I love the quote at the end of this article.
If anyone starts claiming marriage as religious just refer them to the following:
The first written legal texts defining marriage and marriage ‘rights’ date to about 2000 BC and the Code of Hammurabi in ancient Babylonia.
The primary focus of that legal framework was collective social stability and the transfer of legitimate individual property rights.
That focus was further refined by the imperial judicial codes of the late Roman Empire under the Emperors Theodosius and Justinian between 340-735 AD.
Love and God were NOT considered of much importance. Stability and property rights were.
To this day the interest in social order and protection of property rights remains the fundamental justification of civil marriage sanctioned by government.
Indeed, that justification has been so strong that little change has occurred in the traditional definition of civil marriage.
Additionally, we have to look at the root of our current religious marriage doctrines.
Worldwide historical religious marriage beliefs and rituals have been extremely diverse.
The more structured expectations of religious marriage did not really develop in western culture until 1563 when the Roman Catholic Church at the Council of Trent made reforms to the holy sacrament of marriage in response to the Protestant Reformation.
Prior to that ‘religious marriage’ was a private affair with various pagan or Christian rituals conducted at the discretion of the participants.
The Council of Trent also established the distinct separation between civil and religious marriage, as advocated by protestant reformers, which we practice to this very day.
The Roman Catholic Church reformed the marriage sacrament for four primary reasons:
Firstly to encourage the covenant of marriage, according the teaching of Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul as a means to spread the faith of the Gospels.
Secondly to counter the Protestant Reformation and re-establish the primacy of the Roman Catholic Church liturgies.
Thirdly to increase political influence over the rising royal family elites of Europe.
And fourthly, to increase tax revenues collected by the Church from both royals and laypersons.
Gay marriage is a battle that needs to be won if America can ever say she is a free country again.
Is this serious? Does the status of America as a free country depend solely on gay marriage or are there other issues such as democracy, free elections, freedom of speech, rule of law etc. Gay individuals in America are permitted to go where they wish without controls, spend money on most items, travel abroad, publish letters in newspapers and on the internet, own property, proclaim their orientation – all without risk of conviction.
Similarly, do those issues that impact freedom have no status – such as Guantanamo Bay, the death penalty for people who receive insufficient legal assistance and/or who have psychiatric illness, the measures signed by President Obama that allow indefinite detention without charge of any American citizen, the proposals to block any internet web-site anywhere in the world without due process?
What an example of myopia. France and the UK have civil partnerships but not gay marriage. It would hardly be worth saying that they are not “free countries”.
The notion that all men are created equal and endowed with certain inalienable rights enshrined in the constitution are nothing but utopian. There has never been total equality in America and still hasn’t been since it’s founding. It’s pure fantasy to think that people born into wealth and those who aren’t are equal in any society. George Washington, the first president along with other founding fathers owned slaves. In fact it was legal and also enshrined in the constitution.
In no country has there been true equality. Not under the system of capitalisme sauvage in America, the moderate capitalism of the UK, communism in Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea. etc.
Now, Rosa Parks, we insist you return to your seat in the back of the bus, while we white folk gonna vote on what you think is your right to sit anywhere. Do you think you’re equal to us voting folk? What…..you’re thirsty? Sorry Ma’am…we voted away all colored drinking fountains last week ! Next week we’re gonna vote to paint more stripes on the skunks, so we can call ‘em tigers!
Oh, look the sad keith troll thing. Poor guy.
Your bigotry smells the same. I can’t tell the difference between you and someone against interracial marriage. Same exact tone and arguments about something that hurts no one and is an act of love. As a black person, I’ll tell you now that the fight against racism and the fight for human rights for people regardless of their orientation are indeed very similar.