Thoughts on anti-Prop 8 arguments.

This site comes in response to friends who complained, "I don't know how to answer when Pro-8 folks say 'X'."

These arguments are meant to be discussed OUT THERE, in real life with real people, not here in the reverberating blogosphere. There are plenty of sites where you can discuss them. So, no comments here.

To those who believe in equal rights for ALL, Prop8 = PropHate. If you have any doubts that this is solely about discrimination, then try replacing "gay marriage" with "inter-racial marriage" and "gay" with "black".

Help us protect our families, defend our rights, and defeat the hate amendment.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Argument 4: My church will lose its tax exempt status

This one is also a lie, at so many levels. We have freedom of religion, freedom of association, and freedom of speech and prop8 has no effect on this either way. (For a legal counterpoint to the lies, click here.)

First, The only limit on religious speech is that churches are not allowed to actively endorse a candidate for office and retain their tax exempt status. Churches are always free to discuss moral issues. Look at the Mormons who are basically bankrolling the pro-Prop8 campaign. No limits there.

There are even white supremicist "Christian" churches which legally function in this country despite the hatefulness of their speech. Again, if that offends you, remember that to a gay person your opposition to our legal rights is a form of bigotry.

In any case, we have very very broad rules protecting even "offensive" speech in the US. Things are different in Canada and Sweden for example, where they allow more restrictions; but their experience is not relevant to our free speech laws. In the US, nothing prevents your church from preaching vehemently against homosexuality, either with or without Prop8, however misguided some of us may find that.

Second, no church is forced to marry anyone it doesn't want to. Any priest, pastor, imam or rabbi can decline to marry ANY couple who presents themselves, for any reason. The Catholics for example refuse to marry anyone who has had a civil divorce (unless the church has also annulled the marriage). No change there either.

The fact is that if your church is opposed to gay marriage, you have no problem: don't perform gay marriages.

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