Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


Same-Sex Marriage
 
Marriage is currently defined as

being between two opposite sex people (no more than that) with the participating couple satisfying the following conditions:

 

1. Participants must be mature
2. Participants must freely enter into the relationship
3. Participants must be monogamous
4. Participants must intend a lifetime commitment
5. Participants must treat each other with love and respect
6. Participants must have sex - as in penis in vagina - at least once
7. For Catholics, participants must intend to have children even if they cannot for intention counts
 
When you read the rules, you see that most marriages cherry-pick from these requirements.
 
Same-sex marriage can be legal and/or religious. Many countries have validated same-sex marriage. Some recalcitrant religious believers hold that such marriage when performed in Church is a sacrament. A sacrament is a special blessing from God that enables the spouses to stay together in love and help each other into Heaven.
 
Some religious same sex marriage activists argue that two people having the same gender and kind of body should not be an obstacle to marriage. They say our spirits or souls are what matter and they transcend the body. So marriage is not about two body persons but about two spirit embodiments.

We are led to believe that marriage is defined as the union of a man and a woman. We are not told that marriage is considered potential until the man and woman have sexual intercourse at least once. Then it is consummated or made real. This is degradingly putting more stress on sexual potency and a particular kind of sex than on love and happiness. Its over legalistic and sets a biological criterion of morality instead of considering human happiness and love. It discriminates against straight couples who do not like "normal" sex. Same sex marriage changes this archaic nonsense and allows for accepting different forms of sex as consummation. Thus it IMPROVES equality for heterosexual couples. With same sex marriage, there is no longer any need to hold that the marriage of a man who lost his penis in childhood is only a cosmetic marriage.
 
Marriage strictly speaking is defined as the union for life of a man and woman who have had penis vagina sex at least once. If that kind of sex never happens then the marriage is considered unconsummated and invalid. Gay marriage changes these rules including the consummation one. It means that marriage is made by love and not sex or at least a specific kind of sex. If same sex marriage does not require the couple to engage in sexual activity then it discriminates against other sex marriage which requires sexual activity to become valid.
 
Same-sex marriage is about love. That is the answer to those who say that if you change the definition of marriage then why not define polygamy as marriage etc. Heterosexual marriage without love is never condemned.
 
The view that same-sex marriage is immoral or invalid and therefore wrong is not to be respected. We cannot let people ask us to respect evil and injustice.
 
People fear that recognising same-sex marriage automatically means that the couple have the right to be considered as adoptive parents. What is wrong with that? If in principle they can adopt it does not mean in practice that they will get a child. That depends on factors other than the fact that they are a gay couple.
 
It is strange that single gay people are allowed to adopt while those in a stable, perhaps civil partnered relationship are not!
 
A child raised by one gay parent who later takes on a partner will not be taken away. Are we to take adoptive children away from a gay person who starts living with her or his gay lover who also takes on the role of parent?
 
Those who oppose adoption by same sex couples treat it like it is child abuse. Not all have the guts to admit that they regard it as child abuse. But some admit it. If you are worried about the children, then realise that with same sex marriage coming in, fewer gay people will marry heterosexually and have children.
 
Many gay couples do raise children and how can people say that if marriage protects the family, that it is right to refuse to let the couple marry? Opposition to same sex marriage shows no concern for protecting a family where the parents are the same sex. Yet the opponents insist that marriage is about protecting the family and is the best and most effective arrangement.
 
The fear is not about concern for the children. Religious people will pretend that it is. It is the fear that an archaic and stupid religious rule banning same sex love-making is being disregarded.
 
The Church says that same sex relationships are sterile. But science is not able so far to make them reproductive. But we know that it will one day. Imagine a lesbian couple in twenty years. A cell can be taken from one woman and used to make dedifferentiated stem cells that make sperm. The sperm can be used to fertilise an egg in the other woman. Two men will also be genetic parents of a baby as well. So it is not true that same-sex relationships are sterile. They need help in reproduction but they are not sterile.
 
The Church performs legally valid marriages for the state. Therefore as a representative of the state, the Church has no right to refuse to perform same sex marriage in states that recognise it. It cannot be granted a dispensation from equality law. That would be the state giving it special favour and be anti-secular. It has to stop doing marriages for the state and do marriages that are religious but not legal if it wants to be exempt from having to wed same sex couples.
 
Marriage is defined by the Christian faith as the lifelong union of one man and one woman for life to the exclusion of any other sexual partners. The state, if it takes seriously the distinction between Church and state, may adopt this definition but will not consider itself bound to it. The state rightly re-defines marriage to avoid discriminating against same-sex couples.
 
Can a Christian say, "The state does its thing. My religion does its thing. One should not meddle with the other. Therefore if the state wants to legalise same sex marriage then it should even though I consider and God considers same sex marriage to be an abomination." This would not be saying that the state is right - it would be like saying that if criminal gangs are not caught then let them rob until they are. It speaks of their freedom not their right. It is not saying they really have a right to rob. The Christian then is not watering down his or her faith or giving consent to what the state is doing.
 
Accepting same sex marriage defines marriage as a union between two people of the same or the opposite sex. It does away with the man and woman part of the definition of marriage which is that marriage is a life-long union between a man and a woman.
 
The state if it refuses to even consider re-defining is guilty of breaking its obligation to accord with democracy. The definition sought by a democratic society is the one that must be imposed. Religion forbids contemplating a re-definition. It will try to undermine the separation that should exist between Church and state by urging the state to use the religious definition.
 
Religion prefers to encourage the promiscuity it accuses gay people of by its opposition to gay marriage - though it faints with horror and outrage at promiscuity. Oh the hypocrisy! The Christian view of marriage is that the man is the head and the woman is under his authority. Few Christians dare to teach this today and yet these are the ones opposing the gay right to have a relationship protected by law.
 
Religion says, "We condemn discrimination if it's unfair. We do not believe gay or lesbian people have the right to marry. Thus it is not discrimination to deny them marriage rights simply because they cannot really marry no matter what they do or how hard they try. A man and man union is not the same as a male-female union such as that of marriage."
 
The religious are saying they have the right to define marriage as a male and female union and they deny the right of people to have a different definition based on love. Same sex marriage is based on the idea that love makes a marriage regardless if the married couple is the same sex or not. Its not about gender but love. And even if the critics of gay marriage were right and gay marriage is only a delusional marriage, who cares as long as the couple feels married and in love? Who cares as long as it improves their lives?
 
The thought that same sex marriage will weaken heterosexual marriage is strange for lgbt people are a minority and only a minority of that minority will marry.
 
It is unfair to regard a civil partner couple that love each other with a record love as mere civil partners and then to regard a married couple that never had much love as married. Better for marriages to be seen as equal to civil partnerships. The only way that can be done is by making the two exactly the same which means re-defining marriage so that it becomes just another name for civil partnership. Civil partners should have all the benefits of marriage.