, then the government should not sanction the lifestyle with status and tax exemptions. You have to prove that being gay is a viable and desirable lifestyle. My argument (though incomplete, because I did not take the time to prove it) was that I can prove with science, philosophy OR religion (but not necessarily religion) that being gay is not viable or desirable, but stupid. And although being stupid is a right, it is not and should not be sanctioned by the government. Your argument had nothing to do with mine, although you tried to combat it. I left God out of it and made a claim, and you answered my claim as if I used God to make my case. It is actually better for you if I leave God out of it, because otherwise, with God's decrees thrown in, you have nothing. At least now you can use science or philosophy (although judging from your post I suggest philosophy be ignored by you). So prove to me that a homosexual lifestyle is viable and desirable, and oh what the heck, just for kicks and giggles, we'll put no restraints on it: go ahead and try to use God to endorse it.

I'd say good luck, but you will need Providence. So good Providence.

3:45 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger tomcal said...

Anon 12:17

OK: If I die and am reincarnated as a european turkey, I might have sex with a cousin, but probably wouldn't bother to marry her.

4:25 PM, July 18, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matt, you make no sense. Why was homosexuality in the DSM in the first place (note, it wasn't removed in IV, it's last appearance was in II)? It didn't belong in its respective axis. If you want to talk about the science of it, realize that not a single disorder in it has any proven biological basis. They're cultural constructs.

Viability is a terrible rule for government awards. Let's say a man loses the ability to produce children. He's not viable. He should not be awarded the rights conferred to other heterosexual couples who can, correct?. A woman is born with a condition where she cannot have children...ditto. Now you could argue it's a lifestyle choice. Fine...a heterosexual couple chooses not to have kids....should they be allowed marriage?

But realistically, what you are arguing for is a massively restrictive and planned society. Being single and not having children is not viable (if it is, then so is homosexuality). When the divorce rate is above 50%, marriage's net viability and societal effect may very well be negative, so either marriage or divorce should be restricted. Birth control and condoms aren't viable...outlaw them. You are arguing for a society in which the government rewards all things that are viable. This is just a pillar in the nanny state.

6:09 PM, July 18, 2007  
Blogger Unknown said...

exactly anon 6.09

its not so much as extra benefits, its the same benefits as everyone else in that situation, its called equality.

(ok you call me vicious, but where did i actually insult you)

3:37 AM, July 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think another problem is how we, and gays, identify "gayness." What, exactly, is a "gay lifestyle?"

To some people, it's just two people of the same sex who love each other and want to live in a "marriage-like" relationship, just like any other couple.

To others, it's drag queens, gay bars, promiscuity, pederasty, anonymous sex in public lavatories, VD, AIDS, and premature death.

They both exist. Which one are we referring to when we discuss gay marriage? Is it even possible, or desirable, to separate them?

12:03 PM, July 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew Sullivan was all for gay marriage, fanatically so. And then he admitted that gay 'morality' was complex and they could not be limited to monogamy. I think Andrew might be satisfied if he got a Papal Bull saying "Andy, you're a-ok."


1:53 PM, July 19, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...


Sorry, no you did not insult me at all..I was just playing with your name.

Anon 6.09:

Sorry, your examples were of utility, not viability. A sterile man (to take one of your examples) is not useful for producing kids, but not necessarily inviable as a life.

You left my main argument in many ways, but I have neithe the time nor the energy to address them all...but I will say that my main argument remains: government should not sanction inviable lifestyles. Homosexuality is inviable. Therefore, government should not award it with policy.

But I am willing to listen if someone can prove it a viable life choice...

3:32 PM, July 19, 2007  
Blogger Mercurior said...

it depends on your definition of viable. and who decides what is a viable family structure. religion, theres many different religions.

how do you define a viable lifestyle? by your own ideas..

3:58 PM, July 19, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...


You are right, it does depend on the definition. But I disagree that it has to be subjective.

Alcoholism is a universally denounced lifestyle choice, and we seek to stop it...there is no need to be subjective with that definition. If one could show a lifestyle choice to be harmful, like alcoholism, then we can and should seek to intervene, and certainly not reward it with public policies.

I am generally defining lifestyles as viable that are not inherently harmful to oneself or others.

4:11 PM, July 19, 2007  
Blogger Mercurior said...

by your definition, religion could be called a harmful lifestyle choice, look at the many billions who die due to religious fervour. should we ban religion. we are all against the muslims, we were against the protestants and the catholics in england, and more people died.. they can be harmful to oneself and others.. look at the recent problems.. its all about moral relativism.

but if you are consenting adults, and you know the risks, and it only affects you and your partner.. then whats the problem. no one is forcing you to do something else. it doesnt affect you, does it.

4:17 PM, July 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not even sure what "viable" means in this context. It usually means that something can live and grow on its own. Secondary meaning is that it's useful, practical, or healthy.

A gay "marriage" obviously can live and grow on its own. Otherwise, it just ends - exactly like a non-viable heterosexual relationship does.

Whether a gay marriage is useful, practical, or healthy - I guess that's the question that drives much of the debate. I would say that by this definition there are plenty of heterosexual marriages that are not remotely viable - but as far as I know the state does not act to prevent them or break them up.

It's a difficult question. I wish I had gone to one of those Socialist Indoctinated Universities so I'd know all the answers.

4:48 PM, July 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm getting a headache.

8:46 PM, July 19, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We should ban atheism. 200m in the last century vs. 15m for pagans vs. a lot less for everyone else.

I'm not serious about the banning because I'm tolerant.

Marriage effects the society which is one of the main arguements for regulating it. No man is an island, and all that...


12:59 AM, July 20, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...

Wow Merc. Amazing.

First, I said INHERENTLY harmful, not "anything that can be twisted and distorted to be harmful." Otherwise nothing would be viable. Religion is not a counterpoint, unless you use Islam. You could actually make a case (albeit perhaps weak) that Islam is inherently harmful. That also rules out heterosexual marriage, because that is not INHERENTLY harmful. Many are bad, and stupid, and abusive, I agree. But that does not mean that the institution itself is philosophically inviable.

Bugs then thought this little gem would contribute: "Whether a gay marriage is useful, practical, or healthy - I guess that's the question that drives much of the debate." Really. Is that not what I have been arguing through this entire stream?

The fact is that the science is incontrovertable and easy: Homosexuality IS INHERENTLY HARMFUL. It always hurts the practicioners and the peripheral society.

And Tennwriter, please don't begin that stupid tolerance crap. You are not tolerant of many things. I could safely say that you are not tolerant of harmful things, like me slapping you around. You would fight back and then prosecute me, and rightly so. And I would guess that you are not tolerant of pedophilia, starving children, gang rape, or racism either. So get real. We are all tolerant and intolerant depending on what we think we know, and what we believe we can prove.

9:53 AM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can probably do a pretty good job of proving atheism is not well supported by the facts. But, God doesn't want robots or the coerced, He wants those who choose to come to Him. I have to allow people to choose Hell as God does.

I'm pretty close to a free speech and free religion absolutist. I'll let you sacrifice chickens if you like...draw the line at human sacrifice, tho'. I see no problem with Roy Moore's monument. It does not rise to the level of establishing a church. I would willingly allow Nazis to march through a Jewish community shouting their hate.

And this is so even when I can go a very long way toward proving that Jesus is the Christ, the Logres that was spoken when the world came into being. And this is so even though I can prove Nazis are idiots with say an hour's work.

You fail to distinguish between morality which we legislate, and godliness which we don't.

Tolerance of stupid opinions is essential.


11:58 AM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

br549 - I have a headache, too.

I know what! Let's you and me elope!

12:15 PM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That thounds sthwell to me sthweety!

1:20 PM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As J.P. let me pronounce.

...You're married. Now write me a check for eighty bucks. Marriage license dont'cha know. Care of Tennwriter...

1:59 PM, July 20, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...


But you still don't tolerate atheism, you speak against it. And you would still be intolerant of--how did you state it-- "...draw the line at human sacrifice, tho'." You would favor the state intervening and saving the life that was to be sacrificed.

"Tolerance of stupid opinions is essential." -you

Why? I think we agree more than is apparent, but we (I think, unless I am wrong here, and correct me if I am) disagree on some definitions, if not approach. I think we should be absolutely intolerant (not unloving or fascist-but intolerant) toward stupid opinions. Allowing a Nazi march to take place is not tolerance. It's civility and peace, but we aren't tolerant of the Nazi view or practice, and we speak against it. All activism is intolerance. So intolerance is not necessarily a forced compliance with someone else's view, although it certainly should be sometimes, but rather in most cases it is speech calling people to wise-up.

On this business of allowing folks to choose hell, no where in the Scriptures does any writer or evangelist take your approach. Not EVER do they sit back and present facts and then let people work them out. The Apostles, the evangelists, the founders of the Church, and the Christ Himself, nowhere tolerate people being stupid, they speak with authority and command with authority. Nor do any of them do what I have done and re-label sin as just stupid. Sin does make you stupid, and when I speak of stupidity I am speaking of the irrational, sinful choice to call good "evil" and evil "good," not just flunking a math quiz because you don't get math. The writers of scripture at every turn demand and command that people repent immediately of their "stupidity."

"You fail to distinguish between morality which we legislate, and godliness which we don't."

How do I fail in it? Obviously I don't, since I am arguing that the two need to synchronize, and we must demand that they do so and call them to do it now. In fact, the economy of the God of the Bible ALWAYS and UNEQUIVOCALLY works and manifests itself in the world, and our laws should reflect that. For example, homosexuality is not just wrong because God arbitrarily says so, He says so because it is stupid, defeats His creation and works against (though poorly and futily) His logic, and cannot be defended by philosophy or theology or science (i.e. God's economy.)

Yet since our laws do not reflect that, and I obviously recognize it, I am intolerant of the situation and call them to become the same. You fail to understand the nature of law, divine law, our obedience to both, and our right and duty to speak against what we know is both stupid and sinful.

2:59 PM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The fact is that the science is incontrovertable and easy...

Here's another "gem":

The science behind a lot of things is incontrovertible and easy; that doesn't mean we have to accept them. Eugenics, for example. I'm NOT equating a ban on gay marriage with something as horrendous as eugenics. Just pointing out that policies that make sense scientifically do not always make sense morally.

Unfortunately, this discussion is starting to smell like a deceased equine, so I'm outta here...

3:00 PM, July 20, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...

"The science behind a lot of things is incontrovertible and easy; that doesn't mean we have to accept them."

Again, wow. Basically you're admitting what the gay lobby already knows..."Yes the science may be in, ok there's no gay gene, ok, 'just because I am born this way' is not a defense of it anymore than it is a defense of pedophilia or serial killing, but I don't care. I don't accept what I know to be truth. I choose the lie."

You certainly don't have to accept it, you can be intolerant of whatever...but that doesn't mean that we can choose to be stupid and ignorant, or that we don't have the duty to be intolerant of that choice, and thus speak the truth.

3:11 PM, July 20, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are two definitions of Tolerance. Old Definition--'you're wrong, but I willing to let you make a bad choice.' New definition--'there is no real right or wrong.'

I'm a proponent of Old Tolerance. I think much of the disagreement is you think I'm saying 'New' Tolerance, but new tolerance is a degeneration of an important concept.

I do suspect we agree quite a bit.

In the New Testament, Jesus sends out the Disciples to preach, and he tells them to shake the dust of their feet and leave when those who won't hear them are at their destination.

I would allow people to sin in ways that don't directly harm another, or quickly lead to a dangerous weakness for the Nation. I come to this conclusion from prudential reasons (religious wars are not fun), and from the extension of the Biblical teaching first suggested by Martin Luther--soul liberty. My disagreement with gay marriage is because I think marriage needs to be strengthened, and that at some point there is a tipping point where society reclusters around another strange attractor which is less advanced than the mainstream one.


4:03 PM, July 20, 2007  
Blogger Matt Lambert said...

"I'm a proponent of Old Tolerance. I think much of the disagreement is you think I'm saying 'New' Tolerance, but new tolerance is a degeneration of an important concept."

Ok, fair enough. Maybe I did assume some New Tolerance in your comments. Perhaps I thought that you espousing a sort of combo of the two, which omitted the "You're wrong" clause in the Old Tolerance, which to me is crucial, and just leaving it at "but I'm willing to let you make a bad choice." Such an omission, I believe, is not Biblical or Biblically loving. But I now suspect you would agree with that.

My disagreement with gay marriage is not with the marriage part at all, I am approaching it from a much more foundational I am sure you realize, and perhaps you are being more pragmatic and realist about the fight. My argument will most likely go nowhere and be ignored, I realize, wheras your approach at least has a snowball's chance of gaining an ear or two.

"In the New Testament, Jesus sends out the Disciples to preach, and he tells them to shake the dust of their feet and leave when those who won't hear them are at their destination."

Say on. But the wiping of the dust from the feet is overt intolerance of the sin found there, and the disciples did not overlook it. They spoke to it, denounced it, called it what it was, and where necessary, they Judged it.

Glad to know you "stay dressed for action, and keep your lamps burning."

6:15 PM, July 20, 2007  
Blogger Mercurior said...

by who's definition is it "unhealthy", by who's definition is it sick, or stupid.

give me a study, non religious based.

6:38 AM, July 21, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stupid: packing fudge
Unhealthy,weird,and gross: packing fudge
Twisted (or sick, if you want): packing fudge

I can't understand anyone who would want to be the packer. It's too weird. Totally confused and disgusted by anyone who would want to be the "packee".

Oral sex with someone possessing the same tools as your own? Inconceivable.

The tools given a man and a there is truly a glove that fits the hand.

I have seen two guys kissing and groping in a park. Both had mustaches, and couple day old beards. That's more study than I ever wish to have seen.

In gay relationships, one takes a male role, the other a female role.
No matter if both are male, or female.

Let them do what they want. I just can't sanction it. And I won't do anything to stop it, it's their right to do as they wish. Just don't force it on me.

There are people who feel gay couples can raise children. I do not disagree with that. However, if a child is being raised by male parents, will s/he not have more a propensity to be gay, feeling it is normal, than if raised in a homosexual household? Which one is the dad if the child is asked by a teacher, etc.? Or the mom for crying out loud. Or if a child is raised by female parents, which one is the dad - or the mom?

It is my view consenting adults may do as they wish, as long as they cause no harm to others. As it should be, I suppose. But to confuse a child being brought up in that type household, well, the jury is still out.

A non religious, although non - sanctioned study.

10:12 AM, July 21, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, what's next? Fully sanctioning NAMBLA? If one thinks as they do, they have a valid argument. Will that lead to NAWGLA, too?

Didn't some woman or man in Spain marry a porpoise, or dolphin? If you let one through, don't you open the door for anything?

As soon as homosexuality got yanked from the DSM, the flood gates were opened.

Hitler had a whole nation behind him. Was he right? Hell, he did what most like him do. He deserted his followers.

10:35 AM, July 21, 2007  
Blogger Helen said...


It is fine to express your opinion but please refrain from the insulting language and terminology. Fudge packer is not a term I want to see used on my blog-please refrain from using it here.

9:39 AM, July 22, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I think about it in such under graphic lighting, it becomes more than an alternative life style, as projected by those who participate in it.

Although not always right (duh) I am forever opinionated. On this subject, my opinion is entrenched. So I suppose it is my problem for not accepting the paths of some. We parts ways here.

Thank you, and good day.

10:42 AM, July 22, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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