Friday, December 18, 2009

DC Mayor Signs Same-Sex Marriage Law

Washington (CNN) -- The nation's capital city took a major step Friday toward legalizing same-sex marriage.

District of Columbia Mayor Adrian Fenty signed a measure recognizing such marriages as legal. The district council overwhelming passed the bill Tuesday, following a similar vote December 1.
Fenty signed the measure at All Souls Church, a Unitarian Universalist house of worship in the northwest part of the district that is known for its diversity and for the welcoming of same-sex couples.

The measure now goes to Congress for a 30-day review period, but it's considered unlikely that the Democratic majority on Capitol Hill would block the bill. By law, Congress has the right to review and overturn laws created by the District of Columbia's council.

If the measure becomes law, the district will join Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont and Iowa in legalizing same-sex marriages. A law legalizing such marriages in New Hampshire takes effect January 1.

Earlier this year, lawmakers in Maine approved a measure legalizing same-sex marriages, but voters in the state last month passed a referendum to overturn the new law. Last week, New York's state Senate defeated a bill that would legalize such marriages. A similar bill stalled last week in New Jersey's state senate.

Tuesday's vote in the nation's capital prompted approval from gay rights groups. The Human Rights Campaign called passage of the legislation "a victory for all D.C. residents."

"The legislation the council passed today reinforces the legal equality and religious freedoms to which all D.C. residents are entitled," the organization's president, Joe Solmonese, said in a written statement.

The National Organization for Marriage, which opposes same-sex marriage, said "the fight is not over."

"Politicians on the city council are acting as if they have the right through legislation to deprive citizens of D.C. of their core civil right to vote, but we will not let them get away with it," said Brian Brown, the organization's executive director.

"We will go to Congress, we will go to the courts, we will fight for the people's right to vote," he said.

Opposition to the legislation also came from the Catholic Church's Archdiocese of Washington, which has said that the measure could restrict the church's ability to provide charity services, apparently because the church might cut back on services rather than comply with the measure's requirements.
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It is inevitable. One day all of the US will have equality in this arena. The US does seem to gravitate towards equality, albeit sometimes after quite awhile.

15 comments:

Susannah said...

"but it's considered unlikely that the Democratic majority on Capitol Hill would block the bill."

No, really?

"One day all of the US will have equality in this arena."

James, you don't get it, do you? There already IS 'equality' in this arena. ANY person of legal age can/may/shall get married, if it is their delight, their choice, their wish. Nobody stops them!

Marriage = one man + one woman.

James' Muse said...

By your definition, Susannah :)

"Marriage" has had many definitions in the world, even in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

I'm talking about secular marriage. Christian marriage, within the Church, can and should always keep your definition.

But in a secular society? We cannot make laws solely based on bibilical principles. It does violate the separation.

Susannah said...

James, dear, your response is BEAUTIFUL in its illustration of my point in the comments below (culture war on Christmas):

"those whose aim is to strip our culture of references/traditions relavant to Christianity are NOT doing it out of some desire to be humanitarian or magnanimous... They're doing it do deprive Christians of expression in the public square - as not to offend those who aren't."

Like it or not, my friend, we are a society founded on Judeo-Christian ethic. ANY system of law MUST be based on something. Law does not arise from a vacuum.(Praise be to God that this is our foundation, rather than Hamurabi's code or something god-awful like that.)

Thus, your justification for the abomination of gay 'marriage' is a perfect example of the secular-izing of our culture. And I'm even using YOUR word (secular), not mine. Perfect!

James' Muse said...

Like it or not, my friend, we are a society founded on Judeo-Christian ethic. ANY system of law MUST be based on something. Law does not arise from a vacuum.(Praise be to God that this is our foundation, rather than Hamurabi's code or something god-awful like that.)

Actually, our law isn't based on Judeo-Christian ethic. It's based on English Common Law, which is based in Common Law, which came about in English in during medieval times, which was in contrast to the Roman Civil Law system. Common law actually has more ties to Islamic Law than to Christian law.

But unlike either traditional Christian law or any other law, in the US the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land. Not the Bible, the US Constitution.

And in the Constitution, it is specifically stated that there is no State Religion, and therefore we cannot make something legal or illegal based solely upon religious principle. That would be violating the supreme law of the land.

James' Muse said...

Just did more research into common law:

Common law was the interpretation by the people [of England at the time] and inclusion of rulings, rules, church edicts, codes, and other laws into actual law (i.e. common law). This included Church teachings, teachings left over from Medieval Islamic law brought by the Saxons (who brought common law), parts of Hammurabi's code, and other edicts from different law systems that the people decided to include.

Nonetheless, our system is based upon the Constitution being the Supreme Law, and that is where we fall back on, not the Bible.

TRUTH 101 said...

There are still preachers that believe interracial marriage goes against Bible teaching. I personally don't care what the Bible says about that or gay mariage. To deny two people the right to marry in a civil court is crap and if it means the preacher thinks I'm going to hell, so can he. Or she. I support female preachers as well.

Susannah said...

James~ Okay. We simply disagree. No surprise there. You can do all the research you want, but you cannot dispute the Founding Fathers' own words:

–John Adams (a letter written to Abigail on the day the Declaration was approved by Congress)
“The general principles upon which the Fathers achieved independence were the general principals of Christianity…I will avow that I believed and now believe that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.”
• "July 4th ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.”

"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." --October 11, 1798

Samuel Adams: October 4, 1790
“ Let divines and philosophers, statesmen and patriots, unite their endeavors to renovate the age by impressing the minds of men with the importance of educating their little boys and girls, inculcating in the minds of youth the fear and love of the Deity…and leading them in the study and practice of the exalted virtues of the Christian system.”

John Quincy Adams:--1837, age of 69, Fourth of July speech at Newburyport, Massachusetts.
• “Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the world, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day [the Fourth of July]?" “Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer's mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity"?

I could go on...and on...and on...because THEY did.

Truth~
"There are still preachers that believe interracial marriage goes against Bible teaching."

Yes, there probably are. I should ask my (African American) Sr. Pastor what he thinks about that - seeing as how his grandson is biracial.

"I personally don't care what the Bible says about that or gay mariage."

I do. And it's quite clear, contrary to what 'progressive Christians' want to believe.

"To deny two people the right to marry in a civil court is crap and if it means the preacher thinks I'm going to hell, so can he."

Nope. Nobody is being denied anything - as I said to James. Marriage is available to all. BTW, I didn't hear anyone say you (or anybody else) is going to hell. That's NOT what this is about. It IS about the moral deterioration of our society, however, a 'secularization' which tolerates EVERYTHING BUT people of faith - and wants to turn our society upside down to accomodate the whims of a very small minority - in the name of tolerance & political correctness. Tolerance - a great irony.

Sorry, James, but you & your friend Truth here are complicit in the secularization aforementioned.

"I support female preachers as well."

So do I. AND I'm not stuck on God being male or female. God is God - and couldn't have created (imo)masculinity OR femininity without having intimate and thorough knowledge of the characteristics of each.

Thanks be to God.

Susannah said...

Truth & James~
When I say this: "moral deterioration of our society...which tolerates EVERYTHING BUT people of faith - and wants to turn our society upside down to accomodate the whims of a very small minority - in the name of tolerance & political correctness"

THIS is what I'm talking about:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704238104574602470345172100.html?mod=djemEditorialPage

I am one of those exhausted American parents that Ms. Noonan speaks of in the latter paragraphs, but she's absolutely correct to note that I'll go to any lengths to protect my children from "what they do in New York." I don't care what they do in New York, either.

Go ahead, read her article if you dare. I, for one, find it extremely gratifying to know that I'm not alone in my stance - far from it. (But I knew this.) And that nothing is "inevitable" as James would have us believe.

I'm one who is willing to take a stand for what I believe is right. That doesn't mean I must demonize the other side (remember Truth's 'go to hell' assumption?).

Some things are simply black & white, friends; not all things, of course, but some really are.

James' Muse said...

Susannah,

I think we both agree and disagree, as weird as that is.

What I mean is this: I believe, and you do too, that Christian churches should never be forced to perform gay marriages. It goes against the Bible, and I never want to force a religion to do something it does not believe in.

I believe, and you don't, that in the secular world, in a civil ceremony, gays should be allowed to marry legally, as in the legal contract of marriage before the eyes of the government.

While [some of] the founding fathers believed that we should be more religious, others disagreed, and that is why our Constitution, the Supreme Law of the Land, maintains that Congress should stay away from religion.

But, while I support civil gay marriage, I don't support attacking Christians and not allowing them freedom either, and yes, you are right: All too often, in the name of tolerance, we are required to tolerate everyone but the Christians. And that is not right.

I did read your article, and I liked it. I'm not a fan of public displays of [gratuitous] affection. I don't "make out" with my wife in public, and I would never do so in front of children. I expect the same courtesy from gay and straight couples alike. Yes, even on the broadcast channels. I expect a little more restraint.

TRUTH 101 said...

My problem has always been those that use God to reinforce their own views. Good taste is not confined to Christians. I think we should all excersize discretion and manners.

Susannah said...

James~ "I think we both agree and disagree, as weird as that is."
Agreed.

Weird, yes, especially considering your rationale:
"I support civil gay marriage, I don't support attacking Christians"
It's one in the same, imo. You can't have it both ways, James. Gay 'marriage' is a perversion of the institution - no duplicity allowed.

Civil Unions? Fine, whatever.

But marriage is marriage & it DOES NOT include single gender relationships!

Like Truth says "My problem has always been those that use [secularism/sep. of Church & state] to reinforce [impose] their own [perversions]" on the rest of the population. (Thanks for the wording, Truth. It was exactly the logic I was using.)

"in the name of tolerance, we are required to tolerate everyone but the Christians"

You're darned right - "we" allow, invite, endorse almost every perversion known to man in the name of "tolerance." But just the hint of Christian influence, & all proverbial he@# breaks loose. I, for one, am sick to death of it!!!

Merry Christmas, friends.

James' Muse said...

I think we'll always disagree on this one thing, Susannah. Gay marriage by the state is not attacking Christians. It's merely not letting the Bible dictate our laws. As I've mentioned, our supreme law in this country is the US Constitution, not the Bible. I for one am glad, because we just cannot interpret it correctly enough to govern. Remember the last time we let the Bible rule around here? In Salem, when we burnt people?

Secular marriage is a contract. Nothing more. Marriage within the church will always, and should alway, be between a man and a woman, as that is how the Christian church defines marriage. I would not presume to tell it that it has to change its definition. But neither would I tell Muslims that they must change their marriage traditions, or Hindi, or other religions, that they must adopt my traditions either.

That is why I prefer Latin America's system of marriages better. You have one civil ceremony for the legal marriage and it's contractual benefits and obligations. Then you have another in your church, which is the one that you do before God and invite all your family and friends. In Mexico City, the government will grant same-sex marriages civilly, but the couple may not get married in their Catholic church because the Church won't condone it nor recognize it within it's walls. And that is fine. But the state grants them all the rights of a married couple. And that too, is fine.

Susannah said...

"Gay marriage by the state is not attacking Christians."

Yes, it is. Do you know what I'VE been called just b/c I refuse to accept the concept of gay marriage (& never ONCE have I said anything about gay people & their salvation, etc.)? Any hint of my reasons leads to 'bigot' 'homophobe' 'hateful'
'intolerant' 'anti-freedom' 'anti-civil rights' 'oh, & I bet you HATE other minorities, too!' 'selfish' 'judgemental' 'narrowminded,' etc., etc., etc. And these are people who have NO idea who I am, what I really believe & how I behave toward my fellow human beings. How fair is that? How tolerant is that? How understanding, generous & respectful is that? Not. The hypocrisy is just OUTSTANDING!

I could go on & on. The problem I have (again, using Truth's line of thought) is when people use their secularism/tolerance/sep. Ch.&St to justify DEMONIZING ME simply because I hold a stance based on my faith.

It absolutely IS an attack on Christians. I say so based on my personal experience; & what I see happening in the 'mainline' (read here: weak) churches who are so scared of the attack that they'll bow to anything (Episcopal/Presbyterian & almost Methodist - heaven help me) to avoid having to take the abuse that James Dobson, et. al. endure.
Not an attack on Christians & Christianity? Give me a break.

Now, are you gonna tell me I have 'marriage derangement syndrome' James? If so, I'll defend it proudly & will take my dying breath doing so. THAT'S how much the sanctity of marriage means to me.

"Marriage within the church will always, and should alway, be between a man and a woman, as that is how the Christian church defines marriage. I would not presume to tell it that it has to change its definition."

But, friend, that's EXACTLY what the progressive homosexual movement is doing inside the legal system AND the Church. They don't like something, feel put upon & feel entitled to demanding that the rest of our society conform to THEIR whims.

And, I really don't care what marriage is in Mexico. I'm not Mexican, I don't live in Mexico & last time I checked, our societal organizational structure didn't base itself on other countries' trial-&-error.

No, dear James. We will not agree on this. No sense in discussing it further.

Happy Hannukah.

Susannah said...

Oh, & Merry Kwanza.

James' Muse said...

Agree to disagree I guess. But for the record, while I condone gay marriage, I don't condone attacking you for your beliefs. That is wrong.

Happy holidays.

Merry Christmas.

And happy new year!